Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Life is Strange Episode 5 Review

The final episode is as spooky and jarring as the finale of the last episode suggested. Players will definitely be right with Max in wanting to get out of the situation, but when they find themselves in the new situation it doesn't become any better.

The butterfly effect is in full swing here, as Max struggles to make changes in the past that don't have dangerous repercussions in the present. She really does find herself having to choose between several bad choices over other bad choices.

The alternate universe idea from the last episode is kicked up to eleven here, as we find Max in multiple alternate universes. Some universes have more disastrous consequences than others, but each feels real and the people within are true to the personalities of the characters we've come to know, no matter to which timeline they belong.

Unfortunately, the episode makes a few missteps that keep it from being up to the high standards of the previous episode. The awkward slang from the villain is really terrible here. The few older slang terms that Chloe and Max used in earlier episodes is nothing compared to the terrible word puns in play here that just serve to make the player cringe, and take even manage to take away a bit of the evilness of the character. Not to say that being with this character still wouldn't be a terrible experience, but something's lost with these attempts at wordplay humor that come off as ridiculous rather than creepy.

The more troubling problem, though, comes at the end, when choosing between the game's two endings. It really does feel like there's a good ending and a bad ending, rather than the "Sophie's Choice" feeling that the game has been pushing towards. One ending is long and fulfilling in its own way, while the other feels rush and unsatisfying in comparison.

This lopsided finale doesn't quite live up to its promising start. All in all, however, the season still remains a great example of cinematic choices and consequences gameplay that fans of this type of game owe it to themselves to experience.

Final verdict:
4 out of 5

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