|Life Is Strange: Before The Storm|
|Developer(s)||Deck Nine Games|
|Writer(s)||Ashly Burch (writing consultant),|
Zak Garriss (head writer)
|Director(s)||Webb Pickersgill (co-director),|
|Series||Life Is Strange|
|Engine||Unreal Engine 4|
|Release date(s)||August 31, 2017 (est.)|
Windows 10 (required)
|Previous game (release)||Life Is Strange (Season 1)|
|Next game (release)||"Life Is Strange Season 2"|
|Next game (canon)||Life Strange (Season 1)|
Life Is Strange: Before The Storm is a multiplatform game developed by Deck Nine Games and published by Square Enix. Set three years before the events of Life Is Strange, Life Is Strange: Before the Storm follows the exploits of Chloe Price (a resident of Arcadia Bay), and explores the beginning of her relationship with her best friend, Rachel Amber. Before the Storm is currently in development, with the first episode pending a August 31, 2017 for the PlayStation 4, XBox One and the PC via Steam and other online retail sites for PC Gaming.
- "Life is Strange: Before the Storm is a new three part; standalone adventure set three years before the first game in the BAFTA award-winning franchise. You play as sixteen-year old Chloe Price who forms an unlikely friendship with Rachel Amber, a beautiful and popular girl destined for success. When Rachel learns a secret about her family that threatens to destroy her world, it is her newfound friendship with Chloe that gives her the strength to carry on. No longer alone the girls must confront each other’s demons and together, find a way to overcome them."
- —Square Enix
- Chloe Price - A cheerful young girl turned rebellious young woman, Chloe is struggling to deal with the death of her father as she forges a bond with Rachel Amber.
- William Price - Chloe Price's father and the husband of Joyce Price. His death drives his daughter into a deep depression.
- Joyce Price - Chloe Price's mother and the wife of William Price. Joyce struggles to deal with the loss of her husband and attempts to consolidate her grieving daughter.
- Rachel Amber - Rachel Amber, a spirited young woman and popular girl at Blackwell Academy, becomes the friend of Chloe Price.
- Frank Bowers - A local drug dealer in Arcadia Bay, Frank Bowers is Chloe Price's dealer, and the lover of Rachel Amber.
- Max Caulfield - The childhood friend of Chloe Price. Max will only appear in a bonus episode with a self-contained story.
- Main article: Life Is Strange (video game)#Gameplay
Before The Storm, like the original Life Is Strange, is an adventure game with a branching narrative and dialog trees. The central player character, Chloe Price, can navigate the environment of Arcadia Bay and interact with various residents of the town.
However, where the major gameplay function in Life Is Strange was the ability to undo the consequences of an action with the "Rewind" feature, Chloe is given no such ability. Chloe's actions against and dialog with other characters will have lasting consequences that will affect the outcome of the game and the player is cautioned to "think before they speak".
The central three episodes for Before The Storm contain an estimated six to nine hours of gameplay for the player to complete. Other gameplay elements in the game, if the player purchases the "Deluxe Edition", include a "Mixtape Mode", where players can create a playlist from licensed music in the game to play during certain sequences in-game. Alternate skins for Chloe Price that contain three alternate outfits for Chloe to wear during certain points in the game's story.
When approaching the idea of a prequel for Life Is Strange, Deck Nine Games wanted to focus on the relationship between Rachel Amber and Chloe Price. They approached Square Enix with their pitch. Following the project's greenlight, Deck Nine Games began formulating a narrative based solely on the perspective of Chloe, whose actions could not be undone "by manipulating time", and could affect the narrative on a permanent scale, based on the character's reckless and headstrong behavior.
In order to properly develop to the story from Chloe's perspective, actress Ashly Burch (Chloe's original voice actress), was brought on their writing staff as a writing consultant. Burch co-wrote the dialog and story with Deck Nine Games staff writer, Zak Garriss, as well as provided notes and consulted on different aspects of the script so that the story and character remained in continuity with the original Life Is Strange narrative developed prior.
The narrative of Before The Storm focuses primarily on a sixteen year old Chloe struggling to come-to-terms with the death of her father, William Price, who was killed in a car accident. Burch empathizes that Before The Storm is a "prequel written by fans of the first game", which convinced Burch that the story was "in good hands".
In addition to developing Chloe's story, Deck Nines Games penned a self-contained "Bonus Episode" featuring Max Caulfield, available for players who pre-order the Deluxe Edition season pass for Before The Storm. The episode will also made available to players purchasing the complete season.
Before The Storm was largely developed around Deck Nine Games' in-house engine called StoryForge. StoryForge's tools allowed the team to "create performances", which began with the creation of standard screenplay. The screenplay was later broken down according to the number of multiple story branches created for the game with gameplay elements built into the script itself. Characters could be placed into a scene during a running timeline where dialog cues and character actions could be hit.
"Leaked" Concept Art
June 1, 2017, reports of rumors concerning a "prequel to Life Is Strange", began circulating across major gaming websites. According to Kotaku, the information detailing the "prequel" stated that the project was reportedly unrelated to the second season game announced earlier in May of 2017. Additionally, the game was being developed by Deck Nine Games (formerly Idol Minds) apart from DONTNOD Entertainment, following a deal brokered between themselves and Square Enix.
During the 2017 Electronic Entertainment Expo, the teaser trailer for Before The Storm was unveiled during the Microsoft Studios press conference as a means to promote the latest iteration for the Xbox One, the Xbox One X.
The game was officially announced as a prequel, detailing the life of Chloe Price and Rachel Amber prior to the events of the original Life Is Strange. Before The Storm is a three episode series, slated for an August 31, 2017 release date. Square Enix confirmed that Before The Storm was "one of two Life is Strange projects", and that the "second season" of the game was under development by DONTNOD Entertainment.
Style and Theme
- Main article: Life Is Strange (video game)#Style and Theme
Before The Storm carries over various visual cues of the original Life Is Strange, which include painting-esque visuals and musical acts from independent or lesser known artists.
There are three visions of Before The Storm that will available for players to download at launch and following. The "Complete Season" of Before The Storm contains all three episodes of the game. The "Season Pass" of Before The Storm only includes "Episodes 2" and "Episode 3" if the first episode was purchased as a standalone, and does not contain "Episode 1" for purchase.
The "Deluxe Edition" of Before The Storm includes all three episodes, plus the "Bonus Episode" featuring Max Caulfield. Pre-ordering "Episode 1" will unlock the dynamic theme for the PlayStation 4 that will otherwise remain locked until the launch of the first episode on the 31st of August.
- For a individual breakdown of scores for each episode, visit the "Episode Guide" for the game.
As Before The Storm is an episodic game, an overall an comprehensive consensus of the game may not reached or aggregated until long after the game's release. As such, this subsection of the article will be updated as and when.
- "Numbers" by Daughter is featured in the E3 2017 teaser trailer.
- Nathan Prescott will reportedly make an appearance in Before The Storm according to an unidentified post on NeoGaf.
Behind the Scenes
- ↑ @ashly_burch: "Hey y'all, to the fans asking - I wasn't able to reprise my role as Chloe in Life is Strange: Before the Storm due to the SAG-AFTRA strike. Chloe means a lot to me. Grateful for the opportunity to consult on her character."