Life is Strange 2 strikes out on its own with the first episode, Roads. In an amazing and captivating debut, we meet the new central characters and begin an immensely interesting (and sad) tale we can't wait to continue.
‘Roads’ is a heart-breaking leg of an emotional journey that never feels limited by its medium. I’ve played seasons of other choice-driven narrative games that had less emotion and heart than this five-hour odyssey. With Life is Strange 2, DONTNOD has upgraded and refined every element that made its forebear successful, whilst sprinkling some magical new additions into the mix to create an essential genre-pushing experience that isn’t just for fans.
Developer Dontnod used this first episode as an opportunity to get right at the themes of Life is Strange 2. There's no time wasted and that's an effective way to get our attention. This is going to be a roadtrip that's worth looking forward to, even if it's born out of some of the most tragic circumstances imaginable.
Compared to some of the “growing pains” that the first season of Life is Strange went through in its early episodes–especially its infamous reliance on “hella” cliched-sounding teen lingo–Life is Strange 2‘s first episode is a confident and engaging piece of storytelling, and seeing how Sean and Daniel’s relationship develops over the course of the first episode already has me excited to see the rest of the long road ahead.
Episode 1: Roads is a shining example of a developer that has built on the success of the first title and only continued to improve with the experience it has under its belt in episodic gaming. The developer has stayed true to its roots with Life Is Strange 2, revisiting its tried-and-tested formula and adjusting it in a way that perfectly works with the new set of wonderful characters in the universe. The studio’s willingness to integrate social commentary on topics such as police misconduct, racism and gun violence is a resounding statement of a developer bold enough to play its hand in topical areas of discussion and pull it off with complete success.
One episode in and I don’t miss Max and Chloe at all. Following Sean and Daniel’s story is already gripping, happy and saddening, and we’re only just getting started. No, there’s isn’t too much in the way of game here, but it’s only the beginning and I’m really looking forward to where the Diaz boy’s journey takes us. That is, if my heart can take it.