Life Is Strange was one of the surprise highlights of 2015, exploring an intimate and personal story across its five episodes, with an admirable emphasis on character arcs and relationships over puzzles and plot.
That’s why Life Is Strange: Before the Storm was such a welcome surprise when it was announced at E3 2017, with the three-episode prequel promising to explore events from before original protagonist Max’s return to the town of Arcadia Bay.
It’s worth noting that Before the Storm is under development by a new team, Deck Nine, and isn’t the same as the Life Is Strange sequel under development by the original team at Dontnod Studios – that’s still a way off.
Here’s everything we know about the game so far, including gameplay details, episode release dates, and the extra content that’ll definitely make you want to buy the Deluxe Edition.
- Life Is Strange: Before the Storm Episode 1 release date: 31 August 2017
- Formats: PS4, Xbox One, PC
- Developer: Deck Nine
- Price: £13.99/$16.99
- Pre-order: PS4, Xbox One, PC
When are the episode release dates?
We don’t yet have release dates for the other two episodes, but will update this article when we do – expect to see a few months between each episode though.
What are the different versions?
There are two main ways to buy Life Is Strange: Before the Storm.
The first is just to buy the complete season, which includes all three main episodes, and costs £13.99/$16.99. You can pre-order that right now from the official PlayStation and Xbox stores, or from Steam or Green Man Gaming for PC.
However, there’s also a more expensive Deluxe Edition, which includes exclusive content that you won’t be able to buy any other way – and you really might want it.
The Deluxe version costs £19.99/$24.99, but for that you get the full season, some bonus outfits, a Mixtape Mode that lets you put together playlists from the soundtrack, and – most excitingly – a bonus fourth episode, Farewell, which lets you play as original protagonist Max.
What will the gameplay be like?
Before the Storm is a three-part prequel, set a few years before the events of the original Life Is Strange.
This time around you’ll play as Chloe (rather than Max), and the game will explore her relationship with Rachel, the girl who’s missing during the events of the original game.
Because you’re not playing as Max, you have no access to her time rewinding powers, but instead you can use Chloe’s Backtalk ability, “a risk/reward conversation mode that allows Chloe to use her barbed tongue to provoke or get her way.”
There’s one other major change, which is that Chloe will have a new voice actor. Original actress Ashly Burch won’t be reprising her role because of the ongoing SAG-AFTRA voice actor strike, though she has consulted on the character. Chloe will instead be voiced by Rhianna DeVries.
If you want a more detailed sense of how Before the Storm will play, your best bet is to watch the 20-minute gameplay video released by publisher Square Enix, which gives a good look at what to expect.