Life is Strange Episode 5 Review: Consequences

With just as many questions remaining as answered, Max must face both the impending catastrophe her powers foretold and escalating danger of a much more personal nature.

I’ll try to stay as spoiler free as possible, but will be sharing some thoughts about the series as a whole and how it all came together.

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Episode 5 picks up right where the gut punch finale of episode 4 left off. The villain’s motivations are relayed by an admitted bit of “monologuing,” but it fits the character to want to gloat / explain as well as the situation Max is in. What follows are some interesting illustrations of the complications and limitations of Max’s powers, with a couple extremely clever complications. It was also nice to see choices from previous episodes remain somewhat relevant during these sections. I appreciate what they tried to do here, and was fairly riveted for the first half of the episode.

I became much less enamored once the stealth sections began. The intent for symbolism and atmosphere was good, but the execution was not. I couldn’t wait for this part of the game to be over.

I had a good guess about where all of this was going, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. There’s a lot of discussion to be had about the possible endings, but without getting into specifics I’ll say the finale is both fitting and a little disappointing. Certain things left in mystery were more interesting to me than some of the story threads heavily focused on, and there were definitely some convenient oversights made for the sake of plot progression. Also after an entire series of doing the “player’s choices have effects” thing better than I’ve EVER seen before, a single choice ends up mattering more than all the others.

All that said, there was internal logic to the crescendo and decision point, and the drama and emotional tension was sufficiently built to present a heart wrenching moment.

Life is Strange as a whole is something I’m glad I played and would readily recommend. It’s not perfect and the ending(s) will be off putting for some, but those same endings and the events that precede them are well done and thought provoking. There was more potential to Life is Strange than what was realized, but what’s here is still extremely good.

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