The decision-based adventure game series is back with a new story centered around a small-town mystery. Life is Strange: True Colors is available now on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC. The game developer Deck Nine Games has already received very positive responses.
The players play Alex Chen, a young woman with a troubled childhood who comes to the fictional mining town of Haven Springs, Colorado to live with her brother Gabe. After a mysterious accident, Alex uses her supernatural empathic abilities to bring up the town’s secrets. Haven Springs is arguably the best setting in any Life is Strange game. If all that sounds like classic Life is Strange, it’s similar with a female protagonist, the ability to wield a special power, and a return to a small community of characters.
Although the story sometimes feels like it’s moving at too quick a pace.
True Colors feels a world away from the multi-state trek of Life is Strange 2, instead deciding to contain the story to the center of Haven Springs.
The story is driven by the player’s choice and is perfectly balanced and written.
The gameplay is of about 14 hours and is divided into 5 episodes which can be binge played. This time around Square Enix released all the chapters at once and is pretty quick to finish the game. The episodes are well-paced and are full of suspense with no recap of the previous episode in the intro. Like the other games in the series, True Colors is a storytelling and decision-making game. The extra RPG element makes True Colors different. Alex has an unexplained superpower: she can perceive strong emotions through colorful auras that outline people around her.
The players can interact with objects and NPCs around them and explore a lot in depth. Furthermore, the choices and decisions are impactful and drive the story. As always players can get a different ending based on their choices. Although True Colors’ core gameplay mechanics aren’t drastically different from its predecessors. There are clever mini-games woven into the narrative around Haven Springs. There’s also more freedom to explore the setting than in past Life Is Strange games. The town with cool shops and bars, and interesting people are worth exploring. In Life is Strange, Max could rewind time, and Life is Strange 2 featured telekinesis. In True Colors, Alex’s power is empathy- She can see what’s behind someone’s anger, sadness, fear, etc.
The journal carries memory logs and character insights. Deck Nine cared about the facial expressions and body language of the NPCs. The emotional connection it creates between the players and the characters is truly overwhelming.
The graphics of the franchise has improved a lot. Surprisingly the game is not very demanding. It runs smoothly on consoles and PC at 1080p and 30 fps in 4K. Although these types of games are well playable at 30 fps. The visuals are good and have very sparse glitches. Cutscenes are incredible and nicely designed by Deck Nine.
Character detailing is precise as well as the street and shop. The background is pretty well set in Colorado with mountains and a lake by the city of Haven Springs. Comparing the character model of Steph Gingrich in Before the Storm and True Colors, it feels greater attention to detail has been applied. At some point, it doesn’t feel like a Life is a Strange game due to its visual improvements. Deck Nine has not only handled the story with care but also the graphics, which is the best in the series. Cinematics is greatly improved than the previous titles. Although there are few glitches that shall get a fix in the later patches.
Music plays a big role in Life Is Strange: True Colors just as in any storytelling game. Players will experience music in the game in a few different ways beyond the soundtrack in the background. Players can experience Alex’s journey not only visually but also auditorily. The soundtrack also features original songs and covers created for True Colors and is available on Spotify. The sound plays an important role and connects with the players. Further the protagonist, Alex is a musician, plays guitar, and sings. The voice acting is quite well and adjusts to the characters.
Life is Strange True Colors is a fantastic game with the best graphics in the series and a well-written story. The game connects emotionally and every choice makes an impact on the consequences. Deck Nine has gone beyond to create such a great game. Although it is priced at a bit high value of 60 dollars. The buyers of this genre will be highly satisfied spending that amounts on this game. Moreover, this is a visual masterpiece and surely the best game in the Life Is Strange series.