The Farewell bonus episode of Life Is Strange: Before the Storm is short but should be required playing for fans of the series. A thoughtful well written glimpse into Max and Chloe’s life before it got so strange.
Before the Storm‘s bonus episode doesn’t feature the series’ best writing or any pivotal choices, but it all works as intended here. It’s just a fond farewell to a friend. One that gives players one more opportunity to see two of their favorite characters interacting with each other, and one final chance for the player to say their own goodbyes.
If you’re a more hardcore [Life is Strange] fan, this episode is certainly worth a playthrough as it provides a more relaxed and carefree, yet melancholic and tragic, epilogue to the Max and Chloe saga of Life is Strange.
This bonus episode can't be missed by fans and should convince them to go into the Deluxe Edition of Before the Storm if they didn't. Farewell is a great way - carefree and melancholic - to say goodbye to Max and Chloe.
If you’re an absolute die-hard fan of Life Is Strange, which you likely are if you’re considering the deluxe edition, then jump right in and say your own goodbyes to Max and Chloe. However, if you’ve not played both the original series and Before the Storm in their entirety, Farewell likely won’t resonate with you in the same way.
Remains one of my favorite series to date. You can actually start here before the original cause its a prequel beginning to end. But I Loved the first just a bit more, so probably start there. I feel like this was almost as great. I got the same emotional rollercoaster which I loved in the first. I just missed Max from the other game. You get emotionally attached to all the characters. Max was just so relatable to myself so she was my favorite. You will relate to one character at least because their attitudes are very realistic. This series is a beautiful experience. Every gamer should atleast try both but this game definitely gets a bit lifted up if you play the previous original first. Still great tho. And if you get the deluxe you will get an episode with Max! So go deluxe.
Very short but very meaningful fo create the full-arc and have the complete set of events. Fun, not too complex, not containing collectibles like the other 2 games, but will for sure have an impact and help the player have the complete picture of events. It it less focused on decisions, even though they have consequences in a way, no reverse time or special mechanism like backtalk. Just explore to understand how Max and Chloe were when they were best friends, and why the split between them was so painful.
Moreover we are striked again with very good soundtrack choice, especially for the ending. I could not see the game complete without this episode and honestly I would have had included in the Before the Storm default package, or even give it for free to attract the players, as they did with the first episode from the original Life is Strange. I don't also understand why it is presented as the last chapter to play, it would have made more sense to at least play it first, before the "Before the Storm" other chapters, it makes it like: what happened before the before the storm... But still enjoyable and totally worth it.
For obvious reasons (it's a prequel, it's short, setting) this episode is considerably weaker than its predecessors. But Farewell isn't a full game, just a simple nostalgic send-off. And as that it's okay.
See bottom for tl;dr and positivity!
Life is Strange has, unfortunately, not gone out with the bang alluded to in the opening scene of the episode. Rather, it was more akin to the sad, slow sputtering let out by a slightly underfilled balloon when released. Being a bonus episode, it is short and very bare-boned. I assume the team working on it did put in effort, but it simply didn't have the manpower or budget put behind a normal, full-release episode. It was nice to have Ashly Burch and Hannah Telle back, though both seemed a bit unsure exactly how to voice their younger selves, with several takes having them slip fully back into their adult Max and Chloe voices. It was almost as if no two lines sounded quite the same, especially early in the episode. On top of that, these two make up two thirds of the voice acting ensemble for the entire episode, and account for about 90% of the dialogue, with the rest coming from a tape recorder. I am quite impressed with Burch's writing, however. Given the limited budget and scope of the episode, she did a commendable job.
That said, this episode is short and has minimal payoff for fans of the series, and if you're just a casual fan then I'd give this one a skip, as to really get anything out of it you will need to have played the original Life is Strange. (Though if you haven't, what are you doing here?! Go play it right this instant!) I explored every nook and cranny of each scene and got through it in about an hour and a half. If you did a casual playthrough you might get 45 minutes to an hour out of it. The plot is worth a few laughs if you are a fan of Max and Chloe's (Pricefield) relationship, and it does have some heartwarming moments, but there are no real stakes, the entire episode is just two teenagers reminiscing about the past and Max worrying about her move to Seattle. The "twist" will be spoiled for any fans of the series at about the midway point, and also poses some continuity issues, which I won't get into so I don't spoil the ending for anyone who somehow doesn't see it coming.
One thing that I myself didn't see coming is that the music is extremely sparse. There are perhaps 4-5 tracks in the entire episode, including ambiental music. Given that Life is Strange has always been centered around its music, walking around in complete silence for half of its swan song was a bit off-putting. However, I do have to mention that the overly-dramatic attic music did get a chuckle out of me. Another not so pleasant surprise is that some of the voice lines were not very well edited. I usually don't notice these things, but there was a very distinct echo on some lines, as well as others having odd muffling effects that seemed very out of place.
The one saving grace for this episode is the characters. Burch gave a strong showing under difficult circumstances with a tiny budget here. I believe she was the sole credited writer, and she did a great job with what she had. While the story itself was honestly not interesting, she did a wonderful job expressing Max and Chloe's characters in the writing. I was a bit befuddled that the episode ended when it did, but I would assume it was a budgetary issue. It would have been very interesting to have a real conversation in the epilogue. Though perhaps this is Deck Nine's plot calling card, as the ending to Before the Storm was the same, there was no dialogue.
All in all, as a bonus episode, it is passable. However, I'm reviewing this while putting a mirror up to the series (plural) that came before it, and it just doesn't quite live up. While I respect the love that the cast and crew obviously have for the series, the budgetary constraints clearly caused some problems here. Between the sparse audio, middle of the road graphics, and meandering plot, I can only recommend this episode to superfans who need one last shot of Pricefield in their veins, because it will fulfill that need. To everyone else, you won't be missing anything by not playing this. It was obviously designed with longtime superfans in mind, and it does a decent job catering to them, but it won't offer anything to newer fans, or even those who have only played Before the Storm.
P.S.- Life is Strange honestly felt like a once in a generation game. It had its issues of course, but between the developers' community relations and willingness to go where no developer has before in terms of subject matter, it was great to experience. These have been the best narrative based games I have played, and while I may always seem critical, I simply want to give constructive criticism to see the series improve. I wish the DONTNOD and Deck Nine teams all the best going forward, and I look forward to reviewing Season 2.
P.P.S.- Dear DONTNOD, If this was a tryout to bring Burch on as a writer for Season 2, I would definitely say she passed.
Pirate induced smiles: 5/5
SummaryExperience Max and Chloe’s childhood friendship in Farewell the bonus episode to Life is Strange Before the Storm. Ashly Burch and Hannah Telle reprise their roles in an emotional and nostalgic trip down memory lane.