Life is Strange True Colors - Game Infinite Review (Non-Spoiler)
I went into Life is Strange True Colors with a whole heap of hesitation and low expectations. This Life is Strange wasn't being developed by DONTNOD so it could be anything. Plus, despite the first one being S tier quality, one of my all time favorites, the sequels and spin offs have been "meh". I hated LIS 2 with a passion, and so far all I've wanted is for them to stop "reinventing the wheel" and just give us more of the only thing that has worked so far with more Max and Chloe. I was a big proponent that all their experimentation was unnecessary when they already had an amazing set of characters and gameplay mechanic. Max and Chloe on their time traveling adventure for LIS1 is just 10/10 that it has always surprised me how we keep getting weird left field, meh, or bad games. So when True Colors was announced with a new protagonist and a new setting, I groaned again. I rolled my eyes and said "Why?" Why purposely ignore your 10/10 foundation and once again start from scratch? When they talked about the new power for this game, I remember I audibly groaned. I mean, Empathy? Really? What kind of weird "feelings" game is this going to be? How do they have the option to do more Time Travel and decide on "feeling people's feelings." Uhg.
I pretty much had zero expectations for LIS: TC. While I expected little, there was still a little part of me that just wanted to give LIS one more chance. It didn't deserve it after LIS2, but I wanted to give it anyways.
I'm glad I did, because True Colors manages to do a major wheel screeching course correction to the quality of the original. It takes what works for the original and manages to tell a new story, while avoiding the shortcomings of the awful sequel.
It avoids the issues the sequel had like not having the main player control the new "power", and it avoids hours of hours walking simulator. This game never feels like you are forced into boring filler sections of just "walking". These narrative focused games need to make up for the lack of "combat/objective" gameplay and make up for it with dialogue and story and explanation. That was something the first one had that this managed to bring back. It also needs to succeed in making us care for the main character, and this one succeeds in this quickly. It needs to have quality relationships and interactions with characters and it nails that.
Also, the Life is Strange games always deal with "life sucks sometimes" message, and True Colors deals with this in a way that feels solid. Where LIS2 has a depressing "everyone is evil and the whole world just sucks all the time" message, True Colors manages to take arguably one of our most kicked down protagonists, and manages to inject some hope. Life is Strange games need to have a glimmer of hope and True Colors brings it. Alex Chen, the protagonist in LIS:TC is someone who has experienced a lot of loss, a lot of "unfairness" in life and in the course of the game. However, through all that she brings a sense of hope and optimism for the future. She never quits. She is lifting others up when she has every excuse to be the most trodden down of all of them.
I will also say that while at first, her powers seemed boring when explained to us during the initial trailers, but in practice turned out to be way cooler than I ever would have guessed. It more like a hybrid between Deanna Troi and straight up Mind Reading which offered diverse gameplay. The powers also impact the story in a quality way.
LIS is also known for interesting mini games, and I will say that the LARP is one of my favorite so far. Avoiding spoilers, the final twist ending is one you will not see coming, but when you do, you see it coming before Alex does and it just hits you in the feels, HARD. LIS:TC is a game you should seriously add to your library for 2021 as one of the best experiences so far this year.