Life Is Strange: Watch The Very First Gameplay Video and Learn More About Dontnod’s “AAA Indie” Game

Life Is Strange surprised everyone with an unexpected debut and an intriguing plot, but there’s much more to it that meets the eye.

Today I sat in a presentation with Creative Director Jean-Maxime Moris and Game Director Michael Koch, and not only I had the privilege to be between the first to see the game in action (but don’t worry, you’re going to get the same chance just as soon as you scroll all the way down to the video), but I also learned quite a lot about its gameplay, which is very similar to classic point and click adventures with a quite large twist.

The protagonist Max has a very interesting power: she can rewind time. If something goes horribly wrong you can just put everything back like it was before the disaster, and no one will be the wiser.

This allows the player to explore multiple branches in the story. You don’t like how things went? You can simply rewind time and do it differently. This can sound like a cheat, but there’s much more hidden in the intricate plot.

You could change something that seems bad in the short term to a more favorable outcome, but that could very well cause a disaster in the long run, and you have no way to predict that.

Normally you can rewind time up to the latest checkpoint, but Moris mentioned that there will be moments in which you’ll be able to do much more, even if he declined to provide specifics.

One of the most interesting elements of the game is definitely its environmental design, showing backdrops designed with great care and outstanding level of detail. Every texture is actually hand-painted, giving Life Is Strange a sweet look that resembles concept artwork.

Quite a lot of the elements of the background can be interacted with, and provide a deeper look into the game’s world and on its characters, but not everything is mandatory, and you can either speed faster through the story or play slower to check out the myriad of items, getting a more extensive picture of Max’s surroundings, friends and enemies.

Life is Strange has been defined by its creators an “AAA Indie,” as it retains the indie style and creativity, but has the graphics of an AAA games and the full support of Square Enix as a publisher.

The game is going to be released in episodes, following the latest trend for adventure games, and five are planned at the moment. You’ll have to play them all in order, because the consequences for every single action you perform will carry over from episode to episode in an extensive butterfly effect.

Remember Me was definitely an underrated game, but if what I’ve seen today is any indication, Life is Strange looks like a more polished and tighter experience, with an extremely interesting and diverse cast, and a story that intrigued me in just a few minutes.

If you want to see it in action for yourself, you can check out the very first gameplay footage below, and hear Creative Director Jean-Maxime Moris introduce its main concepts.

Join the Discussion

  • Anarky

    Actually sounds pretty interesting.

  • Toads

    Pretty boring…….Just saying

    • Blackmaile

      When the PS4 came out i was all down for indie games.. Im sick to death of them now. This game looks boring as hell!

      • Giuseppe Nelva

        Not everyone is bored by games in which you don’t mow down armies of baddies.

        • JonJJon

          I don’t always want to be holding a gun. Will keep an eye on this as I loved Remember Me and like the look of this. On another relaxing serene game, looking forward to playing Journey again with the DS4 on PS4 🙂

        • Budgiecat

          It’s cause of the West’s perverse gun culture fetish and ADD….

          • TheBlackRabbit

            now budgiekitten we just like different things.

          • Budgiecat

            Giuseppe needs to know these things…and I’m the cat to inform him…

        • Blackmaile

          FPS is my least favorite genre.. im a JRPG guy.

      • Porcu Peth

        “Life is Strange has been defined by its creators an “AAA Indie,” as it retains the indie style and creativity, but has the graphics of an AAA games and the full support of Square Enix as a publisher.”

      • Delsin Boss

        i hear you body
        you know, indie games are good, but we have soooooo Much indie games on ps4. i’m tired of them too.

        • They Call Me Senpai

          There are plenty other games to play.

          • Blackmaile


          • Delsin Boss

            Indeed lol

        • Blackmaile

          Im with you 100%

      • Hey noob, this isn’t an indie title.

        • Blackmaile

          “Life is Strange has been defined by its creators an “AAA Indie,”

          I hate making the stupid look even more stupid.

          • I watched it. I don’t consider it an indie title when you have a studio developing it. Its not just a few people. That is how he wants to define it but that is not what an indie title is. You can take things for what people say for face value or you can use come context.

          • Blackmaile

            Oh because you dont consider it a indie title it isnt a indie game? Developers say otherwise dummy.

      • Vulcan Spectre

        Luckily you don’t need to buy indie games. They will be made for those that want them whilst AAA developers will continue to make AAA games. If you would rather wait for these big AAA games to release rather then fill the gap with indie titles here and there, so be it. Same goes for all the other indie haters out there. I wouldn’t call this a flat out indie game either, it’s more of a hybrid as described above. Including the style of an indie game with the levels of creativity we have come to expect from indie developers but also including AAA graphics.

        I’ve owned Rogue Legacy for no longer then a week and it has already become one of my most played PS4 titles, and you don’t even want to see my time played on Don’t Starve or Resogun. Last generation? I had nothing to fill the wait between AAA games. Now I get a new innovative title every week. It’s heaven for gamers who like variety.

        • Gamist

          It’s sad that they think the world revolves around them, and that Sony is the one hiring devs to make Indies games when that’s not how it works.
          When I see a new Indie game being introduced, to me it means some small gamers/designers wanted to make games and share their idea with the world – that’s it!
          If I wish to make a game someday, I would gladly start with an Indie title. 🙂

      • Guiseppe Mario Mazzola

        That why i fear of getting a ps4 right now.I like the idea of the ps4.I just dont want my ps4 to sit there and catch more dust then it being used.If this game goes to xbox one indie then maybe i will take alook.But as for indie games being boreing on ps4 i would agree with you every time i see one my mind get’s put in to this vision of wtf am i playing lmao.It’s kind cool but kinda nut’s.I dont think indie games are bad from sony.I just feel that sony is shoveling indie games on us more then working on new AAA ms is doing.If anything ms is for sure doing a really good job in the AAA deprtment and exclusives part of xbox one.over sony.

        • Blackmaile

          Even though there is loads of indie games on the PS4.. PS4 still has more and better exclusives.. Thats not me being a fanboy its just me being honest.

        • demfax

          PS4 has many great games that gamers love. That’s why it’s 10+ million in sales and growing. Sony’s large number of well funded 1st parties will ensure PS4 has a ton of great AAA exclusives, as many or more than PS3.

          PS4/Sony exclusives Jun-Dec: The Last of Us Remastered, Driveclub, LittleBigPlanet 3, Infamous: First Light, Samurai Warriors 4, Natural Doctrine, Guilty Gear Xrd, Singstar, and lots of indies (Resogun DLC, Counterspy, Hohokum, Velocity 2X, etc.).

          PS4/Sony exclusives 2015 (announced): Bloodborne, The Order, Ratchet & Clank Remastered, Uncharted 4, Let It Die, Deep Down, and lots of indies.

          PS4 has 35+ AAA games from July to December 2014. Most of those are multiplatform but there’s no shortage of AAA games for PS4 owners.

          PS4 games rated 73+ on Metacritic not on XB1: Final Fantasy XIV, Resogun, Transistor, MLB 14, Injustice, Trine 2: Complete Story, TowerFall Ascension, Infamous 2nd Son, Don’t Starve, flower, War Thunder, DC Universe Online, Dead Nation, Dynasty Warriors 8, MotoGP 14, Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee, TLOU Remastered, The Swapper, Stick It To The Man, ZEN Pinball 2, Star Wars Pinball, The Pinball Arcade, Pure Pool, Fez, Rogue Legacy, Sound Shapes, Sportsfriends, PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate, SteamWorld Dig, Awesomenauts Assemble, Titan Attacks, Killzone: Shadow Fall, Escape Plan, Outlast: Whistleblower.

          1st/2nd party studios include Japan Studio, Polyphony Digital, Naughty Dog, SCE Bend, SCE San Diego, SCE Santa Monica, Sucker Punch, Pixel Opus, Evolution Studios, Guerrilla Games, Guerrilla Cambridge, SCE London, Media Molecule, Ready at Dawn, Quantic Dream, etc.

          Sony’s largest 1st party studios like Naughty Dog, Guerilla Games, and Santa Monica are working on unrevealed AAA games. Expect big 1st party AAA reveals in the future. Sony’s 1st parties are well funded and the games division is making a profit.

          Sony showed the following games at Gamescom 2014:

          Sony exclusives: The Tomorrow Children, Until Dawn, Tearaway Unfolded, Alienation, WiLD, Rime, DriveClub, The Order: 1886, Bloodborne, LittleBigPlanet 3

          Timed console exclusives: Dreamfall Chapters, HellBlade, The Vanishing Of Ethan Carter, Volume, HollowPoint, Runemaster, Nom Nom Galaxy, Pix the Cat, Papers Please, In Space We Brawl, Ether One, Qube 2, Snow

          Multiplatform games: Silent Hills (P.T.), FarCry 4, Destiny, Shadow Of Mordor

          PS4 has a steady stream of games all year. According to Listwar it’s now 100 PS4 games to 59 XB1 games. The fact is PS4 has nearly twice as many games as XB1, and many of those are rated 73+ on Metacritic.

          Xbox has good exclusive games like DR3, Forza 5, Forza Horizon 2, Titanfall, Sunset Overdrive, Halo Collection, Quantum Break, Gears of War, Halo 5, Project Spark, Tomb Raider, etc. Both consoles have good exclusive games, it’s only fanboys trying to trash one or the other.

    • Delsin Boss

      did you play it already?

  • Dadrixx

    Yeeaaaaa, French Touch !
    Anyways, I’m glad Square Enix support these guys. Remember Me was pretty good in my opinion, even though it has its flaws, so I’m interested in this one.

    • david61350137

      Start working from home! Great job for students, stay-at-home moms or anyone needing an extra income… You only need a computer and a reliable internet connection… Make $90 hourly and up to $12000 a month by following link …………,.,..

    • jamesanthony88

      Really? To me the, the voice actor playing the girl sounds like an actor from one of those horrible 3rd rate pre-employment orientation videos from the 90’s. This has ‘meh’ written all over it.

      • Dadrixx

        Exagerating much ?
        Anyways, it may be “meh” to you, but that doesn’t mean it’s a fact.

  • themugen

    looks great. day 1 for me.

  • I’m interested in this. Now I want to Max and Chloe’s interaction with one another now.

    • Budgiecat

      I smell Yuri….and SJW game journalist bait….

      • Will probably see the SJWs coming out once more info comes out. I can smell Yuri too.

        • Budgiecat

          It’s a distinct smell for both. Smells like old socks and vinegar…

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  • GamerLegend

    Finally, now some gamers will complain less about AAA or indie when there’s a (AAA + indie) game.

  • Jecht_Sin

    “Remember me” was great! With its technical faults but very good nonetheless. I’ve quite enjoyed it. This looks even more promising than a sequel.

  • Emirati

    Sounds boring tbh
    And the Character reminds me of Elizabeth (BioShock infinite)
    Which was also A boring game to me 😛

    • metalman5150

      Must be difficult to please, you, good sir.

      • Emirati

        it had some great moments in the beginning but,
        the Vigors were practically useless,
        Aiming was so bad
        Too much running around (go to this place, go to that place, etc..)
        it had a twisty story and ending, i didn’t like that.

  • Jamal

    Looks ok, need to see more.

  • Mike Jones

    so the walking dead…only instead of surviving the zombie apocalypse,you look at mac and cheese in your kitchen and do some memory remixes from remember me…..yay!?

    • Albee

      In other words, completely different…yay!

      • Mike Jones

        well a gunshot wound is completely different than cancer,still won’t find me standing in line for it….

  • Nuragna

    Square is Making There very own Heavy Rain/Beyond..Not a bad thing but I wouldn’t call it original as he said..I’m soo getting this because I love this kind of game xD

    • Budgiecat

      In Beyond, there were hardly any visual markers..

      • Nuragna

        This is why I said beyond and heavy rain ..because I think heavy rain did have a lot (: the only part that reminds me of beyond is the “playing a young girl with time kinda stopping/pausing” the heavy rain part is the detective aspect (: so I’m thinking this will be a winner..need to see more though 😀

        • Budgiecat

          I feel like visual markers insult the intelligence of the gamer and kills the element of exploration and discovery…

          • Nuragna

            I agree /: what happened to throwing me into a new world and letting me explore its wonders…I mean a hint here and there wouldn’t hurt if the game could scene that your stuck or something..but throwing a million on screen arrows with text takes away from the experience…imo

          • Budgiecat

            Another World
            Megaman 2


          • Nuragna

            ICO = GOLD
            Megaman2 = GOLD

            Never played Another World will have to check that out

  • Budgiecat

    they need to up the 3D render visual detail so it mirrors that hand drawn concept art screenshot…

  • Graxiplon

    Is there a release date for this yet?

    • Giuseppe Nelva

      not yet

  • metalman5150

    I am the type of person that zones out into games, so I think I will enjoy this game.

  • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

    I like the idea of rewinding to get the outcome I want. Definitely a must buy.

  • futurepixels

    Not going to lie, I am probably going to play this game because I like games designed by french teams, and the Chloe character is foxy.

  • MindBodySoul

    Very neat art style. I appreciate games for their stories the older I get. This looks like one of those games.

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