With Life is Strange 2 just around the corner, Square Enix and DONTNOD Entertainment had a marvelous idea to both tease and build our interest in the new game. At E3 they announced that a free demo, titled “The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit”, would be available for players to get stuck into prior to the release of the first episode of Life is Strange 2 in September. I managed to find a free evening to try out the demo and see what it had to offer.
In my coverage of the game, I have written as though Chris will likely be the main protagonist in the final game, however there is a chance that Chris will be the ‘sidekick’ of the main character so I have written this as though the overall story is focused on this young boy but I am fully prepared for him not to be.
Chris is a 9 year old boy who has a vivid and playful imagination as he plays with his toys and introduces us to his Super Hero persona of Captain Spirit. As we explore his room we learn more about this lad and the villains he has created to face off against. Before we are called out by his dad to go get our breakfast, it’s worth having a look around to interact with as much as possible, you can come back later but leaving it longer will allow you to start seeing a little more of the relationship Chris has with his father.
As you leave the bedroom, we learn that his mother is no longer around (although at this stage we don’t know the reason for this yet), that his father drinks and has hurt Chris while in a drunken rage. As he promises to take Chris to get a Christmas tree after the game, he begins drinking leaving Chris to do as he pleases. I decided to tidy up and do some more exploring as a way to tick off some of the things on the Awesome List such as battling the Water Eater (or turning on the boiler) or looking for Christmas presents. Chris also can start building his Super Hero persona and once the cape is on, you start to wonder if Chris really does have powers as options open up for you on certain items that may make you question if there is more than meets the eye or if he just has a great imagination.
You start to sense that all is not well in this household as it’s filled with sadness, anger and pain which all comes to a head, usually ending badly for Chris. You start to piece together why his mum isn’t around and that this is one of the reasons they had to move away and start a new life. I worried about walking around the house in case I did something to provoke his dad because I didn’t want want to end up being the cause of anything bad happening to the boy when he’s just trying to have fun and be a kid. You will have opportunities to explore which I would suggest you do and if you don’t manage to do everything, it’s worth taking another shot at it to see what else you can find.
I don’t want to go into too much detail as to what plays out as there are many of you who won’t want spoilers however I will say a little about my experience with the demo. I found it charming and endearing overall although I, as mentioned above, spent most of it trying to avoid doing anything that might result in Chris getting hurt. The subject matter is something which should always be carefully considered and I will be interested to see how the developers handle it in Life is Strange 2 as it seems that this will be an important part of the story we follow through in the game.
For those of you who are familiar with Life is Strange, you’ll be glad to see the return of the lovely graphics and art style, the musical interludes which allow you to take a little time out, the episodic releases and the game play mechanics. these aspects continue through into this demo and I assume into the second game when it’s released. But there are also little things which callback to the Life if Strange universe, including a book by a certain person whose name you may recognise and it turns out Chris’s mum went to Blackwell Academy so keeping a look out for this and other little nuggets of information is worthwhile.
The other aspect not listed of course is are characters that you’re interested in and care about. Already, I feel very protective of Chris and I personally am looking forward to seeing where this story will take us as I imagine it will be incredibly emotional and hard hitting but I do also wonder if there will be some sort of unexpected twist which will throw everything we think we know out of whack. But if he isn’t the protagonist of the story, I may end up being concerned that he will end up a victim of something in the end that will intertwine with the overall plot much like Chloe and Max in the first game.
The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit is definitely worth a look if you are looking forward to Life is Strange 2 as it is a nice introduction to our new potential protagonists. I for one am looking forward to seeing where this new story will take us as after the emotional roller-coasters of Life is Strange and Before The Storm, following a 9 year old boy as he moves between reality and his imagination could be truly heart wrenching or heart warming depending on the overall story if he turns out to have super powers or be friends with someone who does. I imagine there will be a few theories along the way and if you have any that you want to share, be sure to leave us a comment and let us know your thoughts!
The demo is available for free on PC, PS4 and Xbox One now and Life is Strange 2 will be released 27th September and is available for pre-order now.