The Life Piratic with Max Caufield

Gaming, Graphic Arts, Human Behavior, Literature, Social Issues, Technology
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Farewell Title Screen

Farewell? This is just the beginning

A Grand Day Out was surely an alternative title they were kicking around as Colorado-based Deck Nine was thinking of apt and succinct labels for this episode. Farewell was a brief yet universal adventure. It is a tale of friendship, wonder, science, adventure, love, and death.

An Experiment

Always prodding at the natural world

It is a very appropriately extra and final episode that, in my humble estimation, should conclude this emotionally draining story. Seriously, how much longer do the makers of this game plan on so directly dealing with the spectrum of emotions? How much time did they think we should spend observing the human experience and analyzing our best and worst aspects in such great detail? Will we ever truly understand the mind of a preteen girl whose propensity to manipulate time only causes more chaos in a world she desperately wishes to correct? I do not know the answers to these questions…

In truth, I have found this series to demand much of the player, or user if you will. I guess they are consciously trying to push the boundaries of the visual novel as a game. They are also much enjoying carving out 3D models of prepubescent teens with such meticulous craftspersonship.

A Good 3D Model

The very 3D model of a young girl

Much of the action takes place in a familiar setting from which you have found it hard to escape throughout the series. Chloe’s house is something of a cross-dimensional nexus point. Cross-temporal… or something. In this episode, you are spirited-back into a time when Chloe was a good student, had not yet dyed her hair, and still had her father. You are shown how all of those things changed around the same time.

There is much history in Chloe’s room. You will relearn things you never knew you never knew. Oh yes, I’m talking about one’s mind being blown at that kind of level. You will see things you thought you understood but realize you really do not. Like that scholarship for Chloe from the very Prescott family whose demonic spawn will spell her demise. I mean, talk about irony.

Bedside Musings

She has not even begun to question her beliefs

I continue to be impressed by the imagination and sheer prowess of these two young apprentices. Sure, there is a stock-like element to all of the antics they pulled in their youth, what with the comic-strip drawing, the making up of alternate rules to board games, recording silly audio tapes, setting up scavenger hunts around the house… oh the delightful days of youth.

But the level of discovery that occurs in this episode should resonate with anyone who has been dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge and happiness, and has realized their inevitable fusion since youth. Humans all over the world and throughout time have been inclined to use technology to document their exploits via paper, magnetic tape, photograph, time capsule, the landscape, you name it. This story is meant to be a microcosm of that general urge to make yourself known and have fun while doing it.

A Letter from the Past

A story retold over and over.

Our knowledge of history is contingent upon the most random of people jotting down their ideas. Multiple unrelated sources from people talking about what they expect and observe provide us the deepest insight into what life was like thousands of years ago. It’s important to remember how the local urge to create and take note of what is happening is just as essential as what we dig up from the past. What you make can be imbued with more meaning when you realize it is part of a… well, dare I say it… Neverending Story.

A World from the Past

Maybe this world can still exist?

I must continue to commend this series for instilling peace and hope, which I find to be the ultimate message of Life is Strange. The overall moral of these stories is in agreement with a principle that I try to stress a lot, which is that of autonomy. It is a message very well imbued in other stories which is that you should not let the chaos that surrounds you dictate how your life should be. Chloe has all the necessary abilities to be very successful and confident, but the sudden shifts that derailed her really threw her off the proverbial track.

Sadly, Max’s efforts to save Chloe only caused more problems for others. There are some battles you will not be able to win, but Max was still able to give the right people a heads up to prevent chaos that would have occurred had it not been for her intervention.

The lesson of choosing your battles wisely is somewhat revisited in a different way in this bonus episode. Max is hesitant to tell Chloe she will be leaving soon because Max fears it will devastate her friend, but when she finally just tells the truth, she realizes there is nothing to fear and it is best to be on the same level. And so, there is no solution that will solve all problems. You just have to push forward with the truth and ally with others who are bound to stay in the light.

What say you?