After the large misstep that was Dontnod Leisure’s Life Is Unusual 2, which traded within the small-town attraction of Arcadia Bay for an ill-advised highway journey, Sq. Enix’s journey collection is lastly again on monitor with Life Is Unusual: True Colours. Deck 9 Video games, the Colorado-based crew behind Earlier than the Storm in addition to this fourth entry, has taken inspiration from its house state and created a predictable story, however one that’s crammed with relatable characters.
Alex Chen, the collection’ newest protagonist, finds herself in a brand new city catching up together with her estranged older brother Gabe. Household relationships are by no means fairly rosy in Life Is Unusual and there’s way more baggage to unpack than Alex’s lone suitcase would recommend. An early dying (one explicitly spoiled within the trailers) units the tone for True Colours, which turns right into a detective story amongst Alex’s seek for self-discovery and a hope to lastly slot in someplace.
A part of her ostracization stems from her superpower as she will be able to learn minds — nicely, form of. Alex can sense highly effective feelings and typically can expertise flashbacks or hear the ideas of others if she chooses to learn them. It’s an invasive energy, and one you nearly really feel dangerous utilizing on the individuals you develop friendships with. Nonetheless, Alex is at all times trying to assist individuals with their issues, and serving to others transfer previous their traumas is how she is making an attempt to deal with her personal.
Alex’s powers don’t actually swimsuit themselves for puzzle fixing and this transformation does alter the components established previously three titles. Issues are recognized by studying the feelings of characters, then looking for objects imbued with emotion across the setting. It’s extra about going by means of the motions than really testing your puzzle-solving expertise like a few of the time travel-related mind teasers that had been within the first sport. Nonetheless, being a extra easy journey sport isn’t a nasty factor and it lends itself to the title’s best power: its writing.
The story strikes by fairly shortly and, regardless of not being launched episodically, the sport continues to be cut up into 5 chapters with logical stopping factors. However none of those factors in True Colours attain the heights of any of the surprising cliffhangers of Season 1’s later episodes and these developments don’t get a lot time to breathe. Theorizing with the neighborhood was quite a lot of the enjoyable in prior Life Is Unusual titles, which the sport loses out by releasing multi functional go. It’s bingeability that comes at the price of the enjoyment of hypothesis.
Whereas it doesn’t function any revelations which might be as surprising as a few of the collection’ previous revelations, True Colours‘ story is tightly written and thematically cohesive. It wraps up properly and by the finale and offers the title of the sport some additional significance. As a consequence of her selfless nature, Alex is a really likable protagonist, which Life Is Unusual 2 principally lacked, and the townsfolk are highlighted by the sport’s two romance choices: Gabe’s finest pal Ryan Lucan and Steph Gingrich, the LARPing musician who returns from Earlier than the Storm. Each characters are nice as pals and whereas the romance appears a bit rushed because you don’t have a childhood pal backstory à la Max and Chloe, they nonetheless really feel quite pure as these going by means of grief are inclined to search for help from others.
True Colours is a sport that offers again to extra curious gamers. It’s straightforward to mainline the core expertise in only a few hours, however for those who don’t really search across the city of Haven and do your civic responsibility as neighbor then you definately’re going to overlook out on quite a lot of its coronary heart and a few of its finest storylines. From a enjoyable facet story involving a struggling ice cream retailer to a miserable have a look at the load that dementia can placed on members of the family, quite a lot of one of the best writing is hidden away and solely skilled for those who exit of your method to be an precise resident of Haven.
With an impactful story, fleshed-out characters, and a few of the finest writing the collection has seen thus far, Life Is Unusual: True Colours is a triumphant success. The principle story’s twist leaves one thing to be desired, because it’s a bit predictable and by-the-numbers, however it’s bolstered by the opposite elements of the rigorously woven narrative bundle. All of those strengths present that the franchise is clearly in good fingers with Deck 9, because the studio is pushing the collection into an incredible new course.
As ComingSoon’s evaluate coverage explains, a rating of 8 equates to “Nice.” Whereas there are a couple of minor points, this rating implies that the sport succeeds at its objective and leaves a memorable influence.