On 'Life is Strange'

A story first, skip ahead for the actual review.

Not long after the game's initial release I picked up the first episode and was immediately hooked. Played through it in a weekend, and then for a second time with different choices.

I immersed myself completely into the world and story, and it was intense. Couldn't even think about playing another episode for a whole week. It actually took well over a month before I could play the second episode.

And the second episode was even better. Now I had to take an even longer break.

When I finally resumed playing, both ep3 and ep4 were out, and ep5 just two weeks away. I tried to pace myself by just playing ep3 during one weekend, and then ep4 the next.

I failed. Ended up playing ep3 in a single day. And because it ended with such a cliffhanger I just had to play ep4 the next day.

That was a dire mistake. Now I'm broken and feel empty and hollow. Couldn't even function properly for the rest of the day(or the next).

* * *

This game is larger than life. The game's protagonist is a photographer, and through her eyes it is seen how vibrant and colorful the world actually is. The atmosphere is truly captivating and full of wonder, and the plot something unexpected.

It took a long time to quantify, but I finally figured out why the game resonated so strongly with me. My life is quite dull and boring, and immersing myself completely to the game world and its characters allowed me to break free from that grayness, and experience the full spectrum of the shades that is life.

There is also the role playing aspect. I'm normally not that social. I stick to the routine and am quite cautious on trying out new things. But the game's protagonist is social. Routine is broken by the unfolding events and that leads to trying out new things. Even the character interactions allow for experimentation thanks to the rewind ability.

This all is so much more than the gray ordinariness of (my) real life. The withdrawals from stopping playing are real and hit me hard. Combine this with an awesome plot that you can influence in a real way. Add a setting that allows to partly (re?)live what I kinda missed growing up. And finally add the very likeable protagonist, a great selection of songs and the very fitting and beautiful graphics(and not a single problem with performance).

6/5. Will play again - when I recover.

(Also, there was a great opinion piece on PCGamer by Jody Macgregor, I highly recommend reading it.)

Plotting GPS data

Sometimes going out for just a walk isn’t that easy and some extra motivation is needed. Luckily I had just that extra: going for a walk allowed me to get some rather important real-world data for the GPS tracking service I have been working for quite some time.

During those walks I had the idea to further use the recorded data. The forest was filled with paths and I thought it’d be great to map those. And maybe even have some kind of heatmap of the most traveled routes!
Work, studies, gaming and general procrastination kept me busy, but here it finally is: