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View Full Version : This game is not about fate, it's about friendship!



RanXYZ
25th Oct 2015, 21:20
Many people argue about the meaning of the ending, as if there was only one "cannon" ending, the other one being just filler.

I think that's not true. I just realized that this game is not about time travel. It's not about destiny or fatality either ("you can't avoid what is written" etc.): since the ancient Greek tragedians, this horse has already been beaten to death several times.

The whole point of the story, the true question it asks is : how far are you ready to go in the name of friendship/love?

Through the episodes, Max has proven that, for Chloe's sake, she was ready to:
- overcome her shyness to confront authority figures (the principal / David Madsen),
- put herself at risk (Nathan Prescott),
- break the law (breaking into the school),
- sacrifice an other person's life (William),
- eventually, sacrifice her own life (she destroys her contest picture, a fact that sends her back from San Francisco into the dark room, only for the off chance to return to Arcadia Bay and save Chloe).

The choice at the end boils down to: are you ready to sacrifice everything else for your best friend/loved one?

Which puts in perspective Dontnod's twits between episodes 4 and 5, about what best friends are supposed to do for each other...

iReturnVideotapes
25th Oct 2015, 21:33
I think most people understand that, but saving Chloe did not provide them with a satisfactory ending. And admittedly, I can see why they would be angry. This is why it's not considered canon. It feels more like an after thought to an ending that clearly had more time put into it. After 5 episodes of living through life with these characters and learning to love them, they should have been given more. If they really really willing to sacrifice an entire town to save Chloe, we needed to see the consequence of that. We needed to see people dying. Families hurdling up together praying they'll be spared. We needed to see that Max understood it was the wrong decision and one that might cause some serious mental health problems down the road, but that she was willing to deal with whatever consequence to save her best friend.

RanXYZ
25th Oct 2015, 21:34
What I wrote above is true since we play from Max's point of view; but what Chloe learns is just as important even if we don't experience it first hand (some say that Chloe is the true main character of the story, which is arguable). Basically, she learns that it is not "always about her". Her discovering altruism in the very last chapter is, in my opinion, the real turning point of the story.

Or, to put it another way:
- Max transitions into adulthood by daring to take action (in Chrysalis, she is even too shy to submit a photo!). Then she has to decide at what point she should stop to take action, even for her best friend/love Chloe's sake.
- Chloe transitions into adulthood by ceasing to be exclusively self-centered, then she has to decide if she should sacrifice everything she has for the sake of others.

This game is about friendship, altruism and life choices. Fate, destiny and time travel are only pretexts here :)

edit because cross-posted: @iReturnVideotapes, I rather agree with you about the fact that the "Chloe lives" ending left me quite a bit frustrated because it lets many things unresolved, but as Michel Koch stated, they did the best they could with the time and budget they could afford...

Tataboj
25th Oct 2015, 21:46
The main message for me was "sometimes you have to forget the past and move on." BTW, I don't think "shy" means "immature". :)

KristaD
25th Oct 2015, 22:23
The choice at the end boils down to: are you ready to sacrifice everything else for your best friend/loved one?



I think it's cool that you see that in the game, or see those choices in such a way. This is by no means an easy question to answer, I have personally thought really hard on this one regarding the people I've loved and lost. Finding an answer for that question isn't easy given the myriad of factors you would have to consider and then here is the unforeseen consequences of changing things, just see what happens when Maxine starts meddling with things too much...

MeteoricDragon
26th Oct 2015, 04:03
Many people argue about the meaning of the ending, as if there was only one "cannon" ending, the other one being just filler.

I think that's not true. I just realized that this game is not about time travel. It's not about destiny or fatality either ("you can't avoid what is written" etc.): since the ancient Greek tragedians, this horse has already been beaten to death several times.

The whole point of the story, the true question it asks is : how far are you ready to go in the name of friendship/love?

Through the episodes, Max has proven that, for Chloe's sake, she was ready to:
- overcome her shyness to confront authority figures (the principal / David Madsen),
- put herself at risk (Nathan Prescott),
- break the law (breaking into the school),
- sacrifice an other person's life (William),
- eventually, sacrifice her own life (she destroys her contest picture, a fact that sends her back from San Francisco into the dark room, only for the off chance to return to Arcadia Bay and save Chloe).

The choice at the end boils down to: are you ready to sacrifice everything else for your best friend/loved one?

Which puts in perspective Dontnod's twits between episodes 4 and 5, about what best friends are supposed to do for each other...

I can understand and agree with that theme.

MMOBLITZ
30th Oct 2015, 11:34
I think most people understand that, but saving Chloe did not provide them with a satisfactory ending. And admittedly, I can see why they would be angry. This is why it's not considered canon. It feels more like an after thought to an ending that clearly had more time put into it. After 5 episodes of living through life with these characters and learning to love them, they should have been given more. If they really really willing to sacrifice an entire town to save Chloe, we needed to see the consequence of that. We needed to see people dying. Families hurdling up together praying they'll be spared. We needed to see that Max understood it was the wrong decision and one that might cause some serious mental health problems down the road, but that she was willing to deal with whatever consequence to save her best friend.

Who says it's the wrong decision? It maybe wrong to you, but to other other half of the player base it's the right decision. I won't get into why I think that. The person in this piece says it better than I could. http://www.twinfinite.net/2015/10/22/my-life-is-strange-ending-was-selfish-and-thats-hella-fine/

PalatineKatinka
31st Oct 2015, 21:29
If they really really willing to sacrifice an entire town to save Chloe, we needed to see the consequence of that. We needed to see people dying.

No, we don't. You might want me to see that so you can feel better about yourself up on your moral high horse. I don't need to see that. I needed to see Max & Chloe happy together and that's what I got. What actually happens to the town is completely irrelevant. All that matters is that I was willing to make that choice regardless of the consequences. I accepted the consequences of my actions and moved forward. If the consequences weren't as bad as I thought, cool. If they were as bad as I thought, c'est la vie.

Having read that the ending was left ambiguous because all that matters to it is Max & Chloe (according to tweets by Michel Koch) I'm actually starting to see this as the more likely candidate for being canon as it is the most flexible and open ended. The sacrifice of Chloe is longer but that doesn't really mean anything. I mean, what did they fill that time with? Max crying, Max attending Chloe's funeral, Joyce crying... Yeah they filled it with more depression. Sacrificing Arcadia Bay was deliberately left ambiguous. They deliberately didn't force down our throats the guilt of killing every other character in the game. Ultimately, canon only matters if they plan on continuing and this ambiguous ending is the one that lets them bring back anyone since there are no confirmed deaths and doesn't kill off the character whose voice actress just won them an award.

Tataboj
31st Oct 2015, 22:17
Developers said that potential season 2 will be with new characters. Just a reminder. :)

Lehkeri
31st Oct 2015, 22:23
Developers said that potential season 2 will be with new characters. Just a reminder. :)

Yeah, they said that a while ago. I don't know if it still holds true, as many see Life is Strange = Max (and most likely Chloe). It would be a risk to ditch them. Is it worth taking? Who knows.

PalatineKatinka
31st Oct 2015, 22:40
Developers said that potential season 2 will be with new characters. Just a reminder. :)

And in that case it wont matter in the slightest which ending we chose and whether or not it is canon so the whole matter of what is considered canon is moot. As I said...


Ultimately, canon only matters if they plan on continuing...

All that matters is the message which is the same regardless of the ending chosen. Sometimes you got to accept that bad stuff will happen no matter how hard you try to stop it but don't beat yourself up over it, just move on and make the most of what went well.

iReturnVideotapes
1st Nov 2015, 06:21
Who says it's the wrong decision? It maybe wrong to you, but to other other half of the player base it's the right decision. I won't get into why I think that. The person in this piece says it better than I could. http://www.twinfinite.net/2015/10/22/my-life-is-strange-ending-was-selfish-and-thats-hella-fine/

Yeah sorry, but showing me an article written by another sociopath that believes the same thing you do does not mean your decision isn't completely unrelentingly wrong. It just means you found someone equally as insane.


No, we don't. You might want me to see that so you can feel better about yourself up on your moral high horse. I don't need to see that. I needed to see Max & Chloe happy together and that's what I got. What actually happens to the town is completely irrelevant. All that matters is that I was willing to make that choice regardless of the consequences. I accepted the consequences of my actions and moved forward. If the consequences weren't as bad as I thought, cool. If they were as bad as I thought, c'est la vie.

Yes. My moral high ground is so infinitely superior to yours because I think the lives of an entire town are more important than the one life of your best friend. This is clearly about moral superiority and not at all about reason. It must be really nice for you to close your eyes and plug your ears and pretend that you're not directly responsible for the hundreds/thousands of lives that ended on account of your nepotism, but you are. Who cares that Chloe's mom, David, Warren, Kate, Victoria, all those kids with promising futures just starting out their lives, are now dead right? At least we got to see Chloe and Max happy together! Just don't let me see them dying and everything is fine because ignorance is bliss!

Tataboj
1st Nov 2015, 07:17
Yeah, they said that a while ago. I don't know if it still holds true, as many see Life is Strange = Max (and most likely Chloe). It would be a risk to ditch them. Is it worth taking? Who knows.

It seems to me that writers made this story as a whole, and if they would continue, they would destroy some of the intended aspects of the story, mainly the room for interpretation. That's what I think developers are thinking. And I am afraid of a sequel with Max, because I have already explained some things to myself and then it won't happen. And of course Warren will fall in friendzone again in the sequel.

PalatineKatinka
1st Nov 2015, 14:11
Yes. My moral high ground is so infinitely superior to yours because I think the lives of an entire town are more important than the one life of your best friend. This is clearly about moral superiority and not at all about reason. It must be really nice for you to close your eyes and plug your ears and pretend that you're not directly responsible for the hundreds/thousands of lives that ended on account of your nepotism, but you are. Who cares that Chloe's mom, David, Warren, Kate, Victoria, all those kids with promising futures just starting out their lives, are now dead right? At least we got to see Chloe and Max happy together! Just don't let me see them dying and everything is fine because ignorance is bliss!

Well, I'm basing my view on comments made by Michel Koch as to why the Sacrifice Arcadia Bay ending was left ambiguous and how all choices in this game are grey with good and bad points with some being better or worse than expected but the message of the game being to stop worrying about the past and move on. I don't know if hundreds/thousands died. I see two bodies in that ending and they aren't even named characters. I know that the storm was recognisable as a full blown tornado at 9:03am from Max's text from Warren. I know she doesn't leave the Dark Room until 12:19pm from Max's phone when she calls Warren about getting the photo to save Chloe. Add in the time it takes her to drive there, get into the diner, talk to people, get the photo, switch to new timeline & the time it takes for Chloe to drag Max's unconscious body from the beach to the lighthouse and I'm thinking a lot of people will have reached safety in those ~4 hours. Except Evan. He's clearly an idiot.

Ultimately there is no right or wrong answer. We have to make the choice we can accept and move on.

iReturnVideotapes
1st Nov 2015, 14:52
Well, I'm basing my view on comments made by Michel Koch as to why the Sacrifice Arcadia Bay ending was left ambiguous and how all choices in this game are grey with good and bad points with some being better or worse than expected but the message of the game being to stop worrying about the past and move on. I don't know if hundreds/thousands died. I see two bodies in that ending and they aren't even named characters. I know that the storm was recognisable as a full blown tornado at 9:03am from Max's text from Warren. I know she doesn't leave the Dark Room until 12:19pm from Max's phone when she calls Warren about getting the photo to save Chloe. Add in the time it takes her to drive there, get into the diner, talk to people, get the photo, switch to new timeline & the time it takes for Chloe to drag Max's unconscious body from the beach to the lighthouse and I'm thinking a lot of people will have reached safety in those ~4 hours. Except Evan. He's clearly an idiot.

Ultimately there is no right or wrong answer. We have to make the choice we can accept and move on.

The mental gymnastics that just went into trying to justify sacrificing an entire town for the sake of your one best friend are amusing. That's a hell of a lot of "what ifs" and "maybes" in the hopes that your choice is a better alternative to giving up Chloe.

Now look, I don't have a personal problem with anyone who sacrifices Arcadia Bay. This is a work of fiction. I understand that well enough. I sympathise with those that say "too bad, I love Chloe too much to let her go". But to say that I'm on a "moral high horse" for saying that it is still the wrong choice, is absolutely absurd. Can I ask you, if this was a choice you personally had to make in real life, which one would you choose? Your best friend, or the fate of an entire town? Serious question. It's easy to make that choice in a video game when no one is going to get hurt in real life, but hypothetically, we're talking about real life here.

PalatineKatinka
1st Nov 2015, 15:10
The mental gymnastics that just went into trying to justify sacrificing an entire town for the sake of your one best friend are amusing. That's a hell of a lot of "what ifs" and "maybes" in the hopes that your choice is a better alternative to giving up Chloe.

What mental gymnastics? It's pretty simple. We have no idea how many would die and they had 4 hours to reach safety. That's it.


But to say that I'm on a "moral high horse" for saying that it is still the wrong choice, is absolutely absurd.

It's not absurd at all as the point of the game is that there is no right or wrong. You are judging people because you can't accept the choice they made when the intention by the writers is that both options are valid as neither is right or wrong.


Can I ask you, if this was a choice you personally had to make in real life, which one would you choose? Your best friend, or the fate of an entire town? Serious question. It's easy to make that choice in a video game when no one is going to get hurt in real life, but hypothetically, we're talking about real life here.

In the hypothetical situation where we have absolutely no evidence that the sacrifice will work and no idea just how many people are currently in harms way? Sure, I'd choose the guaranteed option instead of taking the risk that things might get worse.