The protagonist Chloe Price experiences several anxiety dreams[note 1] featuring her deceased father William Price who is sometimes accompanied by the ominous and watchful raven, in Life is Strange: Before the Storm.
Episode One - "Awake"
The first dream begins when Chloe falls asleep in David's car on the way to Blackwell Academy after her long night at the Firewalk concert. She "wakes up" sitting on the back seat of William's car hearing country music in her dream and remarks "Dad loved this song...". Chloe starts singing with the song and comments, "what a beautiful day". She remarks that her mother, Joyce Price would "tell him to turn that junk off" when she looks at William and asks him to turn the music up.
Chloe then interacts with a bag of picture frames with a photo of her family in which William is replaced by David and the socket wrench which David wanted her to get out of his garage previously, remarking that she knows what a spark plug does.
Shortly after the interactions, William starts singing to the song. A truck horn is audible making Chloe distressed. As it gets louder she screams "dad", trying to warn him while a crossing truck is driving towards their car's side. The dream ends as the truck hits the car and David reminds her to leave the car as they arrive.
This dream resembles the theme of hope, based on a letter Chloe imagined Max send her apologizing for not keeping in touch because her letters got lost and that she is coming back to Arcadia Bay.
The second dream begins after finding the car wreck from William's accident in the junkyard and Chloe falling asleep in it after smashing objects in a fit of rage about her tragic life. Waking up in William's car again, the country music is audible and William asks her, "Why are you crying, sweetheart?". The raven appears on the dashboard for a second. She responds with "because you are not real." William becomes David for a second, then turns back into himself and says: "I'm not?".
Chloe interacts with the wine bottle or the mannequin head on which William will also comment. William asks her to look on the bright side, leading her to inquire about the bright side. He explains that she made a new friend today. The car drives further, showing Rachel standing in front of a tree through the window. Chloe comments "what do you care?" and William apologizes for getting into Chloe's personal business.
He remarks that "that was quite a fight" and that Rachel nearly "took Chloe's head off". William then comments that sometimes people need Chloe, pointing out of the window to Rachel and continuing, even if they don't admit it.
William stops the car and Rachel puts her hand against the window. Reluctantly Chloe follows and slowly moves towards the glass with her face leading Rachel to catch on fire. Shortly afterwards the truck hits the car again, ending Chloe's dream.
This dream heavily contrasts the first dream's theme of hope with the dialog and perspective, especially with the journal drawing.
Episode Two - "Brave New World"
The third dream occurs near the beginning of Episode 2 when Chloe falls asleep in the truck. Chloe awakens in a dark, nightmarish landscape lit only by the wildfire in the distance and by a smaller fire nearby. The sounds of distant screams can be heard throughout the entire dream sequence.
When Chloe approaches the nearby fire she will discover it to be the burning wreckage of her father's car. Roasting a marshmallow over the fire is none other than William himself. Perched on a small tree next to him is the raven which seems to be watching Chloe. She can either talk to William or gather a stick and a marshmallow and roast it over the fire at which point William will begin speaking. He will comment on how the wildfire looks amazing and how he can't seem to look away (William never turns his head to Chloe).
Chloe will reply with a sad "Sure." William tells her not to pretend that she's also mesmerized by it. He says that she doesn't realize the danger it represents. Chloe seems confused and William explains: "Fire blinds us, just like darkness. But darkness blinds with absence. With loss." Chloe asks what fire blinds with.
William replies "Beauty," and extinguishes the distant wildfire with a wave of his hand. He then tells Chloe about a "greater beauty" yet to come and the sky changes to show stars glowing brightly.
William speaks again, warning "Fire is jealous, Chloe. It wants all the beauty for itself." His voice suddenly changes, sounding deeper and demonic, "That's why you need to be careful." Chloe asks what she needs to be careful of. William slowly turns to face Chloe who recoils in fear at the sight of her father's face, half of which is burned and scarred. "Of getting burned," William answers in the demonic voice. The raven leaps onto his shoulder and starts pecking at his mangled flesh as William stares at Chloe. The dream abruptly ends.
This dream can be interpreted as a possible warning about Rachel, that Chloe will eventually end up hurt because of her.
Episode Three - "Hell Is Empty"
The fourth dream occurs when Chloe and Rachel lie on the bed in Rachel's room. (TBC)
In this dream sequence, it's shown how much Chloe is affected traumatically by her father's death. Chloe is afraid that she will eventually forget about him in the future. This is signified by showing William's voice and body change, making him appear like her stepfather David, for a split second. This conveys how her memories of William are obscuring with her interactions with David. In this case, working on cars together, which was an occurrence she has had with David and not William. Equally, the dream touches on how Chloe feels inside. When it comes to Chloe's interactions with the people around her, she compares herself to an actor in a play. Chloe has this rough bravado that she portrays to others. She then uses this to mask her inner demons. When talking to her father she explains how, "None of this is real" -- "All of this is just theater" and how she doesn't want to be like an actor, she just wants to be herself. William then explains to her that everyone is similar to an actor in their own lives. People tend to hide their real feelings and or problems, whether if its to fit in or to provide the illusion to others that everything is ok. At the end of her dream, it depicts morbidly how the world seems to taunt her. Helplessly Chloe watches her father get hit by the semi-truck, causing her to collapse into tears, as the audience members boo her.
A surreal dream occurs when Chloe stops near the burned forest after almost crashes into a truck. (TBC)
This dream can be interpreted as Chloe choosing what to make of her relationship with William and maybe somewhat coming to terms with her current situation.
- Main article: Chloe's Dream Journal
Chloe's journal and text messages changes completely during both dream sequences and give further insight into her situation, fears, hopes and feelings.
- In the second dream, Chloe can remove a The Tempest poster from the front seat, then grab her marker from the wine bottle and write graffiti with it.
- See here for all interactions in the game. Hover over the text to see Chloe's comments.
- Chloe can look at William."If Mom were here, she'd tell him to turn that junk off."
- Chloe can speak with William."Dad, turn it up!"
- Chloe can look at the purse with picture frames. (determinant)"This... this isn't right..."
- Chloe can look at the purse with condoms. (determinant)"I guess Mom left her purse back here?"
- Chloe can look at the purse with money. (determinant)
- Chloe can look at the socket wrench."I know what a spark plug does, jerkwad."
- Chloe can look at the The Tempest poster.
Look again: "Wait, what's my line?"Look: "What's past is prologue and shit."
- She can move the poster and write a graffiti where it was.
Graffiti after noticing marker: "Stupid wine bottle's got my marker."
Graffiti: "Dad used to hate it when I wrote on shit."Graffiti without marker: "Hey... Where's my marker?"
- She can look at the graffiti."Sleep is for the weak."
- She can look at the broken wine bottle.
Look again before trying to write: "That's just wine on the floor... right?"
After trying to write:"Oh. There it is."
Look again: "You stole my marker, jerk."Look: "I don't feel drunk."
- She can look at the mannequin's head.
Look again: "I didn't mean to hurt you..."Look: "I guess I did that..."
- Chloe can look at William."I miss him, so much."
- She can try speaking to William without roasting a marshmallow.
Second time: "Are you trying to tell me something?"
Third time: "Dad?"First time: "Dad, what are we doing here?"
- She can look at the burning car."I wonder if it burned like this the day... the day it happened."
- She can look at and take a stick (required)."Do I feel like roasting a marshmallow?"
- She can look at and stab a marshmallow on the stick (required)."Do I even like marshmallows?"
- She can roast the marshmallow in the fire (required).
Chloe's voice and tone seems more vulnerable and younger during the dream sequences.
The dreams foreshadow Chloe appearing in The Tempest as Ariel by Chloe appearing on play advertisement as her and somewhat David moving into the Price household with the Price family photo, where he replaces William. (TBC)
- The song that plays in William's car is "Burning The Midnight Oil" by Thomm Jutz and Peter Cronin.
- Throughout the game, items and people that can be interacted with have a vivid white outline, however in the third dream this outline is purple.
- The phrase "Fire blinds with beauty" in the game is a possible reference to a Ray Bradbury book: Fahrenheit 451. Here is a quote from the book in relation to the sun that could be seen as their inspiration for this scene.
"They don’t know this is all one huge big blazing meteor that makes fire in space, but that some day it’ll have to hit. They see only the blaze, the pretty fire as you saw it".This is a poetic way of saying that fire burns with beauty and how we as humans are oblivious to its dangers. Another reference to a Ray Bradbury book, The October Country, is present in the original Life is Strange.
- ↑ Anxiety dreams often stem from childhood trauma and can be related to the loss of a family member and can be evoked by emotional conflicts that one is facing in life. Freud explained that these dreams fall into two categories: “those in which there is sorrow attached to the death and those in which there is no grief.” Those two categories might be reflective of the different themes being present in Chloe's dreams. For more information on anxiety dreams, see here.