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Life Is Strange: True Colors Chapter 1 Guide - Cover For Ethan, Lie For Mac

Life is Strange: True Colors has a ton of choices to make, some of which will have long-lasting consequences.

Like previous games in the series, Life is Strange: True Colors will regularly present you with choices that will influence the outcome of the story. Most of these choices are mandatory but a few are optional and easily missable. Below, we go over all the choices that are important to True Colors Chapter 1: Side A. You'll make additional decisions beyond these ones, but they don't have as significant an impact.

As an additional note, though we don't go into detail about all of them here (we'll cover the major ones), there are certain choices that can influence how Alex perceives herself. Notably, whether she loves music and herself. If you constantly make decisions that have Alex look down upon her incredible musical talent, she won't as easily regard making music as a career choice. Additionally, folks around Alex--upon learning of her Empathy--will regard her as a superhero, but it's up to you to decide whether she ultimately views her abilities as a gift or a curse.

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Chapter 1: Side A Walkthrough

Meeting Gabe [Mandatory]

Right at the start of True Colors, Alex will meet her brother again for the first time in years. You'll be prompted with the choice of whether to shake Gabe's hand or give him a hug.

Personally, we advise you to go for a hug. Neither choice has massive ramifications for the story (at least as far as we can tell) but hugging Gabe as opposed to shaking his hand will influence the two siblings' relationship to start on as positive a note as possible.

Meeting Riley [Mandatory]

When you first meet Riley, you'll learn that Gabe is helping her with an application essay. Riley thinks it's smarter to use flowery language to describe her weaknesses, like she "works too hard," while Gabe thinks it's better that she just be honest. Riley will then ask you to be the tiebreaker.

If you want to ensure your relationship with Gabe is as close as it can be, side with him. However, it's better to side with Riley in this debate as doing so will ensure you set the most positive first impression you can with her (similar to hugging Gabe at the start as opposed to shaking his hand). Being Riley's friend and someone she can trust will be important for later chapters.

Talking To Gabe About Ethan's Plans [Mandatory]

When you first meet Ethan, he'll tell you about his plans to sneak into Haven's old abandoned mine after dark. He'll ask you to keep his secret--later, his trust in you will be put to the test when you have the option of telling Gabe about Ethan's plans or keeping quiet.

It may seem like the right and responsible thing to do to tell your brother that his adopted son is planning to go visit a mine after dark. But that's how cops think, and Alex ain't no snitch.

And beyond that: Your choice in this instance doesn't really matter--the overall story won't change depending on whether you blab or keep your mouth shut. But you do get brownie points with Ethan for keeping his secret and that's more important.

Rocking Out With Gabe [Mandatory]

When Gabe shows Alex his apartment, he'll eventually start playing air drums and invite Alex to pick up a broom to rock out with him on "guitar." You can join him or be a coward and just watch.

Don't be a coward.

Meeting Charlotte [Mandatory]

When you finally meet Gabe's girlfriend, Charlotte, she'll strike up an (awkward) conversation with Alex, in an attempt to get to know you. She'll take notice of Alex's star tattoo and eventually ask how Alex feels about Haven so far. You have the choice of being positive, negative, or ambivalent.

In order to set a positive first impression with Charlotte, it's important to be positive or ambivalent about how Alex feels about Haven.

Alex's History As A Server [Mandatory]

When Gabe needs to step out for medical attention, Jed will ask if you can step in to be a server for the bar, saying that Gabe told him that you have plenty of experience as a server. This, of course, is a lie. So you have the choice of supporting Gabe's lie or telling Jed the truth and admitting you have no experience.

In this instance, telling the truth and then impressing Jed with your performance is the best course of action. As a server, you'll need to clear the backroom, take and remember two orders, and check in with people. The only tricky part of this is remembering Diane and Duckie's orders. They will tell you what they want and then you need to tell Jed via a multiple-choice test. As soon as you get their order, just go straight to Jed before you forget. You'll have time to do everything else afterwards.

Duckie's Missing Whiskey [Missable]

Part of Duckie's order is his usual: a particular brand of whiskey. He and Gabe had the bottle last, so you'll need to find it. It's upstairs in the apartment, squeezed between the couch cushions. Finding Duckie's whiskey sets a good first impression with him, helping you get the game's "good" ending.

Steph's Jukebox Game [Missable]

Steph is in the bar during your shift and will ask if you want to play the Jukebox Game with her. You get to ask five yes or no questions in an attempt to figure out one of the songs in the Jukebox.

Frankly, it doesn't matter whether you win or lose. The important thing is to play so that you start a friendship with Steph and establish a repertoire that can lead to romance down the line, if you so wish.

Talking To Riley About Mac [Mandatory]

When Riley learns about Mac getting beat up, she'll show up to ask what happened to him. Mac will then lie, telling Riley that Gabe is at fault. You can also lie and cover for Mac (ensuring Gabe takes the blame for the altercation) or tell Riley the truth.

Though you do earn Mac's trust by covering for him, the dude doesn't deserve it. And even without his trust, you'll be able to get the information you need from him later (it will just require a little push on your part). Tell Riley the truth--it will end her relationship with Mac for good, but it will further cement your friendship with her. More importantly, you'll firmly earn her trust and you will need that for later.

Talking To Gabe About Alex's Past [Mandatory]

On the rooftop, late into the first episode, when confronted with the choice of talking to Gabe about Alex's past, you'll have two options. You can talk to Gabe about Alex's life in foster care or outright reveal to him that she possesses superhuman Empathy powers.

There is no wrong answer here--either choice will improve the relationship between Alex and Gabe as her opening up to him will prove to him that she trusts him. However, there is a branch in the story here. If you tell Gabe about your powers, he will be the first to know about them. Continuing to hide them means that someone else (one of True Colors' two romance options--Ryan) will be the first to know, ensuring that their relationship with you will be a lot closer (as they will then become the first and only person to know).

This may make it seem like hiding your powers from Gabe is the way to go, especially if you want to romance Ryan, however, telling Gabe about your powers is extraordinarily helpful in getting Alex onto the track of regarding her abilities as more of a superpower than a curse. You'll be able to get her on this track regardless of what you decide here, but if you want that process to start sooner rather than later, confide in Gabe.

How Alex Feels About Gabe's Gift [Mandatory]

When Alex admits that she found Gabe's gift--a guitar--he'll ask her what she thinks about it. You can have Alex tell him that she felt rusty or that she loves the guitar. Go with the latter choice, especially if you want Alex to fall in love with making music over the course of the story.

Red Or Black Wire [Missable]

When looking for a way to follow Ethan, Ryan will try to restore the power so that he and Alex can more easily see. He'll ask you whether he should mess with the red or black wire. You can answer or you can choose to ignore him.

You want to tell him "red wire" as that's the correct answer, further solidifying Alex as a trustworthy person in Ryan's eyes. You'll need his trust if you want True Colors' "good" ending.


Jordan Ramée

Jordan Ramée is an editor at GameSpot. He's been covering video games and anime since 2016, cultivating a skill set that allows him to transform his unhealthy obsessions into what he would argue is compelling content (we won't tell him if you don't). Do not let him know that you're playing Hollow Knight--he will take that as a sign that you wish to talk about the lore for the next five hours.

Life is Strange: True Colors

Life is Strange: True Colors

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