At X019, developer Dontnod Entertainment revealed their next project, Tell Me Why. Similar to other Dontnod titles like Life is Strange 2, Tell Me Why will be episodic and story-driven in nature. It’ll also offer somber subject matter and speak to gamers on an emotional level.
Dontnod unveil new episodic game, Tell Me Why
Tell Me Why will follow characters Alyson and Tyler Ronan, twins who use their close bond to process a difficult childhood through memories in order to carve out a path for a better future. One thing that sets Tell Me Why apart (even among Dontnod games) is the inclusion of LGBTQA+ themes, notably around Tyler Ronan and his transition as a transgender man.
The subject of transgender transition isn’t often touched upon in media, particularly video games. Dontnod and Microsoft are touting Tyler as the “first transgender protagonist to come out of a major video game publisher and studio.” With so much riding on Dontnod and Microsoft’s shoulders, it’s been revealed that Microsoft consulted with GLAAD to portray Tyler in an accurate, respectful manner.
As with other Dontnod games, the player will have to make choices in Tell Me Why, with choices having a direct impact on the direction of the game. Touching upon the gameplay, game director Florent Guillaume spoke on Tell Me Why and the close bond between Alyson and Tyler.
“The core mechanic of the game is the special bond Tyler and Alyson share and is also a theme strongly anchored into the Dontnod storytelling approach. Over the course of the story, players will explore the identical twins’ different memories of key events and choose which memory to believe,” Guillame explained.
“Ultimately, the choices players make determine the strength of the twins’ bond – and the future course of their lives. We love them both. And we are especially grateful to Microsoft for its full support, openness, and help regarding Tyler’s identity and character, as a transgender man.”
As of right now, Dontnod plans to release the first three episodes of Tell Me Why during the Summer of 2020. Tell Me Why will be available on both Xbox One and PC (Windows 10, Steam).