Tell Me Why, the preview of the latest narrative adventure signed by Dontnod

Tell Me Why, the preview of the latest narrative adventure signed by Dontnod


Ghosts of the past We insist on the episodes The risk of politically correct Certainties and Doubts While Twin Mirror took a long pause for reflection and then returned after two years finished graphically and as a complete experience , no longer divided into episodes, Tell Me Why worked quietly for a few months before returning to the virtual stage of the Xbox Games Showcase to show itself close to launch: the first chapter of the game is in fact scheduled for August 27. The trailer was once again a collage of animated sequences, without a gamplay that allowed us to see the game in action, but considering that it is a narrative adventure and, although changing its name, closely follows the stylistic imprint of Life is Strange (characters with supernatural powers), we have a pretty clear idea of ​​what to expect. The video, however, served to shed more light on a game that once again, after Life is Strange 2, inserts a delicate issue: one of the protagonists, Tyler Ronan, is transgender.

After the social criticism on the wall between the United States and Mexico moved with its latest video game, Dontnod walks along an even more thorny path both as regards the acceptance of transgender people and in terms of staging. It is very easy to fall into error or stereotype, in the politically correct end in itself (which also happened with LiS 2), but the studio has worked closely with Microsoft and the non-profit organization of LGBT activism, GLAAD , to build Tyler demonstrating, on paper, all the will to better manage the matter.

Ghosts of the past

For what we know of the plot, Tell Me Why follows the story of the twins, Alyson and Tyler, who after a long time return to their hometown in Alaska to come to grips with their past . In particular, Tyler, whose childhood was quite troubled, because of his transition: while being born female is, in fact, already as a child he manifested the willingness to identify as a man, with the full support of her sister, cutting her hair and using the name which it still carries. Her mother, however, he felt discouraged from embracing her gender identity and desired of him that he was a girl/young woman as the other. In the trailer, he's shown Tyler enter in the shed next to the house and there find his mother that the toe against a shotgun: it is not clear if the action is voluntary or is instead a choice of the developers to deceive us, but it seems that that night was fateful for the twins.

After being separated for ten years, Alyson and Tyler meet again and decide in agreement to go back to their house for close to a past still too vivid, trying to shed light on the mysterious death of her mother. In the video we hear the authorities believe that, whatever happened, it was self-defense, however, do not have full certainty. The phrase, associated to the images and to the fact that the brothers have not seen for a decade, suggests that the night in which Tyler to faced his mother is also the one where she is dead but to be sure, we will naturally wait for the day of the launch. Putting together the pieces of their past, will require you to Alyson and Tyler to take advantage of the particular power that unites them as twins, the Link , which seems to be activated in the moment in which they feel a very strong emotion allowing them to see remnants of the past with which to interact: by this mechanic depends on the storytelling and the future of the two boys, as well as the evolution or deterioration of their relationship.

You insist on incidents

once again it Is inevitable the comparison with Twin Mirror, which, as already said, has exploited the long distance from the scenes to ensure that its distribution would be unique and no more episodes . Tell Me Why, on the contrary, persists on this road, but with a publication, closer: the first chapter, as written, will be released on the 27th of August, the second on 3 September and the last on September 10. To pass by a subdivision like that unhappy Life is Strange 2 a so much so close is without a doubt a leap in quality but we can not do less than ask the utility to block the players for a week from a chapter with the other. The time of video games in the episodes is finished, LiS2 has shown how Dontnod had to leave as soon as this policy, the developers seemed to have well received the message with Twin Mirror and then are shoved in the error-Tell Me Why.

it is Not clear if the choice depend on the presence of a delicate issue, and therefore from the need to raise the response of the public to, in the case, filing some aspect but we can not understand the decision to publish the episodes in this close round. We have seen how in the long run, this division has not done well to video games (Telltale docet, although there the problem was also for a repetition of the structure) and is curious to see such a difference of approach between the two games belonging to the same category, and developed by the same studio.

The risk of politically correct

Useless hide behind a finger, Dontnod shows, without a doubt the good will, mixed with a dose of cleverness, in wanting to approach certain topics, but just as happened with Life is Strange 2 the politically correct has taken over the narrative, leading to a story that makes water from all sides and the characters are poorly characterized. The choice of making a social criticism through the game for a situation such as that of the wall between Mexico and the United States was laudable in its intentions, however, the experience on the whole proved to be a collection of clich├ęs and a tendency to take on the defenses of the private party - Sean and Daniel as mexicans - regardless of the amount of actions that are questionable made, especially from his little brother. The fear that Tell Me Why it can slide along the same china is strong, especially in the face of a statement that has left us rather perplexed: between the answers to the FAQ of the official website we can read that the developers have wanted to distance ourselves from the stereotype that being transgender is something related to a past trauma. And here we agree, the choice should not necessarily be caused by abuse, loss or any other negative event and traumatic may have occurred in the life of a person.

To follow, however, we read that, by extension, Tell Me Why did not include any episode of transphobia against Tyler: except for a few offensive comments by characters in the first chapter, the second forward all of the interactions will be respectful. It is too early to judge what it means in practical terms but the idea that it leaves is that of eliminating a problem, transphobia, and pretending that doesn't exist: it is not particularly credible staging of a story in which none of the monsters hostility toward Tyler and not because we feel the need to see it abused at all costs, simply because it is precisely from the conflict, the rejection and rejection can be born in interesting ways to condemn behaviors that, unfortunately, today still persist. Adopt the facade of the game is respectful to where Tyler is not harassed even once will only cloak Tell Me Why a patina of feel-good, reducing everything to mere propaganda. We hope that the fears, the game at hand, you will prove to be unfounded.

Like any project of Dontnod, the premise of the narrative to Tell Me Why they are interesting: the game seems to have implications thriller along the lines of the first Life is Strange, and although not seen anything of the gameplay, we can get an idea of what to expect. The division of the episodes leaves us perplexed, especially in view of the publication of the lock-out in a matter of two weeks, but we fear more the spectre of political correctness that already has hit Life is Strange " 2. Some declarations of intent, leave us perplexed and not very confident about the direction we could take Tell Me Why, but we hope that our concerns will be allayed and, by playing it, the narration does not give place to a pretentious propaganda.


Premises narrative interesting Graphically, you can notice progress


The division of the episodes, leaves us puzzled by The spectrum of the politically correct is always around the corner

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