Tell me Why Developer Dontnod Didn’t Set Out to Have a Transgender Protagonist in the Game at First

Tell me Why Developer Dontnod Didn’t Set Out to Have a Transgender Protagonist in the Game at First

In a new interview, Tell Me Why developer Dontnod said they "didn't want to shy away" from having a transgender protagonist.

In an interview with Gamesindustry.biz, Dontnod Entertainment’s Florent Guillaume says the developer didn’t set out to have a transgender main character at first for Tell Me Why, their latest game.

“We didn’t start the project setting expectations or having an agenda to push for inclusivity,” says Guillaume, Tell Me Why‘s game director. “We started this great collaboration with Microsoft to tell a story about twins, and as we developed the characters and the story, because we’re talking about twins, two identical people, we wanted to make the characters unique. They are both likable, both great characters by themselves, and we came up with this idea of having Tyler be a transgender man.”

“When we started with this idea, we thought it was great, it was [a story] we wanted to tell, it made sense for the story and the characters,” continues Guillaume. “We didn’t want to shy away from that and the difficulty of doing it.”

Announced at XO19, Tell Me Why is a thriller that follows Tyler and Alyson, two twins that work together to unravel their troubled childhood. This is the latest narrative-driven game to come from Dontnod, which developed the Life is Strange series. In making a game with a transgender character, Dontnod did research to have a better understanding of the transgender community. Additionally, they reached out to GLADD to further their research and build a connection with them.

“To me, it was important to understand the transgender community, their struggle, and what they live and go through,” Guillaume says. “If we can pass on this message to all gamers who play the game, it will be fantastic.”

Tell Me Why launches in summer 2020 on Xbox One and PC, published by Xbox Game Studios. You can check out the game’s reveal trailer if you want to see it in action. If you’re looking for more content from Dontnod, you can get Life is Strange 2 now on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.