We now have beginner info on the upcoming new installment in the Life is Strange video game franchise.
Life Is Strange (So Far)
The episodic graphic adventure game series was originally created by indie developer Dontnod Entertainment and distributed by video game publisher Square Enix. Previously, the series, involving teenagers and young adults in supernatural circumstances, had three installments: the flagship game from 2015, a prequel exploring some side-character’s origins, and a 2019 sequel involving new characters and circumstances within the same world. For LGBTQ gamers, the series has been praised for its significant LGBTQ-inclusion. This includes the continual option for players to engage in a same-sex romance.
Then last week, Square Enix announced an event called “Square Enix Presents.” The 40-minute evnet, which aired today at 10am PDT, was meant to update the press and gaming fans on their upcoming projects. This included a new installment in the Life is Strange franchise.
“Be there for the World Premiere of the next game in the critically acclaimed series, where you’ll meet a new protagonist with a fascinating new power,” Square Enix wrote.
Life Is Strange (The Future)
So, what did we learn from the event? First, it turns out this game WAS NOT created by Dontnod Entertainment. Instead, it seems that Square Enix is spreading the development of flagship Life is Strange games to Dontnod while Deck Nine games is creating this new installment. The game is titled Life is Strange: True Colors and follows a new main character named Alex Chen.
At the start of the game, Alex has already had a hard life through the foster care system. Then as a young adult, she reunites with her brother, after eight years, in the happy town of Haven Springs. But after her brother’s mysterious death, Alex uses her powers to discover what really happened. As for those powers, it seems that Alex has the psychic ability of empathy. She can feel people’s emotions and, if she pushes further, understand why they are feeling whatever they’re feeling. In addition, Alex can be swayed by their emotions if they are strong enough.
“Life is Strange: True Colors is a game we at Deck Nine have been working on since 2017,” said game director Zack Garriss in the game’s announcement video. “It has been a real labor of love for us. We are so delighted to share with you today. At its heart, this is a game about empathy. About how we connect to each other. The story is driven by a complex mystery with supernatural elements all brought to life by an incredible cast led by our new player character Alex, played by Erika Mori.”
As Mori then adds, “What I love most about Alex is she’s this smart, resilient, young woman who, at the start of the game, has already weathered a really difficult life in the foster care system. But she still has this hope for the future. That somewhere, she can find a place to call home.”
As for you LGBTQ gamers, yes! There is a same-sex romance option for Alex. Gamers will meet two new friends, Ryan and Steph (the latter being from Life is Strange: Before the Storm). Both characters can be romanced, have queer-inclusive romance options (as with Life is Strange 1 and 2).
Some other info we learned is that the game was created with full-performance capture technology and will be released IN FULL on September 10. While the game will be episodic, it wont be released in bi-monthly installments like before. We look forward to playing!