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Microsoft and Dontnod reveal narrative adventure with transgender protagonist

Life Is Strange developer's Tell Me Why debuts at X019, arrives on Xbox and PC next year

Xbox Games Studios has partnered with Dontnod Entertainment on a new narrative title, one featuring a transgender man as one of the playable protagonists.

Tell Me Why was unveiled at X019 in London today and tells the story of twins Tyler and Alyson Ronan -- both of whom are playable -- who are exploring their memories of a troubled childhood through the unique bond they have.

Dontnod has worked with Microsoft and LGBTQ media advocacy organisation GLAAD to ensure Tyler serves as an authentic representation of the trans experience. Microsoft is proclaiming this as "the first playable video game hero from a major studio and publisher who is also transgender."

"Microsoft and Dontnod have approached Tyler with a real commitment to authenticity," said GLAAD director of transgender representation Nick Adams.

"Tyler is a fully-realised, endearing character, whose story is not reduced to simplistic trans tropes. Creating a playable lead trans character -- and taking such care to get it right -- raises the bar for future LGBTQ inclusion in gaming."

Tell Me Why will be released for Xbox One, Windows 10 PCs, XBox Game Pass and Steam in Summer 2020. The game will be released in three chapters over the course of the summer.

Gamesindustry.biz spoke to both Dontnod and Xbox Game Studios at X019 today. We'll have the full interview in the coming days.

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James Batchelor

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James Batchelor has been a journalist in the games industry since 2006, joining GamesIndustry in 2016, and also runs Non-Violent Game of the Day (@NVGOTD). He does play violent games, but always on Story/Easy mode.

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