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This Xbox Game Is Making History With Its Trans Lead Character

This Xbox Game Is Making History With Its Trans Lead Character

This Xbox Game Is Making History With Its Trans Lead Character

Dontnod Entertainment's Tell Me Why is making major moves for trans representation in the video game world! 

byraffy

Although there's a lot more that needs to be done when it comes to LGBTQ+ representation in video games, major victories are being won all the time, as evidenced by a new Xbox title called Tell Me Why.

According to a recent feature from the Los Angeles Times, the latest project from French video game developers Dontnod Entertainment is making history for its inclusion of a playable trans lead character, something that is still extremely rare in gaming. 

"These stories aren’t told frequently," Clay Carmouche, Xbox Publishing's narrative director, told the Times about Tell Me Why's main storyline that includes a trans male character named Tyler Ronan, who is voiced by trans actor August Black. "Every time you attempt to tell a story it tends to get a lot of scrutiny. There’s a legacy of bad representation of all the marginalized characters in the game. People can be very mistrustful, maybe a little less optimistic that the portrayals are going to be empathic. So that FAQ was making clear, 'Look, here’s where we’re going to go. If the story is going to go into a place you don’t want to go, here’s your off-ramp.'"

Tell Me Why, a family-drama narrative that is going to be released in three parts over the course of the next few weeks, tells the story of twin siblings Alyson and Tyler Ronan as they "return to their small Alaskan town to sell their childhood home," according to the game's official description. "As they sift through memories, ghostly images from their childhood cast doubt on what they remember about their mother's final days."

"The good thing about the game, I think, is that it strikes a nice balance of not shying away from the fact that Tyler is trans and showing the way in which it affects him, and mostly that relates to how other people react to him," Nick Adams, director of transgender representation at GLAAD and one of Tell Me Why's consultants, told the Times. "They have thoughts and opinions of him being a transgender man that they express to him, but that’s not what the real story is about. I think that balance of not ignoring Tyler‘s transness, as if it doesn’t affect his life, but not making it the central focus is one of the things Tell Me Why does well."

When it comes to trans representation and visibility in the video games and media we consume, hopefully, more projects will follow in Tell Me Why's footsteps! 

Chapter One of Tell Me Why is available now. Watch the trailer for Tell Me Why in the video below!

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Raffy Ermac

Digital Director, Out.com

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel