Once upon a time, in a lush green land surrounded by the rains of November, lived an Overlord with a library of tea, and numerous forms of entertainment that lay plentiful at their fingertips. After days of wielding guns, and fulfilling quests spanning from one universe to the next, the Overlord wanted to only hear a story. For each day the Overlord looks upon their library to begin, revisit or continue a new story, and Tell Me Why was the story of choice on a Saturday of chill.
Tell Me Why is developed by Dontnod, the same company that brought us the Life Is Strange series (which admittedly I need to finish, so many stories and so little time!) and pretty much carries the same spirit as the LiS series. Tell Me Why tells the story of two twins (Alyson and Tyler) who reunite with one another after ten years of being apart after a tragic incident involving one of the twins having to kill their own mother in self defense (this game sets the tone very quickly). In this universe you play from the perspective of Tyler, and much like most other Dontnod games, any choices you make in dialogue may or may not come back to bite you in the ass later on…
Right at the start of the game, one of the twins confesses to a cop about killing their mom in self defense after she freaked out over her child’s haircut, and later on in the game when they go through their old home they both recall memories of their mother in a not so positive light, and mainly refer to her as Mary-Ann. When searching through the upstairs bedroom you find “The Book Of Goblins”, It’s basically a storybook the two twins and mother put together over 10 years ago.
The twins constantly refer to themselves as the goblins, and the mother is portrayed as a Princess, and everyone else in the storybook is portrayed as an animal — I’m guessing they represent friends or family. It’s early on in the game, but when reading through the book I can tell some of these stories might have a deeper meaning than what would merely appear as a child’s personal adventure book. It appears to be necessary for solving certain puzzles.
The twins share a power called “The Voice”. It enables them to hear each others thoughts and feel how the other feels. They remember this lost power while trying to figure out how to get into the house, but they also discover a newer power: Projecting their memories like a hologram:
Tyler and Alyson witness a few different memories throughout the property; some helping them with certain puzzles, and childhood memories both light and dark. In having to walk around their old home, they also have to endure literally reliving their childhood. Tyler and Alyson bare witness to memories that range from simple childhood memories of finding treasure and telling stories, to dark memories of Mary-Ann. In this particular instance Tyler is remembering his mother, either not understanding or not wanting to understand that she is actually a he. I know a few people who are trans, one of them I’ve worked along side since my early beginnings, and I can only commend their bravery in finding out who they really are and braving the world with their knowledge. Much like Life Is Strange, this story game definitely makes the mind think about other perspectives, and sometimes that is necessary in order to understand where people are coming from.
I’ll need to return to this one, and I need to finish Life Is Strange! I think I have one more chapter to do. I remember getting depressed about something that happened in the game, and not feeling ready to go back to it. It’s easy to do when you have so many games to pick through. 😛