Twin Mir­ror

With yet another game on the hori­zon, Dontnod is on a roll

XBox: The Official Magazine (US) - - PREVIEW - Adam Bryant

PUB­LISHER Bandai Namco De­vel­oper Dontnod For­mat Xbox One ETA 2019

Dontnod cer­tainly isn’t mess­ing around: First we get su­per­nat­u­ral ad­ven­ture game Vampyr, then a short but heart-melt­ing tale in The Awe­some

Ad­ven­tures Of Cap­tain Spirit, and later this year we’ll see the re­lease of the much an­tic­i­pated se­quel to Life Is

Strange. In the space of a year we’ve seen the re­lease of three games from the French de­vel­op­ment stu­dio, so it comes as a sur­prise that it’ll be ready to serve up yet another nar­ra­tive-driven ad­ven­ture game next year.

Twin Mir­ror is a story-driven psy­cho­log­i­cal thriller where you play as Sam, an in­ves­tiga­tive jour­nal­ist re­cov­er­ing from a re­cent break-up. Sam re­turns home to the fic­tional town of Bass­wood, West Vir­ginia, to at­tend the fu­neral of his best friend who also just so hap­pens to be a jour­nal­ist. But in true Dontnod fash­ion, things take a turn for the worse as Sam wakes up in a ho­tel room to dis­cover his shirt cov­ered in some­one else’s blood. Con­fused and with no rec­ol­lec­tion of the pre­vi­ous night, Sam heads out to in­ves­ti­gate and un­cover the truth.

With this lat­est en­try it ap­pears that Dontnod is look­ing to take the best el­e­ments of its pre­vi­ous games—nar­ra­tive, in­ves­ti­ga­tion, and con­ver­sa­tion choices—and meld them into some­thing more se­ri­ous and ma­ture. This is re­flected in not only the art style, which looks darker and more muted than its pre­vi­ous games, but in a nar­ra­tive tone that seems like some­thing out of a tele­vi­sion drama.


Al­though you’ll be pre­dom­i­nantly in­ves­ti­gat­ing by talk­ing to the peo­ple of Bass­wood and ex­plor­ing the en­vi­ron­ment, there is more to the game than it be­ing sim­ply a mys­tery thriller. This will be a much deeper and more ex­is­ten­tial ti­tle than any­thing we’ve seen from the stu­dio and you’ll be faced with themes of ac­cep­tance and of com­ing back home. The main aim of this is to take you on an emo­tional jour­ney, and for you to feel in con­trol of that jour­ney.

All of the de­ci­sions you make dur­ing the game, be it in con­ver­sa­tion choices or through how you in­ter­act with the en­vi­ron­ment, im­pact the game in some way. They don’t sim­ply dic­tate the end­ing you’ll re­ceive, of which there are many—in­stead the game­play is tightly in­ter­wo­ven with the nar­ra­tive. Al­though it’s not say­ing too much, Dontnod is promis­ing in­no­va­tive game­play that will be di­rectly linked with the nar­ra­tive.

Dontnod has a knack for cre­at­ing com­pelling story-driven games, and we don’t ex­pect Twin Mir­ror to be any dif­fer­ent. De­spite re­leas­ing so many games in such a short amount of time, it doesn’t seem that Dontnod is suf­fer­ing from any sort of burnout.

“There is more to this game than be­ing sim­ply a mys­tery thriller”

Be­low This im­age alone does a great job of set­ting the game’s mood.

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