Life is Strange Deaf Accessibility
Score7.5 out of 10
- Main dialogue is subtitled,
- Subtitles have a variety of size options and letterboxing
- No speaker labels,
- Not all dialogue is subtitled which really detracts from the story
Life is Strange is, as far as we can tell, a game about the word “hella.”
There are hella white kids, there’s hella teen angst, there’s even a girl that says “hella” while having a gun held to her abdomen.
There are hella subtitle options.
Even at their default size setting, the subtitles are hella big.
And the difference between spoken dialogue and the angsty inner monologue is hella clear, thanks to italics.
It’s also hella ableist and clings to shitty tropes when discussing mental health.
What doesn’t Life is Strange have? Speaker labels. That’s what. We know Life is Strange was the first game to offer size options and it also offered a novel-at-the-time letterboxing option to make the text more legible, but they didn’t include one of the most basic accessibility features that makes a story-heavy game like this comprehensible for deaf players. You play through the whole game and unless there is only one character on the screen, you have no clue who is speaking, which makes the whole experience fall flat.
Is Life is Strange playable for deaf and hoh players? Yes, absolutely. But you may find it a bit difficult to follow due to the lack of speaker labels, despite hella options for subtitles otherwise in this very story-rich game.