DONTNOD Entertainment (stylised as DONTИOD) are the developers of Life is Strange. They are an independent French video game development studio based in Paris. The studio was founded by former Criterion Games head Oskar Guilbert on June 2, 2008, together with co-founders Hervé Bonin, Aleksi Briclot, Alain Damasio and Jean-Maxime Moris along with other former Criterion Games, Ubisoft and Electronic Arts staff.
Their first game and AAA release was the third-person action brawler titled Remember Me. The game was published by Capcom in June 2013, and is an action-adventure sci-fi game based around a member of a resistance group looking to recover her lost memories.
In January, 2014, it was reported that the studio had filed for bankruptcy. CEO Oskar Guilbert dismissed reports that the studio was bankrupt and stated that earlier financial issues were no longer a problem for the company as they started to work on "new projects" which required judical reorganization and new investments.
Life is Strange is their second game, published by Square Enix. An episodic game, Life is Strange had the first episode released in January 2015, all five episodes released by October 2015.
Their third game, Vampyr, is currently in development and announced for November 2017. Vampyr is a role-playing game set in the early 20th century, about a doctor who has been bitten by a patient thought to have the Spanish flu.
On 27 July 2016, the formation of Dontnod Eleven (formerly HeSaw) as a sister studio to Dontnod was announced, and that Dontnod helped them developing the side-scrolling shooter Battlecrew: Space Pirates. "The goal of our collaboration is to help those talented independent developers and benefit from their know-how", CEO Oskar Guilbert said.
Michel Koch said in an interview in July 2016 that they have two teams at Dontnod, one working on Vampyr and one working on an exciting unannounced game, which later turned out to be Life is Strange 2 which was revealed on May 18, 2017.
During the development of Life is Strange, several people from Square Enix joined the development team at Dontnod:
- Alejandro Arque (Game Designer at Square Enix)
- Scott Blows (Community Manager at Square Enix, until 2015)
- Toby Palm (Community Manager at Square Enix, since 2015)
- The word "dontnod" is a palindrome, meaning it is spelled the same backwards as it is forwards.
- The word "dontnod" is in block letters.
- The laterally or vertically inverted letter "N" in DONTNOD Entertainment's company logo appears in the Cyrillic alphabet and is equivalent to the letter "I" in the English/Latin alphabet.
- On January 27, 2015, they had a Reddit AMA for Life is Strange.
- The Weatherman, a character in Life is Strange, is based off of and modeled by CEO Guilbert Oskar, as confirmed on Life is Strange's official Twitter
- There is graffiti on a shack near the lighthouse in Life is Strange of a symbol that represents the characters in a French novel by Alain Damasio, one of the co-founders of Dontnod Entertainment, named La Horde du Contrevent. Wind is a recurring theme in the novel, and upon looking at the graffiti, Max says, "Weird, those glyphs remind me of... the wind."
- There are two references to the lead environment artist Amaury Balandier hidden in Life is Strange. A member of the 2013 Yearbook Committee at Blackwell Academy is called Amaury. The soda cans in Chloe's room are a brand called "Pr. Amaury".
- ↑ Dontnod Entertainment Wikipedia entry
- ↑ Report: Remember Me studio Dontnod filing for bankruptcy (January 31, 2014)
- ↑ Dontnod deepens collaboration with Hesaw (July 28, 2016)
- ↑ Dontnod Eleven isn't catering to Life is Strange fans, and that’s the point (August 19, 2016)
- ↑ Life Is Strange interview – live action web series and sequel talk (Metro.co.uk) (July 27, 2016)
- ↑ Twitter post