Life Is Strange Accused of Exploiting Real-Life Murder

A Life is Strange player has discovered an oddly specific parallel between the events in the game and the murder of her mother. This isn’t the first time the franchise has been the subject of controversy.

The original Life is Strange released in 2015 as an episodic graphic adventure game, and has since garnered multiple sequels, a prequel, and countless remasters and re-releases of each title. While each title is steeped in supernatural elements, the series has been widely praised for its willingness to tackle very real and often taboo subjects, which may have played a factor in its success. Even eight years later, people are still talking about the game, but not always in a positive way.

This article will have SPOILERS for Life is Strange

More than a decade ago, a Florida woman named Sunday Bloomberg was murdered by her own in-laws, who were desperate for custody of their daughter. On TikTok in 2020, her now-teenage daughter, Isabella, pointed out similarities between her personal loss and the death of the “Life is Strange” character Rachel. The two disappeared on the same day, were killed in similar ways for similar reasons, had similar disappearance poster designs, and even had similar details in their life stories at the time of their deaths. Both women even share a ton of similar physical features, such as hazel eyes, matching heights, and tattoo placement. The most bizarre detail so far is that Rachel’s phone number is the same one police used in Sunday’s murder, despite swapping area codes.

Sunday’s nephew Skylur further explained that Rachel’s personality is very similar to his aunt’s, and her father Reign reportedly started crying after reopening such an old wound. The entire family is insulted that their loved one’s death has been reset and shared with the world without their permission, but Isabella insists she still loves the game, and even Skylur admits to seeing It’s cool that his aunt is immortalized in video game form. Still, many fans are demanding answers from the original game’s developer, Don’t Nod.

For better or worse, fictional art is known to channel reality, often consciously or not, whether through clever allegory or characters who espouse beliefs that match those of their creators. Often, creators add a disclaimer stating that everything is fiction and any resemblance to the real world is purely coincidental, but sometimes this is thrown out the window, with some even admitting that their work is based on real events. This likely won’t be the last time such parallels are spotted in video games.

Life is Strange is available for Android, iOS, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One, and legacy platforms.

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