Wowser! We’ve been Nominated as ‘Community Heroes’ by the Life Is Strange teams at Square Enix and DONTNOD.
We’re beyond thrilled to receive this recognition and I want to personally thank all my Staff who have helped me grow and maintain the site since it launched. In particular, I want to thank Mai, my Co-Admin, who has also taken on the roles of Staff Artist, Moderator and Counsellor. Her artwork defines every contest we’ve run since the landmark ‘Alt Character Fan Art’ Contest and has become integral to their success. Her work as a Counsellor on the site has literally transformed lives and she is never too busy to help those in need. As Co-Admin she has looked after the site multiple times in my absence, helped me make difficult decisions and contributed greatly to setting up the Contests and other projects.
Thank you also to Jamie, Joey and Jess for their work on the Blackwell Podcast (which also received a well-deserved Nomination) but also their help in voting on the Contests and contributing ideas for the future of the site.
Thank you to Zach, Nate, Ynno, Garrett and Zoli, for both their Moderating on site and their contributions to the Contests and site ideas. Thanks also to Nate for running our Tumblr.
Thank you to Mai, Kirk, Joey, Brooke, and Seth for any help they’ve given to other Members in private Counselling and any help they will continue to give as part of Kate’s Support Club.
And thanks to recently-instated Mods, Markus and Stevo, for their Moderating too.
Thank you to all those who have eased some of the financial burden by donating to the site over the past months. Running such a media-centric site isn’t cheap and it’s able to keep going because of your generous contributions. We appreciate all donations but I must mention one Member in particular, Jordan, who has donated every single month and has certainly donated the largest accumulated total by far. So a big thank you to him for his continuous support.
Thank you to DONTNOD and Square Enix, especially Community Manager Toby Palm, for supporting us throughout the year, promoting our Contests and keeping us motivated to be the best community we can.
Finally, I have to thank the community itself. Without the Fans to populate it our site would be a very quiet and empty place indeed. Instead, it teems with life and positivity literally every day. There’s always a conversation going on in the Public Chatroom, fans are uploading content such as Fan Art and Cosplay all the time, welcoming each other, sharing stories and giving feedback on each other’s work. Running LifeIsStrangeFans.com and the related social channels isn’t always easy, but it is made easier because of the fans. I know of no other gaming community that is as welcoming, inclusive and caring as the Life is Strange Community. It’s a pleasure to be part of and I’m proud to call many of the regular Members of the site my friends.
Life Is Strange is not just a game. It has become so much more than that. It has become shorthand for describing our own lives; for making sense of them; for making them that little bit better. And the Community that surrounds it is unlike any other. It is unique precisely because of its people, many of whom have suffered throughout their lives. As an extension of that, this site in particular, has also become more than just a fansite: it has transformed into a safe haven for lost souls; a beacon of hope; a cure for loneliness.
Thank you to all those who have the courage to share their work and their personal stories without fear of ridicule or toxic comments because those things simply don’t fly here, and never will. Everyone who has been affected by Life is Strange has a home here and in this second home, with this newfound family, they also have an opportunity to be themselves.
Alone, we are our thoughts in our empty rooms; we are our anxiety and our doubt; we are the puppeteers of our own psychological defeat.
But together, we are stronger, better people. When we interact, we are less anxious, we laugh more often, we feel the release of knowing that who we are is okay. We are accepted. Trusted. Loved.
To share a quote from one of my favourite books/movies, ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’:
‘We are infinite.’
It sums up this community perfectly. Because if we continue to ensure that it remains the absolute gold standard of what a community should aspire to be; if everything we stand for resonates through everything we do, offline as well as online; and if we continue to be here for others as well as ourselves, then yes:
Our home is unbreakable by any storm. Our values are immortal. And we are infinite.
Chris Anderson is the creator of Life Is Strange Fans. He is interested in all things creative, be that Film Making, Digital Art, 3D Art, Graphic Design and Video Game Development.
He is also an aspiring Writer and has been developing a fantasy series for over 10 years.