(This is not to be confused with Lifeline, a Support Legend of Apex Legends, and, coincidentally, is voiced by Mela Lee, not Mari Lee, of the White Star)
The Lifeline series are a succession of games developed by 3 Minute Games, the group being founded in 2014, and releasing Lifeline in 2015. It was at first an experimental mobile studio formerly part of Big Fish Games. It is now an active and fully independent studio. According to their website, it is run by Colin Liotta, Mark Justus, and Mars Jokela. The Lifeline games are a series of interactive text adventures with varied themes, including but not limited to Sci-Fi, survival, fantasy, adventure, mystery, and detective simulation. The series currently has 8 games. As of January 2022, Lifeline games has announced that a new game will be released sometime soon. It will be called "Lifeline: Beside You in Time," and it will continue Taylor's story following Lifeline: Halfway to Infinity. As of June 17, 2022, the newest game was finally released.
The games usually treats you, the player (or perhaps a more adequate analogy could be that of the stranger), into a supportive character role to help the main character make decisions. While the player usually controls the flow of the story, the main characters will sometimes refuse to listen to the player's advice and go off on their own. The player will be communicating with the characters with some communicator, with Lifeline 2: Bloodline relying on magic witchcraft and Lifeline: Crisis Line relying on a phone app called HelpText.
Usually, the main character is in trouble, and he/she needs your help to get out of it. While most games have one "true" ending, many choices will lead to the main character dying, very rarely, some will have other alternative endings with the main character surviving, but a twist. After you find one of the endings, the game will unlock the Rewind and Fast Mode options. Rewind allows the player to rewind to a player-made choice, rewinding the whole game up to that point. Fast Mode allows the player to skip the waiting times between messages.
These games feature a real-time waiting system between messages. The main character will write messages and complete activities at a human pace (walking, driving, sleeping, etc.). The main character will close communications until something happens during the task or until they finish the task. The waiting time on tasks can be from under a minute to over 8 hours.
The Lifeline series currently has 8 official games and Lifeline: Whiteout 2. However, the latter game is not recognized on the 3 Minute Games website. On their page, the 8 official games are categorized in sections: Save Taylor (Lifeline, Lifeline: Silent Night, and Lifeline: Halfway to Infinity, Lifeline: Beside You in Time), The Green Series (Lifeline 2: Bloodline, Lifeline: Crisis Line, and Lifeline: Flatline), and More Lifeline (Lifeline: Whiteout). So far, the games in the Save Taylor series are directly related to each other, the games in The Green series are indirectly related to each other and to the Save Taylor series, and the game in the More Lifeline series is the only game not yet known if it is related to the other series. The following games are listed in chronological order as to when each game was released:
- Lifeline - First entry into the series. The player assists Taylor with survival on a barren moon.
- Lifeline 2: Bloodline - Second game in the series. The player assists Arika Lanphear with avenging her family's death.
- Lifeline: Silent Night - Direct sequel to the original Lifeline game. The player joins back with Taylor to assist with an unknown vessel coming into contact with the ship Taylor is onboard.
- Lifeline: Whiteout - Fourth entry in the series. The player helps V. Adams to uncover his past amidst a freezing environment.
- Lifeline: Crisis Line - Fifth entry in the series. The player is a HelpText volunteer connected to Alex Esposito, a police detective in Austin, Texas, who is involved in a strange case related to a murder.
- Lifeline: Flatline - Direct sequel to Lifeline: Silent Night, with Taylor trapped within the orbit of a strange black hole.
- Lifeline: Halfway to Infinity - Direct sequel to Lifeline: Silent Night, with Taylor trapped within the orbit of a strange black hole
- Lifeline: Beside You in Time-Direct sequel to Lifeilne: Halfway to Infinity, continuing the story of Taylor's journey past black holes
Discontinued games in the series include the Lifeline Library and Lifeline Universe. A likely discontinued game is Lifeline: Whiteout 2, which continues the story of Lifeline: Whiteout, by which the player helps V. Adams escape from a mine controlled by ALT. Note that this game is not on the apple store and is not featured on the 3 Minute Games website.
The Lifeline Universe
The first story and its two sequels are set in space, more specifically on an alien moon and onboard space ships. Others occur across our planet, such as by an unknown tundra region, across various parts of the Pacific Northwest (in Oregon and Washington, i.e., New Tenacity), Austin (Texas), La Rumorosa (Mexico), and includes secret organizations, some of which feature alien-based parasites and magical properties.
Important features throughout the series are the Green, ALT, the Permanent Working Group, the Pearson Corporation, magic, and tunguskite. Reoccurring narrators of the game so far involve Taylor and V. Adams, but the series has indicated that Arika, Alex, and Wynn will later appear as well. Other reoccurring characters involve Regina Virdi, Blue, Captain Aya, Mari Lee, and Melanie (Mel) Choir.
Music and Art
A link to most, if not all of the Lifeline Series music can be found here.
The official page by the creators can be found here.