The Walking Dead review


Matt Hadden (Twitter, Google+)
3rd Jul 2013, 4:06pm

The Walking Dead from Telltale Games is based heavily off the comic books and is a point and click action adventure, something which is very different in today's style of gaming.

Telltale Games developed the title and have released 5 "episodes" of the game, with a new DLC, 400 Days set to release very soon. I have only played through the first two episodes so far but just one is enough to give you a good sense of what Telltale have set out to achieve here.

Story

If for some reason you don't actually know the story behind The Walking Dead, it is that a virus has emerged which reanimates the brain after death, causing dead people to rise from the grave and start roaming the streets.

You play as Lee Everett, a convicted criminal who has been given a second chance in the crazy world that he is now living in. You end up having to protect an orphaned girl named Clementine and stop at nothing to make sure that she is still safe in this crazy world.

You make some difficult choices along the way and the game is heavily influenced by the conversations that you have with people, the answers you give and the actions that you carry out in the world.

Gameplay

This isn't your average FPS or RPG game, this is a point and click action adventure game with a few quick time events thrown in for good measure. You move through the world using the WASD keys and can interact and observe various different items in the world as you try and stay alive and do what you can to protect those that you are with.

I haven't really played a game in this style before but I actually liked how it turned out, it's easy to move around and the objects that you can interact with are clearly marked so you never feel lost in the world, unsure of what to do.

There's a few puzzles along the way as well, as there normally are in point and click games, and the game lets you go about them at your own pace. It doesn't tell you how to solve the puzzle or give you any clues at all, sometimes its fairly simple and others it takes a bit of thinking to figure out. The puzzles that I've faced so far haven't been too hard or too easy and sometimes the solution isn't as obvious as you think either. There's also some humor thrown in along the way as well which is always nice.

The game has 5 episodes in total, all of which change things around drastically, and all of which have their own twists and turns. I've played the first two episodes so far and the story telling in them is amazing, you never know what's coming next.

The biggest feature of the game is the fact that it changes a lot depending on what actions you take, who you save, what you say in conversations and how you act in general. You get 3-4 choices a few times per conversation and you yourself have to balance what you say to each person, it can become quite tricky at times but I think that is what makes the game stand out. Do you lie to one person to please another or do you tell everyone the truth and cause a lot of friction on the way? These are all things you have to think about regularly as you play the game.

The biggest thing that The Walking Dead excels in is putting you under pressure, you get certain situations where you have to choose one thing over another. The things is, you have to do this in a very small amount of time and you need to figure out what the best option is, how saving that instead of this will affect the story and what happens later on down the line. It's something that I haven't really seen in a game before but it only gets harder as you go through the game. I think it gets you more involved in the story as well, instead of sitting back and watching some cut scene play out that you had no control over. Everything that happens in this game happens for a reason and the reason is the player, it's great. You also get a fancy screen at the end of each episode telling you what you did compared to everyone else.

Presentation

Since this game is obviously based off the The Walking Dead comics it has gone for the same art style that they use rather than some fancy AAA graphics that look awesome, and I don't mind one bit. I haven't seen any of the comics but the game looks good and honestly I don't think it would look right if the art style was different to that of the comics.

The menus and on-screen UI are all very minimal and it works well for the game, nothing cluttering up the screen other than the important objects and people that you need to interact with.

The voice acting and general sounds and atmosphere in the game are great as well, really I can't find anything at fault in the presentation side of things.

Overall

If you're a fan of The Walking Dead in either the comic or TV series form then you should definitely pick this up. It's something that's not seen a lot these days, a point-and-click action-adventure game and it serves the game well. The main selling point of the game has to be the fact that you can change the course of the entire game just by one wrong (or right) move somewhere along the line.

A game worthy of the The Walking Dead franchise and with the new DLC, 400 Days, due out soon, the 5 episode format has plenty to keep you entertained for a while to come. A gripping story that keeps you coming back for more is a rarity these days.

9 / 10

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