Telltale games, the independent developer and publisher, based in San Rafael, California, that has brought us games like, Back to the Future: The Game, Sam & Max: The Devil’s Playhouse, and Law & Order: Legacies is considered to be the only company to have done episodic gaming right.
Telltale’s latest effort is The Walking Dead game, an action adventure based on Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comic book series, which is set in the same period witnessed by Sheriff Rick Grimes but tells the story of a new group of survivors as they survive in the full of undead city of Atlanta. In Telltale fashion the series will consist of five monthly episodes.
“Rather than retelling the story of Deputy Sheriff Rick Grimes, the game tells the story of a new character – Lee Everett – who exists in the same world and roughly the same geographical location as Rick. In terms of comic book timeline, our story begins when Rick is still in a coma. The decision to tell a new story was made by Telltale and Robert Kirkman, creator of The Walking Dead. We felt that re-telling Rick’s story didn’t make much sense because most people will know what would come next”, said by Jake Rodkin – Writer and Designer at Telltale Games on the developer’s decision to create a new story for the game.
The first episode in the 5 part series titled A New Day was released on April 25th and became the company’s fastest-selling game series to date, managing to download more than one million users across PC, Mac, PlayStation Network and Xbox LIVE Arcade. The second episode, Starved for Help, was released the week of June 27, 2012, while Episode 3, Long Road Ahead, was released on August 28, 2012 for the US PSN, and August 29, 2012 for XBLA, PC and Mac.
The first two episodes received generally favorable reviews leading many to state that this series could be Telltale’s masterpiece. Can Telltale amaze us for a third time in a row? The answer lies in the following pages.
Sound & Vision
The first thing you’ll notice in The Walking Dead is that its in-game characters are beautiful delivered. Telltale’s designers have done an excellent job and brought some of the most memorable hand-drawn character’s we’ve seen in any game recently. Every movement and face gesture, are so intense that many times you’ll find yourself staring at the characters rather than following their conversation.
But it’s not only the characters that make the game stand from the crowd, the whole game looks like an interactive comic book where you can move in every location, interact with objects and other characters, and find the evidence that will help you understand what is happening within the game.
Thankfully the game’s music is in the same level as the graphics. The tracks you get to hear in the game fit every scene in the game perfectly. At times they follow your anxiety of what will happen next, while the absent of any music for a couple of minutes feel like the calm before the storm. The same can be said about the various sound effects. Dialogue between characters is a significant portion of the gameplay and the way that the story plays out will change depending on the choices that you make.