Having recently regained possession of my PS3 and restarting my Playstation Plus account, I looked thru the free content available at the time and came across Walking Dead Eps 1 and 2. Being an essentially free title offered thru Plus, I was not in a hurry to get to them. After receiving a thrashing in Madden 13 online and testing out Outland, I gave Walking Dead a shot. I’m sure glad I did.
Many games have alluded to giving the player “options” that steer the story in various directions. Some do it well, having drastic effects on the story and characters, others camouflage a linear experience with “choice”. Walking Dead is of the former, but I write this because it takes this direction and evolves upon it. Granted, I’ve been out of the gaming scene for a little bit and don’t know if the gameplay and story here have become the norm, but I highly doubt it.
First off, the graphics are awesome, just enough detail to make you feel like you’re truly interacting with this word. The art style is cartoon-ish in color only, realistic enough to pull you in. This is an old school adventure game at its core, so those not familiar or more accustomed to fast paced input may be disappointed here. If you’re patient, you’ll be able to enjoy the amazing pacing, plot, and tense gameplay the Walking Dead episodes have offered up thus far.
Initially, I though “episodic content” was a rip off and would lessen the quality of the game. I was wrong. Though they may be cashing in on these episodes, the games offer a rare opportunity to craft a very detailed pace in a small package and also edit any issues with the game as they go along without having to release huge updates.
To round out this sporadic review, I love this game so much (so far) because it makes me care about my decisions and characters. Most times when you choose a reply for the main character or make a certain move, the game will tell you who saw it or what they think about it. This small detail will make you carefully weigh your decisions as the game goes on. Example: I was so frustrated with an antagonist that I acted out of my usual character and killed him when I could have let him live. Subsequently, the game told me Clementine, the first grader you’re tasked with taking care of, will remember that I killed him when I had another choice. Clementine also showed her displeasure by hiding behind another character when I spoke to her. I suggest everyone give at least Episode 1 a shot. You won’t regret it.