REVIEW / Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy: The Telltale Series – Episode 1 (PS4)

 

If you’re like me, you get excited whenever you see “The Telltale Series” following a game title that’s going to be released soon. Telltale Games has been consistently been wracking their teams’ brains, creating very interesting stories for other popular series after its home run with The Walking Dead series in 2012. From Game of Thrones to Borderlands to  Minecraft to Batman, lots of properties have entrusted their characters to Telltale’s story tellers. This year, Telltale Games worked with the other big comic publisher for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy: The Telltale Series. The timing of the game is just perfect, since a movie about them came out a couple of years ago and its sequel is out soon in a few weeks.

 

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Telltale Games is well-known for creating alternate stories with the series it is working on, and the same can be said for Guardians of the Galaxy. In this tale, the Guardians team – consisting of Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax, Rocket Raccoon, and Groot – was able to defeat the biggest menace in the whole galaxy. After that epic battle, the team stumbles on an seemingly mundane item that ends up being the pivotal element in the story. That’s because a new threat to the galaxy emerges and wants that item for its tremendous power.

In the first episode, we get a little bit of the story so far. The power that the item the team stumbles upon isn’t quite clear to us yet. Also, the big choices we have to make in this first episode doesn’t seem to have a really big impact on the story, but I am sure at least two of those big choices will show their repercussions in the next episode or so. I’m not going to try to spoil those big choices, but I can say that none of them were life or death choices.

 

 

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I do have to commend Telltale Games for sticking true to the Marvel Comics essence with Guardians of the Galaxy. If you’ve seen, read, or even played a Marvel Comics brand, you know that frivolity is always tacked somewhere somehow to relieve the tensions the superheroes are going through. Such is the case with Guardians of the Galaxy; there are many comedic moments even during the heat of the battle that made me chuckle or laugh. Also, the team is true to their comic and movie personalities: Star-Lord is funny and a bit of a jerk sometimes, Drax is angry but not really angry, and Groot is just, well, Groot.

Speaking of the characters, the cool aspect of the story is that while the main character is definitely Star-Lord, some time is also given to the other teammates to explore a little bit of their backstories as well. In fact, there’s portions of the episode where Star-Lord is given some time to speak to the other teammates individually, and the opportunity to learn more about their pasts is a dialogue option. Also, if the synopsis of the rest of the other episodes are of any indication on what we will see in the future, then we are for sure going to learn more about the rest of the team.

 

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Gameplay-wise, Guardians of the Galaxy is just like any other Telltale Games series. It’s a visual novel that consists of picking responses and choices as well as some light point-and-click aspects. A refreshing gameplay element that I really haven’t seen from a Telltale Games series before is the ability for Star-Lord to contact his teammates when he’s away from them. It allows for extra dialogue and commentary and sometimes a hint on what to do next.

Overall, the first episode of the Guardians of the Galaxy sets up a very interesting alternate story for the Marvel brand. While the episode focuses a lot on Star-Lord, plenty of time is given to the other teammates to explore their backstories as well. The choices picked on this episode, while not showing immediate consequences, will definitely unfold in the next few episodes.

 

 

 

This review is based on a retail copy of the game provided by the publisher.

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