I only played The Walking Dead Game Season 1, because I got the first episode out of five for free on my iPad and did not expect to like it. After finishing the first episode of season one, I had to find out what happens next and bought the remaining four episodes. The Walking Dead Game is more interactive movie, or comic based on its art style and it being based on The Walking Dead comic book, than a video game, but that is okay when the dialogue and story is as good as it is in The Walking Dead Game. With season 1 making developer and publisher Telltale Games a lot of money, receiving great reviews from critics, and helping make a dying genre in point and click adventure games popular again, expectations were high going into season 2.
The biggest question I had about season 2, is playing as Clementine, a little girl that was 8 years old in season 1 and is around 10 in season 2, as good as playing as Lee, a grown man? This was a real concern for me going into the game, because it would be much harder for a 10 years old girl to fight zombies and in a game all about choosing different dialogue options to influence your group of survivors. How was a ten year old girl going to get enough respect from adults to the point where players’ decisions matter and the game does not come of as silly. Luckily Telltale Games proved they have some of the best writers in any form of media, and in All That Remains episode one out of five the players quickly learn the answer to my question is yes. A major issues players have to deal with in All That Remains is meeting your new group of survivors with a dog bite that they believe might be a zombie bite and trying to convince them that your not infected. This situation makes use of your character’s age. If a grown man like Lee from the first game came alone to a group of survivors he never meet and showed them a bite that he told them he got from a dog they would not believe him and send him away, but they would feel bad about sending a ten year old girl away. Just like it was hard for me to see how a ten year old girl could survive on her own in the zombie apocalypse, it is also hard for this new group to see this and they do not want to reject Clementine sending her to her death if they do not have to. So this new group of survivors choose to lock Clementine into a shed for the night to see if she turning into a zombie or shows any signs that she might, but not before the game allows the player to choose someone in the new group using child cuteness to kiss up to hoping to convince the group not to force her into a shed alone for the night. Being able to make it on your own, making ruthless decision that others are unwilling to make, and that near hopeless situations can make a good person into an evil one are issues that the player will have to tackle throughout season 2. Like season 1, season 2 is one of the rare games that will make the players feel emotional about every decision they make and feel the need to play the next episode to find out how it all ends. And as far as the ending goes season 2 has multiple endings that are pretty different unlike the original endings for Mass Effect 3.
Finding negatives for a game this good is difficult, but this is the review format I chosen so here are a few negatives. The new group of characters are not as good as the season one characters. I just didn’t have the same emotional attachment to Luke, Carlos, Sarah, or Rebecca as I did with Carly, Kenny, or Ben, so when main characters die, as is the case in The Walking Dead, I didn’t care as much. The supporting character issue is not that big of a deal, after considering a great new villain in Carver, the return of a season 1 character who is still compelling a second time around, and the people around Clementine still affect her in interesting ways. There are also fewer moments to talk to characters and choose to ask them personal questions as the first season, so that could be the reason why I did not connect to the new characters. A possible issue could be that there are less gameplay options than season 1. With the exception of having to find stiches in episode one ALL That Remains, there are few puzzles that will remotely challenge players and are not nearly to the level of season 1’s fixing the train in episode 3 Long Road Ahead. The biggest issue is that there are times with no clear direction to where the game is going. This is only an issue in All That Remains and episode four Amid The Ruins, but in both cases the following episode gives the player a clear objective and are some of the best episodes in both seasons.
The Walking Dead Game Season 2 is a great game. It is faster paced than season 1, your goal is not as clear as season 1’s keep Clementine safe, and it is more interactive more than game, but the story is so compelling I cannot think of a better way to spend 25-30 bucks, based on if you buy the physical copy or digital. This is a game I am proud to give a 9 out of 10 and is prefect for people that upgraded to the PS4 or Xbox One and did not get to play it until it comes out for next gen consoles in October.
While The Walking Dead Game Season 2 does have some flaws and not all five episodes are created equal, overall it is a great game.