So my experience with The Walking Dead has mainly been with the television series on AMC. I know that the series is based on the comic book series, but I really don’t read comics. As for zombies, well my experience with them dates back to when I was a young zombie slayer through my ever expanding imagination from reading books and watching movies. Yes, I had cool parents who let me watch Rated “R” movies. Currently, I get my zombie fix from the first two seasons of the television series on Blu-ray, but when I learned that The Walking Dead (based on the comic books) was coming to Xbox 360 I really got excited. Then there was the part where I found out that there were five episodes with one releasing each month. I thought that sucked, because I’m sure the anticipation to see what happens next drove everyone crazy. Well I decided to wait until all five episodes were available so I can just play them all without the agonizing wait in between. Well let me tell you that the long wait was worth every minute.

PROS:

Lee Everett
From a convicted felon to a near father figure for young Clementine, my experience playing as main protagonist Lee Everett was amazing. Probably the best character I’ve ever played due to the fact that all his actions and decisions were based on my choices. Like a choose your own adventure book, I helped shape what Lee would eventually become, and I’m quite satisfied with the results whether I wanted to be somewhat of a good man or a complete asshole and not give a shit. This is the zombie apocalypse by the way. Making friends, along with trusting others, can be a little tough especially considering that I’m taking care of a little girl who just wants to get back to her family.

For Clementine
Other than Lee, Clementine plays such a key role in the actions I chose to partake in. She may be a little girl that I’m protecting, but when you think about it she can also be quite impressionable. Killing the “Walkers” or even certain people can come at a price especially if Clementine is around when it happens. For example: I took a hammer and beat the former babysitter’s head in a few times and Clementine watched in horror as it happened. The screen said that she will remember it. This sort of had me second guessing about how I choose to kill, because I surely didn’t want to scar her for life. Then again it is the zombie apocalypse right? For me it was all about keeping Clementine alive, and I did just that through my adventure.

The Story And Overall Atmosphere
I really liked the point and click style of storytelling that Telltale Games uses. Coming from some of their previous games I played including Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Adventures and Sam and Max Save the World, The Walking Dead was more of a shock to me. I never thought I’d see Telltale make a game on a more “mature” angle, but they pulled it off perfectly. Sure the graphics may resemble something on the lines of a Saturday morning cartoon, but the game’s theme is far from it especially with moments where I blew a cop’s head off with a shotgun, and watching Walkers devour people piece by piece. The best part is that Telltale Games kept to the series’ dark-sided roots. I also liked how they incorporated new characters to the series like they were always there as well as seeing a few regulars along for the ride including Hershel Greene and Glenn.

Decisions, Decisions
What makes this game so unique is the tough decisions I had to make. Who do I choose to align myself with? This determines how characters reacted to me. The most important decision was the tough choice deciding on who lives and who dies? That decision alone shapes the overall course of the game. I always wondered whether I was making the right choices, because I could really feel the weight of the decision and the pain that Lee Everett suffers through. Later on, when an episode ends, I get to see a board with the overall community’s decisions just to see if other people agreed with me. Now I wonder what happens if I went in the other direction. I smell replay value.

CONS:

Easy Achievements
I’m really disappointed with the overall easiness of earning achievements in this game. Just completing each episode gave me all the available achievements. Sure the achievement whore in me is quite happy as I add another game to the completion list, but I what I really wanted was some sort of extra challenge on some of the achievements making that “Achievement Unlocked” tone more worthy of attaining. Hopefully Telltale Games works on that for Season 2.

The Long Wait For Season 2
I now understand the anticipation that gamers had when anxiously awaiting new episodes every month. I waited for five months just to get all the episodes, and now I have to wait even longer for the next season to come along just to see where the story goes next. I feel your pain everyone, because waiting sucks.

IN CONCLUSION

Sure it’s a point and click game, but The Walking Dead feels like it’s so much more. Left 4 Dead it is not. The Walking Dead is a game filled with amazing storytelling, character development, intense drama, and tough decision making. Basically what this boils down to is an amazing experience that should not be missed by anyone. I enjoyed my time with this game and I plan on revisiting the drama and horror again and again. The Walking Dead is a definite must buy for any fan of the series whether it’s the comic books or the television series. Maybe it’s time for me to read those comic books as well.

Developer: Telltale Games
Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
Players: 1
Price: 2000 Microsoft Points ($25.00)

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  1. […] For my original review of The Walking Dead click HERE […]

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