Thursday, 30 August 2012

GAME REVIEW: The Walking Dead Episode Three

Blah blah blah choices. Blah blah blah point and click.  Blah blah blah zombies. This will be a short review as I’m not going to go into detail about the third episode of Telltale Games Walking Dead series, mostly because I’ve done it twice already and anything I say, including some of the stuff below will just me saying the same thing again, ie. it’s brilliant.

What I will say is that this is perhaps the most emotionally involving episode yet, with events happening that have rivalled some of the best films of recent years. To use an example, remember in LA Confidential when SPOILERS Kevin Spacey gets shot? Well, there is a moment in Episode 3 that shocked me to the core in the way that that did. And it shows how invested I am in the story that I hastily lashed out in anger (my own anger, not Lee’s) and made a choice I wouldn’t normally have made. And as pleasantly surprised as I was that Episode 2 went to the dark dark places it did, this third episode goes to those places and then some. A tearful encounter in the forest sticks out as a highlight; a triumph of storytelling, art design, voice acting and direction.

There were a few new additions this time round as well; for the first time, you’re able to actually fire a gun at certain points when zombies and bandits attack. It’s very basic but it works. And in keeping with the tone of the game, you’re even given a choice at times over if you actually want to shoot or not. It’s this kind of complexity that elevates it over other recent games; for example, right at the very start you’re given the choice to kill a woman in the distance who has been bitten, or keep her alive to draw the zombies to her. I went for the latter, and hated myself for it. But it made sense in the moment, and meant as the zombies were distracted I could get more supplies for the group.

So overall, this is one game series that’s going from strength to strength, and I cannot wait for the next episode of the best game I’ve played this year.

5 stars

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