The sequel to Telltale Games's The Walking Dead, the game now follows Clementine. Will she survive, or will she parish in a world where survival means running faster than the guy next to you?
Set sixteen months after the events of the first game, the story now follows Clementine, one of the last survivors from the previous group. Having lost everyone from her original group due to separation or death, Clementine now finds herself with a new and unfamiliar group of survivors as they try to avoid a man by the name of Carver and the group that he leads.
The Walking Dead: Season Two continues from where the previous title left off, now following Clementine as the protagonist and following her side of the story after the events of The Walking Dead. Just like in the previous game, The Walking Dead: Season Two progresses based on the choices you make along the way. As an added bonus, The Walking Dead: Season Two also lets you import your saves from The Walking Dead and The Walking Dead: 400 Days to let you start the game with the choices you made before. The game is also still in development, with the rest of the episodes expected to be released between each quarter of this year.
Visually, the game takes on a comic-style appearance to portray the series as it’s shown in the comic books, much like its predecessor had done. Surprisingly, this actually helps with some of the characters and how they show their emotions through facial expressions. Unfortunately, the game doesn’t seem to have any visual improvements when compared to The Walking Dead, which makes the game feel more like an expansion to the previous title than an actual sequel; you have a handful of new characters and an older version of Clementine at best, but most of the things you see is just re-used content. That doesn’t exactly make the game bad, but it doesn’t really help make it feel like a new game if it looks almost exactly the same.
"Oh hey, I remember you from last time!"
The game also continues to make extensive use of ambient sounds and music to help set the mood for the game, just as before. The musical score that you hear through the game also helps with letting the player know what kind of situation they’re in; however, there isn’t very much to the ambience or the musical score at this time due to the game only having the first episode released so far. The game also makes use of some of the sounds used in the previous game, which further makes the game feel more like an expansion than an actual sequel.
When it comes to the actual gameplay, the game continues to behave like an interactive story that allows the player to examine or use objects they find throughout the game, as well as allowing the player to take part in quick-time events and puzzles. The game itself isn’t very long at this point in time though, so there isn’t much to go on; however, there are a couple things that can be taken note of with the first episode. The first thing to take note of is how different the new group seems to be when compared with the group from the last game; aside from a few of them, the new group seems to be rather aggressive and just comes across as generally unlikeable, while the group from The Walking Dead seemed a bit more friendly and welcoming (which also made them a bit more likeable). The second thing to take note of is the lack of a background story behind each character; in previous game, everyone had a story behind them about their lives before the zombies, while this game doesn’t really seem to have a background story for any of the new characters that were introduced. Although these aren’t major things to be concerned about, games like this usually benefit from having some sort of knowledge behind the characters, and there is little to no knowledge behind most of the new characters that have been introduced this time around.
As with any new game, there are bound to be at least a few bugs. Fortunately, The Walking Dead: Season Two only seems to have a few very minor bugs that aren’t game breaking. The first bug that I managed to come across happened to be a small visual bug with the trees in the game; when viewed from a certain distance (which is usually during certain cut-scenes), some of the trees seem to have odd looking textures that look nothing like the rest of trees around them, making them stand out more than they should. Another bug involved some of the objects you see laying around; it doesn’t seem to happen all the time, but some objects will appear to be hovering just slightly above the ground at random times. The final bug that I came across involved certain input options not functioning as intended; even though most of the game has you interact with the environment through the use of your mouse and a small dial of sorts that gives you a few options to choose from when interacting with certain objects in the game, there are times where certain options will be showing and the player can’t click on the option until they move the mouse away and bring it back over the object. This can be a bit annoying at times, but it only seems to happen with certain objects.
Overall, The Walking Dead: Season Two, or at least what’s been released so far as of Episode 1, doesn’t really seem like a step up from The Walking Dead. The ambience of the game definitely helps to keep the mood like before, but the new cast of characters really takes away from the game with how unwelcoming they are. The game also seems a bit unappealing when compared to its predecessor, considering that it looks almost exactly the same. Of course, the game only has one episode out right now, so there’s still time to see whether or not the story and characters will improve in the future. I can honestly say that it would be better to play the first game before playing The Walking Dead: Season Two, at least so you can know what happened prior to this game.