The Walking Dead: Season 2, Episode 1
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Game Reviewed: The Walking Dead: Season 2, Episode 1
Publisher: Telltale Games
Developer: Telltale Games
Platform: PC, Mac, Xbox 360, PS3, iOS
ESRB Rating: M
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The first season of Telltale’s interactive take on The Walking Dead was received very well. People praised its skilled storytelling and its meaningful choices, and it made many a player cry. Though rough in content and themes, I gave it a high recommendation in my previous review for its well-written characters and its ability to make you really dive deeply into your moral beliefs and convictions to uncover some truths about yourself. It truly was a masterpiece.
Now, Telltale is continuing this story. To say exactly what is going on in this one would be full of incredibly unfortunate spoilers, so I’ll be simple and brief about it. In the first game, the player controlled Lee, a man who takes it upon himself to protect a young girl named Clementine. In this second season, the player is now controlling Clementine herself, and it focuses on her ability to survive as Lee taught her.
Now this is only episode 1 of five, meaning it’s only the first two hours of a bigger experience that will be unfolding over the course of the year. That said, it is still a pretty good indication of what potentially offensive content future episodes will have.
What Parents Need to Know
Being a game about zombies, The Walking Dead is fittingly violent. Various kinds of gore, from amputation to gunshot wounds to zombies biting into human flesh, are very common. The art style of the game keeps the violence from looking too realistic, but that certainly doesn’t eliminate the potential squeamishness.
The F-word and most lesser swear words are used multiple times throughout the game. Clementine occasionally chastises their use.
Nothing to speak of, really. One woman is implied to have had an affair.
This series is largely based on the player’s choices, meaning there are plenty of opportunities for the player to be as good or bad a person as they want. That said, they will also face the consequences, positive or negative, of their decisions, so it hardly glorifies the morally corrupt. If anything, it’s a morality test; an interactive story that forces you to reflect on yourself and make your own choices, and may teach you something about yourself in the process.
A Child’s Perspective:
Nope, nope, nope. Not letting a kid near this one.
Telltale is, thus far, continuing their tradition of excellence with this entry in their series. It has not yet reached the heights of season 1, but that is not to be expected as of the first episode. As it stands, this is a solid start to another season, and promises to provide many of the same themes and difficult moral situations as provided by its predecessor.
As with the previous season, my recommendation is double-sided. On one side, it is unmistakably for mature audiences, and if you or your child have issues with graphic violence or harsh language, you may want to stay away from this one. On the other side, however, this content is not without reason for being there; this is not a gore-fest, or a mindless slog through profanity-laden and blood-soaked action sequences, it’s a thoughtful and emotional story unfolding with your influence. The first season tested my moral fiber like nothing else I’ve ever done, and this season is promising to do the same. So be cautious about its content, but if you are mature enough to handle it, I must recommend this game rather strongly. Just play the first one before playing this one. You will not regret that decision.