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    dkirschner's The Walking Dead: Season One (PC)

    [January 20, 2015 10:57:56 AM]
    A and I played the DLC, 400 Days, last night. It took us about 2 hours and is made up of 6 character vignettes. Two of them were standouts; one kind of sucked, and the others were good. Tough to explore the characters and their situations given 20 minutes each. But I can't wait to see how this relates to Season 2!

    The game introduces a couple new mechanics, like holding A to drag a corpse or to jostle a pipe loose. Those were fun. There are some good scares, some moral moments, some story surprises. It's definitely worth shelling out $1 for when it goes on sale.

    After we beat it, I spent another hour trying to beat one of the characters in a game of rock, paper, scissors for an achievement. I kept losing, and then A looked online and found the NPC's pattern. We copied it a couple times and finally won. Why did I do that? To get the coveted 100% achievements for the game. It was the only one left! It feels good to 100% a game, but also shallow because none of the achievements were special (except winning RPS!). You get all the achievements just from playing the game (Finish Chapter 1, finish Chapter 2, etc.). That goes to show how linear the game really is.
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    [September 4, 2014 03:54:00 PM]
    Finished! I can't believe it took us 3 months to beat this. Altogether, we did it in 4 sittings. That's how often we play video games together, haha.

    Loved it. I'm officially a fan. I want the 400 Days DLC. I want Season 2. We accidentally watched a trailer for the Season 2 finale and got a little spoiler from an unanswered question in Episode 5 that we just played. It's probably really a big spoiler, but I say little because it's what I suspected, involving a certain character's undocumented death.

    I feel the devs were under time constraint and got a little sloppy at the end, as there were a few story points I didn't care for, or that were kind of like uuuh, really? There were also some late-game bugs. At the very end of Episode 4, the game quit accepting input from the controller during dialogue choices. This was for like the last 3 or 4 choices in the Episode, when Lee is talking to the guy on the walkie talkie and deciding whether to go in the sewers alone or who to bring with him after his zombie run-in. It's really serious dialogue and A was really pissed! We also had at least 3 instances in Episode 5 of getting dialogue options that we shouldn't have seen. For example, Crista is obviously pregnant, but our Lee didn't know that. All of a sudden he makes this off-the-cuff remark that she's eating for two, and she's not surprised he said it, like they had established her pregnancy was common knowledge...except they hadn't ever mentioned it. There were a few cases like that, sort of breaks the fantasy by mixing story branches. I don't recall any bugs in Episodes 1-3, so it was weird.

    Anyway, loved the way the Season ended. My guess is that the two on the horizon at the end are zombies. We shall see. When is Season 2 going on sale on Steam?!
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    [July 18, 2014 09:31:39 AM]
    My girlfriend and I have been playing this and we love it. We played Episodes 1 and 2 in one long sitting a couple weeks ago, and played Episode 3 last night (followed by a couple episodes of BSG because I knew I couldn't make it til 2am through another 3-hour episode of Walking Dead!)

    We think the dialogue and the story twists and turns are unbelievably gripping. I love all the characters. I don't mean that I like them all as people -- some suck -- but I love all of their complexity. Lee and Clem are adorable.

    Yeah so playing this game together, we are just on the edge of our seats the whole time. Whenever things seem calm, something happens, and nothing is ever what we think it is. There's this overwhelming sense of dread. For example, in Episode 3 last night, we investigated the mystery of the chalk and the missing supplies, and the whole time we're just talking about who we think did it. Then when Lee finds the paper bag in the drop spot, we were both like OH SHIT! BANDITS! And then the next scene, BAM, bandit attack, action time! And then we STILL don't know who did it, and then Lilly flips her shit and we are captivated by what she is saying, accusing Carley and Ben.

    An interesting thing this game does to you is that since you KNOW you are going to have to make meaningful choices, you plan ahead for outcomes. So as soon as there was this missing supply issue, we were discussing who might have done it and why, and then what we would do with the person if we caught them. Would we take them with us? Leave them? Kill them? And not only us, but what would the other characters do? Would Kenny leave them? Would Lilly kill them? And as Lee, what should Lee do? Given that Kenny likes our Lee and Lilly dislikes our Lee, depending on who took the supplies, what do we do considering our various relationships with other characters, as Lee?

    So when Lilly is accusing Carley and Ben of treating with the bandits outside the RV, she's escalating the situation, and we're both like, okay, what is she going to do? Because she's wavering back and forth between screaming at Ben and Carley and both of them together. I was thinking we'd tell Lilly to shut up and like lock her in the bathroom or something because she had no proof of anything and was getting really harmful to the group. I figured we'd have that option, or the option to support her accusation of Ben and/or Carley, and then we would probably leave whoever. But as usual, there's a twist, which I won't give away for anyone who hasn't played, and we were stunned sitting there on the couch, like...whoa. WHOA. Shit. Then when these unexpected things occur, you pick up the pieces and move on.

    After 3 episodes (well, in the middle of the 3rd), A got curious enough about our choices to look up what happens if you choose other options. I was thinking it would be more like Mass Effect, where the people you save or kill have perhaps seemingly small impacts on your story in the immediate, but turn out to really affect things later. Or I was thinking like Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls where there is a lot of branching. Like, we took Carley from the store in Macon and left Doug. Then the stolen supplies incident happens with Lilly. What would have happened if we took Doug? Does the same thing happen, just to a different character? What happens if you don't kill Lilly's dad in episode 2? Does she like you more, and Kenny dislike you more? Can you accuse Ben of stealing supplies and kill him or leave him? Are there a wealth of different scenes and situations if you make different choices?

    Well, it turns out that things don't branch like Heavy Rain and they don't seem to have such lasting effects like Mass Effect (not yet at least). Events will happen nonetheless, just with different characters. I don't mind this at all because the story is so great and there are so many different micro-interactions Lee engages in. It's not just about what happens, but about how everyone feels about it that matters.

    Playing off this knowledge though, it would be nice to see more detailed choice statistics at the end of chapters. Like last night I saw that most people let Lilly back in the RV. I was surprised at this, because for me it was crystal clear to leave her. But then again, in my game, I didn't like her and she didn't like Lee. She was always stirring trouble with Kenny (we liked each other) and becoming more and more paranoid. The statistics are just a small snapshot though. I'd like to be able to click this stat and see the other choices that may have influenced the outcome of this choice. So for example, I bet that players who were friendly with Lilly (didn't kill her dad, sided with her over Kenny most of the time, didn't want to leave the motel, etc) were much more likely to let her back on the RV. Players unfriendly with Lilly, like me, were much more likely to leave her. I would LOVE to see these other influential choices alongside the main episode choices. How cool would that be?

    I've never seen the show or read the comics, so this world is all quite new to me. Well, besides the fact that it takes place in Georgia. A has watched a couple seasons and read a bunch of the comics, so she's telling me sometimes what's from which medium and explained how the zombie virus or whatever it is works in this world. Neat info. Anyway, we freakin love this game. Can't wait to play more, but want to savor them. Also I will so be buying Season 2 when it's bundled, as well as Telltale's other episodic game, The Wolf Among Us. If it's the same quality as the Walking Dead, then I will be a happy survivor.
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    dkirschner's The Walking Dead: Season One (PC)

    Current Status: Finished playing

    GameLog started on: Tuesday 1 July, 2014

    GameLog closed on: Monday 19 January, 2015

    dkirschner's opinion and rating for this game

    Holy crap, this game is incredible.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

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