Monday, September 03, 2012

Tech: The Walking Dead

"The Walking Dead" is an episodic adventure game based on Robert Kirkman's comic series of the same name:



You star as Lee Everett, a man with a murky past. When the game starts, you're in handcuffs in the back of a police car, being taken to prison. The zombie apocalypse soon strikes, and you find yourself taking care of a little girl named Clementine. It's this unlikely relationship - the convict and the kid - that anchors the story through 5 episodes (3 released, 2 upcoming) of grisly murders, cannibalism, and heated arguments.

The actual gameplay is similar to Telltale Games' other titles - basically a point-and-click adventure game a la 1990s-era LucasArts. There's action, usually in the form of frantic quick time events, but this isn't a shoot-'em-up; you'll spend more time talking to other characters and solving (easy) puzzles than killing zombies. Unlike most adventure games, there's some replayability, too, since the choices you make impact whether people live or die (or at least how some plot point happens). You can play Lee as a take-no-prisoners survivor, a kindly father figure, or something in between.

I think Telltale Games has done a good job of translating the bleak atmosphere and occasional depravity of Robert Kirkman's comic series to a game format. If you're a fan of the comics, you'll probably like this more than the occasionally-plodding AMC TV series. Even if you're not, this game will give you a taste of what it's like to live in an atavistic zombie wasteland.

Rating: 80/100 (+5 if you're a fan of TWD comic)

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