Season 1 of The Walking Dead video game series was all about the protection and ensured safety of Clementine by Lee. In the second season with Clem a little more grown up and kind of on her own you are now in control of her and her actions. Basically what season 2 boils down to is how far you want to go with desensitizing this young girl. Will you try to hold on to every last bit of innocence she has left or let her morph into a harden survivor of the zombie apocalypse.
Time and time again I will say this of Telltale’s game series of late, their storytelling is masterful. They do a superb job at pulling in the player and making them care about the situations and characters. This does not change for The Walking Dead Season 2.
As many of you could have guessed the world has not gotten any better since the first season. Walkers are still plaguing the world with their presence and there are still plenty of evil people out in the world looking to prey on the weak. In comparison to the first season, the second season is not as touching. The ending of the first was very powerful in that regards, but with the second it also depends on how you play it out as you can have some powerfully emotional sequences.
Where the second season trumps the first one in regards to story is darkness. You are controlling a young girl being subjected to things no child should be seeing at that age, but with the circumstances of the world these experiences are giving her the ability to survive. Yes, you are in full control to many degree of how much of Clem’s innocence you take away but regardless it is still dark and dreary.
In this season you are in full control of Clem seeing everything from her perspective. Some people may have played this game with the mindset of still being Lee, her protector. I on the other hand played it as I was Clem. There were a plethora of choices in this game when it came to dialogue but within the action of the game much of the choices, regardless of what you made had the same outcome.
This time out I feel like the gameplay took a backseat to the story, which is fine in some regards but the interaction part did disappear a bit. In the first season you would walk around areas with Lee trying to figure out puzzles, in the second that element seemed to disappear. The amount of quick-time events seemed to have doubled.
Not much changed graphically in the second season. Though I can’t really see how it would change much. The first season was artistically designed to look like The Walking Dead comic and they did that flawlessly. In this one they did the same and again it works.
Sure there were some of the weird animations that to pop up again in this one. Like for instance characters walking a little awkwardly or hands passing through objects the character is picking up but all this was very rare so it’s easily forgiven.
Another part of the game Telltale did not miss a beat with (no pun intended) was the sound. The voice acting again was top notch. Casting Michael Madsen to voice Carver was a terrific choice. It complemented the character well and just gave me that feeling every time I heard him speak of wanting to punch the man in the face repeatedly (for good reasons).
I had one little issue were the lip sync was off for a hot minute which I’m not sure if that was an in game issue or just my pc being stupid. Beyond that one little issue (or nonissue) the sound design was executed near flawlessly.
How much time you get out of this game all depends on if you want to replay the story through multiple times to see the different outcomes. Just like in the past as I’ve said with these games my first play though is my story and I don’t venture back into it again to not blur my choices and actions in my mind when the next game comes along. I myself put 8 hours into completing this game.
As I mentioned early a lot of the choices you make in this game have the same outcome regardless of what you do (to some degree). This does not hold true for the ending however. To avoid spoiling anything I’m not going to go into full detail with this. From my count I believe there are 5 endings which then have some branching on their own, making for quite a bit of variation. Each of these endings leaves you in a completely different situation too which has me very intrigued how Telltale is going to handle this in Season 3 or if they might address it with a DLC in the near future.