Zombies may shamble, but the Walking Dead game sprints ahead

Zombies may shamble, but the Walking Dead game sprints ahead

William Voorhees, Staff Reporter

What could be more terrifying than when the population of almost an entire state has either been eaten or turned into zombies?  How about being one of the few survivors among these hordes of undead monstrosities?

The Walking Dead: The Game is a point-and-click adventure game developed and published by Telltale Games, who are also known for the Sam and Max series and Back to the Future: The Game.

In The Walking Dead you assume the role of Lee Everett, a former professor of history who is arrested for murdering a state congressman when he is discovered to be sleeping with Lee’s wife.  While Lee is being taken to prison, the squad car he is in runs off the road after hitting a zombie (known as walkers in this game).Lee then has to free himself from the car, his handcuffs, and escape to safety.  After climbing over a fence, he finds a little girl named Clementine, who is hiding in her tree house to evade the walkers.  This is where Lee’s journey truly begins.

The game play in The Walking Dead is fairly simple.  It is mostly based around a dialogue system reminiscent of Mass Effect.  Depending on what you say, characters will react differently to you and may or may not trust you later in the game.  Lee’s personality is molded by the player, who can make him anything from a cold hearted jerk to a virtual mute.  This control will give you an emotional attachment to Lee, as most of the time he will be saying what you would say in the same situation.

As mentioned before, depending on what you say to different characters, they will have different opinions of you.  These relationships between the survivors are the most important aspect of the game.   Sometimes, you will be forced to take a side in an argument between two of your companions.  The person you side with will give you their respect and trust, while the person you go against will lose some faith in you.  These decisions can influence whether or not certain characters will help you later in the game.

When not in a conversation with one of your peers, the game follows the standard point-and-click formula.  You walk around various areas searching for items or actions to perform to continue on to the next area.  Sometimes finding items can be a little bit tricky due to some of them being slightly off screen/out of frame.

There are also a few shooting segments in the game that require you to kill all the walkers in your immediate area. Like any first-person-shooter game, you have to aim with the scope/iron sights of the gun you currently have. These segments may look fine, but they feel slightly off. Instead of feeling like an FPS game, these portions really just feel like a first-person point-and-click game where the pointing and clicking involves a gun.  It’s not too big of an issue though, as there are only three or four of them throughout the entire game.

The Walking Dead didn’t really have many problems.  The only technical issue that happened was a camera glitch in episode four that could be fixed by restarting the game.  My only other problem was that most of the time, in the long run, the game cancels out any choices you make by causing them to be irrelevant within the story.

All in all, The Walking Dead: The Game is a masterpiece.  While the game might have a technical hiccup at one point and some game play that can questionable, the powerful narrative makes up for it and then some.  It takes you on an emotional joyride that you won’t want to get off of until the end.  There is almost nothing wrong with it in any regard.  It is arguably the most well written video game of this generation or at least one of the best games of 2012.  Buying and then playing The Walking Dead should be the next two things you do after reading this review.