20th Sep2019

‘The Walking Dead: The Telltale Definitive Series’ Review (PS4)

by Chris Cummings


I’ve been a fan of the Telltale The Walking Dead series right from the very beginning. In fact, I was a big Telltale fan. I loved many of their titles, from The Wolf Among Us to Borderlands to their Game of Thrones title, but The Walking Dead was their best work, bringing a brand new original story into the world that we are familiar with from the comics and the television show. It was certainly the greatest achievement of the studio, and this release, The Definitive Series, collects all four season’s, the 400 Days DLC and the Michonne mini-series into one splendid tidy release. Lovely-jubbly.

It’s great to play this game in its entirety, especially if you have never played these games, or maybe even, like me, if you haven’t replayed them in a while (and I hadn’t got around to Season 4). The story of Clementine as she gets older and traverses the dangers, the people, the wonder and the weirdness of the zombie wasteland she calls her new home is wonderful, and features some shocking moments and genuinely moving ones. It’s a beautifully written story, and as you make these heart-pounding decisions as the timer ticks down, it creates this feeling of really changing the outcome of the game with the choices you make. It works really well.

It was Season 1 of The Walking Dead Telltale that got me interested in the studio to begin with, and I’ve played most of their titles since. I loved going all the way back to that first season, playing as Lee, and making these serious decisions while trying to protect this little girl named Clem that you stumbled across while escaping a horde of walkers. It’s an origin, yes, but also much more. The chapters creep by with some genuinely interesting and addictive plot points, characters and gameplay moments, and you can’t help but continue on. Season two continues along the same route, but with you taking control of Clementine and encounter brand new people, challenges and locations. I loved this season too, and going back to replay is was a blast. Season three, The New Frontier, see’s you pick up the story as Javier, a young guy who is trying to get his captured family back. He then meets Clementine during the season, another strong and exciting instalment into the universe that Telltale crafted here. The Michonne and 400 Days additions are nice, and play well. I thought the Michonne one especially, which lasts for three chapters, was a fun backstory to a great character. It’s well worth playing if you haven’t. The final season, which began being released in 2018, is an exceptional end to a wonderful story. This was my first time with the final season, and I thought it was a worthy, exciting, moving and entertaining end to the whole thing.

There’s so much to like about these games that it’s difficult to point out the issues, but there are a few. The games do glitch once in a while, and I had issues with the wrong sound playing at times, or the game freezing up, this has happened since I first started playing the Telltale games, so it seems like something that may have been an issue for a while. The mechanics usually work really nicely, but there are times when it isn’t as responsive as it needs to be, causing you to get your face eaten off while you grit your teeth, ready to play the same part again because… well… you be dead! Still, the failures and flaws are minimal, and the positive things are easy to find around every corner and with every push of a button. It’s just quality storytelling, addictive gameplay and an overall top notch production.

Really, if you like The Walking Dead, if you like gaming but want a casual and chilled-out experience, if you like Telltale Games generally, or if you want something different from shooters, racers and sports titles, then I recommend this for sure. It’s got an excellent price-point for a complete definitive edition, and whether you’ve played them or not, these are games worth playing, or playing again. I had a lot of fun with this release and it only reminded me of just how much fun these titles were. The very well written script and story, the impassioned voice-work, the comic-book style shaded graphics and the easy-going but responsive gameplay all go into creating a slick and terrifically funny, sad, cool and creepy experience.

***** 5/5

The Walking Dead: The Telltale Definitive Series is out now on PS4 and Xbox One.


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