|System: Xbox 360, PS3, PC*|
|Dev: Telltale Games|
|Pub: Telltale Games|
|Release: March 4, 2014|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Intense Violence, Blood and Gore, Strong Language|
Once again, your enjoyment of Episode 2 very much hinges on your completion of Season 1. Unfortunately, I was one of the gamers who didn’t have their Season 1 playthrough import correctly, and so I noticed a couple of unfortunate hitches in the plot. You meet some characters from Season 1 and even from 400 Days, the short story compilation DLC, but if your file doesn’t import right they will mention things that never even happened. In addition, you also get some great dialogue choices based on your actions in Season 1, and not having access to that as you play through some of these heart wrenching scenes is disappointing. Honestly, at this point I’d suggest literally going back and playing Season 1 all over again if your file didn’t import correctly. It’s worth it. It will take 20 some odd hours to do so but it’s still worth it!
Let me tell you, the writing in this episode is just phenomenal. Meeting up with old faces from Season 1 had me crying and screaming Holy Shit at my monitor at the same time. The introduction of 400 Days characters make you wary and paranoid considering you know what happened in their backstory. The game constantly puts you in situations where you have to choose between multiple people that you trust. It even has a realistic and frankly heartbreaking portrayal of a gay couple. (SPOILERS!)Though it also plays fast and loose with their lives and I’m not sure how I feel about that, especially considering no one else really dies in this episode. (END SPOILERS!)
As always the presentation of this episode is just top notch. The user interface has been updated a tiny bit, and now feels like it is at home in the world of The Walking Dead. The graphics are still outstanding and the facial animations are superb, easily showing tiny changes in emotion from Clem’s distrust of strangers to the pained recollection of a horrible past by our guest character from Season 1 while still trying to put on a strong face for everyone else. The voice acting is still top notch, and even Clem has started to feel harder and more emotionless rather than innocent and scared. It’s frankly some of the best graphics and audio I’ve seen in the whole Walking Dead franchise yet.
A lot of people complained that Episode 1 didn’t stand alone as its own story, and Episode 2 still doesn’t But frankly, it doesn’t matter. There are still unanswered questions, cliffhanger endings, and lack of any real resolution to any character’s conflicts, but it’s still a phenomenal story. Very much unlike Season 1, which had five episodes each sort of telling a micro story about a band of survivors, Season 2 is very much a continuous narrative, and that’s what makes it great! There’s no reason to skip The Walking Dead: Season 2: Episode 2: A House Divided. Heck, there’s more reason to go back and purchase Season 1, and play it start to finish, just so that Season 2, has its full effect.
Angelo M. D’Argenio
Date: March 4, 2014