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Posted by ripelivejam

call me a softy, but i saved ben, mostly cause he reminded me of me (feeling sometimes that i'm a colossal failure, goofup, and even tho i can mess things up bad i'm at least trying to do what's right)

Posted by Jack_Lafayette

I struggled with it, but didn't take Clementine. What was I going to do, lead her through an infested city to a haven for thuggish child-killers? The house was more defensible anyway, and I trusted her to handle that gun if she needed to.

When Kenny brought it to a vote, I did end up voting to leave Ben in the city as he had become a clear liability. My Lee, though, doesn't let people die if they still have a shot at survival. Dropping him wasn't an option, and if anything it sent a message that he couldn't just keep giving up and letting others suffer for it. Turned out in my favor when I needed all the help I could get to search for Clem.

Posted by Incapability

When I had the choice to just stick it to Ben, I was all good and riled up. I'd had enough of being nice and helpful, Ben had fucked shit up for the whole group big time, I'd voted him out, and I wasn't in the mood to have him around to fuck shit up even more.

So when I finally had the chance to let him fall, I clicked away gleefully. That's right Ben, you piece of shit, enjoy the consequences of your shitty ac-- - that was pretty much the exact moment I realized the game had, once again, figured me out.

The instant he hit the ground, bleeding, screaming and being eaten by zombies, I knew very well I was totally capable of saving him, and I was just being a vengeful dick. Vengeful because his actions caused Lilly to shoot Carley, because it made me leave Lilly to be fucked up in some cold roadside ditch, because it led to Katjaa and Duck getting their brains blown out. Every time I felt I finally took a stand, and stuck by my guns in that game, I immediately felt like I was also being a total dick.

Which is awesome. I mean, part of me knew full well that if I hadn't left Lilly behind, she'd find some other way to screw me over, and I imagine that taking Ben with me would have some sort of negative effect later.

The most soul-crushing part, though, is that I've tried my damn best to stick by Kenny when I thought it was appropriate, but that stubborn son of a bitch just won't let that thing go where I didn't prioritize his dipshit son.

Fantastic series so far, excited to try the last episode.

Posted by Valames

Man, I love these things. A great addition to the site, Patrick. I would love to see more articles like this becoming a regular addition to Giant Bomb. To hear people talk about choices in games like Mass Effect or Dragon Age would be interesting.

Posted by eccentrix

"I think most people assumed that Kenny and Christa and Omid are basically good people that are on your side, and showing them the bite wouldn’t necessarily have a negative repercussion. Hiding it might because they know, in the world of the Walking Dead, it’s going to come back soon or later, and you may as well be honest about it now. If there was a character like Larry still in the group, who you can imagine might make an argument to cast you out for being bitten, people might have been more afraid to show it."

Kenny was that character for me. He hated me most of the time, but I wouldn't hide a bite from the group because of him.

Posted by downandmean

@Asmo917: I'm with you man, same here.

Posted by Hayamo

I'm a terrible person and let Ben fall... I felt so bad afterwards, but I stuck to my guns and let it happen.

Edited by Joby

Sad that an accomplished writer like Whitta would use a word like [idiot] and simultaneously proud of our evolution as a species that editors chose to remove it for him.

Posted by FoolishChaos

Put me in with the crowd who initially chose to hide the bite, and then showed the group when they approached. I think it was a good thing, because it reflected very well what I wanted to do at those moments. Initially I was very much in panic mode, and decided to hide it because I was scared. When they approached and started talking I immediately started to regret it and wanted to come clean. I think this is very human. To lie when confronted suddenly, but then come clean after you are given a chance to clear your head.

In a game where you want the choices to come when the players aren't too clear on the right decision, I can understand why this can be viewed as a failure, but this isn't a choice that cant be logically rectified/changed later. If I wasn't given the chance to spill the beans on the bite later on, I would be more frustrated that the game wasn't giving me the option. Which is not something I've come across in the game yet. Sometimes you play a game and think "why can't I just say this really obvious thing?". The walking dead is not that game, and its why I'm enjoying it so much.

@Jimi said:

I don't understand why people chose to save Ben. Like yeah ok great you saved a guy who almost got the whole group murdered multiple times and was the direct cause of at least 3 character deaths all so he can not board the hypothetical boat. Great decision.

For me I almost let him go, right after voting that he not get on the boat. But then I reflected on how I felt about the community we were taught to hate the whole episode. A group of survivors who would sooner kill the weak rather than let them slow them down. It was a little too bothered about how hypocritical I would be if I let Ben go just because he was a bit weak, a bit of an idiot.

Posted by Hizang

Great interview, now that I rethink the dead boy, I wish I would have made Kenny deal with it. I chose to do it myself, only because I thought I was doing the best thing for Kenny,

Posted by ashogo

@Yodasdarkside said:

I'll be glad when I'm done episode 5, can delete the game from my hard drive and hopefully the group circle-jerk that is the Giant Bomb coverage of this game, something you hardly ever find here, will be over.

I'm not getting your point here. Because a lot of people really love this game that you don't as much, their praises are somehow unworthy? Giant Bomb circle jerk, really?

Posted by tourgen

episode 4 was terrible. Molly was one dimension and uninteresting, dropping from the sky like batman and never making mistakes or showing any internal conflict with her decisions. The Crawford stuff was uninteresting and predictable while being preachy and oh-so-tidy and morally convenient at the same time.

and just the mechanics - someone doesn't know how a hydraulic lift works. Seriously, cutting a pressurized hydraulic line? Go try that writers. Please. OK maybe some of you are dumb enough to try, so just go to youtube and search for "hydraulic injection accident" or "hydraulic line safety".

and the typical 120lb person catching a 200lb person by the wrist and pulling them up. WOW. so god damned dumb. that kind of ignorance of how the world actually works really pulls me at of the moment and the story.

Posted by JakeBalsagna

Well I guess it's time to catch up!

Posted by Jimi

I don't understand why people chose to save Ben. Like yeah ok great you saved a guy who almost got the whole group murdered multiple times and was the direct cause of at least 3 character deaths all so he can not board the hypothetical boat. Great decision.

I guessed Lee was going to be bitten pretty early on. Now it just remains to be seen if they want to crush everyone's soul by killing Clementine.

Posted by zitosilva

There's one thing I particularly loved in episode 4, that can only be seen if you take Clementine with you and it doesn't involve a choice. When you take her, she stays put in a classroom, and if you look around you'll see Lee describe that there's a shelf with paper and some crayons.

This little description reminded me how, not long ago (in episode 2, I believe), Clem was just a little child, complaining how bored she was, and mentioning that drawing is the only thing she could do. When I was reminded of that, it was shocking to see how her character had naturally grown and changed after the events have witnessed. She's no longer the child you rescued. She's part of the group, and she desperatly wants to help everyone else as best as she can. This was a great moment.

Posted by cikame

Lee getting bitten was just another very bad event in a series bursting at the seams with very bad events, i've become numb to it now and i'm finding it hard to care about a universe where good things can't happen.

Posted by Lukeweizer

Did anyone else NOT bring Clem to gather supplies and was left to save Molly but NOT able to shoot the zombie? I reloaded the sequence about 3 times and directly shot the zombie (or at least I thought) twice, but it didn't trigger and I ended up "leaving her behind". Are you even able to shoot the zombie attacking her?

Posted by Raven10

Two things. One, I killed Ben. He got Carly shot and nearly got Clem killed. Kenny had said we could not fit everyone on the boat and I wouldn't have wanted Ben on there in the first place, so I let him drop. Two, if Clementine dies in the fifth episode I'm going to be bawling for hours. I can accept Lee dying. I assumed it was going to happen since the beginning so I readied myself for it. But if Clem dies I'll be devastated.

Posted by Yodasdarkside

Couple of things.

I am enjoying the game, much more than I thought I would. I was looking forward to it a great deal, mainly because I like the show, and the hype was generally good. However, I have failed to enjoy Telltale games as a whole. Sam and Max was the biggest let-down of my gaming experiences. After hearing for ages about how funny they were, how clever, how cool - I was ready to forgive ancient game mechanics and have a good time.

It never materialised. The dialogue failed to raise even a smile, and the gameplay was as mildewed and creaky as I had feared. Clunky movement, unclear progress, and a really tired, forced script. I was bummed. When I got Jurassic Park free with PS Plus, I decided to give it a go, as I love the movies. Guess what? In no way does that game deserve the scathing criticism it got, particularly from Giantbomb staff, who uncharacteristically savaged it. It captures the atmosphere of the movies perfectly, the dinosaur animation is brilliant, and it told a decent, Hollywood-action style story.

So I gave Walking Dead a go as well, but the demo was a disappointment and gave me no motivation to buy the game at all, I have to say mainly because I find that giant cross-hair incredibly intrusive, and breaks the illusion at all times. (I was also annoyed that you can't invert it, but got used to that). If I hadn't gotten the first two episodes free (again with Plus), I would not be playing it now, and it 's not the epic story driving me along. Sadly, it's 'easy platinum'. It's good, but facile. I agree it has obviously taken the scriptwriters an enormously long task to accommodate every player choice, but the direct thread of the narrative is as linear as FF12; your choices are just decoration.

I'll be glad when I'm done episode 5, can delete the game from my hard drive and hopefully the group circle-jerk that is the Giant Bomb coverage of this game, something you hardly ever find here, will be over.

Posted by Zeik

@Kevin_Cogneto said:

And regardless of genre, all those are all nice little games, but none were as significant an achievement as Walking Dead is. They're not even in the same ballpark.

This is where I start to think people are overpraising The Walking Dead. I wouldn't argue that it's their best work yet, but I don't feel it's that much better than some of their other releases. This game is simply the culmination of everything they've done until now, and while I've really enjoyed it, it's not magic in bottle.

Edited by Kevin_Cogneto

@Innovacious said:

After Jurassic Park, few could have predicted Telltale Games would have come up swinging as hard as it did with The Walking Dead

I guess you never played anything else Telltale did? 3 Seasons of Sam & Max, Strongbad, 2 Puzzle Agent games, Tales of Monkey Island, Hector, Back to the Future and Poker Night, just to name a few off the top of my head. They had bad games before Jurassic Park too but there was enough good there to not lose hope.

Sure, but all of those are very traditional adventure games (well except Poker Night, which is just poker with jokes), and Telltale had absolutely zero track record when it came to pushing beyond the boundaries of that very limited box they'd always worked within. And regardless of genre, all those are all nice little games, but none were as significant an achievement as Walking Dead is. They're not even in the same ballpark.

Posted by KlUMZeE

I've loved this series so much! Brilliant storytelling! I'm dying to play episode 5, I really hope it's ready soon.

Posted by Mumrik

@S1XTYN1N3 said:

Woah. This is the longest article ever written about any game on this site. Still not sure I can be bothered to try it.

Well, if you read this, you don't really have to.

Posted by Xpgamer7

I really loved the whole mystery of the town itself, but the choices never felt like they had the power they needed to. Still the only point I really disliked was the scene where you talk to Clementine about the boat plan. Nothing had shown me it was a good idea, but every choice indicated that your character felt that way. It was the only time I felt like I had truly no control not because it was too sudden or a situation that I couldn't control but because of the game. Otherwise there was also the scene where you're manically looking for Clementine while Kenny is drinking and Ben is being a jerk to you despite the increasingly manic scene. I know it was supposed to drive you away from Ben but it didn't feel like him. It felt close, but not him. It was still a good episode, but the past episodes felt like they had much more power behind their choices and didn't really betray the characters or bottleneck you into interpretations like they do here. Again these are small instances, but it's a game that relies on a continuous stream of small influences.

Posted by JoeyRavn

I finished it a couple hours ago. After hearing so much about this episode on the Bombcast, I must admit I approached it with some second thoughts about it. But, man. It was the best one yet, easily. I don't think I've been so involved with the characters of a video game in a very long time. And that ending... wasn't expecting it, at all.

Posted by BigSteve1983

@Klei said:

Telltale wouldn't have the balls to allow Clementine to get killed. That's for sure.

I don't know this is the walking dead IP we're talking about. If anyone has read the comics and even seen the show, it's a series where well bad shit happens.

I think there will be an option to see Clem probably die, however you have to have completely balls up the whole play through via the five episodes.

And regarding Ben, I let the drop. He screwed up so much it was a case of "First chance to kill him I'll take it".

Posted by HubrisRanger

Fun fact: You can let Ben die without even having to worry about the whole "drop him or not" issue.

Additional fun fact: Until I read this article, I didn't even know about the "drop him or not" issue. Sorry Ben, but one fuck up too many and you're zombie bait.

Posted by Spiritof

I'm gonna miss these articles after Ep. 5 is out in the wild, almost as much as I'm gonna miss Lee.

Posted by Ravenlight

These interviews are great. I love reading about why the people designed the games made the decisions they did in development.

Posted by KirePDX

@SonicBoyster: I absolutely agree that it's the weakest of the episodes so far (and hopefully ever); but it still had some good moments. I think it was in the Tested.com OctoberKast when the IdleThumbs crew was on, which includes Jake Rodkin and Sean Vanamen, that Whitta acknowledged that he kept on writing the script as a movie and forgot about the player interactivity.

I think that pops up in a few spots, like how they structured the whole setup with that doctor zombie and somehow completely skipped the part of how Lee gets back into the school. They clearly wanted to tell the story about that doctor, and probably wrote themselves into a corner.

All that said, it's still a pretty good story; and I'm looking forward to the finale.

I'm with the general group that says Lee has to die, and I think that Clementine kills him. My biggest question is:

  1. Do we play as Clementine to kill Lee?
Edited by Max_Cherry

I figured out that Lee was going to get bitten as soon as I started playing the game for four reasons: 1. He's a condemned man. 2. It's what I would do if I was the writer. 3. The last episode is called "No Time Left"! C'mon! 4. I found Lee reminiscent of The main Character in "Night of the living dead", and he died in the end. For me the only question was whether he get's bit at the end of episode 4 or the beginning of episode 5. That conspicuous cardboard box made it clear. And yes, Lee will die in the end. It's the best way to end it.

Posted by Asmo917

@dagonhydra: My thoughts exactly on Ben. He was a fuck-up, he'd put the group at risk, and showed cowardice in defending Clem. I had a brief exchange with Mr. Whitta on twitter when I was about halfway through Episode 4 saying I hoped he let me kill Ben or have him killed in a truly horrible way. He was either appalled or pretended to be - probably the later.

Bravo, Gary. Bra-fucking-vo.

Posted by Asmo917

@tehWabbit: I came clean, and everyone who survived has joined Team Clementine. Now, if you'll excise me, I have to go shoot myself in the head for using the phrase "Team Clementine."

Posted by Gizmo

28th November is the release date.

Posted by Innovacious

After Jurassic Park, few could have predicted Telltale Games would have come up swinging as hard as it did with The Walking Dead

I guess you never played anything else Telltale did? 3 Seasons of Sam & Max, Strongbad, 2 Puzzle Agent games, Tales of Monkey Island, Hector, Back to the Future and Poker Night, just to name a few off the top of my head. They had bad games before Jurassic Park too but there was enough good there to not lose hope.

Posted by teh_destroyer

I hope when its all said and done you guys will sit in the office and play through the 5 episode via live stream, that would be kinda rad.

Edited by Gildermershina

The boy in the attic, that was really hard for me to pull the trigger on. I knew I didn't want Kenny to do it, and I knew it had to be done, but when it came to actually doing it, fuck...

The stuff with Ben, I don't care if Ben is a complete fuck-up (he's kind of indirectly responsible for most of the main character deaths from ep3 on), I'm not dropping a kid down a hole to get eaten by zombies. He needs to live with the mistakes he made, and learn to survive, or at the very least die trying. He was asking for the easier way out. I hope Lee saving him makes him realise no matter what he's done, he can redeem himself.

Or he could fuck up again and get Clem hurt. And it would be the last thing he ever did.

Posted by SonicBoyster

I love these articles but episode 4 felt incredibly weak to me, no matter how you try to talk around the numbers (75/25 isn't telling the whole story! The decision is harder than we can prove!). Ben telling you there's no time, but if you choose to save him magically now there is time, leaving through a door you can't return through in the high school at one point only to return through that door in a cutscene, a shoot sequence in the beginning that doesn't allow you to actually shoot all of the zombies, intentionally misleading you about the situation so that Chuck can save the day, a scene with Vernon where you are forced to take the gun out of the man's hand or get shot trying to be peaceful. What a crock of shit decision that was. How about Clementine magically showing up everywhere? The forced 'emotional' sequence with the zombie boy. Meh. Meh!! This episode nearly killed the magic for me and I was totally wrapped up for the first three. I'll dismiss this as a filler episode and move forward. They can't all be winners.

Posted by DJJoeJoe

@probablytuna said:

The only thing I didn't like about the end of Episode 4 was when I asked Kenny if he's got my back and at first he was all sympathetic but the next line completely flipped and was basically "you didn't have my back for a few times before so fuck you you're on your own". It always sticks out to me when there's this complete shift in the tone of their voice in video game characters that takes me out of the experience. SO LOOKING FORWARD TO THE END.

Yea, and the ONE time I didn't have his 'back' was more than completely logical. I forget the exact situation but I'm always doing the 'best' thing at any one time and I felt totally justified and Kenny in that moment was getting too irrational at that time, I think just before his big lose? I forget. I don't think 'fuck kenny' for saying that, I think 'why is the game not handling this shift more smoothly.. cause it's almost robotic'. Whatever... Video Games you guys... fuckin' video games.

I've already actually teared up more than a handful of times during this game, I'll take things as they lay.

Posted by probablytuna

The only thing I didn't like about the end of Episode 4 was when I asked Kenny if he's got my back and at first he was all sympathetic but the next line completely flipped and was basically "you didn't have my back for a few times before so fuck you you're on your own". It always sticks out to me when there's this complete shift in the tone of their voice in video game characters that takes me out of the experience. SO LOOKING FORWARD TO THE END.

Edited by Bourbon_Warrior

@Klei said:

Telltale wouldn't have the balls to allow Clementine to get killed. That's for sure.

.....This is a series that a mans kid turned into a Zombie had you shoot him in the head before he had fully turned then had his mother shoot her self in the head, don't underestimate Telltale.

Also I killed Ben, maybe it was because I had played episode 3 the night before and remembered everything from it. Ben was dealing with the bandits that lead to the confrontation that got Duck bitten, he wouldn't fess up which made Lilly lose her marbles and shoot Carly which made me leave her on the side of the road, Duck turned infected which made me have to shoot him which made Katja shoot herself. I find it funny that Gary thought they had to give people reasons to get rid of Ben considered Episode 3 was pretty much that reason in a nutshell, then in Episode 4 he cowered away from zombies that almost got Clementine killed, removed the axe in the school that got Brenda bitten and Molly killed (I think). I don't see how any sane person could let him live and I hope you get punished for it in Episode 5 by Ben getting someone else in your party killed by his stupidity.

Posted by Zeik

@Dezztroy:

I'm not sure why you're comparing it to games that having physical releases. How many non-episodic games have a development cycle that are anything like Telltale's adventure games? Unlike physical releases, they're not done working on the game when the first episode is out. We'd be waiting a hell of a lot longer if they also had to send them out for manufacturing.

Posted by EpicVandal

I hated Duck and Kenny... Episode 3 was nice for me and made me laugh... i think that defines me as a terrible person. I shot Duck not to save Kenny the trouble but because I wanted the pleasure of doing it myself... looking back at it now though it would have been more traumatic to foce Kenny to do it. I found Episodes 2 and 4 to be the best ones for me.

Posted by cthomer5000

@Dezztroy said:

If only they would actually release their digital product which has no physical distribution whatsoever in a timely manner.

I genuinely feel the wait between episodes has enhanced my love for this game. I'm practically fist-pumping on release day because i'm anticipating it so much. If you played the whole game (all 5 eps) in one weekend, i don't think it would have nearly the impact it has when you're playing it over the course of 6 months.

It's nice to have an 'event' game like this to break up my regular gameplay.

Posted by Jack_Daniels

Faces of Death... wow thats a blast from the past. I remember that from like 10th grade. Crazy Crazy shit.

Posted by Foxillusion

The bite reveal has got to be one of the most shocking moments in games, for me. I couldn't believe it.

Posted by Dezztroy

If only they would actually release their digital product which has no physical distribution whatsoever in a timely manner.

Edited by Laiv162560asse

This is the only canon playthrough.

Posted by Zeik

I swear, Whitta practically stole that last paragraph from me. It was almost word for word what I said to someone awhile back when they were complaining about how the games don't give you complete control. Nice to know I'm on the same page as the writers.

Posted by Special_K

I was surprised at how lopsided that bite reveal was. I'm not sure how revealing the bite does anything to help save Clementine, and that was my ultimate concern. It seemed like it would only open up the opportunity for the group to abandon me. My logic is apparently flawed because now it's just me and Ben.

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