By MachoFantastico 2 Comments
Clementine is a young girl in a world which requires her to grow up sooner than she'd like, just to survive. From walking corpses to the fellow survivors who portray both the best and worst in humankind, the world of The Walking Dead remains as violent and unforgiving as ever. However she must face these dangers herself, face to face and that is at the heart of this second season of the award winning Telltale adventure game.
Taking place sometime after the events that concluded season one, All That Remains finds the player in control of Clementine, the young girl who so many of us fought to protect in the first season. Whilst she's certainly wiser and braver than she once was, there's still a degree of innocence to Clementine that makes her a noticeably different character to play. Lee had his past, his troubles yet Clementine is a girl whose innocence might possibly result in her death around every corner. It's an interesting story twist compared to Lee, but one that might possibly rub some players the wrong way. Don't get me wrong, playing as Clem is certainly one of the most interesting aspects to this second season, she maybe older but she's still a child and from a storytelling perspective, there's something captivating about experiencing this world from a child's view.
In many ways this first episode suffers from the usual issues that Telltale have faced with a new adventure series, in that the first episode can often feel flat as it attempts to set the scene for future episodes. That's the case for All That Remains because whilst there's some memorable moments it's clear this second season should not be judged on episode one alone. It's a reasonably short episode but one that certainly isn't without a few highlights, I won't go spoiling them though. Clementine's story certainly intrigues me and it's a real unknown where the story will go from here. Plus with your choices and decisions being imported from season one and 400 days, it's anyone's guess just how influential they will be in future episodes. But I feel the need to stress the point that episode one is simply setting the scene, those expecting revelations will most likely be disappointed with how season two kicks off.
The comic book artistic style of The Walking Dead is still as striking as ever and it's still great at giving the world a real atmosphere. Facial animations aren't great still, which is a shame because Clementine and cast sound as good as ever. Playing the PC version I came across no issues whatsoever, that goes for save importing to which is done at the very beginning, or if you don't have any save data from previous episodes the game will randomly choose choices for you. Controls are pretty much identical as are the way conversations take place, with that all too frightening timer returning requiring you to choose an answer in that allotted time. One small disappointment I noticed is the inability to turn off story-based notifications, these being the pop-up text informing you if a character will remember what you said and so forth. This is a feature I turned off in season one and it's a shame I couldn't seem to find a way to turn it off. Other than that, the PC version ran great.
It's always difficult to review an episodic game, it's because of this that I've decided to hold back from scoring it. Maybe once season two wraps up I can look at the season as a whole, but for now it's better I write my thoughts on each episodes when I can.
All That Remains is a solid starting point for season two, one that feels weak in spots but points to an open and unknown future for Clementine and the other survivors. It's this tease that will most likely keep players anticipated for future episodes, because once all is said and done this is still a great playing adventure game and one we'll most likely be discussing for a good many months to come.