I've thoroughly enjoyed The Walking Dead, so far. I've felt it had a good story "for a video game" and was easily more enjoyable than the television show, which stumbled quickly and turned into adult DeGrassi High and even the comic, which I think even fans would have to candidly admit is poorly written. However, I never felt it was one of those stories that was so unique it just had to be experienced in your life time.
The fourth episode really started to take off at the mid-way point and by the end, I found myself quite sad at the point where we were preparing to take the boat the next morning and Clem asked about her parents. I was surprised at how much her reaction to my honesty kind of stung. But what followed shortly after was even worse.
Kenny didn't have my back.
See, my choices have always been made with consideration toward what the right thing to do, as a human being, is. Don't punish people out of anger. Save lives at all cost. Even if it makes times hard. That meant not always siding with Kenny (but often still siding with him). Trying to keep the peace. It meant not killing Ben just to satisfy Kenny's anger. But I saved Duck. I put Duck down, when Kenny couldn't do it. I put the kid in the attic down when Kenny couldn't do it. I made sure Kenny's son had food to eat. I always felt I made humanitarian and fair choices that Kenny would ultimately respect.
In the end, he turned his back on me when I needed him most. And when a little girl's life is in danger, I have a seriously hard fucking time imagining Kenny would back down from that responsibility no matter what. Especially now that he essentially has nothing to live for otherwise. I feel like the game mechanic was simply designed so that anything short of kissing Kenny's ass and doing a lot of unethical things in the process out of some misguided sense of loyalty would penalize me. I feel like I've been carefly balancing my decisions for the last ten hours in such a way that I always had my friend, Kenny, in mind when making them and only going against him when absolutely necessary and either taking his side or being neutral (like not leaving the girl at the side of the road after the murder) far more often than going against him. In the end, it was a lot of wasted effort, apparently.
So, knowing Whitta was responsible as "writer" for this episode, I actually found myself shouting "FUCK YOU, WHITTA" three times. Those two, above, and then the third when the bite happens.
Unless they really fumble the final episode, I'm pretty confident I'd put $25 down on the next season of episodes (new characters, new story, same world, etc) right now. Especially if they promised it would really be monthly and not semi-randomly. It's impressive how much this story can move the player. Especially when we all have a pretty good idea of the mechanics behind the game and how the flow-chart of "aaaaand bring everyone back to a fairly fixed point in the pre-determined story" parts that should otherwise feel like it has taken the authorship of the story back away from the player. Somehow, it all just works. And each time I've finished the two to four hour chunks, I'm ready for the next.