Season Two concerns

CathalOHaraCathalOHara Moderator
edited February 2014 in The Walking Dead

A few concerns just popped into my head, this will probably end up being a very long-winded post. Anyway... let's see how it goes.

I'll just quickly throw it out, I really enjoyed "All That Remains" playing as Clementine was thrilling and her struggles against her enemies was spectacular. She's a brilliant lead protagonist for this Season and I can't wait to see where her character goes from this point onwards.

Anyway, here comes the concerns... I myself was pretty surprised at the time the Episode wasn't as well received by the fans or critics as I would have hoped/expected. Yes granted, there was legitimate cons. The new characters didn't get as well known as the ones from the first Season(which is to be expected since you only met them over half way through the episode). But I don't really agree with that one, I knew everyone's names before the Episode ended even. Which I myself was surprised about since I'm normally terrible with names. The timeskip was another one, although I have a feeling there's going to be a good reason to have one later on this season (Episode 3's banner gives me a good idea).
But the one that I'm a tinsy bit worried about is the creative process this series (and The Wolf Among Us thus far) are going through. Let me explain, the first four episodes of Season One had scenarios where you had areas to explore as Lee. Where you could even have optional conversations with characters and learn more about their past. You know, Adventure Game elements in them. The Everett's Drugstore in Macon is a prime example. You could learn Lilly's occupation (Airman) and Carley's story on how she was saved by Doug. Thing is, a majority of these conversations have always been optional. Them ones? I'm not too sure, I've never done a playthrough where I ignore any dialogue. But I'm pretty sure you guys know what I mean.

Since "No Time Left" Telltale have went for a much more cinematic style with their episodes. Having a very linear progression and thus, the episodes feel significantly shorter because of it (one of the criticisms All That Remains had) I LOVED being able to wind down and walk around a good bit, trying to start up the train and seeing everyone sitting down relaxing (or in Katjaa's case, keep her son from turning). It was one of my favorite things in the first Season. And let's not forget when Chuck joins in and plays the guitar. Simply put, there needs to be more Adventure game elements in the episodes to extend the lifespan and interest of replayability when you learn that you completely forgot to talk to that one person and bring up that subject and the like. It was one of my favorite things the first four episodes did. So please Telltale, vary the gameplay in the same way the first Season did. The train puzzle was a simple one that let us catch a breath after what happened to Carley/Doug. And same went for when you had to get Kenny out of the captain's seat to get the map. It all extended playtime and was enjoyable. Lately all we're doing is going there or using a different weapon against a hostile (in both The Wolf Among Us and Season Two). Being able to have optional conversations with people and learn more about them was the key factor of why several people liked (and hated) the cast from Season One, we learned a good bit of their backstory.

And one final thing, I fear that Telltale may want to bring Season Two to be nothing but tears and depression. Yes, it's the Walking Dead. Yes, you're playing as a poor girl who's had to go through so much. But in the end, there needs to be moments where we smile and laugh, to help lighten up the very, very dark world this is. Examples? Clementine's "Salt lick" from Episode 2 and Kenny's "Urban" line that actually happens literally minutes later. Don't get me wrong though, there was some of it. Omid's argument with Christa at the start was pretty funny. "We're not calling our baby Omid one of you is enough." Were things that made me laugh. Omid was great comic relief as well as a likeable character, it's a shame he got killed of so early. But there were the occasional unintentional funny moments too. Like this:

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Sorry for the long winded post guys, just wanted to post my concerns. I LOVE Telltale and I've been a fan of their works for over six years. The Walking Dead was a huge accomplishment for them, I just hope that Season Two can live up to the first Season. Because it has the power to. Playing as Clementine will make for a much more greater challenge and test your morals and what you think is the better thing to do, save this person? Or save yourself? Clementine is no longer a moral compass for you. Because you're Clementine and you can bend your morals a good bit more now (blackmailing Rebecca being the prime example). I'm really looking forward to it, and while I do have more concerns (Sean Vanaman and Jake's departure from Telltale with their incredible writing skills) I still have hope for a strong Season ahead.

And yes, I think Kenny's alive. I'm pretty sure Telltale have been paying attention to everyone screaming to have him back.

EDIT: Seems this post is going to go to the bottom pit of the forums now. It was a TL;DR afterall. Oh well, just wanted to state my opinion on the matter.

Comments

  • edited February 2014

    I agree, more or less, with most of what you wrote. But this thing stung my eye badly.

    "And yes, I think Kenny's alive. I'm pretty sure Telltale have been paying attention to everyone screaming to have him back."

    ...

    Hopefully they have backbone not to resort to fan service just because some vocal people are obsessed with a certain support character.

    I'm fine it's Kenny, I'm fine it it's Lilly, I'm fine if it's someone else entirely. Never ever it should be someone specific just because some fans want it.

    Whoever it is, I'm more interested on how they came to survive.

  • jesus christ, go play the first episode of season 1 and completely forget about the rest of the episodes, you'll feel exactly the same as you feel right now about episode 1 of season 2.

  • I was going to say that myself actually, about how I'd like to know how they had survived. But I felt like my post had gone a bit too long at that point. So I just cuted it off there.

    And I don't blame you for having an eye-sting on that last part. I did just throw it in there.

  • edited February 2014

    Good points made. I enjoyed All That Remains, but I hope the next episode isn't afraid to slow down a bit. It was fast-paced with Clementine lost and dealing with a group that didn't trust her, but when things ease up I'd like a chance to explore again.

    The lighter moments are what give the tragedies their impact. Give the characters a breather like we had at the Motor Inn or Dairy. Let people interact and have proper buildup for the harsher moments that will inevitably follow.

  • edited February 2014

    I agree that the game is trying too hard to go for a cinematic approach. The Walking Dead isn't about nonstop action, it is about interactions between characters and sadistically difficult choices. Those two things go hand in hand, because how can a choice be difficult if I don't care about anyone involved? I don't want the game to constantly try to top itself, I want characters to die in a realistic manner that fits in the story. Shock value doesn't work in your favor if it is contrived and lacks any buildup whatsoever.

    As for length, that was something that really pissed me off. I am very concerned with the length of the season as a whole, considering the recently, TWAU E2 was also very short. I agree that it can be attributed to the pacing of the episode, as there was no downtime whatsoever. If we were given some opportunity to speak with members of the group, it could have easily been expanded by at least 30 minutes. Not to mention that the stopping point was completely unnatural. It just seemed to end randomly, it felt very awkward.

    Also, another problem of mine:

    Clementine as a protagonist. We all love Clementine, but having the player make choices for Clementine diminishes her character. I feel like I am Clementine, which is good from a gameplay standpoint, but bad from a narrative standpoint. I never find myself wondering how Clementine would make a decision or respond to a piece of dialogue, I just make the choice based entirely off of my personality. Basically, I am forcing my personality upon her character, and my personality largely differs from both S1/S2 Clementine. This is not to say that I don't enjoy playing as Clementine, I just don't feel the same affection toward her that I did in season 1.

    Sean and Jake leaving is... concerning, to say the least.

  • Yeah, I've always noticed people have said these points when Clementine was the main protagonist of Season Two. But to be honest, I think it was planned from the very beginning for her to be the lead of the second Season. The game just feels like it's her story from the get-go for me. I understand what you mean. But I feel like when I make her say/do things that made her Season One self sound out of character it was character growth for her in my book. It was like as if you were seeing her grow up and you were proud of her.

    Still though, from a gameplay standpoint playing as a character like her will prove to be a great challenge in future episodes. It's a risky move making a child the main protagonist. Even if it's a character we know and love.

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