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Limited Choices discussion (merged threads)

posted by ADavidson on - last edited - Viewed by 17.4K users
I was a bit disappointed with the story choices. Reminded me of LA Noir, where most game choices are superficial. If you pick Shawn he still dies the same. Even if the other chosen character died(Doug or Carlie), the other said the same things. And no matter what I said nothing changed story points, like Larry shoving you down even if you side with him. Oh and with Glenn, if you hand the girl the gun he says how can you let people give up but if you refuse he says how can you deny someone's choice! The character's in the game should have the same convictions no matter what you choose, this is unacceptable character development.

Supposedly the choices of Episode 1 greatly affect how everyone views you though... I sure hope the following episodes prove more impressive with the choices, and I realllllly hope it branches out and expands more. For a 2hr game it should have a lot more possibilities.

I know it's only a $5 game, just please don't let me down.

Otherwise, the story itself was awesome, the gameplay is really good and the art style is incredible. Still the best TT game to date! Keep it up guys!
641 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • I agree they over-sold the customization of the narrative more than they should have. Don’t get me wrong, this is a wonderful game overall, and TTG has done an amazing job creating a powerful, emotional story with some of the most multi-dimensional characters I’ve ever seen in a video game. And there are certainly a large number of choices in the game that challenge us to make profound moral decisions that affect us as players, along with the way characters react to us in dialogues; but there’s a lack of substantive consequence to any of our decisions beyond this.

    Granted, I recognize that it’s very costly to a developer to create numerous story branches within a single game. Even if each episode only had one major binary choice that altered the flow of the game, you’d wind up with 32 (2^5) potential paths by the end. Depending on the severity of the consequence, that can skyrocket development costs and time.

    That said, I think there are missed opportunities to create a more asymmetric, tailored experience for players without adding a lot additional work. Mind you, I’m not a developer, so I can’t say for certain how much work any particular idea would add, but not every major choice needs to reverberate throughout the entire game, and having some consequence outside of different dialogue choices would be nice. Arguably, the only real decision to date that’s had any substantial consequence was the decision between saving Doug or Carley in episode 1. Unfortunately, this is cheapened by the fact that they act as functional equivalents in the story from that point forward. Neither has much of a role in episode 2, outside of saving you near the end, and they die in the exact same place in episode 3. As devastated as I was when Carley was killed (kudos to you, TTG; you took the wind completely out of my sails—I actually had to walk away from my computer for a few minutes to compose myself), when I learned Doug shared the same fate, I felt like my experience was cheapened, because there was much less consequence to my prior choice.

    I’m not sure what the added costs in terms of time or resources would have been, so I can’t attest to how feasible this is, but a nice touch would have been for Carley to have died at that point regardless, while in a Doug game to have Ben be killed instead (or maybe a choice between the two, dependent upon your actions). In a Doug game, I wouldn’t know that Ben was the traitor, and that would be fine—it’d be great, in fact, because that sort of asymmetry creates replay value and adds depth to my choices. From this point on, Ben and Doug could serve the story in a functionally synonymous way, outside of cosmetic dialogue differences, resulting in a richer, more asymmetrical experience, and very likely without onerous additions to development cost and minimizing the impact on the overall direction of the story. I don't know TTG's story going forward or their plans for Ben in driving the narrative, but this is meant to be an example of the types of additions that would be nice.

    You could add little experiences like this throughout the game. Dependent upon your standing with another character, maybe a certain location or task is completely eliminated or opened up. Since a lot of my actions affect how others view me, it would be nice to have those translate into tangible impacts on the story. Or at least create minor fissures in the gameplay.

    If I decide to shoot the girl at the beginning of episode 3, for example, maybe that prevents me from entering the pharmacy to get any supplies, instead resulting in a frantic escape through the back alleys of Macon from the undead. And if I don’t shoot, I can take my time perusing the shelves. No long term impact, other than a frustrated Lilly when we get back to the motel, but it’s a little fissure that spices up gameplay. This requires developing a few extra areas and quick time events, so maybe that is asking a lot, but it would definitely add to the asymmetry of the game without dramatically altering the story.

    Or if I decide to help Kenny kill Larry, maybe he steps up to save me in the barn and kills Danny, eliminating that decision entirely. Some might argue that that robs the player of a key moral moment in Lee’s development, which I won’t deny; but I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing. The stories we could tell about our experiences would be that much richer if some people were never confronted with that choice at all while others were. I’d certainly want to fire my game back up and see how the story plays out knowing I might be confronted with different choices in another play through. And for something like this there are minimal development costs and no changes to the story, but it adds a greater variety to our individual experiences. Something like Lilly coming to our aid in the final fight with Andy if we help her with her father, rather than her just watching us struggle on our own is a step in the right direction, albeit a very minimal one.

    I think these are the sorts of touches that are missing at the moment—decisions that add variety outside of who I can talk to and their dispositions toward me. Branching storylines and the ability to save any character we want from death—nice (and selfish) as those things might be—aren’t the goal; I think many of us just want to feel like the effects of our choices aren’t confined to dialogue possibilities. We want to know that we’re having a tangible impact on the world we experience. And though I realize a lot people struggle to conjure the patience needed to wait for the latest episode to come out—again, a testament to the excellent caliber of game you’ve created, TTG—I’m in the camp that would rather wait several extra months if it meant having a game that incorporated this type of significance into our decisions.
  • Many of us still looking for something that will have impact for the story. For example:
    ProjectPIKA;663032 said:
    I have a theory and I COULD be wrong but here it is anyway..

    Remember Jolene and the Save-Lot bandits? well do you remember the part in episode two (I think it's like at the very end) where she shoots the bandits in the back of a vehicle and you can hear them screaming in the video? Well my theory is that the vehicle Lee and company find is the BANDIT's vehicle (my reason for thinking this is because there's tons of food and supplies found) --- Since the stuff was taken whether you agreed with Kenny or not, I think the decision affected the third episode, drastically either way.

    Because the food and supplies were taken from the Save-Lots bandits vehicle, they started looking towards Lee and company for supplies. I'm guessing that somewhere along the end of episode 2, Ben was threatened (and convinced..somewhat) that one of his classmates might be alive, so he started to secretly hand over medicine and what-not to the bandits so that they would not harm the others and he'd be able to see his classmate...sooner or later....

    So yes. The decision at the end of episode two DID have major consequences for episode 3 and here's why;

    1). Because they took the food, the bandits started targeting Lee and company's group for supplies. (I kind of dislike how.. despite disagreeing with taking the food from the vehicle at the end of episode two, the group decides to take it anyway..)
    [...]

    I think you don't understand The Walking Dead and creators of this world.
    Saracenar wrote it good.
    Saracenar;662704 said:

    [...]
    What I take from my choices are more metaphorical. If I side with Lilly to try and revive her father, I feel like I'm doing something drastically different than if I chose to help Kenny kill him. Even though the game isn't drastically altered as a result, I feel something different.

    You don't have to see the differences to know they are there.
    For me when I'm entering the world of The Walking Dead I'm really dead. I mean that if I would like to be alive I have to abandon my principles, give up hope and accept The Walking Dead rules.

    When you are playing you can think that your choices are really matter. You also think that your choices are able to change something, but you should get used to that you are just only a part of the story, not the creator and mostly important you can take a stand on what is happening. The stand shows you "who you are" and "how you changed" because of apocalypse. It is not important where you are going, who is going with you, what is happening, who can you trust. Important is what you decided to being still alive, how far you can wade into this world, and if you can trust yourself.

    Our choices are really interesting from the point of view of sociology. Of course it is only the game, but I think (and hope) We won't be able to experience something like this in the real world, so maybe in the end of the game TTG will show us how we have changed.
  • Raidenorius;664850 said:
    Many of us still looking for something that will have impact for the story. For example:

    I think you don't understand The Walking Dead and creators of this world.
    Saracenar wrote it good.


    For me when I'm entering the world of The Walking Dead I'm really dead. I mean that if I would like to be alive I have to abandon my principles, give up hope and accept The Walking Dead rules.

    When you are playing you can think that your choices are really matter. You also think that your choices are able to change something, but you should get used to that you are just only a part of the story, not the creator and mostly important you can take a stand on what is happening. The stand shows you "who you are" and "how you changed" because of apocalypse. It is not important where you are going, who is going with you, what is happening, who can you trust. Important is what you decided to being still alive, how far you can wade into this world, and if you can trust yourself.

    Our choices are really interesting from the point of view of sociology. Of course it is only the game, but I think (and hope) We won't be able to experience something like this in the real world, so maybe in the end of the game TTG will show us how we have changed.
    Great post, man. Nicely said and it captures how I feel about the game. It's the decisions that change you, not the outcome.
  • I'm going to reserve judgement until I play the entire thing.
    I will say up to this point I've been having a great time playing.
  • Garland7G;664880 said:
    I'm going to reserve judgement until I play the entire thing.
    I will say up to this point I've been having a great time playing.
    that's how i feel, i would actually recommend that people buy the game at this point, but i don't quite know how i would describe the game play, right now i would say is like a film where you pick the dialogue choices but not the action and you choose the personality of the main character and they should decide whether that makes a difference to them, i wouldn't say it was a game where choices matter (at this point) but that is because i don't speak in metaphor or in a way that is supposed to be open for interpretation
  • Raidenorius;664850 said:

    When you are playing you can think that your choices are really matter. You also think that your choices are able to change something, but you should get used to that you are just only a part of the story, not the creator and mostly important you can take a stand on what is happening. The stand shows you "who you are" and "how you changed" because of apocalypse. It is not important where you are going, who is going with you, what is happening, who can you trust. Important is what you decided to being still alive, how far you can wade into this world, and if you can trust yourself.

    Our choices are really interesting from the point of view of sociology. Of course it is only the game, but I think (and hope) We won't be able to experience something like this in the real world, so maybe in the end of the game TTG will show us how we have changed.

    You can't take seriously choices from the point of sociology. Mostly all of us making it while know how far its from real world so when things like this come happen you will probably make a lots things another way. Also I am missing more options in dialogues if I wanna look more in personality of player. Still I keep beliving my choices matter and it will dramaticly impact game so I will also judge game after playing whole series but if it will continue coming like this it will be big disappointment...
  • I've enjoyed the game so far.
    It's nice having to make moral choices and all but when Carly died and couldnt be saved, that's when I lost the sense to play again for the other outcomes, since the outcome will be the same no matter what you did or do.
    pls bring back Carly or give us at least the option to be able to save her.
    From now on I don't think I will care about what choice I have to make in the next episodes as it won't really matter at all in the end not to me anyway.
    Great job on the drama and plottwists etc... but I feel Telltale should have at least given that moment the same choice as with Doug/Carley in ep1. This ruined it a bit for me :(
    There goes the replay value...
  • As far as im concerned the developers failed with the core idea of the game. Your choices dont matter no matter what.
    EP1.
    Shawn dies no matter what
    ep2
    Larry dies no matter outcomes and hates you not matter what
    Mark dies no matter what
    ep3
    Carly/Doug
    Katjaa
    Duck
  • The only choices that matter in the game are the choices you make with the dialogue, making Kenny respect you more or Lily and so on, but that doesn't actually change anything atall, just the way they respond, which is linear, not really different.

    They are really false advertising (constantly) with the 'your choices matter' line all the time, and the sentence(s) at the start of each episode.
  • Personally I think if there was a way to save Shawn, Carley and everyone else, everyone would choose that route and it would be boring. At least now we can have debate on characters and decisions. Besides it's a zombie apocalypse, and the walking dead universe so you can't save everyone and innocents will die.
This discussion has been closed.