TWD:TFS Ep1 - AChicken's Impressions (SPOILERS)
Season 4 has rolled around so it's time for another impressions thread of mine.
First off, thank you almighty Telltale Save God for actually importing every single one of my recorded series choices from the ANF file. I barely recall what I had chosen in my original playthrough of Season 1, as that was so long ago on the PS3.
Given that I loaded that into Season 3, I'm glad nothing went wrong. Every choice in the Story Generator recap was filled in for me, and I immediately remembered that the choices for S1 it had shown were correct (to the best of my knowledge.) It even remembered how I took the supplies in S1E2 and how Clem was wearing the sweater in Episode 5. It remembered my S2 ending and how it came to be. It remembered the minor AJ choice in S3. I was stressed the whole way through, but I'm glad it delivered. (one thing I had to fill in myself was the Lee quote, but I assume S1 never bothered to save that for future reference.)
Maybe I'm just lucky. Real lucky. I don't know, I don't really get many glitches in Telltale's games, thankfully.
On to the episode...
The choice generator being the previously on segment was clever. The fact that they made the title screen go straight into the game was kinda meh, since I wanted to tweak some settings first in the main menu, but I guess it kept the suspense up of what the full thing looked like. I can totally see the design of the choice generator being used as a "previously on" segment for the season.
- +That intro music is great. I'm glad they made it fit in well with this season. (I wonder if we'll get different visuals in the intro in each episode?)
- -Tiny gameplay inconsistency: you can 'unlock the door' without checking if it's locked by simply finding the knife first. I assumed it was open, apparently, Clementine already knew it was not.
- -another tiny thing, and I only noticed this in the beginning, but some people's faces didn't transition between expressions quite well. Can't blame it I guess. It's an old engine.
- +Entering the main building, I was really pleased to see how they implemented this ink-black design in the environment. Things fade into darker, monochrome-ish, noir type colours when you're further away. If you get closer, they become more detailed and colours appear.
- +Louis... I think I like you. Now stop singing.
- +Rosie killing walkers is deliciously scary.... and it's nice how they tied Clem's fear of that into her encounter in S2.
- I was going to say how the game makes these characters trust Clem a bit too fast, but I can only assume that they've pretty lenient on new people who they saved from a car crash. She's also closer to their age so they probably trust her more. Maybe it's a "Don't kill us or we'll have to kill you" kind of deal.
- +The combat (and utilization of traps) is a nice step up for this series. Shame it has to happen at the end...
- +The courtyard scene is great, but after I had talked to everyone (except Marlon) the game had me worried I had missed him. A cutscene played so I thought it was dinner. Nope. AJ just told me how he was "ready to talk to Marlon". Really AJ? I haven't approached Mar. yet and you didn't seem opposed to it when I suggested it earlier...
- +Javier reference at the dinner table!!! Famous Baseball player!! WOOOOO
- ...this next point I've got written down in my notes I'm unclear about. (I started the episode yesterday, didn't finish it till recently) Whatever it was, it's something about AJ was drawing a picture of Clem, and I think one of them mentions how he hasn't done this in a while or that he doesn't know.... whatever it was I was reminded that the Wellington players wouldn't get this mentioned. *From an Alone player to you, I'm so sorry Wellington people. Hope you get your reference.
- Also: Aj'd drawing description "He tried really hard" vs Tenn's drawing "It's really good"... Wow Telltale, no sugarcoating for a post-apocalyptic unartistic 6-year old? Ouch.
- [Next there's the whole map thing...] I was kind of disappointed we couldn't explore before we left, but priorities I guess.
- +I went hunting. The zombie groan followed by the steady hum in music was glorious. Upped the tension and cool factor of the scene so much. Sound Design gets a plus from me!
- -Unfortunately, after not getting any meat and finding the supply shack ransacked, we're forced (either way I guess) to go outside the safe zone to the destroyed and overrun train station for food. I don't really like how I'm forced to break the rules and endanger the group. I thought Marlon was going to kill me, and I had no say in the matter.
- +That whole confrontation with Abel was soooo tense. Kudos to you Telltale for not making it a firefight.
- -Returning to the bedroom, you can talk to AJ. Well, sort of. Why don't we have many conversation starters with AJ in this season yet? There are even a number of other characters who I don't remember being able to engage with. That was a nice feature in Season 1 to learn about people, gain trust and empathy towards them when they inevitably die.
- +Despite some qualms I have in not killing zombie-Brody faster and trying to lock her in the basement, that whole Basement scene was amazing. Tense and scary without having to devolve into action too quickly.
- +That talkative standoff was tense and epic. I think there were maybe too many thunder strikes but it was awesome.
- ....Now we're at the ending of my notes - and the episode. What do I have to say? Ummm, I think I need to process this and talk with other users about it before I have a verdict on the conclusion. I both like and don't like it. What I can leave you with for now off the top of my head is... What kind of MARIANA thing was that??! Why Telltale?!?
All in all, I'd give this episode a 3/10 because Pirate Javier didn't appear at the end trying to kill Clem
Seriously, if I were any good at rating things I think I'd give this episode an 8.5. It's not perfect, there's a lot Telltale does right here -- way more than ANF -- but what is here is an amazing return to form for The Walking Dead, and something I'm glad to have witnessed. Can't wait for Episode 2.
wake me up when september ends