Genre:    Adventure Horror 

Developer & Publisher:    Telltale Games            

Released:     December 2016, May 2017           

Requirements (minimum):

  • OS: Windows 7 64Bit Service Pack 1 or higher
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz
  • Memory: 3 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GTS 450+ with 1024MB+ VRAM (excluding GT)
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Storage: 8 GB available space
  • Sound Card: Direct X 11 sound device
  • Additional Notes: Not Recommended for Intel integrated graphics


    By flotsam


    The Walking Dead: A New Frontier: Episode 1

    Telltale Games

    What better way to pass the mid-season tv hiatus than to see what Clementine is up to.

    (Speaking of the tv series, shouldn’t they have shot Negan the first time he showed up at the gates of Alexandria?)

    Back to Clementine.

    I left her in Season 2, by herself save for one other, but it is a while before I see her again. After a flashback, this episode lobs us into a new group - Javier, his sister-in-law Kate and her two step children. Like everyone else, they are trying to get by.

    Like everyone else, it never works out as you would have liked.

    A junkyard offers some promising scavenging, then an inevitable confrontation. Where we go next you can discover for yourself. Where we end was a surprise, but not really given the world we are in. Some stuff is inevitable, whether you see it coming or not.

    Javier is the playable character here, save for a Clementine flashback. No longer a girl, it suggests we will find out a lot more about how she has become the young woman we now have, and what has happened in between. Based on the choices I made earlier, I can’t say I am surprised about the former, and look forward to the latter.

    We know not very much about Javier but no doubt will learn as we go. At this stage I reserve judgement, although I am leaning towards being positively disposed. That might depend on the choices I make.

    So far, all but one of my choices is in the minority, so that already promises some interesting replay prospects.

    Two episodes were released at once, but I intend to now wait and play all episodes back to back. It plays and looks like all the other Walking Dead episodes, but was less frenetic on the action sequences. It clocked in at 80 minutes and finished on a largish choice, and while there was nothing new here, that isn’t in itself a bad thing.


    The Walking Dead: A new Frontier – Episodes 2 and 3

    I said at the end of Episode 1 that I was going to wait until all 5 episodes were available and play the lot, but then the TV series ended and I was left suffering withdrawals so I had to get stuck back in.

    Telltale released the first two episodes at once, and they were really two halves of one episode. Which is not to say that episode 3 doesn’t follow on, but rather that there is little reason to stop, as I did, at the end of episode 1. Which now sounds way too convoluted, so let’s move on.

    We left off with a confrontation that didn’t go well, and we leave episode 3 with gunshots in the dark that could result in anything. In between, I have come to give a damn about Javier, and not because some of my choices have cast him in a less than generous light.

    Javier remains the point from which the primary storyline is observed, but there are flashbacks about what happened to Clementine before she found this new group. There is a convergence of those events that you may or may not see coming. The end of the second episode, which is excellent, I didn’t foresee.

    Clementine has shed any trappings of being a little girl. She reminds me of Maggie in the tv series, and is more likely to precipitate events than watch them occur. We know her well, much better than Javier and the others, so I wasn’t surprised she assumed a central place in the group, but I was a little surprised that others went along with it. Ditto Javier, who assumes a leadership position that on its face is inconsistent with what people know about him, especially compared to their familiarity with others in their group. But perhaps that is what leadership does – it cuts through, and is apparent regardless of other things. That is, we know it when we see it, and are prepared to follow.

    The emphasis on “family” (in the broader sense of the word) is pronounced in this season, and offers some interesting choices. There were also some stark choices which suggest some excellent replay value – “open fire” as opposed to “submit”. I won’t really know until I try, but given the outcome from the former, I anticipate a few more characters being alive from the latter.

    There are many parallels with things going on in the tv series, including a story arc harking back to the very earliest episodes. I thought that was a strength of the Game of Thrones series, and am enjoying it here.

    The actiony bits remain, none terribly hard, and if you die just try again. There were occasional bits where you had to walk forward for no other reason than to give you something to do (as opposed to just watching), and given the number of conversation choices I would have been happy just to watch. I felt I was indeed contributing to the events, without having artificially to do so.

    At this stage, I am probably enjoying this one more than the previous series, and am looking forward to the last two episodes.

    The Walking Dead: A new Frontier – Episodes 4 and 5

    As usual, I went back to the first three chapters and played it as a job lot to get to the end. Having done so, I was a little surprised.

    I ended up feeling that it didn’t hang together as well as I had thought it was when played in pieces. Why it felt that way (then as opposed to now) I don’t know; I would probably expect the opposite.

    In some ways it involved Clementine, perhaps overly influenced by the end. Her story will continue, say the words on the screen as she walks away. Which emphasised the extent to which her place in this series ultimately felt a little contrived, like a detour. It wouldn’t be this series if there wasn’t Clementine, so she takes us somewhere, involves us in what this series is really about, then continues on her way.

    I think that became most evident to me in a scene involving the tried and true method of walking undisturbed through a herd of walkers. Clementine was the mechanism by which Javier knew what to do and then did what had to be done. My earlier surprise at the leadership role she was able to assume became less surprising if she was seen not so much as a leader but as the orchestrator. Everyone else is providing the real colour and movement; she is there to steer it around.

    Which didn’t make it unenjoyable, just different to how it had seemed.

    The family aspects remain, with all their foibles and complications, and there are some interesting choices to be made. It got a little clichéd at times, but that might have been a result of my choices. The gamut of human emotions is played out, many not so good, and as always you don’t get to the end with everyone intact, physically or mentally. Some are better people because of the experience, or at least they tell themselves that.

    The action sequences seemed tame compared to other series, especially towards the end. I can recall aiming in the past to deal with a group of walkers; here it is simply hit the q key in time. The back end again changed my feelings somewhat; the game was giving me something to do because it had to, rather than because it was actively involving me. I finished thinking I would almost have been just as happy with the conversations, leaving everything else to the game.

    It took about 8 hours in one go, and I did enjoy it. Just not perhaps as much as I had thought I was.

    I played on:

    OS: Windows 10, 64 Bit

    Processor: Intel i7-6700 4GHz

    RAM: 32GB GDDR5

    Video card: AMD Radeon RX 470 8192MB


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