Suburban Timewaster

I play video games and review them.

Archive for the tag “telltale”

Game of Thrones Episode 2: The Lost Lords (Steam)

After Ramsay Snow murders Ethan Forrester and hands their livelihood over to their rival house, The Whitehills, the family struggles to maintain their once great house.  Fortunately, Rodrik returns to become the new Lord under dire circumstances.  Meanwhile, Mira Forrester secretly plots to overthrow the Whitehills while working as Lady Margeary’s handmaiden in King’s Landing and Asher, the exiled Forrester, is on his way home from Meereen with an army of sellswords.

I should warn you; this is the second episode of a TellTales game, so spoilers are unavoidable.  For instance, Rodrik supposedly died in Episode One and then came back in Episode Two, his death turning out to be an exaggeration.  Personally, I felt that was a cop out that they centered so much drama around Lord Forrester and Rodrik’s deaths, forcing Ethan to be the new lord.  Then they destroy all the drama surrounding it by revealing that Rodrik’s alive and he can take over as the New Lord.  I’ll admit, I actually liked Ethan and his struggles with having responsibility thrust on him at a young age.  This was why I wasn’t happy to see Ramsay kill him at the end.  I think it would have been more dramatic to keep Ryon dead and see how the Forresters truly struggle.

Mira Forrester’s scenes are some of my favorites, partly because they include Tyrion, who’s my favorite character in the show, other than Daenarys.

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Don’t get me wrong, I actually like Mira, her struggles and how you can make her a total badass, if you so choose.  Though I think Tyrion might have been a little sloppy in his assistance.  Let me put it this way, this is the same man who told Lady Stark that, if he were to plot an assassination, he wouldn’t hand the assassin a dagger that could be easily traced back to him.  When Joffrey’s killers frame Tyrion for the murder, he points out that, if he were to murder Joffrey, he wouldn’t do so in a way that leaves him standing there holding the cup.  Tyrion also had to see who Cersei’s spy was on the council, so he deliberately told each member of his plan to betroth Myrcella to a different ward.  I think that, if Tyrion were to ally with Mira, he would do so in a way where his alliance would not expose her or himself.  For one thing, he approaches Mira while she’s with Sera, the other handmaiden, and not asking to speak to Mira in private.  Tyrion also failed to dismiss the Lannister guard before bringing Mira to the meeting.

Speaking of Sera she has a small part in this and it’s something I actually like.  She is a bastard and, while we see many male bastards in the show and learn how hard life is for them, we never learn what it’s like for females.  In the world of Game of Thrones, no matter how bad things get for men, women always have it worse.  Therefore, you can bet that life would be worse for a woman bastard, something I wish the show would explore and, I hope the game will take the chance to.  No matter how bad things get for men, they always have the Night’s Watch as an option.  I’ll admit, it’s not a great one but it’s better than nothing.  How would a woman bastard be able to cope in Westeros?  In the case of Sera, she needs to secure a marriage to a man of high rank in order to establish her security.

Gared joined the Night’s Watch and he hasn’t fared well.

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I don’t know what the popular opinion about The Wall is, but my mom absolutely hates it.  She finds it dull with only a few matters of interest.  Personally, I like The Wall but that’s because I’m in love with Jon Snow, who gets to make an appearance in this game and advises Gared in life as a member of the Night’s Watch.

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So far, nothing really happens except that Gared gets into a few fights and has trouble getting along with many of the other recruits.  Gared also talks to Jon Snow, the one redeeming feature about The Wall, about the Red Wedding.  They even discuss why Gared wants to be a ranger.

We heard about Asher in Episode One, but we never really get to meet him until now.  I’ll admit, I like Asher’s journey as well as his companion, Beshka.  You can tell that they’re both good friends who’ve seen each other through the good and the bad and are trying to survive in a harsh climate.

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They both made a living as sellswords and have quite a few enemies to deal with.  I was happy when Malcolm comes to get them and tells Asher the plan to save House Forrester.  I already said their plan is to hire an army of sellswords to take back House Forrester, but what will they hire them with?  Sellswords cost money, which they don’t seem to have in abundance.  Maybe they plan to pay them with Ironwood, which is their livelihood, but you only get to keep half of it if you managed to convince Ramsay that the Forresters are the better craftsmen.  Even then, you give over another half as dowry to convince Elaena Glenmore to marry Rodrik.

I particularly loved how Episode Two ended.  Talia sings at the funeral for Ethan and Lord Forrester and the former’s last words influence the lyrics in her song.

I found this particularly moving not only because of the beautiful song, but also because of the shift of scenes to the other Forresters and Gared dealing with the aftermath of their own decisions and their own struggles to save their family, even if they don’t live at Ironrath anymore.  It’s enough to make you cry.

The game play is typical of TellTale games.  You make dialogue decisions for each character you play and the game compares the more important ones to what the other players decided.  I’m just going to say right now that your decisions don’t really matter.  For instance, there’s one scene where you have to choose whether Rodrik kisses Lord Whitehill’s ring out of respect in order to let his younger brother, Ryon, the Whitehills’ hostage on Ramsay’s orders, attend the funeral for his father and brother or refuse and allow Rodrik to keep his dignity.

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No matter what choice you make, the outcome is inevitably the same.  So don’t kiss the ring and let Rodrik rule the house with his head held high.  You can also explore scenes with the character you play and collect items for your inventory, even if that doesn’t really accomplish anything.  There will be quick time events where you have to press the right button, so don’t drop your guard for even a second.  The Wall also has a game play event where you can demonstrate Gared’s skills in strength, swords and crossbows.  I’ll admit that I actually liked that part, even if shooting the crossbow is a little tricky due to the constant movement.

This game is intriguing yet doesn’t seem to explore its potential.  I give it 6 out of 10, a bit of a letdown but maybe it will get better.

The Walking Dead Game Season 2 Episode 5: No Going Back (Steam Store)


After Rebecca dies, the group now has a baby to take care of. Meanwhile, Kenny goes further and further to the dark side. Can Clementine help take care of a baby and try to keep her old friend from slipping into insanity?

This is the final episode of the season but I don’t think the Walking Dead video game series is over yet. As finales go, this one’s definitely the most heartbreaking. This is also the episode where your choices most affect the outcome of the game. I don’t want to spoil anything but I will say this. Your choices determine where Clementine’s loyalty lies.

This game plays out just like the previous ones. You pick dialogue choices for Clementine during certain parts of the game. Other parts have you take control of Clementine and explore the scene. Like previous games, you will have to make a decision at crucial moments and any decision you make influences the plot big time. One more thing, there are action scenes you’ll be required to take part in where you have to press the right key at the right time. At the end of the game, you’ll see what choices the other game players make.

This game is addictive and tragic. I give it 9 out of 10; it was quite an emotional blow.

Fables: Wolf Among Us Episode 3: A Crooked Mile (Steam Store)


After Bigby discovers Ichabod Crane’s obsession with Snow White, he’s made Crane the prime suspect in the murder of Lilly and Faith. Is Crane the killer or is there a larger force at work greater than Bigby and Snow could ever imagine?

That’s right, I wrote spoilers in the very first paragraph. It’s not easy reviewing a video game episode by episode and trying to avoid them. I’ll try to avoid spoilers for this episode, so all I’ll say is that the plot’s thickening up. I do like that they didn’t romanticize Crane’s disgusting obsession, as they tend to do in other media regarding an ugly guy liking a beautiful girl. Instead, they compared Crane’s obsession with Snow to Bigby’s love for her, saying that it’s okay for Snow to get with the big tough guy. Considering how the comic books turn out, they might not have had a choice in that one. I also like that they’re showing Snow getting more ruthless as the game goes on. I’m starting to think this whole game is about the character development Snow and Bigby go through to become the people they were in the comic books. Later on, a popular urban legend makes an appearance and, let me tell you, this character’s as creepy as they come. Bigby finally goes full-blown wolf, something the game has been teasing us about for quite a while.

The game play hasn’t changed in the slightest. You explore scenes and make dialogue choices for Bigby when prompted. Some choices determine Bigby’s relationship with the characters, so you can bet that some of them have a major plot point for the story. When you’re done, you can view the Book of Fables you collected and compare the choices you made with other players.

This game is intriguing, addictive and a little creepy. I give it 9 out of 10; the climax of the game.

The Walking Dead Game Season 1 Part 5: No Time Left (Steam Store)

Someone’s kidnapped Clementine and a walker bit Lee.  Can Lee save Clementine before he becomes another undead monster?

This is the episode where the first season ends.  Who you take with you depends on your choices in the previous episode.  I don’t want to give anything away, so I’ll keep in brief.  Remember when you took food from a truck at the end of episode 2?  Now you get to see the consequences of your decision.  Oh, and if you don’t get choked up at the end, you have no heart.

This episode is played the same way as the previous ones were.  You explore various scenes to collect items for your inventory.  You also pick the dialogue options and make choices throughout the game.  What choice you make strongly affects the storyline.

The game is heartbreaking and addictive.  I give it 9 out of 10; I choked up at some parts.

The Walking Dead Season 1 Part 4: Around Every Corner (Steam Store)

When the group finally arrives at their destination, they focus on finding a boat.  Unfortunately, a man is stalking them and communicating with them on the radio.  They also have to go to a town called Crawford, a place so focused on survival that children, the sick and the elderly are shot on sight.

This is when we see just how far some citizens are willing to go to survive.  Partway through the game the characters have to go to Crawford and, spoiler alert, everyone there is dead.  It shows that you can’t create the perfect survival race and when going through Crawford we get an idea of how the citizens must have lived.  One part I really liked were the doctor tapes where he tries to convince a pregnant woman to abort her baby by telling her that she’ll be kicked out if she doesn’t.  We also discover the back-story of a new character named Molly.  What I don’t get is why the doctor would film such incriminating evidence against himself (if you play the game you’ll understand).

This game is not simplistic with anything and that includes cowardice.  The character of Ben is not well liked and I was once of the same sentiment.  He has a tendency to make bad decisions.  When he and Clementine were surrounded by walkers he ran.  After reading the character articles on tvtropes.org, I realized that I was being too hard on him.  Remember my Rule of Rose review where I called the main character, Jennifer, timid?  You may think I hated her but I thought her character was well-written and very realistic.  She was a little orphan girl who didn’t have the emotional capacity to stand up to the people tormenting her and it had disastrous results.  Ben is a guy too old for a guardian to handle the situation, unlike Clementine and Duck, and too young for the emotional maturity to handle it himself, unlike Lee and Kenny.  Yes I am aware that Molly is younger than Ben and able to handle herself with the walkers but she had people depending on her.  Ben doesn’t have anyone that needs him.  I know that many of us that watch the series fantasize that we’re going to be like Darryl or Michonne but the reality is, if we were put into a situation like this, more likely we’re turn out to be Ben.

The game play is the same as it’s always been.  You go through the storyline and make choices throughout the game.  You can explore the scene and gather items to use later.  During fighting scenes, you have to press the right button to survive.  At this point I wonder if I shouldn’t just copy/paste this paragraph instead of writing it out each time.

This game is intriguing and addictive.  I give it 8 out of 10; a fine addition to the episodic video game.

The Walking Dead Game Season 1 Part 3: Long Road Ahead (Steam Store)

After escaping a horrible death, the group returns to the motel.  Unfortunately, they’re divided by whether it’s time to leave or if they should stay.  If that wasn’t enough, some of their supplies have gone missing and a member of the group’s to blame.

Anyone who knows The Walking Dead is aware that no one ever stays in perfect harmony.  You can imagine that after the last episode the group is even more on edge than they were before.  Not only do they have to worry about walkers but they can’t trust humans anymore either.  I would say that this episode is the climax of the season because Lilly loses her hold on the group and the surviving members decide to leave the motel.  This is also the episode where Lee has to face certain truths about their situation.  One of them being that if he wants Clementine to stay alive, he’ll have to teach her how to fight.

The game play is the same as the last one.  You walk around and examine various items.  You can also make dialogue choices for Lee and make decisions at crucial moments.  You will have plenty of quick time events where you have to press the right button if you want to survive the walkers.

This game is addictive and intriguing.  I give it 7 out of 10; a good follow-up to the second episode.

The Walking Dead Game Season 1 Part 2: Starved for Help (Steam Store)

After making their way out of the drug store alive, Lee and the surviving members of his group are struggling with very little food at an abandoned motel.  When a couple of strangers offer to let them stay at their farm, it seems like the group’s luck has changed.  Have they finally found a home or is there more to this simple country family than meets the eye?

The answer to that last question is obvious if you remember one simple fact, if something is too good to be true than chances are it actually is.  I don’t want to give too much away but the plot is similar to Fievel Goes West when the cats trick the mice in New York to move to Utah by making them believe that cats and mice live in harmony there.  Instead, the cats use the mice as willing slaves and plan on eating the mice when they’ve outlived their usefulness, the mice never suspecting a thing.  In this game, many of the characters are suspicious of the farmers.  This episode is one of my favorites because it stays true to its source material by having the humans be more frightening than the walkers.

The game play is the same as it was in the last episode.  You explore various locations as Lee and collect items.  You also pick what Lee says and have to make difficult choices at certain points in the game.  During action scenes, make sure to press the right button if you want to get out of the game alive.

This game is frightening and addictive.  I give it 10 out of 10; a perfect demonstration of don’t fear the dead, fear the living.

The Walking Dead Season One Part 1: A New Day (Steam Store)

The zombie apocalypse has just begun and it’s up to you to survive.  Play as Lee Everett as you make difficult choices and fight through hordes of zombies just to stay alive for one more day.

A New Day

On the way to prison, Lee Everett discovers that the world has gone to hell.  Not only does he have to keep himself alive, he also has to become a surrogate parent for a lost little girl.  In other words, he finds himself out of the frying pan and into the fire.

With The Walking Dead gaining so much popularity it’s not surprising that Telltale would make a video game based off it.  This is the prequel to the series except with characters that are entirely original.  A few characters from the series do make cameos in the game, such as Herschel and Glenn, but other than that entirely original.  The plot is nothing more than an introduction to the characters and they do not disappoint.  Each character brings something unique to the group.

The game play is unique in that it’s not about killing zombies.  You talk to people and sometimes you have to make difficult choices.  One example is that two characters will be in trouble and you have to pick which one to save.  There are fighting scenes but all you have to do is press the right thing at the right time.  Sometimes you will have to move around in order to explore your surroundings.

This game is addictive and unique.  I give it 7 out of 10; a good introduction to the game.

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