The Walking Dead: Episode 3 Review
That the game continues to surprise is phenomenal. Things continue to get worse with each new episode, and Telltale’s tragic zombie apocalypse story just gets better. I’m absolutely loving this game.
The triumph of Episode 3 is that, while Telltale has challenged players with tragedy in its previous installments — this is a dark, dark, sad game — this is the first time that it has really been affecting. S–t does indeed get real in Episode 3, and though it’s awful for the characters, the storytelling is just phenomenal here. I’d say Episode 3 is the best we’ve yet seen of the series, and I remain hopeful that the next two episodes can continue to hold this level of quality.
The Walking Dead Episode 3: Long Road Ahead: PC (reviewed), Xbox 360, PS3
Developer: Telltale Games
Publisher: Telltale Games
Released: Aug. 29, 2012
MSRP: $24.99 (all five episodes)
Begin spoilers if you haven’t played Episodes 1 and 2. We’ll keep it brief.
Last time, the remaining survivors of the dairy discovered enough food to keep them going, but they attracted the attentions of a group of bandits that had been extorting the St. Johns for food. About a week has passed and while supplies are holding out, Lee and the others are making frequent supply runs to Macon in hopes of getting by — and there’s an ever-present threat of violence from the bandits.
But the underlying threads of the group are unraveling, and quickly. What happened at the dairy has everyone on-edge. Tensions between Lilly and Kenny are near breaking. The mental state of several of the survivors is in question. And there’s the ever-present discussion: stay at the motor inn or make a try for the coast?
Episode 3 continues to build on all the tensions of the last two episodes brilliantly. Every interaction feels charged with a potential for…what? Outbursts, certainly. A breaking of the group, potentially. Violence? Perhaps.
The action flows pretty rapidly as well. Earlier episodes have done a good job of balancing “walk around the area talking to everyone” with set pieces that come out of nowhere and often unbalance the scales in a hurry. Those in “Long Road Ahead” feel a little simpler than in times past, perhaps. One section involves shooting a lot of targets with a rifle, and at no point did it require a notable degree of accuracy — it was more about reaction time.