Telltale Games had a tall task ahead of them when they took on The Walking Dead the first time around, considering the track record of games based on the brand prior. After some past successes, Telltale was kind of in a rut entering 2012 with the disappointing Jurassic Park and Law & Order based games, but the developer returned to prominence with the highly successful The Walking Dead: Season One that won multiple Game of the Year awards.
While the gameplay was fun, the first season was most well known for its choose-your-own adventure style story where all of your decisions affect the rest of the game. As a result, Telltale absolutely had to make sure the story was the focus once again in Season Two, which starts with Episode 1 titled “All That Remains.”
Just as a word of warning, there may be light spoilers. I will try to avoid speaking of much, but there will at least be some mention of how Season 1 transitions to Season 2. The first episode of The Walking Dead: Season Two starts off very soon after the events of the original, with a 16 month time jump occurring soon after. Rather than following the protagonist of the first game, Lee Everett, this time you take control of the growing ever more independent Clementine.
After having the task of protecting Clementine in the first five episodes, now Clementine must learn to protect herself, leading to you seeing the evolution of an already beloved character. Many mediums struggle to portray children well, especially as a lead, but Clementine is extremely well written once again to the point where she can continue to break your heart all over again when you see the pain she has to go through.
Episode 1 of Season Two does have a lot of parallels to the first season with a protagonist out on their own, but eventually meeting other characters that you don’t know if you can trust or not. It does feel like a little bit of a retread at times, but it differentiates itself enough most of the time with some interesting new characters and their interactions with Clementine. Also, seeing this experience from a child’s point of view, especially at some really disturbing moments, is worth seeing in of itself.
Similar to games like the Mass Effect franchise, the choices you made in Season One will carry over to Season Two if you so choose. It isn’t a requirement to have played the first season, but it is highly recommended to get the full experience where your decisions have even more weight. Be prepared to make the tough decisions once again as you can choose to make Clementine manipulative or upfront with the other characters you come across.The Walking Dead: Season Two -- Episode 1 Review,