The Walking Dead: Season Two utilizes the gameplay style found in the first season, but with a few tweaks. The interface has been changed a bit as rather than show the four directions with what looks like a d-pad as before, now it just is a circle with the logos showing up when you should press the respective buttons. Also changing is the look of the fast button presses that you will be doing a good bit, especially during attacks by walkers.
The game also adds in a couple gameplay mechanics to the mix this time around. The first of these is the ability to quickly dodge enemies by moving the left analog stick in the direction it asks, which makes these sequences a lot more intense. The other new mechanic occurs while investigating items in the game. In these you have to hold down the specific button, and then press the analog stick in the direction it asks, such as when using a lighter on some paper to keep a fire lit. This one isn’t quite as exciting as the other new gameplay mechanic, but it is a useful enough addition.
In what seems to be Telltale’s weakest element of their games, Episode 1 of Season Two has a good number of technical glitches and hiccups. The worst of these seem to be during the cutscenes, especially during the “Next Time On The Walking Dead” segment. This plagued the original season as well as their other series The Wolf Among Us, and this one is no different. The movement of Clementine also feels quite stiff most of the time and it isn’t helped by the awkward transitions between areas of the game that often bring drops in the frame rate.
Season Two does not hold back, needless to say, with the Mature rating that the game received. Episode 1 even holds the most disturbing and gross moment of the series thus far to me personally. Whatever you do, do not eat anything when playing near the end of the first episode, as there is one sequence that is not for anyone with a weak stomach. I actually felt that this sequence may have taken it too far with the combination of the visuals and audio.
While some elements of the story feel like a bit of a retread, The Walking Dead: Season Two starts off with a bang as you take control of Clementine for the first time. Many of the decisions you make will decide your path in this game once again, as you come across other human characters and the always creepy walkers. The gameplay is what you expect from the series, but has a few new additions to the interface as well as two new gameplay mechanics that help to shake up the nearly two hour experience. The Walking Dead: Season Two is off to a great start with a faithful follow-up to the first season that will make the wait for Episode 2 all the harder.
[Editor’s Note: The Walking Dead: Season 2 — Episode 1: All That Remains was reviewed on the Xbox 360 platform. The game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]The Walking Dead: Season Two -- Episode 1 Review,