Author Topic: The Walking Dead: Michonne – February 2016 [Score: 7.1]  (Read 35 times)

Offline bobdog

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The Walking Dead: Michonne – February 2016 [Score: 7.1]
« on: October 08, 2018, 09:30:16 AM »
In honor of the impending death of Telltale Games, I present this review. I’ve played most of Telltale Games’ entries starting with The Walking Dead, which I gave a perfect score, and most have been very good to excellent “stories”, but have faltered as “games.” Unfortunately, The Walking Dead: Michonne is my least-liked of the new crop.

Michonne follows the title character through a shortened 3-episode jaunt in The Walking Dead universe. Each episode is also shorter than other Telltale titles. Because of this, you really never get to know any of the characters in any meaningful way. I just played the original TWD title for comparison, and in that one, I did everything I could to ensure that Clementine was safe. As Lee, I got to know the quirks and foibles of especially Kenny, but also Doug, Glenn, Lilly, Ben, Christa, Omid and many others. In Michonne, there’s a bad lady named Norma, and a girl named Sam and … a bunch of cannon fodder.

Michonne attempts to make us feel something for these others, but from the first scene, we are introduced to a bad-ass lady who has no problem killing zombies. And unfortunately, because her daughters are dead, she also has no reason to live. So I spent the rest of the game essentially playing a Chaotic Neutral character: if it didn’t impact me directly, I generally didn’t care. I’d throw people under the bus, say whatever I felt like, and generally court death every chance I could.

When you play as such a character, there’s really no need to get to know anyone else, because they’re all going to get killed soon anyway – either by me or by the zombies. And those that sacrificed themselves for me, I didn’t really care, because I was just going to walk on afterward. So no real character development to Michonne, although she does reach some closure by game’s end.

One huge gripe: the technical side of the game was really poorly optimized. I read forum after forum entries about how people couldn’t get the game to set itself in 1920x1080 widescreen mode, or to get out of windowed mode. I encountered this several times, so the only suggestion was to Alt-Enter and put it back in windowed mode of 1600x1200. This of course stretched out the images incorrectly, and the window frame was of course obnoxious. Toss huge load times into the mix, and I got the feeling that the game just wasn’t built correctly.

The other gripe I has was with the new “interactive” mechanism. You had to mouse over an area, and then it would give you 1 to 3 options, like “Look”, “Talk”, “Open”, etc. This was extremely clunky, especially since the original game seemed so smooth in how you interacted with everything.

Overall, even though Michonne was much more active than other Telltale Games I’ve played, I just don’t know if I’d recommend it other than on a deep sale, and if you’re a real fan of the show. 7.1 out of 10

Offline Starfox

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Re: The Walking Dead: Michonne – February 2016 [Score: 7.1]
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2018, 09:45:31 AM »
It's a shame for Telltales though... They have great products... The Sam & Max series was hilariously fun. I loved their take on Borderlands with Tales of the Borderlands, I had a great kick playing Wolf Among Us. However I think their problem was A) that they were relying far too much on others' IP and not enough on their own ideas. When the studio will finally close, they will have produced 5 Walking Dead games... Five (6 even counting the 400 days DLC)!!  What was the point? They're not Activision crapping a new Call of Duty game every year for God sake! What was needed was diversity and novelty if possible and those past years were far from that. B) They took on so many licensed projects that they ended up killing themselves slowly. It's no secret that the working conditions at Telltales were far from optimal with an unending "crunch time" (while in other companies crunch time mostly takes place during the weeks preceding release). As the French saying goes "qui trop embrasse mal étreint" or very roughly translated -- I'm translating the idea rather than the words here -- "By embracing too much one ends up holding nothing".

But in any case here's another developer with great potential that goes down the drain. It's always sad.


Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein

Offline bobdog

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Re: The Walking Dead: Michonne – February 2016 [Score: 7.1]
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2018, 09:25:38 PM »
I can only imagine a lot of their costs went to simple licensing fees. And with 6 or 7 IPs they were working on with 5 episodes each, they'd never have a chance to breathe. TWD was amazing. Wolf Among Us was too. I initially didn't want to play Borderlands, and then loved it and thought it was their funniest effort yet. And Game of Thrones was a perfect match for the nebulous gray area that their games encompassed.

I haven't played Batman yet, but will soon. And I'm interested to see what their interpretation of Guardians of the Galaxy might be. But I absolutely refuse to play Minecraft.

Sadly, the technical side did not keep up with the stories, and Michonne was maybe the worst offender I've yet played.

Offline Doc_Brown

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Re: The Walking Dead: Michonne – February 2016 [Score: 7.1]
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2018, 05:22:20 PM »
I haven't played Batman yet, but will soon.

Season 1 of Telltale's Batman starts out so promisingly, but by the end of episode 2 makes one of the same mistakes Batman: Arkham Knight did and never really recovers.  I just bought Season 2 when I heard Telltale was shutting down, so I'll let you know if it's any better when I eventually get around to it (gotta knock out Assassin's Creed Origins and Middle-earth: Shadow of War first). 

For what it's worth, my favorite Telltale games have been The Wolf Among Us and Tales from the Borderlands.
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