TellTale Games’ The Walking Dead (A New Frontier): Season 3/ Episode 2 “Ties That Bind (Part 2)” – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)

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Overview

Life and death decisions continue as the game begins to test your loyalty to certain people.

Play Through Time

1 Hour and 7 Minutes

Storyline

Who, or what, are you willing to sacrifice to save your own family? Will you let a town be destroyed just to protect your own neck? Despite what you have seen, and what has been done to you, be it Javier or Clementine, will you continue to trust strangers? Yeah, they seem like good people, but those make the best thieves and murders. The kind that can lure unsuspecting folk into a trap and then they get stripped of any weapons and supplies. Leaving you to only hope that afterwards they’ll just send you back into the wilderness. Because, lord knows, assuming after everything that has happened you still have faith, that while there maybe safety in numbers, such can’t be said when you aren’t trusted with a weapon.

On The Fence

Two Episodes Back to Back May Not Have Been The Best Idea

Ok, do I like how TellTale makes you wait a whole month for what is essentially an hour, maybe more, game? No. However, I must admit, playing this and episode 1 back to back, it kind of kills the vibe. What I mean is, while the story remains wonderful, your part in it, making decisions and actually interacting with characters, it just sort of seems meaningless. Like, a few times in the episode you can decide to sacrifice Javier or Clementine and those are the major decisions. In those moments, you feel like you are actually playing a game. The rest of the time it is like when movies like Star Wars: Rogue One have an explosion or shoot out. It is to remind you this is supposed to be real and you should be engaged. Yet, I think when you go from one episode to the next, those feelings of anxiety dissipate because you get settled. You know what is going to come since this franchise is now 3 seasons deep and even if there are new characters, you know that 9/10 trusting people will bite you in the ass more than be your salvation. Plus it is rare for you to be punished for being too careful.

To the point, it makes it so taking control of Javier rather than Clementine seems like it might have been a mistake. For while, in episode one, it does remind you that humanity, love, and community did once exist, at the same time we are used to that. The seasons and spin-offs, before this season, have been focused on working within a community. So taking away that ability to continue Clementine’s story, but now as someone alone, trying to take care of a kid, and mistrusting, I feel robbed us in a way. For while you are given slivers of her life before meeting Javi, it almost feels like they didn’t know how to handle the idea of what happened to Clementine since season 2 so they decided to build a story around a new character instead.

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