Video game review – The Walking Dead: Michonne (Telltale Games, 2016)

Pitching itself somewhere between a text-based adventure game, interactive movie and a comic book, Telltale’s third instalment of their Walking Dead video game series manages to do just enough to warrant excluding Michonne from the comic for half a year, without really hitting the gripping heights of the two previous releases in the series.

The story, as you may have guessed, centres around Michonne. She is in a forest and contemplating suicide when she is found by a man called Pete, who takes her to his boat and group of survivors nearby. They receive a radio signal from a nearby boat called Mobjack and choose to investigate it.

It’s fairly basic as a plot but therein lies the struggle the game makers had. They couldn’t make a groundbreaking, critical development in the story for one of the comic’s best-loved characters. Doing so would be a disservice to fans of the comic who have been reading for years, especially if not all of them are gamers.

The gameplay is very simple. You have conversations and do some point-and-click tasks in the same style as old fashioned PC adventure games. You then have a limited amount of time to react when asked questions, with the responses remembered by the characters and stored to shape their future attitudes to you.

This is interspersed with some real time event gameplay when you’re being attacked by zombies or people who you’ve managed to annoy along the way.

I enjoyed playing it, but I’m not really sure why. It was extremely easy and extremely short, and probably in hindsight felt like I was reading the comics, just in a different format. If this was published as a comic, it wouldn’t be a particularly interesting read. It’s fun, nice to have, but hardly groundbreaking.

If you can pick it up on the cheap then I’d recommend it for a couple of nights of entertainment, by don’t expect too much of it.

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