The Walking Dead – “No Time Left” (Episode Five)
It’s finally here! The last episode of this particular video game series is upon us, and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. As I explained in the review of episode one, all future reviews (including this one) will be a plot summary with my thoughts added in as I go. There will be spoilers, so do not read any further if you want to experience this episode for yourself.
There is a non-spoiler review in episode one, in case you’re interested in buying the game and want more information, located here:
Editor’s Note: This game is pretty graphic and describing the plot requires me to be so as well. If you are squeamish, then reading the following would not be a good idea. You’ve been warned.
So, Lee’s been infected and Clementine has been kidnapped by a mysterious man. While waiting for this game to come out, I thought about all of the characters I’ve seen in the previous episodes and wondered if the bandits had something to do with this. That lady who was stalking Clementine in episode two was a bit Coo Coo Ca Choo and I have to wonder if there was more bandits involved than just her. Then there is Vernon, who offered to take Clementine off of Lee’s hands, but you’d think Clementine would recognize Vernon’s voice when they met and say something to Lee about it. I don’t believe Vernon took Clementine, though I have to wonder why he left in the first place. Perhaps he saw the kidnapping and went after her?
The game starts where episode four left off with Lee arguing with Clementine’s captor over the walkie-talkie. We quickly learn that the zombies that were following the train we arrived on finally showed up in Savannah and quickly storm Vernon’s old hideout. In my game, I had all of the remaining survivors with me (Kenny, Ben, Omid, and Christa). They hold off the zombies while I look for a way out, though I collapse as a result of the bite. I am forced to make a decision when I come to, with Kenny threatening to cut off my arm in the hopes of stopping the infection. I chose to stop him from doing it, already figuring that the infection had already spread throughout my body via my bloodstream.
We manage to escape up a shaft, though I apparently black out again mid-climb. Somehow, I managed to stay on the ladder and with Christa’s constant urging, manage to pull myself up to the roof of the building along with the others. So far, there weren’t any puzzles worth mentioning…mainly find one object and make it interact with another to proceed. In this case, I used a ladder to get to a bell tower, rang the bell, and distracted the zombies to it while we made our escape.
Back at the manor that we made a base of operations of in episode four, we discovered the boat missing. Upon further inspection, Vernon left a note indicating that he and his group had taken it. I was disappointed that Vernon, a doctor, would do something like that, but it didn’t surprise me. Those people had been staving off a nutty mercenary group and the walkers for a while and obviously had enough…not that we hadn’t. With out escape plan ruined, we chose to focus on getting Clementine back before worrying about what to do next.
Kenny was still treating Ben like dirt, the former being upset over the latter’s decision to help the bandits in episode three which ultimately served to kill Katjaa and Duck. Ben flips out on Kenny once and for all, making Kenny realize that Ben had also been suffering regarding the unknown state of his own family. They make peace, but the shouting attracted the attention of a large horde of walkers. The group makes a tense stand in the house and is forced to retreat to the attic. Once we find a way out, we make our way from rooftop to rooftop.
Things were going well until a balcony failed, plunging Ben down an estimated four stories and into an alleyway. Kenny and I go to help him, but quickly learn that he had been impaled through the stomach with zombies on the way. In a very sad scene, Kenny pushes me behind a locked gate and stays with Ben. Kenny uses the last bullet in his gun to end Ben’s misery and eventually succumbs to the horde himself. I didn’t know how to react, except that I was extremely sad to see both of them die off the way they did. Kenny had been such an integral part of the story through and through, and Ben deserved much better despite him screwing up all the time.
As Omid, Christa, and I approach the hotel where Clementine is being held, we get separated. I instruct them to meet Clementine and I at the train, which left me with the task of rescuing Clementine alone. Having already been bitten and on my last leg, I understood why Lee decided to just make a direct assault at the hotel from there through a crapton of zombies. With a meat cleaver and a shard of glass, I am treated to Lee going on a killing spree of sorts as he fights his way to the hotel.
After arriving, I finally meet Clementine’s kidnapper in a hotel room and its verified that Clementine is still alive. I learn that this man was the owner of the station wagon from episode two, the one that contained the supplies we took. I figured that would come back to haunt me later, but what’s done was done. After a tense conversation and a struggle, I’m reunited with Clementine and we make our way back out of the hotel.
Covered in zombie guts to stay concealed, we make our way through the crowd of zombies and away from the hotel. Sadly, Clementine sees her zombified mother and freezes just as I pass out again. I was somewhat relieved to know what finally became of Clementine’s parents, but I was saddened to find out that Clementine would be without someone to look out for her once I was gone. I eventually come to…apparently Clementine had pulled me in a semi-awake state into some kind of store.
It’s here that Lee sees Clementine for the last time and it’s a painful scene to watch. After some words of wisdom and heartfelt farewells, Clementine leaves an almost dead Lee chained to a radiator. While the game ended this way, a scene played after the credits that indicated that Clementine was alive, strolling along on some sort of hillside. She spots two silhouettes in the distance, but is unsure if she should call out to them. Could this be a teaser for season two?
Overall, this episode was indeed a tear-jerker and I was sorry to see it end. I sat there after the episode ended and just stared at the credits, needing the time to collect my thoughts and process what I had seen. With that said, I want more! Thankfully, it sounds like Telltale may be making another “Walking Dead” video game series…I can only hope that it comes soon. There’s no word as to what characters will be in “season two”, but I have a feeling I’ll enjoy whoever they conjure up for the story.
The game as a whole is a wonderful rollercoaster ride, one that I’m glad I jumped onto early on. I’ve never read the comics nor have I seen the show on television, but now I want to. The character development and the drama throughout the five episodes were fantastic and I can’t compliment the writers enough for keeping me engaged from start to finish. The folks at Telltale are extremely talented and I hope the same writers are involved when they create the story for season two.
The statistics at the end of each episode was a nice touch. It was interesting to see what my fellow Walking Dead players chose during certain parts of the game. It shows that Telltale was successful in giving us various moral choices to really consider when the time came. What’s more, both choices when presented with one could rationalized in different ways. For example, choosing to shoot Duck to spare Kenny from doing it (something I did), in my opinion, saved a father the sad duty of doing in his own son. At the same time however, it could be rationalized that Kenny would be better off doing it on his own so that he could feel a sense of closure. No matter how you look at it, it’s a touch choice.
Having written my non-spoiler review in episode’s one article, I looked back at it to see if I’d change anything now that I’ve played all five episodes. I do agree with most of it, though saving one character over another seemed pointless (Carley / Doug) since the survivor of the two was going to be knocked off in a later episode anyway. I would have liked to have seen one or the other persist to the end, but this is a minor complaint. “The Walking Dead” is proud of the fact that characters come and go all the time, and the video game isn’t afraid to reflect that. I can only imagine how many others like myself were angry over Carley’s death.
Whether you like a good story or have a fetish for all things zombie, you’d do well to pick up this game. Seriously, go buy it. Now. Chances are, you won’t be disappointed.
Final Verdict: 9/10