The Walking Dead: Season Two – “A House Divided” (Episode Two)
The title says it all in this latest addition to the second season of “The Walking Dead”. Clementine, our delicate but intelligent protagonist from Episode One, has a lot of hard choices to make. Having met a group of survivors that are much more weary of strangers as opposed to those she met in Season One, this stands to reason. On top of that, she doesn’t have Lee to protect her anymore…it’s just her and her will to live. When Episode Two appeared on Steam on March 4, 2014, I was all over it like a kid in a candy store…I just had to know what would become of Clementine and possibly find out what had really happened to Christa. Seeing that the series as a whole is a rather unforgiving and unexpected one, it’s relatively easy to say that anything goes at this point.
I’ve never watched the television series or read the comic books, but I’ve heard people say that “The Walking Dead” is more of a character drama as opposed to a zombie survival story. The more I play the video game adaptation of the comic series, the more I realize this to be true. The second episode does feature zombies here and there, but the true story lies with the living people Clementine comes to know. Part of me wished that there was more “survival” aspects in this series, but the narrative more than makes up for that and doesn’t disappoint.
While Episode Two doesn’t do anything new in terms of gameplay mechanics, a new “REWIND” feature was recently introduced that allows players to go back and try out different decisions to see what would happen. You’ll be able to choose the insertion point, saving you the trouble of having to replay the entire episode from scratch. Just as a word of warning however…while it does save your decisions from BEFORE the insertion point, it will overwrite any decisions you make AFTER and update your save file appropriately. Luckily, you can save the game to an alternate save file so as not to mess up your own personal “canon”.
With regard to this episode, the quick time events didn’t seem to feel as dominating as they did in the first one. There simply aren’t as many, leaving the focus to be primarily on the narrative…something with which this series is certainly known. For the first time this series, we observe some solid references to the first season and the “400 Days” DLC. There’s also a clear antagonist this time around as opposed to the player simply wondering who they could and couldn’t trust. There’s still a degree of mystery behind the characters, but now you have a good idea as to who the bad guys really are.
So as not to spoil the story, I’ll opt to end the review here. I will say however that I enjoyed this episode more than the first. Clementine’s choices felt a bit harder this time around, making predicting the outcomes all the more difficult. I finally began feeling an attachment to the characters, but in true “Walking Dead” fashion, not all will make it. Still, I was very glad to see some familiar faces…I think I’ll just leave it at that. Bottom line…if you haven’t played “The Walking Dead”, be it this season or the first, you’re missing out.
Final Verdict: 8/10
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