Since the third episode will be released tomorrow, I continued my playthrough of The Walking Dead: A New Frontier with episode two – aptly titled “Ties That Binds Us – Part Two.” And boy wasn’t that one kicker of an episode.
Again, spoilers for those who haven’t finished the episode are ahead. So wander down at your own risk.
What’s great about this season of The Walking Dead is how it fleshes out the past of Javier as well as filling in the gaps with Clementine. In the beginning of the episode, we see how fragile the relationship between Kate and David is. And then we go back into the present with Clem and Javi who have to bury Marianna.
The game escalates with more compromising decisions to be made as Javi and more fates to be decided upon. I will note that my prediction of Francine’s death (with the help of a little googling of ‘Dead Man’s Hand’) was correct though this came at a large cost as Conrad becomes unhinged due to his loss.
We encounter a new (or familiar, depending if you’ve read/watched the comics/show) face, lose some and reunite with those presumed lost. Though it’s fast-paced, the episode doesn’t feel like it drags anywhere and constantly forces players to make crucial decisions that toy with the fates of others.
One highlight that I will note is the interaction between Clem and Gabe. Yes, I noted this out in my previous review and I’m so happy that this came to fruition in this episode. Even though their interaction is brief, I can’t wait to see how this develops in future episodes.
I can’t say it enough but the game stands out from its predecessors because of how cinematic it looks. Stylistically, the game remains consistent with previous versions however, it’s the subtle changes that the developers have made that make all the difference. While there are some small hiccups with the execution of certain cinematic moments, it’s a great improvement to the game that I never realised it needed.
Like I said in my review of the previous episode, it feels like the game is playing on your affection with Clementine – that is, if you’ve played the previous seasons. And this is clearly evident when you look at some of the stats when you finish the episode. Major decisions that involve Clementine’s fate often have the majority siding with Clem. I can’t help but side with Clem though, it’d be interesting to see these decisions be made by someone who’s never played the game before.
Overall, this episode builds up some necessary tension between all the characters and sets up many more to come in future episodes. Even though the episodes seem much shorter, it gives a big impact and leaves me wanting more.
Luckily, with episode three around the corner, I won’t be waiting for long.