Following the stories of five different survivors, The Walking Dead: 400 Days is looking to bridge the gap between the critically acclaimed first season of Telltale’s point-and-click zombie adventure and the inevitable Season Two. It’s short but juicy, and it’s clear that Telltale is trying out some different mechanics to make your decisions tougher and have an even greater impact once the second season rolls out.
Unlike the first season, 400 Days follows five different survivors, each in possession of a playable section lasting about 15-20 minutes, bringing the whole experience to a close in a mere 90 minutes. This is short even compared to the episodes of Season One, which usually lasted around two hours. However, Telltale’s top notch writing is back and better than ever, making you feel an instant connection to all the characters in a very short amount of time.
Gamers who’ve played the first season will feel right at home; nothing has changed in-game, you can move around using WASD and the arrow keys, you click to interact with people and objects, and conversations still usually have a timer at the bottom to make you think fast and to keep the dialogue believable.
All five characters have very different hopes and motivations which you will help shape in 400 Days. Do you want Shel to protect her little sister from the horrors of what the world has become, or do you want to open her eyes and show her how it really is? Do you want Russel to remain a sensitive and caring person or would you rather watch him change as he breaks his morals and ideals? Once again, there is no right or wrong, there is no black or white, every choice matters and every choice will have a consequence – even if you won’t see those unfold in this episode.
I don’t know if I made Vince do the right thing on the prison bus, as it didn’t seem to affect the story in this episode. However, I don’t know if my actions will come back to haunt me in the later seasons. They might or might not, but it’s safe to say the thought still scares me.
One minor complaint I have with the game is that it leaves a lot of questions unanswered. Sure, it effectively creates a solid foundation for the second season to build upon, but it feels as if some characters and events leading up to the unison of our five heroes are quickly scrubbed off or straight-up ignored.
Maybe this is the intent of the writers and we will have our questions answered with the second season, but it would have been nice to see how exactly the five characters you follow meet, as well as find out what happens to the other characters who you meet throughout your travels.