Interest in Robert Kirkman’s zombie franchise The Walking Dead has reached dizzying heights of popularity since the AMC adaptation debuted in 2010. The comic series has been going on since 2003, and has since been considered a modern classic within the medium. The television series, going on its third season this fall, is one of the most watched basic cable shows ever, bolstered by its ability to appeal to those outside of fans of the genre (my mom watches it). This is no doubt the result of the increasingly obvious fragile nature of our times, and both the comics and the show are a reflection of the common fears we all share over the possible destabilization or eradication of modern society. People don’t get invested in the comics and the show just to see zombies kill and be killed; they get invested in the characters and their attempt to survive amidst an apocalypse. Such a setting presents the characters with situations that challenge their moral beliefs, and both iterations remain popular because we find it fascinating to watch unfold before our eyes.
Given its rising popularity, unsurprisingly it didn’t take long for the franchise to transfer over to the video game medium. Earlier this year Telltale Games, known for their episodic adventure games, began digitally distributing a 5 episode season of The Walking Dead, a video game series taking place within the same continuity as the comic books. Involving a new and original cast of characters, it tells the story of Lee Everett and his continued attempts to keep his little group of survivors alive while also preserving the innocence of 8 year old Clementine, who was left alone during the ensuing zombie attack. In the role of Lee, the player is forced to make increasingly hard and difficult choices as the lack of societal norms, along with the constant danger of the walkers, continues to threaten to pull them apart.
I downloaded and played the first episode, A New Day, a couple months ago, and it very literally snuck up on me. It didn’t take long for me to be sucked into the story and the plight of the characters, and as soon as I was done with the first episode, I immediately set out to download episode two. Titled Starved For Help, the second episode proceeded to top the first, thrusting Lee into even more morally difficult situations. Just recently Telltale Games released the eagerly awaited third episode, The Long Road Ahead, and upon completing it, it only solidified just how good this game actually is. If you’ve been on the fence up until now, I’m here to help. Here are 5 reasons why you should play Telltale Game’s The Walking Dead.
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This article was first posted on September 14, 2012