HIGH The first series is still so powerful.
LOW The subsequent entries couldn’t maintain that same quality over time.
WTF The 400 Days content is hidden in the Season One menu.
GameCritics has a long history with The Walking Dead. Several of our writers were fans of the comics when that was the IP’s only iteration, and when the TV show hit, we followed along — some because they genuinely liked it, while some treated it as more of a hate-watch.
However, regardless of how we felt about the comics and the television series, the staff were unanimous in their appreciation of Telltale’s videogame treatment of the material — Season One had us dedicating entire podcasts to each episode and the story of Lee, Clementine, Kenny and the rest of the survivors was our Game of the Year.
It was the easiest GOTY we ever picked.
The Telltale Games that skyrocketed to prominence on the strength of that work is no more, and the property has been through a lot of ups and downs in the years since. However, The Walking Dead‘s entire interactive canon has now been collected into one convenient package and it’s a great way for fans to reminisce, or for newcomers to become acquainted with what was a genuine videogame phenomenon.
In terms of this specific package, the collection offers several niceties including a choice of UI.
Players can also choose any series or episode they wish.
There’s now an option called “Graphic Black” which adds a new visual effect meant to echo the art style of the comics.
Players can choose to view character models or conceptual artwork.
Having a music player is always a nice get.
There are also several short features offering developer and voice actor commentary, although they’re not comprehensive to the entire series.
In total this is a nice selection of bonus material, but what about the actual games?
Every single installment of Telltale’s The Walking Dead is present and accounted for in this collection, and GameCritics has reviewed all of them, from the first episode in 2012 to the almost-didn’t-happen conclusion in 2019. For your convenience, those reviews are all presented here, in one place.
THE WALKING DEAD: SEASON ONE
THE WALKING DEAD: 400 DAYS
THE WALKING DEAD: SEASON TWO
THE WALKING DEAD: MICHONNE
THE WALKING DEAD: A NEW FRONTIER
THE WALKING DEAD: THE FINAL SEASON
In total, this is quite a collection that spans the rise and fall of a truly landmark series. The bonus material is a nice addition and the ability to revisit any and all parts of the saga in one place is welcome. I’m tempted to recommend this collection on the strength of the first series alone, but something as complete as this is a no-brainer for anyone who’s a fan of the franchise, of zombie apocalypse stories, or of episodic storytelling in general.
…And yes, seeing Lee again did make me a bit misty-eyed.
Disclosures: The Walking Dead: The Telltale Definitive Series was developed by Telltale Games and Skybound Games and published by Skybound Games. This collection is available on PC, XBO and PS4. This copy of the game was provided by the publisher and reviewed on PS4.
Parents: This series has consistently been rated M from the ESRB for Intense Violence, Blood and Gore and Strong Language. One official ESRB description is as follows: This is an adventure game, based on the Walking Dead TV and comic-book franchise, in which players assume the role of a teenager trying to survive a zombie outbreak. As players progress through the story, they are presented with dialogue and action choices. These selections can lead to the deaths of characters, bloody attacks on humans and/or zombies, and other instances of intense violence: a teenage boy shot in the head; a zombie hit repeatedly in the face until bloody; a character removing buckshot from a young boy’s wound. Players sometimes have the option to kill human captives/enemies or allow them to be eaten by zombies. Blood is frequently depicted, and zombies are sometimes seen with exposed guts and viscera. The words “f**k,” “sh*t,” and “a*shole” appear in the dialogue.
Colorblind Modes: There are no colorblind modes available.
Deaf and Hard of Hearing Gamers: There are subtitles accompanying all spoken dialogue and they can be resized. There are no audio cues necessary for play. This title is fully accessible.
Remappable Controls: The controls are not remappable.