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    THE WALKING DEAD: SEASON TWO Review

    Though I knew it was inevitable, I don’t think The Walking Dead needed a second season. The first season, which I’m going to assume you’ve already played, was a brilliantly told and perfectly self contained story with a punch in the gut ending that left you reeling for hours afterward. How do you top that? Where do you even begin?


    BAD AND WORSE
    Like Season One, Season Two is a horribly bleak coming-of-age story about the young and improbably resourceful Clementine, now promoted to protagonist. Shepherded by Lee into self-sufficient adolescence, Clem’s endeavours to carve out a life for herself in the zombie ravaged wasteland are beset with crushing adversity and heartbreak. How she responds to that adversity how you make her respond defines her identity.

    What kind of person is Clementine?
    What kind of person could she be, in these circumstances? Hard choices are a way of life in this world. The format perfected in Season One in which each episode culminates in some horrible life or death dilemma remains intact, and each is about as heart-wrenching and paralysing as you’d expect. It’s a testament to the quality of the writing that there were times when I froze in front of my keyboard, unable and unwilling to choose between two equally horrible outcomes.

    However, perhaps owing to the departure of designer/writer Sean Vanaman, the dialogue in Season Two is a little bit uneven compared with its predecessor, with certain secondary characters coming across and inauthentic and slightly gimmicky. That said, there are some stand-outs: Clementine is again brilliantly written and acted, as are a few of her newfound companions especially Kate,
    who’s pretty much my favourite character in the series now.

    Quicktime puzzles are again featured prominently and are again used as a clever pacing mechanism, injecting a bit of adrenaline into the otherwise fairly staid process of talking to people and searching the environment for clues. Speaking of which, puzzle difficulty has been dialed down significantly, which I think is a good thing. Let’s be honest: nobody’s playing The Walking Dead for the inventory puzzles.

    CLEMENTINE IS AGAIN BRILLIANTLY WRITTEN AND ACTED, AS ARE A FEW OF HER NEW COMPANIONS

    Season Two of The Walking Dead was never going to have the same impact of Season One, but I’m glad that it exists. Though the formula is becoming stale and sometimes comes dangerously close to self-parody, this is still a thoroughly absorbing way to kill ten hours.

    As for whether there should be a Season Three, well… I can’t help but think it’s a case of diminishing returns at this point. I’m happy to be proven wrong, though.

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