Episode 4 continues directly where the last one left off, with the survivors making it o a new town in search of a boat. Lee and the gang soon find out that the town is mostly abandoned, save for someone that feels the need to alert Walkers by ringing a church bell. In fear of their lives they soon find themselves at an abandoned house, which they use as a base to search for a way out of town. It doesn’t take long before they discover someone is stalking them. Their only choice is to either find a way out of their predicament, or find the people who have been keeping an eye on them.
Game play wise this is definitely the most scaled back of the 4 titles. The puzzle direction is less focused, and the opening portions of the title feel as if Lee is just wandering around aimlessly. Once the fecal matter hits the fan, the game picks up a bit more allowing for some traversing of a sewer and a town full of the brain eaters we’ve all come to know and love.
The story is all over the place this time around, with Clementine becoming more of the focus for Lee’s movements. Kenny is still struggling with the events of episode 3, and it’s obvious that he’s on the verge of losing it. Ben is a worthless piece of crap and continues to make trouble for the group. The others are hanging onto coat tails of Lee and Kenny, with hopes of them finding a way to get them out of this turmoil. Lee and the group do encounter some new survivors, which leads to a horrifying climax that you’ll have to see yourself.
Basically, this new town scales back what makes “The Walking Dead” appealing. It isn’t a deal breaker in anyway, but it advances the story more as filler than something intricate. It appears that the design decision was to unsurprisingly kill off characters in the most “I knew it” way possible. There is little shock to the deaths in this episode; virtually everyone you think is going to die is probably going to shuffle off this mortal coil. It nearly seems like they wasted characters that were interesting, just to slaughter them in the name of murder.
The one redeeming factor of the new episode is the building climbing bad ass, Molly. She takes no prisoners and kicks major ass straight out of the box. She remains a mysterious character as she comes and goes as quickly as a breeze. Her appearance almost alludes to her return in the next season of The Walking Dead. It’s disheartening to see her leave, because I would have enjoyed seeing her as the Michonne of Lee’s group.
As I said earlier, this isn’t the best in the series or the most impressive. In a “What if?” scenario, I think I would have preferred the town to actually be full of people. So players could once again deal with the always changing human element. Unfortunately, we were given a more un-fulfilling sequence of events with a cliff-hanger ending. Half-Ass Gaming gives The Walking Dead Episode 4 a C+, this is the lowest bar so far in the series and hopefully the finale can make up for it.