|Platform||360, PS3, PC, iOS, Vita|
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400 Days is a DLC episode for Telltale’s Walking Dead adventure game designed to serve as a bridge between the first season, which wrapped up in November, and the second, hitting later this year. The episode actually unfolds as a series of five character-focused vignettes designed to be played in any order.
I definitely count myself among the fans of Telltale’s pitch-perfect adaptation of The Walking Dead, so I was excited to see what they’d do with 400 Days, and after my brief taste, I’d say things are looking good. It’s nice to see them playing around with the formula so confidently in the wake of the critical praise the first season received. It would’ve been easy to just keep churning out new episodes that hit all the same beats, but the team is clearly intent on mixing things up before they’ve gotten stale—kind of a novel concept in the world of gaming. And I really appreciate 400 Days‘ approach of offering brief windows into the life of five different survivors at various points after the outbreak, all connected by a common setting.
Unfortunately, some of the game’s technical shortcomings don’t appear to have been remedied in the six months Telltale has had to plot out Season 2 and get 400 Days ready for launch. During the demo I saw, everything hitched and chugged at a couple points, and some of the facial animations were still way too over the top—just about the only two things that pulled me out of the game during the first season. I’m sure 400 Days will still do a solid job pushing the franchise forward, but I’d really hoped the success of Season One would allow Telltale to sort out all of the polish issues the next time they tackled The Walking Dead.