As with its predecessor, The Walking Dead Season 2 is making its way to the PlayStation Vita. Unlike the first season, however, it’s not waiting until the adventure concludes on consoles to make the jump, which is great news for portable enthusiasts.
Since the game is identical to the ongoing console version, this review will focus only on the control and presentation elements. For a more detailed (yet still spoiler free) analysis of the storyline please refer to our previous reviews of All That Remains and A House Divided by clicking on the appropriate links. Now then, let’s see how the game fares on the Vita.
When I reviewed Season 1 on the handheld I felt that, in many ways, it was more natural to tap dialogue choice while movement was decidedly less enjoyable. Given that Season 2 has cleaned up the interface a bit on consoles the difference is less noticeable this time around. I still prefer it when I’m asked to do something on the fly — like swiping a specific direction to evade a hungry walker — but there’s not a huge difference one way or the other.
Visually, The Walking Dead Season 2 looks very good on the OLED screen. That praise does come with a caveat, though, as the nighttime sections can look really dark (and that doesn’t even take into account the screen dimming that occurs when you’re watching extended sections and not touching it). On a television it’s easier to make out, and you can always tweak the brightness if necessary, but here it can be a little difficult to see.
That proves to be a problem on the audio half as well. Even with the speakers maxed out you lose some of the subtlety in the ambient noise. And while that may not be a big deal, there were times where I had some trouble picking up dialogue, which is a huge part of the game. Obviously, you can work around this by turning on the subtitles, but if you’re like me you tend to focus on those at the expense of watching the characters interact.
Telltale’s The Walking Dead Season 2 remains a great game on the PlayStation Vita, but when you’re straining to see and hear it undermines the presentation. There are better ways to experience the game, though if you lack access don’t hesitate to pick up this version.