By: Mike Chen
For both the graphic novel and TV show, Michonne is a fan favorite character in The Walking Dead universe. Now, she stars in her own three-episode mini-series through TellTale Games (which, if you didn’t know, lives as canon in the comic book universe).
While TWD: Michonne seems to use an upgraded form of the TellTale engine (more on that below), its controls are essentially the same as any other previous adventure, be it The Walking Dead, The Wolf Among Us, or Tales From The Borderlands.
You’re still handling quick-time events and dialogue decisions, along with some cursory movement. TWD: Michonne doesn’t have any true action sequences, so while there is some stylized button-pushing for zombie kills, nothing will truly test your twitch abilities.
TWD: Michonne looks very similar to the previous Walking Dead series, so it’s basically a comic book come to life. The voice actor cast for her feels like she’s touching on the performance from the TV show, though still distinctly her own. Other supporting voice actors are strong, particularly Bertha in the second half.
As this is an upgraded TellTale engine the graphics remain on par, but the animation is a lot smoother, particularly in any areas where the environment scrolls. This is most noticeable in the beginning while exploring a boat — the camera’s rotation is far better than any previous TellTale effort.
For those of you who only know Michonne from the TV show, this series takes place later with events having unfolded somewhat differently. It’s still the same character, though, and the writers nailed her mix of stoicism and warmth.
TellTale games are generally judged on how involving they are. TWD: Michonne soars in that regard, with stakes established right away and hard choices left and right. Even if your only exposure to The Walking Dead universe is through TellTale’s series rather than the comics or show (thus, you wouldn’t know who Michonne is), it’s very easy to connect with her and understand where she’s coming from. However, those who have connected with her through other material will simply delight in deep-diving with a fan-favorite character.
In terms of gameplay, the whole episode clocked in at just under two hours for me. TellTale episodes usually feel quick, but the pacing on this one was so intense, I swore I’d only sat down 30 minutes ago. It’s an excellent ride filled with tension and humanity.
The Walking Dead: Michonne experiences some of the same technical issues as other TellTale games but offers a well-written and well-paced take on the horror genre. For fans of the comic book or TV show, add a quarter point to the score, as this is a must-play.