By: Mike Chen
TellTale gave The Walking Dead fans quite a treat with the first episode of its Michonne-based miniseries. As something that appealed equally to fans of the show, comic and game (which exists in the comic’s continuity), it gave us a look at a previously unexplored time in the character’s history.
The previous episode left off on a cliffhanger, and Give No Shelter picks up right where things left off. There are immediate decisions to make, though it’s clear that the game is funneling you through a journey.
Unfortunately, this relatively short episode doesn’t do much else. Unlike the first Michonne episode, which gave a wide variety of characters and situations to work through, this feels like the first two acts of an episode, perhaps even just the first half. It’s not just pacing, either, as the gameplay total is very short — I finished in just a little over an hour.
TellTale games are usually 2-3 hour chunks, and given the point where the episode ends, it feels like there could easily be more story to fit into this episode. Other than one particularly emotionally difficult sequence involving improvised surgery (this gave me the same level of tension as Heavy Rain‘s infamous finger decision), you’ve seen and done a lot of this before, and while one flashback segment provides a little more insight into Michonne’s character, there’s actually very little to do in it.
That kind of summarizes the whole episode. It’s enjoyable without necessarily pushing the story or character too far forward. With such a short run time, it definitely feels like something’s missing.
TellTale follows up the excellent first Michonne episode with a short and by-the-numbers The Walking Dead experience in Give No Shelter. Let’s hope they return to form for the miniseries’ finale.