By: Mike Chen
Please note that since each episode of The Walking Dead — A New Frontier features the same graphics engine and control setup, those elements will not be repeated in our reviews for the final four episodes. To read our thoughts on that, refer to our review of Ties That Bind Part I.
The first episode of The Walking Dead: A New Frontier ended in a combination of tragedy and cliffhanger, and Ties That Bind Part II opens up with the aftermath of your choice. Like everything in any The Walking Dead media, things go wrong, and they go wrong spectacularly, leaving your group in peril.
At the heart of this is the growing bond between Javi and Clementine, along with the fragile community of Prescott and the emerging threat of the antagonist group, who appear to be as in control of the region as the Saviors from the TV show/comic book.
There’s also a significant appearance by a TV/comic fan favorite, voiced by everyone’s favorite Mass Effect BFF Brandon Keener (Garrus). While this adds some high-five moments, it doesn’t deviate Telltale’s new series from falling into the repeated franchise tropes of “People are really, really, really bad” and “Angry dudes with guns can never be reasonable.”
Perhaps that’s the core message of any post-apocalyptic media, but it would be nice to get a refreshing take that’s somewhere between happy and insanely violent.
Ties That Bind Part II ends on two fairly major twists, though, and it at least sets the stage for the third episode to challenge those tropes. We’ll see what happens.
Ties That Bind Part II continues the series’ tradition of things going from bad to worse quickly. This works in the moment but feels tiring after the fact, making for a mixed experience. A cliffhanger ending sets the stage for the critical third episode.