The Walking Dead: Episode 2 – Starved For Help Review
Starved for Help hard to classify as a videogame. It’s not quite that, but it’s also not quite a dramatic tv show, not quite a horror experience, and not quite the comic book. It is all of these things.
The game opens with you as protagonist Lee Everett driving an axe into a zombies skull. Gruesome stuff and even worse he was eating a rabbit, what could of been a meager but needed meal for you and your band of survivors. Where the first episode of this five part series by Telltale Games focused on finding safety, this title revolves around trust and finding food. It has been three months since the end of episode one where Lee Everett, the young Clementine that has become a daughter figure and the other survivors have been holed up in a motor inn. Food is scarce, the survivors have different ideas on the next move and tensions are mounting.
The zombie menace is always lurking in the background but the tense, edge of your seat moments will come from the interactions with other humans. You will come across two brothers and their mother. They offer you shelter on their dairy farm (oh no, not another farm!) that only has one cow on it’s last legs. You will learn that there are also bandits out there who relish in the fact that the land in now lawless. The focus on this game will be the decisions you make and how the other survivors will view you when you make them.
As Lee Everett there is mounting pressure on your conversations and decisions and how they affect the group. Lilly and Kenny, two survivors in your group have very different opinions on how to move forward. The game does remember your choice from the first episode as Lilly, Kenny and others will look to you and your guidance in confidence. Fortunately with all the pressure, there really is not any wrong or right answers; just what you feel is. The game does a great job of creating these tense scenarios and letting you put yourself into them if you like. I was mostly neutral with a focus on Clementine’s well being. Although some instinctual, heat of the moment decisions I made did make her look at me in a different light.
The game plays just like the first episode. It is a point click adventure, that has quick time events and timed dialogue choices. The areas you are given to explore are fairly limited in their size and there is a bit of trial and error when playing with your options. It is a fairly easy experience. Look at a lock, notice that it can be loosened with screws, which should mean find a screwdriver, which should be in the toolbox. The majority of the game is all very logical point a to point b steps. The challenge and excitement comes from the human interaction and tense moments. It manages to make what would be a seemingly wholesome family dinner into a harrowing experience.
Starved for Help like A New Day is hard for me to classify as a videogame. It’s not quite that, but it’s also not quite a dramatic tv show, not quite a horror experience, and not quite the comic book. It is all of these things. The best description that I can say for it is interactive dramatic experience. I am not sure if that is something that would appeal to you but it is something that I would recommend. It is something that fits perfectly into the Walking Dead universe. For five dollars an episode, the cost of trying it out is well worth it. I should note that the game would stutter at times, although very brief, maybe three seconds at the longest instance, it would take me out of the experience. Other than that, the game was technically sound.