The Walking Dead - The Walking Dead: Season 2 - Episode 1: All That Remains
A few concerns just popped into my head, this will probably end up being a very long-winded post. Anyway... let's see how it goes.
I'll just quickly throw it out, I really enjoyed "All That Remains" playing as Clementine was thrilling and her struggles against her enemies was spectacular. She's a brilliant lead protagonist for this Season and I can't wait to see where her character goes from this point onwards.
Anyway, here comes the concerns... I myself was pretty surprised at the time the Episode wasn't as well received by the fans or critics as I would have hoped/expected. Yes granted, there was legitimate cons. The new characters didn't get as well known as the ones from the first Season(which is to be expected since you only met them over half way through the episode). But I don't really agree with that one, I knew everyone's names before the Episode ended even. Which I myself was surprised about since I'm normally terrible with names. The timeskip was another one, although I have a feeling there's going to be a good reason to have one later on this season (Episode 3's banner gives me a good idea). But the one that I'm a tinsy bit worried about is the creative process this series (and The Wolf Among Us thus far) are going through. Let me explain, the first four episodes of Season One had scenarios where you had areas to explore as Lee. Where you could even have optional conversations with characters and learn more about their past. You know, Adventure Game elements in them. The Everett's Drugstore in Macon is a prime example. You could learn Lilly's occupation (Airman) and Carley's story on how she was saved by Doug. Thing is, a majority of these conversations have always been optional. Them ones? I'm not too sure, I've never done a playthrough where I ignore any dialogue. But I'm pretty sure you guys know what I mean.
Since "No Time Left" Telltale have went for a much more cinematic style with their episodes. Having a very linear progression and thus, the episodes feel significantly shorter because of it (one of the criticisms All That Remains had) I LOVED being able to wind down and walk around a good bit, trying to start up the train and seeing everyone sitting down relaxing (or in Katjaa's case, keep her son from turning). It was one of my favorite things in the first Season. And let's not forget when Chuck joins in and plays the guitar. Simply put, there needs to be more Adventure game elements in the episodes to extend the lifespan and interest of replayability when you learn that you completely forgot to talk to that one person and bring up that subject and the like. It was one of my favorite things the first four episodes did. So please Telltale, vary the gameplay in the same way the first Season did. The train puzzle was a simple one that let us catch a breath after what happened to Carley/Doug. And same went for when you had to get Kenny out of the captain's seat to get the map. It all extended playtime and was enjoyable. Lately all we're doing is going there or using a different weapon against a hostile (in both The Wolf Among Us and Season Two). Being able to have optional conversations with people and learn more about them was the key factor of why several people liked (and hated) the cast from Season One, we learned a good bit of their backstory.
And one final thing, I fear that Telltale may want to bring Season Two to be nothing but tears and depression. Yes, it's the Walking Dead. Yes, you're playing as a poor girl who's had to go through so much. But in the end, there needs to be moments where we smile and laugh, to help lighten up the very, very dark world this is. Examples? Clementine's "Salt lick" from Episode 2 and Kenny's "Urban" line that actually happens literally minutes later. Don't get me wrong though, there was some of it. Omid's argument with Christa at the start was pretty funny. "We're not calling our baby Omid one of you is enough." Were things that made me laugh. Omid was great comic relief as well as a likeable character, it's a shame he got killed of so early. But there were the occasional unintentional funny moments too. Like this:
Sorry for the long winded post guys, just wanted to post my concerns. I LOVE Telltale and I've been a fan of their works for over six years. The Walking Dead was a huge accomplishment for them, I just hope that Season Two can live up to the first Season. Because it has the power to. Playing as Clementine will make for a much more greater challenge and test your morals and what you think is the better thing to do, save this person? Or save yourself? Clementine is no longer a moral compass for you. Because you're Clementine and you can bend your morals a good bit more now (blackmailing Rebecca being the prime example). I'm really looking forward to it, and while I do have more concerns (Sean Vanaman and Jake's departure from Telltale with their incredible writing skills) I still have hope for a strong Season ahead.
And yes, I think Kenny's alive. I'm pretty sure Telltale have been paying attention to everyone screaming to have him back.
EDIT: Seems this post is going to go to the bottom pit of the forums now. It was a TL;DR afterall. Oh well, just wanted to state my opinion on the matter.