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Solution to the 'Brenda Glitch' at the end of Episode 2 (Spoilers)

posted by holeydonut on - last edited - Viewed by 6.3K users

I'm making this thread because I got tired of jokers crapping on the other threads talking about the issue with Brenda at the end of the Second Episode.

Cliff's Notes (for people who TLDR)...

- Many Xbox controllers have a problem where the left analog stick does not "center" itself when you let go of it.

- Even if you are not touching the left joystick, the controller will send a joystick input reading to the Xbox system.

- Telltale must have made the sensitivity of the left stick input very high for this scene with Brenda. They demand that the user be absolutely still to mimic Lee frozen in fear.

- Telltale's QA group did not consider the importance of considering the vast states of wear of their customers' controllers.

- As a result they programmed Episode two so many users cannot pass the scene in the game without a stroke of luck.

- I used an Xbox360 at work, and I was able to get through the "Boss" battle with Brenda with no problems.

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Anyway, for those who can read quickly and have a decent attention span...

If you're not aware of the Brenda Glitch - it's this problem with one of the last scenes in Episode two. Brenda is holding a gun to Katja's head. During this scene Lee must approach Brenda and then immediately stand stationary when Brenda appears startled. This way she does not panic and shoot Lee in the face.

However, the game is programmed in such a manner that the user must stop input on the controller to mimic a "red light freeze" behavior for Lee. The problem is that some Xbox controllers continue to provide joystick input values to the Xbox system even if a user lets go of the controller joysticks.

Because of this, the game believes the user is walking towards Brenda even if they are not intending to do so. The result? Brenda shoots Lee in the face.

Why do I know about these controller issues? It's because I work for one of the largest video game publishers and development studios in the world. I ran the perceived glitch-scenario across some QA guys and they immediately recommended that I try many different controllers to see if the outcome changes.

It seems like it's common knowledge to programmers and QA folks that many used Xbox360 controllers will show wear on the joysticks which results in the controller providing input readings from the joysticks even when the user is not touching the controller. The issue stems from the controllers becoming dirty or worn where the spring mechanism and sensors fall out of alignment.

Sometimes you can "click" the joystick in just before you let go of the controller, and it may help the joystick seat better and return a NULL coordinate value. Of course, the next time you push the joy stick forward and let it go, it may become off-center again.

My suggestion to Telltale is to realize the fact that they designed a game that is predicated on the user's ability to halt input to the Xbox360. Unfortunately they didn't QA the condition that many Xbox360 owners have older controllers that do not function as desired.

Telltale clearly has received user input to identify that it is not simply user error causing players to have difficulty against Brenda.

A simple fix could entail a patch where the game reduces the sensitivity of the stick at this exact scene. Or the code is modified so that a user input pulling back on the left-stick tells the game that the user does not intend to step forward.

For those of you who are having issues - I suggest you ignore the wise-axe comments from most of the users on this forum. Instead, try the following:

- Loading a prior save state will not fix the problem. You have to have your controller behave properly for the scene to be passed. Due to random error of the controller, simply playing the game and interacting with the left-stick may have it working for you at just the right time. I believe this is why some users can get past the scene with a reload. Their controllers were simply working well when they returned to the important scene.

- Try a different controller or play on your Friend's Xbox360. Or have your friend bring over some of their controllers and keep swapping them until you can find one that gets you past this scene.

- A trick to help will be to roll the left stick in 360 circles and click the stick in right when Lee opens the screen door. When you are inching towards Brenda click the stick in right before you let it go. Hopefully it seats the joystick just long enough for the game to let you pass.

- If you really really want to see your controller's joystick status (and you don't have an Xbox 360 dev-kit) you can get one of these receivers for a PC. It lets you use the Xbox controller as a PC gamepad. Within the enclosed software is a calibration tool so you can see the readings of the two joysticks even if placed in a neutral position. It's interesting that they are always sending readings back even if you are not touching them.
Xbox 360 Wireless Gaming Receiver for Windows
http://www.amazon.com/Xbox-360-Wireless-Gaming-Receiver-Windows/dp/B000HZFCT2

19 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • This is a nice long thread explaining something that isn't the issue. I had the glitch and it was nothing to do with my controller, i know this because it let me walk, stop and talk the first two stages and then the next time i stopped, she talked, i stopped, she shot with no option to talk. It's a glitch. I fixed it by rewinding and picking a couple of different options, my controller is fine.

  • I'm not saying your controller is broken, I'm saying that your controller may return small amounts of joystick input to the game even when you're not touching the left stick.

    Of course, if you push the left stick forward then the controller communicates a max-movement along the Y-axis. If your controller were completely busted I doubt you could play any games with it.

    You may have this problem in The Walking Dead or any other game... it's just the particular issue exasperates itself with the Brenda scene since it is a novel game mechanic with its "red light freeze".

    If you've ever played Call of Duty, or Plants vs Zombies, or anything - keep cognizant of a time that you've let go of the left joystick but your cursor or player moves a bit anyway.

    If you've ever had a problem of undesired movement then you will have a problem with the Brenda Scene.

  • Its not an issue with the controller as PC users are experiencing the same glitch. Its an issue with over sensivity on that scene, as a single quick tap in the forward key will be enough to get shot in the face.

  • lol you tried to have an intelligent thread and still got the same replies

    personally any bad work man can blame their tools..

    people should start to back up the claims of glitches with evidence...

  • "Empty Barrels Make The Most Noise"

  • Did anyone even read my post? It clearly states that it lets me go through the cycle of walking, stopping, talking TWICE and THEN it got stuck. I guess my controller's sensitivity was fine for the first two and then magically incorrect for the third?

    Funny how after rewinding my controllers sensitivity is now always ok...

  • Just tried it with different controllers including a brand new one. Still no choice. Shoots me dead. They need to fix this. Whatever the reason, its stilll a game glitch.

  • @holeydonut said:
    - Many Xbox controllers have a problem where the left analog stick does not "center" itself when you let go of it.

    - Even if you are not touching the left joystick, the controller will send a joystick input reading to the Xbox system.

    - Telltale must have made the sensitivity of the left stick input very high for this scene with Brenda. They demand that the user be absolutely still to mimic Lee frozen in fear.

    - Telltale's QA group did not consider the importance of considering the vast states of wear of their customers' controllers.


    This has nothing to do with wear and tear on your Xbox controllers. It's actually a pretty severe bug. I'm on PC, using mouse and keyboard and it doesn't work for me either.

    For those of you who completed this level, that's great for you, but for the rest of us, this level of the game would appear to be bugged and impossible to complete. I never get any kind of dialogue options whatsoever.

    All I can do is move forward or stand in one place. I tried waiting for several minutes, but nothing happens. If I move forward, I get shot. There is not any way to complete the area.

  • do you have minimum hud / alerts on ?

  • @Milosuperspesh said: do you have minimum hud / alerts on ?

    I'm not sure which setting you are referring to.

    I have subtitles off, Detect Selectables on and Story Notifications on.

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