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Illusion of choice- Summary

posted by kongdong on - last edited - Viewed by 1.8K users

While I enjoyed this series and became attached to it's characters, looking back I realize how little any choices you make matter. Here I will list the major situations and outcomes the episodes put you into. I would advise only reading if you have completed all five.

Episode 1

Day or Night - You get to Hershel's farm at night regardless.
Duck or Shawn - Duck lives, Shawn dies. You leave the farm and never return.
Doug or Carley - Survivor killed later, little different options offered.

Episode 2

Cut his leg off - Him and the black-haired boy die.
Food rations - Does not affect anything.
Kenny or Lilly Leading - Lilly leaves later.
Go to the dairy or stay - You go regardless.
Shoot woman - Danny shoots her if you don't.
Kill Larry - Only affects your standing with Kenny/Lilly.
Kill the St. Johns - Clementine will get over it.
Steal from the car - Stranger hates you anyway.

Episode 3

Shoot or Leave woman - the amount of supplies you get does not affect anything.
Reveal Past (Carley) - Group will later learn and forgive you.
Let Duck Help - He helps no matter what.
Ep. 1 Survivor's Death - Lilly will always kill them.
Leave Lilly or Take her - She will just escape if you bring her.
Fight or Talk down Kenny - Train stops no matter what.
Katjaa's Suicide - Nothing you can do to stop this.
Duck's Fate - Only affects Kenny standing.
Prepare Clem - Mandatory.
Omid or Christa - Both live either way.

Episode 4

Honesty or Threaten - Cancer survivors will help either way.
Leave Clem or Bring her - She will defend Molly in the school, but this is easily done by yourself.
Drop Ben or Pull Him Up - He dies later and affects nothing if he lives.
Lee gets Bitten - Nothing you can do to stop this.
Show bite or Hide it - They will find out eventually.
Pick your Group - Lee can do everything in this segment alone.
Cut arm off - Lee will die whether you amputate or not.

Episode 5

Kenny's Sacrifice - Kenny will die for Christa or Ben.
Crossing the Sign - Lee will jump down if he goes first or not.
Talk with Stranger - Nothing you say here influences anything.
Kill the Stranger - If you don't kill him, Clementine will.
Last Words - Does not affect anything this season.

Please do not take this as an attack to the episodes. I had a good time playing them, it just saddens me to realize nothing I did really mattered. And we need to keep insisting on more influence so the devs actually make the game better in the upcoming season. Impactful choices are the only thing this game is missing to make it the best game ever.

46 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • @lucidity02 said: My choices mattered to me. Whether they shaped the game's overall narrative structure in any meaningful way never really mattered to me.

    If it mattered to you, then it's possible for it not to matter to someone else. Therefore, the complaint is valid.

  • @Doctanian said: If it mattered to you, then it's possible for it not to matter to someone else. Therefore, the complaint is valid.

    Where did I say it wasn't?

  • Anyone who says the Carley/Doug choice is an "illusion" is flat out wrong.

  • @DreadMagus said: Anyone who says the Carley/Doug choice is an "illusion" is flat out wrong.

    Well, its clearly a choice, but there characters fill the same roles. If the characters were truly different wouldn't they have effected the plot in different ways too?

  • Carley allows you to come clean with the rest of the group - Doug does not. Though he knows his chalk.

  • I'm pretty sure everyone doesn't really give a shit if you tell them or not? There might be a little conflict, but I don't think that changes any major events in the story.

  • The game is more about making you feel differently.

    When I first played episode 2, I tried to save Larry, but then Kenny crushed his head. I was so shocked and rather angry at Kenny. When he asked me what I thought of what happened, I stayed silent. I honestly had no words for him, and my opinion of him and the way I felt about him changed from there on forward.

    Someone who decided to kill Larry would feel very different to the way I felt. They probably felt a little guilty for acting so soon, for putting Lilly (and Clementine to a lesser, but nonetheless still powerful degree) through it, but they probably also felt like they were saving everyone's lives and protecting the group, and that it had to be done.

    These are two very different outcomes, and this doesn't even bring into it the way the in-game consequences change.

    What you're asking for just isn't realistic. The whole point of fighting with or talking down Kenny was so you could stop the train. You want to know what happens when you don't stop the train? Duck kills everyone. You can see that for yourself.

    Sure, some of the choices seem like they could have played out differently, or had a greater impact on the story, but it's not really within Telltale's power on such a tight schedule and for such a low price.

    No game that currently exists has truly branching choices that affect the way the story plays out (well, I've heard things about The Witcher 2 doing something to that effect, but I'll have to play it before I can say anything). At this point in time it just isn't economic or efficient.

    It'd be awesome, sure, but it's probably not going to happen for a little while.

  • @kongdong said: While I enjoyed this series and became attached to it's characters, looking back I realize how little any choices you make matter. Here I will list the major situations and outcomes the episodes put you into. I would advise only reading if you have completed all five.

    Episode 1

    Day or Night - You get to Hershel's farm at night regardless.
    Duck or Shawn - Duck lives, Shawn dies. You leave the farm and never return.
    Doug or Carley - Survivor killed later, little different options offered.

    Episode 2

    Cut his leg off - Him and the black-haired boy die.
    Food rations - Does not affect anything.
    Kenny or Lilly Leading - Lilly leaves later.
    Go to the dairy or stay - You go regardless.
    Shoot woman - Danny shoots her if you don't.
    Kill Larry - Only affects your standing with Kenny/Lilly.
    Kill the St. Johns - Clementine will get over it.
    Steal from the car - Stranger hates you anyway.

    Episode 3

    Shoot or Leave woman - the amount of supplies you get does not affect anything.
    Reveal Past (Carley) - Group will later learn and forgive you.
    Let Duck Help - He helps no matter what.
    Ep. 1 Survivor's Death - Lilly will always kill them.
    Leave Lilly or Take her - She will just escape if you bring her.
    Fight or Talk down Kenny - Train stops no matter what.
    Katjaa's Suicide - Nothing you can do to stop this.
    Duck's Fate - Only affects Kenny standing.
    Prepare Clem - Mandatory.
    Omid or Christa - Both live either way.

    Episode 4

    Honesty or Threaten - Cancer survivors will help either way.
    Leave Clem or Bring her - She will defend Molly in the school, but this is easily done by yourself.
    Drop Ben or Pull Him Up - He dies later and affects nothing if he lives.
    Lee gets Bitten - Nothing you can do to stop this.
    Show bite or Hide it - They will find out eventually.
    Pick your Group - Lee can do everything in this segment alone.
    Cut arm off - Lee will die whether you amputate or not.

    Episode 5

    Kenny's Sacrifice - Kenny will die for Christa or Ben.
    Crossing the Sign - Lee will jump down if he goes first or not.
    Talk with Stranger - Nothing you say here influences anything.
    Kill the Stranger - If you don't kill him, Clementine will.
    Last Words - Does not affect anything this season.

    Please do not take this as an attack to the episodes. I had a good time playing them, it just saddens me to realize nothing I did really mattered. And we need to keep insisting on more influence so the devs actually make the game better in the upcoming season. Impactful choices are the only thing this game is missing to make it the best game ever.

    Illusion Of Choice in The Walking Dead Game (edited version) - Summary

    (The summary you see above and noted in the unparenthesed portions below was written by another poster, when I saw it I agreed with many of its points, however, I did feel that there could be answers that could change those points from negatives that were originally felt to be unimportant or irrelevant to the story arc, and show how those choices could be made more meaningfully in the game. All my answers are included in the parethesed portions below.)
    -Teal


    While I enjoyed this series and became attached to it's characters, looking back I realize how little any choices you make matter. Here I will list the major situations and outcomes the episodes put you into. I would advise only reading if you have completed all five.


    (Choices can matter, and can alter events very dramatically. I would like to offer some attempts at how this 'could' have been worked out. Certainly it would require more time and effort and more extensively written possibilities for the episodes on Telltales part. But I think the audience payoff and satisfaction and the replayability of the game, and the possibility of even wider appeal due to the very different outcomes for player choice would make it more than worth the effort.


    Episode 1

    Day or Night - You get to Hershel's farm at night regardless.
    (Day travel takes you to Farm, Night travel takes you to abandoned Motel where you later meet the other survivors.)

    Duck or Shawn - Duck lives, Shawn dies. You leave the farm and never return.
    (If Duck dies Kenny and Katja leave, but their remains are found later outside of town in their car[Shawn and Chet take Kenny and Katja's place in going to Macon with Lee and Clementine.] Kenny first near the car with the remains of a Zombie, and Katja some distance away in a field where she had been zombified, but killed by some unknown survivor.)
    (If Shawn dies Herschel kicks everyone off the farm and Kenny and Katja and Duck and Lee and Clementine all go together to Macon in Kenny's car as originally told.]

    Doug or Carley - Survivor killed later, little different options offered.
    (If Doug survives, he is the cause of the Raiders breaking into the camp, where one of the survivors is killed.)
    (if Carly survives, she is the one that awakes and catches the Raiders attempting to break into the camp, she alerts the other survivors and they drive off the Raiders with no loss of any of the survivors.)

    Episode 2

    Cut off Mark's leg - Him and the black-haired boy die.
    (If black haired boy dies, lets call him Steve, then Mark survives.The trap holding his leg is broken some other way without amputating his leg. Perhaps a sledgehammer to the trap? Breaking his leg, but not having him bleed out.)
    (If Steve lives running from the zombies, then Mark dies from Raiders attack later? Or from bleeding out as was in original.)

    Food rations - Does not affect anything.
    (If we ration food, then everyone is relatively strong and fight off the Raiders with no losses.)
    (If food is not rationed, then everyone is relatively weak and in fighting off the Raiders we lose [two] survivors.)

    Kenny or Lilly Leading - Lilly leaves later.
    (If Lilly leads, then Kenny and Katja and Duck leave in Kenny's car, getting out onto the empty freeway and on the way to Savannah.)
    (If Kenny leads, then Lilly leaves and makes it through the woods past the Raiders and the Zombies.)

    Go to the dairy or stay - You go regardless.
    (If you go to dairy then, the raiders do not attack the motel, but attack the farm, which causes problems for the dairy family who is killed in the battle and the raiders take over the farm as Lee and the survivors escape and the zombies attack the farm.)
    (if you stay at the motel, the raiders attack the motel, but are driven off, the survivors escape in the rv when the dairy farmers attack the raiders and both are left at an impasse as the survivors get away.)

    Shoot woman - Danny shoots her if you don't.
    (If you shoot the crazy woman, that wanted to take Clementine, then Clementine is protected until you leave the motel.)
    (If you do not shoot the crazy woman, but let her go, she sneaks into the camp later and kidnaps Clementine and when the survivors leave the farm, or the motel later, you stay behind to find Clementine. Finally catching up with the woman and Clementine several days later in the woods where Clementine runs to you, and the woman in attempting to run away runs straight into the clutches of a zombie.)

    Kill Larry - Only affects your standing with Kenny/Lilly.
    (If Larry is killed, then Kenny [if he is in charge] trusts you, though if it is Lilly in charge, then she distrusts you.)
    (If Larry lives, then Kenny distrusts you, or Lilly trusts you for saving her father.)
    (If Larry survives, then he is grateful to you for saving his life and becomes supportive and helpful instead of argumentative and adversarial toward you.)

    Kill the St. Johns - Clementine will get over it.
    (If you kill the St. Johns man, Clementine will see it and start to distrust you, leading to problems later from that mistrust.)
    (If you let the St. Johns man live, then Clementine will see it and have more trust and admiration for you.)

    Steal from the car - Stranger hates you anyway.
    (If you steal from the car, the stranger will have lost his family and hate you for that and kidnap Clementine later, attempting to get to you to kill you to pay for your having gotten his family killed.)
    (If you don't steal from the car, the stranger will still have his family and will help you escape Savannah later [in episode 5] by diverting the zombies attention by driving off with his horn honking, getting out onto the freeway and driving away, apparently escaping unharmed.[you can help him find fuel for his car by siphoning it from other cars in the garage to fill the tank on the station wagon].)

    Episode 3

    Shoot or Leave woman - the amount of supplies you get does not affect anything.
    (If you shoot the woman in the motel, that is bitten, you take her supplies and that means you stay longer at the motel, until either the dairy farmers or the raiders come.)
    (If you do not shoot the woman, but leave her alone, the lack of extra supplies will force the group to leave early. [or help her by finding antibotics, then it will slow the zombie disease and she will join the group as you flee early from the motel, even before the dairy farmers and the raiders arrive. Leaving the dairy farmers and the raiders battling as the rv escapes the town. This will leave open the possibility that antibiotics and amputation can save a bite victim.)

    Reveal Your Past (To Carley) - Group will later learn and forgive you.
    (If you reveal your true past to carly, the group will forgive and trust you later.)
    (If you hide your true past to carly,[more likely if you have already lied to Herschel and or Kenny and Katja] then she and the group will find out later, and mistrust you, and leave in the rv when you are sleeping.)
    (If you have lied to Clementine during your time with her, she will leave with the others and you will follow, finding the rv turned over outside of town and several of the survivors dead, and a few of them alive that are now shooting at you.)
    (If you save Clementine during this confrontation with the survivors and the zombies it attracts, outside of town, she will begin to trust you again, and forgive you.)
    (If you do not save Clementine during this confrontation, she will get bit, and the survivors will abandon her, and you will have a choice to stay with her, [with antibiotics and amputation to save her? Or of leaving her. If you leave her, this will lead to a downward spiral of Lee losing his humanity and compassion. He will get progressively more and more self-centered and arrogant and violent, and take advantage of and rob and rough up and intimidate other survivors he comes across. Until he eventually is killed by a family whose home he has broken into outside Savannah in the last episode.]

    (If you have been truthful with her, she will have fallen asleep beside you and the both of you will awaken alone, towards morning and the raiders and dairy farmers on the way to the camp. where you and she escape out the back of the motel and find the rv on the outskirts of town with the some of the survivors dead. If you help them, they will take you and Clementine back into the group and everyone will escape to the train where the rv runs out of gas.)
    (If you don't help them, they will abandon you and Clementine, and you and Clementine will spend the next three hazardous days crossing the woods to where the train was, finding an abandoned farmhouse [the dairy farm] where the farmers have been killed in town by the raiders, and a farm truck with gas in the barn, you find a zombie body in the barn, already killed, and the both of you leave quickly, driving at night, and almost crashing when almost running over a zombie in the road, but escaping and going on toward Savannah.)

    Let Duck Help - He helps no matter what.
    (If you let Duck help, then you discover the clue that leads to an early guess to the situation with the girl who has been bitten.)
    (If you do not let Duck help, then Ben will never discover the girl crying and the group will leave the motel without learning of a possible cure.)

    Ep. 1 Survivor's Death - Lilly will always kill them.
    (If Doug survives the pharmacy, he is caught letting the raiders in [instead of Ben], and is shot and killed by Lilly, which resolves the dilemma of the confrontation at the rv.)
    (If Carly survives the pharmacy, and Lilly's father is alive, [then Ben is now guilty of helping the raiders] and Carly awakens and sounds the alarm as the raiders are attempting to break into the camp. Lilly grudgingly admires the help after the raiders have been pushed back, and apologises to Carly and the two become friends,and Lilly stays with the group as they move toward Savannah.)

    Leave Lilly or Take her - She will just escape if you bring her.
    (If Lilly's father was killed, and Carly survived, then Lilly will kill Carly when the rv stops outside of town. Bringing her after this, will have her escape later at the train with the rv and a high probability that she survives.)
    (Leaving her on the road after the death of Carly will give a high probability of her having a very difficult time staying alive and leads to a harsher and meaner, and perhaps losing an eye that gives us the Lilly close to the tv show.)

    Fight or Talk down Kenny - Train stops no matter what.
    (If we fight with Kenny, then train goes on, and the survivors find a school bus almost at dusk, right before night and go on toward Savannah, without meeting Omid and Christa [If Lilly has been friends with Carly and did not kill her, because her father is still alive, then Lilly and Larry take the place that Omid and Christa filled later.)
    (If we talk down Kenny, then the survivors go by train and meet Omid and Christa outside Savannah.)

    Katjaa's Suicide - Nothing you can do to stop this.
    (If Katjaa talks to Clementine before she leaves with Duck, then she will cry, but she will not commit suicide, but will not be able to kill Duck, leaving it to Lee. If Katjaa lives then Kenny will not commit suicide later when Ben, or Lilly or christa is threatened by Zombies in episode 5. He will attempt to stay alive for Katjaa and to help her deal with the loss of their son.)
    (If Katjaa does not speak to Clementine, then she will commit suicide which will lead to Kenny dying later due to depression over losing his wife and son.)

    Duck's Fate - Only affects Kenny standing.
    (If Duck is bitten, and the woman at the motel was left behind, or died, then Duck's will slowly succumb to the zombie disease and will be relieved of his misery by Lee.)
    (If the woman at the motel that was bit, has been treated with antibiotics and amputation, then their exists the possibility of Duck being saved, with antibiotics and amputation.)
    (If his parents can accept the harsh risk, then Duck may survive.)
    (If his parents cannot accept the risk, then he will die.)
    (If antibiotics and amputation are used for any of the survivors, then those survivors will last through episode 5, if they are not killed along the way, by chance encounters. Those that survive to episode 5 can then be shown to survive. Showing this as a cure.[If done before certain symptoms set in, such as discoloration in the hands and face and eyes, which may take as long as 24 hours to set in. That would give survivors that were bitten a 24 hour window to be saved if they can get antibiotics and amputation, depending on where they were bit. Hand or leg might easily be amputated, but on the neck, or shoulder or back, might mean of course no possibility of amputation, almost then insuring death, unless the antibiotics have a fifty percent chance of stopping the infection on its own.)
    (Perhaps the bitter and cruel irony would be someone who couldn't face the risk and it was then recognized later that the lack of taking the risk was what killed them, would lend some of the very heartbreaking emotion at the end of episode 5. Where Lee may either survive if he had antibiotics and amputation, or died if he did not have antibiotics and amputation.Thus continuing into season 2 or leaving Clementine to be cared for by someone else in season 2.)

    Prepare Clem - Mandatory.
    (If you prepare Clementine for the dangers ahead, by cutting her hair or teaching her how to shoot a gun, or watching vigilantly for zombies, she will be more mindful of being careful in the future and survive in those encounters with zombies where she saves other people's lives and on her own.)
    (If you do not prepare Clementine for this, ignoring it instead, she will make mistakes in attempting to save other people and those people will be hurt or killed. Also the chances of her being hurt or killed later go up due to her lack of her being taught.)

    Omid or Christa - Both live either way.
    (If Lilly and Larry carry on from earlier episodes, then Omid and Christa were never met.)
    (If the raid into Crawford leaves Molly dead, then the group will return to Omid dead, or Larry if that track, then Christa or Lilly will die or be lost and assumed dead, in a distracted depression while attempting to escape from the city.)


    Episode 4

    Honesty or Threaten - Cancer survivors will help either way.
    (Honesty will lead to cancer survivors helping)
    (Threatening them will lead to having them not helping, leaving you to your own devices and other plans, and tricking you and escaping later, taking the boat with them.)
    (If you are honest and they help, they will not take the boat, and this will give the whole group a chance at leaving Savannah by boat. If Molly of course, stays in Savannah, or has died, then the cancer survivors will move into crawford and our survivors can take the boat without leaving anyone else behind.)

    Leave Clem or Bring her - She will defend Molly in the school, but this is easily done by yourself.
    (If you leave her behind, this puts her at danger by Ben not protecting her, which may lead to her being hurt or scratched or bitten. This could lead to Lee threatening Ben directly, and spiraling down into rage and remorselessness. Or of working through the very stressful and uncertain time of taking care of Clementine with antibiotics and amputation until the end of episode 5, where if she survives to that end, she will survive and give evidence of a probable cure. Also without her, Molly is killed by the zombies.)
    (If you take her with you, then she is there to save Molly, and avoid all the drama with bites and rage and remorse for Lee and Ben, who would have committed suicide [if Lee does not hurt him, but only yelled at him for Clementine being hurt. If Ben had been hurt by Lee, then he survives and sacrifices himself for Kenny, who falls off the roof and breaks a leg in episode 5. Or another survivor if Kenny and Katjaa and Duck are gone from the story by this time.])

    Drop Ben or Pull Him Up - He dies later and affects nothing if he lives.
    (If you drop Ben, due to Clementine being hurt or bit? Then it will start a downward spiral for Lee, even if Clementine survives.)
    (If you save Ben, then he gets bitten in Lee's place at the end of episode 4, or if Lee gets bitten, Ben saves Kenny, or another survivor that falls from the roof when escaping the mansion.)

    Lee gets Bitten - Nothing you can do to stop this.
    (If Lee is bitten, either his arm is amputated or not, if so, then antibiotics and amputation may save his life.)
    (If Ben is bitten in Lee's place, Ben says he is sorry for Clementine being hurt and Lee forgives him and Ben sacrifices himself later, for Kenny or another survivor.)


    Show bite or Hide it - They will find out eventually.
    (If Lee shows bite, then he has a chance of surviving, because with the survivors help he can have the arm amputated and have one of the survivors put a turnequet on his arm, keeping him from bleeding to death.)
    (If Lee does not show the bite, then in attempting to amputate his own arm later while alone, or if he leaves the arm unattended, Lee will die at the end of episode 5.)

    Pick your Group - Lee can do everything in this segment alone.

  • This is completely true, there is no real choice.

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