'The Walking Dead Episode 5: No Time Left'
Windows 8/7/Vista/XP (Xbox 360, PS3)
ESRB rating: Mature
Review rating: 4.0 stars
Just when I thought the zombie fad may be ... err ... dying off, the popularity of the undead is resurrected by "The Walking Dead" TV and video game series. This year, fans of the TV show have been satiating their macabre desires in between seasons by playing installments of the video game, and the latest episode is filled with twists and turns as well as plenty of bloodletting!
While both series follow different characters in the same setting, "The Walking Dead Episode 5: No Time Left" centers on a man named Lee. "Episode 5" sees Lee searching for the abducted child, Clementine, which concludes in a silly chase that seems removed from the zombie-infested world. Like past episodes, key characters will die, and this time Lee must make a difficult decision that will determine how ... umm ... handy he is in the future.
At first glance, this video game series doesn't look special. In fact, some people would consider the cartoon-like visuals to be mediocre. There's no sprawling vistas or heavy attention to detail. Even the point-and-click game play is unremarkable. What sets this game apart is the excellent storytelling coupled with the cause-and-effect choices forced upon players.
Ever since Episode 1, players have had to make extremely difficult decisions on the fly for their character such as: "Do I help this person while putting Lee in danger?" Other decisions involve forging alliances, which usually turns other people against Lee. Most of these decisions have immediate results, while others affect how Lee is treated later in the game.
Episode 5 focuses more on storytelling and less on difficult choices as it becomes obvious that some characters were never meant to survive. However, the excellent ending for "The Walking Dead Episode 5: No Time Left" (which also ends the first season of the video game series) makes up for this and sets up Lee and Clementine as the dynamic duo to follow in 2013!"Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage 2"