We’re at San Diego, booph 1334, so on and so forth. But we are ALSO schlepping hot jpegs and flopping them right onto your plate. Among other fabulous toys, you might have heard that there is a toy prized above all others. Well, as professional thing-sayers, we have things to say about that.
I met the creator of The Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman, at San Diego Comic-Con a few years ago - Scott introduced me to him. The first thing he said, the very first thing, was that I looked like Bunsen Honeydew and he is exactly right. If you’re going talk about the Walking Dead, I feel like you have to say which Walking Deads you’re a fan of to calibrate things for people: Books Yes, Show No, Board Game No Idea, and Videogame… Yes, to the extent that it’s possible to like the things these people are constantly doing to you.
These fuckers have well and truly cracked the Episodic Nut, by requiring a reasonably priced “whole season” purchase to insure their own solvency and then rewarding you with content drops worth planning around. My son and I played through the new Monkey Island game, and we still quote it to this day; I found myself scouring feeds and counting the days until the next Walking Dead release. It can work, it turns out, but they had to spin the tumbler for awhile to find out how.
I realized about half-way through the second episode that I was no longer having what you might call “fun.” There was no enjoyment anymore. The first episode, sure - I was trying to manage a horrible situation, but there was also a clever little rodent running here and there in my skull pulling levers and trying to manipulate outcomes. That stopped almost immediately the second time around. The game also has kids in it, kids all over, and this changes the stakes for a lot of people. I have a daughter, and a son for that matter, and I know what I’m prepared to do to safeguard them. That man is out now, and he’s not going back in. He’s here for the long haul.
I’m not sure they’re making a game you can win. At best, we’ll can have a say in how we lose, and what’s left of our good intentions when we do.