The Walking Dead: A New Frontier – Episode 4 – Thicker than Water Review (PS4)

The Walking Dead: A New Frontier

The next installment of this game came a lot quicker than I had imagined. From waiting until December until just a few weeks ago for the third episode, I didn’t expect the fourth episode to be out until at least mid-summer with the whole game wrapping up in the fall. I was pleasantly surprised though and was eager to get into the fourth episode after the lackluster events of the third episode. Keep reading to see what I thought about the fourth episode.

The game basically picks up where it left off last episode, there’s a bunch of gun fire and you don’t know who was shot and who wasn’t. You’ll have a quick flash back to a scene between David and Javier trying to show off their brotherly love or lack thereof before getting into the meat of the story. Javier is still trying to get his family, Kate and Gabe, to safety while the fate of David is still up in the air. Of course you’ll run into Clementine. It’s getting to the point of if there’s no Clementine there’s really no Walking Dead game. She’s been a staple point though out this whole series. Moving on though, it’ll be you and your friends to rally the New Frontier people to try and stop the manipulating Joan in an episode filled with twists and turns and another damn cliffhanger ending. What is it with these endings! I’ve already bought the season pass, there’s no reason to end each episode on a cliffhanger to get me to come back.

Awkward Spoiler…is Awkward. Was it just me or was that whole conversation with Clementine about her monthly visitor extremely awkward and unnecessary. Yes, as a woman I understand that every woman goes through this and she’s still just a girl who doesn’t know much because she’s been alone for a really long time or with people who don’t care about her, but did we really have to establish that. What was the point? Was it to show that she’s still a child who’s maturing? I have no idea other than that fact that it was awkward.

I really thought this episode was a good one and it was nothing like those other fourth episodes that we’ve seen before that usually drag on way to long, make little to no sense and are just plain boring. This episode was none of those things and I really enjoyed it. I have to say that while I enjoy the flashbacks to the time where things were normal, showing the relationship between David and Javier are just too quick and really are not establishing the family connection that Telltale is trying to get across. I have a more emotional attachment to Clementine and I could really care less about the brotherly relationship between these two characters no matter how much it’s crammed down my throat while I play. Even though I was still just a little peeved that we didn’t get to play Clementine all that long, it was an interesting flashback this time around that was long and kind of gave you a catch up on where she’s been and what she’s been doing this whole time since we last left her. Clementine is still looking for AJ in this episode and there’s a critical part in the game where you can help her or not. Even though I still feel like I should do everything to help Clementine, this time I couldn’t and in the end I kind of felt bad. Overall though it was a really great episode and it established a lot of things leading up for what will be a great season ender. Hopefully.

Now to the part that makes me sigh each time. The playability. While I did see a definite improvement to the loading times since the last episode and have to acknowledge that even the quick time events are getting better, I still had a game crash. This crash happened right after the first major scene of the game. Luckily the game saved and I didn’t have to go back all that much, but still a game crash is a game crash and it’s inexcusable when it crashes your whole system. This is the second time I’ve reported on this with this series and it’s not a good thing. It seems like when one things is fixed another is broken and nothing with Telltale can ever be perfect. This is just sad. By now this shouldn’t be happening and whatever kinks that need to be worked out should be, but they just aren’t.

The graphics are the one thing that are a staple point to this series and they remain the same from episode to episode and game to game. The consistency is nice and I enjoy it because it’s familiar. Even though it’s familiar, it’s still very well done. It’s so well done that it makes you feel like you’re in the Walking Dead comics. This is one of the things that I can’t say enough how much I enjoy.

Finish this episode, like all the episodes that came before it, and you’ll earn yourself another 6 trophies. While I like that you can just play the game and get the trophies, the trophies aren’t the reason to play this game. The story is a really well developed one and that’s why you should be playing. Not for the easy trophies. I will say though that wow these images are really horrible and unimaginative. Put some effort into your trophy images people, I would really hate for one of these trophies to be one of my milestone trophies because the images are just plain horrible.

Once again no multiplayer, unless you’ve gotten into the whole Crowd Play thing which I have not. I really see no reason to. It’s not like I’m sitting around with a bunch of people who want to make decisions with me, it’s just me playing so I think that setting up this feature is kind of useless. Still waiting to see if anyone has set this up and has used it yet. So if you have drop me a line in the comments section.

Overall I give this episode a 4 out of 5.

What’s Great:
+ Not your typical fourth episode (If you’re a frequent Telltale game player you know what I mean by that.)
+ Fast paced game play that has a lot of action and a lot of story behind it.
+ Same stellar graphics that stayed true to the game but have also improved with the jump from PS3 to PS4.
+ Improved loading times and better quick time events than the last episode.

What’s Not So Great:
Another game crash. What the hell Telltale? Hard game crashes are not a good thing and it needs to be fixed.
Kind of a forced family aspect that I’m not really enjoying all that much and are happening to quick to establish a connection between the characters.

I thought this was a really strong episode in the series and because it ended on a huge cliffhanger I’m eager to see how the game goes from here in the final episode. Will this be the end of Javier and his family so we can get back to Clementine on the next season? Who knows. With the time frame thing, I’m not sure when this episode is going to come out but I’m hoping it’s at least mid-summer so that things can wrap up. I kind of smell some DLC on the way, but I could always be wrong. Anyway, I would say if you’re still on the fence about this game, keep hanging onto that fence because it’s really so much better to play when all of the episodes are released instead of playing them one by one and waiting on Telltale’s release schedule.

Spoilers! Below are the choices that I made for the fourth episode.

The Walking Dead: A New Frontier

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