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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

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The Success Of The Walking Dead
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

GamesIndustry has posted an interview with Telltale Games' Dan Connors and Kevin Boyle about the company's The Walking Dead episodic game series. Based on the graphic novels by Robert Kirkman, the adventure follows the story of a band of zombie apocalypse survivors. Each episode following the first is uniquely tailored to the choices players made in previous installments.

After a year laden with discussions of violence in video games The Walking Dead feels refreshing, even vital. Here, the violence is fraught, desperate, messy, occasionally sombre, but never fun. It isn't the first time that a game has attempted to attach more than a burst of adrenaline to its bursts of mayhem - Bioshock springs to mind, as does Spec Ops: The Line - but generally speaking they are isolated moments shrouded in hour upon hour of consequence-free slaughter. The Walking Dead, on the other hand, never once falters in its intent to keep violence "in its proper place," and for that reason alone it is remarkable. One can only hope that it's queued up and ready to download on Joe Biden's Steam account.

"It's really at the core of what we're doing," says Boyle. "It's not in addition to a series of other mechanics. That was the thing that we wanted to get across. It's centre stage in the game.

"It's about the emotional response to the storytelling and the interactivity as opposed to the visceral response and the surge of adrenaline. That's not very well explored [in games], and that's really what we were setting out to do. That's the opportunity. That's where The Walking Dead's power lies."

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Games Industry: The Strange Success Of The Walking Dead
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