Alex Lynch Reviews: TellTale's THE WALKING DEAD Episode 5; "No Time Left"

In the highly-anticipated season finale of the critically acclaimed video game series, does TellTale's The Walking Dead's last outing live up to the hype or does Lee Everett's fifth adventure fall short? Find out my take after the jump.

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By Alex Lynch - 11/22/2012


It’s still hard to believe that it’s finally over. TellTale Games have finally finished up with the much-anticipated first season of The Walking Dead video game series, and it was absolutely the best episode yet. Yes, I know it’s cliché and I’ve said it a lot, but the company pushes themselves to one-up the past episode each and every time without failure. With nominations in six Spike! Video Game Awards categories, the developer has finally got the attention that they deserved before The Walking Dead with games such as Back To The Future, Jurassic Park and Sam & Max. The developer took the formula from all these great games and kept improving it each time until the narrative masterpiece of The Walking Dead was born. It’s arguable to say that Glen Mazarra or Robert Kirkman could take a page out of Telltale’s book. And now that the finale is finally out, was it worth the hype?



Episode 5 picks up with Lee’s desperate trek to find Clementine, the girl who he swore to protect since the first episode. Her character is exceptionally written, forcing the player to get emotionally attached to her presence. For me, I’d do anything to protect Clementine from not only the (un)dead, but the living freaks who would want to hurt her, similar to the likes of ‘The Governor’,’Negan’, or even ‘The Hunters’ from Robert Kirkman’s comic book. Even though the threat of the ‘walkers’ is very important to the property, Telltale put the perfect balance of adding a living, breathing enemy within the world of ‘walkers’ to their story, something I feel that Kirkman does not do (at certain times) in the graphic novel. This episode perfectly conveyed that balance, and from front-to-back you won’t know what life the ‘walkers’ could take, or what could happen to Clementine at the hands of the man on the walkie-talkie. Lee’s journey since meeting ‘Clem’ has led up to this final adventure within a walker-infested Savannah, determined to save the last person that he truly cares about before his time runs out.



Sean Vanaman (the creative mind behind the series) brought the perfect closure to the characters that deserved it, and the characters that didn’t, as well. Almost every choice made by the player (spanning far back into the very first episode) comes back to haunt Lee. For the first time in a video game series, I was afraid to confront my past. I’ve made some pretty morbid decisions, I’ve killed people and I’ve left people to die, but not once did I think that those decisions would come back to attack me in ways I couldn’t expect. The finale takes it upon itself to resolve plenty of sub-stories beyond Lee’s main troubles, and wraps up most of the character arcs. We certainly don’t know where the second season will take us, or whether or not it’ll have the ability to top the masterpiece that Telltale have already created.



The game suffers from very few technical bugs, although I have seen some game breaking bugs from other users that I’ve yet to encounter (except for save corruption). When it was introduced in the third episode, the shooting mechanic was very frustrating and confusing at times, almost forcing me to “rage-quit”. However, by the finale they certainly improved on it offering user-friendly controls and aiming for when Lee and the group needed to take an armed stand against an incredibly deadly wave of walkers. Overall, Telltale clearly took fan feedback and tried to improve the game at all costs.



The Walking Dead is undoubtedly a masterpiece with perfect pace, characterization and storytelling. It combines the simple medium of a point-and-click adventure game with a superb voice cast to create one of the most emotional experiences you’ll have from the medium, and its property. As a fan of TellTale Games and a fan of The Walking Dead, I can say that their next production (based off of DC Comics’ Fables) has huge shoes to fill, a feat which is not quite easily done.

A masterpiece in storytelling, voice acting and gaming, The Walking Dead is a hard contender for Game of The Year that ensures one of the most memorable experiences you’ll have. I firmly believe that Lee Everett and Clementine’s name will soon become famous in the gaming world.


5 out of 5 stars.

Vote for The Walking Dead as Game Of The Year in the Spike! Video Game Awards.




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18 Comments
Kyos - 11/22/2012, 7:14 PM
^ Yes.

Lee is a damn cool protagonist and Clementine is the best child character in a game yet! The rest of the cast... great as well. There aren't many games that made me cry. Damn, did I cry playing this game and this episode in particular!
ZombieOverEasy - 11/22/2012, 7:57 PM
I love this game so much.

I can't wait til they get around to doing season 2.
CaptainObvious - 11/22/2012, 8:02 PM
"Even though the threat of the ‘walkers’ is very important to the property, Telltale put the perfect balance of adding a living, breathing enemy within the world of ‘walkers’ to their story, something I feel that Kirkman does not do (at certain times) in the graphic novel."

This is the problem I have with the comics. The villains are one-dimensional. The Governor was justa psychopath who was not at all believable as a leader. Negan is just an obnoxious bully who needs to have Lucille jammed down his throat. They're kind of like an antagonist you would read about in a Stephen King novel. They have no human qualities or traits outside of being bad guys and therefore are not compelling and interesting as bad guys.

The only villains I did like in the comics were The Hunters. While they were the villains of the story and committed many atrocities, you could understand why they did the things they did. Even if it was evil. That is what The Walking Dead is about. What people become and what choices they make in a post-apocalyptic enviroment and what separates them from the savage zombies.

CaptainObvious - 11/22/2012, 8:41 PM
@TheAlexLynch- I think that last time somebody was eaten by walkers was the No Way Out storyline. However at the end of that story, Rick comes to an revelation. He realizes that the dead are a managable threat. I do like that bit because it hints that the comic would be going in a new direction. Something that rarely happens in comics today. The walkers are nothing more than an obstacle and can be contained if everybody works together.

The only downside is if you're going to play down a long-running threat in your story, you have to play up the other threat. In this case: The Saviors. I am intrigued by the direction of Rick and his group being compromised, it would be even better if Negan wasn't so damn loathable. You know that annoying jock in high school who laughed at people who he believed were beneath him and got by on achievements instead skills? That's Negan.

Let's put aside the fact that he has the most punchable face I've ever seen in comics. Negan's only trait as a villain is he is an intolerable knucklehead. He has no real depth to him. We don't know why he does what he does. He doesn't even try to make the audience understand where he's coming from. This is why I like the TV show's Governor over the comic's version. He is an absolute, much like the Joker in The Dark Knight. We understand why he is such a ruthless leader. He's not shielded so we can't see what he's thinking.

To me, that's a great villain. You love that you hate them.
GLprime2814 - 11/22/2012, 9:17 PM
Iwould love them to write an episode of the show and include lee and Clem.
bbarber2323 - 11/22/2012, 10:05 PM
Wow. So I got all excited and jumped on xbox to download this and its not out yet!!! Thx a lot dick!! Review it after it hits!!!
FightAs0ne - 11/22/2012, 10:10 PM
Alex, how hard was it for you to write this review after playing it? Because I know I had no words after this episode. It truly left me feeling emotionally drained, and that ending song didn't help either. One of the few game to make me cry. GOTY for me.
Maximus101 - 11/22/2012, 10:33 PM
Ya this episode was amazing and I enjoyed this game very much.
bbarber2323 - 11/22/2012, 10:42 PM
The Walking Dead video game made you cry? Sell ur gaming system and use the money to buy a girlfriend. Wow. Or go see a shrink with that money. My God I cant believe a grown ass man just wrote that. How lonely are you??
TheBatman1 - 11/22/2012, 11:52 PM
@bbarber Maybe he cried because he is not a heartless dick and can feel sympathy
ZombieOverEasy - 11/22/2012, 11:53 PM
@bbarber2323 You've never formed an emotional connection with a character in any form of media? I feel sorry for you, bro.
IronLantern79 - 11/23/2012, 12:09 AM
Can't tell you how much I love everything Walking Dead. Keep up the great work!

http://blip.tv/baronsmoviecrypt/baron-von-ghoulstein-s-movie-crypt-in-the-year-2889-6451424
GoILL - 11/23/2012, 7:20 AM
I might have to break down and just buy the last three episodes for this game instead of waiting for the plus free downloads.
Parker2017 - 11/23/2012, 9:57 AM
Real Men can cry at good emotional stories, like the walking dead [the video game] jackass's. Alex You have done an amazing review and While I haven't read the comics this Negan seem like well Danger Stranger said it best, he' a stereotypical old world alpha male,and while some smart People ruled the world and some where boneheads, it does show what will happen in a "real world senario". I honestly can not wait for Season 2 of the walking dead, and hopeuflly we can play as Clemintine, omid, adn crista who I think she's pregnant.
FightAs0ne - 11/23/2012, 10:18 AM
Yeah yeah yeah. And demeaning somebody over the internet makes you a gangster. Congratulations on that achievement, douche.
Kyos - 11/23/2012, 1:35 PM
Haha, the people! :D

@bbarber2323
1. I doubt I'd get enough for my old PS3 to "buy a girlfriend". (maybe we have different standards in that department, though. ^^)
2. Prolly not enough for a good shrink either.
3. Thanks for acknowleding my grown ass manliness! :)
4. Urm. That's kind of a deep question. Right now as I'm typing this, let's say... moderately? Could be better, could be worse.

Anyways, thanks for the worries, but I'm good and will continue to cry because of whatever the hell pleases me. ;)
bbarber2323 - 11/23/2012, 7:44 PM
@thebatman...sorry for being an adult. Now go hang out with your imaginary girlfriend.

@zombieovereasy....ya I cried during Old Yeller when I was like [frick]in 8. Now I just cry at real shit like death of a loved one..you know...grown up shit.

@fearitself...its kinda hard to respond to you. Couldnt understand exactly what you wrote. However, im not an asshole im just realistic.

@Kyos...ya you are entitled to live however you want. Very true. You still need to get laid dude. You cant be happy. If youre being honest.
WesleyGibson - 11/29/2012, 8:36 PM
This is truly one of the best games I have ever played, hands down, along with Resident Evil 4 and Max Payne.

Not to offend any fans out there, but Call of Duty is the same old shooter bullshit with no story and no meaning besides to waste your life calling other players (which are 90% of the time, better than you) noobs. God of War is just classic stories on steroids.

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