E3 2011: Telltale Games E3 2011 Line-Up Feature
Written Saturday, June 18, 2011 By Richard WalkerView author's profile
During E3 2011, one developer came out all-guns blazing with a host of genuinely exciting downloadable point-and-click-style games for the PlayStation Network based on a number of different IPs, three of which are TV and movie-based properties that will ignite more than a little excitement inside anyone with a pulse.
With that in mind, we headed over to Telltale Games' booth away from the insanity and noise of the main South Hall and the slightly less mad West Hall, in a nice, relatively quiet stand with a big zombie arm reaching out of the doors and into the middle of the room in a fitting tribute to one of the most memorable scenes from The Walking Dead TV show and graphic novel.
The nice folks from Telltale then proceeded to show us their line-up for the rest of this year and the beginning of the next, with headlining titles like the aforementioned Walking Dead and the eagerly-anticipated Jurassic Park : The Game (already previewed today) at the top of the menu. We've put together some mini-previews of these games together for you right here in one place, to hopefully give you a good overview of what Telltale has up its sleeve for the coming months. Read on!
Back to the Future: The Game Episode 5 – Telltale Games will be releasing the fifth and final episode of the current season of its brilliantly quirky and stylish take on the Back to the Future movies on PC and Mac in a week, with the PSN version set to follow at a later date. This episode, entitled 'OUTATIME' will be special for several reasons. First of all, it will be directed by Monkey Island alumnus, Dave Grossman. Secondly, it will star Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly for the first time, reuniting him with Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown. And thirdly, episode five will be absolutely free.
In OUTATIME, “Doc Brown and Marty will be working at cross-purposes”, Grossman tells us, which should make for an interesting dynamic for the final episode of this season of Back to the Future. But will there be a new season on the cards as this one wraps up? It's possible that there will be a new season according to Grossman. That would be very welcome indeed. Roads? Where we're going we don't need roads!
Grossman is also working on King's Quest as a new episodic property for Telltale, which will release sometime in 2012 and will most probably make its way to the PlayStation Network.
Puzzle Agent 2 – Based upon the idiosyncratic indie comic that's a little bit Fargo, Puzzle Agent 2 is set to come to PC and Mac on June 30th, with a PSN version in the pipeline set to come later this year. Once again, you assume the role of oddball detective Nelson Tethers, as you embark upon your mission to solve puzzles as part of the FBI's 'puzzle research division'. Nelson comes across a case riddled with loose ends and can't help but snoop around Sheriff Bahg's office looking for clues, which is where the story begins.
“It's sort of like Fargo crossed with Professor Leyton,” says Brand Manager Josh Viloria, as Tethers encounters a puzzle that involves using one chainsaw cut to get through a mass of chains blocking a door into the office. Upon completing the puzzle, we get a rundown of the masses of tax dollars spent so far, before moving onto the next puzzle that involves shifting furniture to block lights so that Nelson can make it across a room without being spotted. Each puzzle has now been streamlined based upon fan feedback from the first game, we're told.
These are nice, short little brainteasers, punctuated by humorous, hand-drawn sequences with Tethers recording his strange thoughts on his dictaphone. The short demo of Puzzle Agent 2 ends with Tethers meeting the game's femme fatale Korka Teterdottir, who's more than a match for him when it comes to puzzle-solving. There's a funny exchange between the two indicative that's of the rest of the game, that ought to make Puzzle Agent 2 a cool little point-and-click puzzler well worth a look when it hits PSN later in the year.
Hector: Badge of Carnage – Telltale is also planning a PSN version of Hector: Badge of Carnage, a three episode adventure from Irish developer Straandlooper that stars the titular cop, who is both disreputable and uncouth, but gets the job done, even if it is in the worst possible way. Hector is a fun homage to the old point-and-clicks of yesteryear, with its own cartoon style and a vein of wicked humour, as the drunken Inspector Hector has to diffuse a hostage situation in Clappers Wreake, when all of the other negotiators are killed.
Episode one of Hector will apparently be coming to PSN in fall 2011 and has been rebuilt using Telltale's in-house tool set. Episodes 2 and 3 are set to follow and will be built from the ground up using Telltale's tools.
The Walking Dead – Based upon both the fantastic graphic novel and hit TV series, The Walking Dead is set to come to the PlayStation Network, with an original story following a new character named Lee Everett. Zoning in on the key theme of people losing their humanity amid a zombie apocalypse, The Walking Dead will pick up the action with Everett as he escapes from his prison escort after it's hit by a car and rolls into a ditch. A free man, Everett finds himself trying to leave Atlanta as the zombie hordes bear down upon him and a little seven-year old girl named Clementine who looks to him for protection. Taking Clementine under his wing, Everett will find himself facing both the undead and unfamiliar characters, some of which will be out to double cross him.
Familiar faces like Lilly from the books will also make an appearance, as will locations like Herschel's farm, which you'll visit before Rick Grimes manages to make it there. The Walking Dead game hopes to “push the boundaries of what's been done by Telltale in the past”, says Telltale's Kevin Boyle, and as such, the game will focus on the human aspects of the story, creating tension with the ever-looming threat of death around every turn. Although there's no screenshots or gameplay on offer of The Walking Dead as yet, the game will be evocative of the books' visual style, will be a 3D adventure game and will be episodic. The exact mechanics also have yet to be settled upon, but what we've learnt about the game so far is intriguing nonetheless.
The Walking Dead will be shuffling onto PSN in winter 2011 as an as yet unspecified number of episodes, at a price that's still being agreed upon. We'd love to tell you more, but that's all there is for now...