Whether you’re into zombies, fairy tales, or the Starks, there’s a Telltale game out there for you. But is that a good thing?

Telltale games recently revealed details behind Minecraft: Story Mode, yet another episodic adventure game from the studio. Telltale has been releasing games episodically for years, but ever since the release of The Walking Dead: Season One, the studio’s games have surged in popularity and have grown to intertwine with more and more established and popular series. But will gamers grow tired of this “Telltale” style? Or is gameplay not the real reason we play these games, of which the following  are currently being produced or confirmed to be in the works with possible sequels to other existence franchises as well:

  • Tales From the Borderlands
  • Game of Thrones
  • Minecraft: Story Mode
  • The Walking Dead: Season Three
  • The Walking Dead: Michonne mini series
  • At least one original IP
  • A partnership with Marvel
  • Previously released: The Walking Dead Season One, Season Two and A Wolf Among Us and various other franchises: Back to the Future, Monkey Island, Jurassic Park, etc.

We must ask if gameplay is really the star of the Telltale games. Some claim that these games don’t deserve the title of “video game,” as all you do is move and click buttons to make choices. While this leads to a whole other discussion, it is fair to say that many players choose to play such games for the story and for the characters, which also means Telltale may be okay. Perhaps the developer is assuming players will pick and choose to follow only series that they personally enjoy and not be inundated with playing through the same style of game over and over. Are we not more or less just watching an episode of a TV show that we interact with?

But the ultimate worry is the production of the games. While these games are typically released in five episode drops over the course of a year or more, as more and more are produced, will the time between episodes in a particular series grow even larger? Too much time between episodes can detract from the experience, and some may ultimately lose interest in a series altogether. On the other hand, players could be oversaturated with too many franchises. Trying to keep up with every episode could become overwhelming, and possibly eventually boring. Additionally, Telltale produces their games for a large number of platforms too: PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PC, Vita, iOS and OS X, and sometimes the games don’t run on every platform as well as they should. Adding more and more games to produce could affect performance even further, when they perhaps should be dedicating time to making sure each  existing game runs well.

Perhaps with an original IP and its future partnership with Marvel, the company will change it up and add a few twists to its “press x or y” formula and keep things fresh. Many fault annual series like Assassin’s Creed and Call of Duty for releasing each year and growing stale, but does Telltale get a pass if each game has a different face? Should Telltale take a step back and give players a chance to miss them?

What do you think? Do you play Telltale games episode by episode, prefer to wait for the whole thing, or are have you had enough of the studio’s formula? Let us know below, that is, if you can make it the past the following emotional photo.

  • Steve Wright

    Ultimately as long as people continue to enjoy Telltale’s games I see no reason for them to stop making them. I’ve played a few and from what I can tell they are enjoyable stories and experiences, but I agree that the premise and the rinse/repeat nature of their games is in danger of wearing thin.

    • Mike Nitroy

      Agreed, I just think their games often run quite poorly. I think ultimately it comes down to picking which of their series you want to stick with and not try to play every episode of everything.

      • Steve Wright

        Yeah I agree that technically sometimes their games aren’t great. Although what you said about picking a series is actually a plus in regard to how many different types of games they make. I mean they’re all the same formula so you could argue that they are the same game with different branded skins, but you know it’s got to be a positive that someone who doesn’t like The Walking Dead can still get into a Telltale game because they like Minecraft.

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