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Review: The Walking Dead [PS Vita]

Review: The Walking Dead [PS Vita]

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead from Telltale has been out for some time now for every device with one of the most recent being the PS Vita. Now I know what you are thinking “is there a reason I should get the game again?” Well with the PS Vita comes a few extra hardware additions that just were not available on the console or PC so let’s dig in and see if your third or fourth play through will be worth it on Sony’s handheld device. In case you missed out on the basics of the game, such as story, feel free to check out our original review of the console version to get caught up.

Hated

One of the bigger features for this version of The Walking Dead was the ability to use the touch screen to interact with the game. Instead of moving the camera stick to locations you could just point and touch. Unfortunately this also goes for the movement of the game. It is like they took the iOS version and just slapped it on to allow for the touch screen. If it wasn’t for the fact that there are physical controls on the Vita that I could use for the more mundane controls this would have been fine, but I had to use my Vita like an awkward tablet and wish that the controls I could see just to the left and right of the screen could be used to move and look about. This was a feature I turned off quickly because I didn’t want to play a tablet version of the game; I wanted to play the Vita version of the game.

This brings me to the next gripe I have, changing the settings. You get two different versions of the settings for the game depending on if you are on the loading screen or in the game. Not too uncommon except that some of the options, like turning off the touch screen controls, can only be accessed from the home screen before you even begin play. The tips during the load screens didn’t help with this either as they state that you can turn it off at ANY TIME. Any time really meaning “any time you are on the home screen and have not started any form of play.” Again this pushes the feeling that the touch screen was just a re-purposed tablet version made to look like a PS Vita addition.

Loved

Once the touch screen options were disabled for me, this is where the love of the game came right back. Even though I have played through the game multiple times already and discovered that no choice really does alter the story of the game in any meaningful way, I still loved it. It is still exceptionally written so that I enjoy hearing the story of the game for the fourth time through in my case. The twists don’t have as much of an impact, sure, but I don’t feel like I am wasting my time hearing it again. It’s just like any of those cult movies you can watch a hundred times and still fully enjoy every minute of it.

In addition to this and this is partially the trophy whore in me, I enjoyed the fact that it was treated as a standalone version in the aspect of playing again for trophies as well as choice statistics. Where re-plays on the console really didn’t do much outside of let me relive the story and compare to what I already know, the Vita iteration let me feel like I was playing the game again fresh without having to load up another user account and deleting all of my old data. It is a bit self-serving, but it is one of the things I loved about getting to play it again on my Vita, outside of getting another title to actually play on the damn thing.

Overall

If you enjoyed the story and want to have a fresh play through and collect all of the trophies again, then by all means pick up The Walking Dead again on the PS Vita. Or if you haven’t even played it once before and have a Vita you would be doing yourself a favor in picking up this amazing game. If you have already beaten and the thought of having the game mobile isn’t priority then I’d say you would be better off just keeping to the primary console or PC version of the game. The touch controls is really the only thing different I found between the versions and it’s much better on the big screen.

The Walking Dead was developed and published by Telltale Games for the PS Vita on August 20th, 2013. A copy of the game was provided by the publisher for reviewing purposes.

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