After just over two months, Telltale is back with the third episode of The Wolf Among Us, adding more twists and turns to an already convoluted plot.
What Is It?
The Wolf Among Us is an adaptation of the DC graphic novel “Fables,” a grim look at the lives of famous fairy tale characters as they’re forced to live in the modern and mundane world of Fabletown with the likes of the Big Bad Wolf (or Bigby) as its sheriff and Snow White as sort of a trusty sidekick. It’s kind of like the ABC series Once Upon a Time, except with obviously more mature themes.
Unlike the previous episode, A Crooked Mile starts immediately following the events in Smoke and Mirrors. This was actually found out the hard way because while waiting for the “Previously on The Wolf Among Us” opening sequence to end, I ended up missing a quick action sequence because I was going through my text messages.
That part aside, it just goes to show that when you’re playing a game like this, you really shouldn’t be doing anything else.
Why Should I Care?
With games like the point-and-click Back to the Future episodic series, the seven episodes over two seasons of The Walking Dead, and two episodes of The Wolf Among Us already released, players on the third episode should feel right at home with how the game plays. The issue here is that The Wolf Among Us seems to have followed a very specific sequence of play.
The game’s pilot episode included a confrontation followed by an action sequence, an investigation sequence, and another fight before arriving at an expected cliffhanger. The second episode took more of a narrative tone in order to give a better background of the game’s characters, but it still seemed to follow the pilot episode’s sequence.
While A Crooked Mile also does seem to sort of follow that same systematic approach, it’s also done a fair job at sort of keeping it fresh. In a short amount of time, Bigby finds himself back at Crane’s office again to dig up more dirt in order to take the next step. Previous episodes simply had Bigby going to the magic mirror in order to get the whereabouts of specific people, but now that it’s no longer an option because of it being broken, players have to do a little more to put two and two together.
The problem here is that it really isn’t a little more. It’s just a matter of finding the right points and clicking them. Upon count there was only one real puzzle during the point-and-click explorative and investigative scenes, and it was probably an accidental puzzle at that. There were also a lot of cases where Bigby had a lot of things to investigate, but because I immediately found what I needed, no further exploration was required which was unfortunate because I wanted to see what everything else was.
The one silver lining in this episode is the internal difficulty players will likely have when it comes to the decisions or things Bigby has to make and say. Oftentimes, as Bigby, I often said nothing, but it was mainly because a lot of the options took place during monologues and other people’s arguments. Sure, I can butt in and interrupt, but I really wanted to hear what the characters all had to say.
What Makes It Worth My Time And Money?
The main reason why anybody will recommend playing the game is because of its plot. If you’ve started and finished both episodes one and two, you really don’t have a choice but to play the third.
But is it worth the money? While $5 isn’t that much, I’d probably pocket it for the time being.
Yes, the episode does a few things differently. It takes a similar route to the first episode by forcing you to investigate one area first before checking out the other, and it also features an imaginary clock to make it seem like you have a limited time to finish a couple given tasks.
The story is getting better, but the game is starting to reach for straws.
One puzzle, one action sequence, and one bizarre plot twist featuring a hardly known fable sounds like a good $3, not $5.