"You're either living or you're not. You ain't little. You ain't a girl, you ain't a boy. You ain't strong or smart. You're alive."
—Chuck, "Long Road Ahead" (Season One)
The Walking Dead: The Game is an episodic series by Telltale Games that began in 2012. Similar to Jurassic Park: The Game, you guide your character in an adventure game setting through a relatively linear series of events dotted with minor gameplay puzzles and a few quick time events. Unlike Jurassic Park, it has also gained a reputation as one of the most well-written and emotionally wrenching games of its time due to its grey and gray morality, sadistic choices, and absolutely brutal player punches.The game takes place in the same universe as the comic, but begins shortly after the outbreak this time, instead of weeks afterwards.At the outset of Season One, Lee Everett is a prisoner handcuffed in the back of a police car traveling down a highway in Georgia when an accident involving a weird shambling manon the road gets him loose. Shortly afterward, he meets a young girl named Clementine, and the pair have to work with others to survive, all while hoping Lee's dark and troubled past doesn't cause everyone to hate him, shun him, or worse, feed him to the zombies.Season Two follows Clementine on her own, over two years into the zombie apocalypse. Slightly older and a lot wiser, she must survive in a world where adults still view her as a kid and may look to take advantage of her.Going along with the theme of the franchise, while the zombies are ostensibly the problem, the real issue is the remnants of humanity, and the forging and maintaining of relationships with other survivors. Almost all of your actions will have consequences in how people perceive you, and it will be up to you as to how helpful you'll be, and whom you'll help.In between the two seasons is a DLC episode entitled 400 Days: an anthology special which focuses on different individuals and their own stories as they cope with the zombie outbreak at various points over a four hundred day period.Dedicated Shout-Out page here.See also The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct: the second Walking Dead game, which is based soley on the TV series.Be warned: with all episodes of Season One, 400 Days and the first four episodes of Season Two now released, this article will have spoilers, and some may be unmarked. Proceed at your own discretion.
This video game contains the following tropes:
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Acquitted Too Late: Ben confesses far, far too late that he was the one stealing supplies for the bandits, after Carley or Doug had paid for this with their lives. Then again, Lilly's behavior didn't exactly make him eager to admit it - especially when she put a gun to his head.
Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: The chat with the man who kidnapped Clementine happens right after you fight your way through a horde of walkers armed with a shard of glass and a meat cleaver. Or just the meat cleaver, if you took off Lee's arm.
Action Girl: This seems to be a prerequisite for survival in the zombie apocalypse for most of the female characters in this game.
Carley, who manages to be the second most badass survivor in the group next to the playable character, thanks to her crack shooting skills. She's also the most likely and consistent candidate to pull a Big Damn Heroes moment and save Lee whenever he's in trouble.
Lilly, who routinely fought for the leadership role of the group with Kenny, who was explicitly stated to have served in the Air Force before things went to hell. She can potentially save Lee a good couple of times depending on your choices.
Molly, who the group meets when they finally reach Savannah, who seems like she'd be more at home in some zombie spin off of Uncharted or Assassin's Creed rather than a point and click, the way she traverses the city by roof top and elegantly dances around the Walkers to bury her ice-climbing axe in their craniums.
Adult Fear: In Episode 3, when Duck is bitten, Kenny refuses to believe his son will die, Katjaa realizes that her medical knowledge cannot save their son and Lee has a nightmare about the same thing happening to Clementine. Then Episode 4 ends with Clementine kidnapped and Lee bitten (which can be is of course a terminal disease).
Aluminum Christmas Trees: A lot of players don't believe that the ceramic found inside a spark plug can easily break car windows. This can be done in real life.
An Arm and a Leg: The only way to free David from the bear trap is cut off his leg. Can also happen to Lee, with his bitten arm, depending on your choices. The depressing thing is that this does absolutely nothing to halt the inevitable in either case.
And Your Reward Is Clothes: Lee upgrades clothing in Episode 2 to fit the season, and Clementine gets a hoodie if you assist in stealing from the car.
Anyone Can Die: It wouldn't be The Walking Dead otherwise. It's guaranteed that you won't get through an episode without at least a couple of the main characters kicking the bucket.
Episode 1: Shawn and Doug or Carley
Episode 2: Mark and Larry
Episode 3: Doug/Carley, Katjaa, Duck and possibly Lilly
Episode 4: Chuck, and possibly Molly or Ben depending on your choices
Episode 5: Lee and the Stranger. Ben will also die if he hasn't already
Artistic License - Physics: The group needs to find a car battery for their boat, which is all well and good. But even small car batteries weigh nearly forty pounds, which makes Molly putting it in her backpack and doing parkour just a little too hard to believe.
The people of Crawford. If you believe what Molly, Vernon and Brie say about the place, they really had it coming.
Larry in episode 2, considering he left you for dead to a horde of Walkers in Episode 1 (even after you saved his life by getting him medicine for his heart condition). Lilly herself becomes this in Episode 3 after she shoots Carley or Doug.
Arc Words: "In the end, family's all that matters."
Art Evolution: Comparing the animation of Episode 1 to Episode 5, the characters move much more vividly, and the animations themselves aren't repeated nearly as much.
Bait and Switch: Episode 2 is initially set up to make the player believe the bandits are going to be the villains of episode 2. They even feature as prominent villains in the episode 2 "preview" you get upon completing episode 1, with the St. John family featured in the trailer as yet another batch of heroic bystanders like the Greenes were. As it turns out, while the bandits are assholes, the real villains of episode 2 are the St. John brothers and mother themselves. And later, depending on what you choose to believe of the Stranger's story in episode 5, you might be the real villain of that episode.
Not as obvious as most examples of this trope, but one of the Bandits in Episode 3 gets attacked by a zombie that follows him through the entrance he made to the Motor Inn. Given that only a few seconds pass between him entering, and the fact that he'd have to cross the street to get there, it's odd that he wouldn't have noticed the zombie on the way in, never mind take the time to kill it (or his fellow bandits to pick it off beforehand).
Also in episode 3, three zombies in the abandoned railway station appear from seemingly nowhere. Given the size of the room, it seems strange that none of them were visible from the door.
Especially bad in the sewer level during episode 4, where Lee can walk straight into walkers the player doesn't see because of the camera angle. The worst is when the camera angle hides that there is one holding on to his foot, instead looking like it's just stuck in a grate.
There's a Jump Scare later on in episode 4 when Lee is revisiting the shack in Crawford he used to get over to the garage. A zombie hidden from the player's eyes randomly attacks Lee out of nowhere despite the fact that he probably could've smelled the zombie the second he walked inside.
Also in episode 4, there is a hidden boat in the unlocked shed behind the house the team uses for shelter in Savannah, and no one seems to think to look inside when they first arrive for no other reason than the door is facing away from the camera. Of course, it wouldn't have helped them get through the locked back door, but it seems odd that no one, especially Lee, would think to peek inside, considering Lee eventually has to dig up a rotting dog carcass to get inside the house.
Used during Episode 2, where if you kill the Big Bad(s) the Morality Pet will be scared of you, and if you try to save Larry, your former best friend (assuming certain choices) will throw a hissy fit and hate you. And if you want to please Clementine, you better not take that delicious food in that car.
Putting certain people out of their misery can result in Lee getting scolded for it or, in the case of Episode 3, alerting the Walkers and resulting in them having less time to get supplies.
Better to Die than Be Killed: It's The Walking Dead. Plenty of examples found in the game, including a zombie infectee, one of the older survivors, an unnamed couple found dead in bed...justified, however, because if someone chooses to die, they can at least blow their brains out and thus not come back as a walker. Dying at the hands of the walkers, on the other hand, is not only unpleasant but all but guarantees that the person will come back as a walker and possibly kill other people. Clementine can kill Lee at the end if the player chooses.
Betty and Veronica: Depending on how you choose to interact with them, Lilly and Carly could potentially be implied romantic interests with Lee. With Lilly being a jaded and insecure Betty, and Carly being the slightly more glamorous city girl Veronica. Nothing comes of this in either case.
Big "NO!": Understandably used by Lilly when her dad's face is crushed right in front of her Also used by Kenny when Katjaa kills herself.
Episode 1 ends with the survivors at a Motor Inn, which is pretty safe, and barring the power going out, they're fairly set, but a few survivors left and one dies due to you being unable to save them, which continues to haunt the characters afterward.
Episode 2 has the characters finally get food and supplies after almost running out, but Larry was killed by Kenny in a fit of paranoia, and depending on your choice, damaging your friendship with Kenny due to trying to save Larry, or causing Lilly to hate you by assisting in the murder of her father, along with the death of Mark.
In Episode 3, the characters finally make it to Savannah and get some new survivors, but Carley/Doug, Katjaa, and Duck are dead, Lilly either leaving the group or left on the road, and you find out that Clementine has been talking to someone without Lee or anyone else noticing.
At the end of Episode 5 Clementine is saved and makes it to safety, but Lee had to either be shot in the head by her before he could turn into a Walker or be left behind. Either way, the game doesn't exactly end on a happy note, though it does give off a sense of hope.
Black Dude Dies First: Averted, the only black guy in the group is the protagonist. In fact, even if the player gets him killed while playing as him, he's still never the actual first death: the very earliest in the game Lee can die is when he's attacked by a zombie after the police car crashes — and that's after the car crash kills the driver first, turning the driver into a zombie. So even if the player get Lee killed right away, he's the second to die in the whole game, not the first.
Blatant Lies: Clementine invokes this on a few occasions what with her being just a kid.
Duck: Daddy says it's called a salt lick. Clementine: Yeah, but don't lick it. It's gross. Lee: Did you lick it? Clementine: (beat) I don't know...
Blood Is the New Black: Lee ends up like this in Episode 1 after either bludgeoning Clementine's babysitter to death or slipping in a pool of blood. In Episode 2, depending upon your choices, poor Lilly can get splattered with her own father's blood. If this happens, they remain like this for the rest of the chapter. And both Lee and Clementine end up like this in episode 5 as part of a ploy to get past the walkers.
Bolivian Army Ending: The game ends with Clementine wandering through a field and seeing two people on a hill who might be Christa and Omid, and the fate of Vernon's group is never addressed.Although part of Vernon's group is reintroduced in 400 Days, but not the man himself and a few others.
Book Ends: Lee begins and ends the game in handcuffs, if you choose to let him turn. Also he and Clementine meet each other as she hands him a hammer to kill a zombified babysitter, and shortly before he dies, Lee hands her a baseball bat to kill a zombified security guard. It also starts and ends with Lee supporting himself on something as he makes his way towards a walker who used to be a cop. The very first achievement you get in Episode One is called, " Out of the frying pan...," and the very first achievement you get in Episode Five is, "Into the fire."
Bottomless Magazines: Averted: Running out of ammo is what can possibly kill Carley near the end of Episode One, when she cannot reach her extra ammo in her purse. And used in Episode 2, as the bandits that ambush you early on have numerous arrows, and will use over fifty by the end of the ambush, and they don't even have to load them, as soon as one arrow flies out another comes again. Honestly, there are several examples of this trope being played straight and averted. Episode 1, for example, has Lee loading a police officer's shotgun to kill his reanimated corpse. You're screwed if you miss that shot. Episodes 2 and 4, on the other hand, have moments where Lee has to open fire on groups of bandits/undead closing in on him. You can take as many shots as you like as long as no one reaches you. And averted in Episode 5 when the whole party announces how many bullets they have, and after they've all fired, that's it.
Break the Cutie: In Episode 4 high-schooler Ben feels so guilty and useless he asks you to let him die. And at the end of Episode 5 Clementine must either leave Lee, her protector, handcuffed to a radiator to turn into a walker, or put a bullet in his head to save him the fate.
Breaking the Fourth Wall: Talking to Kenny five times in the bedroom right before his or Ben's death will net you a cutscene of Lee extolling the virtues of a Telltale employee's mustache.
Brick Joke: In episode 2, Kenny asked Lee if he knew how to pick locks because he's "...well...urban." Naturally, Lee get's offended by his remark. Near the end of episode 3, Lee and Clementine finds a lock door, and while he gives her a boast, he thinks that now would be a good time to... uhh... pick the lock.
But for Me, It Was Tuesday: In Episode 5, the mysterious man reveals the group's choice to take his supplies from his station wagon killed his wife and daughter, meaning they indirectly took two lives and drove a man insane through what they considered finders-keepers.
But Now I Must Go: Glenn at the end of Episode 1. This is so he can find his friends in Atlanta. In Episode 3, Lilly will leave the group by stealing the RV even if you choose not to abandon her on the roadside after she kills Carley/Doug. Her fate is unknown as Kenny comments that she isn't very likely to be able to drive more than 30 miles, as the RV's radiator is worn out and close to overheating.. Episode 4 has Molly. This could be out of a desire to not split the group up.
But Thou Must: You are often given three options or silence as a reply to timed responses. If you pit Hershel against Shawn in an argument about fortifying the farm, you have four replies that can time out twice before the game forces you to choose one, taking Shawn's side.
When you try to save David at the beginning of Episode 2, you are given a variety of items to seemingly release the trap with. They of course all fail, leaving the choice only to leave him or cut through his leg, which is a very gory process.
In the same vein, more pragmatic players might elect to simply leave Ben and the others in order to avoid the possibility of adding members to the group and further draining its resources. Despite dialogue options to this effect, the game forces you to attempt (successfully or not) to free David, thus allowing Ben to join and making it impossible to avoid Lilly predictably chewing you out for bringing in more mouths to feed.
Also in Episode 2 is the option to turn down the offer of food and safety from the St. Johns. Since it makes no sense for Lee to turn it down, second time players trying to avoid the nightmarish plot that results see Lee get outvoted, before Clementine's hunger changes his opinion.
Again in Episode 2, the game does this if you try to return to dinner without investigating, or try to head back down stairs after starting to investigate; the game pretty much demands the player continue by having Mark audibly scream out for help and bang on the floor.
And one more time in Episode 2: Think you can avoid the whole mess with the Stranger by refusing to steal the supplies from the station wagon? Lee and Clementine will just stand aside while the rest of the group takes them anyway.
All the sadistic choices count too, as you are forced to choose, and whatever you choose, someone is going to end up dead or really pissed at Lee.
At times, all the dialogue options you're offered for a given choice amount to basically the same sentiment, just phrased slightly differently.
At the end of Episode 4, Clem asks Lee if they have time to search for her parents, and the four responses amount to "No", "Sorry but no", "Hell no", and "[Lie]", forcing the player to invoke the major cliffhanger where she goes missing.
In Episode 3, after Duck gets bitten, Katjaa will always be the one who goes to Mercy Kill him, no matter what Lee tries to say. Naturally, this results in her suicide.
Call Back: At the end of Episode 2, Carley finds some batteries and gives them to Lee. His response, recalling Carley's radio troubles in the previous episode.
Astute players may notice a certain modified bear trap inside the slaughterhouse in Episode 2.
Depending on what word Lee used to describe the smell inside the Barn in Episode 1, Clem will repeat the exact same word to Duck in Episode 2 to describe a similar smell.
In "Long Road Ahead", Lee can examine the arrows on the outer perimeter fired by the bandits during their attack in the previous episode.
Carley's problems with batteries come up again in "Long Road Ahead" when you find a broken object and she asks Lee if the batteries are backwards.
Upon arriving in Savannah, the achievement is called "Georgia's First City," referencing its foundation in 1733. After you escape from the overrun Crawford, the achievement is called "Georgia's Last City."
In Episode 3 Lee cuts Clementine's hair to ensure she won't get grabbed by the walkers easily. Shortly before Lee succumbs to his bite he can give Clem a last piece of advice.
Lee: "Keep that hair short."
In Episode 4, you meet Molly, who uses church bells to attract hordes away from where she's looting. At the beginning of episode 5, Lee uses another bell tower to do the same trick to escape the hospital.
When Clem is unable to shoot a walker in the train station, Lee can say she just needs to learn to pull the trigger. If she's the one who kills The Stranger, Lee will comment that he wishes she hadn't had to learn to pull the trigger.
The Cavalry: Sometimes your allies will step in to save Lee at critical moments. However, not all of these are Cutscene rescues; depending on your personal relationship with someone, they may opt not to help out.
The Cameo: Both Glenn and Hershel show up in Episode 1.
Cliffhanger: Chapter 4 ends on a doozy of one: Clementine goes missing and Lee gets ambushed by a walker while searching for her and bitten on the left arm. Lee goes off to look for her - either alone, with some survivors, and maybe ALL of the survivors - and head to Vernon's hideaway thinking he took her, but find it's empty. Just when all seems lost, the walkie springs to life with Clem on the end, who's promptly replaced by her kidnapper. No matter what response you pick, you never hear Lee speak it because he finds himself speechless before the screen cuts to black. What's more, there no preview of the next episode either. Episode 5 ends on a minor one: After the credits, we see that Clementine was able to get out of Savannah but didn't find Omid and Christa. Then she suddenly notices two people in the distance and the game ends. This ended up being a Sequel Hook for the second season.
The cane that belonged to Lee's dad. A bit of Foreshadowing and Call Back: The cane once again protects the store, even without its owner.
In Episode 2:
Depending on who arrives, either Doug's laser pointer or Carley's gun is used to distract Andrew St. John before he can shoot Lee.
Larry's 60 cents are used to unscrew an air conditioner from the wall, in order to create an escape route.
Lee can notice that a white arrow in a walker might have been used by the St. Johns, but it unusually doesn't reappear in the plot if you take it. Cue the fence turning on, and a white arrow hits Mark from further down the fence before the bandits start attacking with red colored arrows.
When Lee enters the barn, he'll ask about the salt licks. A couple of scenes later, Kenny kills Larry with one. Just in case the player didn't examine them while in the meat locker.
Chekhov's Gunman: Hey, remember that station wagon with the supplies at the end of Episode 2? The one that everyone was pretty sure had been abandoned? Turns out it wasn't, and the owner is the one responsible for kidnapping Clementine.
Chekhov's Skill: At the beginning of "Long Road Ahead", Clementine demonstrates to Lee how she made a pencil imprint of a leaf due to remembering it from school. Lee remembers this, and uses the same technique to get the imprint of an engine operation diagram when the group discovers the train.
Children Are a Waste: The Social Darwinist inhabitants of the Crawford enclave seem to think so, with their policy of no mouths to feed who cannot provide back for the community. In a case of Darwinian Irony, the structural exclusion of children and elderly combined with their isolationist policies would lead to them eventually falling apart when its their members are too old to fend for themselves anymore and their population of young and healthy people dwindles. If you watch the camcorder tapes in the nurse's office, you find out that, like much else in the game, someone decided two choices wasn't enough. A woman who'd gotten pregnant and was faced with the decision of leaving Crawford or having an abortion snapped and stabbed the doctor before running away. He presumably turned and Crawford was destroyed from the inside.
Cluster F-Bomb: Kenny does that in Episode 3 when they find a truck hanging from a bridge, blocking exactly where the train has to pass through.
Other than that, to sum it all up in one whole game, it takes almost 5 minutes just to count how many swearing words in Season One.
Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: The subtitles. Each character (With the exception of Shawn, Hershel, Glenn, and other minor characters which are grayish off-white) has their own individually colored subtitles.
Lee is white.
Clementine is light pink.
Kenny is light green.
Katjaa is orange.
Duck is yellowish beige.
Lilly is forest green.
Larry is red.
Carley is purple.
Doug is powder blue.
Ben is gray.
Chuck is greenish yellow.
The Mysterious Voice is reddish brown.
Also two minor characters who are killed off shortly after they're introduced also have color-coded subtitles.
The unnamed police officer is light blue.
Irene is dark pink.
Other short-lived characters use the same white font as Lee, for instance Mark. Don't get too attached to these people.
The background for each episode's achievements share the same colors. Green for episode 1, blue for 2, purple for 3, orange for 4 and red for 5.
The player can indulge in this at the end of Episode 2 if they leave Andrew the only remaining John, tell him his mother and brother are both dead, beat the crap out of him and then leave him screaming in the mud.
Same to Danny, leaving him alive so that he can instead be eaten alive by zombies.
In "Long Road Ahead", Lee can choose to leave Lilly stranded by the side of the road (with a lone walker closing in on her) as a result of her killing Doug/Carley.
Dark and Troubled Past: Lee killed a state Senator who he caught in bed with his wife. The worst part is that a couple of characters know this. You can let one of these characters die in Episode 1; the other dies in Episode 2 regardless of your choices. Becomes a big plot point in Episode 3: Lilly reveals your past to the group after she murders Carley/Doug, although you can tell group members beforehand.
Darker and Edgier: Every episode goes more and more into darker and disturbing material, but Episode 5 takes the cake. Lee's group gets whittled down, has their only way of escape stolen, and Lee dies after a traumatized Clem has to leave him to turn or shoot him. The general behavior of the group shifts as well, Lee, who can have the most optimistic lines of the game depending on the choices, turns into a determined and angry man who is pessimistic and doesn't care about his own death. Kenny descends into alcoholism and depression, finally gaining hope literally minutes before he is eaten alive, Christa has no major signs of her change, but at one point she downs nearly an entire bottle of liquor seemingly not caring that it's bad for her baby, and Clementine ends up wandering lonely and depressed over both her parents and Lee's death
Dead Hat Shot: There's one in Episode 3 as part of a Non-Standard Game Over. If you can't convince Kenny to stop the train then Lee will return alone to the boxcar. He'll see Clementine's hat lying on the floor, just before he gets murdered by Zombie Duck.
Deconstruction: The game deconstructs just how screwed a normal person would be if the government disappeared and zombies and crazy people started turning up all over the place. You're more likely to die getting everyone else killed then killing a horde of zombies. Ben may be counted since many fans agree that he is the most realistic.
While walking to the St. John's Dairy Farm in Episode 2, you can say that Lilly, Kenny, Lee, or that the group is a democracy when Andy asks about the leader, and then when talking to Brenda alongside Andy, you can go back on what you said and Andy will notice that you contradicted yourself and call you on it.
If you help Kenny kill Larry, but spare Danny St. John, Lilly calls you out on your hypocrisy.
If you've taken the time to look at the St. John's farm, Lee will try and talk some sense into Brenda by using what he knows about the farm and its inhabitants in the dialogue options when she's got Katjaa at gunpoint.
Upon entering the morgue, you can try to calm things down or act violent and dangerous, and later in the conversation make outright threats. However, if you act calm at first and then make threats, Vernon calls your bluff.
During the mansion attack in Episode 5 everyone says how many bullets are left in their guns. If you fire all but one, you can give it to Kenny when he tries to help Ben after his fall, so he can Mercy Kill Ben and himself. Otherwise he will only have the one bullet from the gun taken from a dead couple found just before.
In the same episode, if you choose not to tell Clementine what to do with you, she'll make the choice herself to either leave without killing you or kill you to prevent you from becoming a walker.
Doomed by Canon/Saved by Canon: The characters from the comics and those from the video game largely don't overlap, but the ones that do mostly appear in Episode 1: If you've read the comics, you'll know that Shawn will die and become a zombie, which happens during the episode, and Herschel and Glenn will live and later appear in the comics. This was originally the case of Lily, but thanks to a Retcon has now been confirmed as a different character.
Downer Ending: Episode 5 ends with all of Lee's group dead, with the only members left with a possibility of being alive preparing to go through a city filled with thousands of walkers. Lee slowly dies from either blood loss, the zombie infection, or a mix of both, all while he guides a tearful Clementine through how to survive without him. Afterwards, Clementine either has to let her surrogate father and mentor turn into a walker, or kill him herself. The only thing that saves it from being horrifically depressing is the post-credits scene that shows Clementine made it out of Savannah safely, and the last scene of the game hints that she might have found Omid and Christa.
Empathic Environment: In Episode 2 the weather starts out calm, but grows cloudier and has low, ominous thunder off in the distance when Lee starts investigating the St. Johns' suspicious behavior, culminating with a Battle in the Rain at the end of the episode. Also, in Episode 5 shortly before Clem and Lee encounter Clementine's undead parents and the bite kills Lee, a storm seems to be gathering.
Establishing Series Moment: By the time you reach the Drugstore in the first episode, you're treated to an argument between your group of survivors and another, summarizing one of the themes of the franchise and showing that you're going to really need to work on your relationships with the survivors.
Everybody's Dead, Dave: By the end of Episode 5, everyone save Clem and possibly Omid and Christa are dead. Including Lee.
Eye Scream: Lee digs his thumbs into the eyes of a zombie trying to kill him.
Final Girl: Clementine is the only party member who definitely survives season 1.
Follow the Leader: Within less than two weeks after Episode 2 was released, Activison announced a first person shooter based on The Walking Dead (yes, they are making a game that Telltale said that Walking Dead wouldn't be) featuring our favorite rednecks, the Dixon brothers, and promises "choices" just like the Telltale game. Fans of the Telltale series didn't hold out hope. And they were right not to if the Metacritic scores (32 for the Activision game, 92 for Telltale's) are anything to go by.
Foreshadowing: "It goes to show, people will up and go mad when they think their life is over."
Or, if you continue trying to examine the police radio when a bunch of cops are rushing to the city (to deal with the zombie apocalypse and all) you'll get "You'll have to learn to stop worrying about things you can't control."
If you watch the traffic while in the police car, you might spot Kenny's car or the stranger's car.
If Hershel catches you in a lie, he advises "becoming a better liar." At future times when the player can choose to lie, they are generally more successful.
Kenny says to Lee at the start of episode 2 that he will eventually have to decide which side he is on meaning him or Lilly, guess what you have to do in the meat locker scene.
Kenny says about Larry, in Episode 1: "I'm gonna kill him, Kat." He does so in Episode 2.
Mark does a few times in Episode 2. First, he states that he wouldn't want to be alone in a room with Larry, then says he's so hungry he could eat anything. He also says that he's worried he might become dinner himself. Of course, the former is a dilemma Lee, Lilly, Kenny and Clementine find themselves in when faced with the possibility of an undead Larry, while the latter, Mark finds that he is dinner. Mark's line could also be taken another way, as by the end of the episode, he's a zombie, and ends up taking a bite out of Brenda St. John's neck.
If you choose to save David in Episode 2, you'll have to chop his leg off to save him from a bear trap with no release hatch, and he'll eventually die from blood loss and reanimate. Later on in the episode, you find out who modified the Bear Traps and Mark dies from blood loss due to the fact that he had his legs chopped off to be served as food. Depending on exactly how farTelltale planned ahead, this could also be foreshadowing Lee (potentially) amputating his own arm in an effort to avoid becoming a Walker. It works about as well there as it does here.
Also in Episode 2 inquiring about the empty stables will have Andy mention that their only cow is the pregnant one as the other cows died of sickness, hinting that maybe beef isn't the meat of choice. Additionally, checking the back-right stable will reveal a wheelbarrow of spare clothing that smells awful.
Again in Episode 2, several areas of the dairy's past point to suspicious activity. The bandits shout that "It ain't right! We had a deal!" and that the dairy "Fucked with [them]."; considering they're obviously shouting about the supplies, and there's a large amount of dairy boxes left at the camp Jolene took, it's almost like the problem they're having with the supplies wasn't the amount, but what they realized it was. Also, when first arriving, Andy will reveal people have stayed before when pressed, and trying to head for the barn before fixing the fence will prompt him to anxiously question why you're heading for it.
In Episode 3, Long Road Ahead, Katjaa delivers this line shorty before shooting herself in the head, because they have to shoot her son in the head before he can come back as a walker:
Katjaa: Kenny, I love you very much. I love our son more than life itself.
Chuck talks to Lee about preparing Clementine, because there may be a point where Lee won't be able to protect Clementine anymore.
From Bad to Worse: There's a brief bit at the end of Episode 1 through to the beginning of Episode 2 where things improve—they get their motel fortress set up and life is fairly stable if precarious. At any other given time, though, you are merely trading one bad situation for an even worse situation, only occasionally finding moments of stability.
Game-Breaking Bug: The game sometimes imports choices from Episode 1 and Episode 4 incorrectly, randomizing those missing flags. Sometimes if you give a fifth chest compression during the CPR sequence on the PS3 version, the game repeats everything twice and gives wonky camera angles, requiring turning off the system to avoid save file corruption. Although there's a rough fix for it (that needs to be constantly reapplied and doesn't seem to work quite perfectly), the Steam version seems to wipe your save files post-Episode 1 whenever you close the game. And the disc release of the game suffers from massive lag on some systems, making the quick-time events nearly or completely impossible to pass.
[Lee needs to weld metal over a large drop] Lee: [hands welder] Here. The weak portion of the coupling is out of my reach. Omid: You think it'll be in mine? Lee: No, but I'm gonna dangle you over that ledge. Omid: The hell you are! [Cut to Omid dangling and welding] Omid: God, you're a real son of a bitch, aren't ya?!
Gosh Darn It to Heck!: Clementine reacts with a dismayed gasp if Lee says the word "shit". If he says "manure" instead, she'll smile. Brought up in Episode 2, where what Clementine says in the barn relates to what you told her in the earlier barn, if you say "Shit" you get this gem when Duck asks about the smell.
The conflict between Lilly and Kenny in Episode 2. Both have their merits and flaws, and they represent order and chaos respectively.
In the end, the Stranger is just another survivor who lost everything, and gives sympathetic reasons for his attitude toward you. But by this point, he is completely fucking insane.
Guilt-Based Gaming: In Episode 2, Clementine will witness if you kill Larry or any of the brothers. In Episode 3, if you chose to not kill the girl who was bitten and is being attacked by zombies, you have much more time to get supplies, all while she screams in agony. And then she suddenly stops.
Half Truth: Lee can give plenty of these to the other survivors when they question him about his past. Giving people these early may bite you in the butt later.
Hammerspace: Characters, mostly Lee, will pull out items or objects from their pockets, sometimes ones that will be larger then their pockets. Some of the more egregious offenders include: an acetylene torch and its tank, a fire axe, and a car battery. There are some subversions to this as well, like the tools at the train- Lee can only carry one of them at a time.
Heroic BSOD: In Episode 1, if you let Clementine die, Lee just stares in shock while a walker attacks him from behind. Kenny is in the throes of one through the entire second half of Episode 3 after losing his wife and son.
Heroic Sacrifice: In Episode 5, depending on your choices, Kenny sacrifices himself either to save Christa or Ben (if he survived Episode 4). It's an offscreen death, though, so it's still possible he'll show up in Season 2.
In Episode 4, after Ben ran off and abandoned Clementine when they were surrounded by walkers, Chuck runs to her aid and tells the group to move on while he holds back the walkers. Later on, Lee finds his corpse in the sewers.
Hidden Depths: Larry. So hidden as to be almost invisible, but they're there. Lee as well, even if he is played as a Nice Guy, he still shows some moments of homicidal anger, and his backstory of murdering his wife's lover shows that while Lee is generally courteous and caring, he is still flawed, and can have a very short fuse.
Hoist by His Own Petard: The St. Johns chop off Mark's legs and make them into meat for dinner. Mark dies from blood loss and comes back as a walker, grabbing Brenda from behind as she's holding Katjaa hostage.
Danny ends up falling victim to one of his own modified bear traps during the fight in the barn.
On a much larger scale with Crawford. The very system they set up to ensure their survival instead ensured their downfall.
Larry. Killed by the very same knee-jerk emotional reaction that almost had him killing Duck ("We've gotta throw him out or... Smash his head in!")
Hollywood Silencer: You use a pillow to suppress the sound of a gunshot at a certain point.
The end of Episode 1, where the cast state that the Motor Inn is defensible and has power, so they could stay for a good while. Right on cue, the power goes out.
Episode 2 is all about this. The group's food supply run low but they seem to come across some friendly people with a dairy farm, plenty of space to move around and a electric fence to keep the walkers out. Then its revealed the family reverted to cannibalism and was stringing them along so they can capture and kill them later for food.
In "Long Road Ahead", after the motel investigation with Duck (who can think you're "totally awesome") and the ensuing confrontation with the bandits, everyone manages to escape in Kenny's RV, and breathes a sigh of relief. Then, it's revealed that Duck was bit by a walker during the escape, and the ensuing chain of events leads to the deaths of Doug/Carley, Katjaa, Duck and possibly Lilly.
All throughout Episode 3, the decisions you make with Carley or Doug say that they will be remembered by them. Of course, it's all pointless in the end because they die anyway.
Episode 4 is based around this. Kenny is driven to find a boat in Savannah they can use to escape and live a peaceful life on. After a short exploration of the docks shows this to the pointless, Clementine finds an intact boat in the shed behind the house they're hiding out in. The look on Kenny's face when he comes out and sees it almost makes one think he's starting to come back from his Heroic BSOD. Then Lee gets bitten, and Clementine has been kidnapped.
Hostage Situation: Used at the end of Episode 2, but is interrupted, thankfully. In Episode 3, as well.
Hot Scoop: Carley, the reporter, is quite easy on the eyes. If the player chooses, Lee can flirt with her.
I Call It Vera: Danny John calls his rifle Charlotte. Molly calls her ice-climbing axe Hilda.
I Can't Reach It: Two examples in Long Road Ahead. When Lee discovers a walker buckled into the seat of a car, you are only allowed to kill it by releasing its seatbelt and letting it come after you, rather than simply climbing over the car and attacking it from safety. Later, after Kenny has crossed the Despair Event Horizon, you have a literal example when he refuses to move to let you grab a map.
Idiot Ball: Really, the stranger had to have been holding this. It turns out, he owned the car the group stole supplies from in Episode 2, and those supplies were necessary to the survival of his wife and kid. Okay, we get it, he's pissed about that, but he did a pretty shitty job making the fucking thing not look abandoned. Two points in particular:
One: Alright, there was no one at the car, but that proves nothing, right? Except he left it completely alone in the middle of the night, in an area filled with zombies and bandits. Did he really expect anyone to make a different assumption than 'dead' or 'ran for the lives?'
Two: Next, and more importantly, is how he left it. The keys were in the ignition, the door was wide open, the lights were on in the car (basically a gigantic "Hey, look over here!"), and the food was blatantly uncovered. No intelligent person in this universe, even if they were already leaving their 'dwelling' (for lack of a better term) in the pitch-black night, would do so much to make their car both impossible to miss, so easy to break into, and (this can't be stressed enough) so very, very abandoned. Really, anyone would have thought the owners gone or dead (possibly from being Too Dumb to Live).
I Need a Freaking Drink: After Katjaa & Duck's deaths, Lee can tell Kenny that Chuck has some whiskey. He's quick to take advantage, and later shares another bottle with Christa and Omid.
Infant Immortality: Averted, sadly, with Duck in Episode 3, who gets shot by either Kenny or Lee to prevent him from turning.
Interface Spoiler: Downplayed. Some of the story messages are quite relevant, but others turn out to be ultimately meaningless, and a few actions with consequences further down the road don't result in one. It doesn't take long to realize that they are very likely to be vague foreshadowing at best or deliberate misdirections at worst than spoil the plot.
Subverted. It looks like some of the messages, like one that says "Carley will remember that" in Episode 3, are there only to deceive the player and hide way better the "spoilers", in this case it's only to make her death seconds later even more shocking. In Episode 5, almost all of the "[Character] will remember that" messages Double Subvert this when Lee explains his actions/choices.
Since the achievements are all automatically unlocked with the story, you can see how much of the game you've completed by checking the list.
Interface Screw: At least once a zombie will attack right in the middle of a conversation menu, and "This character will remember X action" won't always show up for every significant action, nor is it indicative of how important it is down the line.
Internal Reveal: The player can choose whether or not to reveal Lee's bite wound to the other characters. Ben's collusion with the bandits also comes out in the same episode, with the player having learned it in the previous episode.
It Gets Easier: Averted or played straight with Lee, depending on the player. Played straight by Kenny. Lee will alternatively struggle with violence, or barely bat an eye when he kills the Big Bad(s) of Episode 2, and shows almost no distress if he helps Kenny with the salt lick.
Can be simultaneously invoked and averted in Episode five. If Lee tells Clementine to leave him rather than granting him a Mercy Kill as he succumbs to being bitten, he can tell her this trope and that he doesn't want her to get used to killing a person because she should only do so if it's absolutely necessary.
The Jaywalking Dead: Played with. Walkers do get hit with cars a few times, but unintentionally, and the cars aren't much better off afterwards.
In episode 3, Lilly becomes a paranoid wreck, ranting that somebody is stealing supplies and betraying the group. She first accuses Ben, and then either accuses Carley or keeps accusing Ben depending on whether you saved Carley or Doug in Episode 1. Guess what — she's right! (Except for the Carley thing, of course.) Ben was stealing supplies and giving them to bandits!
In Episode 2, you are confronted by a crazy nutcase in the woods named Jolene. She proceeds to ream you out, call Danny a monster, and insist that she's not with the bandits and you and Danny are accusing her of shooting Mark falsely. Guess what — it's true! Danny and the rest of the St. Johns are in fact cannibalistic monsters, and Jolene isn't the one who shot Mark with an arrow, and she's not with the bandits!
In Episode 3, Chuck scares Clementine half to death by telling her she's going to die if something doesn't change, then gives Lee a list of all the reasons why that is. Turns out he's right — Clementine's long hair was a problem because Andy St. John was able to grab it earlier to threaten her at gunpoint, she did need to learn how to shoot a gun to protect herself and in fact has to do it several times later, and the group didn't have a definite plan for what they were going to do when they got to Savannah.
Kenny is either a Jerkass or a Nice Guy depending on whether you're usually on his side or Lilly's. But he turns out to be right in Episode 3 when he keeps saying they need to leave the motor inn and that their stay there can't last forever; they do in fact get run out later by bandits. And even in Episode 2, he was absolutely right to be suspicious of the St. Johns and eventually want to leave and/or find out what they're up to — they were cannibals planning on killing and eating them! In fact, all the way back in Episode 1, he is absolutely in the right about what should be done with Duck — Duck wasn't bitten, and Larry was being an asshole in suggesting Duck be thrown to the Walkers, he would've been throwing out an innocent boy!
Larry is a jerkass, but it's possible for the player to make him (partially) right about you if you consistently pick "asshole" choices, such as repeatedly insulting him to his face or persuading him to eat human flesh.
Kenny's decision to kill Larry. Even if Lee and Lilly managed to get breathing for a bit, the odds are severely stacked against someone with a heart attack living with no medical aid. CPR is essentially stalling for time until actual medical helps arrives, and being trapped in a small room would make that unavailable. Kenny was probably right in wanting to take no chances that the biggest, strongest person in the room became a walker in close quarters.
Just Ignore It: When Duck gets bit, Kenny's only way of coping is to pretend it's not going to be a problem. He's gone out of his way to prioritize the safety of his family and at this point, shutting down and going into denial is the only mental option he has left to "keep" his son safe. Lee has to knock some sense into him (verbally or physically).
Karma Houdini: Vernon's group steals Lee's boat and escape, and while they did go off to save Clementine, and would not end up needing the boat anyway, Vernon still knew they were trapped in a walker horde with a little girl and a heavily injured man. However, it's implied that the boat had only a small amount of fuel, plus the group consists of elderly cancer survivors with no weapons except for one gun, so their chances of survival are pretty slim even if they make it to land
Also Lilly if Lee decides not to leave her behind.
Subverted expectations in 400 Days. You find what remains of the cancer survivors group, and it's strongly implied that Vernon's decision to steal the boat from Lee's group caused the group to fracture over the decision... with Vernon noticeably missing.
Keet: Duck. Kenny, his father, states that what he lacks in intelligence, he makes up for in enthusiasm.
Kill 'em All: Clementine is the only confirmed survivor. The fates of Omid and Christa are left ambiguous (they might have been the two people Clementine saw off in the distance in The Stinger). Vernon's group made it out, but in 400 Days, it's all but confirmed that he died. It is unknown what happened to Molly and Lilly, but Lilly's odds in particular are not good. Every other named character dies onscreen, including Lee.
The Klutz: Lee spends the first half of Episode 1 slipping, tripping, and falling over everything he touches because of his injured leg. Thankfully he gets over it in the other half onwards, quickly showing he knows how to handle himself (including getting his Weapon of Choice in an axe, and using it to great efficiency).
Late-Arrival Spoiler: Any episode past the first one will be this to someone who randomly decides to get the sequel episodes instead of the original. Episode 2 reveals that anyone who dies, regardless of bites, will become a zombie. That could be considered a spoiler for both the comics and TV show if you haven't read/seen them yet.
Lazy Artist: If Lee saves Carley in Episode 1, the Walker version of David has a gap in his head suggesting that he gets an axe in it when he's dead, which does happen in another run, but he gets shot in the head in a Carley run.
In Episode 2, the teacher caught in the bear trap. He can only be freed by chopping off his leg, and dies of blood loss.
In Episode 5, the player can have the group cut off his bitten arm. He succumbs anyway, although it's unclear whether it was due to the bite having spread far enough, or infection from amputating his arm.
Ludicrous Gibs: Larry's death, which goes from heart attack collapse to skull explosion under weight.
Made of Iron: Lee is this through several of the times he gets injured repeatedly from things that would usually knock out an average man or even kill him. Taken to the max in Episode 5, where he cuts through a zombie horde while suffering from zombie infection or blood loss from cutting his arm off. His optional injuries show this too, as by the end he can be suffering from a gunshot wound to the stomach from The Stranger, and having been bitten three times while going through the horde.
Major Injury Underreaction: Done seriously in Episode 5; when the balcony collapses, Ben falls about 30 feet onto a metal frame and states he thinks he damaged his leg, but he should be ok. The shock from the fall helps hide the fact that he's actually been impaled through the chest. He doesn't register that until he can see it.
Meaningful Background Event: In Episode 1, if Lee and Clementine choose to leave the house in the morning, they meet Chet. As he's running away from Walkers he looks at his arm. If the two leave at night they meet him as a Walker.
In Episode 2, the zombified Mark behind Brenda is illuminated by a lightning flash.
A very subtle one in Episode 3, just before Lilly shoots the Episode 1 survivor, there's the briefest glimpse of her pulling out the gun from her back when the camera pans over to Kenny. Many players won't notice this until a second viewing.
You can do this to the screaming woman whose being chased by zombie in Episode 3.
Lee/Kenny does this to Duck in "Long Road Ahead".
In the season finale, "No Time Left":
Assuming he's still alive at this point, it happens to an impaled Ben; Kenny, not wanting him to be torn to shreds, uses his last bullet on him.
And finally you can convince Clementine to do this to you at the very end of the series.
The Millstone: Ben thinks this about himself... and let's face it, he's right. Let us count the ways.
First, he made a deal with bandits to trade them supplies in exchange for not hurting his friend - when he realized they didn't have his friend, he continued giving them supplies because they'd threatened to kill him.
Second, his not confessing to the paranoid Lilly about his guilt winds up in getting an innocent person killed.
Third, as a result of his pissing off the bandits to such a degree, Duck winds up getting bitten, and Katjaa is Driven to Suicide as a result.
Fourth, when he and Clementine are cornered by zombies in Savannah, he runs away rather than stay and help her, which ends up getting Chuck killed when he comes in to save her instead.
In Episode 4, he removes an axe keeping zombies out from a doorway so he can use it to open another door. Too Dumb to Live barely begins to describe it, but lord knows he tries...
Then, proceeds to tell Kenny about being the one trading supplies as walkers try to take down the door, when it is quite clear this will cause Kenny to be furious and cause a crisis amongst the survivors in a critical moment.
And finally, after having improved a fair amount, he can get screwed by chance, when a small balcony collapses under him as he's about to jump from a window to a nearby roof, forcing Kenny and Lee to go down to help, with Kenny's suicidal tendencies finally coming to fruition as he shoves Lee away, kills Ben with the only remaining bullet, and lets the zombie horde devour him.
Moral Myopia: Kenny radically differentiates between his family and others when it comes to zombification; crushing Larry's head without hesitation in front of his daughter while she's trying to resuscitate him because he had a heart attack is totally necessary, but when Duck is dying from a bite, he's convinced everyone needs to back off because their son is different and won't turn.
Multiple Endings: Subverted. In the end, it doesn't matter who you made friends with or who hates your guts. The closest thing you get to alternate endings is if Clem shoots Lee, or leaves him to turn into a walker.
Lee and Clementine sleep in Hershel's barn, and he is later shown cleaning it up. In the comics and the TV show, this is where he locks up zombie family members. Including Shawn, whom you fail to save.
Two within the first minutes, the prison that Lee is being transported to is "The Prison" that Rick's group goes to. The prisoner that the UPO talks bout that was crying was Thomas Richards, the man who kills the Greene sisters in the comic.
Though in the comic universe, there is a crossover with the TV show as well. At the end of Episode 1, Glenn leaves with Clementine's walkie talkie - the same one he uses to contact Rick when the latter is trapped in the tank.
Never Trust a Trailer: The next episode previews sometimes have events, dialogue, and character designs that don't match up to what actually happens in the next episode.
The debut trailer shows a lot of things that don't happen in the game proper or in an altered fashion, the most notable probably being Ben, Kenny, and Lee in a forest with Christa, who shoots herself in the head with a gun. This situation does come to pass in Episode 3, but with Katjaa rather than Christa, who you don't even meet until later.
No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Depending on how well the player does, Lee can deliver a brutal beatdown to the Big Bad of Episode 2's face. Molly delivers one to a zombie in Episode 4. She has good reason to.
No One Could Survive That: Lee helpfully utters a variation of this ("No one was getting out of there") if Kenny seemingly sacrifices himself to save Ben in Episode 5. Since Kenny was in a narrow alleyway with a horde of walkers approaching from either end, almost no ammo left, no other weapons and about a second to think of an escape plan before the walkers were on him, its understandable he would think as much. Sure enough, though, Kenny survives and reappears in Season 2 without any explanation except for he 'got lucky.'
Not So Different: Kenny and Larry. Both are unreasonable, violent and Papa Wolves. Larry, however, is a Jerk Ass. What Kenny becomes is probably dependent on Lee's choices. Lee and The Stranger are remarkably similar. With how they both hurt their family bringing up an eerie familiarity.
Nothing Is Scarier: First flavor. In the first episode, Lee needs to get handcuffs off of his hand by taking the keys off of the corpse of the officer. You drop the keys in front of his face... And when you pick them up again, no reaction... Until after you release yourself, in which the officer resurrects and tries to devour you.
In Episode Five, you at one point have to cross a rickety bridge erected between two buildings over a waterway full of walkers. Christa warns Lee to be careful, the camera pans above him, the action cursor appears, and you walk across the entire thing without any problems.
In episode five when you finally make it to the Marsh House hotel, after literally fighting through a horde of walkers, you find the hallways to be completely empty, which just makes it more unsettling.
Not Using the Z Word: None of the survivors calls the Zombies Zombies - instead, they're called Walkers or simply The Dead.
This is actually played with in a couple of funny ways. Lee refers to them as zombies a grand total of once in episode 1. In episode 2 when he refers to them as Walkers, Andy acts amused at the terminology. And in episode 4 when you meet another survivor who has been fending for herself long before you show up she refers to them as Geeks with her own justification for doing so.
The interface, though, does call them zombies occasionally.
Season 2, the group you fall in with calls them Lurkers.
Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Between Episodes 1 and 3, the military attempted to re-take Macon but failed. You return to the drugstore to find dead soldiers, jeeps, and a helicopter crashed into the roof of the drugstore.
Many times throughout the first season, a Walker will attack Lee from behind, even when you've thoroughly investigated the area.
Various characters do this either for the sake of convenience or plot importance, such as Andrew St. John talking to you about the farm and The Stranger sneaking up on Lee.
Offstage Villainy: The people of Crawford have deigned to create a Social Darwinist utopia that ruthlessly weeded out those too young, old or sick to pull their weight into survival. Other than a video making it clear that any pregnancies had to be aborted if the mother wished to stay protected, Molly resorting to Sexual Extortion to hide and treat her sister's diabetes, and the impaled zombies (who may have been candidates for Crawford that didn't make the grade), we never see any of their cruelty firsthand.
Old Save Bonus: The game series is built on this, as its choice system rivals Mass Effect and goes beyond with almost every choice mattering, thus saves are highly recommended. Otherwise you get an utter mess of randomized choices as the default.
On the Next: Each episode ends with a trailer for the next chapter.
Except for the end of Episode 4, which just shows the game's title and the title for the final episode.
Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Cissy Jones tried to give Katjaa a German accent, but it comes off as slight at best. Not to mention that she frequently drops it, making it an inconsistent accent.
Our Zombies Are Different: At first the Walkers appear to be your standard zombies. Then you learn that they don't need to bite to spread their condition: all dead with intact brain stems become zombies.
Actually, the "standard" Romero zombies had this feature too. Less attention was drawn to it, however.
Outrun the Fireball: Although you never actually see the explosion, its inferred because Lee kicks a lit blowtorch onto a leaking fuel tanker to try and blow up a horde of walkers. Before jumping onto the roof of a speeding train.
Over-the-Shoulder Carry: Lee does this in Episode 2 to either David (if he was freed from the bear trap) or Travis (if David wasn't freed from the bear trap, since he'll be shot in the stomach instead).
Pædo Hunt: Shawn and Hershel get a little suspicious if Lee admits he doesn't really know Clementine.
Parental Abandonment: Before the outbreak, Clementine's parents left her with a babysitter so they could go on a trip to another city. They didn't make it.
The Power of Friendship: The cornerstone of the gameplay. How you treat others determines who you bond with, and whoever you bond with will in all likelihood save your ass, come hell or high water. It seems to be literally impossible to finish the game without the help of those who trust and value you.
This is most visible with Kenny. If you've consistently got his back, he's got yours. If you don't, he'll hesitate to help Lee during certain violent action sequences and come off as useless because he's not willing to risk himself for you in the heat of the moment.
Press X to Not Die: In exchange for the usual style of action gameplay, moments of danger are treated as this, although the new interface is somewhat more effective than those used in previous Telltale games. Quite humorously; the PC-version employs the "Q" and the "E" buttons for these events.
Played straight with some of Lee's death scenes, with are almost humorously anticlimactic.
Railroading: One of the most common complaints about the game is that sometimes you don't really get a choice even when offered one, and the story will usually proceed as it usually does. The game does sometimes lampshade this trope, particularly when Lee talks to Kenny alone in the Drug Store.
Episode 5 has Ben finally delivering this to Kenny.
Episode 5 also has the mysterious stranger attacking Lee for the things he has done through the story, but if the player has steered clear of the more morally questionable decisions, he comes off as desperate and impotent as he brings up events that were more or less out of Lee's control. But if Lee has been trending towards more more pragmatic and selfish behavior, he can comes off as pretty justified in his attacks, especially if Lee took the supplies from the car.
Red Herring: The game tips will do this to avoid spoilers; the game will almost always note "[Character] will not forget that." following a major choice or opinion, regardless of if the character must die before it matters. A major example in Episode 3 includes Lilly remembering who you side with, despite the plot requiring her to disappear after she murders Carley/Doug.
In Episode 5 after Lee smears himself and Clementine in Walker gore to safely move through the hoards, the sounds of thunder can be heard in the distance, and once outside looking up reveals the sky has gone dark with clouds. Fans of the TV series think they know what will happen next, only to be blindsided by something else entirely.
The Stranger on the radio's text in episode 3 is dark brown, but in episode 4, changes to yellow, and you meet two characters in the episode who both have yellow text, though slightly hued differently. This may make you suspect one of them is contacting Clementine. Neither of them are, and by episode 5, the Stranger's text is back to being dark brown.
Relationship Values: As alluded to in the summary, your actions affect how the rest of the group views and treats Lee.
Remember the New Guy: Used with Mark in Episode 2, as he joined between installments. Genre Savvy gamers figured out he wouldn't live to see Episode 3.
Retcon: Due to the novel changing the entirety of Lilly's background, Telltale covered themselves by removing any references to the game Lilly being the same one from the comics, including changing their official website and renaming a trophy/achievement from that was nod to where Lilly was in the comics.
The first real one is near the end of Episode 1 where you have to choose between Doug and Carley.
There's also a subverted one where you have a choice between Shawn and Duck. No matter whom you pick, Shawn dies and Duck lives. The reactions of other characters however will be influenced by your choice.
Also in Episode 2, Larry suffers a heart attack and collapses in the meat locker. Given the revelation that anyone who dies becomes a zombie, Lilly desperately attempts to resuscitate Larry, while Kenny demands they execute him immediately. Kenny kills Larry irrespective of your choice, but (again) the characters react differently according to your decision.
Very early in Episode 3, Lee and Kenny are scouting for supplies when a woman a good distance away is cornered by walkers and about to be eaten alive. Lee can either give her a swift death and attract the walkers immediately, or leave her as a distraction to buy more time.
Another subverted choice in Episode 3 where you have to choose who to help between Omid and Christa. You may think you're condemning one of them to get eaten by the large group of walkers chasing the train, but no matter who you choose, the other will make it. Of course, the one you save will bitch at you about not saving the other one first.
Subverted again in Episode 4. There are seven people in the group, and the boat can only hold five people. Molly gives up her place, and Lee is bitten and will turn. I think you can see where this is going.
Episode 5 is full of them, and the worst part is they will come with a short timer, so not only do you have to make a hard choice, you have to do it quickly.
Security Blanket: The walkie-talkie becomes this for Clementine, as she and her parents use it to talk and she feels it's the only way she'll be able to reach them. Until the end of Episode 3, when it comes out that the walkie-talkie still works and someone has been extorting Clementine under the pretense that he has her parents.
Senseless Sacrifice: Kenny in episode 5. There was no reason for him to stay behind like he did instead of just shooting Ben before heading back up to the roof. It's pretty heavily implied this was just an attempt to justify his suicide to himself, he's been obsessing on the topic and you can actually call him out on it.
Shoot the Shaggy Dog: After 3-4 episodes of mentoring and protecting Ben, and eventually saving his life, the lead-up to any sort of redemption or even Redemption Equals Death fizzles out entirely when he dies like a chump due to a random vertical piece of iron.
Shut Up, Hannibal!: The player can do this, to a limited extent, to the Stranger, by telling him "You fucked up" when he talks about how your stealing the food from his car destroyed his family. You can also answer "Yes" when he asks if he looks like a monster to you. He responds to both by merely ignoring your defiance and continuing with his rant. You can also do a more successful version of this by having Lee say he'll bite the Stranger and cause him to turn since he's already been bitten himself when the Stranger threathens to kill him: doing so will cause him to stutter momentarily. And speaking to him politely at the beginning of the conversation will temporarily derail him.
The Slow Walk: Near the end of Episode 5, Lee does this when there is a horde of Walkers between himself and the hotel where Clementine is being held. With no other way around them, and running out of time, Lee decides to just push through, determinedly walking through the crowd and hacking the heads of any Walkers that get too close while keeping a steady pace.
The Social Darwinist: The St. Johns in Episode 2, who consider anyone wounded or weak as lower on the food chain, and to be treated as a meat resource and slowly eaten.Also, the inhabitants of Crawford, who don't allow anyone who isn't a completely healthy adult in the city (namely, cancer survivors, anyone under 14, people with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, the pregnant, the elderly, or the disabled to name a few).
Soft Glass: Averted twice. First, when Lee has to kick out a car window, it is realistically hard, and takes several attempts (and even then, he has to kick the entire plane of glass out, not just kick part of the window), and don't forget said car has turned several times on the ground before coming to a stop. It is then averted again when Lee tries to elbow in a truck's window. Not only does this fail, but they actually need porcelain to break it open quickly and safely enough. Averted in episode 4, where a group of walkers cannot break through a glass door. Invoked however in episode 5 when Clementine has to bust the glass window on a door open.
Stab the Scorpion: Kenny does one to Lee when the group is leaving the pharmacy. In Episode 2, you get the option to stab an adjacent hay bale if you spare someone's life.
Star-Crossed Lovers: Episode 1 has Doug and Carley; after hiding their mutual attraction, they both attempt to admit it when walkers attack the Pharmacy, only to be interrupted on both occasions before one of them has to die.
Steel Eardrums: Averted. Lee grabs his ears in pain when a rifle is fired closed to his face, and Clementine complains of her ears ringing after a shooting lesson. Ben also covers his ears in the bell tower when the bell tolls next to him and Lee.
Temporary Love Interest: Carley, if she is alive in Episode 3, has some flirtatious dialogue with Lee. Of course this means she's a goner.
Tempting Fate: Lilly says she thinks everything is going to be okay at the hotel at the end of Episode 1. Then the power goes out, and things only get worse from there.
All of the group besides Kenny, Lee and Lilly think the St. John Dairy exists as some kind of miracle, even ignoring such things as Mark getting shot with an arrow because they broke a deal with bandits. They even ignore the fact that they have an ample supply of meat despite the fact there is one cow on the farm. Bonus points as they mention at every turn they get how great it is.
Both Carley and Larry let Lee know they've figured out his secret, and both come with the choice to be offed at some point (namely, in Episode 1 and 2 respectively, though the latter happens regardless and neither can survive past Episode 3).
Larry states that he's going to survive longer than Lee, and that he's going to be the one to kill Lee if he turns. As was said previously, no matter what you do, he dies anyway right after saying this.
Kenny does this to himself on a few occasions, such as avoiding the "What if it was your family?" arguments by insisting that Duck and Katjaa would never come to harm or be in that position. Cue episode 3 where and Duck is infected and Katjaa kills herself.
The man who kidnaps Clementine does this as he talks to his wife's reanimated head in a bowling bag, saying that Clementine "wouldn't hurt a fly". Cue meat cleaver, table lamp or if you don't prompt her, her fist.
Thou Shalt Not Kill: Judging by all of the decisions by players according to the stats, players refused to kill, whether it meant electing to spare villains like the St. Johns, trying to save jerkasses like Larry, or stopping The Load like Ben from committing a Heroic Sacrifice.note In every case, presence of Morality Pet Clementine has been stated to be one of the most common reasons why people do so; more than half of people kill Danny, it's Andy (where Clementine is clearly present) where 80% seem to decide not to. Clementine was present when Larry had a heart attack, while Clementine was the lone member of the group to speak on Ben's behalf.
Twenty Minutes into the Past: You may not realize this at first, but this takes place at the start of the comic, which was October 2003, meaning at the beginning of Episode 2, it is January 2004. The gas prices (around $2.00) may clue some players in. A subtle clue is at the beginning of the first episode as Lee is being driven to prison. The police chatters starts to get a tad more erratic as the conversation goes on and you can see police cars on the oncoming road heading into Atlanta. A sign the outbreak is starting.
Even if Lee does a Pet the Dog with Larry, and even after he saves his life getting nitroglycerine for his heart condition, he still forces Lee back towards the zombies when the group is trying to escape.
Kenny too, you could have defended his kid from zombies and Larry, give them food, support his leadership, and he still whines about you didn't help him kill Larry, who was (maybe) still breathing right before he got turned into Ludicrous Gibs
Similarly, if you chose a fairly neutral response to Duck's suspected zombie bite, such as trying to reason with Larry, Kenny will continue to rag on you for not caring for his son throughout the second episode until you redeem yourself in his eyes.
Lilly in Episode 3 if you choose to bring her along after she kills Carley/Doug and especially if you try to have Lee and Clementine leave with her. She repays the favor by stealing the RV, stranding the group by the train.
Pretty much the whole point of the game is to invest the players in its characters, then use that to break their hearts into little weeping bits.
Video Game Cruelty Potential: A villain can do this to Clementine, as he/she can be extremely cruel to her. Taken Up to Eleven as the player can let Clementine and the group eat human meat by not racing downstairs or failing to shout out what it is.
Bonus monster points if the player doesn't shout out that it's human meat; when Larry berates Lee for being rude, there's the option of saying "Fuck you. Eat up, Larry.", prompting Larry to state he'd love to before eating a slice of human meat.
However, it should be noted that any cruelty the player shows Clementine will usually be mitigated somehow, since for plot reasons especially for Episode 5's tear jerker of an ending Clementine cannot have too negative an opinion of Lee. For example, if the player doesn't save Clementine from the "bathroom Walker" in episode 1 and if Carley has to shoot it instead, Lee will explain that he was too far away to do anything, which Clementine will accept with a simple suggestion to stick closer next time. For another example, if while handing out four rations for ten people during Episode 2 the player doesn't choose Clementine as one of the people to feed, Clementine will complain later that she's "very hungry", but that problem is solved or so everyone thinks when the dairy farmers show up so this won't have too negative of an impact.
Visual Novel: The Walking Dead is an American example of the Visual Novel genre.
Wham Episode: It all starts falling apart in Episode 3. The episode really is about lost innocence: things are going to get really bad before they get better, if it does get better at all. Episode 4 does its best to top this. And with Lee getting bitten, and Clementine getting kidnapped being at the top of the list of things that happen, they succeeded.
Ben telling the group that just dying will cause you to become a Walker. Being bitten isn't necessary. One of Lee's responses is an appropriate, "God help us."
Ben: It's not the bite that does it! You come back no matter how you die. If you don't destroy the brain that's just what happens!
The end of Chapter 3 has a doozy, especially since it comes from Clementine's supposedly busted walkie-talkie.
Voice: Can't wait for you to get to Savannah, Clementine. I've got your parents right here! And you be sure to find me, whether Lee wants you to or not.
Voice(after revealing he has Clem when Lee responds to her walkie): If I were you, I'd pick your next words VERY carefully.
If you say you don't know who The Stranger is, he jogs your memory by reminding you about the car and supplies you stole in Episode 2...
The first chapter has one in the first scene in the police car. The line varies, but the overall scene is the same- the police officer is in the middle of saying something when the dialogue choices suddenly pop up (which include "IN THE ROAD!", "WATCH OUT!", and "OH SHIT!"), moments before the car hits a Walker. It's a nice way of showing that sometimes, choices will pop up out of nowhere, and you're not always going to have a lot of time to make a decision.
In Episode 1, right when you're about to escape the zombie-infested drugstore, Larry yells "You're not coming with us, you son of a bitch!" at you and punches you to the ground, with Kenny barely saving you from the zombies afterwards. This is after you risk your life to get Larry the pills for his heart.
What Happened to the Mouse?: Maybelle, the St. John farm's cow, isn't ever brought up again after you find out the St. John family are a Cannibal Clan. Andre the policeman disappears after dropping Lee and Clem off at the Greene farm at night. In Episode 5 Molly does not return after leaving the group, but considering that the Savannah is completely overrun, her odds are not good.
What Have You Done for Me Lately?: Kenny's almost verbatim line when he's complaining about Molly, and Lee points out that she did save his life. Given his reactions if Lee ever disagrees with him, Kenny seems to have this mindset quite often.
What the Hell, Hero?: Lee gets this a lot, regardless of his choices. The man who kidnaps Clementine really lets him have it when he arrives at the hotel. It can be pretty hilarious if the player have made an active effort to steer Lee away from heinous acts, as he starts bringing up events there were either more or less out of Lee's control, or very easy to reasonably justify. On the other hand, if the player has been doing stuff like stealing food from the episode 2 station wagon, or stabbing Danny St. John to death with a pitchfork when Danny was already incapacitated and at Lee's mercy, the man chewing Lee out can actually have a point.
Anachronic Order: The DLC can be played this way due to the playable characters' individual stories all taking place at different moments within a 400 day time span and the player can choose who to play in what order.
The prison bus from Vince's story can be seen in Wyatt and Bonnie's stories.
Shel and Becca can be seen fleeing from walkers during Vince's story.
Nate was the one chasing Wyatt in his story. If the player chooses to play Wyatt's story first, the headlight of the pursuer' car will get shot. The pursuer also has a scar on his hand gotten in Wyatt's story, most noticeable if Wyatt stays in the car.
The prison guard who ditched the prisoners in Vince's story is also the one who got hit by the car in Wyatt's story and is a "watch dog" walker in Shel's story if certain conditions are met.
The walker with a screwdriver in its eye that shows up in Russell's story shows up in Bonnie's story. It tries to grab Bonnie, but Bonnie kicks the screwdriver into its head. It will however show up in only one and not the other if certain conditions are met.
The old woman from Russell's story shows up in Shel's story as a "watch dog" walker who ends up eating a puppy. So does her husband but only if certain conditions are met.
The group remarks in Shel's story that they are missing a flashlight ever since they went to the corn fields. The same ones that Bonnie goes through when trying to escape her pursuers and presumably the same flashlight that Dee was using.
This also shows that Shel's group were the people who were hunting Bonnie in her story. Their voices and silhouettes become recognizable after you meet them in Shel's story
This is confirmed again when you get the first morality branch of Shel's story, where they reference the last break-in with food and medicine stolen. If you play Bonnie's story first, Leland's survival and taking the bag decides in Roman's telling of the conversation if the group lost all the goods or if they got them back.
The Macon General Store briefly appears during the intro to Vince's Story.
Carley or Doug's dead body appears during Russell's story.
Joyce, Clive, and Boyd from the cancer group show up in Shel's story, apparently having broken off from Vernon after taking the boat from Lee's group. Joyce can even be seen wearing a "NAPLES" sweatshirt likely stolen from the Naples resident Kenny in S1E5.
The group will also mention what measures they had to take to steal the boat, such as who they had to overpower if someone opted not to join Lee.
And if you look very closely, the pre-apocalypse cutscene before your first visit to the character selection area has Kenny and Duck getting gas.
Easily Forgiven: In Russell's chapter, it is possible to convince Nate to give Russell the gun, which you are then given the option of pointing at Nate and trying to kill him. Russell can't do it, Nate takes the gun back, and doesn't mention it again. Actually, because you are given the option of saying different things during this part, Nate will actually be understanding if you say the right things.
Nate GREAT. Good. That's what I like to hear. And no apology needed for pointing the gun at me; I can see that you're under some stress.
Guide Dang It: Good damn luck getting everyone to come with you in 400 days at the end. Lets look at the worst examples. Wyatt: Stay in the car instead of going out to help the cop. Considering that you most likely agreed to play rock, paper, scissors over it, which is a complete Luck-Based Mission, good luck. Alternatively, you can choose a specific line of dialogue with Tavia and Wyatt will come along. Russell: You have to choose a very specific dialogue during the ending, also the same one that can be used to convince Wyatt, and considering that that line is hidden in a choice of four, its pretty likely that Russell will stay behind (the line is "There might be people you know"). Vince: you have to save Justin, a Jerk Ass white collar criminal, instead of Danny, a man who may or may not be a rapist. Justin will have heard about Tavia's settlement and apparently died trying to get there. Shel/Becca: actually ties in with Russell. If you chose to have Shel drive off in the RV, she'll automatically come along due to thinking her former group is hunting her. If you killed Stephanie instead, you'll need to say "There may be people your own age", but this will make Russell stay behind. And if you use the correct dialogue with Russell in this scenario, Shel/Becca will stay behind. So make sure you jack that RV, completionists.
Interquel: Meant to bridge the gap between Seasons One and Two. The choices from this game will carry on into the second season.
Luck-Based Mission: The rock-paper-scissors game with Eddie in Wyatt's story. There's no trick to winning or losing, it's completely random, which explains why, at the time of writing, the results for whether or not people stayed in the car are at 50/50.
Not Quite The Right Thing: In Vince's Story: Despite his humanistic nature, running off with Danny instead of Justin will mean Vince doesn't join the group, claiming that they need to stick together. Russell also remarks that he was a real asshole, likely due to a similarity or two to Nate. Going with Justin instead gives Vince a bit of reason, and prior knowledge of community shelters, sparking him to come along with Tavia. Having Shel place her sister's safety over conscience at the end of her scenario makes Tavia's job harder.
As of Season 2, it is revealed that getting everyone to go with Tavia itself is this, as it turns out that the community she was referring to happens to be Carver's group. Maybe The Power Of Trust in a Zombie Apocalypse isn't all it's cracked up to be.
Peek-A-Boo Corpse: If Russell chooses to hide from the approaching truck he'll come face to face with the rotting corpse of Doug or Carley from chapters 1-3 of season 1.
Police Are Useless: The guard on the bus was reluctant to act against an murder attempt on the bus. Then he kills that prisoner in cold blood before threatening the other prisoners. To be fair, he was caught in a panic, but he didn't last long either. The other guard on the bus immediately ditches the bus and others once the walkers start showing up, leaving three prisoners chained and mostly defenseless.
The Power Of Trust: Like the previous game, it's a theme among each chapter. It ultimately plays a part in the ending.
Vince's Story: Vince must decide whether to shoot off either Danny or Justin's foot in order to escape the prison bus.
Wyatt's Story: Provided that Wyatt leaves the car, do you try to help the badly hurt police officer, or save yourself? However, it doesn't matter, for Wyatt gets abandoned either way.
Shel's Story: First, Shel must decide whether or not to allow Roman to execute a thief as he might give up their location to others. Later she must choose whether to execute Stephanie for trying to escape with supplies or flee with Becca.
Seinfeldian Conversation: Bonnie's story starts with her and Leland having a bizarre conversation about what sort of weird body parts they could or couldn't live with having, such as a snake for a tongue or lobster claws.
Take a Third Option: Inverted; in Shel's story, you can only leave or kill Stephanie. Killing Roman instead isn't an option.
Episode 1: Omid, within the first five minutes no less. His murderer, Michelle, is savagely shot by Christa less than a minute later. Christa isn't seen after the Cold Open. Sam (the dog Clementine finds) also dies. Pete can die at the end of the episode to a walker bite, depending on your choices.
Episode 2: Pete dies if he survived the last episode. Matthew is shot dead on a bridge by Nick. Nick can die to a walker bite if you don't convince Walter to forgive him. Walter is shot point-blank by William Carver, and Alvin possibly is too, if Clementine doesn't step in to protect him.
Episode 3: The new character Reggie is thrown off a rooftop by Carver. Alvin dies in a Heroic Sacrifice after being savagely beaten by Carver. Carver himself is later killed brutally by Kenny in the most karmic way possible. Jane shoots Troy and leaves him to die in the episode's climax. Carlos is hit by a stray bullet and then devoured by Walkers. And finally, Sarita is bitten by a Walker, although she may survive if Clementine opts to cut her hand off.
Episode 4: Being the penultimate chapter, doesn't look too good for the protagonists. Sarita dies at the beginning of the episode, no matter the choice you made at the end of Episode 3 (she's either devoured by Walkers instantly after you amputate her or later put down after she turns). Nick is shown to have died attempting to get help for Luke and Sara via a bullet wound sustained in the previous episode (and zombified in the process). Sarah dies being Eaten Alive (either by being left behind at the trailer park or in the collapse of the deck, regardless of whether or not you get Jane to help her). And lastly Rebecca dies of exhaustion from her childbirth towards the end of the episode, forcing Clem or Kenny to shoot her to stop her Walker form from eating her baby. The episode's cliffhanger involves a shootout with an unconfirmed number of fatalities, but judging by how many shots were fired, it was likely a lot.
Apologetic Attacker: Michelle, who comes in at the beginning and holds Clementine at gunpoint. Omid comes in to try to save Clementine, but the door he left open closes with a loud sound, startling her so that she instinctively turns around and shoots Omid. She actually feels remorse over this — or is panicking because an obviously pregnant woman holding a rifle has just walked in — and then repeatedly starts shouting that she didn't mean to shoot him! She even drops her gun to plead with Christa, who shoots her anyway.
Episode 3 has Carlos forced at gunpoint to slap his daughter, apologizing before and after for what Carver made him do.
Art Evolution: Season 2's art style is still in-line with Season 1, though employs slightly more vibrant colors as well as making the cel-lines more noticeable, character animations are far more fluid and less prone to being recycled. The Walkers also have more variety, along with being more detailed.
Badass Adorable: Thanks to hanging out with Lee, and eventually Christa and Omid, Clementine has picked up on some survival techniques, skills, and become even more resourceful, and still looks like a regular little girl doing this. Understandably, this impresses some of the adults she comes across.
Badass Boast: "I'm still. NOT. Bitten!" This is one of the responses that can be said by Clementine when, after being locked in a shed, she has to kill a Walker with a claw hammer. Not to mention this happen after she sneaks in and out of an house unnoticed and stitches herself up.
Bait and Switch: At the end of episode 3, Sarita is bitten and you're given the choice of killing the walker or cutting off her arm. Reggie survived a walker bite after immediate amputation, so you're led to believe cutting off her arm is the best option. But in the next episode, if you cut off her arm her screaming will attract walkers and they will gang up on her, forcing you to put her down immediately. Killing the walker is actually the best option, as it at least gives Kenny time to say goodbye.
Bitch Alert: Rebecca is very much in favor of killing Clementine in case she was bitten by a walker. Understandably, Clementine isn't too fond of her after this. Which leads to her...
Backstabbing the Alpha Bitch: Turns out Clementine overheard Rebecca worrying about who the father of her child is (since its possibly not her husband) and later isn't shy about letting the abrasive Rebecca know it. Even the dialogue choices in that conversation are bitchy.
Bolivian Army Cliffhanger: Episode Four ends with an all-out shootout between Clementine's party and the Russians, with only the sound of gunshots and a cut to black.
Brand X: The "Howe's" in Episode Three is clearly modeled on Lowe's Home Improvement.
But Thou Must: Genre savvy players may attempt to pick up Clementine's gun when searching for her lost water bottle or find a food dish for the dog, but the game doesn't allow one to make those choices and the consequences are dire, although there was no way for your character to know in advance that a random bandit would wander into the bathroom in the few seconds she spent picking up the water bottle.
Call Back: Clementine falling in and out of consciousness while the cabin survivors argue what to do with her is evocative of Lee suffering the same after his initial crash in the police car. And in another parallel to Episode 1, Clementine brains a walker with a claw hammer, just like Lee did. This time we get to see it in all it's bloody glory. In the hunting cabin, Clem will comment that a picture of a mallard reminds her of Duck from season 1. And if you, as Lee, tried cutting your arm off in season 1, this gets a couple callbacks. First when Clem finds the tied up Walker who'd attempted to cut the infected part of his arm off, second when Clem mentions having once knowing somebody who'd lost an arm, and third when she notes later that she's glad she still has both arms. And when finding the aforementioned tied-up walker, Clem will reassure Sam the dog that its safe, repeating whatever advice Lee gave her last season.
Clementine: Its okay, we're smarter than it. We're smarter than all of them.
In episode 3, the entire escape plan is lifted from the first group's time in Savannah, from Molly using noise to attract a walker herd to Lee's using walker guts on Clementine to blend among zombies. Both are explicitly referenced.
Canine Companion: Sam serves as this for Clementine in Episode One. Ultimately subverted after a short while once he attacks her over some food.
Chekhov's Gun: Double Subverted: Mike and Bonnie say that the cannons you find at Parker's Run Memorial Museum could do a lot of damage and make a lot of noise if you got them working. Jane later explains at the observation deck that you can't get them working, as they've been filled with cement for safety. But when you have to keep the walkers of the deck, it can still be used to block the gate - except the weight of the cannon breaks the deck when you try to move. Well, now there's no stairs for the walker to climb up!
Chekhov's Gunman: The guy at the bridge. It's Matthew. As in, the Matthew that's Walter's significant other.
Chekhov's Skill: In Episode 3, Reggie is living proof that someone can survive a walker bite to a limb if it's cut off fast enough. At the end, you're given the choice of doing the same for Sarita.
A special note for this particular example is that attempting to put it into motion will cause Sarita to die IMMEDIATELY upon Episode 4's start, tricking the player into taking the worse conclusion (though leaving her to deal with the bite is still really bad to say the least).
Cliff Hanger: Episode Four ends on a nasty one. Clem's group is confronted by Arvo, the Russian kid who Clementine and Jane encountered (and possibly robbed, depending on the player's choices) at Parker's Run. A group of his friends emerges from the woods with guns and demands all of the group's goods and supplies, triggering a Mexican Standoff. Things go From Bad to Worse when an ill and exhausted Rebecca suddenly expires and reanimates, forcing either Kenny or Clem to put her down... cue Blast Out. Smash to Black, roll credits.
Coming of Age Story: Seems like one for Clementine. In the first season she was just a timid youth with someone to look out for her. This season sees her grow more into independent able to take care of herself despite others still viewing her as a child. However the story likewise seems to hint this could potentially go the wrong way with Clem risking becoming cold-hearted in order to survive the horror of her world.
Continuity Nod: The reveal trailer shows almost all of the (now overrun with Walkers) previous locations from Season One and 400 Days, and the group of bodies Clementine, Pete and Nick find at the end are Roman's group, who were presumably hunting Shel and Becca.
There are a number in Episode 2 including in the beginning depending on If you're with Pete or Nick with Nick she'll mention Ben and with Pete she'll reference Lee. and when Carver shows up at the cabin Clementine can say that her name is Carley. If you tell him it's just you and your dad living in The Cabin Clementine will say her Dad's name is "Ed", which is the name of her actual father, and when talking with Alvin about Nick losing it Clem can mention Lily. Also, when you reunite with Kenny, he'll either reference Lee as one hell of a guy, if Kenny and Lee were friends, or as Kenny and Lee having their differences, if Kenny and Lee didn't get along. If Clementine asks, he'll also reference either having put Ben out of his misery, if Ben was with you in season 1 episode 5, or he'll reference jumping down to save Christa and "give her a hand", if Ben wasn't with you in season 1 episode 5.
In Episode 4, while talking to Jane, Clementine can mention her baby sitter, Sandra.
In Episode 1, this ends up being implied as the ultimate fate of Omid and Christa's baby. After Omid's death and the Time Skip, Christa is no longer pregnant and the baby is nowhere to be seen.
In Episode 4, this is thankfully Subverted. When Rebecca gives birth, we see Kenny hold up the unmoving baby in silence as everyone looks on in horror... And then the baby coughs and wakes up as everyone breathes a sigh of relief.
Darker and Edgier: To season 1, big time. Omid gets shot and killed by a teenaged looter, Christa shoots the looter in retaliation even though she'd dropped her gun and was completely defenseless, absolutely no mention is made of what happens to Christa and Omid's baby, and Clementine makes friends with a dog only for it to turn feral and give her a nasty bite on the arm before she fatally impales it by accident... Of course, that's all just from the first half of the FIRST EPISODE of season 2. The second half will likely leave your jaw hanging off the side of your face.
Despair Event Horizon: Omid's death causes this for Christa and Clementine. Even almost a year and a half after it happens they are pretty broken up over it, and Clementine takes a more bleak, realistic look at the world after it.
Diabolus ex Machina: The end of "In Harm's Way", Clem and her group kill Carver and manage to escape his settlement by using Walker guts to sneak through a herd, when a stray bullet kills Carlos, Sarah panics and runs, and Sarita gets bit in the arm.
The Dog Bites Back: At the end of Episode 4, Arvo comes back, looking for revenge, bringing his friends with him.
Dramatic Irony: In Episode 2, as the ski cabin survivors are saying how they're hoping Matthew comes back soon, Clementine suspects Matthew is the man Nick shot on the bridge. Later, her suspicions are proven right.
Dropped a Bridge on Him: Nick in Episode 4. After he catches a stray bullet while leaving Carver's settlement, he doesn't show up again for a while. Then Clementine finds him caught in a fence, already turned into a walker, and she puts him down. Besides Luke, Clem, and (briefly) Rebecca, no one seemed to care much about his death.
Dwindling Party: Naturally. However, Episode 4 goes into full throttle with this trope. Sarita dies right at the beginning (or if you didn't cut off her hand, she dies later on). Nick is Killed Off Screenvery abruptly and is forced to be killed after he becomes a walker. Sarah dies if you leave her inside the trailer or she dies when the observation deck collapses. Jane leaves the group shortly after Sarah dies. And Rebecca dies from exhaustion seconds before the episode is over. To make matters worse, the episode ends on one hell of a Bolivian Army Ending involving Russian bandits shooting at Clem's group, so more than likely, at least one or two characters will be confirmed dead or fatally wounded at the start of Episode 5.
Empathy Doll Shot: Clementine finds a stuffed rabbit while searching the bathroom stalls at the very beginning of episode 1. It's actually one of the LEAST sad things about that chapter. She can also find a doll at the abandoned campsite in the woods.
Establishing Shot: Comments from Christa and a discarded license plate establish that they have made it as far as North Carolina. In Episode 2, a quick shot of a map shows the group has reached Virginia.
Everyone Has Standards: If the player chooses to kill the dog at the camp site, and to tell Luke and Pete about it, Luke is disturbed because "you don't kill dogs."
Evolving Credits: The title screen's colors significantly darken as each episode is released.
Fission Mailed: If you don't hide in time in the bathroom, Rebecca doesn't discover you. Before she can enter the bathroom, you luck out, because Sarah asks Rebecca what she's doing, and when Rebecca replies she's looking for a towel to wash up, Sarah says there are towels in the kitchen, so Rebecca leaves.
Also, if you save Nick over Pete in episode 1, then in episode 2, it looks like Nick sacrifices himself to save you just as Pete does if you save Pete instead...but, unlike Pete, your group comes back to find Nick alive.
Foreshadowing: When Clementine is seperated from Christa and finds herself in another part of a forest, she can read a sign that warns of dangerous animals that wanders around the forest. This is a big hint to Sam the dog's true nature when meeting with him shortly after reading the sign.
During the trailer when Chuck says "or smart" it shows Omid, after showing clips of others who didn't make it. This may have been Tell Tale hinting towards his fate at the very beginning of Season Two.
Episode 3 has Reggie and his missing arm, proving that cutting an infected bite fast enough can save a person - this comes back at the very end with Sarita's bite.
Forgotten Fallen Friend: When Nick dies, Luke gets exactly one line of dialogue to regret his loss. He then seems to completely forget he ever existed, apparently more upset when Jane leaves after a one night stand than he is by the death of his best friend of 20 something years.
Which becomes Harsher in Hindsight by the end of the episode, as Kenny had his face smashed in by Carver enough to lose an eye, and Kenny later repays the favor on Carter.
Gameplay and Story Integration: If you ask Sarah about the book she was reading when you stumble into her room Clementine can later be seen with said book while eating. Looks like Sarah loaned it to her.
In Episode One, if you give water to the dying bandit by the river you won't have any left for Pete if you decide to save him.
Gory Discretion Shot: Averted big time in the second season. You never directly see Clem die during game over scenes in the first season when Lee fails to save her. In the second season however her promotion to playable comes with death/game over scenes that are just as bad as some of Lee's if not worse due to her age. To say it's very unsettling to see Clem get her neck torn out or her stomach ripped open by a walker is a massive understatement.
Groin Attack: At the end of episode 3 Jane shoots Troy there so he would draw the walkers. He deserves it.
Hope Spot: In Episode 2, the group is force to flee the cabin after a dangerous former ally finds them. They reach a bridge and Clem and Luke go scout up ahead. They find another survivor, Matthew, and he seems nice enough. Even willing to share his food. Then Nick stupidly comes running up without assessing the situation and shoots him thinking he was about to attack the pair. This leads to consequences later when they find the rest of Matthew's group. Maybe even moreso as Matthew was that group's lookout and without him. Carver manages to catch up to the cabin group easily.
Hypocritical Humor: Clem complains how she hates scavengers because they always take everything — while she's scrounging around an abandoned campsite for food.
Ice Princess: Due to the events of the games, and partially depending on your choices, Clementine shows signs of turning into this in Episode Two. Even the gentlest version of Clem is notable for being considerably more emotionally dead compared to her personality in Season 1. The least gentle version is a cold, abrasive and manipulative Jerkass. This is understandable, given that everyone she's ever cared about is dead or missing, people who are capable of helping her initially refuse to, and she was engaged in Passive-Aggressive Kombat with one of her new group.
Carried a step farther in Episode Three, where Carver explicitly acknowledges her as the shrewdest, strongest, and most experienced member of the group, willing to do whatever it takes to survive. He even compares her to himself, which, considering his status as a stone-cold killer whose very name inspires fear in the rest of the party, is seriously saying something. At the end of the episode, Clementine can choose to stay and watch Kenny beat Carver's skull in with a crowbar, and her own face barely strays from cold indifference throughout the entire ordeal.
Irony: The sign in the campground warning Clem of dangerous animals. There IS a dangerous animal around, but not one you'd expect. A starved Dog bites her after she tries to take some food back from it after it tried to keep it all for itself.
Also, if you opt to help Sarah pick berries she'll worry about making a mistake. Clementine responds that it won't be the end of the world if she does. Cue Carver showing up and pushing Reggie off the roof for not making sure they picked enough berries.
A more depressing irony is present in Amid The Ruins where a memorial in a civil war site quoting "Fallen, but not Forsaken". Sarah, if she was saved in the trailer house, literally falls to her death and is immediately forsaken by her friends afterwards.
Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Sam gets kicked into a group of sharp metal tent-poles and stabbed though his leg and chest, and unlike other examples where the victim either dies moments after or immediately, Sam remains fully conscious and whining in pain while trying to pull himself off of the poles.
Infant Immortality: A major aversion, as always. Here, Clementine can die in a number of brutal ways.
In Episode 4, Clem can leave Sarah at the petrol station if she doesn't think she will be able to convince her to leave, and even if she does save her, Sarah will die in a later scene.
Insult Backfire: In Episode 3, Clementine can tell Carver that she wishes Kenny had shot him. He appreciates the gall it took to say that to his face, and segues it into a Not So Different moment.
It's Up to You: The number of times an 11 year old girl is asked to take point on even extremely dangerous tasks becomes almost comical. Especially egregious is when all of the adults defer to Clem's expertise in figuring out how to turn off a wind turbine. Though this is usually because the other members of the group are otherwise preoccupied taking care of their family or recent events have made their abilities... questionable. There are also other times where Clementine's specially suited to a task (such as being smaller and sneakier) so there are at least in-story reasons for this besides the fact that you're the protagonist.
Clem finally gets the opportunity to lampshade it during "In Harm's Way" as she's volunteered to set off the PA system to attract walkers.
Clementine: Ugh, why is it always me?
Jerkass Has a Point: Nick really comes across as this, since the last time they'd let a bitten survivor into their group, his mother wound up being killed when they turned. He does later apologize for his behavior, giving the player the choice to forgive him or not.
Villain Has a Point: Considering The Cabin Group locked us in a shed and we don't really know much about their background... Let's just say this quote struck a chord for some players.
Carver: If people don't trust you, how can you trust them?
Kick the Dog: Carver shoots Walter in the back of the head after torturing Carlos in front of his sobbing daughter.
Kick the Son of a Bitch: The fact that over 70% of players chose to stay and watch as Kenny caved in Carver's face with a crowbar at the end of Episode 3 is pretty telling.
Language Barrier: In Episode Four, Clementine and her crew encounter a group of Russians who want revenge for Jane (and possibly Clem) robbing and threatening one of their members, Arvo. They demand that Clem's group surrender all their supplies, but Clem's group refuses, resulting in a Mexican Standoff. By this point, everyone wants to back out, but only Arvo can understand both languages. Unfortunately, when an undead Rebecca is killed, the gunshot causes a firefight.
The promotional artwork for Episode 4 clearly depicts Kenny, spoiling his return in Episode 2. Players who were waiting for the entire season to be complete before playing, and were just casually browsing the Steam Store front page around Episode 4's release, might not appreciate this.
Let's You and Him Fight: The escape plan in Episode 3, deliberately attracting a massive herd to overrun Carver's settlement.
Also done at the end of Episode 3, where you have to choose to cut Sarita's arm off or not.
Lone Survivor: A picture Clementine can find at the abandoned campsite features a family, all of whom are implied to be dead, with Sam the dog in the background, revealing he's the only family member left.
Let's Split Up, Gang: Forced by circumstances. Clementine and Christa split up when they're attacked by thugs early on in "All That Remains", and at the end, if you opt to run to Pete's aid, he and Clem are separated from Nick as they escape from walkers.
Man Hug: In Episode 2, Luke gives one to Nick when comforting him over Pete's death.
Mercy Kill: Clementine can do this to the dog that attacked her...
In "All That Remains", you have the choice of feeding the dog Sam. If you don't feed him, He will attack for denying him food. If you do feed him, he will try to take all of it, and attack you for trying to stop him.
In "In Harm's Way," Reggie is on thin ice with Carver, who is furious that he helped the group escape the first time. He is tasked with making the Clem and Sarah work cutting berries and trimming plants. Sarah immediately has a breakdown and cannot complete her task, giving the Clementine the choice of helping her finish or doing their own work. Regardless of what option you choose, one of the girls will have not completed their share when Carver returns and he murders Reggie in retaliation.
At the end of "In Harm's Way," Sarita is bitten and you're given the choice of killing the walker or cutting off Sarita's arm. In the next episode, Sarita is killed by walkers immediately no matter what you did.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Players who strove for the Golden Ending in 400 Days. Anyone they convinced to come along with Tavia becomes security at Carver's stronghold, and are likely killed by the herd in the climax of Episode 3.
Not Quite The Right Thing: Reggie confirms that a prompt amputation will stop infection. Good to know, right? Well, at the end of "In Harm's Way," Sarita is bitten on the hand by a walker during the group's escape, and the game prompts you to either get it off her or take her arm off. If you choose the latter, she is swarmed by walkers and dies immediately.
Not So Different: Carver claims that this is the case with him and Clementine. He notes that when they first met in Episode 2, he realized how brave she was for looking him straight in the eyes, without any signs of fear, and that there's no way she could've survived in this world without being like him.
Offhand Backhand: Christa doesn't noticeably seem to aim her rifle or even look at her target when she guns down Omid's killer.
Old Save Bonus: Whatever decisions that were made in the first season can be carried over to the second via a save file of your choice from the last season. If there are any uncompleted episodes (including 400 Days), or no save file, the decisions that were to be made in those episodes are randomized.
Promoted to Playable: You're controlling Clementine this time out who, unlike Lee, is limited in fending off Walkers and Scavengers, meaning it's up to you how you have her deal with certain situations.
Properly Paranoid: While it seems harsh to players, how many wouldn't be suspicious of someone with an unidentifiable bite on their arm told you that it was only a dog during the middle of a Zombie Apocalypse?
Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: One of the dialog options after the cabin survivors find that Clem has killed a walker that broke into the shed they put her in to make sure she isn't bitten (and the achievement you get for reaching that scene) is aptly labeled as "Still. Not. Bitten."
Puppy-Dog Eyes: When Carlos' group is deciding whether or not to help Clementine, she can appeal to several of them by picking a "sad eyes" option. Doing it to Luke(who is on Clementine's side) gets him to complain about her trying to "guilt trip" him.
Our lovable child protagonist is wandering the forest and encounters an abandoned dog. Will she gain a canine companion for her adventures? Nope. The dog is starving and has probably been without human contact for a long time - so it tries to maul her for her food.Fable this ain't.
In Episode 2, Pete (if he's still alive) attempts to saw off his foot, but then decides against it because he knows he'll bleed out anyway. Even if he didn't, he knows there's no way for Clementine to carry him all the way back to the cabin.
If you choose to chop off Sarita's hand at the end of Episode 3, she'll die anyway at the start of Episode 4 either from blood loss or shock.
After being out in the cold for so long, and not being treated shortly after she gave birth, Rebecca dies from exhaustion.
Replacement Goldfish: Kenny seems to treat Clementine and Sarita as his new family. Becomes pretty obvious when he accidentally calls Clementine "Duck".
At the end of Season 2 Episode 1, Nick is surrounded by Walkers, while Pete is only facing one but has a leg injury. You have to choose whether to save Nick or Pete; you only have time to save one because earlier, Clementine was attempting to grill a bandit she recognized about Christa's whereabouts. Similar to Telltale's The Wolf Among Us, the choice actually has a good and bad option, as running to Nick (As he is surrounded by more and could use more help) results in Pete being overwhelmed when more walkers appear, but going to Pete (who is injured and has no ammo left) results in Nick running off into the woods unscathed. However, it ends up being subverted, because in Episode 2, either Pete dies anyway sacrificing himself to save you, or Nick seems to sacrifice himself but you later find him alive. No matter who you save, in the end, Pete dies, and Nick lives.
Double Subversion in Episode 4 regarding Sarah. You have the option to leave Sarah in the trailer to die, or to rescue her. If you choose to rescue her, later on, there's another choice where you have to rescue Jane or drop Jane and tell her to help Sarah, who's pinned beneath a collapsed deck. If you try to save Sarah this time around, she'll die anyway, just like Pete.
Schmuck Bait: The gold watch Clem can find in a drawer. Everything about it just screams that it is a Kleptomaniac Hero's trap, given the circumstances it is found under.
Subverted, since if you took it you can give it back to Nick in Episode Two and he thanks you for it. Meaning you can actually get rewarded by the game for stealing. Although in context, the watch is a valuable token of Pete and Nick's familial bond, so Nick doesn't chew you out because he doesn't even realize you "stole" it; he thinks you deliberately grabbed it just to return it to him.
Clementine ends up fatally wounding a dog after it gave her a near-fatal bite wound. She can end its life mercifully if the player chooses to. And yes, the game makes this as unpleasant as humanly possible. After all, the dog was just as desperate for food as she was...
At the end of Episode 4, either Clementine or Kenny has to shoot Rebecca after she dies and reanimates.
The entirety of Sarah's plotline ends this way. Over the course of three episodes, Clem is given repeated chances to choose whether to be friendly and help Sarah or to be mean and abuse her. She can help Sarah learn to use a gun and seems to be preparing her to finally face the post-apocalyptic world without her father sheltering her. Then Sarah's father dies in front of her, Sarah becomes catatonic, and everything you may have tried to build with her comes to nothing as she inevitably dies being torn apart and screaming for her father before the end of the episode. Even if Clem saves Sarah in the trailer home, Sarah will still be killed by Walkers during the shootout on the observation deck.
Double subverted with Rebecca. After all the effort the group went through to ensure she could give birth safely, it looks like her baby was stillborn, only for the baby to start breathing a few seconds later. However, Rebecca dies of exhaustion at the end of the episode.
Slashed Throat: If the player chooses to Mercy Kill the dog that bit them in episode 1 this is the method that is used to do it.
Stupidity Is the Only Option: Even after Omid tells Clementine to keep an eye on her stuff, you're forced to leave the gun behind while retrieving the water bottle.
In Episode 2, Clem will spot the flashlights of Carver's group approaching from across the bridge. Despite the approaching danger, the game forces Clem and her group to stay in the ski lodge and be utterly surprised when they're suddenly held hostage by armed psychos. To be fair, Clem did tell Rebecca and Alvin about seeing the flashlights, which is what prompted Carlos to say they'd leave at dawn. It's just that "dawn" turned out to be too late.
After seeing the flashlights, Bonnie abruptly appears snooping at the back of the lodge. None of the characters put two and two together.
Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Arvo's group as a whole is reminiscent of The Stranger: if you take or leave the meds, his group attacks you for Jane's treatment of him, rather like the Stranger blaming Lee even if he didn't take his supplies.
Take That: While the scene where Clementine attempts to treat her own dog bite wound is painful to watch, depending on who you ask, it may be making fun of the Heavy Rain pinky chop scene, largely due to the juice box Clem can obtain and sip at will during the scene, much like how the character in Heavy Rain can drink alcohol during his scene.
The Load: Sarah. Her father's sheltering of her from the chaos of the outside world left her inexperienced. Because of this, she often gets herself, and others, in trouble. You can choose to save her or leave her at the trailer park in Episode 4, but she dies shortly after either way.
This Is Gonna Suck: Said word for word by Clementine before she disinfects and stitches her arm. And you know what, it does because the game makes you do every agonizing second of it.
I Thought You Were Dead: Said by Clementine in the trailer for Episode Two, and a possible dialogue option when players reach the scene in the episode itself.
Time Skip: Even if the developers hadn't said that Episode Two starts "months" after the first season ended, it's pretty obvious. Clementine looks a bit older and Christa is big-belly pregnant when she wasn't even showing at the end of the first game. Then there's a sixteen-month time skip from the first scene to the rest of Chapter 1, meaning the bulk of the Chapter and Episode will take place almost three years after the beginning of Season One; interestingly, this puts the game further into the Zombie Apocalypse than any other Walking Dead media, including the original comic.
Took a Level in Jerkass: Can be played straight with Clementine, depending on the choices made. She can go from The Heart of the team to a manipulative survivor who threatens a pregnant woman, taunts a starving dog with food, and manipulates a girl with an Ambiguous Disorder into giving her supplies. Given what happened to her in Season One and the Downer Beginning of Episode Six, she can't entirely be blamed for going off the rails. Christa as well, due to the death of Omid and fate of her child. It's implied her cold demeanor towards Clementine is due to blaming her for Omid's death.
Bonnie seems to have become much more ruthless and cunning since her appearance in 400 Days. Subverted as it turns out to be her assuming that Carver knows what's ultimately best for his settlement; as soon as she realizes just how horrible he is, she lightens up considerably. The rest of the 400 Days crew, however, seem fairly tight-assed if they went with Tavia as well.
Wham Episode: Episode 4. It can be best described as "fuck". To elaborate: Sarita dies, Kenny goes into shock, Sarah dies, Jane leaves, Jane and Luke have sex, Rebecca's baby is born, Rebecca dies, the group is attacked by Russians, presumably killing most if not all of them.
Who's Your Daddy?: Rebecca is heavily pregnant with a baby and doesn't know who among her fellow group of survivors (including her husband) is the father. For bonus points, the Episode Seven trailer makes it seem like a possible former Love Triangle with the leader of the bandits, Carver or even a child of rape.
Answered as of Episode two - it's Carver, and this is why he's so persistent in his pursuit of the group.
Would Hurt a Child: Unfortunately for Clementine, a lot of people are not so reserved about hurting other children. Christa even crossed this the moment she saw Omid get murdered by one as he attempted to save Clementine.
Carver has no problem threatening to shoot Clementine to get Kenny to surrender.
One of Carver's henchmen Troy appears to have no problem with harming children, as he attacks Clementine with the stock of his assault rifle, leaving a nasty wound that's still there as of Amid The Ruins.
Wrong Name Outburst: At dinner, Kenny calls Clementine Duck, making it clear that despite surface appearances he's still somewhat of a wreck.
In Episode one, Clementine lost all her companions, got swept downriver in a rainstorm, and is cold and hungry while lost alone in the woods. However, things start looking back up for her, when she befriends a dog named Sam, finds an old campsite, and comes across a can of beans that are still good. Just when things are looking looking like they will be all right for Clem and her new dog Sam, he (equally desperate for food) attacks her to get at it, rips open her arm, and she fatally wounds him in the struggle. Clem is back to being alone, cold, and hungry.
And later in the same episode after that, the chain gets yanked again when a group does discover Clem so she's no longer alone, so now she can get someplace warm with food...but because of the dog bite they're suspicious of her, and end up locking her in the shed overnight to be sure she's not a walker victim. Once again, back to being alone, cold, and hungry.
Zombie Infectee: The cabin survivors accuse Clementine of this and decided to lock her inside a cabin to see if she'll turn. Of course, her bite wound came from a dog who, decidedly, isn't infected. Pete later gets this if he is saved by Clem, and he ultimately helps her escape before he starts to turn.
Should Clementine not amputate Sarita's arm at the end of In Harms Way, she becomes this during Amid The Ruins.