2023 has brought forth a year of incredibly enjoyable games, but there have also been some disappointments. For me, one of those letdowns has been The Walking Dead: Destinies, which emerged after a lot of hype. After playing this game, one word that encapsulates my feelings about it is ‘abomination.’ Going in, I had a sense that this game might disappoint, considering how terrible The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct was and AMC’s track record with video/mobile games. However, what The Walking Dead: Destinies presents is an absolutely terrible produced game. This article is going to be quite extensive because this game truly frustrated me. So, sit down, relax, and delve into this reading with the terrible aspects of this game.
The Character Models
Let’s address the most apparent issue—the character models in this game are absolutely horrendous. None of these characters resemble their appearances from Seasons 1-4 of the show. Characters like Rick Grimes, Merle Dixon, Carol Peletier, Morgan Jones, Carl Grimes, Shane Walsh, and many others look pretty rough in The Walking Dead Destinies.
The worst example among the bunch has to be Maggie Greene. Just take a look at the photo above. How on earth did they manage to make a character look so dissimilar to Lauren Cohan? I simply can’t comprehend how challenging it was for the developers, especially when the game had the license for every character and you can easily look up a photo of every character.
The Visuals are Poor
Let’s delve deeper into the visuals of this game. Sadly, they’re outright poor. The graphics are horrendous, and the game scenes are presented in a rudimentary PowerPoint-style animation. At times, I felt like I was in a high school class, watching these cutscenes with still images transitioning from slide to slide. The game’s appearance resembles a PS2 game played on a PS5 console. That’s how lackluster and insulting the visual quality is. Additionally, I encountered numerous instances of blurry visuals throughout the game, which greatly affected the overall experience. The game was riddled with glitches, impacting the designs and models of the walkers.
One Legged Hershel Walking
I have to address this because it genuinely made me shake my head in disbelief. The character models and visuals are so poorly done that the developers rendered a one-legged Herschel capable of walking. In the photo above, observe the bottom left of Herschel as the group walks in the prison. His leg is missing, yet there’s a noticeable non-animated leg moving as he walks. It’s perplexing that during the development of this highly hyped game, nobody noticed Herschel’s missing leg and that he was walking without crutches.
The most critical aspect of any video game is its story, which can either save or ruin the overall experience. A prime example of how a story rescued a video game is Mafia 3. Despite its subpar graphics, monotonous gameplay, and repetitive elements, the game was redeemed by its excellent storyline. Conversely, in The Last of Us 2, a game renowned for its exceptional visuals, gameplay, and combat, the downfall was its abysmal storyline.
With this game managing to be focused on Season 1-4 of The Walking Dead Show, it should be a piece of cake right? If you dais yes, you would be incorrect.
First off the game is only 4 hours long which is just way too short nowadays. It is one of the main problems that with Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 campaign as that was way too short which disappointed many. For as much hype of that was build with there being 150 different Ending Variations, 4 hours is just such a letdown.
The story even cut out important plot lines that were important in the actual TV Series and the absolute nonsense of changing so many aspects of scenes that occurred in the show. How the heck was the CDC story not even explored as a what if in my opinion. Some of the choices that were offered I did not like either as they were done at perplexing times. Here is the major problem with the story in my opinion as well…..
The major issue with the story is the absence of crucial plot points and characters. The noticeable absence of key figures like Andrea, Jimmy, Patricia, Jim, Tara, Dr. Jenner, the entire prison group, several significant Woodbury characters, and even Otis is striking. This absence significantly affects certain choices in the game and diverges completely from the main TV storyline. One notable example (SPOILER ALERT) is the choice presented where players have to choose between medicine, Beth, or Maggie Greene and then a later choice to choose the medicine for Carl, or killing Beth/Maggie in a stupid scene. This choice contradicts the TV series where Otis accompanies Shane to the school in a similar scenario.
The Boss Fights are Terrible
The Boss Fights are just a total waste of time and bore in this game. Not one boss fight that I played was enjoyable at all. The worst one is the Rick and Shane boss fight which was a massive disappointment. You have to shoot either Rick or Shane depending on who you choose. Which is all thrown out the window when a horde of walkers approach and you have to battle both the walkers and either Shane or Rick. Whoever the enemy is just avoids who you are fighting in that boss fight. Frankly, it was so nonsensical that I felt like I was rewatching the Thor: Ragnarok movie and lost brain cells in the process.
The Andrew fight at the prison is equally bad. It involves shutting down alarm generators amid irritatingly blurry smoke. Moreover, in the boss fight, the walkers don’t even attack Andrew, the main enemy, which is just absurd. It’s clear that the developers overlooked these critical flaws, failing to test or consider the logic behind these encounters.
The Gameplay is Garbage
The gameplay in Destinies is an absolute mess. It emphasizes a Stealth & Combat approach, where the stealth aspect involves finding bottles scattered around the game to distract walkers and dispatch them quietly. However, the most irritating aspect is the repetitive and out-of-character dialogue uttered by the characters during these actions. It feels forced and disrupts immersion within The Walking Dead universe.
Moreover, the stealth mechanics involving hiding in bushes, grass, and smoke are poorly executed and badly animated. Inconsistent with the lore established in the TV series, the game portrays walkers as primarily attracted by sight rather than smell, which contradicts the established rules about walkers’ behavior and their sense of smell. It’s a baffling deviation that undermines the authenticity of the game’s connection to the original series and is another indicator that the creators of the game, didn’t watch the show.
The Combat Sucks
The combat is focused on stamina, and it is one of the most broken parts of this game. After just a few walkers fighting them, the character gets weak. The combat is also very weak as well with the basic mechanics and weapons. Even when you upgrade the character the melee attacks are just so bland that it is similar with every character. No stand out attacks for every character, just same old boring attack then curb stop Seth Rollins style.
When Walkers have a hold of you the game forces you to mash random buttons in order to get the walker off of you. I got to say it is in every game and does not make the combat stand out. Even the combat with human AI’s is an absolute mess as well.
BTW do not activate Auto Aim when playing the game as it is an absolute mess and is so broken. The only good shootable weapons in the game is the revolver and the shotgun. Besides that all the weapons are a mess and have the same feeling as a PS2 video game.
In Conclusion, This Game Was a Blatant Cash Grab
It’s incredibly disappointing to witness how The Walking Dead franchise, especially in the realm of video games, has taken a nosedive. AMC’s track record with games tied to the series, be it mobile or console, has been consistently disappointing. This latest release is no exception—it’s nothing more than a blatant cash grab.
The disrespect shown in this game extends to multiple parties—the Walking Dead universe, its devoted fanbase, and anyone who invested hard-earned money expecting a decent gaming experience. Both AMC and Fluex Games should be ashamed for delivering such a subpar product. It’s disheartening to see how they’ve repeatedly prioritized financial gain over delivering quality content. I mean the insane amount of severe bugs such as losing sound, clipping through objects, janky frame rate and broken level design goes to show that they did not even test the game. Heck even the launch was a mess as well.
As a long-time fan of The Walking Dead, it’s disheartening to witness the franchise’s decline. From the underwhelming expansions to the disappointing conclusion of the main TV show and the overall decline of quality in Fear The Walking Dead, it’s evident that AMC has lost sight of honoring the series’ essence. This game had the potential to be unique and impressive, but it’s clear that AMC didn’t put in the effort to make it so.
AMC had the chance to craft a remarkable game, one that would resonate with fans, but instead, they chose the quick, low-quality route to make a profit. I haven’t played it yet, but I’m not optimistic about it.
I’ve reached my limit with AMC-associated games. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me. I refuse to be misled for a third time. To anyone reading this, I strongly advise against buying this game. It’s an outright scam. Save your money for games that truly deserve your investment, because this game does not deserve it.
Walking Dead Destinies will is available to play digitally now on PC, PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S. Physical versions will launch in December 2023.