New Frontier: Thicker than Water brings some much-needed quiet time to the world of Javier and the other survivors. In this penultimate episode of the third season of Telltale’s interactive The Walking Dead series, lower-key decisions are being made, yet several questions still hang in the air. Perhaps these (and more) will be answered in the concluding Episode Five with new hope on the horizon – or damnation for everyone?
Javier, David, and the other survivors made a gruesome discovery last episode: Joan had been making raids on other towns to stock up Richmond. Her reasoning being the town couldn’t handle another long winter without having extra supplies on hand to help everyone survive. She has Javier and David locked up with the promise that she’ll deal with them when the time comes.
David is taken away by Joan, but Javier manages to make his escape to rendezvous with the others. They have nothing to lose at this point and with a zombie herd gathering at the front gates of Richmond, the situation looks as grim as ever. To escape with everyone intact, they’ll have to work together and come up with a plan to not only overcome Joan but to beat the upcoming zombie herd back, too.
The rest of the episode follows this same premise: the calm before the storm, with the focus on gathering supplies and getting prepared for the eventual (hopeful) takedown of Joan. While much of this episode focuses on being stealthy and sneaking around, the concluding minutes are action-packed. This forces the player to make several outcome-heavy decisions throughout the process, including one involving Clementine and AJ about halfway through. No spoilers here!
New Frontier: Thicker than Water is slower paced than much of this Walking Dead series, though this is a welcome change from how earlier episodes seemed to rush Javier and his group of survivors from one hectic situation to the next. The morals are still questionable, and in several cases, the player is forced to make decisions that will likely have a huge impact on how the finale plays out. People’s lives hang in the balance and not everyone will survive to see the eventual downfall, or resurrection, of Richmond.