Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow
With the announcement that Telltale Games are facing “majority studio closure” it appears that the masterminds behind episodic epics like The Walking Dead, The Wolf Among Us, Batman and Tales from the Borderlands are about to close the door for good. While this means that many of their planned projects may never see the light of day, we can at least find some small amount of comfort in the knowledge they have left behind a legacy of some of gaming’s most heartbreaking and impactful moments in modern memory.
#5: Reuben’s Death
“Minecraft: Story Mode” (2015-16)
Since the beginning, Reuben was Jesse’s pet pig –as loyal and dependable as any dog. In the final duel with the Wither Storm, Reuben fetches Jesse’s sword to finally end this nightmare… but he slips and plunges into the caverns below. When we find him after the battle, he’s too mortally wounded …and dies surrounded by his best friend and comrades. It’s weird to feel this much sadness for an animal you’d normally kill for food, but Reuben was more than your average swine, he stuck by us until the end and helped saved the world –and Jesse vows to make sure that this brave piglet is never forgotten.
#4: Goodbye, Handsome Jack
“Tales from the Borderlands” (2014-15)
Just when we thought we’ve seen the last of Handsome Jack, he returns as an A.I. inside the mind of his biggest fan, Rhys. Eventually, Rhys tries to force Jack out of his head –by graphically ripping out his own cybernetic implants. Near the end, Jack is on his hands and knees pathetically pleading for his life. Rhys always wanted to follow in Jack’s footsteps, but finally sees the real face of his former idol – a sad, psychotic loser desperate for the power he lost upon his death. In the end, his groveling can’t save him, and Rhys can decide whether to keep Jack trapped in the A.I. Chip… or permanently rid the world of him.
#3: “No Going Back” Endings
“The Walking Dead: Season Two” (2013-14)
In the Season Two finale, Clementine is left traveling with newcomer Jane, Kenny from Season One, and little baby A.J. –and tensions are high between Jane and Kenny. Things soon evolve into an all-out brawl when Jane pulls a twisted trick to show that Kenny can’t be trusted, which leads Clem to make the awful choice: shoot Kenny, or let him kill Jane. Neither results in a happy ending – Kenny snaps and murders a misguided woman in blind fury, or Jane’s twisted plan causes you to put down one of your oldest friends. Afterwards, Clem can either stay with the survivor or take A.J. and go off to face the world alone.
#2: One of Us Has to Stay
“Game of Thrones” (2014-15)
During an ambush against the Whitehills, Asher and Rodrik Forrester are this close to the gates of freedom… but only one of the brothers can escape. Whoever stays behind will give it their all, fighting enemy soldiers left and right… before they’re finally overpowered, and slain gruesomely. Face it, in a “Game of Thrones” video game, death is pretty much guaranteed; however, what really makes this one so heartbreaking is that YOU have to decide which brother gives their life. While the chosen brother’s story ends, the survivor’s will go on into the finale, as they struggle to avenge their fallen family by any means.
#1: Clementine and Lee’s Goodbyes
“The Walking Dead” (2012)
Ever since they met, Lee has acted like a second father to Clementine – protecting, caring, and even teaching her how to survive. However, tragedy strikes when Lee gets bitten by a walker, and despite his best efforts to delay turning, he only gets worse. In the final scene of the season, there’s only two options left – Clem can either shoot Lee out of mercy, or get away to safety… and leave him to be reanimated as a walker. Whatever Lee suggests, it teaches Clem one of the hardest lessons she’ll need to know on her long journey of survival: how to say goodbye to those you’ve come to love.
Be sure to check out the video below to see our picks for the Top 10 Impossible Choices in Telltale Games.