Last week, news broke that Telltale Games, the developer of The Walking Dead and several other episodic adventure games based on popular licenses, was undergoing a “majority studio closure,” laying off all but 25 of its employees and leaving the fate of its current projects up in the air. It was an unexpected announcement, particularly given that it came just before the release of The Walking Dead: The Final Season‘s second episode, but at least one former developer would still like players to enjoy it.
In a post on Reddit, Michael Kirkbride, the former season lead designer on The Walking Dead: The Final Season, shared his thoughts on the situation and encouraged players to play through the upcoming episode. “In a couple of days the second episode of WD4 drops and I just wanted to make sure to let you know it’s something pretty special. AJ, Clem, Vi, Louis, and all the rest move forward in interesting and unexpected directions, so I hope everyone plays it despite how absof***ingborked the rest of this situation is,” Kirkbride wrote.
“And I’d like to clarify that none of us that poured everything we had into this episode (and what would’ve been the follow ups) had any idea this would happen. We were just excited to give you all the best ending to Clementine’s journey that we could. Maybe a bit of understanding on that end will encourage you to at least give the episode a play, even if it’ll be uniquely placed in the tragic history of Telltale’s efforts.
“We know it’s weird, we know it sucks, we know it’s sad in ways that’s almost impossible to articulate, and we know it’s awful that we can’t tell you what would’ve happened after, but the episode is also just goddamn good, and the best feeling we could have right now is to know it’s being played.”
Telltale had four episodes planned for The Walking Dead: The Final Season, along with a number of other projects in the works, such as a second season of The Wolf Among Us and a game based on the Stranger Things series. With the vast majority of the studio laid off, however, it’s unclear just what the fate of these projects will be. Telltale has only said that it will “issue further comments regarding its product portfolio in the coming weeks,” although in a letter to fans, Clementine’s voice actress says no more episodes of The Walking Dead will be released.