The Wolf Among Us – Episode 5: Cry Wolf Review

Gaming

The Wolf Among Us – Episode 5: Cry Wolf
Developer: Telltale Games
Publisher: Telltale Games, Warner Bros.
Platform: XBLA (Reviewed), PS3, PC, Mac, iOS
Release Date: July 9th, 2014
Price: $4.99 – Available Here

Overview
The final episode of The Wolf Among Us is finally here, which means that it’s time to see how this story comes to a close. What started out as a simple murder investigation flourished into a much deeper look into the Fabletown community and how Bigby handled it every step of the way. While previous episodes suffered from a lack of exploration and actually finding clues to piece together, it will be interesting to see if the trend continues through here or remain much more focused on the dialogue. Let’s see what Episode 5: “Cry Wolf” has to offer.

Story
The previous episode, “In Sheep’s Clothing”, left off in a fairly large cliffhanger, with Bigby finally confronting the Crooked Man, who appears to be at the heart of Fabletown’s current problems. Unfortunately, the room is also filled to the brim with all of Crooked Man’s associates, which means that it won’t be as easy as just taking the man into custody. It is easy to guess what will happen next as other character’s have previously noted that “everything” goes to shit when Bigby is around and of course this is no different.

So, while the previous episode dealt with Bigby and Snow trying to find Crooked Man’s hideout location, “Cry Wolf” sees Bigby trying to find and detain those that actually took part in the murders. With all the choices that players have been given however and the choices presented here as well, it is easy to see just how different things can be depending on what players had done previously, as well as how they handle the chase, whether to chase after the true murder or the shot caller.

Actually getting to those responsible in fact is just another set of worms and choices, as surprisingly players have quite a bit of personal choice as to what happens to the perpetrators. The story doesn’t just end with getting whatever justice the players choose, but are forced to face their actions from the past episodes and ultimately see how the community feels about how the justice should go as well. This adds another level of complexity that is both surprising and entirely welcome, as to whether the player’s choices as Bigby have really been for the best.

After the justice has been matted out, thankfully the story doesn’t just end and players are offered a look into how the Fabletown community has changed thanks to Bigby’s efforts or lack of effort. The epilogue covers just about every major character and where they fit into the community now, from Toad and his son, to Flycatcher, and Nerissa now that there has been some form of justice for the death of her friends. However, not every single aspect is wrapped up in a nice neat bow, so it is entirely possible that there is more to explore in the Fables universe, which would certainly be welcome.

Gameplay
Like the previous episodes the style of gameplay remains almost entirely the same, though there feels as if there is a lot more action in this Episode than previous ones. Much of the decisions are made through dialogue options as Bigby decides what to say to everyone, but the additional dynamic choices in combat or other action sequences is certainly a nice change of pace. Best yet, is that when dealing with how to finally deal with the big bad there isn’t a binary choice of how to handle it, instead having a much more complicated set of choices to make about what the punish is they should receive.

There is still the considerable lack of exploration, and as with Episode 4, there is a major lack of things to look at and explore. This can be a little understandable as the driving force of the episode was bringing the bad guys to justice, but even during the epilogue all Bigby really does is talk to the other Fables, but could have been a great opportunity to actually look around the Business Office and see what has changed with Snow getting put in charge or side conversations with lesser characters. While it is still a great ending, being part of an adventure game it would have been nice to get one last chance to just take a moment and experience the little details.

Visuals & Audio
While Episode 5 doesn’t have any new characters to show off, there are a few new character designs for some of the characters players have already met. The biggest one being of course Bigby’s true form, which after 5 episodes of lead up to is just as fantastic and over powered as anyone could hope from an 8 foot tall wolf. The other new character design is the fable-version of Bloody Mary who has now been a thorn in Bigby’s side for 3 episodes. The voice acting is still just as well executed as previous episodes and continue to impress with how well they work despite the choice of dialogue option and emotion situation. The voice acting is by far the one of the best aspects of The Wolf Among Us as a whole and the most consistent.

Overall
After 5 episodes of chasing down the murder of the two girls in the first episode, “Cry Wolf” provides a conclusion that fits the tone, style, and nature of the world of Fables, as well as gives plenty of options as to how justice should be met. While it still has a slight lacking in the exploration department, this episode has more action to help combat the small overuse of dialogue in the previous episode. With art and sound that stands up to the quality expected of a Telltale game, the conclusion of The Wolf Among Us gives almost everything one could hope for in an adventure game.

Capsule Computers review guidelines can be found here.

Bachelor of Science in Game and Simulation Programming

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