Telltale Games have been well received over the years, but also often received criticism due to their tendency to be predictable with few opportunities for the player to do anything but choose conversation paths. Now that the company is coming to a close, it’s come to light that there were plans in the works to change all that.
Telltale Games was evidently working on some new ideas for games, including a new zombie game not based on The Walking Dead. This game would have retained the art style that Telltale was known for, but would have drastically shaken up its game formula. The unnamed zombie title would have contained a mix of hand-made and procedurally generated events, more gameplay, and a healthy mix of strategy that would require the player to organize unique NPCs and build bases to survive the zombie apocalypse.
Surprisingly, Telltale was primarily focusing on a mobile audience for the game. The developer did consider including consoles in the mix, but it wasn’t the main goal. However, it was all for naught, as the title was ultimately cancelled when Telltale laid off 25% of its employees in November of 2017. According to the former team members, it was too difficult for the developer to find the time to dedicate to the new concept alongside its rapid-fire release schedule for multiple titles.
Although the new zombie title may have boosted the opinion of gamers who were tired of the Telltale formula, but it may have had no impact on the ultimate fate of the company. Telltale Games produced several impressive titles over the last few years that were well-received by gamers and critics alike, and gained two Netflix contracts to produce a series and game based off Minecraft: Story Mode and Stranger Things, respectively, and still, it shut down.
Telltale Games’ closure is the end of an era, and sadly comes just as the company was looking towards innovation to refresh its arguably tired game formula. Considering the timeline, it’s highly likely that it wouldn’t have been far along enough in development at this point to even make an impact on the decision to close the studio, especially considering the currently-running The Walking Dead: Final Season was canceled despite only being halfway through its release schedule.