I very much enjoyed Minecraft: Story Mode – Episode 1: The Order of the Stone and was excited to jump back into the world and see what lies in store for Jesse and his friends next. To me Minecraft: Story Mode – Episode 2: Assembly Required feels slightly shorter, but for me this didn’t matter as the gameplay offers more choices and narrative decisions. At the end of the first episode you have to make a choice on where to head to next, much like other TellTale games. In my case it was Jesse and Olivia trying to track down Ellegaard, the legendary redstone engineer. Regardless of which path you choose; the latter half of the episode basically plays out the same with slight differences as is more usual depending on which character you opted to save from the Wither Storm in Episode One.
I really liked how the choices you make really do impact the direction the story and character development take. This offers replayabiltiy and reason to play through for a second time. Choice aside, Ellegaard and Magnus both have interesting scenes. Magnus’ storyline, is an action-packed journey through Boomtown, and Ellegaard’s sequence, as the Redstone Engineer, cuts explosive moments with puzzles. The areas in episode two are certainly more varied and interesting in terms of style. Fans of Minecraft will certainly enjoy the references and throwbacks to the original game and TellTale have managed to blend their style of gameplay really well with the world of Minecraft.
The gameplay consists of a mix of adventure game style puzzles, action sequences and dialogue choices. TellTale have managed to use the puzzles in the story in a way that actually have impact on the story. The major choice, between who to save in the first episode, hasn’t had much of a difference on the impact of the story so far. It will be interesting to see how the various characters develop and how they will impact the narrative later on in the game.
Minecraft Story Mode feels more active than the rest of Telltale’s games and I imagine this is done so to appeal to a younger audience. The game still has moments though that adults can also enjoy. Disappointingly, this episode lacks the entertaining mining and crafting from the first episode. It would have been nice to have seen these elements used more frequently in this episode.
The overall presentation of Minecraft: Story Mode – Episode 2: Assembly Required again looks fantastic. The various environments you visit are bold, vibrant and interesting to explore. The graphics and style again capture the essence and feel of Minecraft. TellTale and Mojang have made sure to not only create a compelling story, but also stay true to what Minecraft is about. I have enjoyed the first two episodes so far because of the characters and elements of humor that are sprinkled throughout. The writing is still interesting, with the jokes being relatively simple. I also like how there are references and throwbacks to the original Minecraft game.
You take on Ghasts and find yourself in chase sequences that keep episode 2 engaging throughout. Minecraft: Story Mode gives players the world they love in a new and interesting way. While Episode 1 features a few technical glitches, Episode 2’s issues are much more apparent. I noticed a couple of character glitches, but nothing game breaking. The main action happens at the end of the episode, which involves fighting and quick time events. I was a bit disappointed that it suddenly comes to an end leaving a teaser for the next episode. This made the overall experience of episode 2 feeling a bit empty.
Overall I enjoyed Minecraft: Story Mode – Episode 2: Assembly Required. It felt like a much shorter episode than Episode 1: The Order of the Stone, which was a shame, but the choices you make and routes you take do offer a second playthrough. The gameplay feels varied enough and the puzzles do at times actually impact the route in which the narrative drives forward. Again the voice acting and music in the game is fantastic and helps to improve the overall experience. I’m still excited to find out what happens next in Minecraft: Story Mode, but I would have liked to have seen a little more depth and character development in this episode. Its still worth playing as I feel there’s certainly a lot more to come.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation 4 code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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