It goes without saying that Episode 2 of Telltale’s Minecraft Story Mode picks up where the first episode left off, but it is notable because the decisions from episode 1 take the player in one of two directions. Without spoiling either of these short, but fun, offerings, your created character will go forth on an adventure to rejoin a group of legendary heroes. Episode 1’s choices will decide which member you seek first. Regardless of the hero you seek to find, you will return to your home base and discover that these heroes are not as legendary as they seem. Quite honestly, aside from the hero introduced in episode 1, these “legends” are whiny and petulant.
Despite my criticism of the heroes’ personality, Episode 2, “Assembly Required” is a lot of fun. This episode comes with the standard Telltale “action scenes,” which are basically quick time events; but unlike some of the developer’s recent games, these are less involved. This is a positive, because the simplistic approach to action matches the game’s blocky presentation. More importantly, everything about these action sequences fits comfortably into the Minecraft universe.
Even more important is that “Assembly Required” cements that Minecraft Story Mode is a Telltale game that can be enjoyed by children. The source material, the now Microsoft owned sandbox game, is a phenomenon for people of all ages, but most Telltale games are adult-oriented. The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Tales from the Borderlands, and The Wolf Among Us, all include visceral action. Minecraft Story Mode has a plot, there’s an adventure, and even some suspense, but the game does not take itself too seriously. This is particularly important as video games have grown into an industry that caters to the 18-35 age demographic. Aside from Nintendo’s offerings, Lego games, Disney Infinity and Skylanders, safe and fun video game options for kids are limited. With Episode 2 of Minecraft Story Mode, it is obvious that the developer wanted a title that was palatable for the child and for the adult similar to a Pixar or Disney film.
Unfortunately, Episode 2 of Telltale’s Minecraft Story Mode is incredibly short. Other than the journey to find a particular hero, there is not much that occurs to move the story forward. However, the short length means it is certainly worth a replay to enjoy the portion of the adventure and find a different hero. If you can only do one play through, let me suggest finding Ellegaard over Magnus. Despite your choices, this episode is the continuation of something memorable and is certainly worth experiencing.
Minecraft Story Mode - Episode 2
Pros: Suitable for all ages, high replay value
Cons: Incredibly short, whiny heroes