As a quick overview for those who are unaware: Telltale’s Games: The Wolf Among Us is set in the same universe as Fables, a DC comics/Vertigo series in which the characters from fairytales and children’s stories, such as Snow White, Beauty and the Beast, and Cinderella relocate to the real world. More specifically, a portion of New York called Fabletown. A large part of their existence is based on not being exposed to real people, whom they call Mundies. Many of the fable characters use magical spells called glamours to disguise themselves. In the game, you star as the Big Bad Wolf, or in this case Bigby Wolf, whose responsibility as Sheriff requires him to keep Fabletown safe.
“In Sheep’s Clothing” is the fourth episode of the series and is the follow-up on an episode that was compelling and had an exciting closing scene. Unfortunately for those of us who have been eagerly awaiting the next episode, “In Sheep’s Clothing” does little to move the story forward and gives us even less of the gameplay we have come to enjoy in Episodes 1-3. Thus far, The Wolf Among Us has been an engaging mystery; the titular Wolf plays the role of detective and is attempting to find the culprit behind some awful crimes. In Episodes 1-3, the player gets the opportunity to ask questions based on hunches. However, there is very little of that gameplay here. “In Sheep’s Clothing” gives the player some very obvious clues, and there are very few changes in the scenario based on the player’s chosen responses to the conversation prompts.
[pullquote]it does a good job of making the player interested in the next and final episode of the season[/pullquote]As a positive, “In Sheep’s Clothing” has a very cool opening scene. But aside from a combat scene midway through, this episode goes downhill from said opening; as you are essentially left with a very limited number of places you will be required to visit. The only aspect under the player’s control is the order in which Bigby conducts these visits. In typical Telltale Games fashion, the encounters change slightly based on the order you choose. What felt off-putting is the fact that the game flat out tells the player that the order you choose will change the encounters slightly. Telltale Games’ style holds the player’s hands enough as it is; I personally do not need to have every detail pointed out to me. There is another scene early in the game that essentially tells us how the crimes we are investigating took place, and it does so in a dead giveaway that makes two of the first three episodes feel like a waste of time.
Additionally, The Wolf Among Us – Episode 4 carries some of the same negatives as other Telltale games; there was some choppiness. Fortunately, it was not as bad as it has been in previously releases, so I am glad to see the improvement.
The previously mentioned combat scene is worth mentioning again, as it is some of the best “combat” we have seen in a Telltale game. You do battle with a very interesting character ripped out of American folklore. The fight is well orchestrated, enjoyable, and served as one of the highlights of “In Sheep’s Clothing”. Unfortunately, there is not much more to the story, as Episode 4, “In Sheep’s Clothing” has an incredibly short run-time. I was able to play through the scenario twice, making different choices, in less than 4 hours. As another positive, the final scene puts Bigby in a precarious situation with what appears to be the main villain in this series. While that remaining to be seen, it does a good job of making the player interested in the next and final episode of the season, and it acts as Episode 4’s saving grace.
In summary, what we have here is a bit of a letdown of an episode, one that fails to reach the heights of the previous three. Fortunately, we have been set up for what could be a really good ending. As a fan of Telltale’s games, I have confidence that, as consumers, we will be provided with everything we need in Episode 5, “Cry Wolf”. Unfortunately, “In Sheep’s Clothing” will be remembered as the low point of the season.
Project Fandom gives Telltale Games: The Wolf Among Us, Episode 4 “In Sheep’s Clothing” a 6.5 out of 10.