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Be afraid, be very afraid: The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct arrives March 26

The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Earlier today, worldwide mega-publisher Activision announced that The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct will be released for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U and PC platforms on March 26. As usual, the game is delayed slightly in Europe, but it should be available on that side of the Atlantic by March 29.

“Uh, wait, which Walking Dead game is this again?” we assume you’re silently wondering to yourself. Glad you asked! That’s actually the most confusing part of this situation. About five years after Robert Kirkman started writing his Walking Dead graphic novels, AMC approached him with the idea of adapting the series into a television program. As you may have heard that show is something of a massive success, so it’s little surprise that other media companies would also want a piece of the undead pie. Kirkman hasn’t been shy about sharing his universe and as a result there are currently two separate Walking Dead games.

This one, The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct, is a first-person shooter based not on the comics, but instead on AMC’s TV adaptation. It drops players into the stereotypically racist shoes of brothers Merle and Daryl Dixon (portrayed by Michael Rooker and Norman Reedus on the show) and presumably includes hordes of shambling corpses that would benefit from a crossbow bolt through the eye. This stands in direct contrast to Telltale Games’ The Walking Dead, which was an episodic adventure game released over the course of 2012. As you may recall, it was the first game to ever earn a perfect 10/10 review score from Digital Trends, and it then went on to earn our Best Game of 2012 award. 

Unfortunately for Activision and Terminal Reality, we have far less faith that their Walking Dead game will prove as excellent as Telltale’s. About a week ago footage leaked from The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct that depicted a very bright game with ugly art assets that seemed to be either far from complete or simply lacking any sort of professional polish. The clip has since been stricken from the ‘net by Activision’s lawyers, but it left an indelible mark on anyone who saw it. Realizing that this leaked vignette made its game look horrible, Activision has released a new, official trailer for The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct which you can find embedded below. It doesn’t show any gameplay footage or really anything that players might actually want to see, but it does include release date information and seemingly disinterested cameos from both Michael Rooker and Norman Reedus. That’s something, right?

Earnest Cavalli
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Earnest Cavalli has been writing about games, tech and digital culture since 2005 for outlets including Wired, Joystiq…
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