Why The Walking Dead Isn’t In Black And White

Why The Walking Dead Isn’t In Black And White

Telltale’s Walking Dead video game has been great so far; better and truer to the source material than the less-than-great TV show.

But when I first started it up, I couldn’t help but wonder why it was in colour. The game is cell-shaded and looks for all the world like a moving comic book, but Kirkman, Moore and Adlard’s books are in stark black and white.

I visited with Telltale during E3 to check out the game’s second episode, and took the opportunity to ask writer and designer Mark Darin whether we’d ever get a black and white option for the game.

“It was one of the first things we thought of,” Darin said, “but they just figured out that you can have a still image and have it be black and white and look absolutely beautiful and pristine, but when you start moving around in a 3D world, it starts to become kinda muddy. They really did want to do it, they wanted to have that option available, but it just didn’t make sense so they pulled it.”

It’s too bad — the comic-book-style colour can sometimes make The Walking Dead look too cartoony (despite its wonderfully dark overall tone and vibe). As that image up top shows, if the game could’ve worked in black and white, it would have been even closer to the books’ gritty vibe than it already is.

I’ll more more in-depth thoughts on the next episode of The Walking Dead, which releases later this winter, next week.


  • I had to re-read the first sentence a few times because I thought you described the tv show as less than great? For real? Ah well, each to their own.

  • Hang on, something’s wrong…A telltale game is great and the walking dead tv show is less than great? Is it opposits day?

  • God dammit my biggest pet hate is when journalists add their own little opinion to an article. Leave that for the comments section… I for one think the TV show IS great, so your article just ended up pissing me off.

  • “Less than great” is a little harsh. Sure the show has problems (mostly pacing and minor character issues) but it still holds up rather well for a TV show. It will be interesting to see how dark Season 3 goes. I think everyone who has read the comic has a pretty good idea where the cliffhanger should be. 😀

  • Yep agreed. People who focus on writing news pieces shouldn’t be inserting their snotty little opinion. Just bring us the facts and be quiet. Be objective and not subjective.

    • Then they sacked Frank Darabont and it got better!!!! Around episode 9 it gets so much better. That signals the end of Darabonts influence, when Mazarra took over and the pace finally kicks into high gear. For me, season 3 will be make or break :\

  • Tv show is good especially when compared to the majority of the crap that we have on TV

    The source material it’s based on should have led to a far greater show which if you were comics first could lead to a less than great view of the show.

    AMC’s shitty treatment of it hasn’t helped things though.

    But the fact that the pilot is still the best episode of the walking dead says something about the quality in my mind

    Hell the show would improve immensely if they just stopped letting everyone act like morons

  • It may be less than “great” and meerly very good but at least just like Game of thrones there nothing else like it on TV.

  • If the image above says anything….

    Did the dude listen to what he said? It looks great in stills, but it sucks when it’s in motion. Seriously, what an idiot.

  • Did you even listen to a word that Mark Darin said – which you subsequentially quoted ? He quite clearly noted that you can have it working as a still image, but not in motion. Shoddy article. -_-

  • I love the books and TV show, and haven’t had a chance yet to play the game yet.

    But I have to agree with the game being in colour, It works better.

  • The show is OK compared to all the really bad TV out there. However when compared to the source material, and when compared to other shows of substance and quality (Game of Thrones, The Wire, The Shield, Deadwood, Boardwalk Empire, Rome, etc) the Walking Dead tv series is weak. The last episode of season 2 was better than any of the episodes of season 2, but still not stellar.

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