In a virtual event with The Game Awards host Geoff Keighley, the reborn Telltale headed by CEO Jamie Ottilie and developer Nick Herman talked about the much-anticipated game. The original Telltale Games title came out in 2013 and 2014 as an episodic series.
The trailer takes place at The Good Sleep Motel. It shows characters that are coming back (Bigby) as well as new ones (from The Wizard of Oz) joining what Telltale is calling Season 2. The original depicted a gritty detective noir world with fairy tale characters but no fairy tale endings and a lot of violence.
The Wolf Among Us has characters known as Fables, based on fairy tales, within a secret part of New York City dubbed Fabletown. The new game takes place six months after the events of Season One, and the Fables don’t behave as you expect them to.
“These characters subvert your idea of what they’re like,” said Herman, co-director of AdHoc Studio and director of the new game.
Herman said there are more options for gameplay than in the past, but it is still rooted in cinematic storytelling and presenting tough choices to the players.
The studio is using a customized version of Unreal. While it’s stylized with comic-style animation, you can tell it looks a lot better than the original.
After the trailer premiere, we saw a series of interviews, hosted by Keighley and conducted inside Godmother’s Bar, on a virtual set captured from inside the game using a state-of-the-art green screen stage, the Unreal engine, and proprietary tools built specifically for the game.
They discussed new and returning characters in the sequel, some of the game’s key themes, working with a new Unreal-based engine, and how the development process for the new season differs from that of the first game.
Also on hand were Adam Harrington and Erin Yvette, the voice actors for the game’s beloved lead characters “Bigby” (the Big Bad Wolf) and “Snow” (Snow White) to discuss what it’s like to revisit the world of Fabletown and these characters.
Harrington said at the event that it was like coming home to family. He said they have to meet expectations or “heads are going to roll.” Yvette said like the fans she is excited for Season 2 “that we all deserve.” Harrington said that Snow has put Bigby on a “time out.”
Key details revealed include the introduction of The Scarecrow and Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz, and a new “Mundy” (human) character named Faye Leung, a New York detective who figures prominently in the new key art.
The original game was set 20 years before the events of the comics. Season Two finds Bigby suspended from his sheriff duties and attending anger management therapy, just one of the many internal struggles the character will face as he tries to discover where he best fits in The Wolf Among Us 2. Snow is now deputy mayor and she has a conflict with Bigby.
“There is a shift in the dynamic between the two,” Yvette said.
“The Wolf Among Us world is such a distinctively rich one and, after all this time, we felt it important to update our community and the fans in a meaningful way,” said Ottilie. “What better way to do it than to invite them to sit down for a chat with us on location actually inside the game itself.”
The Wolf Among Us 2 was first announced in December 2019 at The Game Awards, shortly after the Telltale brand was rescued and relaunched. The original Telltale Games pioneered episodic games with deep storylines, such as The Walking Dead. But the company spread itself thin and stumbled with various titles. It went under in 2018.
Ottilie led a team that bought the assets of Telltale out of bankruptcy. The studio has since remained quiet while in production, only recently divulging the game takes place six months after the first season, that all five episodes are being developed all at once, and they will be released in a tighter cadence than past Telltale games. The series will still be episodic, but with weeks in between installments instead of months.
Ottilie said the company took a lot of time to stand the company back up and most of the time the team has been in pre-production on The Wolf Among Us 2. Ottilie and Herman said there will be five episodes.
“We’re in production and actively doing motion capture shoots,” Ottilie said.
The Wolf Among Us 2: A Telltale Series is licensed by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment on behalf of DC and is expected to release (based on the trailer) for PC, PlayStation 5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One. Malibu, California-based Telltale, an independent publisher, is also working on a game based on The Expanse. Ottilie said the company’s efforts are being led by the creative teams. Telltale has more info on its social channels.
Fables comics is also making its return as well, Keighley said.