The drama might not be as heightened as something like The Walking Dead, but I still found myself surprisingly invested in the choices I had to make about my companions, undeveloped as they may be, and smiling at the Minecrafty in-jokes.
It’s a pleasant start, packed with individual events but featuring little in the way of narrative propulsion. When I reached the end of this episode, I wanted more. I’m hoping that, like most outstanding Minecraft creations, Minecraft: Story Mode just needs a little more time to build.
So far, Minecraft: Story Mode is like a Saturday morning cartoon. Sure, there is conflict, but it doesn’t feel dire. Sure, there are funny bits, but the comedy isn’t sharp or intelligent. Sure, there is a story, but it doesn’t feel like it matters yet.
Minecraft fans should enjoy the references to the game, while Telltale fans will enjoy the traditional storytelling elements they’ve come to expect from the studio. The Order of the Stone grabs your attention at a number of points and sets you down the path of actually caring about what’s going on in a story set in the player-driven Minecraft universe.
It’s nothing particularly new, as Telltale games go, but I think that playing with a more family-friendly property has been good for the studio. Those trademark life or death choices were getting a little contrived, so it’s nice to just hang around with a likeable group of characters and go off on a fun, mostly light-hearted adventure. With the occasional eldritch abomination thrown in.
Minecraft: Story Mode is off to a good start, and despite a story-less canvas and only in-game references to draw from, developer Telltale has crafted something promising.