It’s official: Skybound Entertainment will release the final episodes in Season 4 of Telltale’s The Walking Dead.
Skybound, for those who don’t know, is the publishing label co-founded by The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman. The company’s been a longtime partner on Telltale’s series, and even formally announced an intention to finish the series after Telltale closed down in September.
The early October announcement noted that Skybound would endeavor to “work with members of the original Telltale team to finish the story in a way the fans deserve.” But the company shared no further details at the time, and all’s been quiet ever since.
Until now. Skybound confirmed its plans in a Monday post on the company’s website. There are still lots of questions to be answered — notably including which former members of Telltale are signed on for the gig — but it locks in what fans have wanted to hear: The final two episodes will see the light of day.
Here’s the full announcement:
Thank you for your patience while we worked with Telltale to take control of TELLTALE’S THE WALKING DEAD. It’s been a ton of work logistically and legally to get us to a place where we’re able to roll up our sleeves and get to the actual work. After Telltale shut its doors, the game was, unfortunately, unable to be worked on and hence the release dates of Episodes 3 and 4 have been delayed. But, we’re excited to let you know that many of the talented, passionate team members who originally worked on the game are resuming development efforts today!
Soon, we will be announcing release dates for the two remaining episodes. It’s likely that previous seasons of the game may be unavailable to purchase for a few days as we transition—but don’t panic!—we’ll have everything back online ASAP. If you already purchased Season Four, you will NOT have to pay again; future episodes will be available to download as soon as they are released via your original point of purchase.
Please continue to check back here on our Skybound site for future updates on the game!
A few things to note here.
That first line, about Skybound working with Telltale to “take control” of the series, is important. The now-shuttered company is in the process of liquidating its assets, as GameDaily.biz discovered on Nov. 14. So it’s probably more apt to call this series “Skybound’s The Walking Dead” now.
Less clear is who’s actually building these final episodes. Skybound’s announcement notes that “many of the talented, passionate team members who originally worked on the game are resuming development efforts.”
That’s great. Telltale’s closure was very sudden and the layoffs left this large group of people out of work and with no safety net. Of course there’s creative value in having that same team — or as much of them as possible, since some have since moved on to other jobs — finish what they started. But it’s also just the right thing to do.
Who is it though? Stories of poor working conditions at industry mainstays like Rockstar Games and Riot Games (Telltale too) blew up in 2018. Fans of video games are more interested than they’ve been before in the wellbeing of the people who make the games we play. So having more specifics on that would be great.
That’s not a knock on Skybound, to be clear. It’s clear the publisher is just getting started on this journey, and there’s a good chance that many of the specifics are still being ironed out. But across two announcements now, Skybound has emphasized its interest in working with the former Telltale team. Hopefully the next one goes further.