The Walking Dead originally starred Clementine's brother

In a new feature detailing Clementine's inception, Telltale reveals that the game was always designed to center around her. And that you were originally going to play as her brother.

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Clementine, the vulnerable 8 year old girl you're tasked with protecting in Telltale's The Walking Dead, is one of the most iconic characters in games this year. In a new feature detailing the character's inception, Telltale reveals that the game was always designed to center around her. "Clementine was literally the first idea," writer Sean Vanaman revealed. "From the beginning, the designers knew they wanted a character that would act as a moral compass for the main character as he progressed through the game."

"My daughter was a major inspiration for me because she is always telling me my business," art director Derek Sakai told Game Informer in a character profile. The brutal honesty children can often impose was one of the main reasons Telltale knew The Walking Dead needed a protagonist like Clementine. "[My daughter] is only five, but if I step out of line she is always the first to call me on it," Sakai added.

The game was always meant to focus on Clementine. Before Lee was decided as Clementine's playable companion, Telltale experimented with having players assume the role of Clementine's brother. However, that decision eventually was axed because, according to Vanaman, "a pre-existing relationship would be too much to ask a player to take on."

It's clear that players feel a significant bond with Telltale's child heroine. If the critical accolades and awards weren't enough, the ongoing use of their marketing #forClementine hashtag should be proof enough on how invested gamers have become with the character.

From The Chatty
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    December 27, 2012 2:25 PM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, The Walking Dead originally starred Clementine's brother.

    In a new feature detailing Clementine's inception, Telltale reveals that the game was always designed to center around her. And that you were originally going to play as her brother.

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      December 27, 2012 2:36 PM

      Can this whole thing be bought outright now as a package on PC? I generally stay away from "episode" games, but now that they're all done, I think it'd be worth giving a shot.

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        December 27, 2012 2:36 PM

        Yea, it can be had on steam for like $12 right now.

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        December 27, 2012 2:58 PM

        Yes. And unlike other episodic games, all the episodes are contained in one application rather than four or five different executables.

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          December 27, 2012 3:02 PM

          This is a big improvement that I hadn't really fully appreciated until you said it. Definitely a big plus.

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          December 28, 2012 6:32 AM

          Finally! Okay, now that I know this, now I will buy it. Thank you

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      December 27, 2012 2:36 PM

      An interesting concept. No doubt it would have a different dynamic to how your character interacted with her, but I think Lee being an outsider really gave the player a chance to roleplay a little on how they might interact with a random stranger child given similar situation.

      At least that's how I approached it. If the character was her brother then you automatically assume the role as protector. Rather, Lee being a stranger gave me an opportunity to grow attached to Clem, and become that protector figure, rather than just assume it from the get go.

      A great choice by TT.

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        December 27, 2012 2:39 PM

        I agree. One of the things I really loved about this game was how Lee grew into becoming a father figure, something that would have been lost if the main character had already been family member.

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        December 27, 2012 2:42 PM

        Sean and Jake actually talked quite a bit about this on some Idle Thumbs podcasts iirc, especially about things like how being her brother created all this assumed knowledge that Lee should have but the player wouldn't and then it just being awkward or info-dumpy, etc.

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        December 27, 2012 2:44 PM

        I agree it's a really smart choice. People in the game mild spoiler look you over like you might be a pedo which is both realistic and terrifying. You really have to balance what you're choosing against the social circumstances, while you still of course naturally want to fill a parent role for this kid. It's crazy how well they figured that out.

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        December 27, 2012 3:25 PM

        Clem definitely provided the moral compass throughout the game. *Spoiler* I felt bad when I realized she was watching all along when I killed the first brother in Ep 2.

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          December 27, 2012 3:33 PM

          I never saw that moment coming! When it happened, I just drowned my head in my hands and yelled out "CRAAAAAAAAAAP!!!"

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      December 27, 2012 2:41 PM

      Great move. Can't wait for more. Amazing stuff.

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      December 27, 2012 2:51 PM

      Loved the game. Played it on its episodic timetable and the gaps between episodes did not dull the power of its execution. If anything, the breaks between episodes gave me more time for each major event to sink in and think about what would happen next.

      My biggest surprise -- Telltale managed to make a blockbuster hit in the adventure game genre in 2012. Pretty amazing accomplishment in and of itself. The fact that they totally broke the mold of the standard adventure game experience and made it as compelling as they did, even more impressive.

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        December 27, 2012 2:58 PM

        everything about this is so out of left field that I wasn't taking it seriously for a long time. I'm glad I actually played it. It's amazing. It's too bad that the kind of awards that should exist for stuff like this don't really yet. It's not really accurate to give it a GOTY against other stuff. It's more like interactive fiction of the year, a genre that has unfortunately struggled to have a modern existence. I hope Telltale finds a way to push this concept of the quality of the characters and story across lots more projects. They could literally be a fork in this industry in terms of making games like this versus making games that are shits and giggles focused.

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          December 27, 2012 3:00 PM

          Agreed. I hope this is just the very beginning of this style of interactive, mature fiction from them.

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      December 27, 2012 3:05 PM

      I need to play this whole damn thing over again

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        December 27, 2012 3:25 PM

        I honestly don't know if I could take a whole 2nd playthrough.

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          December 27, 2012 9:21 PM

          Same. I was drained afterwards.

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          December 27, 2012 9:29 PM

          I don't want to, because I would feel that the impact of my first playthrough (and the whole experience) would become diminished.

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        December 28, 2012 6:43 AM

        Seems pretty pointless to me, as the outcomes are essentially all the same. The illusion of choice would be completely ruined by a second playthrough.

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          December 28, 2012 7:54 AM

          Exactly how I feel, and I was totally burnt out after completing Episode 5.

          Playing it a second time would make it so obvious that none of the choices had any effect other than switching who dies where and of what.

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