Telltale has taken on its biggest challenge yet, adapting the massively popular open-world sandbox game of Minecraft, and developing it into an immersive tale of an unlikely group of misfits who end up on a journey to save the world. The first episode of Minecraft: Story Mode lays the building blocks for yet another successful Telltale series with its strong voice acting, entertaining dialogue, and its dedication to the source material.
In Minecraft: Story Mode you take on the role of Jesse (a guy or girl, choice is up to you), as they are set to participate in the building competition for Endercon with their friends Oliva, Axel, and their pet pig Reuben. During the building competition things get out of control and you are separated from your group and join forces with a mysterious adventurer named Petra who gets in over her head in a shady business deal. The intensity of the episode ramps up from there as things quickly spiral into a journey to search for the warriors of the Order of the Stone and help save the world from an unstoppable being.
Throughout the first episode of Minecraft: Story Mode, you’ll hear many recognizable voices. The Order of the Stone features some of the best voice acting of any Telltale game to date, led by the voice of stand up comedian and film/television actor, Patton Oswalt as the male version of Jesse. Some of the other standouts of this stellar voice acting cast are Ashley Johnson, known for her roles as Ellie in The Last of Us and Gortys in Tales From The Borderlands, as the voice of Petra, Dave Fennoy, who voiced Lee in Telltale’s Walking Dead Season 1, as Gabriel, and Paul Reubens aka Pee-Wee Herman as the villain Ivor.
Everything you see in The Order of the Stone is possible to build in the actual game of Minecraft. Minecraft fans really have to be impressed with the level of detail and authenticity there is when comparing it to the source material. There is some crafting that is introduced in the first episode, although for the most part it is pretty linear, except for a specific trophy that can be obtained by crafting something other than what was asked. Hopefully the small crafting tasks were just a taste of what’s to come, and the options start to broaden.
One of the drawbacks of the first episode of Minecraft: Story Mode is how quickly it can be completed. The entire episode can easily be completed in a little over 2 hours, making it one of the shorter Telltale episodes. There are plenty of decisions to be made in The Order of the Stone, but not very many of them have a huge effect on how the episode plays out. There is an interesting choice to be made at the end of the episode, which could potentially make the next episode completely unique depending on which of the two choices you decide. Some of the combat where you face off against zombies and creepers felt somewhat lacking, as you simply stand and wait for the enemy to sluggishly walk within range and simply tap the trigger button to slash with your sword. Given the intensity of the action sequences of the last Telltale series, Tales from the Borderlands, it would have been nice for some of that action to carry over to Minecraft: Story Mode.
Although it was short and somewhat linear The Order of the Stone is an excellent introduction to the Minecraft: Story Mode adventure. With great voice acting and an intriguing plot line, the foundation has been laid for yet another excellent Telltale series.
Minecraft: Story Mode Episode 1: The Order of the Stone was reviewed on the Playstation 4. Review code was provided by Telltale Games.