Minecraft Story Mode: Episode 4 - A Block and a Hard Place

The only downside of playing Minecraft Story Mode: Episode 4 is wondering how Telltale plans to finish off this season with such a conclusive ending

By Grayshadow, Posted 27 Dec 2015

Minecraft Story Mode: Episode 4 - A Block and a Hard Place made the entire purchase worth it. Where as the last three episode had its mix of highs and lows episode 4 is nothing but excellent. Daring reveals, incredible action and fantastic writing had me at the edge of my seat from start to finish. 

At the end of episode 3 Jesse and his friends deployed the Formidi-Bomb to destroy the Wither Storm. After a brief moment of relief the dangerous creature returned, now split into three Wither Storms. Now faced with a new threat the group retreats, with a now amnesia stricken Gabriel, to construct a new plan to end the Wither Storms once and for all.

Expect a lot of reveals this episode, some of them assumed from past events and others shocking. You’ll learn what happened to The Order of the Stone, maintain a shattered group, and make a unsettling sacrifice. What tied the entire episode together was the final choice, which could have long-lasting implications in the next episode.

Unlike the past episodes here I felt more like a leader her, and a hero. Real dangers are present and a sense of camaraderie is present among Jesse and his friends, many looking to him for support. In one instance Olivia looses all faith in herself, forcing Jesse to reinvigorate her lost morale by highlighting all the accomplishments she made throughout the journey. Many of these conversations happen throughout the episode, many forcing Jesse to be the voice of reason.

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Gameplay remains the same as players choose from up to four options in quick timed events. What episode 4 does different from other episodes is showcase Jesse’s new found confidence. The choices Jesse makes are more profound here, voicing his new found confidence as the group’s leader.

Past issues still plague this episode. During certain segments I was introduced to some spectacular locations, and limited to a small space to look around. Same goes for the logic. In one instance Jesse and his friends build a bridge to escape the Wither Storm from the surrounding blocks in a matter of seconds, however when presented with a similar issue to cross a chasm no one decides to apply the same solution to the problem at hand. Shockingly, despite playing on the Xbox One, I experience significant frame-rate issues during the final portion of the game. Other minor glitches such as characters popping in and out was forgiving but on a next-generation system frame-rate shouldn't be an issue for a game of this size.

As the penultimate episode for Minecraft Story Mode, Episode 4 - A Block and a Hard Place leaves us with many questions of what the future holds for Jesse and his friends. Seeing Jesse’s evolution from a gawky builder into a leader of heroes was one worth taking, and episode 4 has this nobody defy odds and defeat a legendary beast. The only downside is wondering how Telltale plans to finish off this season with such a conclusive ending.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, Wii U, Xbox 360, PS3, PC
Publisher(s): Microsoft
Developer(s): Telltale Games
Genres: Action-Adventure
Themes: Narrative
Release Date: 2015-12-22

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