The Wolf Among Us Episode 4, ‘In Sheep’s Clothing’ Review


Platforms: PC, PS3 (Reviewed Version), Xbox 360, iOS, OS X, PS Vita

Developer: Telltale Games

Publisher: Telltale Games

Release Dates: May 27th (PC/Mac, PS3), May 28th (Xbox 360), May 29th (iOS)

"Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.-Matthew 7:15"

[This review will try to remain spoiler-free of this game’s important content. However, it will make references to the scope of the season by referencing the framework behind Episode 1 (Faith), Episode 2 (Smoke & Mirrors) and Episode 3 (A Crooked Mile) to provide context.]

As we enter the final stretch, The Wolf Among Us Episode 4 puts the player, as Bigby Wolf, in an awkward predicament; his supposed “Mundy” life is becoming a fable of its own. Does servicing the story of an established comic book canon make for a compelling game? It’s all a matter of perspective.

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“In Sheep’s Clothing” picks up immediately after the conclusion of “A Crooked Mile,” with a plethora of new questions in desperate need of answering. Friendly faces from past episodes pop in yet again, as Bigby and Snow White follow up on constructive leads while unraveling the mystery of Fabletown’s disastrous murders. With the end of the season (and, quite possibly, the series) approaching, what you do or don’t say has fast-acting consequences on your investigation. Pick the wrong place to search or say the wrong thing to a villainous thug and you might end up with less information than you so direly need.

What makes this episode of The Wolf Among Us so different is the evidence of thematics. The Big Bad Wolf is the appointed sheriff of town, yet at every step along the way he is being undermined by external forces beyond his control. The struggle to find out who committed these murders isn’t so much about justice, but to establish his dominance over the realm. It’s not about what’s right for Bigby; it’s establishing an order. His command.

For very positive reasons, The Wolf Among Us doesn’t feel as much of a game as Telltale Games’ other offerings, specifically in the likes of The Walking Dead. Yes, there is enough exhilarating action to justify keeping the hands on the controller/keyboard at all times, but without a supreme dedication to the story, the neon-noir aesthetic falls flat. The world built by comic book creator Bill Willingham feels true within its video game adaptation, helping to drive the frantic sense of urgency that is developed only through careful canonical interpretation. Comic book readers don’t even know just exactly what’s going to happen or whom to trust, helping to provide a wondrous sense of intrigue for all players.

The Big Bad Wolf is the appointed sheriff of town, yet at every step along the way he is being undermined by external forces beyond his control. The struggle to find out who committed these murders isn’t so much about justice, but to establish his dominance over the realm. It’s not about what’s right for Bigby; it’s establishing an order. His command.

In this late stage of the game, the worry for getting dialogue choices “wrong” isn’t so much about letting people down, upsetting your potential love interest(s) or even being too frank in an interrogation; it’s all about the sense of discovery. While one can embrace a soft and docile approach to acting as sheriff, there is also a very real opportunity for one to uncover their guise and show themselves to be the Wolf in sheep’s clothing. Universal truths and eventualities are what stitch The Wolf Among Us together. When do you fight off your foe? How much do you want or need to hear first before moving on with your day? Is one man really the focal point of a spider’s web of cascading terror?

There are legitimate concerns about the unfolding of the game’s events, too. I greatly appreciate some semblance of an end-game being displayed, but the pacing for The Wolf Among Us Episode 4 puts the player in an odd spot when looking at the bigger picture. A lot of what needs to be accomplished…already has been. The way this season has ratcheted up, there may not be any exploration or investigating left.

That’s because a great deal of gameplay aspects occurred during Episode 4, which was greatly appreciated by your’s truly. Compared to the last episode, Bigby looked for clues, questioned suspects, dug up leads and even got his hands dirty a great deal more. An ongoing fear with Telltale Games is that they would fall back on its storytelling and go light on being an actual video game. Yet, The Wolf Among Us continues to balance these two aspects out amicably. Furthermore, the way the story handles acquiring money turns a graphic adventure game and adds a little bit of an RPG element twist into the mix, allowing players to influence the story based on providing or abstaining from helping others throughout the story.

Telltale has a big task ahead of them with the final chapter in this season/series. With a cast of wonderful, odd and exuberant characters at their fingertips, how they balance their crew will be a big challenge. The return of the likes of Colin and Mr. Toad provide a much improved dialogue report between them and Bigby, returning in like the charm that the series initially built itself around. However, with so many moving parts and so little time left, Telltale might actually have too much of a good thing going. It’s a testament to both the writing and the excellent voice actors; working in tandem, they represent the soul of the Fables video game entertainment. You can’t help but feel like you’re flipping through a comic book and jumping right in while playing this game.


The Wolf Among Us‘ penultimate act props up a variety of ways to approach the finale. An excellent story, varied gameplay aspects, remarkable character work and a thematic setting sets the stage for a deeply-involved conclusion that will hopefully avoid disappointment. A great deal of the investigating may be done, so it’s up to the game’s creators to balance the right amount of truth, doubt, gameplay and story ahead of Episode 5; “Cry Wolf.” Will that occur remains to be seen, but the run up has been a rewarding engagement worth experiencing on your own.

(A copy of this game was provided to GameSided for the purpose of this review.)