Review / Thoughts:
The Last of Us: PART 2 ( PS4 )
( Beautiful BUT Messy )
( Contains Spoilers and Non-Spoiler )
* This time, I will mark each pros and cons on whether they are spoilers in it or not so if you have not played the game yet, please do ignore the spoilers pros and cons section *
Developer: Naughty Dog
Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Released: June 19th, 2020
Time Played: 25 Hours
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The Last of Us Part II is a 2020 action-adventure game developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment for the PlayStation 4. Set five years after The Last of Us (2013), players control 19-year-old Ellie who sets out for revenge and becomes involved in a conflict between a militia and a cult in the post-apocalyptic United States. The game contains survival horror elements and is played from the third-person perspective. Players can use firearms, improvised weapons, and stealth to defend against enemies and cannibalistic creatures infected by a mutated strain of the Cordyceps fungus.
The Last of Us 1 is one of my favorite games there is. I JUST LOVED THE CONNECTION BETWEEN ELLIE & JOEL. I loved the environment, soundtrack, and everything it had to offer. So When for the first time Naughty Dog announced that they are making The Last of Us: PART 2. I was HYPED and I believe everyone was super looking forward to it UNTIL the leak happened in 2020 which directly after that divided the community into 2 groups. Some say they will not buy it nor play it and like it while others are still looking forward to seeing how this game is gonna top the first one. Well! I was sadly one of the victims who got spoiled early before the game came and YES! I was pissed at that news BUT I kept myself open-minded and still gave this game a shot to see if maybe why they are wrong and are hating for no reason.
Well, here we are! I have finished this game AND to be completely honest… I do not hate this game like some of the people are NOR i am in love with this game that much to give it a 10/10 sadly. I am just disappointed with how Naughty Dog went in a completely different direction. Without further due, here is my review on “ The Last of Us: Part 2 “
* Reminder that skip the point which contains “ Spoilers “ if you have not played the game yet and want to experience the game for yourself *
+ Graphics / Attention to details:
( Non-Spoilers )
I think the graphics and the attention Naughty Dog have put on here does not need any introduction. This game is simply the best looking game of this current-generation, I am even surprised to see how this game runs on the launch PS4 and how it did not blow up.
The Details are simply mind-blowing. From grass growing inside buildings, outside buildings, on roads, on cars. From the small details of water drops, snow, shoot the snow, it falls, when it rains, tall grass moves when you are in it. Words can’t simply describe how amazing and incredible the number of details the Naughty Dog has put into this game and it is worth playing it yourself to see how hard work they put to make it look this amazing. This makes me excited to see how the developers will make the game look even more beautiful next-generation.
( Non-Spoiler )
Gameplay in TLOU 2 might feel the same as it was in TLOU 1 but this time there are small improvements and attention to details to it.
The gameplay is fun, the way the main character moves almost feels like real, the way they run, dodge, jump all feels realistic. The way the main character reacts when hit by the bullet is good ( especially with an arrow as you manually need to take it out ). There is new stuff to the gameplay this time around as well, like throwing a rope to get over an obstacle. You can prone now, you now have a dedicated JUMP button. In tl;dr again the game should be played to have the feeling of how realistic this game is ( in graphics and in gameplay )
+ Animations / Voice-acting / Motion Capture:
( Non-Spoiler )
Animations in TLOU 2 are once again top-notch here. The expression that each character has impacted you on how you feel about them. The Lip-syncing in TLOU2 just spoiled all of the games for me on how amazing it was, You can see them smiling, sadness, anger, and all the emotions right on their faces as they speak. Combine that with an outstanding voice-acting from all of them makes you have the connection between those characters. Makes you feel sad when something bad happens to them and makes you happy when something good happens.
This type of animation combined with voice-acting connects you with the world and the game itself which a lot of games I hope does follow these steps.
+ Ellie with Joel and Dina:
( Contains HEAVY Spoilers )
TLOU 2 does one thing great and that is to make you have the same feeling as you had in TLOU 1 when you are near Joel or the new character Dina. I think by trailers and last game DLC you know that Ellie is gay. She has a love connection between Dina and that connection was done great in this game. This game does a good job actually on Positive the LGBT. I absolutely do not mind that and that was really cool to see our main character Ellie to have love to Dina
What about Joel you ask? Well, this game makes you feel sad and want to cry when you see Ellie and Joel together just like they had before ( I am talking about TLOU 1 ) and cause Joel dies at the beginning and you knowing we will never see him again in the 3rd one or in the rest of this game. It still has some of those amazing connection moments that we had just like in TLOU 1. And that, I loved about this game but that love has issues as well which I will talk in cons section 👍
+ * First half of the game *:
( Non-Spoilers )
Without spoiling anything I will simply say that the first part of the story in TLOU 2 is great and I loved it. I loved the semi-open world area we explore. I loved the connection the first half build between Ellie and someone else. Yeah! The start might have been rough BUT how the story setups from there are good, I would have rated the game an 8/10 just for the first part of the game BUT than after like 10 hours and when we reach the 2nd part… Yeah! I will talk about it below
+ New Enemies / AI:
( Non-Spoilers )
Yes! There are new types of enemies in The Last of Us: PART 2; both in human types as well as in infected.
New enemies in humans are of a new faction called “ Scars “ a nickname given to extremist religious faction The Seraphites. This pack of foes often come equipped with silent weapons, like bows and arrows, and can take stealthy approaches to attack you, like hiding in the vegetation. When hit with an arrow, it can get stuck in Ellie’s skin and damage her over time if the player doesn’t remove it quickly. I loved the way they use the “ whistle signals “ to communicate with each other to hunt you down. SUCH AN AWESOME WAY TO DO IT. Another faction you fight against is the Washington Liberation Front, a militia group that takes Seattle back from the government. This faction wields guns and tools similar to Ellie, and are more direct in combat.
New enemies in infected are 1: “Shamblers” and they cause most serious damage ( especially in survival difficulty ), they spew an acid gas from their spores that can burn the skins. Other is 2: “ Stalkers “ and they are Stage 2 of the Cordyceps infection, Stalkers are a weird cross between Runners and Clickers. They still have some vision and are far more cautious than any other infected, working to attack you from multiple angles and hiding if you actively search for them. AND there is also a 3rd one which I will not talk about cause it appears once and is “something” else.
With that all, the AI this time around has been improved very much than the first game. The AI is so smart that they will try to flank you, ambush you, and communicate together to hunt you down. Naughty Dog does that system really well this time.
+ Those two “beautiful” scene:
( Contains Spoilers )
There are two specific scenes that I wanted to talk about which made me cry and have the feeling of sadness that this might be the last time we see Ellie and Joel Together cause of you know and they are the flashback Dinosaurs museum as well as Ellie been what she always wanted to be an astronaut.
The part reminded me of a lot of some of the amazing scenes they both had in TLOU 1 as well as its DLC. Those scenes show us ( the player ) of the love between those both incredible characters and how we will be missing Joel. I always felt sad and almost cried during the scene where Joel gives Ellie a cassette of Apollo 11 where they lift off to go to space and the moon. MAN! Those scenes and that part of the game was great and I honestly wish the whole game was like that 😥
+ Cool moments that surprised me:
( Contains 1 small spoiler which ain’t huge )
There is some scene in the game where a completely unexpected happens which I loved that addiction to the game. Without spoiling all of them I will just name one. At one point you roam in a house where there is a crafting bench in which you can upgrade your weapons. If you use that you get a completely unexpected attack from someone from behind which actually scares you but also was surprised to see that. There is also another one where the game makes you feel like you have died and failed that part but then someone comes to the rescue and saves you.
I hope many other games also have this kind of surprises and attention to details cause those were some awesome part of the game
( Non-Spoiler )
Not everyone can play games sadly, some might be colorblind to see a specific color or some might not even hear anything and they are still gamers in their heart so that's why Sony and Naughty Dog have added one of the best accessibility options in any game I have seen and I have to applause them for doing it 👏
Many Accessibility includes tweaks on hearing, vision or motor, Alternative Controls which suit you well, Input Remap, NAVIGATION AND TRAVERSAL, and much much more.
All of the ACCESSIBILITY OPTIONS can be found via the link below:
( HEAVY HEAVY “Spoilers” Warning )
So here we go, let’s us talk about the story of the TLOU 2 and how badly and not-well executed it was with many plot-holes in it.
1: “The Death”:
The Death of the main-character we had in the first one. YES! I am talking about Joel cause he dies in TLOU 2. Now don’t get me wrong, I saw it coming cause i knew that one way or another we will see Joel die cause he did what he had to be done and Ellie was our new hero of this story but the way the Naughty Dog did it was just POORLY. Let me explain to you why?
First of all, I feel like Joel should have died in the 3rd game or something cause that died happened so suddenly that YES! I was sad about it but it did not shock me at all. Another thingy is of this plothole I think of which Naughty Dog either forgot about or just said… F IT, let’s do it anyway. In TLOU 1, Joel was a guy that never trusted ANYONE since his daughter died in the opening of that game. He never trusted Tess, He never trusted any military group, he did not trust Marlene and you can clearly see he did not even trust Ellie at the beginning of the game. He even knew he did a bad choice when he chose the other way in that car part of the game. He had trust issues and then SUDDENLY! He goes to the bad guy’s place in TLOU 2, casually greeds Abby and just introduces himself and Tommy in the bad guys base. WHERE THE TRUST ISSUE WENT TO HUH? From where he just trusts strangers in the cruel world where people hunt for food, water to drink??? That IMO was one BIG plothole and that stupidity made Joel killed.
I feel like Naughty Dog could have made he died much much better and he deserves a better ending if they either developed that died scene and maybe put it halfway through the game OR killed him off in TLOU 3 as TLOU 2 would have to focus even more on Joel and Ellie development and how Ellie hates Joel cause of the ending of TLOU 1
2: “ The New Character / 2nd Part “:
So with Joel Died, The story of Revenge sets up for Ellie as she sets off to find who did it and just kills THEM. Revenge stories are not bad, I mean RDR 2 did it really really well. The recent game I played; Desperados 3 ( Review of it also coming soon ) also did a revenge story well BUT TLOU 2 could have been the same IF the ending was good which sadly was not.
We start the first part of the game as Ellie who sets off for revenge with Dina who is a new character and Ellie loves here. The whole first part of the story was GREAT like I said. An 8/10 for the first part. BUT when we switch to ABBY for the second part of the game. I JUST HATED IT. I hated the second part of the game cause we play the character who killed Joel, I hated it cause of them resetting all the skills I worked hard for the first part and they want me to do it again, I hated it cause Naughty Dogs try to make you feel for the killer and their group like we had for Joel and Ellie which honestly I DON’T CARE. What is the point of making this whole connection of us caring for Joel and Ellie if they just force us to now care about someone who KILLED JOEL?
I am sorry but it did not work out. I did not care at all about Abby, I did not care about there group and I just speedrun that second part of the game cause I did not care. They make us feel for them cause the second part we can interact with dogs, play with them, we can interact with horses BUT we all kill them in the first part of the game as Ellie ( another point I will talk about in a bit ). I think it would have been somewhat better if we played as Abby from the start of the game, played her for the first part which explained why she hates Joel and that that would have lead to Joel died and we start playing as Ellie for the second part… That would have made the story a bit better and I would have cared about Abby than.
3: “ Ellie is BAD NOW? ”:
Yeah! You read that right, Naughty Dogs went a different way this time and made Ellie look like a bad guy now and Abby as good. NO! I am sorry but NO, I do not care about Abby and especially after she kills Joel.
I mean do not get me wrong. Everyone in this game is bad. Joel was the bad cause of what he did at the end of the first game, Ellie is bad cause she just goes on the rampage of killing everyone no matter who it is just to get to, Abby is bad cause of you know. TLDR; EVERYONE IS BAD which is fine but what’s the point of making the main characters bad and out of nowhere, we should now care about a new character in this game. Why you ( Naughty Dogs ) make us feel and care about Joel and Ellie in the first game cause here you just turn completely around and made them bad. I simply did not like it and you would understand why I am talking about this when you play the game yourself.
4: About “ THAT “ Scene:
So let me talk about the Abby Sex scene and how for me it felt disgusting, unnecessary and Sony breaking their own promise of what they said before.
It was disgusting Like I said before I have NO HATE of Abby big arms or her been muscular but when that “scene” happened, I was feeling weird cause this is the last of us… Yeah! The last of us and the first one never had sort of this feeling like I had it here. Secondly, I feel like it was unnecessary cause we never get to know him much more after it and Abby leaves him. You might say that this is for character development but i feel like even if it was for that, it could have been done in a completely different way and that would have been better than having… well, this. And other thing is that I clearly remember Sony saying that they are banning “ Sexual content “ from their games but apparently let this happened cause… IT IS ART!
No, Seriously; they did say that, check the link below to see for yourself:
5: “ The Ending “:
Now let’s talk about the ending and how I personally did not like it. So as of now, you know Joel died and Ellie is after the killer, Yeah! It is basically a revenge story and when it is about revenge than it has to end by either killing the bad guy or teaching a lesson of how revenge is bad. This game’s aim is to show you that REVENGE IS BAD but throughout the game, it feels like it is about doing revenge and when that ending happened. I was just sad about how bad it was.
RDR 2 did a better revenge story than TLOU 2, there our hero dies when his mission is accomplished. Here Ellie’s aim is just to get Abby but she finds that Abby is stronger than her but still does not let it go. Ending of TLOU 2 could have been better IF 1: The ending had a choice of to either let you kill Abby or let her go, by this at least if many people chose to let Abby go than Neil Druckmann telling a story that he wanted would have been a success and the question of “ Did our story hit the players hard “ would have been answered OR 2: You could have ended the game at the farm place. Ellie has let go of Joel died and she is living happily with Dina ( except for Ellie having to live with those PTSD )… I would have been happy with that ending and that could have left window open for Part 3 BUT NOPE! They still wanted to show that revenge is bad and Ellie’s whole journey throughout this game was just for NOTHING.
I am sorry to say but I did not like that ending, could have been better in many ways, and if you liked it than again! More power to you.
6: “The Pacing / Execution / Timeline ”:
I am gonna keep this short and simple… The way the plotline was executed and how events happened was confusing and not-so-greatly-done.
Too many flashbacks in completely different places which confused me the main story of the game thinking “ Did that happened before this or after this or we are in that same timeline BUT in different view? “. Jumping back and forth between characters and events was just AH! Making my head hurt. Could have been done better.
And that’s about it, The Last of Us: Part 2 BIGGEST ISSUE is with its story and how it was told/executed. Could have been a better game if this was all done right but sadly it did not and this caused me to not like this game a lot. TLDR; Story is a 5/10 for me while the Pacing of the game is a 2/10
– Sound issues:
( Non-Spoiler )
I had some sound issues with this game I don't know if it was only me or others had it as well. The issues I had with sound were that the characters’ voice/footprints were lower than the sound of enemies and shooting. I tried changing many setting and still had not fix for it
So yeah! I had issues with sound mixing in The Last of Us: Part 2
6/10 ( Above Average )
( Wait for Sale )
The Last of Us: Part 2 is sadly a HUGE HUGE disappointment for me and it just breaks my heart seeing that this is what Neil Druckmann and Naughty Dogs decide to go with this franchise and It sadly is not the real and true Sequal we all deserve for The Last of Us 1 cause that game… That game is and will always be a masterpiece.
Don't get me wrong, The Last of Us: Part 2 in the technical aspect is just amazing. Graphics are beautiful to look at, Gameplay is fun with combat been intense especially on the hardest difficult cause of the rare amount of ammo you get on that difficulty, Ellie is still a great character in this one with everyone in it having an outstanding animations / Voice-acting BUT it fails deeply on the messing / not-so-great story with plotholes and execution been weak and for me personally this revenge story should have been as Part 3 and Part 2 to had more focused on the story of Last of us 1 BUT at the end story was not amazing and am disappointed on where Neil Druckmann and Naughty Dogs went with this one.
Definitely a game that is worth playing just only for Graphics and Gameplay so it is a " Wait for Sale " for me. It is available on Playstation Store for $59.99.
Thanks for reading my review on this game, YES this game is very polarizing and some might agree with me while some will not and say they LOVE it and that is absolutely fine. All different opinions are welcomed and more power to you if you liked it but sadly it was not for me. See you all on Desperados 3 / Final Fantasy 7: Remake AND Ghost of Tsushima review
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