A triggering experience every gamer should indulge in…
What can I say about TLOU2 that hasn’t been said by the masses already? What can I say about the story that’s going to make you rage out and cry about it? What can I say about how an experience that took five(5)years in the making that the world over decided to review bomb before it even came out? Nothing. I’m not going to comment on anything that you may have seen or heard about this game that made you pass judgement so fast the Flash couldn’t even stop you even if he used the speedforce.
Instead what I’ll do – for those of you that are still willing to give this game a shot, is tell you about my experiences and why you should pick this up. The Last of Us Part II is obviously a continuation of the first game, The Last of Us. The sequel tends to do a little bit of time skipping here and there, but nothing that’s going to lose you. If you’re familiar with The Witcher on Netflix then you already know what I’m talking about. Whenever they do the time skip they’ll let you know when those events take place.
So let’s talk about my experiences so far and what I like about it, starting with the graphics. Even on a base PS4 it looks amazing, everything from what I can see based on the various environments ranging from the outdoors to inside of buildings that are run down and dirty almost look real. Since this is a post-apocalyptic game there are places that have been ransacked and destroyed, even the decay on dead bodies of both people and the infected have some in-depth detail to them that’ll make you want to stop and marvel at what’s in front of you and all around you.
Everything that happens is building the world around you, and sheds even more light on the situation you are in. I have to point out that Naughty Dog did a fantastic job with this – when you explore the locations you’re in and find notes from different people, they paint a picture of what happened either to them or to their community. These notes that are left behind by these mysterious individuals gives you an idea of the type of enemy you’re going to face – and I’m not talking about just the infected…I mean the people!
They’ve also incorporated different weather scenarios and different times of day in this – which makes sense since Ellie and her girlfriend Dina are pretty much trekking through Seattle. In the very beginning you’re in the middle of winter, traversing the mountainside, rivers and valleys both high and low. Skip a few days into Seattle and it’s nice and bright and sunny outside, not to mention the weather has also gotten warmer. The way Naughty Dog decided to implement these weather conditions in the game in my opinion is only to help paint the picture. In my experience, it hasn’t done anything that affected game play.
Movement in this game feels like it’s been improved upon from the first one. It doesn’t feel so stiff as to where you’d have trouble maneuvering, but with the added features of jumping and climbing, and even rope-swinging. Yea…you can swing from ropes in this game now. Honestly it’s a bit fun but it’s not something you come across all the time, and you can also swim! Naughty Dog released an extended game play trailer showing Ellie swimming in some body of water that connected to the inside of a building where she killed a girl that was playing the last PS VITA in the world. A tragic comedy if you ask me.
Speaking of killing – the combat is intense and insanely satisfying. You can feel the impact of the blows being dealt to your enemies as their faces cringe in pain(if they’re human) whenever you go toe-to-toe. Even when fighting the infected you can see blood spatters whenever you finish them off either on your face or on a nearby wall.
Keeping up traditions with the The Last of Us, the sequel follows in it’s tracks with a meaty stealth aspect even when combating enemies and infected alike. You can also crawl on the ground and hide in tall grass to stay out of sight – which can also add some creativity to your killing repertoire. *Depending on the difficulty you play on, you may not need to depend on stealth so much but only in certain parts of the game where it’s necessary.*
Since the game lets you play as two different characters – Ellie and Abby, sometimes you’ll have a partner traveling with you. The A.I. in this game isn’t as bad as the first where sometimes the AI will put you in a bad situation or just not help out at all. In TLOU2 the A.I. will assist you with killing enemies fairly quickly, and if you’re struggling with an enemy they’ll even jump in the fray which would enable you to double team your enemy. This gives off a “strength in numbers” type of vibe…even though it’s just the two of you.
To close this out, I have to recommend this game to anyone and everyone and I urge you to add this to your library. Add this to your memory bank of experiences – because that’s exactly what Naughty Dog is giving you here, an experience like no other. They didn’t hold back on the violence, the game play, or the overall message of survival in this game. If anything, they enhanced what the first one was and increased it ten-fold.
If you have this game then please let me know what your experiences are with this game. Why do you like it? Why not? I’m eager to know!