The Last of Us Part II: Game Review - SPOILERS!
My Thoughts on the Second Installment of the Last of Us Game Series
The Last of Us first came out in 2013 and quickly became a popular franchise with comics, DLCs, and now even an ongoing TV show! In fact, it was because the show was airing that I decided to play the Last of Us Part II. Why didn't I start with the first one? That's easy. Because I never played the second one, and wanted to see how it was compared to the original. Once the show's episodes have all aired this season and I finish watching them, I will then go back and play the first one. Also, this review is being written after I had played the story mode once, so there may be some details I've missed. I will be playing another playthrough Anyways, let's get into what I thought about the game. Oh, and in case you didn't see it in the title, there will be spoilers so if you haven't played the game, then I recommend you play the game and come back to this article later!
My Thoughts On: The Plot
Okay, so The Plot I actually quite enjoyed although it is quite depressing. So as we know, instead of playing as Joel, the protagonist of the first installment of TLOU, we play as Ellie Williams. Ellie is quite possibly the only person in TLOU universe that is immune to the Cordyceps Fungus Infection. At the end of the first game, Ellie was saved by Joel from being experimented on by a group of doctors who believed that she could be the cure to this infection. Joel, realizing that the surgery to find a cure would kill Ellie, decides to intervene and prevent that from happening. Now in the second installment, the repercussions of that decision come back to haunt Joel and Ellie. Well...Joel moreso than Ellie.
Joel and Ellie are residing in the township of Jackson along with Joel's brother, Tommy, and other friends. Tommy and Joel go out on patrol and we learn that they never showed up at the rendezvous point. Ellie goes to investigate and finds out that a group of people from shacked up in a nearby ski lodge have knocked out Tommy and are torturing Joel for what he did at the end of the first game! Ellie gets there too but is too late as she is subdued and forced to watch Joel die. The group, members of the Washington Liberation Front, from Seattle leave Ellie and Tommy alive and flee from the scene.
After processing their grief, Tommy leaves for Seattle on his quest for revenge. Ellie follows suit too, with her (at this point, kinda-sorta-not-really) girlfriend, Dina.
Meanwhile, you also play as Abby, the person responsible for killing Joel who also goes on her own quest, where she helps these two teenage siblings escape their crazy death cult. Abby and Ellie each experience their own plot lines that cross paths at various points in the story.
I liked the idea that we get to play as someone who lost a person they loved, and the one who took that person away to show the cyclical nature of revenge. Joel killed Abby's Dad, Abby and her friends kill Joel, Ellie kills Abby's friends, Abby kills Ellie's friends, and the cycle repeats until someone breaks that cycle.
My Thoughts On: Abby
Okay, so I know a lot of people really don't like Abby because of what she did to Joel. I also know that people really did not like having to play as Abby because of what she did to Joel, and believe me when I tell you. I really, really, really wanted to hate her too, but as I continued to play as her and uncovered more of her backstory, Abby only really ever grew on me as a character. Not that I'm justifying her actions, but Abby's motives for seeking revenge, as much as I dislike their outcome (Joel dying horribly), are understandable.
From what I could gather, Abby was the one that wanted revenge on Joel the most. This makes sense because the dude did literally kill her dad, but her motives and desire to get to Joel were selfish at first and careless. However, as the story progressed she chooses to help Yara and Lev who affect her positively. She becomes more selfless and is willing to leave behind her crazy paramilitary organization to keep Yara and Lev safe. Abby is even willing to forego taking out Ellie when Lev tells her not to, and even leaves Dina alone when she finds out that she's pregnant. This growth is in complete opposition to Ellie's.
My Thoughts On: Ellie
Like I said earlier, Ellie's character arc is the complete opposite of Abby's. While it seems to me that Abby's motives start off selfish and end off selfless, Ellie's start off selfless and end off selfish. Abby starts her story with the selfish desire to kill Joel, while her friends do too, she wants it the most (and for her personal, but understandable, reasons). Ellie starts her quest for revenge for her own personal reasons, but also to go help Tommy (Joel's little brother). However, it becomes clear that her intentions are more and more self-serving. At one point, Ellie chooses to pursue Abby at the possible expense of Tommy's safety (when Ellie and Jesse split up on whether or not to go help Tommy). This leads to Jesse dying, Tommy being injured permanently, and Dina nearly dying. On top of this, months later, Ellie chooses to leave Dina and her baby in pursuit of Abby. She loses her relationship and almost died finding Abby in Santa Barbara only for her to let Abby live. Through that last action, she chooses to break what I think the writers of the game are showing as the cyclical nature of revenge.
My Thought On: The Gameplay
Alright so overall, I really liked the gameplay. The traversal was fine, there honestly wasn't much change in quality in comparison to the first game if my memory serves correctly. There were times were I felt it took a long time to get from point A to point B because characters walk slowly but I also get the TLOU games try to go for realism and people in real life don't sprint consistently and walk that fast. However, I can also admit that this might not be an issue with the game. I am man enough to admit that even though I like video games, sometimes I just suck at them.
Do you know what was awesome about the gameplay? The combat. The combat to me was super fun and very satisfying. First, when it came to human encounters, the fights were challenging, and when you did take out these enemies it felt very satisfying. This is especially true when you know who you're fighting and what their history is, whether it be the WLF or the Scars. And when it came to the infected encounters? Oh boy, those were straight-up stressful but got my heart racing! Runners are very easy to deal with, but clickers? Bloaters? Shamblers? That RAT KING?! Oh boy. Those are tough to deal with.
On a separate note, the rat king was a really cool concept. I like the idea that a bunch of infected in a closed space will just merge into a horrifying monstrosity. Imagine what other infected horrors might exist in the universe?
Although the selection of weapons and equipment to take down humans and infected are relatively limited, there is still a lot of creative ways that you can deal with enemies, which made the combat fun.
All in all I'd give the game an 8/10.
This is my first game review, so hopefully as time goes on they'll start to get better!
About the Creator
Just a guy
I like to read comic books, watch tv shows, and write about them. Ill also write about other things too!
There are no comments for this story
Be the first to respond and start the conversation.