The sequel we all desperately wanted but never thought we would get has officially been announced during the PlayStation Experience 2016. It is now confirmed that The Last of Us 2 is currently in development by Naughty Dog.
The Last of Us was a PS3 (later remastered for the PS4) exclusive title developed by Naughty Dog. The simple fact that the exceptional Naughty Dog was behind the title was enough to make anyone excited. The game was released in 2013 to both universal critical and user acclaim, currently holding a score of 95/100 on review aggregate site Metacritic.
The Last of Us put players in the shoes of Joel, a tough-as-nails, no bulls@#$ taking man who after a series of unfortunate events, is tasked with accompanying Ellie through a post-apocalyptic United States. An outbreak of a mutant Cordyceps fungus has ravaged the United States of America, transforming its human hosts into cannibalistic monsters known as infected within the game. The title was known for its brutally realistic combat and setting, making every action feel ever so real when facing off against NPC human enemies. The stakes were raised even higher when Joel has to take on the various mutations of the infected, who required different tactics to take down due to their increased speed, sense of sound, and feral nature.
Whilst the gameplay was outstanding and engaging, the real draw of this title was the story that unfolded for the players. The way the relationship between Joel and Ellie realistically evolved from Joel simply trying to palm Ellie off to her end destination as just another job to complete, to Joel becoming emotionally invested in Ellie over the course of their adventure and struggle was so riveting, engaging, and relatable that it stuck with many who played the game for months after concluding the game’s final moments. I can personally attest to this, as the opening portion of the game was so emotional, that it was the first video game to strike a real chord with me during a certain event that occurs between Joel and a member of his family early on.
The sequel’s trailer opens up on a battle-scarred and tattooed Ellie, who is much older then she was in the previous title. Ellie is seen playing guitar and singing a song, whilst scenes of a figure walking by newly deceased bodies are interspersed between this. The figure is shown from behind to walk into the room where Ellie is playing the guitar, it is at this point that the man speaks and is instantly recognizable as Joel, despite never actually seeing him from the front. The sequel’s exact plot is currently unknown, but judging by the first piece of footage shown, many fans have already begun to formulate their own theories on what will unfold. The leading, and most divisive theory for obvious reasons, is that Joel is actually deceased and that Ellie is simply imagining his form as a coping mechanism for the events of her life in the bleak and desolate world. The theory states that Joel was murdered by an unknown person and the game follows Ellie on her personal mission for revenge to find and kill this individual.
I personally cannot wait for this sequel to finally come out. We still have a while to go unfortunately as there is no release date currently known, though I would expect the earliest we will see the game to be 2018. If you have not had the pleasure of playing the first title, then I would highly recommend you find yourself a copy, as it is simply one of the greatest games of the past decade.
What are your thoughts on the sequel’s first footage? Are you excited to finally get another story with Joel and Ellie? Did you play and enjoy the first game? Let us know in the comments section below or on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.