The Last of Us Part II - Is It Worth It?

The Last of Us 2, Ellie, Joel, TLOU2, NaughtyDog
You will play most of the game as a Bloodthirsty Ellie


Is the Last of Us Part II really Worth all of Your Time and Money?

The Last of Us Part II has been out for over a week now and even before it reached the public, it was and is one of the most controversial games to be released in 2020. Fans have split themselves up, some giving the game a chance, some completely avoiding it. However,  a lot of people see the good and the bad with Naughty Dog’s long-anticipated title, and I am one of them. This review is about The Last of Us Part II and giving the game what it deserves is exactly what I will be doing here.

About The Last of Us Part II

The Last of Us Part II is an action-adventure game produced by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment. It has been one of the most anticipated games since its last success, The Last of Us from 2013. It finally arrived as a Playstation 4 title on June 19th of 2020. This action-packed survival game is nothing to take lightly as it was not made to walk into with a smile. Players can expect gruesome encounters, heart-wrenching events, tense situations, inhumane decisions, and best of all, infected of all kinds.

Many conversations happened before the game was released. Leaks were spilled upon the public weeks before the game had a chance to truly shine. These leaks helped many people come to a decision on whether or not to buy the game. It was a tough time for The Last of Us fans. Spoilers rained down in comments, were spammed in chats, and spread like wildfire. It was truly something else, seeing a game judged so harshly by the public before anyone truly played it. This happens to a lot of games upon release, The Last of Us Part II, being amongst the popular ones. Despite the comments, good or bad, the game has risen and has sold 4 million copies on opening weekend becoming PlayStation’s fastest-selling game ahead of Spider-Man.

The Last of Us Part II Story

“If I ever were to lose you, I’d surely lose myself…”

When it comes to games like this, the story is the most important part of it. I, personally, had conflicts with a lot of the events that happened throughout the story. However, I will not say that it did not leave a mark on my heart. If you can get through The Last of Us Part II without shedding a single tear, you are a trooper. I feel like fans of the first game will not be too happy when it comes to a lot of things in the game, but Naughty Dog is taking us on a roller-coaster of events.

The story is in the form of ‘A to Z’, meaning you get the mission and you are going for it right off the bat. It is not too linear when it comes to gameplay, allowing you to roam and wander. You will not feel rushed when completing a mission. Naughty Dog let down a lot of their fans with the story, but playing the full game to uncover those untold secrets is definitely worth it in my opinion. Knowing that I have completed the story helped fill that void the game made me experience in the first place.

 

I did not agree with some of the things that took place in the story, and I am still in the same mindset as I was when I first experienced it. Naughty Dog could have done a ton better with how they handled some of the situations and that is a fact. But, I’m going to be very blunt, the story makes you think. Some of Ellie’s actions, I did not agree with as I kept playing. And if we look at the whole picture, there were ethics that had to be thought on when pondering on some of the character’s past and recent decisions. It all adds up in the end, but goodness, it is a tough road to go down and a hard pill to swallow.

 

That is what makes the game a masterpiece to me. It allowed me to feel as if I were watching a movie, or TV series or reading an emotional book. The game is heart-wrenching and will keep you on your toes thinking about in-game decisions that you will become reluctant to accept. It does a great job forcing you into the character’s reality. However, due to Naughty Dog making some decisions for the sake of a well-carried out plot, the story part was a huge downfall for me.

The Last of Us Part II Gameplay

Using the bow and arrow will get you some of the best and most satisfying kills

The Last of Us Part II Gameplay - PlayStation Access​

The Last of Us Part II has some of the most phenomenal gameplay I have ever seen. It is truly a window of what next-generation gameplay should look like. Even though it was released on the PS4, I believe it will have some of the best gameplay there is. Fighting is ever-so satisfying. You will play most of the game as a bloodthirsty Ellie. The young and stubborn girl we all came to love in the first game has turned to a darker state of mind in the hours of The Last of Part II. The game also has different characters you play to get an all-around point of view of certain events.

It becomes a bit uncomfortable when playing as some characters, but Naughty Dog stays consistent with ripping the player out of their comfort zones. Changing up the formula is what this game is all about and it really proves that with some of the gameplay. It was not an easy playthrough, but to get the full experience, I understand why they made me play as other characters.

The Last of Us Part II Combat

Last of Us Part II Combat - VoyagersRevenge​

When it comes to combat, The Last of Part II really takes the cake. Slicing, bashing, shivving, and cutting the throats of enemies still feels like the first game, just highly expanded upon. Despite the game being brand new, not much has changed from the first game regarding combat, however, it does feel smoother and more connected as it should be.

Crafting and upgrading weapons came from the first game but it is way more of a treat. And the cinematics and small details that went into crafting and upgrading weapons make the game all more atmospheric. Players will come across many enemies as they advance in the game. Enemies range from infected, which have had an upgrade in their AI, to humans who do not take kindly to trespassers. The game allows players to have many strategies when it comes to combat. Tense stealth battles are my favorite way to confront any enemy. But it never gets old just to run in and straight hack the guts out of an enemy and follow up with gunshots to the head for a quick kill.

There are open areas that invite players to use a long-ranged quiet weapon, like a scoped rifle, or bow and arrow. There are stealth rooms, littered with structures to hide behind and sneak up on an enemy to get a quiet, yet satisfying kill. Abandoned areas due to the outbreak allow for the luscious green grass to grow tall and hide in when in combat. Molotovs and spike bombs are also still a thing in this game and prove useful when fighting off huge hordes of infected and sparse crowds of humans. From crouching to going totally prone, distracting enemies with a brick, or burning them with molotovs, players will have many opportunities and varieties when it comes to getting rid of their opponents. 

The Last of Us Part II Mission System

The mission system in the game is very straight forward. You get your assignment, whether it be killing someone or collecting supplies, the journey to get there is where the fun begins. Missions go along with the storyline. There are not any side missions to complete so you will spend your time completing missions only to advance the storyline. Good thing the game is very long! When completing a mission, cutscenes take over the game, short or long, they have proven to give the most flavor to this game.

Most missions within the game require intense battles with enemies. Some of those enemies are humans from organized groups, some are infected that you will continuously run into. Players will be able to roam the path along the mission to collect supplies and search rooms for notes. One thing about the game and its mission system is that it does not rush you towards point A to point B. It allows you to explore and take in the scenery which I found relaxing. This allows you to wander off the path for a bit before getting into combat or entering another cutscene. However, if you do want to bullet-train through the game and advance quickly through the story, then there is nothing stopping you!

The Last of Us Part II Graphics

The Last of Us Part II has some of the best graphics I have ever seen in video games ​

No game comes close when it comes to the graphics of The Last of Us Part II. Naughty Dog has really outdone themselves. The stunning graphics definitely push the quality of video games even further. Whether you think the story is good or not, one thing to not question is the way the game looks. Some still shots can be mistaken as real life. Small attention to detail also adds to the flavor of the game’s amazing scenery. From knocking huge chunks of snow off of a tree to having bloody footprints after a brutal battle, there is almost nothing Naughty Dog forgot when making the game pretty.

The character’s facial expressions are also very amazing and on point. If you do not pay attention, you will not see it, but it is definitely there. The animators put a lot of thought into every aspect of how the game looks. Lighting effects are mind-blowing and every area in the game ties into a post-apocalyptic atmosphere. Imagine not being able to tell when you are transitioning into a cutscene versus playing for real. The transitions are so smooth and very satisfying. Coming from a person who studied a bit of animation, I was in awe with how pretty the game was and how consistent it stayed all the way through.

The Last of Us Part II Developer

Naughty Dog, the creators of The Last of Us franchise and also the company that brought us the award-winning Uncharted franchise, has brought yet another title that is changing the way the public look at video games. The Last of Us Part II has been one of the most highly anticipated games, originally set to release February 21st, 2020. It was delayed to May 29th due to reducing the stress of the development team and knowing they would release the game with satisfaction.

Fans were supportive of the delay because most of them wanted the best version of something they had been waiting for since 2013. However, the game was delayed again from May 29th to June 19th due to COVID-19. Fans, once again understood, for the most part. Other big games were being delayed at the time including the Final Fantasy VII remake and Cyberpunk 2077.

During the few weeks before the game’s launch, leaks were released and fans raged. Despite the rage, The Last of Us II became PlayStation’s fastest-selling game. Neil Druckmann, the game’s developer, has been praised and scorned for what the game has been over the last few days. Most companies gave the game a perfect score on the opening weekend which fanned the flames of controversy. And as more of the public started playing the game, reviews became very mixed. Some call it a masterpiece, some hate it. 

The Last of Us Part II Price

There are many different versions of The Last of Us Part II that you can buy. The Standard Edition is $59.99, the regular price for most new games. There is the Special Edition that is $79.99, Collector's  Edition which is $169.99,  and the Ellie Edition which is $229.99. Of course, these versions of the game come with extra items such as the 12” Ellie statue that comes with the Ellie and Collector’s Edition. It depends on if you want to invest your money to get the extra novelties. The extra editions also come with 6 PSN avatars, original artwork, soundtracks, stickers, and pins.

The Last of Us Part II will be exclusive to PlayStation and no other console. PlayStation  CEO, Jim Ryan, has confirmed that The Last of Us II will run on the PS5 without a problem. So if you are worried about not having the game to play on your new PS5, worry not, it will be there.

FINAL VERDICT

My final opinion of The Last of Us Part II is that it is a very good game. It is a wonderful game and the exact kind of game I would expect from Naughty Dog. It had all the aspects of a post-apocalyptic world from the infected to the many clans that rose from the outbreak. I would only expect the world to become like The Last of Us if an outbreak would happen. Storywise, I loved the story, but there are multiple ideas I did not agree with that Naughty Dog tried to make okay. I was infuriated with the game for a very long time and still hurt by a lot of what happened. 

Overall, I give the game a 7/10. It would have been a perfect score if the story added up a bit more. I would say the game is definitely worth it, coming from someone who loved the first game and has played the second. It is only worth it if you can accept some things and want to know the answers to a lot of questions that arose in the first part. So if you are curious, then I believe you could be interested in this game.

Some of the story felt forced for a plot, some of it felt like Naughty Dog was trying to make us feel something a lot of players would never feel. That is why I had a problem with the story. However, I cannot say I did not enjoy and love the game. There are so many good things that happened that outshine the bad and I am glad I had the opportunity to play it to see what was next for our beloved characters.

Pros:

  • The game is not much different from the old one
  • The soundtrack is still really good
  • The graphics are out of this world
  • The story is very interesting

Cons:

  • The story sometimes does not add up
  • Certain events make the game hard to finish
  • Playing as different characters can be difficult
  • The narrative is everywhere

 

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Writing. Topics. Editing. Headlines. In the heart of Texas, Dom has mastered the elements of writing. With her creative mind, she bends words to her will and enjoys the perfect game.
Gamer Since: 2001
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: The Last of Us II
Top 3 Favorite Games:Five Nights at Freddys, Left 4 Dead 2, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt


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Erod7375's picture

Erod7375 1 year 11 months ago

This is a truly eye opening reading to the whole game community. Well done dom!

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