The Last of Us comes at a very unique time in the life time of a PlayStation; right at the end when the machine is creaking, the fans are whirring and you can see your beloved console struggle to muster every last bit of power.
I have often wondered when both Sony and Naughty Dog are aware of the games’ quality, why do they launch only at the very end? The only reason I can come up with is, that this is a reward for players’ loyalty and a way to celebrate the end of a console generation! For a lot of players (me included), this will be the last Sony exclusive with the PlayStation 4 and this is a fitting end to a gaming generation.
We have waited 7 years and 5 days for this one; the word ‘patience’ seems inadequate to define the wait but to rejoin Ellie and Joel in their epic adventure, we have bided our time. The best way to begin this review is to ask “Was the wait worth it?” Yes, absolutely. It is impossible for any sequel to match what The Last of Us achieved. This one is a worthy successor and it is Ellie’s show all the way.
The game’s story is top-notch and the action encounters with the undead and the human factions one of a kind; Ellie is truly the protagonist now and is powerful, decisive and scary for all that face her. In terms of game-play, this in no Uncharted and there is no way here that you can ‘run and gun’ and ride your luck. With stealth and strategy at it its finest, the game-world allows you to approach it any way you feel like.
The game also has customisable difficulties for various aspects of play. For instance, you can choose a very high difficulty of combat but an easy setting for resources so that you don’t run out of ammo and essentials in sticky situations. Similarly, you can mix and match upgrades and choose the ones that enhance your abilities. This game is all about letting your imagination run amok.
However, be warned that this is no joy ride. The game is an ordeal for Ellie and Joel, and Naughty Dog has designed an experience that makes you suffer through it. There are few moments of joy and happiness in this arduous journey and I advise you to savour them to the fullest. The game can leave you mentally exhausted and emotionally drained as you reach the end, but the destination justifies it all.
There are few games for which you buy a console, this is one of them. Get it you must, if you own a PS4 (in my best Yoda-inspired voice). Seven years to the next one then?
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