Set 5 years after the events of The Last of Us, we see the return of Joel and Ellie. Driven by hatred, Ellie sets out for Seattle to serve justice. However, she begins to wonder what justice really means.
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This review contains spoilers
[Spoiler Warning oh who gives a shit]
You know, when I write reviews for bad games, I like to make funny jokes just to spice it up instead of just being totally bleak the whole way through. But, I can't do that here. I'm just so angry that words cannot possibly describe the mental anguish, grief, and sheer dumbfounding disbelief that a game like this has costed me.
Just a bit of context, I am a huge fan of the original Last of Us. Huge is an understatement. It is my favorite video game of all time next to games like Final Fantasy VI and Metal Gear Solid 3, it's #1 on my top 5 favorite games of all time. The impact that the game has left on me when I was a teenager and how it taught me many important life lessons and carried me through some of the most depressing times of my life during my high school days, it cannot be underestimated.
I am now 24 years old and I still believe that The Last of Us 1 is truly lightning in a bottle, a game that cannot be replicated the same way Naughty Dog did all those years ago. I love the game so much that I got the platinum trophy for the game not once, but twice, and have spent a minimum of 500 hours on the Factions Multiplayer. That's much I couldn't get enough of it. I've played all of Naughty Dog's games since the original Crash Bandicoot on the PS1, they've been my all-time favorite video game company, and to think that a single game could have made them fall from grace this much, it's truly heartbreaking and it has majorly affected me as a gamer.
Which is why it is so painful to write a review for the sequel. When it was revealed in 2016 I was literally crying. I was more hyped for that game than any other. I bought my PS4 for the remaster of The Last of Us 1 and was damn ready for Part II. It's not a perfect game but it is MY perfect game, so I was expecting the sequel to not be able to surpass it. I mean, the first game was so masterfully crafted, how could the sequel surpass it anyway? Even then, I was at least expecting it to be a fantastic fucking game and not what we ended up getting.
How did we end up going from The Last of Us 1 which got 9/10s and 10/10s across the board across every gaming site from fans to The Last of Us 2 which had a User Score of 3.3 at launch on Metacritic? COUGH I mean Betacritic since they disabled the ability to write negative reviews which raised the aggregate User Score to a 5.7 because they have certain "priorities" to uphold.
This shit truly blows my mind and is something that I will never forget. This whole fiasco is such a shitshow that it's giving me flashbacks of god awful games and movies like Fallout 76, Star Wars The Last Jedi, Game of Thrones Season 8, Ride to Hell Retribution, the final season of Breaking Bad, Captain Marvel, Batwoman, Silent Hill HD Collection, Metal Gear Survive, and Battlefield 5.
The majority of these games, movies, and TV shows have absolutely BUTCHERED their respective IPs and franchises, and The Last of Us has also fallen victim to this ongoing trend. It's like the beginning of the end of entertainment as we know it.
The Last of Us Part 2 is one of the most, if not, the most miserable, anti-consumer, self-indulgent, incoherent, preachy, cowardly, soulless, manipulative, misleading, and downright offensive games I have ever played and witnessed in my entire life. I can't believe this game was even made, and most others believe the same way since they don't even acknowledge that this game is canon to the franchise.
This game has created such a disconnect between the gamers, game journalists, and the developers themselves that it has created one of the greatest onslaught of memes, hate videos, and the biggest drop in sales for a game one week after launch I have ever witnessed, and it is both brutal and hilarious. Naughty Dog and Directors Neil Drukkman and Haley Gross should be absolutely ashamed of themselves for taking everything that people loved for the past seven years and completely obliterating it.
And this is why people are stepping away from these woke SJW trash companies like IGN, Gamespot, Polygon, etc. and they're moving onto YouTube personalities instead for reliable information and reviews, because they don't follow a bias and will tell you what you should be knowing, and don't praise a game because it has woke inclusion in it for the sake of pandering.
Because game journalists are not even real gamers, they're fucking activists. In reality, the hate video games and the people that play and support them. They're not about covering games, they only care for the diversity and inclusion box ticking.
This might be the longest review for a game I will ever write, even longer than my Cyberpunk 2077 review, but if you're reading all of this, I thank you.
Joel, our most beloved character dies only 2 hours into the game. And this game is 25-30 hours long. Let's do a calculation really quick.
2 out of 25 as a percentage is 8..
2 out of 30 as a percentage is 6.66...
Are you telling me that out of this 25-30 hour game, Joel is alive 6-8% of the entire game, not including the flashback sequences? Are you fucking kidding me???
Why is the character that we bonded so much with in the first game dies only two hours into Part 2, and he is only playable for FIVE MINUTES in the introduction on horseback?? How can you even call this a Last of Us game without Joel and Ellie? The whole point of the first game is about them, as well as the surrounding characters that support them throughout their journey. But if you don't have Joel and Ellie together like you did before, the game will just lose its purpose, weight, and most of all, investment.
The moment you killed off Joel so abruptly, you created a huge disconnect with the player, and as a result, the game just becomes boring, and it lacks the depth and soul that the first game had.
See, Joel dying as a concept is not a bad idea. In fact, I actually did think before the game came out that he was going to die. But the way they handled it was just so rushed, so forced, so nonsensical, and it had no agency to it. It just comes out of the blue and we just have to deal with it, and there is a reason for this.
The Last of Us 2 became about identity politics instead of moral dilemmas. This game is a werewolf crossed with a Social Justice Warrior. People in the game were arbitrarily good or bad depending on their gender, their sexual orientation, or their views on the world. Naughty Dog retconed the living shit out the first game just so they could cuck Joel and Ellie and antagonize them.
The marketing of this game flat out lied to you. Naughty Dog actually pulled a Cyberpunk and faked all of their trailers. They pulled a bait and switch and actually swapped out character models in the trailers to make it look like we were going to get another Joel and Ellie journey, so that they could sell more copies when the game came out.
This is some of the most evil shit I have ever seen a company do. They fooled everyone with this deceptive advertising, which makes me wonder why CD Projekt Red are getting such an incredible amount of shit from both gamers and their shareholders, with lawsuits, stock plummets, and their company getting straight up hacked and having their games being held up for ransom, but Naughty Dog gets to walk away unscathed. Seriously, not even EA or Activision have pulled a troll move on this caliber.
Naughty Dog hid important story details and faked their trailers because they knew that what they did to Joel and Ellie in this game was fucking despicable. They kill off Joel a couple hours into the game, they tell us that everything he did in the first game was objectively wrong despite how players felt about it, they treat him like shit in the flashback sequences, they demoralize him throughout the whole game, they did him dirty. Big time.
Ellie isn't any better. She is nothing like she was in the first game. In the first game she was funny, witty, sarcastic, caring, and just an overall loveable person, and also showed signs of weakness despite being a very tough girl. She had as much character as Joel did. I loved Ellie the same way that I loved Joel, that's why the first game worked so well.
But then in the second game, Ellie is entitled, ungrateful, edgy, tryhard, whiny, sadistic, idiotic, and just straight up evil. What in the living fuck did you guys do to Ellie in this game?? I get that this game is supposed to be darker with Joel dying and whatnot, but Ellie is just so unrelatable in this game, and the shit that she does in this game lacks all sense of rhyme or reason, most of which has nothing to do with Joel's death.
Ellie is mad at Joel for lying about the Fireflies so that he could save her, but what Ellie neglects is the fact that not only is it actually fucking impossible to create a vaccine for a fungal infection, and also, what makes Ellie think that the Fireflies aren't just a group of terrorists that were willing to kill a 14 year old for the sake of having the POTENTIAL to get a cure? Joel knows this. And that's why he saved her, not just because he has grown attached to her like he did with Sarah.
But regardless, Ellie acts like a shitty ungrateful asshole to Joel until the day that he actually dies, which is just so fucking unpleasant and you can't help but feel awful for Joel. Joel saves her life numerous times only to be told by Ellie that she doesn't need his help anymore. How utterly disgusting... What did you guys do to Ellie???
Going back to Joel and Ellie being together, you can't have a Last of Us game with just Joel, and you can't have a Last of Us game with just Ellie. You need to have both. But then Neil Drukkman and Anita Sarkeesian come along with the sequel and are all like "Hey, we want Joel to not have any of the qualities that he had in the first game. We want his reputation burned to the ground and his credibility destroyed within the two hours of the game, and throughout the rest of the game we will continue to demonize both him and Ellie while making a trans friendly character named Abby into the new protagonist and make her look like the good person in comparison. Because PATRIARCHY."
"Oh, this Abby person is gonna kill Joel by the way. He saves her life a few times from infected, and she is going to return the favor by blowing off his knee cap with a shotgun, torture him, and then smash his skull in with a golf club, because Joel killed her father at the end of the first game when he saved Ellie from being sacrificed so humanity could MAYBE get a cure."
...A cure for a fungal infection...that never existed before the apocalypse...and never will exist...and won't fix how fucked up the world has become with bandits and faction groups at war with each other....
Oh, and Abby's father was just a random NPC in the first game...and he was black...now he is white...
Oh my god my brain. Who fucking thought that this was a good idea? Was no one man enough to step up and say "Neil, what the fuck are you doing? Do you realize that this makes absolutely no sense what so ever and is insanely cliche?"
Oh right, of course no one would speak up, out of fear of losing their job and being cancelled by the Woke mob.
This is just absolutely awful, and you feel awful just for witnessing it. They made all the characters in this game unlikable, they demonize Joel and Ellie, the two of them get emasculated and replaced as the protagonists with a sexually conforming or non conforming steroid abusing Hulk Smash bodybuilder/golfer in a fucking ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE, every character is killed off as soon as they are introduced, and they try to humanize Abby but they start this off by having her kill your favorite fucking character.
That is just as effective as introducing yourself to your new stepson by sending the little fella a selfie of yourself fucking his mom in the ass while flexing your muscles.
By that point, you despise Abby and everything she stands for, and you just don't care about what happens to her. You just want to see her suffer a slow and painful death.
Why do you think there are numerous and numerous amounts of YouTube compliation videos of players purposefully dying as Abby? Because everyone fucking hates Abby. They don't want to fucking play as her. They want to see her die for killing Joel even before Ellie gets that chance on her revenge quest. We wanted a game with Joel and Ellie. How hard is that to understand?
Also, how in the fuck does Abby keep a swole body like that in a world where a good day is finding some out of date canned bacon in a cupboard?
Abby has been living a good life. She literally lives in a fucking football stadium with other trained soldiers with good food, a library with tons of books, and a gym. A fucking gym. With weight training equipment and whatnot. And then you go outside and there are people cooking burgers on grills and there is a shooting range. There are people lining up in a cafeteria to get BURRITOS. How the fuck?!
Where in the holy mother of shit did these guys get all of this ammo, food, guns, a working firing range, and WEIGHT TRAINING EQUIPMENT 25 years into the fucking apocalypse? It makes no sense!!
This basically makes it even more impossible to feel sorry for Abby, because she is living an incredibly privileged life with good food, high quality living space, and friends who look out for her.
The game is set up so that Abby looks like the good guy in all of this while making Joel and Ellie, the people that we are supposed to root for, into the villains. What kind of madness is this? This is so fucked up and bullshit on so many levels. And the game takes away any sort of player agency so that Abby is the only one who gets a happy ending, while everyone else is either dead, gone, miserable, etc.
You even play as Abby as you beat the shit out of Ellie in a boss fight because Ellie killed her comrades. Why?? Why are we playing as Abby in this fight? So now more than ever, you as the player wants Ellie to defeat Abby, but you can't. Because if you let Ellie kill Abby, the game will just restart the checkpoint. Because then the game would be over and we can all move on with our lives.
Having to play as this freak of nature and then having to beat the shit out of a beloved character and her pregnant girlfriend, who had nothing to do with anything, is just so sickening and distasteful that you can't help but feel nauseous.
And this the second time Abby spares Ellie. The first time was where she forced Ellie to watch her beat her surrogate father to death, and now she spares her again after Lev tells her not to kill Dina.
These characters have so much fucking plot armor that you can't help but laugh at it. These are less like characters and more like objects to push the plot forward.
Only reason why Abby spares them is because Lev tells her to stop.
Ellie goes on a quest to avenge Joel and has put the lives of so many of her comrades on the line and has been through so much suffering and yet at the very moment that she has the chance to kill Abby, she doesn't go through with it. She even lost her fingers so she can't play her guitar anymore which was the very last thing that had her connect to Joel. If someone killed my father or father figure and bit my fingers off in an attempt to kill me then damn fucking well I would kill the bitch, but no, Ellie has a random flashback of Joel while she is drowning Abby and decides "Just fucking go."
This is just a broken narrative on so many factors and it blows my mind that this is the same company that gave us Uncharted 2 and The Last of Us 1. It is hands down the biggest fuck you of an ending I've seen in any game, movie, or TV show.
Abby has killed Joel, killed hundreds of other people, threatened to slit Dina's throat to spite Ellie, and took pleasure in it, took an 8 month pregnant lady on a fucking scavenging mission with her and was totally okay with it, crippled Tommy by shooting him in the leg and then in the eye, she killed Jessie, who was traveling with Ellie and Dina (then again, all Jessie was used in this game was just to be a sperm donor for Dina to push the plot forward, but even though he was bland, he was one of the better characters of this game), and then bit off Ellie's fingers and now she can't play the guitar anymore, and to top it all off, she has sex with Owen while getting off to torturing Joel more, in what can only be described as the most disgusting uncensored hate fuck scene I've ever witnessed in a video game.
Abby is an absolutely despicable, irredeemable piece of shit. Even Mel, the pregnant lady, said it herself. And yet we are supposed to side with her? And we are supposed to believe that Ellie is totally okay with letting her go? Are you guys out of your fucking minds?? Seriously, I-I...
Wow, I can't even put into words how shocking this is. This is just... Wow. I thought Game of Thrones Season 8 was bad. The Last of Us 2 might actually gave me more respect towards that.
So what was the moral of the story?
REVENGE IS BAD OOOOH
SENSELESS KILLING IS BAAAAD
APPRECIATE THE CONSEQUENCES OF YOUR ACTIONS EVEN THOUGH WE TOOK ALL CONTROL AWAY FROM YOU HOW DO YOU FEEL?!
Ellie carves a murderous, bloody path across the land, like in that game Hatred, where the main protagonist just senselessly slaughters innocent people on sight because life is shit and nilhisitic according to him. But the ONE person that Ellie doesn't kill is the one who started this whole ordeal in the first place, which just made the whole journey a giant fucking waste of time.
Slaughtering hundreds of random people across the game as Ellie is made as if what you are doing is bad and wrong, but the moment that Ellie is seconds away from drowning Abby, after everything that she has done, is the moment where Ellie has an epiphany where REVENGE IS BAD.
It dives into the topic of the cycle of violence, but it fucking shows us and lets us cause that violence. Oh yeah, violence ends the cycle of violence, isn't that right guys?
The game forces you repeatedly into situations where you MUST kill the enemies to advance the plot, including dogs. This game promotes dog killing and killing pregnant women (Ellie kills Mel). However you want to kill the dogs, you can do it however you want to, even setting them on fire. Just regular guard dogs being protective of their owners. This is fucking demented, and perhaps I am saying this because I own pets myself.
But this is all meant to make Ellie look like an even bigger maniacal shithead just to make Abby look better. There is literally a scene where Ellie kills Abby's guard dog in an act of self defense, but then right after that it goes into a flashback where Abby is seen playing with the dogs.
See, see? Ellie kills dogs but Abby saves them and plays with them. Her father saved a zebra and therefore you should like him.
Do you like Abby yet?
And going back to the whole Mel scene, Ellie stabs her in the throat, and that was the moment that the coat opens up and Ellie sees the baby that she just killed.
"Oh no!! Ellie just killed a pregnant woman? What are the ramifications of that?!"
It's never mentioned again.
Wait, what's that? It's never mentioned again. Just like with the deaths of Manny, Nora, Yara, Owen, Jessie, none of their deaths are mentioned after they die. Soooo.. what was the point?
This is just childish levels of manipulation and stupidity.
You know this whole Abby shit is bad when they hid Abby in all the trailers pre-release but then also releases an Abby Trailer 6 months after the game comes out, which just shows the level of sheer incompetence that is going on at Naughty Dog right now.
Christ, I didn't even get into the other characters. You have other characters in Abby's group. You have Manny who at the start is vicious, he spits on our father figure's dead body and just goes around shouting PENEDJO every five fucking minutes but then later on he is all like "Ayyyyy I am Manny, I get all the pussy, I fuck her, and a her, and a her, and I got a sex dungeon in the city where I do my fucking!"
Oh? Manny is meant to be likeable?
And then Owen does remain relatively consistent throughout, that is until he gets Mel pregnant but then cheats on her with Abby...
Oh good God...
And Mel is the bestest ever surgeon and the bestest ever archer, and then Yara comes along Lev comes along, and Lev is a transexual who wants his mother to accept him in a world where people are getting eaten by fucking PLANT MONSTERS, and being raped, murdered, and looted by bandits, random strangers, and faction groups.
This is a world where you're trying to get a roof over your head, where you're trying to find a meal, where you're trying to get clothes, where you're trying to gear yourself up to survive against hordes of infected, but no, we gotta worry about gender and being accepted. In the zombie apocalypse. Sweet fucking Jesus.
And then Lev's mother's arm becomes septic and it needs to be operated on so then Abby goes off to find the tools needed and she has to look after Lev, Joel and Ellie style, and then later on there is a faction war and you're shooting at people on a horse and you're fighting big guys with sledgehammers and it's just like
You guys are juggling so many balls at once that you forgot what you were supposed to be doing. This game is so fucking bloated. It needed to be trimmed down by at least 8-10 hours. Because most of the time it is going nowhere trying to build all of these characters to try to make them likeable and it's just so messy.
You're just going here to here, here to here, here to here, and you don't feel as if there is a reason for doing any of it.
And the infected have become completely trivialized in this game. The infected are everything that drives the plot of the first game, but here, they barely mean anything.
And Ellie's immunity to the infection doesn't mean anything anymore either. There is a moment in the game where Ellie and her girlfriend Dina are running from a horde of Infected and Ellie's gas mask breaks, because she is trying to hide her immunity. Dina is horrified by the fact that Ellie is breathing in spores. When they get to the theater, Ellie reveals to Dina that she was bitten many years ago but she never turned, because she is immune.
It's supposed to be a moment of revelation, and what does Dina do? She decides to COUNTERACT Ellie by saying "Oh! I think I'm pregnant!!"
And it's such a comical CW moment. Nothing ever gets to sit and rest. It feels like Ellie and Dina are less like lovers and more like two middle aged men trying to one up each other.
Dina doesn't even get that much development throughout. Her motivations are never clear as to why she wants to go with Ellie. All the game tells you is that the two of them started dating the day that Joel dies and all of a sudden we are expected to be attached to the two of them, without any sort of prior development.
And while Joel was having his head smashed in by Abby, Ellie and Dina neglect their patrol by smoking weed, talking about a kiss the two had the day before, and then proceed to have off screen sex with each other.
In the beginning of the game, Abby and her crew are absolutely vicious and unforgiving, but then later on, none of them reflect on what they did, especially Abby. She doesn't reflect on anything or regret anything that she did. In fact, they turn all of these characters into completely different people just to try to get the player to sympathize and relate to them, and it is just so basic, manipulative, and flat out childish.
It's almost like this game was made by a nihilist serial killer hiding underneath its wretched skin ready to murder everything that you loved about your childhood.
We have waited 7 years for a continuation to The Last of Us 1, and when we finally get it, they shit all over Joel and Ellie, they make you focus on entirely different characters that you just can't relate or connect to, and yet you spend more time with them than with the characters that you have been waiting all these years to play as, and by the end of the game everyone is either dead or broken.
And all of the new characters that you do actually like in this game are again, dead, gone, or broken.
Remember that scene in Last of Us 1 just before Joel and Ellie get to the Firefly Hospital, Ellie tells Joel that everything that they had been through cannot be for nothing? Well sorry to say kiddo, but everything you went through was all for nothing in the end. You lost your father figure, you lost your girlfriend and her child, you lost your friend Jessie, your Uncle in law Tommy lost his wife and disappeared, and you lost your fingers so you can't play guitar anymore.
This really is the most miserable end to a game in history. Then again, the whole game is miserable. Nothing gets to sit in. There is no light hearted moments to speak of in this game. The first game had some funny and light hearted moments in it to break up the sorrow moments. But in The Last of Us 2, the whole game is just compounded misery porn.
There is so much darkness, so much hatred and sorrow, that it just becomes extremely tiring after a while. You become desensitized and immune to it eventually. And it gets to a point of parody, because it's nothing but people dying and suffering. It's death, death, death, death, death, death, death, and more goddamn death.
And this constant death makes it extremely difficult to get attached to anyone, so when someone does die, you don't give a shit. Because almost every fucking person in this game gets killed off. Joel, Jessie, Owen, Manny, Mel, Nora, Yara, etc.
The game fantasizes and promotes really god awful shit like dog killing and sending out pregnant women to the frontlines of combat with a fucking UNBORN CHILD. What?!
So it wants to be against the cycle of violence and how revenge is bad, but it glorifies the very thing that it's fighting against, it's very hypocritical.
"But, but, but, but, Kat, that's the whole point of the game. Look at the reaction it's getting from you. That's why Neil Drukkman did it. He did it to SuBveRt OuR ExPectAtIons."
tongue spitting noises
By subverting our expectations you mean by giving us something that none of us have asked for. By appealing to everyone but your loyal customers, the people who are fucking woke activists, people who don't actually buy, play, and support your products in the first place. Neil Drukkman set out to make a game that HE wanted to make that HE wanted it to be made just to pander. The moment you decided to go against your fans and kiss Anita Sarkeesian's feet was the moment you fucked up, Neil. Because now most people have completely lost interest in not just this game, but also the future of your company.
This game is the equivalent of someone having daddy issues seeking therapeutic relief by channeling all of his hatred into a video game narrative and then shitting all over people who are either white, male, straight, or a combination of all three.
You have divided your customer base like what Disney and Lucasfilm is doing with Star Wars. And look at how that is turning out for the franchise.
All I can say is lmfao and good luck in the future, because you're gonna really need it.
This game is the textbook example of how NOT to make a sequel to a beloved game. You guys really should take a look at the book called "Customer Service for Dummies." and then come back to us when you guys have an idea on how to make good video games again.
There isn't much to talk about here. Outdated would be the best word to describe it. Aside from a few rope puzzles and safe code cracking sequences, this game barely does anything to evolve the gameplay from the first game. The shooting is still as clunky as the first game, and there is now a jump button, and a dodge button unlike in the first game, oh yeeeeeahhh.
It also rehashes the same melee mechanics from the first game. You just mash square mindlessly except this time you push L1 to dodge which somehow makes combat flow even slower, because there are times where you HAVE to push dodge or else your enemy will just keep endlessly attacking you.
According from what I have read online, the jump button was invented in 1978. So excuse me for not shitting my bed with excitement with this new addition to the franchise, a game mechanic that is literally as old as a fucking Back to the Future Delorian car.
Also you barely ever use the jump button so that's nice as well.
The game also has the exact same crafting mechanics from the first game, every item requires the same ingredients to make just like in the first game, except now you can craft things like explosive arrows and oil can suppressors.
You can also go prone and hide in tall grass.
Um, can I just address something?
Metal Gear Solid 2 from 2001 did all of this before. Suppressors, proning, CQC combat, it even had dive rolling, all of this was done before, so what exactly did The Last of Us 2 bring to the table in terms of innovating the gameplay again?
It feels like this game is stuck in the last generation, because it just rehashes the gameplay mechanics from the first game. It's The Last of Us 1, but worse. A lot worse. That's the best I can describe it.
There are many other games that do stealth better than this, there are hundreds of games that do shooting better than this, and there are thousands of games that have a better story than this.
Abby is so "badass and cool" that she gets all of the best weapons and upgrades in the game. I swear to God this game was designed to be Abby and Lev's game instead of Joel and Ellie's.
Funny enough, watching Abby run around aimlessly punching the ever living shit out of people with her massive WWE arms is one of the best parts about this game. There's just something so utterly stupid about it, it's hilarious. Like watching a female version of Hulk Hogan going ape shit on zombies and other people.
Watching her sprinting and pinning someone on a wall while screaming "FUCK YOU BRO" and then punching them to death is all I think about in my head.
The stealth mechanics are still exactly the same as well. You can stab people repeatedly in the neck as you please and delight in the blood gurgling sounds as your enemy fears for his/her shambling of their mortal coil.
And when you're running around being a murderous psychopath, you are running around listening to pointless exposition as you are picking up crap all over the place.
Pick up shit there, pick up shit there, pick, pick, pick, pick, pick. It's literally a picking up crap simulator.
The first game had this too but at least the characters and the writing actually broke up the repetition of jogging around and looting for materials, it felt real and grounded.
Since you fight dogs now, you can actually see them in your Listen Mode. You can also see them tracking your scent. I'm sorry but I'm pretty sure that you can't be stinky enough to be able to literally SEE your own stench..using..your ears..
Am I fucking crazy or does this make no sense at all?
And holy mother of shit, the violence in this game is just horrifying. It is unnecessarily gory, and I've played every DOOM game. The first Last of Us game had violent stuff in it as well but it was kept at a moderate level. I like violent video games, but they went above and beyond to make the violence in Last of Us 2 as sadistic and uncomfortable as humanly possible. It really doesn't help that you seem to fight a lot more human enemies than infected which just makes it all more unpleasant.
And in the first game, Joel only had to commit violent deeds because he did it to protect Ellie. But Ellie in The Last of Us 2 just goes on a murderous rampage, and some of the shit that she does in this game is so, so much worse than the shit that Joel did.
Enemies scream and shout out each other's names when killed in a pathetic attempt to generate empathy, which is yet another stupid gimmick just to make the player feel bad.
This is a game where you are forced to be a bloodthirsty murderous cunt, takes away any sort of player agency, all with Ellie saying stupid insults and comments, and all the while, the game is trying to have some sort of bulked narrative that tries to teach you about the consequences of your actions.
This is a game where it is essentially a murder simulator, but then stupidly thought that the player would feel bad about the choices that they DID NOT make. It's embarrassing.
I will say one thing and say that they did do a great job with all the accessibility settings. They went all out to make The Last of Us 2 the most accessible game ever. There are like 60 different options to choose from . You can basically play the game however you want. The game has gotten much deserved praise from disabled people.
But, does that mean anything in the end? Because even though the game is the most accessible game out there right now, and even if the gameplay was more polished and had more mechanics to truly evolve it, and even if the game is the most beautiful looking game I've ever seen, why the hell would you want to play it anyway? The game is miserable from beginning to end. No matter how good the gameplay is, the story is still shit, and the game hates you for playing it.
This is basically the equivalent of giving your money to a friend to go bring back some breakfast for the two of you from iHop, but then when she comes home he spits in your food, because you are a straight person instead of a gay person.
We don't play The Last of Us because we can punch people, craft molotov cocktails to throw at dogs, stab people in the throat, move objects around to solve trivial puzzles, and blow people's legs off with a shotgun. We play The Last of Us for the story. And if the story is bad, the game is bad. That's just by the by.
I may have slagged the shit out of this game, but there are good things about it as I have mentioned before. Beautiful graphics and animations, the weapon upgrading is both eye and ear candy, the guns feel good to use despite the clunky aiming, and the soundtrack, while isn't as good as the first games', it's still really damn good. And the praise it got for the insane amount of accessibility options from disabled gamers is heartfelt.
But all of the good of this game is completely overshadowed by everything that is wrong with it. It's a very pretty game, but that's all I can say about it. Playing through it is just fuckin' insufferable.
I've never played a game that is so against the player in everything it stands for. It is quite literally an anti-video game.
As if it wasn't enough that this game is as truly horrific as it was, it's even worse when you consider just how awfully the developers were treated at Naughty Dog just to churn this shit out. This is just another reason on top of everything else that is simply why I just can't support this game. Neil Drukkman crunched the living shit out his development team to the point that employees had to be hospitalized, I wish I was joking.
Throughout the course of development between Uncharted 4 and The Last of Us 2, there has been around a 70% employee turnover, for multiple reasons. They were given unpaid overtime, the work conditions were toxic as hell, and they hated the direction Neil Drukkman took the story in. This is the largest amount of employee turnover I have ever seen for a game studio.
These guys had to start hiring people in the film and television industry for assistance because they simply were losing too many people who worked on previous games. It is a total fucking disaster.
Not to mention Neil Drukkman attacked the fans on social media, not only calling us bigots, homophobic, sexist, etc. for hating the direction he took the story in, but also actively tried to take down YouTube channels and ruin their livelihoods who dared to talk about the god awful decisions he made with the characters and the direction of the story in contrast to the first game, and how it just rectons everything for the sake of promoting his ABBY SMASH character.
If you dared to question Neil, you would get labeled as a phobic or something, when it has nothing to do with that. I don't care what your gender or sexual orientation is. I'm just mad that you took everything I loved about the Last of Us 1 and had none of it carry over into Part 2. I have seen Sonic the Hedgehog fan fiction that is written way better than this.
Neil Drukkman sacrifices the artistic integrity of the first game and what everyone loved about it for the sake of pushing stereotypes of intersectional groups, yet he is so surprised when none of us liked that. It's fucking cheap, lazy, and disrespectful to the people who worked really hard on that game.
I know that Haley Gross is the Co-Director, but it's very clear who had all of the power in this shitty theater play.
All of this destruction for the sake of pandering to Anita Sarkeesian and people like her, like the LGBT community and the Social Justice Warrior community. But even the LGBT and some SJWs themselves fucking hate the game. So they even failed to appeal to the very people that they were trying to pander to. That's just humiliating.
And you can see the pushback from fans, because all over Twitter are hundreds of pictures of unsold copies of the game from all over the world, just sitting and rotting on store shelves. There's fucking thousands of them!!
I've seen streamers taking the discs out and cutting the damn things up live on stream. I've seen how Neil Drukkman provoked the people who hated The Last of Us 2 by telling us that he was having his fanboy army spam voting for the game to win Game of the Year, and what happened? We responded and got Ghost of Tsushima to win.
A lot of these Last of Us 2 copies were returned, because people don't want them. It got to the point where stores that sold games were rejecting any more returns because there were just too many copies, they couldn't handle any more.
You wanna know what this reminds of? E.T. the Extra Terrestrial on the Atari 2600. Yeah, it's that fucking bad.
I know that the game did make record sales in its opening week, and I think it was the #6 best selling game of 2020 period, but here is something you have to consider. The fact that the game dropped in sales at least 80% globally in week two, and considering the massive amount of returns of the game has, where do you think it is right now, if these sites actually updated the numbers after all the returns? In 6 months time, or even a year, where is it gonna be? I'm pretty sure around half of the copies that were sold were given back to stores.
The game will only sell a small fraction of what The Last of Us 1 did, so when you think about that, that's terrible for a sequel to a beloved game. Who knows, Sony and Naughty Dog must have lost money on this game. The best comparison I could make are the Justice League and Birds of Prey movies.
You guys at Naughty Dog preach about women while at the same time, you are the type who cancel other people who have their own opinions and thoughts. COUGH GINA CARANO
But this is where we are at in 21st century entertainment. Where companies are selfish people by nature. If a game isn't stuffed to the brim with greedy anti-consumer microtransactions, it's stuffed to the brim with anti-consumer woke identity politics. Because that's what they want to give us apparently.
It's almost as if there is no such thing as escapism in our video games anymore. Everything now has to be political and preachy or else we are bigots who need to be "educated"... Wha??
I have nothing against women and feminism, but if you are one of those radical extremists that tells me that I should be dead or my livelihood should burn to the ground because I am an independent person with my own thoughts and opinions and they don't fall under your agenda, then I will just say that you are no better than the spread of Communism propaganda during the late 20th century.
[FINAL MESSAGE TO NEIL DRUKKMAN]
This is a game that wants to make you miserable and at a price. Neil Drukkman went on record by saying that The Last of Us 2 is about hatred. Well congrat-u-fucking-lations, Neil, because almost everyone hates this game, and almost everyone hates you.
We don't hate you solely because of the fact that you are a leftist, Neil. We hate you because you botched this high anticipated game with your dreadful writing, and then you tried to blame it on the supposed sexism and homophobia of the "alt-Right", which is just so outrageous.
You even went as far as to pull off a Kurt Cobain by saying "If you don't like it then don't buy it."
Yeah, because that worked so well when EA did it when people were complaining about Battlefield 5.
This game really has brought out the worst in people. It's a game that is a culmination of all of 2020's hatred and malice. Is this what video games are trying to be now? Less like fun games and more like 50 shades of gray progressive vessels to preach to the audience?
You lied to people using dishonest promotional material just to sell more copies at launch.
You tried to cowardly fuck over the YouTube community with false DMCA takedown claims and nearly ruined their livelihoods because they had the balls to call you out on your shitty writing choices.
(Can I just mention that this is illegal?)
You completely changed the personalities of beloved characters from the first game for the sake of creating artificial conflict.
You killed off Joel in the most traumatizing and disrespectful way you could have done it.
You took everything about Ellie that we loved in the first game and utterly butchered her while also taking away everything that she fought for.
You forced us to play as a character we didn't want to for 10+ hours straight who murdered Joel in a lazy half-assed attempt to get us to sympathize with her.
You made us kill and brutalize dogs in the most inhumane ways possible after you said we wouldn't have to.
You made the zombies in this zombie apocalypse game irrelevant.
You made us watch an utterly gross explicit uncensored Abby sex scene despite of Sony's hypocritical stance on censorship policies.
You shoved representation and bulking women down our throats to get extra doggie treats from Anita Sarkeesian.
You gave Abby, the clear villain, the only good ending out of everyone else in this game.
7 years of development and this was the best that you could come up with? Seriously, you are a disgrace to video game development and the gaming community at large. Your presence is a plague in an industry that millions upon millions of people have expressed so much passion for. You went as far as to put your employees' health in jeopardy as long as it meant that you could shove the game out the door as quick as possible. You have no respect for the art form that you are supposed to represent.
Joel and Ellie, and your fans of the first Last of Us game, deserved so much better than what you have done to them. All I can say is fuck you, dude, you manipulative piece of shit.
And yet games journalism and media is just eating it the fuck up while also siding with the corporation. It's basically corruption if you think about it.
Well, guess I'll just go back to Days Gone and Ghost of Tsushima, at least those guys actually care about their fans.
And I doubt that the TV show and the Multiplayer to The Last of Us 2 will fully ever come to fruition and reach their full potential, considering how badly received the single player is being received. It will literally be a Game of Thrones situation where everyone will have lost interest and will just move onto other things instead.
I mean you know it's bad when only 5 months after it released, it was only $30 on Black Friday, and then it was still $30
or even $20 around Christmas. That's terrible for a AAA game.
Edit: And the comments to this are already fucking priceless.
"DUDE so are you saying FFVIIR, Nioh 2, and Days Gone were also desperate? That they had to go on $20 sales because they were losing
Money? Or do you think it was just because EVERY PS4 GAME WENT ON SALE FOR BLACK FRIDAY LOL"
Yeah no fucking shit, Sherlock. But all of those games that I mentioned in my response are games that have come out long before The Last of Us 2 did. The Last of Us 2 is less than a year old and even right now, I could dead ass go to my local Gamestop a couple miles from my home, and grab a mint condition copy of the game for $18-25, when other games like FFVIIR, Sekiro, Kingdom Hearts 3 with the ReMind DLC, Metro Exodus, and Remnant from the Ashes are still going for $30-45. And these games have not went on sale Digitally as many times as The Last of Us 2 did.
It won't be long until I probably start seeing the game inside of bargain bins at my local Family Dollar.
You wanna know why these other games go on sale? Lemme tell you sweetheart. It's not because these developers are desperate to sell more copies, they're just making it easier for people to afford them, especially considering how tough times have gotten this past year. Money has become harder to come by, more people are stuck in their houses everyday with nothing better to do. What is your excuse?
Ghost of Tsushima went on sale Digitally only a couple months after release but that's only cause physical copies were selling like hotcakes. So much so that it's pretty much impossible to find any. Stores were completely empty of them. And since the free Multiplayer update was coming which brought the hype train right back up again, people wanted the game more than ever.
That's called releasing a quality product and being committed to it to keeping your fans happy. You keep good relations with your consumers, they will keep coming back and investing in your product(s). That's how business works.
Let down by its weak story, poor structure, pandering writing, and trademark Naughtydog game design, The Last of Us 2 is a tragic sequel that will go the way of Alien 3 or Mass Effect Andromeda; forgotten, and possibly not considered canon.
It's a tragedy to see a masterpiece (which hasn't aged the best, but is still great) be followed up by such a lazy display of... well I'm not sure. The story often is at odds with itself, and the writer's hand can too often feel like they control the game and not the characters.
Abby is the main thing this game needed to get right, and it does not get her right at all. We have had amazing characters that we love to hate, hate to love, and root for despite their problems. Abby is none of those. She is a cynical plot device created to for a purpose that even the writers didn't seem sure of.
Was her purpose to be a Joel figure? An anti-hero? A super hero (who can single-handedly scale a massive skyscraper and defeat a massive monster in a one-on-one cartoon-ish fight)? A conflicted killer? An excited baby-killer ("good")? Who knows! The writers sure didn't.
I won't harp on her anymore. Most of the games flaws have been outlined in greater detail than one review can provide.
The fact next-to-no-one discusses the gameplay (in proportion to the story) is telling. It's not very good, but Naughtydog has been promoting a minimalist style of gameplay for years now. It's not my cup of tea, but if you liked the first game's gameplay, you will like this one more. It's punchier, more meaty, and has a lot more gore. What it lacks in substance, it makes up for in its impact. Just don't expect more than one playthrough for the sake of the gameplay-loop.
I wanted to keep this brief. I'm aware there's a lot of bad faith on both sides with this game, and I wanted to be fair and not waste time with this review. I'm writing for fun at the end of the day. So, if you think nihilistic, self-indulgent writing and half-baked action is fun, you might like this. If not, I would skip this one and consider the story finished at Ellie's "ok."
It takes a phenomenal amount of courage and confidence to make games that you know will disappoint, confuse, and anger people, especially when the reason is because those people love your previous games, and they are so attached to the characters and their memories that they don't ever want them to change.
But Naughty Dog does it, consistently, and with aplomb, delivering some of the most sculpted, crafted, affecting set piece games that exist. While it's impossible to ignore the specter of crunch required to create this level of detail and scope, it does not erase the admirable work and palpable love that has been poured into this game.
Like the first game, this is a game about love, but it's a much more visceral experience, bringing you through the lowest dregs of experience that can be attached to love. However, the value of the journey matches the cost.