Published on June 2nd, 2020 | by Andrew Bistak

The Last of Part 2 Preview …

Five years after their dangerous journey across the post-pandemic United States, Ellie and Joel have settled down in Jackson, Wyoming. Living amongst a thriving community of survivors has allowed them peace and stability, despite the constant threat of the infected and other, more desperate survivors.

If you missed the recent impressive State of Play presentation showcasing THE LAST OF US PART 2 from PlayStation, it gave fans a great glimpse into what they can expect in the sequel. Needless to say, the gameplay looked sturdy, the graphics amazing and given the post apocalyptic nature of the series, there are elements that were quite brutal and would probably make a few characters from Mortal Kombat gulp in terror. Could it have the makings of a perfect sequel?

As we were given a head start to play the game courtesy of Playstation, the State of Play presentation only just touched upon the greatness of this title and this world has only gotten worse since we lasted visited The Last of Us way back in 2013 or the remastered version in 2014. While the game focuses on Ellie, she has grown considerably as a person and as a fighter which is needed in this zombie-esq timeline where humans can sometimes be worse then the problem itself.

While the creators of The Last of Part 2 nicely reintroduce you to the world, including the main characters, you are immediately drawn into this immersive world once you have control of the characters. From the very first moment that you move, the world of this game is indeed truly interactive and it feels like you in a broken place and that seasonal weather doesn’t help either. As you start exploring the game (Seattle has never looked so bad… in a graphical good way that is), being reintroduced to the mechanics of walking, crouching, climbing and interacting with objects, you know you are home when you first see The Infected, especially the all too familiar sound of the Clickers… freaky!

In our “preview-build”, the level design is astonishing and here I thought that Red Dead Redemption 2 was the be-all-and-end-all in terms of “open-worlds” but The Last of Us 2 is multilayered. Sure it is more confined but wow, those graphics on the PlayStation 4 Pro tick all the right boxes. Furthermore, Seattle itself looks like something out of a Hollywood blockbuster movie but rather than just a soulless game, this title has some great attention to detail and it’s sometimes the small things that matter, such as finding the right items to make that Molotov cocktail or finding an upgrade to your gun so that it shoots faster when it all hits the fan.

You also realise how damn terrifying and deadly those stalkers are as well… who are more than just your Infected zombie grunts. In relation to enemies, the AI have received a huge power-boost when it comes to their intelligence, particularly the more advanced ones that you face who are generally humans. You also need to refrain from firing your gun or rifle because any loud sound will bring the enemy right to you, especially the clickers.

The solution? Stealth! To survive, you need stealth as you sneak around, target an enemy and then grab them to brutally take them out so they pose no danger to you and the rest of mankind. Given that both ranged and melee combats work great with the later an imperative in successfully completing the game, it makes for a fun dynamic.

While you might see a large group of the infected in the right place, you can throw a bottle or a brick to divert their attention while you sneak around and take them out one by one which looks good on paper and sometimes limited ammunition is the key to your survival.  Then you hear another rustle but this time it’s mother nature herself as you look to your Fitbit, noticing that your heart rate has gone up. Sure, it’s only a game you tell yourself  but with so much at stake, the developers should really be commended on the immersion factor… it’s definitely a wow experience.

Our full review of The Last of Us will be live on June 12 and until then, I’ll keep exploring this post-apocalyptic world from sewers to forests and abandoned (not really) cities.

About the Author

When he's not trying to save the world, Andrew enjoys travel (although loathes turbulence), going to the movies, reading and being a dad to his two dogs (and now twins) with his wife.

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