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The Last of Us Part II
The Last of Us Part II

PlayStation 4
Genre: Action
Developer: Naughty Dog Official Site: https://www.playstation.com/...
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertain...
Release Date:
19th June 2021
Tuesday, 23 June 2020
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 12:11am 23/06/20 | 7 Comments
A lot has been said across multiple aisles in seemingly different buildings set kilometres apart where The Last of Us Part II is concerned. Some narrative decisions have rubbed some the wrong way. Some character decisions have rubbed some the wrong way. Some gameplay decisions have rubbed some the wrong way.

But maybe those "some" are just approaching the game the wrong way.

Which is to say we've been through the torture-porn gauntlet that is The Last of Us Part II and like other games of unrelenting and brutal nature (Resi, Tomb Raider, The Evil Within etc) we pushed through and found something unique and confronting at the game's close. And while we did highlight our own issues with it, we're standing our ground on those issues being far less superficial and childish than some of the commentary doing the rounds on myriad forums and social media platforms.

With that in mind, we've collated a healthy and helpful list of reasons why you should play the game, how you could potentially find enjoyment out of it, and just why some of the issues people are having with it are out right ludicrous.

Here's a snippet:
Having Ellie come out as gay is not a reflection on her abilities; a straight Ellie and a gay Ellie are one and the same where humanistic drive and behaviour is concerned. That Naughty Dog wrote her as a gay character also has nothing to do with pandering to an audience requiring such diversity be represented. She’s just gay. It’s honestly not that hard to wrap your head around...
Click here for our helpful guide to getting the most enjoyment out of The Last of Us Part II as you can.
Friday, 12 June 2020
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 05:32pm 12/06/20 | 0 Comments
It's been a big day for Sony. This morning they blew the gaming world away with their plans for the PlayStation 5 and this afternoon embargo has lifted for reviews of the PS4's generation swansong, The Last of Us Part II.

We've actually had the game for a long time, and tackled it at the height of its challenge settings to give you the most in-depth review we could, while offering up as close to zero spoilers as possible.

Here's a snippet:
In part due to the challenge of reviewing the game as clearly as possible without breaking the rules in place, I decided to tackle it on Survival for the ultimate The Road-like experience. In the game’s opening menu, Survivor is described as “an intense, demanding challenge”, where “resources are extremely scarce and enemies are deadly”. Tonally, it’s no spoiler that the world of The Last of Us is brutal, as was established in the first game. While we’re all used to post-apocalyptic settings, more often than not enemies like zombies or mutated beasties are what’s referred to as ‘toys’ within these spaces; grindy fodder for combat, points or resource gathering -- moving, groaning imediements, often slow and easy to dispatch, despite large numbers. Especially if we’re in open-worlds or sandboxes.

This also usually means there’s at least *some* lightheartedness sprinkled throughout, but with The Last of Us as a franchise and, in particular, Part II, there’s little-to-no-room for joviality. Make no mistake, the brake lines are well and truly cut where in-your-face violence and brutality is concerned here.

And there are certainly no ‘toys’ in sight.
Click here for our full The Last of Us Part II review.
Monday, 1 June 2020
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 11:02pm 01/06/20 | 0 Comments
We've been playing through the finished The Last of Us Part II product for both preview and review purposes. And while we're still a while out from being able to deliver our full review, we've been given a green light inside the review embargo to post up some impressions from a specific section of the game. This hands-on piece is spoiler-free, and features comments from narrative lead, Hally Gross, so to remain clandestine where story and beats are concerned while interviewing the person leading the game's narrative... well, we're pretty proud of ourselves, if we do say so.

Here's a snippet from our hands-on:
The available section of narrative we’re allowed to talk about here took -- on Survival -- roughly two hours for me to punch through, and without a heavy arsenal of gear, fully clearing areas of all baddies was a 50/50 affair, which left some stones unturned. There are collectibles in the game, as well as important gear and ingredients, and there’s an upgrade system tied to multiple facets of Ellie’s basic requirements for successful survival, married alongside scavenging, but we don’t want to spoil how any of this works, because the very nature of the game is a moment-to-moment experience. You’ll learn early on that Naughty Dog has a clear idea of what you should be doing, when, how and why. “Wide linear” is what Hally referred to it as, but that doesn’t mean the game is locked down to a corridor experience. Agency comes in how you tackle the stealth sandbox moments, all while ensuring the carrot on the string is what drives you, and Ellie, forward.
Click here for our full hands-on preview.
Thursday, 28 May 2020
Post by KostaAndreadis @ 04:44pm 28/05/20 | 0 Comments
The latest Sony State of Play took place earlier today and it was all about The Last of Us Part II - with game director Neil Druckmann on hand to talk about the story and setting, with an extended gameplay sequence closing out the presentation.

Out on June 19 the wait is almost over - and from what we see here, it's looking as impressive as ever.



Of course there's a lot covered so if you want to go in fresh probably best not to watch it. The gameplay sequence at the end though, it does showcase the next-level detail found in the game's animation systems and overall presentation. As Naughty dog's largest and most ambitious game to date it's also brutal in its depiction of survival. And intense.
Thursday, 7 May 2020
Post by KostaAndreadis @ 12:56pm 07/05/20 | 0 Comments
And sure, anything related to The Last of Us Part II's story has been surrounded by controversy lately, thanks to a number of leaks, but there's no denying the cinematic chops over at Naughty Dog. This looks beautiful, harrowing, bleak, and stunning all at once - a true showcase that makes you wonder just what we're doing getting all excited about next-gen consoles.

From an animation, lighting, and environmental detail perspective - this is next level stuff. And offers up glimpses at what should be a memorable return to the post-apocalyptic lives of Ellie and Joel.



Of the recent controversy and the long road to get to this point, Neil Druckmann Director of The Last of Us Part II, writes.
The last few weeks have been eventful, and with our new release date confirmed and development of The Last of Us Part II complete, we’re now just over a month away from launch on June 19, 2020. It’s a surreal feeling, to say the least. This project represents not only years of hard work and passion from everyone here at Naughty Dog, but the continuation of a journey that began with Ellie, Joel, and each of you about seven years ago. There have been some twists and turns, but we’re so lucky to have had you with us every step of the way.

With The Last of Us Part II out on June 19 for PlayStation 4, both Sony and Naughty Dog are promising "more exciting news as we count the weeks, days, and hours until The Last of Us Part II launches".
Tuesday, 21 January 2020
Post by KostaAndreadis @ 11:58am 21/01/20 | 0 Comments
As per a new Naughty Dog job posting on LinkedIn looking for someone to join the technical team on the development of The Last of Us Part II there's a few surprising details in there related to the PC platform. From NVIDIA to DirectX12 and Vulkan it all sounds like it relates to working on a PC port of some kind.

When it comes to PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 hardware both the CPU and graphics hardware are AMD. This is important to keep in mind when reading the following job requirements.
  • Thorough understanding of current GPU architectures (AMD GCN, NVIDIA CUDA)
  • Experience with DirectX12, Vulkan or other modern graphics or compute APIs

  • The job responsibilities also sound like the role is related to a port by noting that it involves implementing "new and existing rendering techniques". Now, industry jobs are usually vague as to avoid giving away specific game mechanics and platform details but it's hard to look at this and not walk away with the notion that it's about bringing The Last of Us Part II to PC. On the other hand it could be related to an upcoming PlayStation 5 version of the game and Naughty Dog are simply looking for someone skilled in high-end PC game development and are aware of things like NVIDIA RTX raytracing and other tech.

    With the recent report that Horizon Zero Dawn is PC bound, there is a precedent set- even though that game is now a few years old.

    The Last of Us Part II is one of the most anticipated releases for 2020 - for more on the game be sure to check out our hands-on from last year.
    Friday, 27 September 2019
    Post by KostaAndreadis @ 12:57pm 27/09/19 | 0 Comments
    But in a new update Naughty Dog has confirmed that the popular Factions mode from the original The Last of Us will continue at some point. The statement, made via Twitter, notes "you will eventually experience the fruits of our team's online ambition". Hinting at a possible separate in-universe standalone release.

    The campaign in The Last of Us Part II is described by Naughty Dog as the most ambitious project the studio has ever undertaken - as per our preview it is set to be as ambitious and detailed as it is enormous in size and scope. The statement then goes on to point out that the vision for the campaign and the online components essentially diverged.



    And as per above we should expect to see Factions or the evolution of that appear in some form, some time in the future.
    Post by KostaAndreadis @ 01:15am 27/09/19 | 0 Comments
    After spending a few hours with the game, and you can check out our full preview here, Adam 'Griz' Mathew had the chance to sit down with Naughty Dog Lead Animator Almudena Soria to talk about the stunning next-gen like animation found in The Last of Us Part II.

    The result is seamless, with no jarring transitions between character movements in-action or not. And the fact that it's possible without motion capture and scripting every basic gameplay thing or possibility is quite impressive.



    The animation in question can be seen in the gameplay footage seen above.
    Post by KostaAndreadis @ 01:05am 27/09/19 | 0 Comments
    As one of the most anticipated PlayStation 4 games still to be released, The Last of Us Part II has its eyes set on a February 2020 release date. And one of the luckiest of us, Adam ‘Griz’ Mathew, recently had the chance to sit down and spend a few hours as Ellie – and bring you a detailed hands-on preview.

    A snippet.
    I'm one of the few in the world who can tell you how this game feels. How it reacts in the hands of a player who has done his homework and had his mettle tested many times in multiple Grounded difficulty playthroughs. I'm also the guy who can tell you that, wow, this game is harrowing.

    Now I figured I was completely desensitized to violence after 35 years of gaming (and that years of TV radiation had left my genitals withered and useless). However, sections of Part II still floored me like I'd been hit by a Joel Special – that's a thrown brick to the face. Naughty Dog has somehow managed to cranky up the intensity and violence even further than last time. And they've done it with one of the simplest things, naming AI enemies.

    Click Here to Read The Last of Us Part II – On the Bleeding Edge All Over Again