The Last of Us Part II, henceforth The Last of Us 2, is looking likely to be gearing up for a 2019 release and given that previous Naughty Dog games have targeted a summer window, we might not have long to wait.
Why should I care?
The Last of Us, released in 2013, is regarded as one of the greatest games ever made. It netted over 200 Game of the Year awards, earned a Metacritic score of 95 from 98 critics, and shipped 17 million copies across the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4, making it one of the 50 best-selling video games of all time.
Directed by Neil Druckmann and the Naughty Dog team in California, it was a critical and commercial success, and despite a pitch-perfect ending, fans soon started clamouring for more.
Well, in December 2016, a successor was revealed to be in the works.
What is The Last of Us 2 about?
A parasitic fungus – the Cordyceps Brain fungus – has spread across the United States, taking people as hosts, and stripping them of their ability to be human. Aggression is commonplace.
The sequel takes place five years after the events of the first, with a focus on Ellie, the young girl from the first game, who is now an adult.
Naughty Dog has said that if the theme of the first game was ultimately “love” (the blossoming relationship between a surrogate father and a child) then this time around, the theme is “hate”. Sombre indeed.
If you’re a Last of Us devotee, you know the original story ended on a spectacular mic drop, and by calling the sequel Part II, it sounds as if we’re going to get a continuation of the original story, with returning cast members, and direct answers to questions posed as the credits rolled on the first game.
A screenshot confirms the militia group known as the Fireflies return; the ramshackle road sign bears their distinctive insignia, which you can take a look at in the snap below.
When is The Last of Us 2 release date?
A release date has not been confirmed but multiple industry experts are pointing to a 2019 release date. Development on the game started in 2014, and a five-year development window is typical for a game of this scope.
How old is Ellie in The Last of Us 2?
Ellie is nineteen in the sequel. One scene from the electric E3 demo shows her slow-dancing with a female partner, then sharing a kiss with the unnamed woman. Expect mature themes in abundance.
Where is The Last of Us 2 set?
Reports indicate the game starts in Jackson, Wyoming. Eagle-eyed fans have also been able to work out, from a few short gameplay videos, that at least a part of the game is set in Seattle, Washington - a fact that was confirmed by game director Neil Druckmann.
But that’s probably not all. As we learnt in Ellie and Joel’s first outing, you don’t settle down in one place for too long, not when you’re being stalked by infected.
Will The Last of Us 2 have infected?
The antagonists we’ve seen in screenshots and videos have all been human so far, but it wouldn’t be a Last of Us game if there weren’t a few shambling clickers to contend with. Expect new versions to give an added challenge. Naughty Dog have also dangled the carrot that infected combat is getting an overhaul. Colour us intrigued.
Is The Last of Us 2 player?
No co-op 2-player mode has been mentioned but do expect the game to have multiplayer.
Will Joel be in The Last of Us 2?
Yes, Joel is expected to feature in The Last of Us 2, but according to reports at E3 2018, Joel will not be a playable character. That could just be a case of Naughty Dog keeping their cards close to their chest of course. Nonetheless, expect Ellie to be the central focus this time around.
As Ellie is smaller and lighter than her male counterpart, she won’t be able to absorb as much damage. Stealth will be a priority and Ellie can now jump, adding a layer of verticality to combat. Jumping, strangely, wasn’t possible in the first game.
Is The Last of Us 2 on Xbox?
No, the game will be a PS4 exclusive, though expect the game to be remastered and upgraded for the PS5 when Sony’s new console launches. Naughty Dog did the same thing when they ported the original Last of Us from the PlayStation 3 to the PlayStation 4 in 2014.
Excited? Stay tuned for more on The Last of Us II and other games coming out in 2019. We’ll be posting more about one of 2019’s most anticipated games as we get it.
All images sourced from NaughtyDog.com
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