Is it worth the upgrade?
The Last of Us was one of those rare games that truly captivate gamers not just with its gameplay but also with its story. Made by Naughty Dog, this dark and gritty post-apocalyptic tale pits two unlikely characters in what seems to be one of the most emotional games I have ever played. It was a massive hit when it was released last year (and luckily I got to play it before my PlayStation 3 decided to retire), and it now makes it way to the PlayStation 4 in a ‘Remastered’ edition but is it worth the double dip? Let’s check it out.
These zombies don’t eat brains.
I wouldn’t go much into the story since pretty much most of you have either already played the game but here’s the gist: The story starts in 2013, where a pandemic (that seemingly started from a type of fungus) starts mutating humans into flash-eating creatures. After a sad prologue, we find our protagonist Joel 20 years later, where the pandemic nearly killed most of the humans, with survivors trying to battle the infected and try to lead a normal life.
Joel than meets Ellie, who may hold the cure in ending the spread of the infection. But the catch is that he must ‘deliver’ her to the people who can make a vaccine derived from her blood (or so it seems). The game then takes us through various seasons where the two fight their way to survive not just against the infected but also with other human enemies as well.
It’s seldom that I get engrossed with a game’s storyline since I just mainly play the game and then move on. The Last of Us features some of the best voice acting and music I have experienced – adding more emotion to an already great game. From the simple quips of each of the characters to the emotional cut scenes, the game definitely deserved all the awards it has gotten over the past year.
There’s only one rule: Survive
The Last of Us is mostly played from Joel’s perspective (in third person) and occasionally shifts to Ellie in the latter part of the game. You battle enemies using rifles, shotguns and bows. You can also engage in melee combat using a weapon or your old hands, though the effectiveness of melee combat depends on your enemy (stronger enemies are virtually immune to melee).
Along the way, you would need to scavenger various items to upgrade your weapons and that also include some pills and herbal plants that in turn you can use to upgrade your skillsets. Additionally, there are various collectibles including maps, comics and journals. All of these are accessible from you backpack. These items are scarce, so the gamer you may need to plan ahead on which items you plan on disposing right away from the ones you plan to keep. I played the game on normal mode and was able to finish the campaign in a little over 15 hours.
The Last of Us also feature a multiplayer option, which you can choose Factions and engage in team deathmatches. You can also customize your character with various items that you earn with each win.
Just like the Definitive Edition of Tomb Raider, The Last of Us: Remastered for the PlayStation 4 features updated graphics along with a full 1080p 60 fps gameplay support. It also has all the DLCs released in the past year, including Left Behind, which details the story of Ellie and her best friend Riley weeks before the main game starts.
I honestly thought that the PlayStation 3 version of The Last of Us was already great and it feels that Naughty Dog has pushed the limits of an aging console to deliver the best possible gaming experience. Remastered is even better – detail is more defined, shadows are improved, along with various enhanced textures that add more depth to your surroundings. I honestly can’t imagine how awesome this game can ever look.
The 199 AED price is cheaper than most mainstream PlayStation 4 games, making this a must-have title. The Last of Us is a game that begs to be experienced, again and again I might add. The captivating storyline and the fun (and occasionally scary) gameplay make it one of the best games ever.
A Last of Us movie has also been confirmed and it if they stay true to the spirit of the game, then the hopefully this upcoming movie will be just as awesome.
Editor’s Note: To celebrate the release of the game on the PlayStation 4, Naughty Dog had a one-night only performance called The Last of Us: One Night Live where the voice actors gave live performances from select scenes from the game. Gustavo Santaolalla, who composed the music for the film, also performed the score live for the audience. You can watch the live performance below (skip to 30:23 for the start of the video):