So The Last of Us is out and I can only assume every PlayStation owner has bought the game. It is one of the finest examples of a video game this generation has seen. We gave it an awesome 98%, it really is that good. But what’s next for Sony’s hottest property?
You see, I can’t see where Naughty Dog can go next without watering down all that they have achieved with The Last of Us. I mean, in the game, we got a prologue, and of course the main story and an ending. We lived and breathed the characters of Ellie and Joel. Do I really want to play The Last of Us 2? What I mean by this is that if Naughty Dog were to create a direct sequel, I’m not sure I would be so bothered about it. It could quite easily turn into a Resident Evil franchise which is full of shooting and not much else, Uncharted fell into that trap. Would the introduction of new characters to play solve this issue? No, because they won’t be Joel and Ellie, they will probably be some generic fools. Even Joel’s brother doesn’t have the same enigmatic bad boy charm that Joel has and as a result I couldn’t really care less about him.
So, how about a prequel? Making a game based on the events that happened between the prologue and the main game. That’s 20 odd years of story we don’t know about. I don’t think this would work either as we already know the outcome of the main characters. Meaning that sure, we get to know all about Joel in more detail, and Tess for that matter, but would a game featuring two adults pull at the same heartstrings that Ellie brought to the game, no I don’t think so. And besides, we already know the fate of Tess so…it all kind of seems a bit pointless.
So where can Naughty Dog go. In my opinion, The Last of Us should stay as a one off masterpiece. There is no need to expand on anything as the game was so strongly story led, that all the questions I had have been answered. I feel satisfied that Joel is a liar but for the greater good. I also feel satisfied that I know how it all started and that my imagination can fill in the blanks. Would I be happy to have the same two characters continue their story but in another part of America or the world? Not really, it would mean introducing more characters, or infected just to flesh out the already full bodied story, which is pointless.
Some things are just best left alone, I don’t want to be bored of the characters thanks to mindless and unnecessary sequels. I don’t want the amazing story driven gameplay to turn into another third person shooter series.
As much as I love the characters, I don’t want to see them in a game again. I want to remember them as they were, in one of this generation’s defining and greatest games. Bringing a breath of fresh air to a market that is stale form FPS and cover shooters. And just like the film that inspired the game, The Road.
We don’t need a sequel, this really should be the last of The Last of Us.