I'll say it now...I really love THE LAST OF US PART II.
|Posted: 25 June 2020 at 12:35am | IP Logged | 1
There. Done. Got that out of the way.
There has been a ton of chatter about this game, rightfully so, since its predecessor, THE LAST OF US, was heralded as one of the best games of the PS3 generation. It had such a reputation to live up to in the intervening years between the original (released in 2013) and now that it was hardly fair to hold it to such a high standard. But fans did.
And then came the "leak" just a couple months ago, the specific contents of which I won't discuss because they spoil the story but are nonetheless important because they explain the backlash. Suffice it to say that what was spoiled sent the anti-SJW crowd into a tizzy. We've seen it on the main board as well as spill onto other boards (namely the TV and Movie threads).
The fever pitch to denounce this game became so high from this crowd that within two hours of it's release, it got an incredible number of negative reviews as compiled by Metacritic even though there was not a chance in hell gamers in America could have experienced more than two hours of gameplay.
That's how ugly a certain segment of the video game community has become. Not a surprise to any of us who went through "gamergate" but that's a whole 'nuther discussion.
So that's the context. The reality is...?
This is a beautiful fucking game. Yes, it's dark. Yes, it's dismal. Yes, it's oppressive. But so was the original. It's a fucking fight for life that is never easy or happy or fun. That's what players celebrated with the original and this sequel ratchets up that same sense of dread and foreboding. It is, at it's beating heart, a take on RESIDENT EVIL and SILENT HILL. And yet this game takes storytelling to a whole other level. This world has consequences for the choices you make. That's not to say that this is a "choose your own adventure" story, but that the main character is forced to make hard choices and we, as an audience/player have to come to grips with that.
There are quiet moments conveyed through cutscene in Seattle if you seek them out. There are fun, playful moments when going through the Wyoming Museum if you take the time to discover them. Or, conversely, you could rush through them all, totally ignoring their importance, just to finish the game. Your choice.
I don't think I'm even halfway through the game even though I've played some 20-odd hours, but that's OK. I'm enjoying the ride. If you only play GTA or can only see video games as achievements to be had or combo-buttons to be pushed, this game ain't for you and, really, you shouldn't be reviewing it from that framework. It's a story and a damn good one at that.