The Last of Us – Review
The Playstation 3 has a number of exclusive series which a fan could point to as a means of suggesting why someone should chose the PS3 over another system, but The Last of Us is probably the best reason to own a Playstation 3. Put simply, The Last of Us is an amazing game and as it appears at the end of tha PS3s life cycle, it is also a fitting swan song to one of gaming’s greatest systems.
At the core of the why The Last of Us is so great is the relationship between the two principal characters, Ellie and Joel. Tied into this is the writing; you couldn’t buy into their relationship if the writing wasn’t superb. And it is. While the post apocalyptic story line is arguably derivative, it is saved by some very powerful human moments. From the emotive prolouge to to the powerful ending, The Last of Us’ story is driven by character moments which manage to feel real despite the zombie-like Clickers who inhabit this world with you. And it isn’t just these pivotal game moments that hel to immerse you in the relationship; its also the smaller moments, such as when Ellie randomly decides to tell you a joke. It’s incredibly great stuff, and once you finish the game you will find yourself thinking about many of these moments, all of which helped form part of a bigger, highly satisfying narrative.
Of course, this is a game and ultimately even a game with an amazing story would be worthless if it didn’t play well. Thankfully, the developers of The Last of Us, Naughty Dog, have managed to create a control system that is tight, responsive and easy to use. The game will frustrate you at points, usually during extended firefights with other humans or during stealth sections where you try to avoid hordes of Clickers, but that frustration usually comes about as a result of your own decisions, not because the control system lets you down.
I say usually, though, because there are moments where you will be confused at some of the game’s seemingly arbitrary rules. For instance, the Clickers, you are told, have no sight but have an incredible sense of hearing. So as you sneak past them in dark areas, you do so slowly so at avoid making any noise; so much so that even an errant jump from a small ledge could result in every nearby Clicker descending upon you. And yet at several points during the game the characters had pre-scripted conversations mere meters from Clickers without them reacting to you. Inconsistencies like this served to draw you out of the world, rather than immerse you in it, as the rest of the game does so well.
But this is just a minor complaint in what is an otherwise amazing production. I literally cannot find fault with any other aspect of The Last of Us. From the graphics, which almost seem like they belong on a PS4, to the top-notch voice acting, to the subtle and moving soundtrack, The Last of Us proves that video games can be a form of art.
If you own a Playstation 3, you owe it to yourself to play The Last of Us. It is simply that good.
Final Score: 10 out of 10.