E3 2013 is now in the books, which means it’s time for people to play the games that are on the shelf today rather than simply talk about the games coming to the shelf tomorrow. With that in mind, Sony and Naughty Dog have released The Last of Us for PS3. Naughty Dog is best known for its Uncharted, Jak and Daxter, and Crash Bandicoot franchises, but The Last of Us seems to be on a path toward equal greatness.
The Last of Us takes players on a journey of survival in a world radically transformed by a pandemic spread by the cordyceps virus that has ravaged humanity for 20 years. The gritty game explores the depths of humanity through main characters Joel and Ellie, whose journey is rife with emotionally charged moments as the narrative centers on themes of survival, loyalty, love and redemption.
Joel, a hardened survivor, is tasked to carry out a job smuggling Ellie, a young but highly capable girl. Joel must accompany Ellie outside the military quarantine zone and deliver her to a group known as the Fireflies. In a world bound by scarcity and limited resources, strategy is an essential component of surviving the harsh realities of the world against other ruthless survivors and any infected humans that have been taken over by the cordyceps virus.
The introduction of weapon crafting, scavenging, listen mode and stealth are combined to showcase the moment-to-moment gameplay. Survival hinges on combat scenarios that are unpredictable and challenges players to approach gameplay with completely new conventions.
Extending the single-player campaign, The Last of Us offers an unconventional and deep multiplayer campaign, which holds true to the central theme of survival and protecting one’s own. Within the multiplayer mode called “Factions”, is a Meta game that fully embodies the single player premise, where players choose to ally with either the Hunters or the Fireflies to grow and support their own Clans as a means of survival. Teammates must band together to endure in the two game modes – Survivors (Elimination) and Supply Run (Four-versus-Four) which can both be played across seven different maps.