Fun or Shun is making a surprise comeback! In this feature, GamerSushi editors take a look at an upcoming game and give their thoughts on whether or not it will be worth your time to play. We’ve also done this with Dishonored and Deus Ex: Human Revolution. This time, we’re giving Naughty Dog’s upcoming survival action adventure The Last of Us a litmus test.
It’s kind of amazing this is even up for debate, but after some of the recent blockbuster misses, anything can happen. The Last of Us is made by Naughty Dog. There, all done. Oh, you need more? Naughty Dog made Uncharted. Still not convinced? Well, try this on: While Naughty Dog’s B-team was working on Uncharted 3 and breaking the combat perfection of Uncharted 2, the A-team, who made Uncharted 2, was hard at work on The Last of Us.
We all remember the cinematic intensity of Uncharted 2, the great set-pieces and the stellar voice acting. The Last of Us appears to have all of that, but with a post-apocalyptic flavor brought on by some weird fungus that infects people, turning them into horrible looking creatures. Add to that the less-than-honorable humans who won’t hesitate to kill you for your supplies, throw in a dash of survival horror and a unique AI companion and suddenly, The Last of Us looks like a harrowing experience that wil leave you breathless. Count me in.
All of Anthony’s points are good. I can’t even argue with them, really. But I’m noticing a certain big title missing in his enthusiasm, and that would be Uncharted 3, Naughty Dog’s arguably disappointing and most recent effort. I have no doubt that the Last of Us will probably be a pretty good thing, but a couple of things give me pause.
For one, didn’t we just do a poll about zombie enemies being lame? I was more excited about Last of Us at its first showing, when the idea of facing off against crazed (and somewhat sympathetic) Walking Dead-type human survivors instead of weird fungus people packed more emotional punch. Two: in terms of story and cinematic direction, Bioshock Infinite will surely have spoiled me to whatever Naughty Dog has ready in that department, and Walking Dead surely has it beat in the surrogate-father-in-a-zombie-wasteland feels department. And three: my love of Tomb Raider’s shooting and platforming mechanics have outshined even Uncharted 2 in my mind.
My verdict? Shun on day one. I’d be crazy to shun longer than that. After that, I’ll probably get it and love it.
Verdict: Shun (on day one)
The other guys already brought this up, but my only sticking point about Last of Us is Uncharted 3. It may be unfair to be this hesitant about a game because of a studio’s last less-than-stellar release, but I really disliked Uncharted 3. Like, absolutely hated it.
That said, Last of Us looks like a complete departure from Uncharted 3 in terms of both combat and traversal. You’re not a Malcolm Reynolds look-alike hopping around dying in trial and error combat, but rather a grizzled dude struggling to survive against other down-on-their-luck survivors, using your wits to gain the upper hand. That, coupled with the strangely beautiful scenery of post-apocalyptic America and you’ve got yourself a sale.
And there are our takes. What do you guys think? Are we crazy? Is The Last of Us GOTY material? Or is it going to be awful? Let’s talk about it.