The Last of Us: When Does it Get Better?

Dirty Hipsters

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BloatedGuppy said:
It's not the end of the world, it just feels like a wasted opportunity. The game practically screams for hub-based game play, and you can do that and still deliver a tightly scripted story.
No, it doesn't scream for "hub based gameplay." It REALLY doesn't. The game doesn't take place in a 3 square mile city, it takes place as a cross country journey. The world is big and epic in scope, while the story is small and personal, which makes a great contrast. This wouldn't be possible with "hub based" missions.
 

BloatedGuppy

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Dirty Hipsters said:
No, it doesn't scream for "hub based gameplay." It REALLY doesn't. The game doesn't take place in a 3 square mile city, it takes place as a cross country journey. The world is big and epic in scope, while the story is small and personal, which makes a great contrast. This wouldn't be possible with "hub based" missions.
I disagree. The few bits I've encountered that opened up an area even a LITTLE bit really improved the experience. Naturally this is opinion based, but I think "it wouldn't be possible" is a pretty hefty overstatement, unless you're seriously misunderstanding what I mean by "hub based".

Tentaquil said:
All I read was 'I am bad at this game because I can't shoot everything all the time and win like COD'
Oh absolutely. Bullseye, mate. I'm definitely complaining because I can't "shoot everything all the time" like I do in that popular game series I've never actually played. I'm such a big fan of "shoot everything all the time" games, don't you know.
 

Phoenixmgs_v1legacy

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BloatedGuppy said:
I hate shooting with a controller. I'm sure some of you are pro at it, it feels like trying to swim with winter boots on for me. Sluggishly prodding the cursor around the screen attempting to aim makes me crazy.
I'm sure plenty of others have commented on the game mechanic specifics of TLoU. I've only played the 1st 2 hours and the shooting is OK (Naughty Dog doesn't know how to make a good 3rd-person shooter) and the stealth felt really easy because of the Daredevil-esque hearing ability that lets you see through walls. Anyways, the key to aiming in a shooter is to aim with the free look camera, your cursor should be on the enemy when you hit L1 to shoot. You don't hit L1 and then aim, you aim before hitting L1. Naughty Dog doesn't let you change their sluggish as hell free look camera in any of the Uncharteds or in TLoU and the competitive MP is unplayable for me.
 

Sarge034

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SecretNegative said:
There really should be narrative, but the entire thing turns out to be a red herring since there's more people like Ellie,...
Can you source that because I'm calling bullshit. Nothing in the game says that other than...
when Joel lies to Elli in the car.

BloatedGuppy said:
Flashlight no, I was using the "slow creep" for (presumably) reduced sound. The likeliest problem is me just not fully understanding the stealth mechanics. There are games in which I find them highly intuitive (Thief, DE:HR, hell even BG&E) and games in which I do not (Metro, this one). I don't know whether to blame insufficient in-game feedback, or just a lack of adapability on my part.
It took me forever to realize that the environment is your biggest enemy when you stealth. I would always nudge a bottle or cast a shadow and not realize that is why I broke stealth. Game got so much more intense when I actually figured it out. There is a known glitch that can have enemies spawning behind you or in direct view of you when reinforcements enter an area. I don't know if they fixed this as I haven't plated TLoU for three or four patches.

Fucking bottles! They weren't doing ANYTHING for me. I'd hurl a bottle across the room for a key distraction, and the Clickers would be like "Whatever man, ain't fooling me" and continue jittering slowly in my direction.
This is... odd. Unless the clicker was too far away from the noise or it caught a "glimpse" of you and was already on its way to investigate it should have went to the distraction. I always try to throw it at the feet, but not hitting, of one clicker. Molotovs are cheap, and usually the dying screams of one will attract others into the fire.

But yeah, like I said before if you can't form IRL connections to Elli then the game is kindda meah.
 

Siege_TF

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Pretty sure Shank Mastery or something lets you avoid an instant death from a Clicker (if you have a shank).

Not only did Joel lie at the end, he overdid it in such a manner that I felt was out of character for a normally smooth operator like him (remember: the best/worst lies have a nugget of truth). This is easily enough handwaved by him still being shaken up; it wouldn't surprise me if that last action sequence had him going full 'Charlie's in the trees!'.

Yeah it's story driven, but that story is in the characters' development. It's more of a man vs self than vs man, enviroment, or other so if you can't bond with the characters because the gameplay is too clumsy it's gonna suck.

I personally played with a friend, and we switched controllers when either of us got frustrated.
 

Sarge034

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SecretNegative said:
Eh, turns out if was a rumor spread by some assholes on a forum that misinterepreted a data log, and I didn't question it since it was mention several different times by several different people, or something. Fail by me.

The plot is still a red herring though, since the Fireflies are a bunch of assholes, but that was indeed a failure on my part, sorry about that.
I thought that was the point. Every group is in it for themselves and the Fireflies were supposed to be shown as being just as corrupt as the military and the bandits. The moral point of the game is not "how far would you go to save humanity" but, "is it worth losing your humanity to potentially save humanity?" At least that is what I think it was going for, but that is the beauty of this game. It touches on so many philosophical points that there is intelligent discussion to be had everywhere.
 

genghisKwong

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BloatedGuppy said:
Dirty Hipsters said:
No, it doesn't scream for "hub based gameplay." It REALLY doesn't. The game doesn't take place in a 3 square mile city, it takes place as a cross country journey. The world is big and epic in scope, while the story is small and personal, which makes a great contrast. This wouldn't be possible with "hub based" missions.
I disagree. The few bits I've encountered that opened up an area even a LITTLE bit really improved the experience. Naturally this is opinion based, but I think "it wouldn't be possible" is a pretty hefty overstatement, unless you're seriously misunderstanding what I mean by "hub based".
I disagree about the game screaming to be "hub-based." Joel and Ellie are trying to make a bee-line for the firefly base. They aren't going to be interested in doing missions for people(whom are likely dangerous to begin with), or searching some dilapidated apartments for medicine, or eavesdropping on the Hunter leader for their stockpiles of food or anything like that. Joel and Ellie only want to move forward, not backtrack through a hub. If it doesn't help them get to the fireflies then they wouldn't do it. It just wouldn't do anything to serve the story.

A hub-based game in the setting of TLoU would be great, but that's not what this particular title is about. It would only work if the story isn't what it is.

And also-- what's wrong with "linear" games? Why is a game being "linear" such a toxic word for gaming these days? I don't believe that every game should be open world. Linear games are better when it comes to telling a story. Open world games can also tell stories, but are generally better for experiences.
 

Zhukov

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Oh-ho, you've done it now.

BloatedGuppy said:
So I'm around the part...the booby trapped town part? Does that make sense? Just went through the whole "hanging upside down/booby trap/shooting sequence". I assume there's just one. Although knowing this fucking game there's probably 50 of them.
By that point you've seen the core of what the game has to offer in terms of gameplay. Obviously you get new weapons and stuff further down the line, but it's not about to to suddenly become an open world game or something.

Oh, and there's only one hanging upside down bit.

Some caveats...I hate shooting with a controller. I'm sure some of you are pro at it, it feels like trying to swim with winter boots on for me. Sluggishly prodding the cursor around the screen attempting to aim makes me crazy. I also think the inventory system is appalling, it's some arcane sequence of buttons and d-pad presses and hold downs just to switch a fucking gun. I have no idea how anyone tolerates that. But this is all UI unfamiliarity/system crossover, so I'll minimize the bitching.
Aaaactually... I'm pretty sure some elements of the controls and UI were made deliberately unwieldy or slow.

The aiming, coupled with relatively low ammo supplies, forces you to place you shots with care and turns a guy charging you with a baseball bat into an actual threat rather than a passing nuisance. (The weapon sway can be mitigated and eliminated with upgrades.) Likewise, the inventory means you have to plan what you have on hand and what you store away rather than being able to magically conjure you the contents of you backpack into your hands while in mid punch or pause time Bethesda style to shuffle some potions. If you do want to access the rest of your inventory or whip up a molotov then you need to hide or wait for a quiet moment.

This isn't meant to excuse what you see as a flaw. "Deliberately clumsy is still clumsy so fuck that" is a valid viewpoint, but personally I enjoyed being a regular guy with a gun and a two-by-four rather than a 360-no-scoping super-soldier.

1. It's hyper linear. I thought maybe it was a bit of an open world scrounger, but it's an action set piece corridor runner, much like Tomb Raider.
Uh... yeah. It's a linear game. They're a thing. Not sure what would have led you to believe otherwise. You're still not quite out of Tutorial Town. Later areas have some wriggle room, making "corridor runner" a definite exaggeration but it's unquestionably a linear game.

2. Also much like Tomb Raider, it's a goddam QTE apocalypse. MASH THE BUTTON TO DO THE THING. Whee!
Umm... don't remember many of those. I mean, they're in there, sure, there's a few mash-square-to-fend-off-unfriendly-individual, but "QTE apocalypse" is an exaggeration.

3. I shoot a guy wearing a baseball cap in the face with a 9mm, he doesn't flinch. Damage modeling seems pretty kooky. I also remember someone saying The Last of Us was a game that "properly modeled the consequences of taking a wound" post Tomb Raider. Well, I'm getting shot to fuck and I'm slapping bandages on it and that's that I guess. So far it's pretty gamey.
A headshot with any weapon on any difficulty is a kill on any human not wearing a helmet. Clickers can survive one headshot from weaker weapons. Either the game bugged or you just missed.
Not sure what your guy was talking about regarding "properly modeling blah-de-blah". I suspect they were referring to an injury-related plot event further into the game which is treated rather different to similar events in Tomb Raider. Has no bearing on gameplay.

4. Stealth is pretty garbage. It seems like there's an engine there with the whole listening system that SHOULD support a fun stealth game, but there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to how or why you get spotted. I was getting spotted and shot through walls during one sequence.
Umm... if you're in cover, you don't get spotted. If there's an enemy facing you and you're out of cover or the enemy walks around the cover then you do get spotted. I've done three playthroughs and never had a problem with this.

Enemies don't spot you and open fire instantly. There's an audio indication when you're visible, a sort of rising hum.

I wouldn't recommend using the listen mode. It ruins the fun. It's disabled on harder difficulties.

5. Gunplay is pretty garbage, largely due to A) I hate the controls and B) damage modeling seems off. Yes I realize the first one is my fault. The AI also seems to alternate between being dead eye accurate and brain numbingly stupid, which reminds me of Crysis AI, which was balls.
Adressed controls earlier. Not sure what you mean by "damage modelling".

I found the AI to be pretty good. Impressive range of actions available to human enemies. Although, granted, they're far too quick to go into let's-split-up-and-start-patrolling mode. They also don't seem to think of specifically patrolling the area where they last saw you.

6. Clickers and insta-death for failure. Awesome game mechanic. Makes me want to punch the developer in the dick.
Okay, I can see where you're coming from on this. I never got particularly frustrated, but I can see how some people would. I just learned to deal with them.

There's an upgrade that lets you fend off clicker bites at the expense of a shiv, but I never used it.

7. Throwing distractions seems to work maybe 30% of the time. Half the time there's no noise in-game, and the enemies show no reaction. Bug?
Three playthroughs, never had this happen. I suspect that you're assuming that the enemy's hearing radius is larger than it really is.

So...does it get better? When does it get better?
From you perspective, I don't think it does get any better. What you've played so far is indicative of the rest.

The game is not about to sprout a mouse and keyboard and morph into Stalker.
 

sune-ku

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SecretNegative said:
I disagree, the fireflies are barely established in the slightest, and while it does make sence that the rebel group is morally questionable indeed, we don't actually get to know everything about them, and thus they aren't very interesting. At the end of the day, they're just being there to set up the plot (or the little plot there is) and to produce some mooks for Joel to shoot at in the final stage.

And the whole "man's inhumanity to man" schtick has been played so many goddamn times I'm not exactly in awe that someone has figured out that humans can be quite terrible to eachother.
I feel like I got something completely different from the ending than you and I really loved it because of what it did. It's a shame you saw it in a different way and didn't gain anything from it, but here is my understanding of it:

The Fireflies (which were admittedly vaguely developed) weren't really bad guys at all. If anything they were the closest thing the game had to a good organisation. The establishment went all martial law and are no longer trying to find a solution to the problem, but this group of radicals is desperately trying to save humanity and believe they have the key in Ellie. Turn's out they have to kill her for it to work though, which is the crux of the final act. You have Marlene - the Fireflies leader, who had to look after Ellie when she was younger and is almost a mother to her, and Joel - a father figure who's just been through this crazy ordeal and journey with her.

Marlene decides (and you can hear from her voice recordings that she hates herself for this) that finding a cure is more important than the life of a girl, even one who she has such a close connection with. It's a torment filled, selfless decision, driven by a desire to do the right thing for humanity. Joel on the other hand can't bring himself to let her go, his connection with her is too strong and the entire journey through the game has built up this 'him & her' versus the world attitude that gets you to sympathise. Really though it's a selfish decision - he can't stand the thought of life without her and because of that, he kills Marlene, the scientists, and any Fireflies that cross him, to escape with Ellie.

After all that he lies to Ellie, tells her they couldn't have used her as a cure. Ostensibly to protect her innocence - but really because he wants things to stay the same. Doesn't want her to hate him. He doesn't care about anything except keeping her close to him.

The hammer blow falls when Ellie reveals she'd rather die than live if it could help people (slightly paraphrased) and you realise that if it was her choice, Marlene would have got her way, not Joel. He murdered and lied his way out. It may have been because of love for Ellie, but even a villain can love, and that's exactly what he is.
 

BloatedGuppy

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Zhukov said:
Oh, and there's only one hanging upside down bit.
Thank god.

Zhukov said:
This isn't meant to excuse what you see as a flaw. "Deliberately clumsy is still clumsy so fuck that" is a valid viewpoint, but personally I enjoyed being a regular guy with a gun and a two-by-four rather than a 360-no-scoping super-soldier.
I hear that. I just wish there'd been a better way to model it. Sluggish UI just *feels* bad to me, as a game. Like, it feels crappy to play. It's almost like simulating lag or rubber banding.

Zhukov said:
Uh... yeah. It's a linear game. They're a thing. Not sure what would have led you to believe otherwise. You're still not quite out of Tutorial Town. Later areas have some wriggle room, making "corridor runner" a definite exaggeration but it's unquestionably a linear game.
Okay, I'm getting some flack from the linear lobby in this thread, and I should probably elaborate. I don't think the game should turn into Fallout New Vegas or anything. I was thinking more along the lines of some of DE:HR's city hubs. Make an AREA part of the progression of their journey, but give the player some leeway in terms of how they approach that area. I don't think having J/E rooting around in trash bins for bottle caps for 45 hours would improve the narrative, but I don't like feeling like I'm on rails, either. There has to be a middle ground.

Zhukov said:
Umm... don't remember many of those. I mean, they're in there, sure, there's a few mash-square-to-fend-off-unfriendly-individual, but "QTE apocalypse" is an exaggeration.
There's a fair amount of "hammer button X" moments, which I always find unforgivable, but "QTE apocalypse" was probably an overstatement. I was rather cross with the game when I wrote the OP.

Zhukov said:
A headshot with any weapon on any difficulty is a kill on any human not wearing a helmet. Clickers can survive one headshot from weaker weapons. Either the game bugged or you just missed.
Yeah, it was an unhelmeted human, very early on, and I didn't miss. I hit him square in the lips region, and nothing happened. It was pretty unmistakable, since it took me a good stretch of geological time to swim the cursor up to his face, and he kept popping it out of cover in the same spot. Someone earlier in the thread indicated the ENTIRE head is not mapped for "headshots", which could be the issue.

Zhukov said:
Umm... if you're in cover, you don't get spotted. If there's an enemy facing you and you're out of cover or the enemy walks around the cover then you do get spotted. I've done three playthroughs and never had a problem with this.
Well, what's cover, though? What qualifies as cover? What qualifies as "too much noise"? It wasn't until I was in this thread I heard the first thing about a rising hum, bricks hitting carpets, or that accidentally punting a soft drink can could break stealth. Either I missed a tutorial sequence explaining all this shit, or there wasn't one and TLOU is one of those "Enjoy learning how to swim" games. I've gotten better at managing stealth, although I find stealth sections to be cramped and patrol patterns tight, to the point where I almost invariably get fed up and start shanking people just to get them out of the way, since I'm still not confident eyeballing cover or safe distance.

Zhukov said:
I wouldn't recommend using the listen mode. It ruins the fun. It's disabled on harder difficulties.
It's a bit psychic, but it was the only tool that was immediately intuitive in terms of how stealth worked.

Zhukov said:
I found the AI to be pretty good. Impressive range of actions available to human enemies. Although, granted, they're far too quick to go into let's-split-up-and-start-patrolling mode. They also don't seem to think of specifically patrolling the area where they last saw you.
I still remember a moment in the third XCOM game, Apocalypse, where I had two soldiers flanking a doorway. Cultists kept running through it and dying. There was a pile of bodies in the doorway, and each new cultist had to step over them to fall into the obvious trap. This has happened twice in TLOU. Hardly the end of the world, but I thought it was funny. "OMG they got Joe! And Sam! And Mike! And Tim! I better check out this shadowy alcove alon...ggggrrlrl."

Zhukov said:
Okay, I can see where you're coming from on this. I never got particularly frustrated, but I can see how some people would. I just learned to deal with them.
I saved up my vitamins (really guys, give me less vitamins and make everything cost less) and bought the "shank a clicker" ability, and boy is it fussy. I think I have a flaky controller or it's just REALLY unforgiving, because there's a split second of time you can do it, and then the clicker eats you anyway. I guess it's better than nothing. Shotgun and Hunting Rifle have made Clickers significantly less threatening though. I just wish they'd stop mixing two into a wave o' zombies, so you get the Clicker surprise when you're thumping a regular around the neck and shoulders. They always zoom in on me too. I suspect I'm wearing eau d'protagonist.

Zhukov said:
Three playthroughs, never had this happen. I suspect that you're assuming that the enemy's hearing radius is larger than it really is.
There's only so far I can throw a bottle though, yeah? If you and I were at one end of a gymansium, and I threw a bottle to the other end, you'd hear it. In game it goes "piff" and nothing happens. I've stopped throwing things as far as I can, and started using distractions as molotov bait instead of "distractions" as was suggested earlier in the thread.

Zhukov said:
The game is not about to sprout a mouse and keyboard and morph into Stalker.
DAMN IT!

I actually like the narrative quite a lot, so I am soldiering on. I end each session when the game pisses me off so much I cease wanting to play for a while. Last time this happened was with the Boomer. Fucking bullet sponge. Is there a trick to those guys beyond "shoot em lots"? It took an emptied .45 and emptied shotgun plus my NPC chum shooting him 11,000 times to kill him (I rather suspect the NPC damage isn't counted against his hit points or something).
 

Church185

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BloatedGuppy said:
I actually like the narrative quite a lot, so I am soldiering on. I end each session when the game pisses me off so much I cease wanting to play for a while. Last time this happened was with the Boomer. Fucking bullet sponge. Is there a trick to those guys beyond "shoot em lots"? It took an emptied .45 and emptied shotgun plus my NPC chum shooting him 11,000 times to kill him (I rather suspect the NPC damage isn't counted against his hit points or something).
Fire is your best friend against all types of infected. The first bloater you fight is hard to hide from because of how he is introduced, but they are quite blind just like the clickers. Bloaters encountered later in the game can be bottle/molotov cheesed, and eventually you'll come across a flamethrower.
 

Casual Shinji

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BloatedGuppy said:
I actually like the narrative quite a lot, so I am soldiering on. I end each session when the game pisses me off so much I cease wanting to play for a while. Last time this happened was with the Boomer. Fucking bullet sponge. Is there a trick to those guys beyond "shoot em lots"? It took an emptied .45 and emptied shotgun plus my NPC chum shooting him 11,000 times to kill him (I rather suspect the NPC damage isn't counted against his hit points or something).
Fire.

It's the best weapon against Bloaters. It'll usually take atleast two molotovs to take one out, but there's always a possibility for one to walk through the area that's still burning making it catch fire again. If played clever or by simple luck, you can sometimes take out a whole horde of infected with just a bottle and a molotov -- Many times other infected will get drawn by the noise and just walk right into the fire patch on the floor. Fire also stunlocks any enemy, even Bloaters.

You can try shooting the somewhat glowing mushroom protrusions on it's body to stop it from throwing spore bombs. But these guys move so erratically that that's not the best strategy, especially if you find the aiming frustrating.
 

Casual Shinji

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Church185 said:
Bloaters encountered later in the game can be bottle/molotov cheesed, and eventually you'll come across a flamethrower.
That flamethrower totally breaks any infected encounter from then on though. With that puppy, what were previously highly dangerous creatures are mitigated to mere pests. I don't even pick it up anymore.
 

Church185

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Casual Shinji said:
That flamethrower totally breaks any infected encounter from then on though. With that puppy, what were previously highly dangerous creatures are mitigated to mere pests. I don't even pick it up anymore.
I don't particularly like using the flamethrower either, the range on it is terrible, but I thought I would throw that nugget of information out there for someone who is clearly frustrated with the combat in the game. Stealth/Arrow and Bottle/Molotov/Nail Bomb are my bread and butter methods of making it through that game alive on harder difficulties.
 

Zhukov

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BloatedGuppy said:
Zhukov said:
Uh... yeah. It's a linear game. They're a thing. Not sure what would have led you to believe otherwise. You're still not quite out of Tutorial Town. Later areas have some wriggle room, making "corridor runner" a definite exaggeration but it's unquestionably a linear game.
Okay, I'm getting some flack from the linear lobby in this thread, and I should probably elaborate. I don't think the game should turn into Fallout New Vegas or anything. I was thinking more along the lines of some of DE:HR's city hubs. Make an AREA part of the progression of their journey, but give the player some leeway in terms of how they approach that area. I don't think having J/E rooting around in trash bins for bottle caps for 45 hours would improve the narrative, but I don't like feeling like I'm on rails, either. There has to be a middle ground.
Uhhyyeahnooyeummmambivalent.

On the one hand, I'm a fan of the Deus Ex school of level design with a linear game made up of semi-open levels. It seems to like a best-of-both-worlds deal.

On the other hand, the city hubs in Human Revolution were the worst part of that game for me. They completely threw the pacing out the fucking window in favour of making me trek back and forth across the same city block to perform mostly irrelevant oddjobs.

At the end of the day I don't think it would have fit with the brutal apocalyptic road trip structure of TLoU. The game didn't need hub based side quests. It really, really didn't.

I do not consider "linear" to be a dirty word. Most if not all of my favourite game are linear. Yes, there is such as thing as too linear. For me that point is when my actions as a player feel scripted and the game raps me across the knuckles for daring to deviate. I do not think TLoU ever crossed that line.

Well, what's cover, though? What qualifies as cover? What qualifies as "too much noise"? It wasn't until I was in this thread I heard the first thing about a rising hum, bricks hitting carpets, or that accidentally punting a soft drink can could break stealth. Either I missed a tutorial sequence explaining all this shit, or there wasn't one and TLOU is one of those "Enjoy learning how to swim" games. I've gotten better at managing stealth, although I find stealth sections to be cramped and patrol patterns tight, to the point where I almost invariably get fed up and start shanking people just to get them out of the way, since I'm still not confident eyeballing cover or safe distance.
Cover is... being behind something. I never found that hard to judge. If it helps, your character's animation will reflect when you are "officially" is cover. His stance changes a bit and he'll lean into the cover object or place a hand against it.

I found those other elements pretty intuitive. You kick a can, it makes a noise and the clickers come a runnin'. Tutorializing that would be like a shooter tutorializing the fact that having a poorly thrown grenade bounce off a doorway and land at your feet is a bad thing.

Incidentally, were you trying to be stealthy in a non-lethal fashion? I've never actually tried that. If nothing else, it always seemed more fitting to Joel's character and to the setting to kill everything in the way.

I still remember a moment in the third XCOM game, Apocalypse, where I had two soldiers flanking a doorway. Cultists kept running through it and dying. There was a pile of bodies in the doorway, and each new cultist had to step over them to fall into the obvious trap. This has happened twice in TLOU. Hardly the end of the world, but I thought it was funny. "OMG they got Joe! And Sam! And Mike! And Tim! I better check out this shadowy alcove alon...ggggrrlrl."
Well, yeah. I'm pretty sure that's possible in almost every stealth game ever made. The only one I've seen where it wasn't was, funnily enough, Splinter Cell: Conviction. After you took out a couple of them, enemies would stop coming for you, back up a bit and stand ready looking in the direction they last saw you.

I saved up my vitamins (really guys, give me less vitamins and make everything cost less) and bought the "shank a clicker" ability, and boy is it fussy. I think I have a flaky controller or it's just REALLY unforgiving, because there's a split second of time you can do it, and then the clicker eats you anyway. I guess it's better than nothing. Shotgun and Hunting Rifle have made Clickers significantly less threatening though. I just wish they'd stop mixing two into a wave o' zombies, so you get the Clicker surprise when you're thumping a regular around the neck and shoulders. They always zoom in on me too. I suspect I'm wearing eau d'protagonist.
Oh, that reminds me, save your shotgun ammo for infected and clickers in particular and always have it accessible in their areas. Don't use your shells against humans. You probably figured this out on your own, but yeah... there ya go.

There's only so far I can throw a bottle though, yeah? If you and I were at one end of a gymnasium, and I threw a bottle to the other end, you'd hear it. In game it goes "piff" and nothing happens. I've stopped throwing things as far as I can, and started using distractions as molotov bait instead of "distractions" as was suggested earlier in the thread.
If I wanted to get pedantic I'd point out that I might well disregard a distant noise coming from one gymnasium's length away, but a sudden noise from ten feet away is definitely going to make me turn to look.

I actually like the narrative quite a lot, so I am soldiering on. I end each session when the game pisses me off so much I cease wanting to play for a while. Last time this happened was with the Boomer. Fucking bullet sponge. Is there a trick to those guys beyond "shoot em lots"? It took an emptied .45 and emptied shotgun plus my NPC chum shooting him 11,000 times to kill him (I rather suspect the NPC damage isn't counted against his hit points or something).
Burn 'em.

Molotovs do a number on Bloaters. Nail bombs aren't half bad either. After that, yeah, shoot him a lot, preferably with weapons upgraded for armour piercing. Friendly NPCs do inflict damage, but it's heavily reduced.

Other miscellaneous tips:
- Hard difficulty is best difficulty. Anything less is for babies that don't appreciate challenge and scarcity.
- You want the weapon stability and health upgrades more than you want any of the others. In fact. you don't really want the others at all.
- Don't bother upgrading the 9mm and snub-nosed revolver.
- At some point you will find a home made flamethrower. It's essentially useless against humans due to tiny range but will turn infected encounters into minor speedbumps. If you wish to preserve the challenge then you might want to not pick it up.
- Meleeing someone with a brick is a noisy insta-kill. Meleeing with a bottle is a stun, allowing you to use the subject as a human shield. Clickers can be bricked to death, but the timing is brutal.
- Human shields are great. Grabbing one will cause a lull in proceedings, long enough for you to re-position, and gives you at least one free shot. You can also bluff it out with an empty weapon.
- The brick-o-bludgeon is extremely powerful. Throw the brick or bottle to stun, then charge and melee. Insta kills basically anything. This was my bread and butter technique.
- At some point you will get a weapon called the 'Diablo'. Upgrade it to high heaven. Armour piercing and capacity in particular. You'll be glad you did on the final level.
- The bow is an insta-kill with a bodyshot on regular infected or unarmoured humans if they are unaware of you and the arrows have a decent chance of being recoverable. However, it insta-kill clickers only with a headshot. Given how clickers have a nasty habit of erratically moving their heads, it's generally not worth using the bow on them unless they're dormant. Even then, you need to watch they head movements carefully.
 

BloatedGuppy

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Zhukov said:
On the other hand, the city hubs in Human Revolution were the worst part of that game for me. They completely threw the pacing out the fucking window in favour of making me trek back and forth across the same city block to perform mostly irrelevant oddjobs.
Well, I meant the spirit of them more than the actuality of them. There's been a few moments in TLOU where areas open up a bit and I can ransack houses for phat lewts, and the game feels a bit more properly post-apocalyptic when that happens. They could load that shit up with more lore, beef up the item/scrounging game. It just feels like it would make the experience richer. I'm also feeling really bitchy about Games-On-Rails post Tomb Raider. At least this game doesn't have that games collection of loathsome cardboard cutouts as a supporting cast.

Zhukov said:
I do not consider "linear" to be a dirty word. Most if not all of my favourite game are linear.
Mine too, but post apocalyptic means scavenging and exploring to me. It always has, and likely always will. It feels hard baked into the setting.

Zhukov said:
Cover is... being behind something. I never found that hard to judge. If it helps, your character's animation will reflect when you are "officially" is cover. His stance changes a bit and he'll lean into the cover object or place a hand against it.
Good to know.

Zhukov said:
I found those other elements pretty intuitive.
It's possible I've just not played stealth games in this vein before. As I said elsewhere, I'm used to games like Thief, or HR, where the game is like "You in shadows, bro" and doesn't leave it up to guesswork. I never heard the music sting that clued me into the fact I was getting seen, so the "You've been seen" alarm was always getting shot, or getting bungholed by Clickers.

Zhukov said:
Incidentally, were you trying to be stealthy in a non-lethal fashion?
YES.

Zhukov said:
Well, yeah. I'm pretty sure that's possible in almost every stealth game ever made. The only one I've seen where it wasn't was, funnily enough, Splinter Cell: Conviction. After you took out a couple of them, enemies would stop coming for you, back up a bit and stand ready looking in the direction they last saw you.
It's not a big deal, I realize AI is limited. It's part of the old "game play story disconnect" that becomes more grating as game stories become more intricate and lifelike. It's more immersion breaking because things are more immersive. And as games trade more and more on immersion as a primary selling point, it becomes more of an aggravation.

Zhukov said:
Oh, that reminds me, save your shotgun ammo for infected and clickers in particular and always have it accessible in their areas. Don't use your shells against humans. You probably figured this out on your own, but yeah... there ya go.
No worries there. I am a hoarder. I recall at the end of Ultima VII I had a bag FULL of glass swords, potions, powerful scrolls, wands, and other consumable doo-dads. I'd get in tough fights and think "Ooo, I better not use that glass sword, I'll need that later!". Then the game was over and I never used any of it. This is how I play games.

Zhukov said:
Molotovs do a number on Bloaters. Nail bombs aren't half bad either. After that, yeah, shoot him a lot, preferably with weapons upgraded for armour piercing. Friendly NPCs do inflict damage, but it's heavily reduced.
I was out of Molotovs at the time due to Dances With Clickers, but I'll keep it in mind that it's good to have one in reserve.

Zhukov said:
Hard difficulty is best difficulty. Anything less is for babies that don't appreciate challenge and scarcity.
I am on Normal. I wanted to play on Survivor because that sounded fun, but opted for Normal. As I'm still having mild to extreme discomfort with the input method as a Mouse/Keyboard user, I expect my "Normal" is akin to Hard+.

Zhukov said:
You want the weapon stability and health upgrades more than you want any of the others. In fact. you don't really want the others at all.
I've been saving for the 2nd Shiv upgrade. The one where Shivs stop breaking so much. Use a fucking KNIFE, guy. Jesus.

Zhukov said:
Don't bother upgrading the 9mm and snub-nosed revolver.
I upgraded the 9MM a tiny bit. Just made the clip bigger. Most of my upgrades were to the shotty and Hunting Rifle.

Zhukov said:
The bow is an insta-kill with a bodyshot on regular infected or unarmoured humans if they are unaware of you and the arrows have a decent chance of being recoverable. However, it insta-kill clickers only with a headshot. Given how clickers have a nasty habit of erratically moving their heads, it's generally not worth using the bow on them unless they're dormant. Even then, you need to watch they head movements carefully.
I was wondering why anyone would use a bow when you have the Rifle. Does it stealth kill? Is there arrow arc? I've been taking to headshotting Clickers from a safe distance with the Hunting Rifle, and I got the long-gun upgrade so I could quick-swap between it and the Shotgun.
 

Zhukov

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BloatedGuppy said:
No worries there. I am a hoarder. I recall at the end of Ultima VII I had a bag FULL of glass swords, potions, powerful scrolls, wands, and other consumable doo-dads. I'd get in tough fights and think "Ooo, I better not use that glass sword, I'll need that later!". Then the game was over and I never used any of it. This is how I play games.
Heh. Yeah, I do that too. I hoard stuff, then I get annoyed when I max out my inventory and can't collect even more stuff that I'll never bring myself to use.

If you're playing TLoU in that fashion on normal, I'd guess you'll find your self maxing out the inventory at the end of the next city. On survivor difficulty I generally find myself bumping against the limits by the game's halfway point.

It was nice to see a game, and a big budget AAA game at that, attempting to involve genuine scarcity. Some of my favourite moments involved going into fights with nothing but three bullets, a lead pipe and a brick. However I think they could have taken it further.

I was wondering why anyone would use a bow when you have the Rifle. Does it stealth kill? Is there arrow arc? I've been taking to headshotting Clickers from a safe distance with the Hunting Rifle, and I got the long-gun upgrade so I could quick-swap between it and the Shotgun.
Yeah, bow is silent. Good for thinning out the numbers before sneaking in or going balls out.

Oddly enough, a clicker taking an arrow in the head and going down thrashing and chittering will not alert his ostensibly sound-sensitive friends, but a missed arrow shattering against a wall will result in an instant clicker convention.

Also, the recoverable ammunition is great on the harder difficulties.
 

BloatedGuppy

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Zhukov said:
Oddly enough, a clicker taking an arrow in the head and going down thrashing and chittering will not alert his ostensibly sound-sensitive friends, but a missed arrow shattering against a wall will result in an instant clicker convention.
I snuck through a house full of Clickers recently. My AI companions were bumping off walls and what not but otherwise creeping along with me. We got out, and we'd gone like 5 feet and suddenly they're cheerfully shouting to one another. I'm like...guys...the Clickers are still RIGHT there...