TLOU2 Review Thread

Casual Shinji

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Thank you. That's one of the points I bring up whenever someone tries to argue Joel screwed Humanity, is that the game points out the Fireflies have already killed quite a few people looking for a cure/vaccine and it hasn't resulted in anything so far. There's little reason to believe killing Ellie was going to be the silver bullet they were looking for. And your point about the logistics of the situation further compounds the point.

There's also the unfortunate fact Ellie was unconscious and the fireflies apparently didn't bother to wake her up to ask her if she was okay with dying for potentially no reason.Does she even know that particular detail(I haven't play TLoU2 yet and not sure I will at this point)? Because the fireflies didn't give her a choice in the matter and while Joel did what he did for selfish reasons, he at least gave her the option to be able to make that choice in the future.
The Fireflies haven't killed other people looking for a cure, they've done experiments on people that were infected. Fans like to bring up the tape recording from the hospital at the end of the first game as to why Ellie wouldn't have resulted in a cure, but that tape talks about other test subjects that were infected, not immune. Ellie is likely the first immune person anyone has come across since the outbreak. And by the time Joel wakes up next to Marlene they've run enough tests to know how it is that Ellie is immune - which isn't due to a strange brain chemistry, by the way, but because of a freak mutation in the fungal infection in her brain - and to know that if they remove it they can reverse engineer a vaccine.

And Joel never gave her the option to make that choice for herself in the future, since a) he killed one of the few surgeons who could pull it off, and b) told i.e. lied to Ellie that her immunity meant nothing and wouldn't result in a cure. The reason he lies to her is because he knows she would've died for a cure, and would hate his guts if she found out what he did.
 
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Phoenixmgs

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My take on the story is up.
https://www.escapistmagazine.com/v2...ssage-in-the-last-of-us-part-ii-is-the-point/

Jack and I also discussed at length here.

You brought up a good point about Ellie would likely not be motivated to endanger her life after learning the truth. I guess the recording she hears says the only doctor that could develop a vaccine is dead now but that's really the only doctor within the Fireflies that could do it. The order the scenes are shown makes it so you don't even understand where a character is at during key character decisions. Like when Ellie learns about the lie is well into the Ellie revenge half. That cutscene also reveals that Joel and Ellie weren't on good terms most likely (as it is the most up-to-date info about their relationship though) when Ellie went on her revenge quest. At that point, I even asked myself why Ellie is on this revenge trip when, as far as I know now, she was done with him. It's only at the very end of the game that it's shown that Ellie seems to be ready to just work on mending the relationship. That's not to say you couldn't understand being pissed at someone for killing Joel even if the relationship was at that current point. But that along with her potentially still being a vaccine and the 1st game showing it's dangerous as hell crossing large chunks of land makes going on a revenge trip seem pretty not smart just doing it once let alone TWICE (with then a like a year to contemplate it all unlike the 1st time, which could be written off as a passionate decision and being caught up in the moment at least).
 

Gyrobot

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Thank you. That's one of the points I bring up whenever someone tries to argue Joel screwed Humanity, is that the game points out the Fireflies have already killed quite a few people looking for a cure/vaccine and it hasn't resulted in anything so far. There's little reason to believe killing Ellie was going to be the silver bullet they were looking for. And your point about the logistics of the situation further compounds the point.

There's also the unfortunate fact Ellie was unconscious and the fireflies apparently didn't bother to wake her up to ask her if she was okay with dying for potentially no reason.Does she even know that particular detail(I haven't play TLoU2 yet and not sure I will at this point)? Because the fireflies didn't give her a choice in the matter and while Joel did what he did for selfish reasons, he at least gave her the option to be able to make that choice in the future.
Even if they got the vaccine and logistic solved, it becomes another resource of survival like food and water is for humanity. Imagine the bloodbled over the vaccine and the stakes Fedra will do to take it for their quarantine zones. Scientists will be kidnapped and forced to work under the barrel of a gun to produce it.
 

hanselthecaretaker

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You brought up a good point about Ellie would likely not be motivated to endanger her life after learning the truth. I guess the recording she hears says the only doctor that could develop a vaccine is dead now but that's really the only doctor within the Fireflies that could do it. The order the scenes are shown makes it so you don't even understand where a character is at during key character decisions. Like when Ellie learns about the lie is well into the Ellie revenge half. That cutscene also reveals that Joel and Ellie weren't on good terms most likely (as it is the most up-to-date info about their relationship though) when Ellie went on her revenge quest. At that point, I even asked myself why Ellie is on this revenge trip when, as far as I know now, she was done with him. It's only at the very end of the game that it's shown that Ellie seems to be ready to just work on mending the relationship. That's not to say you couldn't understand being pissed at someone for killing Joel even if the relationship was at that current point. But that along with her potentially still being a vaccine and the 1st game showing it's dangerous as hell crossing large chunks of land makes going on a revenge trip seem pretty not smart just doing it once let alone TWICE (with then a like a year to contemplate it all unlike the 1st time, which could be written off as a passionate decision and being caught up in the moment at least).
Ellie learned about the lie during a flash back two years prior though. I also thought there were different notes in the world of the original game that said as much about a cure being basically a pipe dream, or at least far from a certainty.
 

Phoenixmgs

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Ellie learned about the lie during a flash back two years prior though. I also thought there were different notes in the world of the original game that said as much about a cure being basically a pipe dream, or at least far from a certainty.
I know when everything happened, that doesn't change the fact that at that point in the game (late into Ellie's half) that's the most up-to-date knowledge the player has of the status of Joel and Ellie's relationship. From the start of the game and decently into the revenge trip, you only know how Joel and Ellie are doing based of where we left off in the 1st game. Then, you get the birthday flashback, the Tommy flashback (showing Ellie is questioning things), then the cutscene she learns the truth.

I think getting into the science of the cure and vaccine is missing the point of the game. Without analyzing someone immune, the cure could be a pipe dream. Having to get into the brain of someone to develop a vaccine for anything could be unrealistic as well. Just Ellie's immunity itself could be completely impossible based on the real world inspiration for the disease. The point of the game is what would people do in this very hypothetical situation and not how the situation came to be.
 

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I know when everything happened, that doesn't change the fact that at that point in the game (late into Ellie's half) that's the most up-to-date knowledge the player has of the status of Joel and Ellie's relationship. From the start of the game and decently into the revenge trip, you only know how Joel and Ellie are doing based of where we left off in the 1st game. Then, you get the birthday flashback, the Tommy flashback (showing Ellie is questioning things), then the cutscene she learns the truth.

I think getting into the science of the cure and vaccine is missing the point of the game. Without analyzing someone immune, the cure could be a pipe dream. Having to get into the brain of someone to develop a vaccine for anything could be unrealistic as well. Just Ellie's immunity itself could be completely impossible based on the real world inspiration for the disease. The point of the game is what would people do in this very hypothetical situation and not how the situation came to be.
Yea the ordering of scenes is what I had a big problem with, because while it's impactful at the very end that we know she was going to forgive him and everything comes full circle, I think it would have played a lot better had we:

Spend more time with Ellie and Joel before the big moment happens at the start of the game. See their relationship try to reform, AND then Abby comes in and fucks it all up by killing Joel. After the fact just didn't work like it was intended for me.

I still really like the game and the story for the most part, but I'm a sucker for these dark revenge stories. I think a lot of complaints really are just about how it was structured and that we didn't see enough character moments in this one.
 
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hanselthecaretaker

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Yea the ordering of scenes is what I had a big problem with, because while it's impactful at the very end that we know she was going to forgive him and everything comes full circle, I think it would have played a lot better had we:

Spend more time with Ellie and Joel before the big moment happens at the start of the game. See their relationship try to reform, AND then Abby comes in and fucks it all up by killing Joel. After the fact just didn't work like it was intended for me.

I still really like the game and the story for the most part, but I'm a sucker for these dark revenge stories. I think a lot of complaints really are just about how it was structured and that we didn't see enough character moments in this one.
It’s tough because doing it more linearly might’ve cause its own pacing issues with the story on top of gameplay, and you still need to jump to Abby’s POV and back again. We also don’t know exactly what and how much was cut.
 

stroopwafel

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I stand with my initial impression that this is an absolutely astonishing game. It makes you reflect on your decisions both through gameplay and narrative. I've never seen the two melted so perfectly together. Personally I could empathize with all the characters, including Abby as she wasn't a bad person. At one point during Ellie's revenge quest I was like, for god's sake just stop. I don't know, but I think this is probably the best story with the best characters I've ever experienced in a game.

I also have never seen a game that looks this good. The environments are also dynamic in a way that is simply unbelievable. Gameplay is a bit 'old'; controls a bit stiff for a modern third person shooter but the animation quality is beyond impressive. It's also a good mix of tense shoot-outs, sneaking around and soaking in the atmosphere. Weather effects are also amazing. Luscious nature overtaking the urban landscape everywhere with shroom zombies now feeling like an extension of that nature. Just the overwhelming sense of destruction in general which this game portrays in a much starker light than it's predecessor. Despite settlements and some newfound purpose found here it really felt like humanity was hanging by a thread. Like, completely vulnerable which made the fighting and violence even more harrowing.

Definitely, this game is some next-level stuff. Only criticism I could have on the game is that, atleast for me, it doesn't have much replay value. The gameplay is good, but it's a very structured, guided tour. I don't think the gameplay is very rewarding in isolation, though it is exceptional in combination with the story. But that is really front and center here. I felt most of the time was simply slow walking story exposition, cutscenes and trudging through environments collecting loot. If you don't feel like re-experiencing the story I don't think it would be really fun to replay the game. It's definitely an interactive story experience.

But ofcourse, that doesn't really matter if that one-time playthrough is so memorable and exceptional.
 

hanselthecaretaker

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Fun review. Sounds like the game had no business getting all those 10/10s but does not deserve the hate it is getting either.
The Last of Us Part 2 - A Beautiful Nightmare
I usually get a kick out of his videos, but knew where this review was going when he contrasted the first game’s dead daughter drama to the sequel’s teenage love triangles, as if that’s all there was. He also probably wasn’t exactly going into it with a reasonably open mindset in the first place.

Which highlights my general problem with a lot of YouTuber reviews in general: disingenuity for the sake of laughs and “likes”.
 
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BrawlMan

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Once again, Troy Baker being a dick. Apparently, no one's allowed to criticize the games they are in. It's a AAA industry circle jerk right now.

 
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gorfias

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I usually get a kick out of his videos, but knew where this review was going when he contrasted the first game’s dead daughter drama to the sequel’s teenage love triangles, as if that’s all there was. He also probably wasn’t exactly going into it with a reasonably open mindset in the first place.

Which highlights my general problem with a lot of YouTuber reviews in general: disingenuity for the sake of laughs and “likes”.
Dead daughter in the 1st one disturbs me. When does something cross from being truly good and engrossing drama to manipulation. That one darn near walks a razor's edge. I think it was Seth Rogen trying it out and was obviously conflicted by what he was seeing. From what I've heard, Part 2 triples down with you killing dogs and more.
 

hanselthecaretaker

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Once again, Troy Baker being a dick. Apparently, no one's allowed to criticize the games they are in. It's a AAA industry circle jerk right now.

Guessing it’s the Teddy R. quote mentioned in the latest Polygon piece.

Pretty pompous of him for sure, but he seems to be one who might have an inflatable ego.

As far as the game’s themes go, this article toed the line of being respectfully critical pretty well -

 

CriticalGaming

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I don't wanna go back to harping on Abby's appearance.

But I'm fucking gonna.

This here is a video of the Worlds STRONGEST Woman, and Abby is easily as big if not bigger than her.
A woman who has trained her whole life to be strong as fuck, with the benefits of excessive nutrition, training, and still does not have a body like Abby.

Seeing this basically to me, confirms Abby was originally designed to be trans, it's the only possible reason why she's build like a man. Hell even professional female power lifters and the world's strongest, still retain female features like breasts, hips, butt, none of these things Abby has.

Which leads me to question, if you take away her being trans, why not change her character model too? Surely it couldn't be that hard to edit the model, considering they do it for flashbacks and the prison scene at the end. Hell Abby looks much more like a top female athlete when starving from a pole at the end of the game than her just normal deal.

It honestly has made me realize how much a character's appearance effects my immersion with a game. Like Zarya from Overwatch being a ripped badass doesn't bother me because it makes sense in my mind due to the nature of the character. Lara Croft is a character I love (except in the third game) because her struggles fit her appearance.

I'm beginging to realize why Microtransactions are so successful. Appearances fucking matter. I never cared that much until I'm forced to deal with a character who is so out of place that it becomes bothering.