What Makes “The Last of Us” Exceptionally Great

Why The Last of Us is Great

Originally released on the Playstation 3 in 2013, The Last of Us (Now The Last of Us Part 1) was a tremendous hit. Though I had heard of it, I didn’t play it until around 2017 when I picked up the remastered version for the Playstation 4. Needless to say the game lived up to the hype. It was the first game I ever completed by myself. This is what made this game stand out against others:

  • Graphics

Even when the game was on the Playstation 3, there was no denying that it was visually stunning. It looked just like a movie, making it entertaining for those playing the game as well as those watching. The attention to detail in every scene of this game is incredibly impressive. 

  • Voice Acting

The voice actors for Joel and Ellie in particular brought this story to life. They are both incredibly talented and were perfectly casted in their roles. 

  • Dystopian

The dystopian genre has been popular for years. As a huge fan of The Walking Dead, this game stood out to me. They have clickers instead of walkers, but the basic premise is the same. In the near future there is a virus that is highly contagious and turns its victims into dangerous zombie-like creatures that must be taken out for the good of the future. This survival concept works very well in a story driven video game. As much as I liked The Walking Dead video games by TellTale, The Last of Us offered more of an open world feel. 

  • Storyline

The storyline has everything. There is the relationship between Joel and Ellie that is constantly developing throughout the game. Joel’s backstory is arguably the most emotional part of the game. I remember crying after just playing the intro and knowing I was in for some real emotional damage. The cutscenes are used intricately and work to push the storyline forward organically, keeping with the movie-like feel. Even the side characters have their own storylines and are fully developed. The high stakes of the storyline and the overarching mission throughout the game add to the captivating nature of The Last of Us. 

  • Gameplay

The gameplay is relatively simple. The shooting mechanics may be difficult if you are new to gaming, but it is something that can be picked up rather quickly. The game allows you to use your own strategy— so you can choose to be stealthy and rarely even use the guns. Though the game feels very open, there are invisible barriers that ensure you continue down the proper path and do not get lost for hours. 

This is an extremely well made game that can be played again and again. I have not played the sequel yet, but now that I own a copy it is on my to do list. With both games and an HBOMax adaptation out, I would highly recommend going back and playing the game that started it all. 

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