The Last of Us has real heart, but not much else


Hm. Sorry. Let me answer to the question "WHY it has blablabla" with two words: User opinions.

I clearly can't state why each and everyone likes it, because the reason is different for everyone.

Alright, let's do that.

"Horrible AI that bumps through enemies all the time" - What do you mean? Invisible Friendly AI? It was a Naughty Dog decision, that has not changed in these few days I last answered to that.

If you didn't mean that, please specify what do you mean.




I see a trend with this website and this so-called self-proclaimed "reviewer" named Tom Chick. He always posts his reviews very late after many other reviews are posted, usually on a highly-acclaimed titles... then starts bashing away at it with his limited point of view and extreme bias. He tries mighty hard to find something to complain about, and focuses on it so much that his review tells me nothing about the game. I only read whatever he wants to complain about.

I see nothing in the regards of technical details or well-explained linings of the actual gameplay itself. It's like as if his reviews assume that anyone who reads his "reviews" should have already played the game or something. Or better yet, his "reviews" just seem like a desperate response to other more detailed, objective, and positive reviews in his desperate attempt to garner more attention by deliberately putting a low score that sticks out like a sore thumb on Metacritic. He knows that by doing this, it will generate traffic. Maybe he doesn't care about his website hits, but he sure seems full of himself, wanting as many people's attention to read whatever blabbering empty of any objective analysis of a video game that he pretends to "review."

He did the exact same thing with Bioshock Infinite. I read his "review" for that game before I played it. Reading his "review" gave me nothing. It told me nothing about it. It all just seemed like someone making a blog, like any fool with an internet can do, incessantly complaining about one or two things and hammering at it to death. Same thing here. Absolutely useless and reading this "review" didn't tell me anything I wanted to know about this game before I make up my mind on whether to buy and play it.

I don't have any issues with Tom Chick's way of scoring games. What bugs me about his writings is his lack of details, blatantly obvious intent for desperate attention, and his bias that results in his writings that focuses way too much on whatever he decided he didn't like, at the expense of the very details I want to read about from anything that is labeled as a "review."

One can only wonder why this guy's writings, let alone this whole sorry excuse of a website, is even listed in Metacritic.

Thanks Tom Chick, for telling me absolutely nothing.


"Chick's reviews are no stranger to controversy as he has been an outspoken critic of what he calls the "7–9 rating scale" at some game review sites,[11] and due to occasional game reviews which were widely considered to be different from the main, such as his >>harshly critical<< review of Deus Ex of which he said "I'd say it's only 90% bad." in a June 2000 review."

Harshly critical.

That's been proven/noticed. Fully.


You thought the guard flashlight scene was scripted? I felt it was anything but - sure dodging vision cones has been done before as a game mechanic, and so I thought 'Fuck it, I'm gonna take this game on' and I was able to fight my way through the area, using a brick as my principle weapon of all things. I found it refreshing that I could make my own choice with a stereotypical game mechanic, and make my own way through the environment, as I chose. I certaintly wasn;t forced into taking any specific actions like was implied, and although this segment is linear (you do have to sneak out of Boston QZ in a certain direction to get to a set location after all) I really didn't find anything to comlain about. I enjoyed the segment greatly actually, and even though fighting was hard, I found it a lot of fun, being able to see how the AI reacted in the dark. I appreciated this more so even on my second play-through on hard difficulty, where the enemies started search patterns to try and find me after I ducked in and out of hiding.


You are stating that the game's gameplay is sub-par as if it is a fact, whe you should be owning that as your opinion - and I am curious to know what you actually did and didn''t like about the gameplay, over such a generic statement.

I personally loved the gameplay - the simple puzzles were underwheling intentionally, as the dialogue provided the real puzzle - trying to understand and learn more and more about your characters, and what exactly has happened to the world around you. That is the true puzzle of teh game, and in my opinion integral to the gameplay, as so much of it is geared around you learning things tangentially. E.g. finding mpas and missives from other survivors, spotting evidence of spores or even recent blood to indicate presence of the game's various enemy elements. The environment holds all sorts of keys and clues to question the game makes educated palyers ask - what happened to the human population, the government, even the millions of people who would have been infected at the outbreak. and where they've all gone now. While it isn't the self directed story of games like Heavy Rain, the world contains puzzles beyond just the mechanics ones and this, to me is as integral a part of the way you play the game as the combat.

And now on the combat I found this a refreshing and yet stark reminder of the true brutality of violence (and the game even makes a couple of little critiques of video game violence within itself). The melee combat is hard and feels very ehavy - you always have a great sense of your character, and I found that I was very concious of the fact that Joel was a full grown adn yet late middle-aged man. And the fighting wasn't scripted - playing any Call of duty campaign there will always be a scene where you grapple with an enemy over a gun or knife, but in The Last of Us grappling with someone can play out differently each time. joel reacts to the environment around him, he will bash his enemies on corners of tables or against teh nearest wall, or even with a brick if you've picked one up. Further more, you can hold people hostage with a gun to their head, but if you give them enough time they will try to disarm you or get free. These are the elements I enjoyed msot of the melee system. Granted, looking at it from an outside perspective, the amount of strangling seems repetitive, but while in gmae it doesn't feel like that at all, and perhaps this is the gameplay's best strength, that it breaks up all the fighting and slow exploration scenes, such that I never felt it was repetitive or boring with each one, and the crafting system was most enjoyable for myslef, being a big RPG fan. I was always eager to find the next weapon upgrade and try out my new gun or pipe in the next fight.
Which brings em to teh gunfighting - I greatly enjoyed the gunfighting mechanics. Againt the infected you have to be quick and yet aim well because they rush and mob you. If you are force to reload, you are generally in a tough spot. Against human Ai, the fights are intensely strategic. You can try and sit in vocer and shoot out with the nemeies - but this is not how you are supposed to play the game. With such limited ammo being a by design (if not entirely realistic) and the enemy AI trying to suppress and flank you if you try to straight up fight them, much of the oputcome is determined by planning and by surprise. it is possible to wait for the eneies to reload then rush them, laying bombs in wait as traps, or even sniping out stragglers. There area just so many possibilites, that I never feel bored when approaching a new fight - every one is different, and while enemies usually wait or patrol specific areas, once you engage them they will actively search for you across the netire available map - opening up a lot of environment for you to play with, if you use it well. The only falw I really had with the gun combat (other than my ability aim using any console controller XD) was the fact that your AI companions never run out of ammo. I will aslo grant that while it looked silly at times, when Ellie or others wouldn't be reacted to by the enemy I feel this was nessecary as the engine could not process perfect decision making for the allied AI when you could stealth around so dynamically. thus them not being detected was a relief as opposed to the nuisance them always ruining your stealth attempts would have been.

Sorry for such a lengthy and unwieldy post, but these are my thoughts on the gameplay and I respectfully disagree with those who have criticized the thrid person shooter mechanics as generic - for they play and fee anything but in The Last of Us.


Do the Illuminati still exist too?


Well said.


... Wow. I don't agree with him either, but that level abuse (any abuse at all to be honest) is uncalled for. Sure he's insulting a game that you, like me, love and have invested in, and I know that it feels offensive personally, but just remember it's his loss for not being able to see in it and get out of it what we do.


Agreed whole-heartedly, although I'd give it a 9.5/10.

I am sucker for a good story and I have actually loathed games of teh past decade for the sheer number of crap ones. My favourite games that predate The Last of Us are Final Fantasy VII and The Legend of Zelda (the 1st through to Marjora's Mask). All of these are from an era where neither graphics, Ai interactivity or even gameplay were as advanced as now, and yet their simple story driven style was more immersive to me than any others. I've played since (until TLOU). Sure I find games like Mariokart; Monaco: What's Yours is Mine; and Fire Emblem: Awakening (to name those games that gregg did that I have played) but while these are all fun they are hardly immersive. Sure, their gameplay is each different and fun, and I will pick them up when I have a spare hour to kill gladly. However, when the weekend comes round and I have a lot of time to myself, these games don't stay on my mind. I go back to the deep, immersive games like TLOU which draws me in again and again (on my third play through now trying to find everything, not to mention the time spent on its fantastic multiplayer).

So I think people like gregg criticizing the game, and observing the style and grenre of games they prefer should have known, first and foremost, they wouldn't enjoy the type of game TLOU is, jsut from the hype alone;
Secondly, should not call a game bad, talk down on the opinions of people who disagree and claim that reviewers who disagree are biased or paid off, all because they are predisposed against the kind of stylistic choices the developers made in creating the game, nad both fitting it into and making it's own mark on the (Zombie/)Horror/Survival genre;
And finally should learn that reviewing something is about judging it on its merits, not how it did not match up to their expectations. Because frankly, those who assume make an 'ass' out of 'u' and 'me' and it seems far too many people were assuming this game would be exactly what they WANTED and to live up to its hype it had to be the best of everything they like and enjoy.

The Last of us is an outstanding game, storydriven, yes, but the story in and of itself is undeniably fused wiht the gameplay which is equal parts tense scene setting exploration, and strategic puzzle-solving combat. The game has some flaws - mainly with the 'hanging from the rope' sequence (where you suddenly got unlimited ammo), the odd AI glitch, frame-rate drops, and one repetitive puzzle (getting Ellie across water), but it does a phenomenal jon in my opinion of using its combat mechaincs in multiple scenarios without feeling forced, scripted or repetitive. The use of simple platforming (ladders to get around and such is something that I find realistic, and rather than a puzzle in and of itself, a simple means to an end in getting around exploring the true depths of the environment available to you, and to collect the real puzzle pieces in notes, fragments of maps, and other observations to help you try and understand the world around you.

This my opinion only, but judgement based on what the game always intended itself to be, not my expectations. I can only fault it on a few small instances where it slipped up in trying to deliver what it intended; and my enjoyment of what it did deliver - which was an experience so spellbinding, enjoyable and thought provoking, I will continue to come back to it again and again, like a good book and a much needed salutory lesson amongst todays modern games.


no you are right - my mistake - best game evaaaa 100/10 - buy now! :)

also in my opinion


I know you have since revised your stance somewhat on this game, but I'm going to eb frank - I genuinely loathe people who review/comment on something before they've even finished it. It makes you seem like someone who is impatient, doesn't enjoy waiting for things to grow, mature and blossom, and thus didn't enjoy the game's opening as a way of developing and foreshadowing the rest of your experience. Not saying you are, but this is what all your premature comments on the game make me think.

Also you seem to have gotten lost or stuck in the first segment of the game, if it took you 8 hours to get to Bill's, and I can understand that would make you frustrated. My first playthrough I did in one day straight on Hard difficulty (17 hours just about straight, only breaking to eat, drink and break, it was that immersive), nonetheless it took me maybe an hour and a half to two hours max to get to Bill's (including the 20 minute intro) so you seem to have worked yourself into some kind of rut if it took you 8 hours.

So I'm afraid you are going to have to keep wearing ridicule from your earlier comments having never actually made it to the meat of the game, before you had to find some other meat. Hope you can enjoy it more now succesively if you don't get so bogged down by the start (although the slow opening was something I enjoyed, both as the gameplay tutorial (without feeling like sitting in a lecture, which invariably most games make me feel in their tutorials) and as a narrative device.

I honestly think you would have been better off asking for help from these threads if you were finding the first 8 hours to be still the beginning Boston sequence, rather than assuming it was a bad design on Naughtydog's part. you surely would have enjoyed it more. Yours respectfully, if more than a little disdainful of your hasty judgemental comments.


Sigh. at this point in the game you had not yet reached Bill's and had thus had one limited tutorial encounter with the infected, or Possibly two if you had done the 'hanging from the rope' part of teh game (which was it's worst moment for me. Understandabley you were unimpressed with the infected AI having only been through the first couple of encounters with them and I am not impressed that you use these experiences to justify talking down on the AI as a whole.

I can tell by the time stamp on these comments your progress in the game, and for the sake of discerning readers on this site, I am going to keep calling you on this everytime I see these comments, Polysix.


On the Cordyceps fungus quickly - it was never stated in the game nor by Rorschach that the Cordyceps fungus did or would naturally evolce to infect humans. Hopefully noe of us are naive enough to beleive that nations don't research and even develop biological weapons, nad it is certainly possible that the Cordyceps fungus infecting humans leap could have been engineered rather than naturally evolved. The game is in fact deliberately vague on how the fungus came to be transmitted by humans, but if the game's intro is anything to go by, it certainly was far too simultaneously and rapidly spreading across the country to be the result of a gradual evolutionary change.


"There is no risk of failure in a game like this. There is only the risk of having the play the same section yet again. In a survival game, that’s anathema. A survival game without meaningful death isn't a survival game. It’s just a game."

Its not about loosing progression because you did something wrong, its about adapting to the environment - going through the same scene but in a different way to succeed in a more rewarding way.


LOL. I'm not going to touch the stuff on Infinite jest, but you do understand waht those quoted critics are saying (albethey from Wikipedia) about The Lord of the Rings? Judith Shulevitz isn't actually overly critical of teh novel itself, rather that Tolkein was writing in what was beginning to be considered an outdated style. If the book had been written 20 or 30 years earlier the same literature would have been lauded by even her as well - she finds that his literature was overly grandoise for his day and age, and if you read her actual article it is in truth far more about reconciling the present day influences of Tolkien's work with his literary preservatism. See here: her full article was posted in the NY times book review magazine.

And don't even get me started on Richard Jenkyns - the wikipedia page did a wonderful hackjob on his article the full quote reads thus: "Tolkien's style has been both loved and loathed. I find it hard to make up my mind. In small quantities, his prose can seem to have a kind of timeless dignity and simplicity, sometimes eloquent, sometimes even moving. But in large quantities it palls: one begins to feel that this writer is writing, very competently, in a dead language. After many pages, one starts to find the style oddly bland and characterless; ultimately it comes to seem, like other things in The Lord of the Rings, anemic, and lacking in fiber."
He was stating his personal opinion that the of the style of the writing Tolkien used was something he didn't enjoy, while still demonstrating its qualities and strongpoints. The rest of his article as well continues in this fashion as well.

Finally if Dyson's comments even count as a critique (which I contest) he is only being quoted (and quite ridiculously at that) to be protesting the number of characters and detail Tolkien's novel(s) contain in Old English. This has been considered a flaw of the series in general, and makes them dry to some peolpe (as Jenkyn's says he feels) but these same people still laud them for their scope and significance, and contribution to modern fantasy and literature as a whole. As it is said: life replicates art.

So take everything you read on wikipedia with a grain of salt - Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings books can be considered an objective example of good books, from the large amount of critical acclaim, to just as significantly the success, legacy and impact the novels had and continue to have on the Fantasy genre of literature.

So it is a fair point Rorschach is trying to make, if you both have somewhat stretched the issue beyond its relevance, and thus leading to my otherwise irrelevant comment.

The Last of Us already has the critical acclaim and success I believe it deserves. As with The Lord of teh Rings, there will always be people who don't like the medium and method of the story telling, but waht I think is important is that The Last of Us sets out not to tell a story as such in the way one would read a book or watch a movie (as the game has been criticized by some few), but to BE a story for the gamer.
So did you like the gameplay? Did you not? Forgive my rhetoric, I already know, after reading your comments Gregg, your thoughts on the game, but I personally did love the gameplay in a sense, but I also found the whole game difficult, if not impossible to seperate into all of its components - in fact I believe viewing these components as seperate is doing the game an injustice, for, for better or worse, the story IS the gameplay; is the environment, the stunningly and hauntingly beautiful vistas; the often dappling light; the quiet resonating music, tense dialogue and sparse sound.
While it's probably too soon to call, I think the fact that for the first time a game has been such a complete experience (for me and many others) will be its legacy, and set it on that standard.

It's not 10/10 in a traditional sense; it's flawed in places but the beauty of it is that when I was playing I didn't care. Just reflecting on the game, it feels more 'real' to me afterwards perhaps because of it's flaws, not just in spite of. I truly can't describe the feeling of post-game satisfaction and reflexion any better than that (and yes I meant 'reflexion', it's a word). You may call me a fanboy, or think I have too firmly sat myself on the hype train (even though coming home with the game for the first time I had not even heard of it before I saw the banner advertising it in EB games), but the reason that I would give it a near perfect score, and believe it
deserves all the ones it's getting is because I got so completely invested in its reality.
While I was playing I could not seperate any one of the game's elements from the experience (nor myself from it) and so it earns its right as a masterpiece in my eyes.


Um no he doesn't, actually. He spends most of his time actaully talking about how good the story was, and how he liked little animations, and making many large and sweeping references to Naughty Dog's previous successes in the Uncharted series, until finally in the last 3 paragraphs and one earlier one where he talks about finding cover arrayed around a room (there is debris that could be used as cover in every room, Tom!) but nothing on the actual mechanics beyond that.

He says "Metro: Last Light is another linear shooter with sneaking elements (and a very similar theme), but it has a consistent gameplay identity, an ongoing setting and tone, a sense of focus that sustains it. The Last of Us is every bit as linear, but it has an uneasy time deciding whether it’s action, stealth, survival horror, or a reload-and-replay atrocity."
But in my opinion does a poor job of justifying this statement with any actual examples of 'confused' gameplay identity within the game - and since all bar 3 sequences, if I remember correctly (the 'hanging from the rope' and 'starting the car' sequences at Bill's town and the 'sniper nest shootout') are fully dynamic, so the identity of the game's combat gameplay is entirely up to you as the player to decidewhether you take the rest of the game's adversaries on head on, take them out with traps, stealth, or even bypass many altogether (as they are sometimes between you and your destination, this last option isn't always possible).

Already here, I have provided more examples and analysis than Tom did. He again compares the scavenging to 'Rage' without justification. (What about the mechanic felt so good/bad that it reminded you of rage, Tom?) it's the step between observation and judgement that this review is missing throughout.

The best he gets is here: "But then you’re reloading for the umpteenth time — sheesh, why don’t I just drop the difficulty level down to easy already? — to get through some canned encounter where you have to fight with only so many bullets or stealth through a patrol pattern or hit a boss’s weak points" and even this is a poor description - there are in fact, only two "boss" style fight in the game (if you could truly call them that) and only in one, do you have to shoot for any kind of discernible weak point (the bloater in the school). At least he is stating the problem he found - excessive reloading or stealthing in ofights or to avoid them - which is as much player choice in the game as it is a gameplay critique. He honestly sounds more like someone complaining about third person/stealth shooters over all. There was no direct analysis of what made TLOU stealth mechanics better or worse than the norm. he even contradicts himself: (or is it merely opaque sarcasm?) "But once the gunplay gets going, it can be hearty." and "I couldn’t be happier to be talking to you now instead of playing that turgid stealth shooter."

I'm sorry to those who like Tom's reviews but here he does a poor job. He will say something about the game, say that he either liked it or didn't. Then aliken it to another game. his analysis is lacking and that's what makes it a poor review, for me, overall.


Finally a decent unbiased review. Good game, but way overhyped, basically an interactive movie like Uncharted with glaring flaws the reviewers refused to look at.


If you think The Last of Us is an interactive movie, I suggest you don't get Heavy Rain.

Also, it's not really unbiased, because it's practically what the person feels about the game. I, for one, agree with IGN review even if they were money-hungry capitalists like some here say, and I have played the game through 5 times.


I played Heavy Rain, enjoyed playing through it once, but felt no reason to play it again when i could just watch it like a "movie" again on youtube to see the different outcomes.