The Last of Us

Naughty Dog Inc.
Feb 4, 2015

The Last of Us won well over 200 awards for very good reasons.  Both the original, and the PS4 remake, are stunning examples of the power of immersive storytelling.  The game is visually breathtaking, the atmospheric sound effects are perfectly suited, the acting is top-notch, the gameplay is reasonably responsive, and the world-building is fantastic.

Twenty years after the world went mad, you play as Joel, a smuggler in a dystopian future where a fungal infection can render anyone into a zombie-like creature.  Joel and his partner Tess are hired to smuggle a girl out of the military-controlled city to a group of rebels. The girl, Ellie, is infected with a mutated version of the spores: she potentially holds the cure. It's a long trek across the ruins of a country gone back to the wild, with a lot of potential for things to go horribly wrong.

This is a game for survival/horror enthusiasts, people in search of something to make them cry, and anybody who enjoys a story with depth and complication. Sadly, this is also a game that is prone to inducing motion-sickness with the camera motion in those prone to that. I couldn't take more than about thirty minutes at a time. If you can play the game, I highly recommend it.  If you can't, try waiting for the movie.

Reviewed by Library Staff