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Girlfriend Reviews: Understanding Last of Us 2

yurinka

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Problem is there are people who are

A) I love this because Naughty Dog and I love Naughty Dog
B) I love this because I believe it has a great story and here is why
C) I thought it was OK but I liked the gameplay
D) I didn't like it and I believe the story itself has issues and here is why
E) WTF JOEL IS DEAD? THATS MY DAD
F) SJW CULTURE WAR FUNDED BY SOROS THE END TIMES ARE NEAR!

So unless you are being explicit people will generalise. Fortunately it feels like E and F are going away so B through D can talk like humans
In my case I'm a mixture of some of them. I love Naughty Dog and this type of games since the first Uncharted (with Lost Legacy maybe as exception, I think it's their weaker game), I loved the gameplay, I hate what they did with Joel -more than what, how they did it-, I appreciate diversity but don't like having all the new women looking ugly or too masculine, and I liked the story but I think it has issues.

And well, I think that many of the story issues could have been fixed or at least softened just changing the order of the parts of the game and making some tweaks. I'd have introduced and humanized the Wolfs before they do that to Joel, and then I'd make Ellie day 1, Abby day 1, Ellie day 2, Abby day 2, Ellie day 3, Abby day 3. Because as it is right now, when Abby starts you don't give a fuck about them, you hate them because they killed Joel, and they Abby portion happens as a flashback in the middle of a huge cliffhanger so you expect it to be short and instead of that it's almost as long as the first TLOU.

I'd have explained better than Joel now trust more people than in TLOU1 because he had peace during 4 years at Jackson to understand how he fall in that ambush and I'd have given him a more epic end and without a character who looks like Neil Druckmann spitting him.

The game also feels maybe too long and the end feels too dark. I'd have finished the game with the first time of the farm, a nice good ending. And then to include what it follows in a separate DLC or to keep it for the start of TLOU Part III.
 

Bumblebeetuna

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It'd be risky for me to jump out of an airplane without a parachute, if I somehow miraculously survived would it no longer have been risky for me to have done that? Like is risk defined by the outcome being failure now?

Wow what an incredible leap of logic there. Sorry but I don’t care to explain what risk means to you. If you feel a generic story wrapped in six or seven years of development and massive marketing is risk then more power to you.
 
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Wow what an incredible leap of logic there. Sorry but I don’t care to explain what risk means to you. If you feel a generic story wrapped in six or seven years of development and massive marketing is risk then more power to you.

I didn't make any leaps in logic, you claimed because the metascore and sales are fine there was no risk associated with it. This is a patently false idea you proposed, you're now re-shifting the goalposts because of it.
 

joe_zazen

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I think the writing itself is fine, Its the direction of the piece that hurts it.
There's a fundamental mismatch between the restraint shown in the narrative and the full-on excessiveness of the gameplay that robs key moments of their potency.

.

How can any individual death be impactful when you have been killing 20 people per hour for 30 hours? imagine telltales TWD season 1 with 600 player initiated deaths, lol.

& The reception is in large part because the audience for this game likes violence, they like realistic gore, they like killing people with guns in games. But the people making this game don't like violence, they dont want to be devoting their lives to making killing fun, so you get this story.

in short, they are selling a game designed to make murder sim fans feel bad, so wtf did they expect?
 

joe_zazen

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I didn't make any leaps in logic, you claimed because the metascore and sales are fine there was no risk associated with it. This is a patently false idea you proposed, you're now re-shifting the goalposts because of it.

ND mitigates risk through a huge amount of playtesting and hiring reviewers to faux review (10k or more for each review, so yeah reviewers get paid and have financial relationships with these companies) and iteration. They know how things are going to review and what players are going to think before launch.

actual risk would be making the game rts or telltale style.
 
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ND mitigates risk through a huge amount of playtesting and hiring reviewers to faux review (10k or more for each review, so yeah reviewers get paid and have financial relationships with these companies) and iteration. They know how things are going to review and what players are going to think before launch.

actual risk would be making the game rts or telltale style.
You're arguing degrees of a risk not existence of it. Anyone could tell you a game that you played as Joel and Ellie that was simply last of us 1.5 would be far less risky than what they did. This forum has been absolute chaos over the decisions made in this game even if you argue such a thing was calculated because controversy can be good that's still a risky proposition few games go for. If it's not risky it's safe and I'd love to see the argument for it being safe.
 
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SlicedBread3

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ND mitigates risk through a huge amount of playtesting and hiring reviewers to faux review (10k or more for each review, so yeah reviewers get paid and have financial relationships with these companies) and iteration. They know how things are going to review and what players are going to think before launch.

actual risk would be making the game rts or telltale style.

Because making it an RTS would stop them from using playtesting and hiring reviewers to faux review it?
 

Keihart

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In my case I'm a mixture of some of them. I love Naughty Dog and this type of games since the first Uncharted (with Lost Legacy maybe as exception, I think it's their weaker game), I loved the gameplay, I hate what they did with Joel -more than what, how they did it-, I appreciate diversity but don't like having all the new women looking ugly or too masculine, and I liked the story but I think it has issues.

And well, I think that many of the story issues could have been fixed or at least softened just changing the order of the parts of the game and making some tweaks. I'd have introduced and humanized the Wolfs before they do that to Joel, and then I'd make Ellie day 1, Abby day 1, Ellie day 2, Abby day 2, Ellie day 3, Abby day 3. Because as it is right now, when Abby starts you don't give a fuck about them, you hate them because they killed Joel, and they Abby portion happens as a flashback in the middle of a huge cliffhanger so you expect it to be short and instead of that it's almost as long as the first TLOU.

I'd have explained better than Joel now trust more people than in TLOU1 because he had peace during 4 years at Jackson to understand how he fall in that ambush and I'd have given him a more epic end and without a character who looks like Neil Druckmann spitting him.

The game also feels maybe too long and the end feels too dark. I'd have finished the game with the first time of the farm, a nice good ending. And then to include what it follows in a separate DLC or to keep it for the start of TLOU Part III.
This it's exactly what most people can't get over and what it's so ballsy about it in my book. Game wants you to hate Abby, to loath at the revelation that you are stuck playing as her and that you don't get your satisfaction in the climax of the first half. The narrative it's not worried about simply making sense, but attempts to be emotionally sound for the player. It goes to great lengths to evoke the themes directly to the player instead of distancing you from it, i see a lot of parallels with Death Stranding in this.
 
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"I'll never accuse Druckmann of not being ballsy in his story telling"

Yelling fire in a crowded theater is not ballsy or brave. It's simple incitement.
And it's pretty ballsy to go ahead and do something considered incitement that you could actually get in trouble for. though the idea that what they did here was equal to yelling fire in a crowded theater is kind of nauseating to me
 
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And it's pretty ballsy to go ahead and do something considered incitement that you could actually get in trouble for. though the idea that what they did here was equal to yelling fire in a crowded theater is kind of nauseating to me

Not in the sense it put people in danger of being immediately crushed in a stampede, but he the impetus for the story of TLOU2 was to piss people off. There's no greater meaning. If he were playing Red Dead Redemption 2 and had the choice to Press A to Greet or Press B to Antagonize, he mashed that B button. It's typical behavior for people like him. Been going on for centuries.
 

Jon Neu

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Problem is there are people who are

A) I love this because Naughty Dog and I love Naughty Dog
B) I love this because I believe it has a great story and here is why
C) I thought it was OK but I liked the gameplay
D) I didn't like it and I believe the story itself has issues and here is why
E) WTF JOEL IS DEAD? THATS MY DAD
F) SJW CULTURE WAR FUNDED BY SOROS THE END TIMES ARE NEAR!

So unless you are being explicit people will generalise. Fortunately it feels like E and F are going away so B through D can talk like humans

You forgot the G and H one.

G) OH MY GOD THERE’S NOTHING WOKE ABOUT THE GAME! YOU SEXIST BIGOT SANDWICH! WHY ARE YOU SO AFRAID OF STRONG WOMYN?

H) THE GAME IS SO COMPLEX YOUR POOR MINDS CAN’T DECIPHER IT!
 
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Not in the sense it put people in danger of being immediately crushed in a stampede, but he the impetus for the story of TLOU2 was to piss people off. There's no greater meaning. If he were playing Red Dead Redemption 2 and had the choice to Press A to Greet or Press B to Antagonize, he mashed that B button. It's typical behavior for people like him. Been going on for centuries.
I didn't get that impression. I got the impression he wanted to do something new using the old characters. instead of doing it last of us sequel the way they handled uncharted sequels they wanted to give us something truly new and since the last of us was a deep game they wanted this one to be as well but they didn't want to retread the same ideas. Either way if all it takes to set a fanbase ablaze is to kill a beloved character then that's going to be a scary world for anyone who wants to be a writer representing limitations on the art form that are especially weird given some of the earliest narratives penned by humans were tragic. I don't want to live in a world where anything that isn't as sanitized as the MCU is the equivalent to yelling fire in a theater
 
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Spukc

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You forgot the G and H one.

G) OH MY GOD THERE’S NOTHING WOKE ABOUT THE GAME! YOU SEXIST BIGOT SANDWICH! WHY ARE YOU SO AFRAID OF STRONG WOMYN?

H) THE GAME IS SO COMPLEX YOUR POOR MINDS CAN’T DECIPHER IT!
PIG!!
 
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Umbral

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I think youre confused. They explain the narrative but it doesnt mean you have to like it. For example, alot of people have no attachment to joel. And felt nothing going from Ellie to Abby. Which youre suppose to feel resentment for. There’s alot of people who seem to misunderstand the ending of the first game. Joel kidnapped Ellie. Personally I hated the game. But to say the game isnt solid is foolish. To say the game has horrible writing is funny. You can hate the plot. But I would love to know what video games are written better. Ill be surprised if this game doesnt get BAFTAs.

In the end. It doesnt matter. The game itself is extremely satisfactory. Most videogamers dont have a high bar for storytelling.
Joel kidnapped Ellie? That’s some top-shelf bullshit, right there.
 
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Yeah, TLOU2 is the first script ever that kills a beloved character.

It’s not like they are literally jumping on a trend of subverting expectations and kill beloved characters that is somehow all the rage right now.
It's been all the rage since William Shakespeare. if you need media always meet your expectations there are certainly places you can go.
 
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Jon Neu

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It's been all the rage since William Shakespeare. if you need media always meet your expectations there are certainly places you can go.

Seems you still don’t get it and use the silly and juvenile “you didn’t like it because it didn’t meet your headcanon” as a deflection.

Again, the core ideas of TLOU2 script are good, like some of the core ideas of The Last Jedi were good in theory. Hell, killing Joel is probably the best thing the game does.

But all that matters is the execution. All that matters is how you construct your ideas, how you present them and what you do with them.

All ideas are already recycled, Cuckmann isn’t doing anything new. The devil is in the details.
 
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Seems you still don’t get it and use the silly and juvenile “you didn’t like it because it didn’t meet your headcanon” as a deflection.

Again, the core ideas of TLOU2 script are good, like some of the core ideas of The Last Jedi were good in theory. Hell, killing Joel is probably the best thing the game does.

But all that matters is the execution. All that matters is how you construct your ideas, how you present them and what you do with them.

All ideas are already recycled, Cuckmann isn’t doing anything new. The devil is in the details.
How many times are you going to change the parameters of the argument? Obviously the devil is in the details but I've seen no good argument for why there's anything wrong with the details. We certainly weren't arguing the details a second ago.
 

Dane

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You know what would also have been ballsy?

If Ellie turned out to be a Decipticon and had to team up with Bruce Willis to stop a giant cheese meteorite from destroying earth using a ragtag team of characters from the Lion King.

Ballsy != good story telling. Ballsy just means it was a risk, not that it paid off. When you need your game "explained"? That's an indication it didn't pay off.

That's why I say to myself

Doesn't matter if a person/company played safe or risky, what matters is PLAY SMART.
 

Jon Neu

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How many times are you going to change the parameters of the argument?

I’m not changing anything, you simply don’t get it right the first time and that’s why you perceive there is “parameters” changing (whatever that really means).

Obviously the devil is in the details but I've seen no good argument for why there's anything wrong with the details

At this point we all know it’s not a matter of you seeing it, but you being physically incapable of wanting to see it.


We certainly weren't arguing the details a second ago

If that’s what you want, then we can do it. I have no problem with it.

Hell, that’s precisely what I’m doing in two different threads. And you are on those threads too.
 
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Joel kidnapped Ellie? That’s some top-shelf bullshit, right there.
Ellie was willing to die for a cure. Joel with some daughter trauma. He was unwilling to let her make that decision. Joel isnt her father. Its 100% Ellie’s decision to make. Otherwise he wouldnt have lied to her. Cause he knows the choice she would have made. Joel asked her if they could turn back, go back to tommys. Ellie said “no, after all I’ve done. It all couldnt have been for nothing.” The game just doesnt outright say it. Otherwise Joel’s decision would be straight up unredeemable.
 
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Saber

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4 million people do not care about what people say on the forums.
Maybe you should go write a video game. Let me know when it comes out.


Sorry to say that, but this is the dumbest take I ever read on this thread.

Imagine this person above in real life.

Normal person: "Hey, I don't like this steak"
This member: "Well, maybe you should mAkE oNE yourself"

Normal person: "I bought this book but didn't like the story"
This member:"Maybe you should wRiTe one"

Seriously this excuse is so damn stupid. You don't need to be an expert or work at the matter to be allowed to give a criticism.
 

Jon Neu

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Ellie was willing to die for a cure. Joel with some daughter trauma. He was unwilling to let her make that decision. Joel isnt her father. Its 100% Ellie’s decision to make.

Ellie is a little girl, she isn’t capable of making such a decision when she has barely experienced life.

She wants her life to mean something, but she doesn’t want to die, it’s just that she doesn’t know any other way to make her life mean something because again, she is just a little brat.

Joel saved the life of a little girl who was going to be murdered by this terrorist group on the incredibly vague pretext of founding a cure that somehow was going to be developed by a surgeon in some abandoned hospital.
 

Umbral

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Ellie was willing to die for a cure. Joel with some daughter trauma. He was unwilling to let her make that decision. Joel isnt her father. Its 100% Ellie’s decision to make. Otherwise he wouldnt have lied to her. Cause he knows the choice she would have made. Joel asked her if they could turn back, go back to tommys. Ellie said “no, after all I’ve done. It all couldnt have been for nothing.” The game just doesnt outright say it. Otherwise Joel’s decision would be straight up unredeemable.
As far as I’m aware, it’s never established until Part II that Ellie was willing to die (which I also thought was some retcon bullshit). The Fireflies and Marlene never even talk to her about it. They never give her a choice. I can’t remember myself, but I’m told there is a part in TLoU 1 where Ellie is talking about learning to swim after they’re done at the hospital, which indicates she didn’t think she was going to her grave either. Jerry Anderson doesn’t even have the conviction to say he’d sacrifice his own daughter.

The idea that humanity is doomed otherwise is also bullshit, as made apparent by Part II. Humanity is doing just fine, in fact they’re beating back the infection and thriving in some cases.
 
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Nymphae

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Haven't played it, not going to. I saw the first one in previews, got excited, heard the story was good, and since there was no sign of woke garbage, I bought it and enjoyed it because the gameplay was fun and the story was fairly well told I thought.

Second one was woke marketing from the get go and turned me off of the product. More of the same plus value added preaching doesn't appeal to me. You can call me a hater I guess but the product wasn't speaking to me anymore, and it felt like they were using the success of the first game (which was not overly political at all) to try and push this on more people than the product would have reached had it not been a sequel to a highly praised game.
 
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I’m not changing anything, you simply don’t get it right the first time and that’s why you perceive there is “parameters” changing (whatever that really means).



At this point we all know it’s not a matter of you seeing it, but you being physically incapable of wanting to see it.




If that’s what you want, then we can do it. I have no problem with it.

Hell, that’s precisely what I’m doing in two different threads. And you are on those threads too.
you tried making the argument that the game was simply jumping on some weird trendy bandwagon narrative storytelling that's existed since storytelling has. When the obviously flawed argument failed you change what we were arguing about. and yes I am aware of your evasive and poor argument tactics existing in multiple threads.
 

Keihart

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Ellie is a little girl, she isn’t capable of making such a decision when she has barely experienced life.

She wants her life to mean something, but she doesn’t want to die, it’s just that she doesn’t know any other way to make her life mean something because again, she is just a little brat.

Joel saved the life of a little girl who was going to be murdered by this terrorist group on the incredibly vague pretext of founding a cure that somehow was going to be developed by a surgeon in some abandoned hospital.
"i'm still waiting for my turn"
"No matter what, you keep finding something to fight for"
Not even the characters would agree with you.
Right or wrong, it's anyway questionable.
 

Umbral

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"Misleading" or misdirection aren't new tricks in gaming. Nobody complained about MGS 2 and MGS 5. Embrace it.
I think it comes down to if it paid off or not.

MGS 2: paid it off in spades, even though initially you wanna play as Snake. It serves a purpose and wouldn’t have had the same effect if they led with it. It also would have hurt sales.

MGS 5: I was indifferent to. I was mislead but I wasn’t upset about it. The gameplay was fantastic and I liked Venom Snake even though I wanted Big Boss.

Part II: Abby wasn’t in the marketing at all apart from the Paris Games Week trailer. She was left off of everything. They also swapped characters into scenes they weren’t in. They showed the steelcase with Joel and Ellie even though it’s actually Ellie/Abby. They sold it as Joel and Ellie, which it’s not. The first game we knew about Joel and Ellie, even though we didn’t know we would play as Ellie. Playing as Ellie was an easy transition because Joel was gravely injured. Abby didn’t pay off for me, I begrudgingly played it as her until it switched back to Ellie. I ended up liking playing Abby but not liking her or her friends as characters.

If they showed that the game was Ellie and Abby it would have hurt the game’s sales a lot. They sold it as Joel and Ellie because that’s what people wanted but not what they were gonna get. People feel betrayed because it’s clear why they did it plus the game didn’t pay off for a lot of players. If you’re gonna pull some shit like this, you better nail it.
 
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When people say the game was shown as Joel and Ellie did they watch the more recent trailers? In the one just before it came out Joel isn't shown much at all. He also isn't in the kiss trailer, the Abby trailer or the first teaser. They admittedly did a few things to mislead but when taken as a whole you'd have to assume someone was not paying any attention to the media surrounding the game to think Joel is still the main character.
 
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MrS

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I think it comes down to if it paid off or not.

MGS 2: paid it off in spades, even though initially you wanna play as Snake. It serves a purpose and wouldn’t have had the same effect if they led with it. It also would have hurt sales.

MGS 5: I was indifferent to. I was mislead but I wasn’t upset about it. The gameplay was fantastic and I liked Venom Snake even though I wanted Big Boss.

Part II: Abby wasn’t in the marketing at all apart from the Paris Games Week trailer. She was left off of everything. They also swapped characters into scenes they weren’t in. They showed the steelcase with Joel and Ellie even though it’s actually Ellie/Abby. They sold it as Joel and Ellie, which it’s not. The first game we knew about Joel and Ellie, even though we didn’t know we would play as Ellie. Playing as Ellie was an easy transition because Joel was gravely injured. Abby didn’t pay off for me, I begrudgingly played it as her until it switched back to Ellie. I ended up liking playing Abby but not liking her or her friends as characters.

If they showed that the game was Ellie and Abby it would have hurt the game’s sales a lot. They sold it as Joel and Ellie because that’s what people wanted but not what they were gonna get. People feel betrayed because it’s clear why they did it plus the game didn’t pay off for a lot of players. If you’re gonna pull some shit like this, you better nail it.
Totally agree with your takes on how MGS did it. Regarding TLOU2, it worked for me, honestly. Had a lot of empathy for Abby after initially wanting to smash her fucking face in. Really liked her and felt for her by the end. I respect your take though, and there a lot of people it didn't work for. We will always have to wonder 'what if the leaks didn't spoil the story'. I imagine the twist would have been a lot more impactful if everybody went in blind. As Neil has said, when you are shown something so far removed from its context like the we were with the leaks, it's understandable that people are going to dislike the character if you can't see the full arc.
 
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Umbral

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When people say the game was shown as Joel and Ellie did they watch the more recent trailers? In the one just before it came out Joel isn't shown much at all. He also isn't in the kiss trailer, the Abby trailer or the first teaser. They admittedly did a few things to mislead but when taken as a whole you'd have to assume someone was not paying any attention to the media surrounding the game to think Joel is still the main character.
I certainly didn’t see all the trailers that were released. I for sure saw the announce, PGW, the kiss trailer, and whatever one shows Joel in Jesse’s place in Hillcrest.
 

Umbral

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Totally agree with your takes on how MGS did it. Regarding TLOU2, it worked for me, honestly. Had a lot of empathy for her after initially wanting to smash her fucking face in. Really liked her and felt for her by the end. I respect your take though, and there a lot of people it didn't work for. We will always have to wonder 'what if the leaks didn't spoil the story'. I imagine the twist would have been a lot more impactful if everybody went in blind. As Neil has said, when you are shown something so far removed from its context like the were with the leaks, it's understandable that people are going to dislike the character.
I saw all the leaks leading up to release. I do wonder if I might have felt different, at least initially, if I hadn’t seen them. I think I would have landed where I am now but it would have taken longer to get here. I’ve had since April to look at things under a microscope and talk about them.
 
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Keihart

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I certainly didn’t see all the trailers that were released. I for sure saw the announce, PGW, the kiss trailer, and whatever one shows Joel in Jesse’s place in Hillcrest.
After the reveal, the teaser of Ellie playing Through The Valley, everyone including me was like... "oh so Joel it's dead and Ellie goes in a revenge spree? "
They tried to put the cat back in the bag with the last trailer but that was after the leaks so it was imposible, or maybe it was possible and that's how people got surprised.

Abby it's a surprise for sure tho, playing as her at least, just like playing as Ellie in the first, at least for me since i avoided spoilers.

Also, let's not forget the shit show of MGS2 for what it was, people removed from the press hype didn't give it a second thought, but everyone on the internet was trashing it too althought "everyone" at that time was different than now with social media and stuff. But it took years for the mainstream perception to change.
 
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tassletine

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There’s nothing wrong with the storytelling as long as you like teenage fiction for young women, which this most certainly is. I think the authors should have been more honest about it though as selling this sort of story to the usual audience (young men) was always going to turn out badly. Personally, I think the story worked bit was far too long and took it’s self far too seriously.

Someone needed to tell the developers that the success of the first game was down to it’s heart and characters, that’s what made it unique, not the realistic gore and violence.
Doubling down on those qualities, the realism, gore and pain etc, was a bizarre choice when all games do that — because they threw away most of what made the original special. Seeing Abby go through that pain meant almost nothing because ALL video games characters go through this sort of drama.
 
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I like that someone brought up playing as Ellie being a surprise in the first one because it was the first one actually changes who you play as another time because you technically begin the game as Joel's daughter. the shifting perspectives has always been a part of the games DNA.
 
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Umbral

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I like that someone brought up playing as Ellie being a surprise in the first one because it was the first one actually changes who you play as another time because you technically begin the game as Joel's daughter. the shifting perspectives has always been a part of the games DNA.
This is true. The first game is in chronological order, which I think helps it.
 
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Umbral

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After the reveal, the teaser of Ellie playing Through The Valley, everyone including me was like... "oh so Joel it's dead and Ellie goes in a revenge spree? "
They tried to put the cat back in the bag with the last trailer but that was after the leaks so it was imposible, or maybe it was possible and that's how people got surprised.

Abby it's a surprise for sure tho, playing as her at least, just like playing as Ellie in the first, at least for me since i avoided spoilers.

Also, let's not forget the shit show of MGS2 for what it was, people removed from the press hype didn't give it a second thought, but everyone on the internet was trashing it too althought "everyone" at that time was different than now with social media and stuff. But it took years for the mainstream perception to change.
Unlike MGS 2, I don’t think people will be looking back at TLOU Part II as something remarkable decades from now.
 
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Ixiah

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Because you have arbitrarily decided first week sales are all that matters when calculating risk?
Of course that is all that matters, otherwise you have to explain :
Or how so many People wanted to return the Game in Australia, their Shops refused to accept it.
 
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Yoboman

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In my case I'm a mixture of some of them. I love Naughty Dog and this type of games since the first Uncharted (with Lost Legacy maybe as exception, I think it's their weaker game), I loved the gameplay, I hate what they did with Joel -more than what, how they did it-, I appreciate diversity but don't like having all the new women looking ugly or too masculine, and I liked the story but I think it has issues.

And well, I think that many of the story issues could have been fixed or at least softened just changing the order of the parts of the game and making some tweaks. I'd have introduced and humanized the Wolfs before they do that to Joel, and then I'd make Ellie day 1, Abby day 1, Ellie day 2, Abby day 2, Ellie day 3, Abby day 3. Because as it is right now, when Abby starts you don't give a fuck about them, you hate them because they killed Joel, and they Abby portion happens as a flashback in the middle of a huge cliffhanger so you expect it to be short and instead of that it's almost as long as the first TLOU.


I'd have explained better than Joel now trust more people than in TLOU1 because he had peace during 4 years at Jackson to understand how he fall in that ambush and I'd have given him a more epic end and without a character who looks like Neil Druckmann spitting him.

The game also feels maybe too long and the end feels too dark. I'd have finished the game with the first time of the farm, a nice good ending. And then to include what it follows in a separate DLC or to keep it for the start of TLOU Part III.
Sounds really boring and standard. Yes it would have been easy to make you empathise with Abby by having her upfront, it would have been easy to give Joel a heroic death. But the question is why? This franchise has never dealt in those style of cliches, it is meant to be confronting, you are meant to hate Abby for a large part of the game, maybe never even forgive her, be desperately sad and angry for what happen to Joel - to feel what Ellie is feeling.

That you hated it is not the wrong response, but you also need to let the story take you to where it wants you to go. Games don't always need to be about gratification, it is a massive limitation for a story teller

QIts the difference between how Game of Thrones earlier seasons handled death compared to later seasons (spoilers) none of the Starks went out in a blaze of glory. They didn't get the heroes death. Ned was unfairly murdered. Same for Catelyn and Robb, even more brutally. But it served the story. Then in the later seasons we get moments where Theon gets the hero death moment and nobody gave a fuck

And to clarify I think your structure could have told a very solid tale. But it sucks a lot of the emotional beats out of the game. What is the impetus for revenge if you as the player think Abby is justified?
 
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