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|OT| The Last of Us Pt II |OT| Oh Ellie...I think they should be terrified of you

Freeman

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Hate for Drukmann? You're wrong. I'm not one of those idiots that sent messages to the man just because his team did what they did to the narrative.

I simply didn't like his work in the game, that's all, and like you I'm entitled to have my own opinion about the game.
I meant hate for the game. The game takes a gamble if it's going to be able to bring you back on board or not, some people like you are lost along the way.

It could've been a safe sequel, it wasn't. That's great for an AAA game to have that liberty.
 
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bishopcruz

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Going by the lore in the game, such as it were (I'm not saying it makes sense, but these are well-established rules of how things work within the game world), it takes just a little while for someone to turn into a runner. Some two years to turn into a clicker. If you're particularly large and healthy, you may end up as a bloater. In the end though, you'll be pushing spores somewhere, these are not like typical zombies who are basically immortal.

If we are to believe that logic, it seems quite obvious a child would be overtaken by the fungus quite quickly. Thus the reason why you never see them is that they're so short-lived.
Eh, most Zombies would be dead by this point then. Honestly the Cordycepts is my favorite idea for HOW a zombnie apocalypse would happen, but it doesn't work well for a continued apocalypse 20 years later. Oddly enough Days Gone has the best explanation for how Zombies don't die out over time.
 

bishopcruz

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Have you got a source that says the changed the narrative of the game? Only thing I've read is that they changed the ending.
Eh it's through all of his interviews. Druckmann basically changed a LOT though some of it is just from evidence in game:

  • Abby was originally the daughter of someone Joel killed in his hunter days.
  • Jackson was originally a much bigger part of the game, where you played as Abby and Ellie with it as a hub
  • Even then, the dance WAS the intro to Jackson, but was moved to the end to speed along Joel dying.
  • Santa Barbara was also supposed to be a much larger part of the game
  • Lev was originally not trans, and was supposed to die.
  • Abby was black, and not a mutant.
  • Seattle was supposed to be a lot longer, for Ellie at least. She was supposed to end up on scar island before making it to the Aquarium
  • There is evidence that some of the flashbacks were intended to be done in order. Ellie's second flashback plays like a tutorial section.
  • More evidence of cut things are the fact that the Sniper Rifle never shows up again after a full tutorial on how it works.
 
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Nankatsu

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You know the risks, your existence and you hate is proof of Drukmann genius.
I meant hate for the game. The game takes a gamble if it's going to be able to bring you back on board or not, some people like you are lost along the way.

It could've been a safe sequel, it wasn't. That's great for an AAA game to have that liberty.
Some may argue if it is even a sequel at all.

 
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Freeman

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Some may argue if it is even a sequel at all.

How is it not a sequel?

I honestly don't know what did you guys expect was going to happen with how the first game ended.

I was against the sequel and I was against them using the same characters, they proved me wrong.
 
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Woggleman

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I already played through twice and now I am itching to go a third time. I almost never feel that way with a long SP game in such a short period of time. I might want to return a year or two later but almost never just three times in a row. If that does not say something about the quality of the game I don't know what does.
 
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Freeman

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There is one thing I don't get, whats the point of collecting those cards and coins? So dumb and makes for the worst and least creative achievements, legit waste of time.

Unrelated to that but showing that Druckmann is following the footsteps of Kojima:
The diegetic use of the map was close to perfect. Ellie writes on it as you play and it's later integrated into the story in an unexpected way. It's also introduced in a tricky way that makes you think it was optional but it isn't. I only wish they didn't have the marker tracking the player making it more of a puzzle.
 
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Woggleman

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There is one thing I don't get, whats the point of collecting those cards and coins? So dumb and makes for the worst and least creative achievements, legit waste of time.
They are just collectables. Every game seems to have them these days. At least it is not as bad as in some open world games. I adore RDR2 but no I don't want to collect bird feathers to make some stupid hat.
 
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Freeman

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They are just collectables. Every game seems to have them these days. At least it is not as bad as in some open world games. I adore RDR2 but no I don't want to collect bird feathers to make some stupid hat.
The game doesn't work for things like that when you are constantly being blocked from going back to places. If I was making the achievements I would focus on forcing players to experiment playing in different ways. The artifacts one at least makes some sense since at least it's forcing you to find most things that are related to the story details.

God of War had a similar problem, most areas aren't meant for you to go back to, you end up encountering a bunch of road blocks to find the damn birds that add next to nothing meanwhile entire aspects of the gameplay can be ignored while getting the achivements.

In TLoU2 you also can't check how you are doing in an area regarding collectibles without going to the main menu and loading the game. The game also makes it so easy to rewrite your last save that you can easily get yourself locked out of an area even when replaying the game for collectibles, having to play the entire section again because fucking Dina locked the path behind you or some shit.
 
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Eiknarf

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Revenge gets you no where. That's the point of the game, Abby realized it sooner than Ellie did. Unfortunately I don't think the final scene for that revelation is good and spoils what generally is a great game.

I still think about this game regularly even a month onward, I was gifted what I wanted from The Last of Us. The scope of world increases, you're not just fighting random thug survivor #467, you're fighting armed, organized people with identities. Ellie driven by rage walking into an unknown and being a third party in a literal warzone. Abby living out her three days on a different perspective, revenge having fractured her friend group and her drive to even care about The WLF slowly dies.

The three day system was such a nice spin and change on what's happening. These people didn't know it was to be their last, and seeing it after witnessing their end is far more interesting than the other way around. They are just doing their daily routines and never once thought this was their final day on Earth. To take life for granted in this post-apocalyptic hell hole.

Also the composer for the first game is high key boring and lacks emotional impact or intensity so getting Mac Quayle on board was the best thing they could have ever done. An eye for an eye goes in hard.
Wait

It’s the same composer

Gustavo
 

bishopcruz

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How is it not a sequel?

I honestly don't know what did you guys expect was going to happen with how the first game ended.

I was against the sequel and I was against them using the same characters, they proved me wrong.
So the game is brave for killing Joel but we should have expected that the game would kill Joel? Am I getting that right?
 

Freeman

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spoiler ridden post
No, it's how they did it, when they did it, what they did after. The fact that you can't accept what happened is proof that they took risks with the story. It's wasn't poorly made in any regard so what most people don't like is where he took the story(ignoring those that hate it for other more stupid reasons like console war, political sensibility, hating change, etc).
 

Woggleman

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Agree with how he did or bot but Neil had some balls to make this game the way he did. He could have easily made some feel good safe game that pleased the masses but he did what he wanted to and stayed true to the arthouse roots of the series and I give him props for that.
 
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bishopcruz

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No, it's how they did it, when they did it, what they did after. The fact that you can't accept what happened is proof that they took risks with the story. It's wasn't poorly made in any regard so what most people don't like is where he took the story(ignoring those that hate it for other more stupid reasons like console war, political sensibility, hating change, etc).
Oh it was poorly made in several regards, especially in the story. Well acted, well-directed. Clearly patched together with a barely coherent progression and the worst excesses of shows like Game of Thrones. It's like I have seen said with Game of Thrones Season 8, never have I seen so much hard work and talented directing and acting go into a script that was so fundamentally broken. Scenes can function on their own but not as part of the whole. Pacing and structure is atrocious, entire important bits of characterization are either out of order or simply happen off-screen,

Agree with how he did or bot but Neil had some balls to make this game the way he did. He could have easily made some feel good safe game that pleased the masses but he did what he wanted to and stayed true to the arthouse roots of the series and I give him props for that.
I mean, Tommy Wiseau had some balls to make the Room how he did too, having balls speaks nothing of quality. Why is it the two options seem to be "feel good happiness" or "realistic nihilism and nonstop pain." How about "a dark story that is actually well told, doesn't rely on cheap shocks, and is character-driven?" That is what we got in the first. On every single level except for graphics and the moment to moment gameplay TLoU is better than the sequel. Better characters, better told, the better economy of storytelling, more varied environments, better pacing, and more respect for the audience's intelligence. TLoU2 keeps trying to shock and it becomes pretty obvious by the end.

Neil was following the trend of event TV, but trying to make it a game. And in that he did succeed, there is a hell of a lot to talk about here, the game frustrates because of the sheer distance between its highs and lows.
 

THEAP99

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i am quite literally forcing myself to not do a 3rd playthrough though i want to do it so bad.. i have other games (like doom eternal) that i need to finish
 
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Dorohedoro

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There is one thing I don't get, whats the point of collecting those cards and coins? So dumb and makes for the worst and least creative achievements, legit waste of time.

Unrelated to that but showing that Druckmann is following the footsteps of Kojima:
The diegetic use of the map was close to perfect. Ellie writes on it as you play and it's later integrated into the story in an unexpected way. It's also introduced in a tricky way that makes you think it was optional but it isn't. I only wish they didn't have the marker tracking the player making it more of a puzzle.
I have to agree. It's funny because I got all the collectibles in the first game and the only reason I never got the plat was because I never bothered with the damn MP trophies. This one obviously has no MP trophies, yet I'm not sure I wanna bother with the collectibles this time. I heard a lot of them are easy to get if you use enhanced listening mode but apparently some of them are very well hidden and you need a guide to find them... :messenger_unamused:
 
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Freeman

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Oh it was poorly made in several regards, especially in the story. Well acted, well-directed. Clearly patched together with a barely coherent progression and the worst excesses of shows like Game of Thrones. It's like I have seen said with Game of Thrones Season 8, never have I seen so much hard work and talented directing and acting go into a script that was so fundamentally broken. Scenes can function on their own but not as part of the whole. Pacing and structure is atrocious, entire important bits of characterization are either out of order or simply happen off-screen,
If you think season 8 or even season 7 is what killed the show I think you are completely wrong. GoT had terrible writers and was making huge mistakes since the early seasons where they decided to completely abandon books 4+5 and start writing complete nonsense that wasn't internally consistent and made no sense (TV only watchers were usually so confused that they didn't see that nothing made any sense). It was obvious from the get go that D&D were bumbs just coasting on the strength of the book and once they were sure of themselves they started writing their own abomination of a fanfic (fanfic made by someone that didn't even read the books apparently).

TLoU2 is nothing like that, it's a completely different type of story, it's way more streamlined and way more focused. Druckmann wrote the first one too so if he was a hack why didn't it show up there? It's like being pissed that Ned ended up where he ended up and then giving up on the books or reading it completely soured by what happened.

How is TLoU2 barely coherent? Were you confused by the editing? I never felt that. I think the games is also very conscious of what it shows you and what it doesn't and what assumptions you are likely making and it plays around that.
 
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Dorohedoro

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Yeah I was playing TW2 EE on my Xbox recently and it might as well be a PS2 game in comparison to this. :messenger_grinning_squinting: Just started my 3rd playthrough with everything set to Survivor. My only concern is how stingy with supplies it's going to get, especially on Survivor+ since it was already kind of a pain in the ass on Hard+. I can see certain sections like the Rat King being rage inducing if I have like next to nothing on me.
 
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THEAP99

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I felt the same way. I tried playing a different game, but I just started my third playthrough of TLOU part II.
There’s just nothing like tlou2 for me. Everything coming together in one package is just so great. The soundtrack too. I’ll hear a song of the soundtrack come on in my playlist and I’ll get in the mood. The last of us franchise just hits different for me. Just gives me a certain feeling that I think only red dead 2 might’ve given me a similar feeling. Sadly, red dead 2 isn’t linear. God of war might’ve given me a similar feeling but the game has so much backtracking in it it’s just like ugh... nothing like tlou imo both games.

I’ve been bouncing around in my head which story is better. Part 1 or part 2’s. I think part 1’s is simpler so it’s a lot easier to perfect in a tighter package. But part 2 is just so much more interesting to me and I think a lot more accomplished piece.

i forget where I read this, it was on twitter, maybe here or reeee, but someone mentioned how like tlou1 drew clear influencers and you can like name those so easier and it’s like a lot “generic or typical” Type of game I guess?

Tlou2 clearly uses some tactics used in other games (mg2s which i really want to play now lol but probably won’t ever), but like it’s just such it’s an own piece of wildness that it’s hard to just pin point something onto it. It’s like a game u can just talk about and go on about for hours. There’s so much to take in as a whole and it’s just an unforgettable experience. That being said I think the story does rely a bit much on coincidence (like idk it’s still weird to me how they all got
back to Jackson and the farm house after that brutal fight
and maybe could’ve been paced better? Idk. I felt the game did get bluebally at times with pacing but it really worked well up with the tension in the end. Pacing can’t be that bad if I constantly want to replay the game lol. It surely gets it feel and I really only think the day ones are the slower days because it’s really about how it just progresses into craziness or redemption’ness. But when all is said and done and credits are rolling it achieved a lot to me personally and just leaves me thinking about it with chills. And wanting me to start it up all over again.

what also adds to me wanting to replay it I just love the general loop of looting and scavenging and then slashes. The enemy ai are so lifelike and I like the dynamics of the stealth and everything. The slash marks especially just add a lot more to the experience. Little details like ellie actually band-aiding her arm and seeing the blood soak through it’s just great. I love it. And oh boy the combat music soundtrack is just amazing addsso much tension.

also why the fuck don’t they try Battle Royale? The crafting and looting systemis already there in the game made. Just openup the full map of Seattle into one big bad battle royal. People can use boats, have dynamic weather patterns making it raininy and rough water.. making more bloaters or rat kings show.. come on the skies the limit. Put that damn ps5 to use and let us continue the Seattle adventure but this time against losers online
 
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bhunachicken

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I was thinking about ND potentially turning this into a trilogy. I figured that the theme of the final part could be hope. They've done love and hate, so hope would follow on nicely.

Could there be someone else out there who is immune? Perhaps a cure or vaccine exists for the virus, and game could be about Ellie having to track it down and bring it back, while others are trying to do the same thing in order to gain control over it. Such a plot would essentially see Ellie as being the girl who fulfilled her destiny of helping to cure the world of the virus.

Something like that?
 
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THEAP99

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I was thinking about ND potentially turning this into a trilogy. I figured that the theme of the final part could be hope. They've done love and hate, so hope would follow on nicely.

Could there be someone else out there who is immune? Perhaps a cure or vaccine exists for the virus, and game could be about Ellie having to track it down and bring it back, while others are trying to do the same thing in order to gain control over it. Such a plot would essentially see Ellie as being the girl who fulfilled her destiny of helping to cure the world of the virus.

Something like that?
I really doubt they’d go the cure route. It would take away some of the weight of Joel’s actions in the first game imo. Thinking about it hard to see where they go for a third game. At some point I’d like tlou to end up in other parts of the world via spin offs, but yeah they need to wrap up Ellie’s story. I don’t see it happening for a while. Probably end of ps5 gen maybe later.

well. Abby and Lev made it to the firefly island. Maybe they know someone who can do the cure. But once again, kinda takes away from Joel’s weighty decision .. I don’t know man . Ellie seems to be heading down the redemption path maybe now
 
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Geki-D

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Gotta say, playing Ghost right now it annoys the fuck out of me that when an enemy catches sight of me and I'm in slightly high grass (but the 'wrong grass') I can't just hold a button to go prone and hide. After TLOU2 the whole "You're only hidden in this one very specific type of grass" feels really outdated. It bothers me that Horizon 2 will still no doubt use this dumb pseudo-stealth system.
 

farmerboy

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I was thinking about ND potentially turning this into a trilogy. I figured that the theme of the final part could be hope. They've done love and hate, so hope would follow on nicely.

Could there be someone else out there who is immune? Perhaps a cure or vaccine exists for the virus, and game could be about Ellie having to track it down and bring it back, while others are trying to do the same thing in order to gain control over it. Such a plot would essentially see Ellie as being the girl who fulfilled her destiny of helping to cure the world of the virus.

Something like that?
The more I think about this the more I like it.

I've also thought about a third game with Abby and Lev. And it starts with an unconcious Lev and emancipated Abby in a dinghy slowly making their way, away from Santa Barbara.
 

Dr Kaneda

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Eh it's through all of his interviews. Druckmann basically changed a LOT though some of it is just from evidence in game:

  • Abby was originally the daughter of someone Joel killed in his hunter days.
  • Jackson was originally a much bigger part of the game, where you played as Abby and Ellie with it as a hub
  • Even then, the dance WAS the intro to Jackson, but was moved to the end to speed along Joel dying.
  • Santa Barbara was also supposed to be a much larger part of the game
  • Lev was originally not trans, and was supposed to die.
  • Abby was black, and not a mutant.
  • Seattle was supposed to be a lot longer, for Ellie at least. She was supposed to end up on scar island before making it to the Aquarium
  • There is evidence that some of the flashbacks were intended to be done in order. Ellie's second flashback plays like a tutorial section.
  • More evidence of cut things are the fact that the Sniper Rifle never shows up again after a full tutorial on how it works.
I mean it's obvious that a lot of those things would not have been things they changed mid or late into development. A lot of those would have been changes either very early or even in the planning stages since they had a significant impact on the game. Most obvious is Abby being white and hulky and Lev being the way Lev is. Both these things were shown in 2017 Paris gameweek trailer. That was what? A only year after the game was announced as being in development. And 3 years before release.

I think Ellie going to scar island and a longer Santa Barbara section would have been cool, but they'd have had to cut some other sections out instead to fit those in since the game is already pretty long. Would they have been better than what's already in the game? Impossible to say. I'm glad they cut the Jackson hub world thing though, sounds bad.

What evidence do you have that the sniper rifle was cut? Because it doesn't show up again? It seemed to me like it was only supposed to be a cool little set-piece. Story wise it ties into Tommy later on when he's snipping at Abby and the gameplay skill of falling bullets is used with the bow and arrow if you upgrade it to have the distance attachment. To me it doesn't seem like anything was cut.
 

Clear

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After my first playthrough I'd have given the game an 8, after my second I'd revise it to be a 9.

Its a really good game, not perfect, but it does an awful lot right.

To be truthful my biggest issue with it is something that afflicts every ND game, the commitment to a cinematic structure at the expense of a more traditionally "game-llke" construction I feel leaves a ton of potential on the table. (Think of real obvious stuff like multiple endings, player controlled event branching etc.)

That being said, I understand why ND does things the way they do, and although its not what I'd choose I simply cannot mark them down for it.
 

Shmunter

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Playing on Hard and finding it pretty easy. Plentiful resources, swift death to the hostile.

Just approaching the Aquarium. Does It become more challenging?
 

Nankatsu

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Playing on Hard and finding it pretty easy. Plentiful resources, swift death to the hostile.

Just approaching the Aquarium. Does It become more challenging?
Not at all. As someone who played it on hard it gets easier, because you intent to OP your character with new skills / upgrades.
 
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THEAP99

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Eh it's through all of his interviews. Druckmann basically changed a LOT though some of it is just from evidence in game:

  • Abby was originally the daughter of someone Joel killed in his hunter days.
  • Jackson was originally a much bigger part of the game, where you played as Abby and Ellie with it as a hub
  • Even then, the dance WAS the intro to Jackson, but was moved to the end to speed along Joel dying.
  • Santa Barbara was also supposed to be a much larger part of the game
  • Lev was originally not trans, and was supposed to die.
  • Abby was black, and not a mutant.
  • Seattle was supposed to be a lot longer, for Ellie at least. She was supposed to end up on scar island before making it to the Aquarium
  • There is evidence that some of the flashbacks were intended to be done in order. Ellie's second flashback plays like a tutorial section.
  • More evidence of cut things are the fact that the Sniper Rifle never shows up again after a full tutorial on how it works.
The only thing remotely interesting to me here would’ve been Jackson becoming a hub and more Santa Barbara. Ellie going to the island would’ve just been more backtracking which i hate a lot. I also don’t know if the dance scene opening up the game would’ve felt right
 

Shmunter

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Not at all. As someone who played it on hard it gets easier, because you intent to OP your character with new skills / upgrades.
Well that’s just not gravy. The forced listen mode is most unfortunate. Yeah yeah, don’t press the button they say, can’t not do it unfortunately.
 
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SCB3

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I've just finished the Aquarium and I gotta say, I'm not too sure on why the hate is on this so far, its more of the same from the 1st game, which is great, yea I didn't agree with the Story elements (About Joel) but it kinda works for me

That said, I'm not sure how much I have left but I'm really enjoying it so far
 

bishopcruz

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If you think season 8 or even season 7 is what killed the show I think you are completely wrong. GoT had terrible writers and was making huge mistakes since the early seasons where they decided to completely abandon books 4+5 and start writing complete nonsense that wasn't internally consistent and made no sense (TV only watchers were usually so confused that they didn't see that nothing made any sense). It was obvious from the get go that D&D were bumbs just coasting on the strength of the book and once they were sure of themselves they started writing their own abomination of a fanfic (fanfic made by someone that didn't even read the books apparently).

TLoU2 is nothing like that, it's a completely different type of story, it's way more streamlined and way more focused. Druckmann wrote the first one too so if he was a hack why didn't it show up there? It's like being pissed that Ned ended up where he ended up and then giving up on the books or reading it completely soured by what happened.

How is TLoU2 barely coherent? Were you confused by the editing? I never felt that. I think the games is also very conscious of what it shows you and what it doesn't and what assumptions you are likely making and it plays around that.
Oh no, GOT was clearly dying by around Season 5, but the actual seeds of its destruction can be seen as early as Season 2. I used Season 8 as an example because it was the most obviously bad, and I didn't want to get into a debate by using Season 5. The same problems I am talking about can be seen there, things just happen without the groundwork needed to make them feel as if they should.

And if you want to talk about Ned vs Joel... well you aren't going to like where it goes. Ned's death was the exact opposite of a cheap shock death. There are several moving pieces that are put into place to make it happen, it is shocking, but looking at the people who are involved it is the only way it could have gone. Not one person in the lead up to it acts in any way out of character, and it plays fair with the audience the entire time. People make mistakes but those mistakes are direct offshoots of their characters. He didn't randomly get caught by a pack of Greyjoys out for revenge while he was out on a hunt. Martin is a prime example of how to set up and deliver on twists and shocks, and TLoU2 does not do this at all. AT ALL. I compared it to GoT TV for a reason. It even has its teleporters for fucks sake.

Also Druckmann was not in complete control of the story in TLoU1, he just wasn't. I mean he wanted it to be Tess chasing Joel across the US for revenge with Ellie having her first kill by killing her in the end. And I never say the man isn't talented in either case. He has a great ear for dialog, (in part 1 especially) and even in this game a few scenes are VERY well done. But the structure is just off. There is both too much and too little story, in that Seattle is overstuffed, and the opening and ending acts are anemic.

The game is barely coherent in that events happen simply because they have to and characters and situations are contrived to make them. Essential story set up in Jacson was cut to make the big even happen earlier, everything after Seattle is rushed to all hell with next to no connective tissue (and that is my favorite part of the game) Major characters simply vanish and reappear whenever and wherever. This wasn't a difficult story to tell, but Druckman was too clever by half in how he told it and the work itself suffers for it.

The only thing remotely interesting to me here would’ve been Jackson becoming a hub and more Santa Barbara. Ellie going to the island would’ve just been more backtracking which i hate a lot. I also don’t know if the dance scene opening up the game would’ve felt right
Oh don't get me wrong, Seattle was already too long. More time there... I think I might have shot myself. As it is you can cut Seattle entirely for Ellie and nothing really changes. It exists to further Abby and nothing else.

As for the rest. I think that dance just does not work at the end of the game. It was written and shot as an intro to the characters, there is a reason ND showed it as their first real trailer for the game. Look how awkward the dialog is when Jessie picks up Ellie, you have to say exactly what happened the night before to someone who was ALREADY THERE. Similarly most of the flashbacks are not needed. Abby's especially are awful. Joel and Ellie flashbacks at the very least resolve the question at the end of TLoU1. And Abby's parents being killed by Joel in his hunter days would have been FAR more powerful in creating moral ambiguity. At least Abby would have a point then.

Jackson and Santa Barbara as not just gameplay locations but places for the story to breathe are sorely missed. Nearly all of Abby's character development happens off-screen, I don't mind the flashbacks for the most part but the only one I think is actually justified as a flashback is the final one.
 

bishopcruz

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I mean it's obvious that a lot of those things would not have been things they changed mid or late into development. A lot of those would have been changes either very early or even in the planning stages since they had a significant impact on the game. Most obvious is Abby being white and hulky and Lev being the way Lev is. Both these things were shown in 2017 Paris gameweek trailer. That was what? A only year after the game was announced as being in development. And 3 years before release.

I think Ellie going to scar island and a longer Santa Barbara section would have been cool, but they'd have had to cut some other sections out instead to fit those in since the game is already pretty long. Would they have been better than what's already in the game? Impossible to say. I'm glad they cut the Jackson hub world thing though, sounds bad.

What evidence do you have that the sniper rifle was cut? Because it doesn't show up again? It seemed to me like it was only supposed to be a cool little set-piece. Story wise it ties into Tommy later on when he's snipping at Abby and the gameplay skill of falling bullets is used with the bow and arrow if you upgrade it to have the distance attachment. To me it doesn't seem like anything was cut.
Well I am not arguing for more Seattle. Seattle was bloated as it was. I am arguing that Santa Barbara SHOULD have been a bigger part of the game, and we could have condensed Seattle into one day for Ellie, and honestly probably Abby too. But even then, maybe Day 1 Abby, Day 2 Ellie, Day 3 50/50 might have worked. Also not a fan of the hubs either, but Jackson needed more time, a lot more time. Santa Barbara is still the one where it just got destroyed and it showed. Huge swaths of character work are missing from the end of Seattle to the start there, and it just comes across as abrupt.

I guess the evidence I have for the sniper rifle is just the feeling I get from it. It is structured as a tutorial. It has its own set up bullet drop, and everything. It's basically a Chekov's gun that is never really fired. And without it that scene just feels rather superfluous. And that is kind of my point. A lot of the game feels like it was thrown together with what they had at a certain point in development when they realized that they weren't gonna ship if they didn't finish things up. And even in the interviews, they talk about how they moved things around constantly.
 

Freeman

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Oh no, GOT was clearly dying by around Season 5, but the actual seeds of its destruction can be seen as early as Season 2. I used Season 8 as an example because it was the most obviously bad, and I didn't want to get into a debate by using Season 5. The same problems I am talking about can be seen there, things just happen without the groundwork needed to make them feel as if they should.

And if you want to talk about Ned vs Joel... well you aren't going to like where it goes. Ned's death was the exact opposite of a cheap shock death. There are several moving pieces that are put into place to make it happen, it is shocking, but looking at the people who are involved it is the only way it could have gone. Not one person in the lead up to it acts in any way out of character, and it plays fair with the audience the entire time. People make mistakes but those mistakes are direct offshoots of their characters. He didn't randomly get caught by a pack of Greyjoys out for revenge while he was out on a hunt. Martin is a prime example of how to set up and deliver on twists and shocks, and TLoU2 does not do this at all. AT ALL. I compared it to GoT TV for a reason. It even has its teleporters for fucks sake.

Also Druckmann was not in complete control of the story in TLoU1, he just wasn't. I mean he wanted it to be Tess chasing Joel across the US for revenge with Ellie having her first kill by killing her in the end. And I never say the man isn't talented in either case. He has a great ear for dialog, (in part 1 especially) and even in this game a few scenes are VERY well done. But the structure is just off. There is both too much and too little story, in that Seattle is overstuffed, and the opening and ending acts are anemic.

The game is barely coherent in that events happen simply because they have to and characters and situations are contrived to make them. Essential story set up in Jacson was cut to make the big even happen earlier, everything after Seattle is rushed to all hell with next to no connective tissue (and that is my favorite part of the game) Major characters simply vanish and reappear whenever and wherever. This wasn't a difficult story to tell, but Druckman was too clever by half in how he told it and the work itself suffers for it.

Oh don't get me wrong, Seattle was already too long. More time there... I think I might have shot myself. As it is you can cut Seattle entirely for Ellie and nothing really changes. It exists to further Abby and nothing else.

As for the rest. I think that dance just does not work at the end of the game. It was written and shot as an intro to the characters, there is a reason ND showed it as their first real trailer for the game. Look how awkward the dialog is when Jessie picks up Ellie, you have to say exactly what happened the night before to someone who was ALREADY THERE. Similarly most of the flashbacks are not needed. Abby's especially are awful. Joel and Ellie flashbacks at the very least resolve the question at the end of TLoU1. And Abby's parents being killed by Joel in his hunter days would have been FAR more powerful in creating moral ambiguity. At least Abby would have a point then.

Jackson and Santa Barbara as not just gameplay locations but places for the story to breathe are sorely missed. Nearly all of Abby's character development happens off-screen, I don't mind the flashbacks for the most part but the only one I think is actually justified as a flashback is the final one.
I saw all the moving pieces by the end of the first games.

Joel's option were pretty limited. He chose to take a risk for a better life just like Ned chose to take (a complete foolish risk) because of his beliefs. Robb died by making a foolish mistake (extra foolish in the show). Catelyin story was a series of dumb and stupid mistakes. Jon as well was murdered from being a complete clueless idiot.

Other than Abby just happening to run into Joel (depending of how many people patrolled Jackson it looked like she had a 1 in 10 chance of finding him and Tommy instead of someone else). It's completely understandable that they would've given their names away, since they were the ones that run into Abby and what is a harmless random girl that was about to die going to do? Every story is going to have a couple of coincidence that allow it to happen, I doubt you complain about that in other stories.

The dance isn't what is supposed to work at the end. Their conversation is what needs to work.
All that Jesse say's he heard about is wrong or somewhat distorted, it actually works to bait us into thinking it was true(GRRM is a master at this and some of his best writing it made trough a distorted PoV) and we get the payoff at the end. We play the game at first thinking Ellie didn't know about the detail of Joel did (she actually knew all along) and just like that we make a lot of assumptions that don't turn out to be true, her last moment with Joel wasn't a fight, it was actually her starting to forgive him and part of why she is so set on revenge is that she probably hates herself for how she treated Joel.

Abby's flashbacks are all needed, when she show up in the middle of the game and throw into your face that your revenge is stupid it makes sense for us to see it from her PoV and that is what we get. She parallels both Joel and Abby and as a player you have to admit that you are hypocrite for being willing to forgive/understand Joel and Ellie but not Abby. The Abby part of the game had to be long, because that is what games have that movies don't, when you play as someone you gain sympathy for them. Everyone started hating the idea of playing as vile fucking Abby, but most people as they play as her let that go and focus on what is happening until Abby is just another character you play as.

All of Abby's development happens on scree, what are you talking about? We see her losing her father, we see her set on revenge consumed by her hate, we see her achieving that objective, we see how she gained nothing from it, we see her learning to understand the people she hate, we see her coming to like these people, we see her paying the price for what thing she did in her past, then at the end we see her actually being somewhat reward for showing mercy when she had no reason to.

If you are set on hating something, you are going to hate it, seems like you were not open to play the game and embrace what it was trying to do.
 
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I haven't beat the game yet and overall I'm finding it to be a very good game but the one thing that sticks out is the gameplay in general. It seems very....dated? Each area you are in has this artificial feel to it. I dont know how to explain other than that. Nothing feels natural. I dunno.

So far the story and characters are good, the brutal violence is awesome and it can get quite tense at times. It is a game that is on a level above the majority of it's peers but that may also be it's "downfall" (for lack of a better word) as well. Naughty Dog has cultivated this steady progression in it's tech and game design for years now. I get the feeling this one isn't as much a quantum leap over it's predecessor as their prior games have been.

I still have a lot of game left so these opinions may very well change but I am enjoying thr game for sure, I just think I expected more?
 
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Dr Kaneda

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Well I am not arguing for more Seattle. Seattle was bloated as it was. I am arguing that Santa Barbara SHOULD have been a bigger part of the game, and we could have condensed Seattle into one day for Ellie, and honestly probably Abby too. But even then, maybe Day 1 Abby, Day 2 Ellie, Day 3 50/50 might have worked. Also not a fan of the hubs either, but Jackson needed more time, a lot more time. Santa Barbara is still the one where it just got destroyed and it showed. Huge swaths of character work are missing from the end of Seattle to the start there, and it just comes across as abrupt.

I guess the evidence I have for the sniper rifle is just the feeling I get from it. It is structured as a tutorial. It has its own set up bullet drop, and everything. It's basically a Chekov's gun that is never really fired. And without it that scene just feels rather superfluous. And that is kind of my point. A lot of the game feels like it was thrown together with what they had at a certain point in development when they realized that they weren't gonna ship if they didn't finish things up. And even in the interviews, they talk about how they moved things around constantly.
You wanted more time in the actual community of Jackson? I don't know, I just didn't find it that interesting. Would have especially disliked it if it was a part of the games opening which was slow enough. Maybe as a flash back later? Maybe. I do agree that I wouldn't have minded more time being focused on Santa Barbara and actually getting to Santa Barbara, but like I said they would have had to cut significant parts of the earlier portions of the games to make that fit.

With the sniper rifle, again I just think it was as set-up for the later set-piece with Tommy sniping you as Abby. For me it was sort of suppose to be a juxtaposition between it being a cool experience having Tommy teach you to snipe when you're Ellie to then that experience being a threat/annoying when the shoes on the other foot and Tommy is using his sniping skills to kill you the player instead of teach you. That was my take on why it was in there. And as I said the bullet drop gameplay mechanic did feature with the bow and arrow. So for me both thematically and gameplay wise it seemed relevant.

Other than maybe Santa Barbara slightly it honestly did not feel to me in the slightest that the game was thrown together, incomplete, rushed etc.. at all. I can tell that some of the cutscenes and flashbacks might have been moved around, but I don't think that makes much of a material difference since they're ultimately still in the game. Didn't they completely rework the TLoU1's entire combat mechanics like 4 months before release? Don't think anything as drastic as that has been mentioned about Part 2.
 
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Kadayi

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If you think season 8 or even season 7 is what killed the show I think you are completely wrong. GoT had terrible writers and was making huge mistakes since the early seasons where they decided to completely abandon books 4+5 and start writing complete nonsense that wasn't internally consistent and made no sense (TV only watchers were usually so confused that they didn't see that nothing made any sense). It was obvious from the get go that D&D were bumbs just coasting on the strength of the book and once they were sure of themselves they started writing their own abomination of a fanfic (fanfic made by someone that didn't even read the books apparently).

TLoU2 is nothing like that, it's a completely different type of story, it's way more streamlined and way more focused. Druckmann wrote the first one too so if he was a hack why didn't it show up there? It's like being pissed that Ned ended up where he ended up and then giving up on the books or reading it completely soured by what happened.

How is TLoU2 barely coherent? Were you confused by the editing? I never felt that. I think the games is also very conscious of what it shows you and what it doesn't and what assumptions you are likely making and it plays around that.
LMAO. They took what was ostensibly a fantasy drama and turned it into the biggest cultural phenomena on the planet for around 8 years. Sure they might have fumbled the last couple of seasons by trying to wrap things up too quickly (versus padding it out given they were working solely off GRRMs outline notes for the last few seasons), but the idea that they're all collectively bad writers is the dumbest cunt thing I've read on this forum in a while. Thanks for the laughs there fanboy. TLOU2 was turgid mess that abjectly failed on several levels and this 'Druckmann can do no wrong' mindset is solely the preserve of the lost and the addled.
 
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Freeman

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LMAO. They took what was ostensibly a fantasy drama and turned it into the biggest cultural phenomena on the planet for around 8 years. Sure they might have fumbled the last couple of seasons by trying to wrap things up too quickly (versus padding it out given they were working solely off GRRMs outline notes for the last few seasons), but the idea that they're all collectively bad writers is the dumbest cunt thing I've read on this forum in a while. Thanks for the laughs there fanboy. TLOU2 was turgid mess that abjectly failed on several levels and this 'Druckmann can do no wrong' mindset is solely the preserve of the lost and the addled.
GoT TV show is trash and has been for a long time. D&D are absolute hacks, they are beyond terrible. The show success is exclusively the merit of GRRM regarding story, they tried to destroy his work and they succeeded.

"the biggest cultural phenomena on the planet" , sure, if you are someone who is unable to read and has no appreciation for the original work.

There we have it, you like GoT TV show and hates TLoU2, that's all I need to know from you. Next you are going to tell me you liked the Hobbit movies and Skyrim.
 
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Kadayi

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GoT TV show is trash and has been for a long time. D&D are absolute hacks, they are beyond terrible. The show success is exclusively the merit of GRRM regarding story, they tried to destroy his work and they succeeded.
LOL. Whom exactly are you hoping to convince? Also tried to destroy his story ? He was a goddamn producer on the show. I guess you're one of those sad sad wanker types who flipped tables because there were only 3 Sand Snakes instead of 7? Or some other inconsequential book BS (where are the lemon cakes!!!) It was an adaptation, because in the land of Film and TV it's necessary to consider show budgets and actor availability when you're realising a project. Still the dark truth is, if GRRM had spent way less time getting his ego stroked at fan conventions by the book faithful and generally dicking on side projects and more time bringing the book series to a conclusion (he had a 6 year lead...FFS) Seasons 7 & 8 would have been a lot better. Even forced to stay at home due to The Covid, the fat fuck still can't get his act together. He's a fucking joke.
 
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Freeman

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LOL. Whom exactly are you hoping to convince? Also tried to destroy his story ? He was a goddamn producer on the show. I guess you're one of those sad sad wanker types who flipped tables because there were only 3 Sand Snakes instead of 7? Or some other inconsequential book BS (where are the lemon cakes!!!) It was an adaptation, because in the land of Film and TV it's necessary to consider show budgets and actor availability when you're realising a project. Still the dark truth is, if GRRM had spent way less time getting his ego stroked at fan conventions by the book faithful and generally dicking on side projects and more time bringing the book series to a conclusion (he had a 6 year lead...FFS) Seasons 7 & 8 would have been a lot better. Even forced to stay at home due to The Covid, the fat fuck still can't get his act together. He's a fucking joke.
GRRM actually pointed they were making a big mistake early on and he didn't expect that they would just ignore book 4 and 5 and complete rush it. GRRM made a lot of money with the show so he wasn't going to throw them under the buss but he stopped writing his episodes for the show later on.

GRRM is a cunt, but he writes well, D&D are hacks couldn't write well to save their own lives. I have no hopes for the last book, I just want the next one and I'm good, I need to remove this abomination of a show from my mind.
 
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EruditeHobo

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This is an odd digression and seems almost designed to be uncharitable to the adaptation of a bonkers, bloated, meandering book series that even with 2 books left feels like it could potentially have no end in sight.

There were undoubtedly issues with rushing the show at the end, but they also improved hugely on a lot of the problems with the series of novels. And even in the last couple seasons everyone detests, there are really excellent and meaningful moments/episodes/arcs.

Anyways. I like both the books and the show. Just saying.

I guess the evidence I have for the sniper rifle is just the feeling I get from it. It is structured as a tutorial. It has its own set up bullet drop, and everything. It's basically a Chekov's gun that is never really fired. And without it that scene just feels rather superfluous. And that is kind of my point. A lot of the game feels like it was thrown together with what they had at a certain point in development when they realized that they weren't gonna ship if they didn't finish things up. And even in the interviews, they talk about how they moved things around constantly.
It's not superfluous at all... this sniper rifle tutorial section is doing what many things in this very meta game are doing, playing with the game format in order to subvert expectations of the gamer in order to illicit certain responses. To suggest that these bookends of the gamer's experience of the sniper rifle in this game -- being taught to shoot by Tommy on a routine patrol and then later having it be used in the way it is used in the narrative -- to claim that is somehow lazy or thoughtless or cobbled-together in some unfinished way it to really, really miss the point being reached for I think. It's no wonder with thinking like this that this particular game would upset you.

I'm not a person to hold it up as "10/10!!! Masterpiece!!!" or whatever... there are gameplay issues and story issues, in terms of pacing and bloat, I could see some of the arguments about those things specifically. But I've been lurking around this thread reading it, and you seem to be almost willfully missing the ideas, both in terms of actual story and in terms of the meta-context of gaming mechanics & narrative.

One more quick spoiler-related thought to illustrate this...
You just today compared Ned Stark to Joel, and suggested one was a complex character/story decision, while the other was some kind of simple shock kill? As if that's all it is, as if that's what defined it? I mean, if those are the kinds of conclusions you are drawing from this game I don't know how to contextualize your thinking as anything other than that of someone that doesn't get it.

And I don't say that lightly, since you are clearly an eloquent and intelligent person unlike many others on both sides of this debate. But the reality is, people aren't perfect and they have blind spots and this is probably one of yours, because most of your arguments about how this game fails, at least that I've read here late in this thread, are stunningly poor.