Finished it and I don’t think I’ve ever played a game that was so successfully playing me. I’m pretty sure I fell for every one of ND’s manipulations hook, line and sinker!
When the story switched back to Day One as Abby I was sceptical, actually that’s not true, I was borderline stroppy about it. The setup was so obvious, it annoyed me, even having Abby collect coins annoyed me - yes ND, I get it, different sides of the same coin, but fuck you if you think you’re going to make me like Abby! This lasted a while. I threw Abby into combat with a carefree attitude, almost like any damage was justified. On meeting the dog called Bear who I had a fond memory of dispatching as Ellie and the pleasure I took in hearing his owner’s grief, I threw Bear’s ball out of the cage area leaving him sad and whimpering. I had residual Ellie all over me, but to my amazement ND slowly peeled that away and by the time I was finally reunited with Ellie my feelings had become completely flipped. I’m not sure if ND’s approach to this can be called masterful or if I’m just incredibly easy to manipulate, but all I can say is that for me it worked and I applaud them for it.
From an action point of view everything after Hillcrest was being judged against that high standard. That section was really something, but I’d say everything from the sky bridge to the hospital basement with Abby was absolutely fantastic. The tension literally froze me in places, there’s an evil magic spell ND manage to conjure when they mix certain elements together that took more of me than I’d have expected to break and push forward.
We play a lot of video games but yep, this is one of the special ones.