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The Last of Us Part 2


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I went for the £15 Argos deal. Rude not to. But it's everything I expected from reading this thread last year.  It's a movie. Pure and simple.  You follow the prompts, repeatedly tapping square to move something out of the way or holding triangle to make the animation continue as you lift a door...  It's an animation. A movie.  

 

It breaks up the sections of movie with a stealth shooter game which seems much the same as the last game. But once you do that, its back to the movie.

 

Heavy Rain had the courage of its convictions to present itself as a long CGI movie that you pretend to have control over.  TLOU2 pretends it's something that it's not by insisting "this is a game" when all you're doing is walking forward and waiting until the game takes control off you.  

 

Gameplay involves moving sticks and pressing buttons.  I'm quite amazed by how much time I'm spending with a joypad in hand, not pressing anything. And when you do get to play it's just like the previous game, being stealthy, creeping up, kill the bad guys until it turns back into a movie again.  It's an amazing technical achievement but no fun at all.

 

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32 minutes ago, dumpster said:

I went for the £15 Argos deal. Rude not to. But it's everything I expected from reading this thread last year.  It's a movie. Pure and simple.  You follow the prompts, repeatedly tapping square to move something out of the way or holding triangle to make the animation continue as you lift a door...  It's an animation. A movie.  

 

It breaks up the sections of movie with a stealth shooter game which seems much the same as the last game. But once you do that, its back to the movie.

 

Heavy Rain had the courage of its convictions to present itself as a long CGI movie that you pretend to have control over.  TLOU2 pretends it's something that it's not by insisting "this is a game" when all you're doing is walking forward and waiting until the game takes control off you.  

 

Gameplay involves moving sticks and pressing buttons.  I'm quite amazed by how much time I'm spending with a joypad in hand, not pressing anything. And when you do get to play it's just like the previous game, being stealthy, creeping up, kill the bad guys until it turns back into a movie again.  It's an amazing technical achievement but no fun at all.

 

 

19 minutes ago, ukdazs said:

I couldn't disagree more. There are certainly sections that demand you travel in a specific way to progress but there are also plenty of sandbox areas where you can approach the combat in completely different ways, from total avoidance, through stealth up to absolute balls out carnage. Its telling a very specific story, so of course some actions are unavoidable but the areas in-between allow for loads of experimentation.

 

All depends on the difficulty level you play at IMO.

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2 hours ago, dumpster said:

I went for the £15 Argos deal. Rude not to. But it's everything I expected from reading this thread last year.  It's a movie. Pure and simple.  You follow the prompts, repeatedly tapping square to move something out of the way or holding triangle to make the animation continue as you lift a door...  It's an animation. A movie.  

 

It breaks up the sections of movie with a stealth shooter game which seems much the same as the last game. But once you do that, its back to the movie.

 

Heavy Rain had the courage of its convictions to present itself as a long CGI movie that you pretend to have control over.  TLOU2 pretends it's something that it's not by insisting "this is a game" when all you're doing is walking forward and waiting until the game takes control off you.  

 

Gameplay involves moving sticks and pressing buttons.  I'm quite amazed by how much time I'm spending with a joypad in hand, not pressing anything. And when you do get to play it's just like the previous game, being stealthy, creeping up, kill the bad guys until it turns back into a movie again.  It's an amazing technical achievement but no fun at all.

 

Sounds like you need to start a Grounded playthrough.

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1 hour ago, Majora said:

 

What is it about this game that inspires these kind of demonstrably false hot-takes? I don't even take issue with you not finding the combat/stealth fun. If you don't think it's fun then you don't think it's fun. But it's no more a 'movie' than a million other cinematic action adventure games.


This kind of nonsense has been spouted since the first game came out and it’s basically impossible to engage with because it’s a total fabrication.
 

You can’t argue with it because this argument is essentially saying that your experience with the game - which as you say is at its core a very standard template of a cinematic action adventure - simply did not happen. All the posts talking about the gameplay throughout the 127 pages of this topic are lies. It’s so bizarre.

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If anything, Last of Us 2 is less of a movie than most lavish, narrative-heavy adventures - it does some clever stuff with player agency and showing the consequences of your actions that wouldn’t necessarily work in a film, because in a film it’s not “you” doing it. 

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4 hours ago, dumpster said:

I went for the £15 Argos deal. Rude not to. But it's everything I expected from reading this thread last year.  It's a movie. Pure and simple.  You follow the prompts, repeatedly tapping square to move something out of the way or holding triangle to make the animation continue as you lift a door...  It's an animation. A movie.  

 

It breaks up the sections of movie with a stealth shooter game which seems much the same as the last game. But once you do that, its back to the movie.

 

Heavy Rain had the courage of its convictions to present itself as a long CGI movie that you pretend to have control over.  TLOU2 pretends it's something that it's not by insisting "this is a game" when all you're doing is walking forward and waiting until the game takes control off you.  

 

Gameplay involves moving sticks and pressing buttons.  I'm quite amazed by how much time I'm spending with a joypad in hand, not pressing anything. And when you do get to play it's just like the previous game, being stealthy, creeping up, kill the bad guys until it turns back into a movie again.  It's an amazing technical achievement but no fun at all.

 

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I'm not a cheerleader for this game by any means but, "this is a movie with a few brief bits of game and it is otherwise identical to the first game" is the shittest hot take I've heard about it, and I'm on Reddit.

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I mean, hyperbole aside I can't find that much wrong with his post. The game is action sections, sometimes slightly bigger, but almost identical to the previous game, split up with story and with the rare boss/setpiece.  @K mentions player agency, but really? Your agency amounts to either blasting everybody in the open, stealth killing, or sneaking past entirely (except you're mostly forced to kill).

 

Edit: ok @Capwn pointed out there's a few puzzles in there too, but mostly rope/cable stuff. That's actually my favourite part of the game, just exploring freely and working out how to get into places.

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1 hour ago, K said:

If anything, Last of Us 2 is less of a movie than most lavish, narrative-heavy adventures - it does some clever stuff with player agency and showing the consequences of your actions that wouldn’t necessarily work in a film, because in a film it’s not “you” doing it. 

You see I think this is one of my issues with the game. Because even though it’s a character you’re controlling doing the things the game is narratively shouting at you for doing, you have no choice in any of the outcomes. 
 

I think the game has incredible combat and brilliant moments and I totally disagree that it’s “just a movie”, but in terms of player agency and the narrative I always felt like an actor hitting my mark and saying my lines. 

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One of the best examples of how interaction complements and builds on an underlying theme is the game that The Last of Us takes its mechanical cues from. In Manhunt, you're egged on by the Director to engage in ever more horrific kills in order to satisfy an intended audience, and through the act of playing the game you become both a willful participant and the intended audience. The only option to disagree is to opt out of playing the game, anything else is hypocritical.

 

I don't think The Last of Us Part II reaches that blend of story and gameplay, but it's not without merit either. I think the most successful thing the game does is:

 

Spoiler

in switching your control to the antagonist, Abby, and then through spending time with that character and her motivations, finding success in having the player sympathise with her, and even to fight Ellie.

 

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13 minutes ago, BitterToad said:

You see I think this is one of my issues with the game. Because even though it’s a character you’re controlling doing the things the game is narratively shouting at you for doing, you have no choice in any of the outcomes. 
 

I think the game has incredible combat and brilliant moments and I totally disagree that it’s “just a movie”, but in terms of player agency and the narrative I always felt like an actor hitting my mark and saying my lines. 


That’s what I liked about it, though. Without wishing to spoil too much, I thought it showed an interesting contrast between the things you, the player, choose to do willingly, and bits you don’t want to happen but the main character nonetheless does anyway - actions that you’re forced to participate in. It portrays hugely self-destructive acts by the characters, and then plays around with the idea of whether or not it’s “you” doing it - which I thought illustrated the theme of people doing terrible things they know are wrong, but nevertheless end up doing anyway. 

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17 minutes ago, BitterToad said:

I think the game has incredible combat and brilliant moments and I totally disagree that it’s “just a movie”, but in terms of player agency and the narrative I always felt like an actor hitting my mark and saying my lines. 

That was my feeling for much of Ellie's story.

Spoiler

Abby, not so much; I think Ellie's story failed to maintain player-character cohesion for some of us, and that's why some of the more high-falutin' narrative plays didn't land.

 

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1 hour ago, Chadruharazzeb said:

 

Yeah, that's what playing a video game involves. Perhaps you're more of a board game kind of person? 

Read the next line.  What kind of game has you holding a controller but not pressing anything for 50% of the time.

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I got up to the bit just after you are riding the horse and had to give up. Lots of dumpsters post sounds like the experience I had. Holding forward to get through cut scenes, holding down buttons to open stuff, having an annoying companion who would ask every time you went into a room how you could get out, awful QTE, squeezing through unnecessary gaps, following linear paths through forests.
 

It was all so tired and boring. Felt like a bad PS2 era game with fancy graphics. 

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43 minutes ago, dumpster said:

Read the next line.  What kind of game has you holding a controller but not pressing anything for 50% of the time.

One that isn't this game? You'd think you were playing the first ten hours of Persona 4. How far did you get, incidentally?

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No, I'm saying that you can't define a game based on the percentage of time that you're pressing buttons and moving sticks.

 

In general, don't try to define what a game is and then use that stick to beat a specific example, it never goes down well. You don't enjoy what this game is offering. It doesn't mean it isn't one.

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I think saying it’s just like the first game (well duh it’s the sequel) or that it’s just a stealth action game really does it a disservice. It’s the closest I’ve ever felt in a game to actually being in an amazing and tense action thriller in which I’m directing the action.

 

The game play areas are much bigger and more open than the first game, and you can now go prone which completely changes how you approach scenarios - you’re no longer just running and ducking from cover to cover, it’s much less staccato and more fluid. 
 

And how you approach these scenarios really is up to you, the weapons you choose, whether you engage or avoid enemies, set traps, use diversions, the routes you take etc. It’s absolutely thrilling acting on the fly and experiencing how things play out differently depending on your behaviour. It made dying an opportunity to try things out differently rather than just repeating things the same over and over. 
 

So yeah it’s just a stealth action game, perhaps just the best one I’ve ever played that’s not called MGSV. 

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4 minutes ago, Stanley said:

So yeah it’s just a stealth action game, perhaps just the best one I’ve ever played that’s not called MGSV. 

It's definitely up there. How you could play 

Spoiler

Hillcrest

or

Spoiler

the whole Seraphite island and the battles

 

or

Spoiler

The Santa Barbara camp

 

and think it's the exact same gameplay as the first game... I just don't understand.

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