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Thread: The Last of Us (PS3)

  1. #76
    Thing What Kicks
    Registered: Apr 2004
    Location: London
    Yup, always try to start console games on the highest difficulty available, especially when they're from studios like Naughty Dog. I feel like I'm missing out on the full experience if I'm playing on Normal or lower.
    I quite like rushing things and meleeing them, and in that respect it feels VERY much like the Uncharted games. So yeah, when I can't sneak, I'll hit things rather than use precious ammo.

  2. #77
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2007
    Location: free koki
    My lack of experience with controllers is definitely showing, I've got the difficulty set to Pussy and I still barely hit anything when shooting. Not doing that well when I get mobbed and have to pirouette the camera around, either. So up until this point The Last of Us is presenting itself as a stealth game to me, whether I like it or not.

    I've put just a couple of hours into it, my progress being rather slow for the aforementioned reasons. The visuals have their pluses and minuses, characters are well presented but environment textures are relatively low-res. Can't see any AA going on and that does become apparent at times on 1680x1050. Not yet blown away by the level art, and I am hoping that the writing picks up and I get a bit more invested in the characters as we move on, this is just the beginning, after all.

    Also, fuck "encounter" checkpoints. Bioware's latest titles wouldn't let you save while in combat, I've had to put up with them in Bioshock Infinite, now here, and if I end up getting Metro: Last Light later on, guess what. I'm getting tired of this stuff real quick, I wanna save whenever I damn well please, and that includes in the middle of combat.

  3. #78
    Thing What Kicks
    Registered: Apr 2004
    Location: London
    I've just completed it and am gathering my thoughts about it. Some initial spoiler-free thoughts: astonishingly good production values, incredibly linear, meaty combat, slightly clichéd story, surprisingly stealth-heavy.
    The rest may take some time. Needless to say, it's far from perfect.

  4. #79
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2004
    OK, so, I'm thinking this is gaming's Citizen Kane moment in the sense you're much, much better off watching it then playing it.

    Instant death zombies, stupidly low arbitrary ammo limits, melee weapons that break quicker then the ones in Dead Island.

  5. #80
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Quote Originally Posted by Ostriig View Post
    My lack of experience with controllers is definitely showing, I've got the difficulty set to Pussy and I still barely hit anything when shooting. Not doing that well when I get mobbed and have to pirouette the camera around, either. So up until this point The Last of Us is presenting itself as a stealth game to me, whether I like it or not.
    No man, it's hard to shoot. Don't worry - its not you. The game is really hard. The aiming is shaky which is why you can upgrade it and a lot of the enemies move really fast and erratically. The runners come screaming around a corner and don't necessarily move in a straight line so they are really hard to hit.

    I think thats the point and that its supposed to be tough.

    My problem is supplies and that may be because I'm playing it on Hard. I have no binding so I cannot create shivs and I haven't found any more for aaages. This means Clickers are a real problem for me.

    What is low about the ammo limits? Perhaps I've not reached the limit on any yet. The instant kill Clickers are fine, imho. It makes you more wary. In any case you can upgrade to be able to fight them off.

  6. #81
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2004
    Well, for example, the limit for the revolver is 18. 12 in reserve, 6 in the gun. That's not a lot.

    But mostly, it's nonsensical on both a game level, and a theme level. If I manage to stealth kill effectively through a section, I think I should be rewarded by being allowed to stockpile resources for a later time. Having it so low that I can actually hit it means that I've got far less reason to try to excel - there's no payoff.

    From a thematic level, it's completely insane to believe that this guy wouldn't make room in that backpack of his for extra ammunition. Just bizarre.

  7. #82
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Ah, I see. Same with crafting items too - very low limits.

    Neither of this have affected me really, yet anyway.
    Telepathy is not mind reading. It is the direct linking... ...of nervous systems... ...separated by space.

  8. #83
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2007
    Location: free koki
    I'm also miffed at the arbitrary inventory limits, they don't make sense in the diegesis and they're a pretty cheap way to pad out the "survival" part of the game. Stuff like scissors and alcohol, fair enough, maybe they're big, but I wasn't impressed when I ran into the revolver ammo limit last night. Good thing he's carrying a brick around, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Subjective Effect View Post
    No man, it's hard to shoot. Don't worry - its not you. The game is really hard. The aiming is shaky which is why you can upgrade it and a lot of the enemies move really fast and erratically. The runners come screaming around a corner and don't necessarily move in a straight line so they are really hard to hit.
    Well, that is reassuring. I do find it curious that this swivel-cam and aim-to-shoot combo seems to be so popular with console titles, I played Tomb Raider on the PC and even with a mouse and keyboard I still found the shooting to be subpar. The thing is that unless you bolt the character's facing direction to the camera cursor you can't really do firing from the hip, but I can't figure out what the mechanical advantage is to having a free rotating camera.

  9. #84
    Thing What Kicks
    Registered: Apr 2004
    Location: London
    Didn't really affect me either, as I played it very punchy / pipey.
    Whenever a game tells me to conserve ammo, I immediately explore just how effective beating the snot out of things can be, and in The Last of Us, that turns out to be "Very effective, thank you very much."

    So, as promised, thoughts have been gathered.
    I'll spoiler tag stuff where appropriate.
    Let me start with a disclaimer: no matter how negative my opinions appear to be, don't get me wrong. This is a very good game and you really should look at playing it at some point if you have a PS3.

    Now for the real stuff.

    First off, I'm glad they hid trophies away until completion. It would have really spoiled the mood to have had constant pop-ups notifying you how many things you've found or monsters you've killed. Keeping trophy notifications turned off was a great decision.

    I can't understand why people would replay the game, especially how much they'd like you to. Completing the game opens up a whole bevy of replay difficulties. The problem here is that the story has been told and it won't be any diffferent a second time through.

    Minor subtle ending spoiler in this paragraph: Sarkeesian's recent "tropes" videos, as mentioned in a previous post of mine, have really coloured my vision regarding videogame stories, and The Last of Us struggles to escape the "Damsel" trope and ultimately fails. What a shame. It's quite a moving example of the Damsel trope, but still that trope, just the same.

    Spoilers regarding Ellie and David (read if you've finished this section): David's section and playing as a 14-year-old psychopath with a knife was bad ass. It kind of tainted things a bit further on where Ellie was still proclaiming surprise at the violence of Joel's actions. After all, she had just mercilessly stabbed a veritable army of goons herself. Repeatedly. But they didn't shy away from a kid doing these things to survive, and they pulled no punches when you failed and Ellie got killed. Her deaths are just as gruesome as Joel's.
    In this section, Ellie is just awesome. Stabby stabby stabby. Stabby.
    Also, Nolan North was David? Wow, really didn't recognise him! Fantastic work there Nolan!


    Mild spoiler regarding Ellie (safe to read if you've gotten outsideof the first QZ): her being the key to a cure for the infection is a lazy zombie story trope and this is where Walking Dead had it over on The Last of Us in spades; Walking Dead just tells a human story about a man and his adopted daughter. The Last of Us makes it about saving the world. If I wanted that, I'd play any one of the multitude of power-fantasy games already out there of this kind.

    Major end spoiler here: HOWEVER, Joel lying to Ellie at the end does give the story some punch. It makes his choice all the more obviously selfish.

    While a replay for me isn't in the foreseeable future, I wonder how much of a difference a low violence playthrough would make, if any. Especially concerning David's story and his assertion you've killed lots of his men.

    One thing I hate about the linearity of Naughty Dog's games, and this is something the Uncharted games could be just as guilty of: It can actively punish exploration by locking areas behind you if you nudge too far forward. This means if you're undecided between 2 paths, the game can lock you out of some rewards if you unknowingly go too far down the story path.
    The biggest offender here for me was during the sewer sanctuary area when the paths seem to split. You and Ellie seem to go one way while Henry and Sam appear to go another. Ellie opened a gate for me saying "Voila", at which point I thought I was missing something else so before entering the gate, poked my head along the other route to see what I was missing. When I saw the water room, I went to go back to the gate that Ellie had opened only to find my way blocked. I had missed out on something purely because I was being curious and trying to cover all exploration bases. I hated Naughty Dog at that moment, and this highlights the problems with developers scripting games too tightly; it removes player agency.

    Shortly after the sewer sanctuary is an open street section where you're pinned down with a sniper.
    While I liked sneaking from building to building, I hated that I couldn't get an angle on the sniper as Joel had suggested. There was no sniper to aim at, just an unmoving gun in a window that shot back at you. This was incredibly lazy; they should have at least let you take out the sniper only for him to be replaced with another. It really jarred with the otherwise high production vales, taking me back to the days of FPSes experimenting with new ideas and quite often getting them wrong because of engine restrictions.

    I'm also not sure that the genre fit the story very well. It could have done with being more open-world, less third-person-shooter. In the end, it's basically search area, kill guys, cutscene, rinse, repeat. It's incredibly polished which makes that easier to swallow, but it really is quite restricted as a game.

  10. #85
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    Hey, if anyone in the U.S. has finished up the game and would consider a loan, send me a PM. Maybe we can work out a trade/swap or something too.

  11. #86
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2013
    Location: NY, US
    I have started watching some Let's Plays of this lately and while overall this game looks quite good, I have some issues with a few things and I figured I'd just note them here.

    • The AI. While combat is handled rather well, stealth is not. I have seen a few instances where the player would strangle a guy and then the AI would just open fire on another thus blowing the cover. Also, the AI's just start talking about random things while sneaking up to a group of hostiles which really kills the immersion.
    • The ammo limitations are ridiculous. In a world where ammo is so scarce, coming across ammo that you can't pick up because you're 'full' makes no sense. He's got a backpack that looks at most 1/3 of the way full, and yet with only 18 or so bullets for a gun you can't grab more ammo. Not cool.
    • Exploration is superficial and slows down the pace of the game. There really isn't much to explore, it's just an extra room here and there with everything pretty much laid out in front of you. It seems more tedious than rewarding to go out of your way to pick up supplies, but you have to do it. I don't know how others feel about this, but it really bugs me for some reason.


    All that aside, the storytelling is still fantastic and the atmosphere is great as well. The people I'm watching play aren't that far into the game yet, so we'll see how the rest pans out...

  12. #87
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Nope, the AI it's good.

    The sorting starts because you are seen and don't know it and your AI buddies engage the enemy AI before you.

    And exploring is fine.
    Telepathy is not mind reading. It is the direct linking... ...of nervous systems... ...separated by space.

  13. #88
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2006
    Location: Hamilton, New Zealand
    The fact that the AI cannot see your companions, or at least Ellie, while you are sneaking around had led to a couple of funny moments. The best was when I noticed a couple of thieves, who were chatting about us, coming towards the stairwell I was hiding in. So I retreated quietly back down the stairs, lying in wait at the bottom. Ellie decided to just walk down WITH the guards, as in side-by-side, which was silly enough by itself but then she decides to start a conversation with me about what those very guards where just saying.

    I also kind of broke the AI in another area where Ellie covers you with sniper fire. I stealthed around and took out everyone unnoticed but no cut-scene was triggering to move to the next area. It was then that I noticed that there was a guy that I had missed so I made me way over to him. He was quietly standing in a room, seemingly unfazed that one of his buddies was 'sleeping' at his feet. So I choked him out.Still no cut-scene but then I noticed another guy I had missed on the other side of the street, just standing around. What the hell was going on? Then it clicked - these where the reinforcements spawns for the combat that was supposed to have taken place. I managed to take all of them out but 2 without raising the alert and even then Ellie only got one, non-fatal, shot off at some guy's ass. Needless to say the following cut-scene with its "Good job, Ellie" sentiments kind of fell flat. I mean, she pretty much just sat there and watched my crouch around for about 15 minutes.

    Despite all this I am very much enjoying my time with The Last Of Us.

  14. #89
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2013
    Location: NY, US
    That's hilarious! I wish game developers would figure these scenarios out while beta testing with civilians and then have contingencies built into the game. I understand that this is only worthwhile up to a certain point, law of diminishing returns and all, but when the game touts that you can choose to be stealthy OR trigger-happy, you'd think they would prepare for you to go all stealth like that. Oh well, they are minor issues that don't really detract from the overall goodness of the game.

  15. #90
    Funny thing about the girl being the cure.

    I haven't even played the game, and in fact know little about it except for the basic premise and I already guessed that was the case.

  16. #91
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2013
    Location: NY, US
    Yeah, I also thought it was pretty obvious that Tess was going to die rather early on. You never really saw her in any of the promotional stuff so I knew she wouldn't last long.

  17. #92
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2006
    Location: Hamilton, New Zealand
    Finished it and, wow, that last scene and exchange is fantastic.

    "Okay"

    The game though? A very good 3rd person shooter with some nice exploration/scavenging/crafting elements but still beset with the same problems as any other. The die/restart cycle does not do narrative heavy games like this any favours and a lot of the combat is unnecessary and overlong, being merely an obstacle you overcome to get to the good bits. So, despite the brilliance of some of the characterisation and story, the magnificence of the location design and just overall polish, I can't see myself playing through the whole thing again for a long, long time.

  18. #93
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    Quote Originally Posted by Malf View Post
    Minor subtle ending spoiler in this paragraph: Sarkeesian's recent "tropes" videos, as mentioned in a previous post of mine, have really coloured my vision regarding videogame stories, and The Last of Us struggles to escape the "Damsel" trope and ultimately fails. What a shame. It's quite a moving example of the Damsel trope, but still that trope, just the same.
    Having just finished TLoU, I can understand the minor niggles people have with certain bits but here, I don't see what you mean. The entire Ellie/David sequence was meant to show how she's able to take care of herself, and she does that ably. Joel doesn't save her, he comes along just in time to get both of them out of there.

    And yeah, Nolan did a fantastic job as David. Then again, he was one of GlaDOS's spheres in Portal 2, and The Penguin in Batman: Arkham City, so the man clearly has talent.

    Mild spoiler regarding Ellie (safe to read if you've gotten outsideof the first QZ): her being the key to a cure for the infection is a lazy zombie story trope and this is where Walking Dead had it over on The Last of Us in spades; Walking Dead just tells a human story about a man and his adopted daughter. The Last of Us makes it about saving the world. If I wanted that, I'd play any one of the multitude of power-fantasy games already out there of this kind.

    Major end spoiler here: HOWEVER, Joel lying to Ellie at the end does give the story some punch. It makes his choice all the more obviously selfish.
    But it's not a power fantasy. The game puts you in this head space to tell you that people are flawed and ultimately make the wrong choices; that's what makes them human. The ending is perfect, because it's Ellie's tacit approval to the lie - which she knows is a lie. Her Boston story is the lead-up to that. The game was never about 'saving the world'; hell, it doesn't even let you make that choice in the end. It'd be another thing if the game played the 'mankind in peril, and you can save it' card for cheap attempts at character drama, but there's nothing cheap here. Everything was earned, including Joel's initial resistance to projecting the image of his dead daughter onto Ellie, and then failing anyway. I'd say in terms of emotional complexity, the acting and the script outdoes TWD.


    One thing I hate about the linearity of Naughty Dog's games, and this is something the Uncharted games could be just as guilty of: It can actively punish exploration by locking areas behind you if you nudge too far forward. This means if you're undecided between 2 paths, the game can lock you out of some rewards if you unknowingly go too far down the story path.
    The biggest offender here for me was during the sewer sanctuary area when the paths seem to split. You and Ellie seem to go one way while Henry and Sam appear to go another. Ellie opened a gate for me saying "Voila", at which point I thought I was missing something else so before entering the gate, poked my head along the other route to see what I was missing. When I saw the water room, I went to go back to the gate that Ellie had opened only to find my way blocked. I had missed out on something purely because I was being curious and trying to cover all exploration bases. I hated Naughty Dog at that moment, and this highlights the problems with developers scripting games too tightly; it removes player agency.
    Yeah, that's an irritating thing when it happens, but there are other games - like Remember Me, which I'm playing at the moment - that do it to a far more egregious level. You could even read it as a gamification of choice and consequence, even if you didn't know you were making a choice by simply moving forward, but that'd be a bit of a stretch. Still, it's not something that'd actively change my opinion on either ND or the game as it's a very minor thing, so I'm sort of nonplussed that it could generate such a negative reaction from you.

    Shortly after the sewer sanctuary is an open street section where you're pinned down with a sniper.
    While I liked sneaking from building to building, I hated that I couldn't get an angle on the sniper as Joel had suggested. There was no sniper to aim at, just an unmoving gun in a window that shot back at you. This was incredibly lazy; they should have at least let you take out the sniper only for him to be replaced with another. It really jarred with the otherwise high production vales, taking me back to the days of FPSes experimenting with new ideas and quite often getting them wrong because of engine restrictions.
    I agree, I kept trying that spot from different angles, but when I zoomed with a scope, I could see there was no one manning the gun. A pretty odd miss in a game that's usually more polished than most.

    I'm also not sure that the genre fit the story very well. It could have done with being more open-world, less third-person-shooter. In the end, it's basically search area, kill guys, cutscene, rinse, repeat. It's incredibly polished which makes that easier to swallow, but it really is quite restricted as a game.
    Survival horror template. As there's been a massive dearth of survival horror games of any real quality for the past bunch of years, I'd rather have that than another point and click adventure like TWD (if only for variety's sake, TWD is very high on my list of games with fantastic narrative), but it could have done with a bit of trimming in terms of combat encounters. You could see it was being padded out for the sake of length in a lot of places. The incidental detail is tremendous, however, and makes inching through easier to swallow most of the time.

  19. #94
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    Also, over at Ars, I just came across an interview with Nate Wells, the Lead Art Director on The Last of Us. I'm sure we can agree that TLoU is pretty exceptional when it comes to art design and direction, and more than holds its own when compared to anything Quantic or Crytek ever came up with.

    It's a pretty good read because it goes into a nice amount of detail over various points of his career, from when he started out working on the cutscenes for Thief: TDP at LGS and then moved on to Irrational for SS2, Bioshock and Bioshock: Infinite, and then onto The Last of Us. It even mentions Irrational's lost game... The, uh, Lost, and he waxes eloquent about the direction they took with SWAT 4:

    "So we conceived the world as an East coast city—but it’s not an East Coast city—it’s an East Coast city through the lens of David Fincher. It’s like Seven. It’s always dark, it’s always rainy and things are always unbelievably grim.

    One of the very first missions you go to this Chinese restaurant which is under an overpass, it’s like it’s in Queens. It’s this horrible little restaurant and upstairs is an apartment which is being leased to the person you’re trying to find. You get to the apartment and it’s dirty, there’re clothes and beer bottles everywhere, a game console, and then you go into the bedroom and see that there’s this little child’s playpen. So you know there’s this horrible, dysfunctional, probably abusive family living here. The guy you’re looking for is in there, and depending on your tactic you either arrest or kill him—and that’s it. That’s it! It’s just this ugly, ugly, ugly place to be!"
    Last edited by Sulphur; 7th Sep 2013 at 18:07.

  20. #95
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2008
    Location: Budapest, Hungary
    > a game that's usually more polished than most.

    Woman sidekick constantly clipping through the main character <-> being more polished

    Choose one.

  21. #96
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    c) Fuck off.

    Contribute, or don't post. We've had enough people being stupid for shits and giggles already.
    Last edited by Sulphur; 9th Sep 2013 at 09:02.

  22. #97
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2008
    Location: Budapest, Hungary
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    c) Fuck off.
    ^youngster being angry at the internet

  23. #98
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Lyon, France
    You do know that presumptions make you look stupid right?
    Like the presumption that Sulphur is young and that you are qualified to tell everyone the meaning of their own response.

  24. #99
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2008
    Location: Budapest, Hungary
    Quote Originally Posted by faetal View Post
    You do know that presumptions make you look stupid right?
    Your opinion of me is relevant to the topic, because reasons.

  25. #100
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Lyon, France
    I don't have an opinion of you, but your comment about Sulphur being young because he decided to be snippy with you, has all the credibility of a dog in a cape.

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