In a State of Play presentation focusing entirely on The Last of Us Part II, developer Naughty Dog shed light on new enemies, environments and gameplay player can expect when the game releases, as well as more details regarding the story. This has given fans of the critically acclaimed original game a better idea of what to expect from the highly-anticipated follow-up to Joel and Ellie’s original adventure.
Of course, spoilers regarding the game’s story have run rampant on the Internet following last month’s massive leak revealing information regarding the game’s ending. This has lead to plenty of online outrage from those eagerly waiting for the full game to release. That said, we won’t go into any of these spoilers, instead focusing on what Naughty Dog has chosen to reveal.
The Last of Us Part II starts around five years after the previous game in Jackson, Wyoming. Here, Joel and Ellie have settled into a relatively peaceful and prosperous community where they can live a semblance of a normal life. Ellie is now 19 and is in the midst of a budding relationship with another woman. However, this all comes crashing down around Ellie when a catastrophic event transpires, implied to be caused by another human community attacking Jackson. This forces Ellie back into the treacherous wilderness of United States, which has been completely taken back by nature in the 25 years following the start of the game’s cordyceps pandemic.
According to Neil Druckmann, vice president of Naughty Dog and creative director of The Last of Us Part II, Ellie will explore different environments with varying conditions ranging from warmer climates to snowy landscapes. Despite this, he specified that much of the story will take place in and around Seattle. Years before this point in The Last of Us‘ universe, Seattle was a colossal quarantine zone. Now, it is a battlefield for two warring factions as they fight for survival and the remaining resources in the city.
The first of these communities is known as The Washington Liberation Front, also known as the WLF. This group was a militia resistance who won control of the city away from the remaining police and military forces at work. They are a highly trained, very organized group who acquired the military’s weaponry and resources after forcing them out of the city.
The second group is equally as dangerous, but for entirely different reasons. The Seraphites, or Scars, are fanatical religious extremists who can be recognized by the deep wounds they inflict on their own faces. They prefer to use ambush tactics and more discreet weaponry to win their fights, often choosing a bow and arrow over a gun to avoid detection and maintaining stealth.
It is unclear whether it was the Seraphites, The WLF or another group entirely that cause the disaster that drives Ellie from Jackson. And while we still don’t know much about Joel’s role, it does seem he survives the encounter, as he is seen in the original reveal trailers outside of Jackson with Ellie in what appears to be a cleared out WLF hideout. There are said to be other characters who will sometimes travel alongside and assist Ellie in combat, so it’s likely these characters will affect the story as well.
Then, of course, the characters will have to deal with the world of The Last of Us‘ looming threat: those who have been infected with the fictional cordyceps virus. While we’ve seen that all previously incarnations of the Infected are returning, there are also new ones coming for the sequel. It’s also unclear what, if any, these new forms of Infected will have on the story as a whole.
While we’ve learned quite a bit of new information on the game, there’s still a lot to The Last of Us Part II‘s story that hasn’t been officially revealed. Unfortunately, the story leaks have already spoiled major plot points for some players, and the situation has lead to a lot of toxicity online surrounding the game, with some people trying to sabotage the game’s launch online. Regardless, the game is easily Naughty Dog’s most ambitious title to date, so fans who want to go into the game fresh will need to be careful to avoid spoilers online from now until the game launches.
Developed by Naughty Dog, The Last of Us Part II will be released for PlayStation 4 on June 19.
Sony's recent State of Play revealed more information on the long-awaited sequel's story. Here's what we know so far.