THE LAST OF US: PART I / DEVELOPER: NAUGHTY DOG / PUBLISHER: SONY INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT / PLATFORM: PS5 (REVIEWED) / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW
Since its release in 2013, The Last of Us has cemented itself as one of the greatest games ever made with countless GOTY awards, record sales, a masterpiece of a sequel and has influenced pop culture so much that we have an HBO TV series on the way. So it was only fitting that now, with the incredible advancements in technology with the PS5, we get a "from-the-ground-up" remake of the PS3 classic with The Last of Us: Part I. 20 years after the initial outbreak, Joel, a survivor of the cordyceps pandemic, is tasked with transporting Ellie, a 14-year-old girl, across the fungal-infected wasteland of America as she may be the key to humanity's ultimate survival. Along their journey, the two form an unlikely bond as they are faced with some truly horrific and soul-crushing moments that will change their soul, along with the players, for the rest of time.
For those who have played the original, you may be wondering if it is truly worth the full price tag. Easy answer: YES! The original 2013 title was a masterpiece of its time back on the PlayStation 3 but with the power of PS5, every aspect of the game's quality of life is improved exponentially. Every motion is smoother, and the lighting and reflections evoke a reaction from the player as if you, as Joel, are truly in the midst of the beautiful yet haunting world. The combat is fluid and intuitive and the inclusion of The Last of Us: Part II's crafting system adds a new dynamic to the experience. Also, as an added bonus, the superb Left Behind DLC is included in this stunning package.
Whether you are a diehard TLOU fan or a new member of the apocalypse, The Last of Us: Part I is worth every penny and revisiting this world and these characters is an experience you are unlikely to forget for a long, long time. Naughty Dog are true masters of the craft and the entire TLOU franchise is a pure masterpiece.