The Last of Us Part II (TLOU2) was one of the most anticipated games in recent history, with its predecessor being hailed as a masterpiece in storytelling and gameplay. Released by Naughty Dog, the game garnered critical acclaim and a legion of dedicated fans. However, to someone who is like me, a devoted fan of the original, the ending of The Last of Us Part II was nothing short of deeply disappointing. As I promised in the previous blog, here are my reasons as to why the sequel wasn’t as good as the original. I hate it. Okay that might be a strong word. Anyhow…
Expectations and Anticipation
As the release date for TLOU2 approached, excitement reached a fever pitch. Fans were eager to continue the journey of Ellie and Joel, the beloved characters who captured our hearts in the first game. The trailers promised a gripping narrative, breathtaking visuals, and emotionally charged gameplay. Expectations were sky-high, and the anticipation was palpable.
Overview of the Plot
The game picks up a few years after the events of the first installment, with Ellie and Joel living in Jackson, Wyoming. Tragedy strikes early on, leading Ellie on a quest for revenge that takes her to Seattle. Throughout the game, players are confronted with moral dilemmas, brutal violence, and a gripping exploration of the human condition. TLOU2 is undoubtedly a triumph in storytelling, with nuanced character development and a willingness to tackle difficult themes head-on.
The Controversial Ending
🤪 Spoiler Alert 🤪
As Ellie’s pursuit of vengeance nears its conclusion, players find themselves in a climactic showdown with Abby, the character responsible for Joel’s death. However, the twist comes when Ellie chooses not to kill Abby, letting her go instead. The game ends on an ambiguous note, leaving players wondering about Ellie’s future.
Reasons for My Disappointment
I was profoundly disappointed with this ending for several reasons. First and foremost, it felt like a betrayal of Ellie’s character arc. Throughout the game, we witness her descent into darkness and obsession, yet the ending seemingly negates all that development by sparing Abby. It felt like the emotional payoff built up over hours of gameplay was undermined in a single moment.
Additionally, the narrative choice to spare Abby seemed to render the choices players made throughout the game inconsequential. TLOU2 emphasized the impact of our decisions, but the ending disregarded that notion, leaving players feeling disconnected from the journey they had invested so much in.
The ending left the gamer emotionally drained and dissatisfied. It evoked a sense of loss, as the hope of a satisfying conclusion to Ellie’s story was shattered. It was a stark contrast to the first game’s ending, which felt like a poignant yet fitting conclusion. The emotional toll of witnessing Ellie’s inner turmoil and the harrowing events leading up to the ending only added to the sense of frustration.
It’s essential to acknowledge that some players appreciated the open-ended and morally complex nature of the ending. For them, it was a bold departure from conventional gaming conclusions and left room for interpretation. Some argue that it is a more realistic depiction of the consequences of violence and the impact it has on characters.
The ending felt like a narrative misstep that undid the emotional investment in Ellie’s character and the choices made throughout the game. A more conclusive and satisfying ending could have preserved the emotional resonance of the story while still acknowledging the complexities of human nature. Ok I’ll stop…
As we eagerly await future developments in The Last of Us franchise, let us hope that the creators take into account the varied reactions to this divisive ending. Ultimately, it’s a testament to the power of storytelling and the impact it can have on players when they form such a strong bond with the characters and their journeys.