The Last of Us is an ambitious project because it focuses on two main characters. The development team at Naughty Dog believes that while it will be hard to get the core mechanics of the game right, the potential payoff is worth the extra effort.
Evan Wells, the co-president of Naughty Dog, tells VG247 that, “it’s so important for us to tell the story to have- well, the story is entirely around Joel and Ellie. When we set out to make this game, we knew that was a challenge that we had to tackle.”
He adds, “The rewards are huge, because you can tell a much better story when you have other characters to play off of, so you’re not just having an inner monologue or talking to yourself. To have that dynamic and build that bond between characters across the course of an entire game is really interesting to us.”
Joel, the man voiced by Troy Baker, and a young Ellie, whose voice is offered by Ashley Johnson, will be together for most of The Last of Us and that has brought a unique set of challenges for the development team.
Naughty Dog creates an entirely new set of stealth mechanics to deal with the focus on cooperative play and the Artificial Intelligence of the computer companion has been tweaked to make him helpful.
Traditionally, gamers have been critical of titles that force a player to escort a character because the experience offered tends to be tedious.
The team working on The Last of Us wants to change the public’s opinion by making characters like Ellie important because they can get the player out of tricky situations.
The game will see players explore a post-apocalyptic world where a fungus has killed millions and infected even more.
Joel will try to evade both the tyrannical USA government and the infected, as he takes Ellie to a safe location.