So Joel rolls up his sleeves, and Tess walks around with bare arms. This is silly. But it doesn’t bother me as much as this:
Watching the episode after recording, I see that Joel’s metal object (a pipe, I think) snaps in the middle of combat. Look, I understand the need for the player to gather and manage resources, but that is simply not good enough as a reason for having heavy-duty objects snap in half after a few hits. Neither is the “well, maybe it rusted!” excuse. Get a wooden bat, and see how long it takes you to snap it in half by pounding away on a mattress, punching bag, or other things that give and bend the way the human body does. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but I am saying it’s not going to happen after five swings. It’s certainly not going to be common. And I don’t care how ripped you are, you are not going to snap a metal rod on a human torso. Guffaw.
We’ve got bullets, guns, potted plants, food, pills, bricks, shivs, and documents. The player has lots of crap to gather up. Please don’t add this ridiculous nonsense to a game that’s trying so hard to be taken seriously. I could hand-wave it (like so many other mechanics) if it made for good gameplay, but melee weapon degradation was an annoying contrivance twenty years ago, and it hasn’t become fun since then. Now it just looks silly.
Having complained about all that, I do like the approach to combat that this game takes. Most zombie games have you fighting waves of them, but TLOU keeps it small, focused, and tense.