The Last of Us EP13: Live, Die, Repeat

By Shamus
on Oct 29, 2014
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


Link (YouTube)

I love at the five minute mark when Joel and Ellie walk outside and she covers her eyes in the bright sunlight. There are so many small touches like this. Again, it happens naturally with live actors, but it all takes time and effot and attention to detail in videogame world.

Like Rutskarn says: This post-apocalyptic economy is suspect!

If we ever do have an apocalypse, I’ll probably end up captured by bandits by Thursday. I’ll be sitting in the cannibal pot, slowly boiling alive while saying things like, “This is totally unrealistic! No way should you guys be out of canned food by now. This is not a viable long-term survival strategy! Where did all the women and children go? Why are you living in a squalid warehouse when there are presumably comfortable homes available? Why is your warehouse so squalid, anyway? Where did you get this giant pot capable of holding an adult human? THIS IS BULLSHIT!”

And then it turns out they weren’t even cannibals. They just really hate nitpickers.

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From the Archives:

  1. Thomas says:

    Episodes ago I totally suggested Children of Men as an influence for this game (because of it’s unlikeable guy taking a walking cure across a post-apocalyptic landscape in a messy semi-broken down post apocalyptic world with a kind of nitty-gritty fallible human tone), now I know someone else had similar thoughts I’m going to be smug for the rest of the day =D

    And it’s only just gone midnight

  2. Aaron says:

    also the pot will actually be a bath tub, you just smell really bad.

    in addition something that i dont think is really brought up in the game is what society has lost (except in small little tid bits) like does ellie know how to read? that could have been used to build a connection between ellie/joel/player…as long as it isnt josh he would mess that up somehow

    • Nidokoenig says:

      She knew the comic book ended with “To Be Continued” a couple of episodes ago, and while it could be that she recognised that pattern without being able to properly read it, it’s unlikely she’d be able to discern enough of the story to get so annoyed at that if she couldn’t read. Could be she can’t read and is pretending she can out of embarrassment, but I think that’s overthinking it.

    • Tizzy says:

      She went to school, didn’t she? I guess the quarantine zones still have this going on.

    • guy says:

      I would assume that the quarantine zone schools teach how to read.

      I still want to know how she learned to shoot a gun and drive. I mean, in a setting like this, “gym class” would generally be a good answer to the first one, except that people don’t seem to assume she knows how.

      • Daemian Lucifer says:

        “except that people don’t seem to assume she knows how”

        Which is weird,not just here,but in any zombie setting.Even if the government were to ban guns,self defense is something that you would teach your kid when theres a constant risk of a zombie barging in.

        Though in this case,its not people,its just joel.Probably because he is an ass or an idiot.

        • guy says:

          Tess also didn’t seem to expect her to know how to use a gun. Granted, while she was with the party they had more people and fewer guns, but she didn’t hand Ellie a gun when she opted to make a heroic sacrifice.

          I can understand why it wouldn’t be standard for her to know; the government relies on soldiers and walls to protect against zombies and doesn’t need civilians to know how to fight to keep the quarantine zones from being overrun, so they’d rather not have to deal with an armed population. If civilians don’t own guns they can’t very well teach their kids.

          It would probably be smarter for the government to have training for everyone and keep the guns in an armory in case the walls get breached or there’s a mass outbreak inside, though.

          • syal says:

            I think you guys are confusing knowing how to use a gun with being any good at using a gun. Guns take less know-how than shoes.

            • Daemian Lucifer says:

              You dont have to be good with it in order to at least have something to defend yourself with once a zombie jumps you.Just knowing how to use it is still better than trying to fight a zombie with bare hands.

              • syal says:

                I meant, “not knowing how” to use a gun is a five-second fix, and shouldn’t be the reason not to give one to Ellie. “Not wasting ammo”, “Not trusting her to know when to stop shooting so we can move forward”, and other tactical concerns are much better reasons.

                Though they should give her shivs or something.

          • Daemian Lucifer says:

            “I can understand why it wouldn’t be standard for her to know; the government relies on soldiers and walls to protect against zombies and doesn’t need civilians to know how to fight to keep the quarantine zones from being overrun, so they’d rather not have to deal with an armed population.”

            This is still the usa.I really doubt 20 years of fighting conditions would make the populace more keen to give up their weaponry.

      • Scourge says:

        Yeah. Reading is definiely good. Saves on the manpower. No need to patrol the dangerous parts of the city. just put a ‘Danger. Infected’ on it and everyone will leave it alone. That wy you won’t have some ‘stupid’ teenage kid on a dare break the quarantine and all.

      • straymute says:

        Marlene is probably who taught her since it was originally supposed to be her and some other fireflies doing this journey.

  3. Tizzy says:

    From having only watched the game, I like the way the combat feels. It looks a little bit ridiculous at times, but the way enemies will go right up to you, especially behind you, and the switch from firefight to hand to hand, gives it a desperate feel that suits the general atmosphere.

    I get the comparison to Tomb Raider (which I did play), but I don’t think the melee part of TR worked quite as well.

    • Ithilanor says:

      I like that it captures the general feel of combat from Tomb Raider without the creepy fetishizing, quasi-snuff vibe that TR’s depiction of violence had.

      • Thomas says:

        I think Tomb Raider’s combat was a little bit more high-adventure-esque. There was definitely some desperate scrabbling and it was messy and difficult, but Lara still felt a little above it if that makes sense?

        When you fight in The Last of Us, you get the sense that Joel is no different from the guys he’s fighting, except he might be a little bit better at being himself than they are. Everyone has very similar weapons, they’re similar builds and the AI is good enough that it often feels like you’re both using the same tactics. When you get into a melee fight, it normally leads to both guys trading blows with each other in a similar kind of way.

        Joel feels like a Raider whose just been alive for a very long time.

        Whereas Lara was different to the people she was fighting. You felt smarter, more capable more aware and more varied. When you struggled in Tomb Raider fights, its about Lara facing a personal challenge and overcoming her own inner demons. The AI look different, they have very different strategies and the melee combat isn’t a trading blows affair.
        ————————————
        I think The Last of Us did an excellent job of showing how much better Tomb Raider would have been without the creepy death animations. It really did give everything a slight snuff vibe. Death still feels bad in TLOU without having to fetishise pain.

        They also stopped it from feeling like TR is on a completely equal footing. Joel gets hurt and finds things hard, but he doesn’t have to go through as much pain as Lara does, and I think it does end up feeling like her gender ties into that. (Although they’re very VERY different characters in different settings)

  4. Isy says:

    Is “visceral” the word you’re looking for, Chris?

  5. hborrgg says:

    Did Ellie really just go “So you used to kill a lot of innocent people, huh? that’s cool, that’s cool.” ?

    • Ithilanor says:

      Seemed like Ellie asked it kind of playfully, Joel answered bluntly and honestly, then she tried to paper over the awkwardness as the knowledge really sunk in.

  6. hborrgg says:

    Also while we’re on the subject, these raiders are completely unrealistic. They don’t wear nearly enough leather straps or metal spikes, and they have no idea how to decorate with dead body parts at all.

    • Torsten says:

      See, you are thinking of Australian and Nevadan raiders. They know that the best clothing to wear in desert is black leather and ice hockey gear. Which there is plenty of in those areas.

  7. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Nooooo!Theyve replaced The Randy with some kid!Again!

  8. Ofermod says:

    At the end of Deus Ex HR, they complain about the economy (no discount on Praxis kits). I can’t recall if ME3’s “End of the Universe” economy was talked about at all, aside from Cerberus logistics/supply lines.

    • Alex McKenzie says:

      Yeah, pretty sure it was. That never made much sense to me either. At least in this case, you aren’t the obvious savior of the entire damn galaxy, where it made even less sense.

  9. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Ooooooh,so thats what the sugar is used for.I was wondering that ever since I first saw it in the crafting screen.

    Ummm…How does that work,anyway?Regular kitchen sugar doesnt catch fire when pure,nor does it produce much smoke when melted/burned.

    • Humanoid says:

      Well, Sugar Bombs were used to make Flamer Fuel in New Vegas.

    • Soylent Dave says:

      Regular (granulated) sugar doesn’t catch fire when it’s heated slowly (e.g. on a kitchen stove), because it caramelises before it catches fire.

      But if you heat it quickly, it ignites – and in fact converts into a much more flammable, explosive chemical (HMF) which triggers a chain reaction and ignites the rest of the sugar (which, in a confined space or container, would be explosive)

      This makes it a pretty decent ‘readily available incendiary explosive’. Although ‘fertiliser’ leaps to mind as almost as readily available and much more explosive…

      (and you could make the sugar more explosive by simply powdering it, which is just a matter of ‘smashing it with something heavy’)

    • Octapode says:

      I’m guessing it’s bad chemistry. There’s a smoke mix made using potassium nitrate and sugar, but the smoke generated there is potassium salt particles, with the sugar just serving as fuel to keep it going. I don’t see sugar on its own producing much smoke, since it’s basically carbon when the water cooks off, and will burn completely pretty easily.

      • Ithilanor says:

        That sounds about right. When I saw sugar being used in the video, I was surprised that it only produced smoke instead of making a bigger bang.

        • Octapode says:

          The actual smoke comp shoots out a plume of smoke as it burns, as I understand it, instead of just going boom and making a cloud. As you say, the sugar and explosives thing Josh has is potentially a fuel-air explosive, though I have no idea how reliable that would be.

  10. Redingold says:

    Man, having recently played through this on Grounded difficulty, I am amazed at how generous the game is being with supplies. I don’t recall ever having more than a dozen bullets while I was playing.

  11. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Wait,these raiders actually burn the people they catch?Without eating them?That one corpse in the ash pile seemed like it had some skin left(I might be wrong).A regular human has enough meat to feed at least 8 people for a day.Thats wasteful.Soooo,what DO these guys eat then?

  12. Arctem says:

    Since Youtube supports it now, will future episodes be 60 fps?

  13. And lo, did Chris endeth thine episode through thy sickest of burns. And Josh, being not in the lord’s sight, snuffed it. Amen.

  14. AJax says:

    Hmmm… Josh, if you’re having so much trouble with the shotgun guys, why don’t you try to diplomatically tell them to STOP SHOOTING YOOOU!!!

    I’ll show myself the way out.

  15. Tuskin says:

    The website on the back of the comic is real http://savagestarlight.com/ just has a cheesy movie poster.

  16. James says:

    Its weird I had died alot at this part to more than any other so far. Its just a poor place to fight i gues.

  17. Zephyr1990 says:

    One thing that is really bothering me is how the guns look when they fire and reload and the recoil animations. The starting .45 especially flies up in a really jerky and odd manner every time the trigger is pulled.

  18. djshire says:

    (say the following in a Russian accent) Josh is best game player!

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