This game deserved every perfect score it got. I believe that. But after I finished the game, I thought to myself Could this game had been any better? It made my whole gaming collection look mediocre. I'm struggling through my backlog (thanks, Naughty Dog!) because all I could think about is my epic adventure with Joel and Ellie. And the question still somehow found its way into my head: could this game possibly be any better? What do you all think?
Naughty Dog said they had to cut content from the game... so yes, it actually could have been better.
From the OP, I'm assuming this isn't a post for trashing the game if you didn't like it, but for suggesting how it could have been improved even though you did. Apologies if I'm wrong!
My biggest "complaints" were linearity, a feeling of missing scenes/levels and very limited carrying capacity.
That last one was/still is easy to fix: add a Survival Skill that lets you carry more resources and/or items, and a "holster" Ammo belt that lets you carry more bullets. Also, let us craft arrows out of blades (again, requiring a new Survival Skill to do so).
The first one is the hardest, because it's clear ND wanted to tell a specific story and that in many ways the game is more of an Interactive Movie than a game. Not in the Heavy Rain way, perhaps, but certainly heavy on the narrative. That's fine, and gives the story and characters a lot more resonance and power. But that needn't have prevented more open areas to explore or even a few "hubs" with side-quests. Nor does it mean no player choices, such as deciding to tell the truth or lie, or who to save when you have two people struggling with Infected in your sights (for random examples).
As for "missing scenes", I'm talking about the huge, jarring gap between Summer and Fall, and to a lesser extent the other season breaks. No cutscene, just teleportation to a new area! This is the one time I felt something was ACTUALLY cut out rather than a conscious developer choice (such as no alternate endings, limited capacities or linear levels). The game isn't short, but it isn't long either, especially because it's so Point A to Point Z, so more content in these obvious gaps would have fleshed it out more.
Oh, and for all the hype, TLOU multiplayer is just deathmatch and team deathmatch with a hint of metagame. But then, I don't really care about multiplayer, especially when the single player experience was so tightly focused here.
None of the above means I didn't enjoy TLOU, or that it was a bad game in any way... but nothing's perfect, and as great an experience as it was (I'm seriously feeling a bit depressed that it's over now!), it could have been even better. Of course, that's just an opinion.
Examples of video games that are far far better than The Last of Us and make TLoU seem mediocre in comparison: Final Fantasy VII, Xenogears, Super Mario 64, Super Mario Bros 3, Super Mario RPG, Metroid Fusion, Metroid Zero Mission, Mario & Luigi series, Super Metroid, REmake, RE4, RE2, Zelda Ocarina of Time, Donkey Kong Country, Donkey Kong Country 2, Final Fantasy IX, FFX, FFIV, FFXIV, Tales of Symphonia, Tales of Graces F, Tales of the Abyss, Tales of Vesperia, Lost Odyssey, Lunar Silver Star Harmony, Goldeneye 64, KoTOR, KoTOR2, Baldur's Gate series, Champions series, Legacy of Kain, Demon's Souls, Dark Souls, Deus Ex, Twilight Princess, Link's Awakening, Wind Waker, Metroid Prime, Metroid Prime 2, Castlevania SoTN and all other Metroidvanias, and countless other games that are actually video games are far better than your B movie wannabe drivel.
"It made my whole gaming collection look mediocre."
I take this as implying that you are basing the quality on graphics. Sorry, I'm just assuming that you are a new gamer, and they also tend to judge quality based on shallow reasons.
I have this crazy idea that people might have a different opinion than yours, but what are the odds of that happening?
I agree with you a bit there. I have a bunch of Xbox games, but when I played The Last Of Us it made me think, 'What have I been playing'.
I mean seriously this game has knocked down a lot of my top favorites, and I'm am an old schooler in some ways.
My notes so far, updated as I was going through the game (from Thursday and I am not finished with TLoU yet)
Oh, wow, a turnstile! Now here is innovation in gameplay!
RANT REVIEW The Last of Us - I hope this isn't Chris's blood or Guarding Tess
SOME OF THE VERY WORST AI I HAVE EVER SEEN IN A GAME
How the hell did it score so highly?
Uncharted / I Am Alive Hybrid
+ swivel chairs really swivel
- interactive movie
- horrible "gameplay"
- enemies are recycled *unless some are human clones*
- seeing children being killed is supposed to be fun? Games have gone a long ways since games like Kirby.
- restrictive scripting *walking really slowly and talking for added cinematic effect* (why can't I play a game how I want to play the game? Why restrict me?)
- WHY CAN'T I RUN?!
- horrible story *shouldn't this be on the SYFY channel?
- Nolan North
- took out a guy on the stairs and he was floating in midair
- female Joel keeps walking in place on the stairs
- female Joel ran right past a few enemies and they did not take notice
- bad enemy AI
- graphics are not half as good as originally hyped
- enemies are not perceptive or bright
- why do you keep telling me to close the door? Shouldn't Joel know to do this by now?
- shot enemy in head 5 times and he didn't die
- I was hidden, how'd they see me?
- can't hide bodies
- wow the AI is horrible. they don't even see Ellen Page when she's directly in front of one of them.
- just killed my first goomba with awful QTE
- Oh, a leveling system with skills. What is this trying to be, an RPG?
- How do they not get infected, with fighting all the goombas?
- I was behind the clicker, why wouldn't it let me grab it? Oh wait, I don't have a shiv, so I die a cheap death.
- the enemies are stupid
- Ellie cannot swim, yet got across the flooded subway
- can't see in the subway tunnel. screen is green and black
- I can only carry like 10 bullets until it's FULL? You kidding me?
- hanging upside down. Shooting goomba but he's not dying.
- so cheap being bitten if you don't have a shiv
- (bug) white spots line the top of my computer monitor when using Joel's superpower where he can see through walls (only on one area, so far)
- human enemies run toward you when you point a gun at their face? Whut?
- random f bombs, random "i hate this crap"
- Why do they ALWAYS choose the hardest route?
- Ellen Page saves Joel's life and he STILL treats her like crap and isn't thankful? Whut?!
- <b>They stole the plot to "The Crazies"!</b>
- Why are they trying to kill the "tourists" so badly?
- ugggh, she got in my way while i was sneaking around and i couldn't move out of the way from being seen
- Do enemies have a tracking beacon on Joel? How do the enemies in Pittsburg follow them so close? I don't get it.
- Do my teammates actually freaking do anything? Do they actually try and shoot enemies?
- Are you kidding me - running from a turret firing a machine gun and surviving??? **bleep**??!
- story is horrible (conversation between Harry and Ellen Page)
[really bored. trying to find my way out of this hotel in Pittsburg is driving me crazy. gonna eat and sleep and come back to the "game", at another point]
* Now, I'm guessing that the spores were some kind of military experiment of some sort?
* Oh let me guess, Ellen Page's blood carries the key to a vaccine?
* Didn't 'I Am Alive' do this game first?
The Last of Us is like all the other current gen games. What gives with the hype?
So you are saying that you either A) suck at video games or B) Just enjoy trolling ppl with complaints that literally make no sense whatsoever.
So when people talk in terms of like 'linear' or 'interactive movie'. I'm not quite sure what people are trying to get at. I mean anything with a plot will have a course the player must follow.
Every game within it's own context or concept is linear.
Survivor mode could have been more challenging, my only gripe really. Maybe ND could have a Survivor + mode where you're not allowed to die throughout the game, but can keep all stuff from the last playthrough and you get a huge big fat "unlock" ie, play the whole game as Ellie or something when you complete the game.
 ok die through out the game is a bit extreme, so lets say each chapter...die and you get sent back to the beginning of the chapter.
The AI wasn't as good as Naughty Dogg made it out to be. You strangle people 5 feet away from someone and they don't hear all that noise? Or when you get detected and the enemy seemingly just forgets about you after like 2min. I thought their should've been parts where you interact with both infected and human enemies but, it never happened. And I disliked how the mid to end parts felt rushed. Summer lasted the longest (it was my favorite part) and then each chapter gets progressively shorter. The segment with Tommy could've been alot better - wasted opportunity. The game also had you skip from one part to another with little if any idea of what happened between that time.
Also when holding someone as a human shield, why don't they try and escape when you're shooting their buddies? That never made sense to me. I always thought they should resist when being held hostage and that Joel could eventually unlock a skill to subdue a guy with 1 pistol, while using the other to point at other enemies.
I do believe TLoU could have been better and scarier. Maybe ND could have turned up the gore a notch or added some jumpscares.
There are something they could've added to it a bit. I feel like the story was complete, but the jumps ahead in the cutscenes felt kind of weird to me.
I heard it may have had to do with the Naughty Dog studio being divided to finish up Uncharted 3, while working on The Last Of Us.