Could have been a cliche ending, but it would have been a good/interesting ending anyway.
I have acquired the grade of Master in The Last of Us story/character/game knowledge as I have played it through 9 times.
... I have no life.
An interesting (and harrowing) alternative to what was the ending provided by Naughty Dog, but honestly, I think the ending we got was actually the best one that could have been written. It stayed with the themes of the game while remaining open-ended enough for you to draw your own conclusions about whether you agreed/disagreed with Joel's decision and what would happen to him and Ellie in the future as a result of it.