Why The Last of Us Prologue Is a Video Game Storytelling Masterpiece

Before we get too caught up within the ways in which the prologue foreshadows what’s to come back, it’s necessary to acknowledge the facility of the numerous little particulars that make these intro scenes so immersive. Consider, as an illustration, the design of Joel and Sarah’s home. From the broken-in leather-based sofa, to the tiled kitchen flooring and the muddle across the workplace, their home appears to be like like a lived-in, uncannily mundane dwelling you may discover in any suburb throughout the nation. It’s so mundane, in actual fact, that you just sort of must take a step again to understand the function it performs.

That seemingly easy home offers the sport world a palpable sense of scale. When Sarah watches an explosion occur on a dwell newscast after which sees the identical explosion mild up the evening sky when she turns to look out of the upstairs window, it embeds us within the recreation world and makes us really feel like we’re in an actual place versus a sequence of designed environments. We don’t know precisely what the risk is but, however we all know that it’s actual and we all know it’s all too near this place of consolation and love that’s shortly turning into compromised.

The journey is necessary, too. We begin in Sarah’s bed room, discover the home, and drive into city, all by means of Sarah’s eyes and with none cuts or load screens. This was a formidable technical feat on the time (this can be a PS3 recreation we’re speaking about), however once more, what’s actually significant right here is that we’re spending that point as Sarah. We get the possibility to essentially know her, or, on the very least, this concept of who she was that Joel clearly holds onto for the remainder of the sport.

What would compel a person to single-handedly doom the world? That’s the query that The Last of Us‘ incredible ending forces us to confront, and it’s the query the prologue is supposed to assist reply. In the bigger scope of the story, Joel shedding Sarah informs all the things he (and, by extension, we because the participant) are about to do. As Joel grows nearer to Ellie, his desperation to not lose her like he misplaced Sarah in the end drives him to promote the world to save lots of Ellie’s life (or somewhat, preserve her in his life). Her sacrifice was the important thing to halting the fungal outbreak, however he simply couldn’t let her go, even when it meant sacrificing the lives of others. 

Joel is a person, not a monster. He’s clearly able to love and is a dutiful father, to say the least. But he makes so many unethical, egocentric choices all through the story that it turns into troublesome to defend him as a very good particular person. It’s straightforward to grasp and even sympathize together with his actions, but it surely’s far harder to justify them. The revelation that slowly emerges on his journey with Ellie is that he’s, for lack of a greater time period, one of many villains of the story. That’s a tough capsule to swallow for anybody who skilled the sport’s intro and carries the ache of Joel’s loss simply as he does.

But keep in mind at the start of the sport when he, Tommy, and Sarah drove by that pleading household on the aspect of the street despite the fact that they’d room within the automobile? Maybe that’s the second when the sport was attempting to inform us that, on some degree, Joel has been that man all alongside. Maybe it’s not all he’s, and possibly that’s not one of the best a part of him, but it surely’s part of him that may find yourself making a vital choice. It’s these little, haunting touches that make The Last of Us’s prologue an distinctive piece of standalone storytelling, an ideal instance of foreshadowing, and top-of-the-line online game intros ever.

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