i’m worried about the last of us 2, and i want to tell you all why.
it’s been several years since i played the first one when it came out, so my memories of it aren’t too clear anymore. i loved the story, i liked the gameplay well enough, but mostly by the end it was the intense narrative around joel and ellie that really had me going. the multiplayer was rad too.
fast forward to the modern day. there’s a last of us 2 trailer with somebody getting severely beaten with a hammer. yesterday i see a gif of a women in the game hung up with a rope, her shirt lifted up, and somebody running a knife over her stomach. i was like … “huh?”
i searched my admittedly foggy memories of the first game, trying to remember any heinous scenes of violence or sadism, and i couldn’t recall any. was the first game also big on torture porn and i just erased it from my memory?
i’ve changed quite a bit as a person since the first game out. violence in general is more off-putting than it used to be, but this kind of slow, sadistic, particularly nasty violence that seems to have become more prominent recently really puts me off these days. i only vaguely remember the ending of the first game, but i of course imagined myself playing the second, curious about where the story would go with joel and ellie. now i’m kinda waiting for impressions to see just how nasty of a game it is, and might end up avoiding it entirely.
so… what’s the deal with the last of us 2? why all the torture? is this game-of-thrones-ification of videogames? what is happening? i realize i’m only referencing two scenes in the game (which will certainly contain much more than that), but still … these are the two pre-release scenes i’ve seen, and they’re both super fucked up. this worries me. does anyone feel the same way?