At the very end of Sony’s opening conference at PSX, Shawn Layden, chairman of Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios, walked off stage to one final reveal: The Last of Us Pt. II
Neil Druckmann, Creative Director at Naughty Dog, made a statement on the playstation blog:
“I can’t tell you how satisfying it is to finally be able to say that Ellie and Joel are back for another intense, harrowing, and emotional adventure. Like many of you, we have a deep love for the world of The Last of Us and its characters, and while a sequel may have seemed like a foregone conclusion, that wasn’t the case. We knew that it needed to be a story worth telling and, perhaps more importantly, a story worthy of Joel and Ellie. After spending years on different ideas (and almost giving up), we finally uncovered a story that felt special—a story that evolved into an epic journey.”
Both Druckmann and Layden put emphasis that the game is very early into development and that “the game’s release is a ways off”, so don’t expect anything soon – I imagine a 2018 or 2019 release. I don’t care though. Joel and Ellie are back! All aboard the hype train.
As far as the Title goes (Part II), I like it. The first game plays out over several Acts, and ends on such a huge cliffhanger that a second part feels much needed. It’s not the end of Ellie and Joel’s story, and although it picks up several years after the events of the first game, there is still much to be told and discovered about these characters.
I know what I’ll be replaying this weekend.. hint: The Last of Us