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‘The Last Of Us Part I’ PS5 Remake Has Sparked A Whole Lot Of Weird Debates

The final announcement of the opening Summer Games Fest showcase this week was the reveal of The Last of Us Part I, a PS5 remake of the original game. While the news about the announcement leaked early, we got to see new footage and stills from the remake that showed just how much graphics have been improved with the remake, and as a result, naturally, this sparked a whole lot of internet controversies.

There are so many points people are debating about The Last of Us Part I right now, it’s almost hard to keep track. Some of these are fanboy-fueled bombs being thrown by Xbox fans, others are more generalized complaints. And I think some carry more weight than others.

So, where to start?

  • First, people are complaining in general that we are now doing a remake of a PS3 game for PS5 which already got a remaster before this. The idea is that Naughty Dog should be spending its time on new projects rather than rereading old ground for the first time. I think this overlooks the fact that remastering or even remaking a game takes a fraction of the amount of work as building an entirely new one from scratch, so it’s not like Naughty Dog has abandoned all other projects to get this done. Plus, The Last of Us is one of the most acclaimed, top-selling PS series of all time, and there continues to be a demand for it, so why not meet that? Plus, I do think the differences here are notable with the full remake functionality over what we saw in the remaster. Also, it’s no secret that Sony has a Last of Us HBO series to promote based on the first game, and this no doubt ties into generating hype for that.

  • Another controversy? Some are saying that the new graphics look too “weird,” especially in how they portray Joel and Ellie. Naughty Dog explained they used the original saved performance capture but used their new tech to re-rig them so they more closely match the performances. This is why everything looks more like The Last of Us Part 2 this time around. Overall, from what I’ve seen, most of the time it just looks better, even if I will say yes, in some instances Joel and Ellie do look a touch older than in past games.
  • There’s actually a conspiracy theory that one of the reasons for these animation changes is that Naughty Dog wanted Ellie to look less like Elliot Page, which was a controversy back around release, as Ellie’s look appeared to be “inspired” by the actor, who accused the game of “ripping off” his likeness. But I very much doubt that almost a decade later, they’re still dealing with that issue which has been put to bed, including by Elliot himself, who ended up playing and liking the game, apparently. And Naughty Dog already changed Ellie’s look from the original debut after that whole controversy way back then. I very much doubt they’re continuing to do so for this same reason.
  • Finally, there’s the complaint that a remake of a 2013 game that’s already been remastered and has probably been purchased by players 1-2 times already at this point should not cost $70. This one…I agree with. Part of this is me never agreeing with Sony’s recent move to raise the cost of games to $70 in the first place, the other part is that yes, I do believe if there is any type of game that should sit below that price for sure as it’s a remake that Sony has to know most players have already bought once at this point. Pricing at $50 or even the normal $60 would have earned some goodwill here. $70 is a steep ask, from my perspective, especially as Sony continues to compete against Xbox Game Pass and its free offerings.

I’m sure there will be even more controversies before launch, but these are the ones just from the last few days alone. I’m looking forward to the release all the same.

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Pick up my sci-fi novels the Herokiller series and The Earthborn Trilogy.

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