The Last of Us Will not be Toning Down its Violence
Everything I have been hearing about The Last of Us, the PS3 exclusive survival horror type game, and the team at Naughty Dog that’s developing it has made me realize two things: First, I desperately need a PS3, and secondly, I need to talk to someone at Naughty Dog because they are awesome. Mostly because they refuse to change shit that a focus group told them to. They were told to move Ellie to the background of the box art to make Joel the focus and they refused, and now everyone is saying that the violence should be toned down in regards to Ellie because of recent events and they still refuse.
With the Newtown shooting still in recent memory, a lot of people are looking at The Last of Us, seeing the young Ellie committing and witnessing really horrible acts of violence, and getting a bit uneasy about it. When asked if the studio would be changing things in the game to react to this real world event, creative director Neil Druckmann said…
For us, everything in the game is necessary for the story. The reason Ellie is that age and the violence is that brutal is because of what we’re saying with the story. You have to buy into the conflict and desperation these characters live under. If you remove any of those elements, the story suffers, and that’s why we would never do it.
Druckmann went on to say that Ellie grew up in this world. She has been seeing horrific acts of violence her entire life, and so she has come to accept that as the way things are. Things that you do in that game, while probably really horrible to someone who lives and grew up in the world as it is now, “are just everyday occurrences for her.”
This has its story reasons, as well. Druckmann said that because all things that happen are part of day to day life for Ellie, she can “in a way, keep some of her innocence because of that.” Since Joel had lived in the world before the apocalypse, he still has his humanity and moral compass, and Ellie will get that humanity from him.
Whenever I see news about The Last of Us in my various RSS feeds, I always get a bit excited. It could just be some story about the multiplayer or some pre-order bonus, but it could also be a story about how Druckmann and his team refused to change something about their game that could hurt in the end. About how they won’t give in to peer-pressure because the story and the world they are making in the game is important to them. They are awesome.
The Last of Us is set for release on May 7th, 2013, for the PS3.
Source: Huffington Post