The Last of Us Part 2 was originally designed as an open-world action game that was heavily inspired by Bloodborne.
Confirmation came via co-game director Anthony Newman, who revealed during in the fantastic behind-the-scenes documentary, Grounded 2: Making The Last of Us Part 2, that for the first four or five months of development, The Last of Us Part 2 was a “purely melee focussed” game that “kept getting bigger and bigger as you explored”, as inspired by FromSoft’s fan-favourite adventure.
“When we started out making The Last of Us Part 2, Neil actually wanted to be very ambitious about changing the game almost entirely,” explained Newman.
“For the first four or five months, the game was kind of an open world inspired by Bloodborne. And it was purely melee focused, like it was all hand-to-hand combat.”
“It wasn’t just the melee combat, we were also looking at layout structure,” added lead game designer, Emilia Schatz.
“Bloodborne had a very open space that kept getting bigger and bigger as you explored. I really like that feeling that you get of mastery over the world. It starts to become almost a character in the game itself. And so, that was also something we were looking at.”
Initially, this direction came from trying to “make it as different as humanly possible from the first game as [Naughty Dog] could” but ultimately, according to Newman, “the open world thing didn’t work with the story we were trying to tell” and so this was “dial[ed] back”.
Naughty Dog co-president Neil Druckmann says he has a “concept” ready for a third and final chapter of The Last of Us series.
Talking at the very end of the same behind-the-scenes documentary, Druckmann acknowledged that whilst he didn’t yet have a story fully fleshed out, he did have a kernel of an idea that “is as exciting as [The Last of Us Part 1]”.
Earlier today, we reported that the voice actor who played Abby in The Last of Us Part 2 has revealed that not only did she receive abusive messages when the game was released, but abusers also sent death threats about her infant son, too.
Laura Bailey confirmed that the “real hardcore death threats” were so concerning, they were passed on to police, whilst her baby son – who was “born during all of it” – also received threats, too.