The Last of Us could have had a different villain

While Geoff would disagree with me, I think The Last of Us was a brilliant game – possibly my best game of the console. However, it could have followed a very different track.  Warning: spoilers within!

Creative director Druckmann explained recently that the roles of Ellie and Tess shifted over the course of development. Originally, Tess was written as a villain.  Yup, rather than being the motivation to go on the journey with Ellie, in previous ideas for the game, Joel betrayed her. This led to her pursuing him across the country, eventually torturing him.  In this version, Ellie was more innocent, making Tess her first non-infected kill (to save Joel).

Druckmann said:

“We decided it wasn’t going to be about the first time [Ellie] killed someone, it was more about this coming of age story of the impact that the horrors of violence has on her over the course of the game,”

However, the decision changed when developers decided that they didn’t want Ellie to seem so helpless. This meant making Ellie more capable, also avoiding the classic “escort mission” pitfalls. Personally, I loved the parts of the game when I got to play as Ellie – she was fantastic with her bow!

Oh, and here is the concept art for this alternative ending.  I really prefer Tess as yet another tragedy in Joel’s life.  Much more realistic, and adds to the idea of him being so emotionally shattered while keeping a strong facade.

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Author:Zoe Hawkins

Wielding my lasso of truth, I am the combination of nerd passion and grammar nazi. I delve into all things awesome and geek-tastic. I believe people should stop defining themselves and just enjoy playing games, so let's get on with it!
  • Trevor Davies

    I read that as, “she was fantastic with her bowl.” Then wondered how does it compare to Riddick killing people with a tea cup.

    • Zoe

      survival situations man… anything becomes a weapon ;)

    • Hammersteyn

      I was bummed to not see him kill someone with the can opener key

      • Gustav Willem Diedericks

        That, I must say, was also something I wanted to see :)

  • Hammersteyn
    • TiMsTeR1033

      what clicking? the game clicks while playing???

      • Spathi

        Get out of here! If you haven’t play the game yet, stay away!!!

        • TiMsTeR1033

          But but I donts haves a ps3, you love me enough to give me yours?? pweaase? I kill all da baddies for you keep you safe.

          • Spathi

            :( But without my PS3, I’m nothing!!!!!

          • TiMsTeR1033

            I will trade you my xbox 360 with custom skin on it :)

          • Spathi

            I have a Xbox :(

            But, if you can get me a PC capable of running Star Citizen on ultra at 60 fps, I’d consider your offer :)

          • TiMsTeR1033

            I dont even know what star Citizen is :(

      • Hammersteyn

        TLOU players will understand. If you ever needed a reason to buy a PS3 here it is.

        • TiMsTeR1033

          At times like this I am stuck between buying a ps3 for cheap and enjoying all the games I missed on and getting ps4 later or buy a ps4 and forget about the ps3 games….. So hard!!!

          • Hammersteyn

            Shucks you are right. A very tough decision indeed.

          • TiMsTeR1033

            maybe one of you kind souls will give me your old ps3 when you got a ps4 lol

          • Hammersteyn

            Maybe the price will come down once the new consoles are released?

          • TiMsTeR1033

            why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free? hehehe

          • Skyblue

            It really isn’t a difficult decision at all… get a PS3 now and play all the exclusives you’ve missed out on before getting a PS4. I rarely go back to older tech once I have new stuff as the graphical differences are just too jarring.

            EDIT: It’ll also let the PS4 library flesh out first

  • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

    oh man that’s awesome, but it doesn’t change the fact that Joel still has to kill Ellie in the end

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000639808167 Jamel Frazier

      SPOILER!!!! Who told you that LIE, He more like saves her in the end.

      • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

        lol i was just giving a fake spoiler…dont give real spoilers lol…..

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000639808167 Jamel Frazier

          Oh I’m sorry, it’s hard to sense sarcasm over the internet. But I see exactly what you were doing now.

  • Trebzz

    I was expecting a situation like Lee and Clementine where Joel was infected and she had to kill him or something like that, or where Joel’s daughter was kept alive and he had to choose to let Ellie die so they find the cure or not :P

    • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

      Wow dude….why did you post such major spoilers
      Fuck dude …… that’s just horrible :( I never finished all the episodes……….

      • Hammersteyn

        LOL I did the same with FC3 back in May I think. Had no idea people hadn’t finished it yet :P

        • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

          Fuck this is just turning out to be a shit day…was saving it for a Vita playthrough …. First Rule of online gaming discussions … never assume people finished a game, at the very least say SPOILER or something before posting …. Fuck this I’m going to sleep now :( :(

          • Hammersteyn

            We all learn the hard way. I was almost crucified, luckily no one could find the hammer.

          • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

            Well it us that got spoiled that are the victims :( where is our cake? ….. oh well. luckily the hammer is not here now

          • TiMsTeR1033

            I give you hammer Umar

          • Hammersteyn

            Relax bud, long weekend the weekend. Sleep late tomorrow. Feel better :) GTAV is almost here

          • TiMsTeR1033

            not soon enough man not soon enough

          • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

            F GTA …. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean that

          • TiMsTeR1033

            Its just a game, I know you buy booze drink hard and fast tell wife to dress like chinese hooker pay her 15 doll hair and then play the last of us tomorrow. wont remember anything :)

          • Hammersteyn

            Shame boet. It really seems like you are having a crap day.

          • TiMsTeR1033

            why you sad panda umar? you must smile be happy and gay. Remember day is not shit, only you can shit on day… and remember psp vita is crap play real console not kiddie toy. Good night umar Love Timmy

          • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

            I sad because game got spoiled for umar and now umar wants to rage

          • TiMsTeR1033

            Umar no finish THe last of us yet?

          • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

            no finish walking dead

          • Trebzz

            Damn sorry o.O

          • TiMsTeR1033

            me havent seen season 3 yet :( friend promised it to me been waiting long time

    • TiMsTeR1033

      So she dies! thanks for ruining it for me man!!! just kidding lol I dont even have a ps3 haha

  • Spathi

    “While Geoff would disagree with me, I think The Last of Us was a brilliant game”

    Why, what is Geoff’s take on TLOU? I’d love to know, as I currently still have respect for the guy! :P

    • TiMsTeR1033

      You have respect for Geoff he didnt even eat a chilli!

      • Spathi

        Yeah but he is Asian. And I need a Asian friend so when I make Flied Lice jokes, I can tell no that I’m no racist, I know a Asian guy :P

        • TiMsTeR1033

          Asian people eat strange things so its okay to eat Darryn :)

        • Skyblue

          “It’s fried rice you plick”

      • Hammersteyn

        Geoff could eat Darryn after Darryn eats a chilli

        • TiMsTeR1033

          But what happens later then in bathroom? eeew :(

    • http://www.twitter.com/WobblyOnion Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

      She’s mistaken; I do indeed think it’s a wonderful game – but it’s one that’s perhaps a little overhyped. Overhyped, you see, does not mean bad – but I do think the game has flaws that have been overlooked purely because of the superb production values.

      • TiMsTeR1033

        shes the cats mother? who be she?

      • Umar Kiiroi Senk?

        I have to agree with you, but the flaws honestly does nothing to bring the game down at all and should be overlooked. nothing against you saying it’s over hyped, as well…it is

      • Spathi

        Okay, fair enough. I actually feel the other way around. I think hype kinda made people judge it more harshly. It has its flaws, but for me it’s just nitpicking.

        Well, I still respect you then :)

        • TiMsTeR1033

          but why you respect a him? he call you a she

          • Spathi

            He referred to Zoe. I hope!

          • TiMsTeR1033

            he has no respect! shame on him!

        • Zoe

          that was my sense as well – i felt bad pointing out the small flaws because it felt like nitpicking. but i was also so absorbed in the story, characters and game, i didn’t mind the random ladders and swimming pallet sections ;)

          • TiMsTeR1033

            Just a question Zoe, How do you get a woman into games? my wife only likes the sims :(

          • Zoe

            not too sure when the woman is question is already an adult – i’ve been playing games since i was REALLY young. that said, i think it’s like most things with women – explain why you like the game and let her try it without telling her what to do. maybe start with something like dragon age (where combat is relatively simple)? plenty of story, characters, etc to get into. Just be prepared to lose TV/console rights when she becomes addicted!

          • TiMsTeR1033

            dragon age. hmmm Ill try that :) thank you.

          • Spathi

            “explain why you like the game and let her try it without telling her what to do. ”

            That is the crux of the matter. DO NOT, under any circumstances, tell her how to play the game. Do not offer to help her the whole time. People do not want to be judged or laughed at ever, at getting her into more gaming is to be supportive but do not pressure. If she dies 100 times at the same enemy, let her be.

            My wife enjoys certain games but it is quite random. She likes Heavy Rain, Sim City, The Sims, Lego games (co-op is great, but be patient) and Mario. The is no fixed genre though.

            PS: The above was not aimed at “women gamers” but rather at people new to gaming.

            Edit: Dammit, was supposed to reply to Timster..

          • TiMsTeR1033

            Damn we should be friends I could learn from you lol. See the problem is getting my wife to try a game….. I told her about it but its like yeah. She got into Fable 3 but i never knew she liked it till i traded it in. was a long weekend :(

          • TiMsTeR1033

            Its cool man. lol

          • Spathi

            And you should feel bad!! :P

          • Mark Treloar

            What about the horrible AI?

          • http://www.twitter.com/WobblyOnion Exalted Overlord Geoffrey Tim

            Yes, there;s that, the damned convenient magical pallets whenever there’s water; the whole “you need to scrounge for ammo, except in these sections where we give you unimited ammo because we’re a videogame” thing. numerous instances of a rush of enemies purely because VIDEOGAME. ..and tons more. Awesome game, but not the knees of the bees.

          • Zoe

            The only time the AI bothered me was when I was teamed up with that trigger happy guy in town. Otherwise, never really caused problems for me. oh, and because of my stealthy kill preferences, i never ran out of ammo… ever.

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