The game starts out with Joel the protagonist arriving home from a long day at work; he lives with his daughter Sarah whose mother died giving births to her. That night was his birthday and Sarah gives him a box which contains a new watch to replace his broken one, Sarah then falls asleep so Joel carry’s her to her bed. Sarah is later woken by the phone and answers it; it is her uncle Tommy asking where her dad was which she didn’t know. You start off playing as Sarah walking through the house to find your dad. Sarah walks into his study where he just gets in from their neighbours that then smash through the sliding doors into the house and Joel is forced to shoot him.
After a few more events the game picks up twenty years later in a quarantine zone in Boston where Joel has become a smuggler with his partner Tess, they both make a living sneaking things in and out of Boston in exchange for extra food rations or any supplies that they may need. A deal one days goes south with three men attacking Tess so Joel and Tess go after their boss a gangster named Robert for stealing all their weapon’s. They then find that Robert has sold their weapon’s to a rebel group named the Fireflies, whilst walking out of Roberts den you find Marlene the leader of the Fire Flies who offers them twice the stock of weapon’s to do her a job.
The both accepts and turns out the must escort a girl named Ellie out of the quarantine zone to a Firefly group, during the job the run into soldiers, infected and other groups of savours all looking to kill them. The make their way out of the city running into soldiers that they must sneak past but who are on high alert so they go into an office building that ends up being full of infected they must either sneak past or fight their way through. Once they get to the Fireflies location they find that the military has already killed them and then Tess reveals to Joel she has been bitten she makes Joel promise to get Ellie the a different location to find some Fireflies and he does so him and Ellie take off while Tess holds back some soldiers to let them escape but ends up dead herself. This is when Joel and Ellie’s true journey begins and along the way they meet friends old and new as well as hiding from crazed survivors looking to kill anyone and take their stuff, not to mention the load of infected roaming each place that they go to.
The game is a 3rd person action-adventure, the controls are easy to use and remember the left stick is used to move around, the right stick is used to move the camera which can move 360 degree’s which helps as you never get a bad camera angle and you have the ability to slightly look around corners. Using L1 will zoom in the view of your gun and R1 will shoot unless you are not holding L1 you reload. There are a few quick time event’s in the game these are more so used for bashing doors open that are blocked by debris but are used in combat sometimes but not so much that you may get frustrated by it. Triangle is you action button that you will use to interact with the world around you such as picking up loot, opening doors, grabbing enemies and triggering sequences between you and your companion. The square button is used for melee combat where you will punch the enemies if you do not have a melee weapon on you, X is used to climb up and over obstacles and circle toggles your stance from standing to crouching.
Selecting weapons can take some time as at first you can only have one primary and secondary weapon selected at first but later in the game you can make another primary and secondary holster which does come in really handy as it reduces the time to select other weapons. If you do run out of ammo in your gun be sure you are clear of enemies or they are far away so you have enough time to get it out of your bag, I would suggest reloading all your guns every chance you get even if you don’t wont to use it then and there because ammo can be for and few in-between at times and it will help you in a stick situation. You can also upgrade Joel with pills you find and have different options to choose from.
The enemy A.I is done very well they will take cover at every opportunity they get and use that to fire at you reducing the space you can shoot them back and if you rush them they will widen the gap by backing up and shooting at you in the process. They will also try and flank you whenever they get the chance meaning you will have to take note where they are as they do spread out on both sides of you so beware of where you are and the possibility of being flanked when you are taking cover. You do have the ability to see where enemies are when they are making a noise due to Joel’s hearing ability but this is balanced out when they stop making a noise you are not able to see them.
They also respond to when you make a noise so if you shoot one the rest will come to where they heard the shot come from so sometimes it is best to be a stealthy as you can in situations, as well as them carrying guns they also carry melee weapons and will rush at you to take you out and some also appear at times with Molotov cocktails to flush you out from behind cover. If you are sneaking past there is a cut-off point from when they can’t see you to when they can see you and if they do they will notify the rest of them but you will know if they are looking at you as a distinctive sound plays to warn you, the same goes for if you injure one and don’t kill them they will shout to signal the rest of the enemies as well.
The infected in the game come in four types there are runners that can see and hear you, they are the fastest of the three and you have the ability to fight them off all of the time, they also moan with the sounds making them sound like humans. The second kind of infect are Stalkers they have the same alertness of runners but are more deadly. Clickers are the third type they are completely blind but make a clicking noise that bounces off wall to navigate such as bats, their faces don’t look human due to the fungus that has grown from the infection. Their high sense of sound mean’s you have to move very slowly to get past them or they will attack and when they do there is only a very small chance you will be able to get them off you. Bloaters are the final type they are bigger than the other infected due to all the fungus that has grown on them and use the same clicking method to find you as clickers, they can take a lot more damage than any other infected and will throw spore ball’s to hurt you and if you get too close just grab you can kill you.
The A.I companions are done very well too there will be parts where they will lead you and do it at a good speed such as running whenever they can so you don’t get frustrated waiting for them to catch up or lead you. When you are leading them they follow your lead with them staying out you way the majority of the time and when you crouch they will crouch too making it easier to sneak around enemies, there where point where we were sneaking past enemies they did not notice the A.I companions even though I was the only one in cover which in my opinion is good as there is nothing worse than getting spotted because the A.I makes a bad or dumb move.
They will shoot at any enemies that or shooting at them and will also help you out if you are grabbed by getting them off you and you can do the same, some companion’s will also give you ammo sometimes but not too often.
There are a good amount of weapons you find and use throughout the game that hits that middle spot for a post-apocalyptic setting as there is no factory’s or people to make them. The weapons include 9mm pistol, revolver, shotgun, hunting rifle, baseball bat, poles, nail bomb, shiv and a bow to name just a few you will find and use during the game.
There is a fair amount of ammo for each gun but you will find yourself using every gun you have as well as melee weapons and hand to hand combat whenever you have the chance to save your ammo. There are also work benches, tools and parts you will collect to upgrade for weapons and have the ability to have multiple weapons equipped at the same time but you will need a certain tool value and amount of parts to do so.
Over all the graphics where very nicely done the characters and environments looked quite realistic and all the animations where very smooth I didn’t have any issues with the. Even when you were in the cities there was a lot of vegetation that added lots of green to the game and there were other colours added in such as on cars and wallpaper in houses so the game didn’t look all grey and bland as you might have expected. The cut scenes where done using GCI but I didn’t mind this at all they were done to a very high standard and there was not a single issue with one, they were not that long either so you didn’t feel as if you where sitting watching a movie or T.V show.
Troy Baker done a great job voicing Joel as Joel was from Texas and so was Troy, his accent made Joel sound like that true Southerner (well at least to someone not from America) he was able to conveys a lot of feelings and emotions of Joel over to the player and you will notice it. At times he can go from a dark tough character to a nicer caring character.
Ashley Johnson also done a great job as Ellie they gave her that typical teenager personality so there was a lot of swearing, calling people names and being stubborn and it was all great at times you would be laughing at the stuff she said and the way she said it and other times you would be a bit surprised from her. The rest of the cast done a great job too none of the characters had any bad voice acting and where all given their own personality and they were all conveyed very well and you could tell everyone was different to each other.
The game audio was nicely done as well all the atmospheric sounds fit in well such as birds, snow blizzards and dripping water. The sound of the guns and other objects such as planks falling, bins rolling and horsed running sounded great and made it feel as if it were a real thing.
Overall I would give the game 10 out of 10 and would recommend this to anyone that owns a PlayStation 3, the mixture of detailed and high standard of story and the amount of combat in the game would suite anyone that’s after a lot of story or combat. The combat works similar to that of Uncharted so any fans of that series would enjoy this game and be able to see the similarity’s at some points. The story itself was very gripping and there was a lot of twist and turns in it to keep anyone on their toes, with the amount of twists and turns in the story it helped keep the game nice and fresh even if you were to play it for a long sitting. So if you a fan of Uncharted, zombie style games, shooters or gripping story I would suggest you definitely pick this game up and give it a go you will not be disappointed.