By Gieson Cacho
Although they may not appear similar on the surface, BioShock Infinite and The Last of Us have a common premise. They put players in the role of men hired to escort their female clients to some far-off destination. In the case of Booker DeWitt, BioShock Infinite’s protagonist has to ferry Elizabeth away from Columbia and bring her to New York. With Joel from The Last of Us, he’s hired to smuggle 14-year-old Ellie away from a militarized quarantine zone amid a world destroyed by a zombifying pandemic.
The developers’ goal for both titles is to get players to genuinely care for their charges, and although BioShock Infinite was a great game, it fell short of that target. You liked Elizabeth but it was hard to bond with her. (The game is much better at creating a provoctive world anyway.) On the other hand, I had the chance to preview two levels last night in The Last of Us, and even without context, Naughty Dog appears to be more successful at building ties among the two characters.