What are the moral implications of Joel’s decision at the end of The Last of Us? In a world that has been destroyed by a fungal infection, can there ever be any true justice? How can Ellie heal herself from the traumas she has suffered? Can Ellie finally swim? All of these questions are equally important, of course, but only the last one got an official answer in today’s State of Play presentation all about The Last of Us Part 2. And thankfully, the answer is a firm yes.
Ellie can swim for herself now, with Naughty Dog almost leaning into the sure-to-come internet jokes as they opened the lengthy gameplay segment of the presentation with Ellie slowly walking into a river. In the first game, Ellie infamously couldn’t swim for herself with long sections of the game dedicated to ferrying her (quite literally) across bodies of water. This character quirk actually does make a lot of sense, with Ellie having grown up behind the walls and security of the Boston safe zone. However, fans found it a bit furstrating to have to find ways of getting her around such an everyday obstacle.
Now they won’t though, with Ellie coming into her own in a lot of new ways. Sure, she was able to murder people before, but never quite like this. And on top of that, she can swim all on her own, without Joel finding a board for her to ride on, or avoiding deeper areas of the map. She can even dive underwater to circumvent blockades or other obstacles. With this independence comes new dangers though, so don’t breath a sigh of relief just yet.
You can read more about the whole State of Play presentation, or watch it for yourself right here. The Last of Us Part 2 hits PlayStation 4 on June 19th.