Let’s get this out of the way: The Last of Us Part II won’t be out for a while. Even if someone promises us it’s coming next fall, put it in mid-2018 at the very, very earliest. With that said, the announcement at PSX this weekend was exciting, and we’re hungry for details. Here’s your first one: As hinted at the trailer, Ellie will be the primary protagonist for the game. Speaking during a panel at PSX, writer Neil Druckmann and members of the game’s cast confirmed this and some other details.
While the first game had us primarily playing as the morally-questionable Joel with a short break as Ellie, it sounds like the experience in The Last of Us Part II will, at the very least, be the opposite. Fan theories are already floating around that Joel’s role will be significantly different from that of the first game – the internet seems to have a Sixth Sense for these things lately – so it could even be that a character we haven’t yet met will be joining Ellie, though it seems very likely that she will have a counterpart. The game’s title is The Last of Us, after all.
The guard is changing.
Additionally, we learned that Druckmann’s co-writer for The Last of Us and Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, Bruce Straley, is taking a break. Not like the kind your significant other talks about at the end of Spring Semester, but like an actual break.
“Bruce recently decided to take some much-deserved time off after shipping two critically acclaimed games in the last few years,” Sony said in a statement to Kotaku.
In his place, Druckmann confirmed on Twitter that he’ll be working with Halley Gross, who wrote two episodes of the just-concluded Westworld in addition to acting on a variety of projects. Druckmann called the story “intense.”