Hands on: The Last of Us Remastered

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Hands on: The Last of Us Remastered

With The Last of Us Remastered’s PS4 release just weeks away (July 29th), I dove into a pre-release version of the game to see exactly how Naughty Dog is leveraging PS4’s hardware to upgrade last year’s biggest Game of the Year winner.

First, there’s the immediately noticeable bump in native screen resolution. The jump from 720p (PS3) to native 1080p (PS4) gives the visuals a major shot in the arm. The crisp new presentation banishes those nasty jaggies to the margins, while higher resolution environment textures adorn the lovingly crafted post-apocalyptic environments.

The Last of Us Remastered

But the kicker is the new framerate. I’ll admit to being at least a bit skeptical on hearing that Naughty Dog would target a smoother, more fluid 60 frames per second for The Last of Us Remastered. I wondered whether it would add a distracting layer of artificiality, that it might somehow interfere with the game’s cinematic look and feel. Luckily, based on my hands-on experiences at a recent media event in New York City, those concerns feel entirely unwarranted. Played at the higher framerate, The Last of Us Remastered has a silky smooth feel that makes aiming and camera control feel more responsive and natural.

Conveniently, the PS4 version was shown side-by-side with the original PS3 game. Curious, I picked up the DualShock 3 and panned the camera around for a few seconds, before hastily switching right back to Remastered. It’s nice to see that Naughty Dog is giving players the choice to lock TLOUR to 30 frames per second — which PlayStation.Blog’s own Ryan Clements currently favors — but for me the higher framerate is no contest. I suspect this one will boil down to personal preference.

The Last of Us Remastered

The Last of Us RemasteredThe Last of Us Remastered

Then there are a slew of subtler visual details. Lighting quality has received a boost, with improved shadow detail. Joel and Ellie’s in-game character models also look more detailed, sporting higher resolution textures that allowed me to see the fabric weave in Joel’s filthy flannel shirt. The 1080p presentation also helped me spot subtle visual details I’d never noticed in the original PS3 version, like the way tiny streams of blood trickle down Joel’s arm when he’s injured, or how rats weave erratically through garbage-strewn ruins.

The gameplay remains unchanged, though the higher framerate does lend a feeling of increased responsiveness. The most notable difference is that the L2 and R2 triggers now control aiming and firing — and yep, you can switch back to the classic L1 and R1 controls if that floats your boat.

The Last of Us Remastered

Though I didn’t get a chance to try out the multiplayer mode (a personal favorite), the campaign is looking mighty promising. The Last of Us Remastered will come complete with all previously released DLC, including the excellent story chapter Left Behind. And at a reduced price of $50, it’s a good bet for new PS4 owners who missed out on one of the best games of the generation, or seasoned TLOU veterans eager for another dose of Joel and Ellie.

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29 Author Replies

  • Stoked for this. First playthrough here I come!

  • “that it might somehow interfere with the game’s cinematic look and feel”

    Are you kidding me? There is no circumstance where 30fps is better! I thought we were past this…

    Tell me that these videos look less cinematic http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-2014-watch-uncharted-4-and-the-last-of-us-at-60-fps

    jesus tapdancing christ….

  • Please, please, please, please think about releasing this and the Uncharted games on Steam once the sales slow down. I am not asking for concurrent releases, but I would love to play this and the Uncharted games on my PC. I think I am not alone here and now that this game runs on x86 architecture, it must be easier to port. I will even donate to a kickstarter if you need it!

  • Got it preordered come to me baby.

  • Amazing they got this to 60fps. I’ll be locking it to 30fps for Vita remote play, so that’s a welcome feature!

  • With this remastered PS3 game costing $50. Does that mean every PS3 remastered game will cost $50 or below? Like GTA 5, maybe? Also, please consider making digital games cost lesser than their retail counterparts. I think buying digital is awesome, but the avantage it has is that it just saves you 5 seconds between starting a game up. More people would go digital if you would make it worth their wild. Agreed?

  • I cannot wait for this. I’ve really wanted to replay The Last of Us for the last month or so, but knowing it’s on it’s way on PS4, I’ve held off. But it’s just so difficult! My pain is real.

  • Ellie in glorious 1080p HD and 60fps? I might have to actually double-dip here when I get the PS4… ^,..,^

  • I may buy this on ps4 and give it another run. loved the story and haven’t played the Ellie expansion solely bc you guys announced it for next gen so I figured I’d play it on next gen graphics. also, I want to support amazing developers

  • I have a question that’s been on my mind for a while now and since it’s been confirmed now that L2 and R2 are used for shooting: What buttons are assigned for sprinting if L2 is used for aiming?

    Is L3 used for sprinting instead? Or is it L1?

    • L1 is sprinting now! Of course, you can swap back to the old L1/R1 mode for firing and sprinting will revert to its old placement on R2.

  • I’d like to see a video of this game running on PS4, when can expect a direct feed video?

  • Can’t wait…I 100% the PS3 version and have over 8 days real time in the online portion of the game. I’m looking forward to killing you all in the near future :D

  • @adachan_1 What are you on about? They make PlayStation games, the only way you’d see a PS4 game on PC is if it was a Sony PC game first done by Sony Online Entertainment.

    Once PS5 is out you will be able to play this on your PC on PSNow anyway, so there you go, just wait for PS5 and PSNow on PC.

  • “Please, please, please, please think about releasing this and the Uncharted games on Steam once the sales slow down. I am not asking for concurrent releases, but I would love to play this and the Uncharted games on my PC. I think I am not alone here and now that this game runs on x86 architecture, it must be easier to port. I will even donate to a kickstarter if you need it!”

    Port begging for first party exclusives. What have we come to?

    Buy a playstation if you want to play the games. http://imgur.com/ijyh8ej

  • So hyped about this one. Never had the chance to play it on PS3. I’m not the “pre-order guy” type, but this was the exception.

  • After watching The Last of Us gameplay on the PS3 I’ve decided to give the PlayStation a try. PS4 coming in this summer and my first experience will be TLoUR.

  • This is my favorite game of last generation and arguably one of the top three of all time. I’m ready to platinum this baby all over again :)

  • Will there be a discount for people that bought it digitally for the PS3 from the PSN store?

  • I reserved this a few months ago and paid 60 dollars for it, but I received an email a few weeks ago saying that I would receive a $10 refund. Does anyone know if the 10 dollars will be a PSN credit, or an actual credit card refund?

    • This should be a credit refund – an email from PlayStation should be on the way soon with confirmation.

  • Does Ryan prefer the locked 30fps because it can’t maintain 60 frequently? Or just some sort of artistic preference?

    • He really likes the “cinematic” look at the lower fps. As for the targeted 60fps – it looked like it maintained it very steadily from what I played. I detected no drops.

  • PRE LOAD PLEASE ! there is still time !

  • The Last of Us will look outstanding on the Playstation 4. I’ll be sure to pick this up later on down the road.

  • Because I want to share some screens I’ll double deep this !

  • The defining game of the generation. I wonder how long it will take to see another game that nails down performance, atmosphere, character development, and weighty, smart gameplay as perfectly as TLOU did. I haven’t seen anything close from another studio before or since, so maybe it’s up to Naughty Dog to deliver brilliance once again.

  • I’m really looking forward to playing this. I never got to finish the original PS3 version because it kept crashing my PS3…it was the only game that did that too, there never was a fix released for it :(

  • When does the early access for the multiplayer start? The PS Store doesnt give a date so ive just been assuming that it starts the friday before the game comes out

  • I hope it’s not a laggy 60fps that frequently drops below. I can’t wait if it has a perfectly smooth frame-rate. I already pre-ordered and ready to go.

  • Yay better resolution and frames for 50 bucks. Meh.
    Tomb Raider Definitive > this.

    • Way better textures, shadows, lighting, and character models too. I just finished Tomb Raider Definitive Edition and loved it – this seemed right in the same ballpark to my peepers.

  • For those that are wondering about preload, The LOU does have the play while you download feature so you wont have to wait long.

  • Did you guys make any changes that should be there like, Ellie not being invisible to enemies? No? Yeah I figured so, too much work.

    • Same game, upgraded presentation and some new tweaks and features, but no big changes to the core gameplay.

  • @cubbielovr I got a credit card refund about 4 days after that

  • #TeamL1R1

    Analog buttons should be for analog actions. Thanks for allowing us to still use the “proper” layout. :)

  • Undefined_Virtue

    Still have not played this one for PS3, much like the Uncharted series.
    Loved Golden Abyss, but it was free on Plus.

    Will not be upgradiing to PS4, possibly ever with the lameness of lack of features, and PSNow looks like its great if you prefer to rent (I don’t).

    Maybe I’ll pick up a physical version one of these days when its cheap.

  • Any PS3 to PS4 upgrade program? Would consider double dipping as the game is awesome but not sure I’d want to spend another $50 when I still own my PS3 and the original. Would pay a nominal fee though to be able to have a better quality game on the PS4, plus there’s remote play. I won’t be able to play this via Playstation Now as I’m in the UK and no sign of that coming here for at least another year.

  • I purchased a PS3 Last of Us Bundle and have not opened the game yet as I am also waiting to see if there would be some sort of an upgrade program.

    If it is a digital only upgrade is there anywhere that I can exchange the bundled disc for the digital copy?

  • @32 It’d already confirmed that there is no PS3 to PS4 upgrade.

  • YES! I’m so excited for this one and have mine pre-ordered! Still, it would’ve been nice to get a digital upgrade of some sorts for those who purchased the Season Pass on the PS3 version of the game :(. Oh well! Either way, I don’t mind!

  • I know one of the things I have been wondering is the initial load screen seemed to take FOREVER on the PS3. Any better on the PS4 remaster?

    $50 is still too steep for a upgrade of I game (and DLC) that I currently own on my PS3 so I won’t be buying until it drops in price. I want to support remasters but I don’t want to support single game remasters for $50. If you disagree, you disagree and that is cool.. not trying to defend my stance.

    My rule of thumb.. $40 for a remaster collection. $20 for a remaster like this since I already own the game. Absolutely would pick up at $50 if I didn’t already, though.

    • I respect that. It seems like there are a ton of PS4 owners who never owned a PS3, so I think this is a killer option for them. Having played both TLOU and now a bit of Remastered, i’m definitely double dipping.

  • One of the best games I ever played on my PS3… cannot wait to play it on my PS4! Day 1 is going down

  • Since I bought the PS3 version digitally with all DLCs, I just do not want to spent another $50 bucks for a game I practically own. How about the $10,- upgrade option? Would love to play I again but 50 is bit too steep.

  • Clements is weird.

  • Best campaign in a video game since ever. Best multiplayer in a video game since ever. Will gladly buy it again for my PS4 (when I get it, that is—waiting for the glacier white PS4/Destiny bundle), and I’m really looking forward to all the new stuff: better resolution, better framerate, developer commentary.

    I played through the campaign like ten times and found new things each and every time, despite trying my best to find everything each and every time. Love the story, love the gameplay (I will be keeping my L1/R1 as aim/shoot, thankyouverymuch). I’m level 260 or something like that in multiplayer and still having loads of fun with it (I just hope many of the latency issues and glitches will be fixed in Remastered).

    I already had the Season Pass for my PS3 version, so none of the DLC will be new (though it would be a wet dream come true if you made even more map packs for Remastered, but I won’t hold my breath; I know you guys are busy with other things like the new Uncharted).

  • “No upgrade path, though DLC is cross buy”

    Sid, what you mean DLC is cross-buy? I thought all DLC was included in Remastered?

    • All the expansions are; I believe the multiplayer cosmetic upgrades (hats) aren’t bundled in. Shoulda been clearer, sorry.

  • Please tell me there is going to be a discount for people who already own it digitally via PSN on the Playstation 3!!!!

  • Sid,

    Which version would you go for, the retail copy or the digital version? I’m sitting on the fence about it.

  • i own it digital with season pass, is really a pity that you are not offering a discount for people like, i guess i will have to wait for a sale to pick it for $20 or less, or even better to be free on PS+

  • Will we be seeing PS4 gameplay of it soon besides a commercial or a small clip?

  • As someone who never owned a PS3 (only own a Vita and a PS4), and as much as I would LOVE to play this game for the amazing story-telling experience, I’m going to have to pass. After researching and discovering the MASSIVE amounts of swearing that is included and involved in this game, it’s not something I would be willing to support and bypass while trying to play. And muting the entire game obviously kind of ruins the experience.

    Nobody ever says “I wanted to buy that movie/game, but it just didn’t have enough swearing in it.” Cursing has never caused a person to buy a game or see a movie, but it DOES cause people to pass on them. Swearing a couple times throughout a movie/title? Sure. But literally in every couple sentences…it doesn’t make much sense to me. It’s unfortunate to see that there’s not a profanity filter to cater to both preferences.

    FYI, I’m 30 years old, have a family of 3 kids. However, I only play video games in the evening when the kids are already in bed. So either way, they wouldn’t be hearing or seeing anything in this game regardless, however, it’s a personal decision that I choose not to be a part of.

  • I brought the game full price on ps3 + all the dlc and it was great


    I’ll spend my money on something else because eit really feels like something should have been done for ps3 owners of the game. You have to know many people feel slighted now and won’t buy the game at full price.

  • Are the trophies for this the same as for the PS4 or did they give us a new set of them?

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