‘Oh Ellie. They should be terrified of you.’ How The Last of Us Part 2 develops deep emotional connections and an immersive narrative journey in a violent post-apocalyptic world.
This piece of research was focused on examining the narrative journey of the Naughty Dog video game, The Last of Us Part 2. Within this game, this research specifically focused on achieving an understanding of how The Last of Us Part 2 uses cinematic plot devices to create an immersive narrative with relatability to its characters. This understanding was gained through the underpinning of appropriate available literature and a qualitative interpretivist approach to data generation. The method of data generation that was utilised in this piece of research was textual analysis. The ethics and limitations of this research were carefully considered before the commencement of this analysis. This textual analysis included five scenes from The Last of Us Part 2 – with two of these scenes including additional A and B content. These scenes captured a range of narrative elements, including character relationships, excess violence, PTSD, and the cycle of revenge. Through the completion of this research, it was found that what makes this game unique is its narrative split between Ellie and Abby’s perspectives. This allows for the moral legitimacy of Ellie’s actions to be questioned and for greater immersion in the overall narrative arc. Furthermore, this research uncovered that The Last of Us Part 2 cleverly intertwined the depiction of PTSD and its devastating effects with the cycle of violence prevalent within this game – providing real-world consequences in this post-apocalyptic world. However, this finding was unable to be fully dissected as it was only emergent during the analytical process. This finding was subsequently recommended to be explored through further research.