So I beat The Last of Us last night and I just got to say its one of my all time favorite games.  I've been playing video games for over 20 years so it takes a lot to impress this old jaded gamer, but Naughty Dog once again managed to impress me and reminded me why I play games.   Everything about this game just screams "high class".  This game is a head and shoulders above the rest and it shows.  The amazing graphics is the first thing which grabs you when you start playing the game.  Every little detail no matter how insignificant is beautifully recreated.  I cant remember how many times I just stopped what I was doing just to look at the wonderful scenery.  I spent a long time looking at giraffes.  It blew my mind.  I love the Uncharted series, but with The Last of Us Naughty Dog has improved in the graphics department by leaps and bounds.  

    Another reason I love Naughty Dog is their ability to create believable characters.  Joel and Ellie seem so real to me and their interaction as you play the game seems so natural and real.  Very few developers ever manage to create characters which feel half as real as Joel and Ellie feel.  I truly fell in love with Ellie and I didn't want her to be harmed.  I was so tense when I got to the section of the game in which Ellie finds herself in some major trouble I actually had to pause the game get up and go outside for a bit.  My palms were sweating and I was actually afraid for Ellie.  I don't think I have ever felt that way while playing a video game before.  I mean I've played games in which you as the main character have to take care of a companion and i've grown to care for them too.  Yorda in the game ICO comes to mind and more recently Elizabeth in Bioshock Infinite, but I have never really bonded in the way I bonded with Ellie. I checked some message boards just to see if anyone else felt the same way I did about Ellie and I'm happy to see I am not the only one out there.

    The Story is also amazing.  True similar stories have been done in movies and in books, but with video games you as the player are way more immersed.  This is why I think video games are a way better escape than what Hollywood could ever do.  I loved the twist and turns of the story and I couldn't stop playing because I wanted to know what happened next.  The ending was a shocker and completely caught me off guard.  I was expecting it to be your typical video game ending,but boy was I wrong.  The ending is really powerful and I found myself thinking about all day  today. I am right there with Joel though I would have done the same thing, screw everybody!  I also found it funny how this ending stayed stuck with me for awhile after I beat the game.  Usually once i'm done with a game that's pretty much it.  I put it away and move on to the next one without ever thinking about it.  I usually forget about the story by the next day.  Not with the Last of Us I'm still thinking about it and I wish some of my friends would play this game so I can talk to someone about it and share different theories.  Like I said I am an old jaded gamer and getting this hyped up about a video game story is a nice change from all the pointless FPS I have been playing lately.

    So I guess the moral of this rant is to say I freaking loved The Last of Us and everyone should play it.