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‘The Last of Us 2 Remastered’ review: A fair enough deal as a $10 upgrade

Gelo Gonzales

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‘The Last of Us 2 Remastered’ review: A fair enough deal as a $10 upgrade



It's a no-brainer if you're a big, big fan

Disclosure: Sony provided a copy of the game for this review.

MANILA, Philippines – You’ve all heard it: it’s too early for a remaster of the 2020 PlayStation survival megahit, The Last of Us Part II. (You can read our full review here of the original.)

You can pixel-peep, and maybe see the tiniest bit of improvements, but the main graphical difference here is that the remaster now supports native 4K, as opposed to the older PS5 version that upsampled from 1440p to 4K. Frame rates have also been improved. That’s all well and dandy but for most of us, it’s hardly a big deal. 

Replaying TLOU2 via this remaster though, I’m reminded at how amazing the game looks. It’s been 4 years but this is still one of the most gorgeous games out there. And you know what they say, often a big part of the credit lies in having a strong, purpose-driven art style. 

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The game is a $10 upgrade if you already have the old game, whether that’s on PS4 or PS5. If you’re a big, big fan, it’s a no-brainer. This is the definitive version of the game, with the best visuals possible, and the few extras, which while nothing truly major, should make a fan happy.

The biggest of these extras is the new roguelike game mode, No Return. These feature randomized, branching stages where you are given a goal such as to kill all enemies, or survive multiple waves of them. At the very end of each run, you face a boss – one of several that you’ve seen from the campaign. Die once, and it’s game over.

You don’t carry over skills like say, Hades, that you can use for future runs. What you get are unlocks as you play such as new characters, new bosses, new enemies, and new in-game challenges called Gambits. 

The Last of Us Part II is known for having very intense, engaging combat and survival sequences. This mode puts that element front and center. Be warned: the mode is just as heart-pounding as I remember. 

It’s not the relaxing romp that you might want after a busy day, but rather a real challenge that no doubt will find a hardcore group of enjoyers. 

There’s also a free play mode for the guitar. I played it for a few minutes, and was done with it. But I know there’ll be a group of players who’ll be trying to do sick covers using this mode, just like some did in the original game. 

The other big thing is The Lost Levels mode. These are sequences in the game that didn’t make it to the final product. Director Neil Druckman provides some commentary, and what’s most interesting are the developers’ notes that you can activate as you play through these short sequences. It’s a nice little bonus, but nothing more. 

Whether you’ll appreciate all of these depends on how big a TLOU2 fan you are. I loved the original game, but I’m fine not experiencing the remastered version if I had to pay an extra $10, and would rather save that for a new game. 

If it’s going to be your first time playing through the game though, it’s available for $50. And the game holds up, with its enhanced visuals, and a memorable – and quite divisive – storyline. –

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Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.