With The Last of Us 2 officially scheduled to release early next year, Naughty Dog has been revealing more and more information about the highly-anticipated upcoming sequel. One of these new details came in the form of a new infected enemy that Ellie will face on her journey, and as it turns out, the game’s director has decided to give more details on this new foe.
Speaking to PlayStation Blog about The Last of Us 2, Neil Druckmann was asked about the new Shambler enemy that appeared in recent gameplay footage. “In the first game, there is all this documentation about the different stages [of the infection],” Druckmann describes, before stating, “Now we have to justify why there are different stages. Why are there mutations of these things? Without getting into it here, there is something about the environment and how much time has passed that has allowed these mutations to occur.”
Much like the presence of the Clickers in the first Last of Us, it’s clear these new enemies are ones Druckmann and Naughty Dog wanted to feel authentically placed in the world, with context behind their monstrous appearance and abilities. That’s not all, however, as the sequel's director goes on to detail how their presence will affect combat. “We have Runners that close the distance quickly,” he says, “Clickers that move slowly but are one-hit kills”, he follows on. “Shamblers provide this area of attack, where they have this cloud of gaseous acid that burns materials around it. It burns your skin. The way you saw it in this demo is that they’re mostly on their own. It gets really interesting because you have a cloud that hurts you when you enter it, but it also blocks your view, then Runners burst through it. So the combinations get really interesting.”
As is evident through Druckmann’s description, The Shamblers will provide a whole different element, which will make for some more varied and unique combat encounters over the game's supposedly very lengthy campaign. It will no doubt make for some intense and frantic gunfights when players engage with this terrifying enemy, especially as it seems Clickers and Runners will also be joining the fray.
Of course, this isn’t the only new enemy type announced for The Last Of Us 2, with dogs now becoming a fixture of the game’s combat scenarios. They can track Ellie’s scent and provide a faster and more vicious foe to tangle with if encountered. Both these new additions to the game’s roster of enemies will no doubt make for some intense moments when the game hits shelves next year.
The Last of Us 2 is set to release on February 21, 2020, exclusively on the PlayStation 4.