Following the dramatic unveiling of The Last Of Us 2's release date a couple of days ago, Naughty Dog has finally lifted the lid on the anticipated sequel’s story, possibly even fanning theories on the fate of a major character. Joel’s potential death in the Last Of Us 2 has been theorized for years now, his almost ghostly, hallucination-like appearance in the first trailer making fans worry he wouldn’t survive the next adventure. Although speculation still runs rampant, a new story synopsis from the developers themselves might shed some more light on this specific plot point.
The synopsis reads: “Five years after their dangerous journey across the post-pandemic United States, Ellie and Joel have settled down in Jackson, Wyoming. Living amongst a thriving community of survivors has allowed them peace and stability, despite the constant threat of the infected and other, more desperate survivors. When a violent event disrupts that peace, Ellie embarks on a relentless journey to carry out justice and find closure. As she hunts those responsible one by one, she is confronted with the devastating physical and emotional repercussions of her actions."
This new synopsis might not fully reveal the cryptic origin of Ellie’s newfound bloodlust, but it does confirm that her revenge comes after a “violent event”. Of course, this combined with the new footage we saw in Tuesday’s release date trailer definitely alludes to Ellie losing somebody she deeply cares about, whether that be her new-found love interest, Dina, or her surrogate father-figure, Joel. While this will only further stoke the internet speculation over Naughty Dog potentially laying its former protagonist to rest during the beginning of the next game, it does appear as though one of the two will serve as Ellie’s motivation to pursue her revenge-fueled adventure.
Despite the unveiling of the release date trailer footage and this extensive new synopsis, not much is known about the Last Of Us Part II’s story, meaning that we likely won’t get an all-out confirmation of Joel’s fate until the day the game releases. It stands to reason, however, that Joel will have a big role to play in this much-anticipated follow-up, whether he appears in the flesh or as a hallucinatory presence. The character’s surprise appearance in the new trailer alongside the first game’s dramatic cliffhanger ending both allude to him having unfinished business in Ellie’s story, and many fans are eager to see how his return plays out.
The release of the synopsis comes alongside a string of new reveals to coincide with ‘Outbreak Day’, an event held on the 26th of September every year to commemorate the fictional outbreak in the Last Of Us universe. Naughty Dog will be using today to launch some brand new gameplay details through selected influencers and press who were allowed to play the game, as well as some other new details. The studio has used the annual event previously to give away PS4 themes, unveil new posters and deliver some small updates, but this year’s reveals seems to be slightly more significant.
The Last of Us Part 2 will release for PlayStation 4 on February 21st, 2020