The Last of Us has one of the most memorable endings in gaming history. As Joel and Ellie made their way across the countryside once again, we could see the doubt that began to consume Ellie. Why had Joel left the fireflies before she had a chance to awaken? How could it be that there were a great many more people like her? Hadn't they made that extraordinary, and perilous journey for a reason?
Eventually, she can't take it anymore. Before Joel moves into the town below them and starts to focus on their new life, Ellie had to know. "Swear to me! Swear to me that everything you said about the fireflies is true." After she received the boldfaced lie from Joel, all she could mutter was, "Okay."
The Last of Us 2 - The Relationship of Joel & Ellie Can Only Sour!
Following this tense moment, we can't help but ponder the selfish and very human decision that Joel made to keep Ellie alive. The question now is whether The Last of Us 2 will pick up from this moment. Personally, I'm an advocator of seeing neither Joel nor Ellie in The Last of Us 2 - that being said, there are ways that it could work. But if Naughty Dog's next game after Uncharted 4 chronicles the continuation of their relationship, there's only one way that I can see it going. But if Joel and Ellie's relationship soured in The Last of Us 2, would this undermine the narrative of the first game and affect its power?
My main issue with having Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us 2 is that a continuation of their story would disrupt the balance of the first game. Naughty Dog explored exactly what they wanted to with The Last of Us, their conclusion left things open in order for us to fill in the gaps. If they do that for us, I think the power of the original will suffer. But that's just me.
But if their narrative is expanded upon with a sequel, I can only see the situation getting worse. If Ellie uncovered the truth about what Joel did - especially if you chose to shoot all the doctors - I don't think she could forgive his actions. Nor should she. Ellie had made the conscious decision to help mankind in their pursuit for a cure. She travelled across the country for a year to make it happen.
What Do You Want From its Release Date?
I can see Joel's pain overcoming in ways we hadn't expected. If Ellie chooses to distance herself from him, he'll have nothing left. He invested everything he had into Ellie's safety, he devoted himself to keeping her aive. He wasn't going through that pain again, and seeing how her disdain for him would affect their relationship may be worth exploring in The Last of Us 2. Here are some alternatives that could also be interesting for the sequel:
- Same universe, but characters that we've never met before on a very different journey.
- Charting the birth of the fireflies and how Marlene came to lead them.
- Following one of the other characters in The Last of Us, such as Bill or Tommy.
- Exploring the 20 year gap between the death of Joel's daughter and before he met Ellie.
If you have any preferences for how The Last of Us 2 should play out on its release date, let us know in the comments below!