Considering how much of a critical and commercial success The Last of Us 2 was (it won more than 300 Game of the Year awards in 2020), a sequel feels very much like an inevitability. Naughty Dog are currently working on other projects but director and co-writer Neil Druckmann has revealed that he has written out an outline for the story of The Last of Us 3. The game itself, however, has yet to enter production.
Appearing on the Script Apart podcast, as transcribed by IGN, Druckmann naturally touched upon a third Last of Us game. Unsurprisingly, he didn't share any details about the story itself, so it's unknown whether a third game would continue Ellie's story or focus on a new protagonist entirely. He clarified that Naughty Dog hasn't started actually making it yet, only saying that he hopes it will one day come to fruition and explore what happens after the events of The Last of Us 2.
He adds that, while there have been discussions about a third game at Naughty Dog, actually making it would no doubt take years. Fans had to wait seven years for a sequel to the first game so a third game could take just as long, perhaps even longer thanks to Naughty Dog's other projects and possibly even the coronavirus pandemic.
One thing Druckmann did share is that, with Last of Us now an established franchise, the third game would have to follow similar patterns to the previous entries, meaning it would stick to the same structural and thematic themes present in those games. Whether that would mean it would be as controversial or as dark as Last of Us 2 is another question entirely.
For the time being, fans of the series do have other content to look forward to. Naughty Dog is supposed to still be working on The Last of Us 2's multiplayer mode, which was initially supposed to be included but was removed so the studio could better focus on the single-player. There have been very few updates about it, though, and it's suspected that it may not release until 2022.
There is also the reported PlayStation 5 remake of the original game, which Naughty Dog has yet to officially announce. That said, this piece of news was met with a lot of criticism and negativity since many feel that it arguably doesn't need to be remade. The news broke in the wake of other unpopular decisions being made at Sony, such as the Days Gone sequel being canceled and the restructuring of its Japan Studio, which likely only amplified peoples' frustrations.
The Last of Us stands as one of the most successful and popular first party IPs on the PlayStation platform, with two award winning installments already released so far. It was known that Naughty Dog is already working on a multiplayer focused The Last of Us game, but a recent leak had surprising information about plans for the future. Supposedly, Sony intends to remake the original The Last of Us game for the PS5, revamping it to take advantage of the capabilities inside Sony's latest home console.
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