The Last of Us is considered one of the “must play” games of 2013. It’s received praise upon praise for its story, mechanics, and style. Despite all the great reviews and such, we decided to rent it first. (Hey, there’s a lot of great games to spend a hard-earned $60 on these days!) When it finally arrived last weekend, my husband called dibs on playing it first. I was looking forward to watching it more than playing, so I settled in for some visual fun.
The game took a very long time to load and stalled once during the process; but we didn’t think much of it — we’ve had similar issues with PS3 games before, particularly games we’ve rented. When things finally got underway, the viewing experience was beautiful. The Last of Us is truly deserving as far as art and art direction go. Everything in the game is gloriously rendered in a style that’s a cross between naturalism and photography. And oh man…that story. After avoiding as many spoilers as possible about the game, I couldn’t wait to see how the story of the main protagonist Joe unfolded.
About 15 minutes into the game, it glitched pretty awkwardly (not like there’s ever a “smooth” glitch). We both watched as Joe froze mid-stance during a stealth moment and magically floated over the terrain. He eventually unfroze, and my husband grumbled as Joe went back to what he was supposed to be doing once he was positioned next to his companion.
The next glitch happened just a few minutes later during a fight scene. One of several enemies walked right through a wall to attack. The scene was pretty dark and it took a moment for the glitch to register, but it became pretty apparent when the bad guy just suddenly appeared next to Joe. We both flinched at the surprise. “Really??” My husband exclaimed.
The third glitch was a true “charm” and one that prevented any further progression. Without giving too much away, shortly into the game, Joe and his companion face a series of enemies on a dock that’s filled with cargo containers. He went through all the necessary motions, and with everyone dead, moved to meet his companion. Only when we found her, she was standing on the edge of the dock under a floating light. And I don’t mean floating as in supernatural — it was obviously a light fixture that was meant to be affixed to a wall. Yet there it hung on absolutely nothing. Joe’s companion was also affected as she simply stood on the edge of the dock glancing around. No amount of button-pressing got her or the scene to progress in any way.
“Is there supposed to be something here? A room or something?” I asked. “I don’t know but something’s not right!” Came the exasperated reply. As he searched for as way to possibly get things moving again, I went to the Internet for as walkthrough. What I discovered was that a key element of the game just simply missing from our play through, and that there was probably nothing to do except restart at the last checkpoint. When I relayed that news, a glaring look came my way, and the game was turned off.
A couple days later, he decided to give the game one more try. This time, it stalled for good on the initial load screen. “That’s it!” he exclaimed, “send it back!” After reporting the game to Gamefly, I dropped it back in the mail. We didn’t ask for another copy of the game. I know that the fault here was with the disc rather than the game itself, but the experience still left a very sour taste behind. I doubt we’ll be seeing The Last of Us in the house any time soon.
Has a game ever glitched out on you so badly that it totally ruined the experience?