Grounded: I'll make a survivor of you yet!

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Posted by N7 (4159 posts) -

I got a TV this year that's actually capable of playing 1080p, so you know what that means... That's right, I went back to a game that only goes to 720p.

The Last of Us. You know, the game that everyone really liked or something. No, not The Evil Within. That's the other game everyone really liked.

This one
This one

I still only have a PS3, so I am not playing the Remastered Edition. But I am playing Grounded mode, a difficulty that was added via $5 DLC(Free for season pass holders) that completely changes how you will experience The Last of Us. And I am getting my shit kicked.

Grounded mode is, by and large, the most accurate and realistic depiction of living in a monster ridden post-apocalyptic world I've ever seen. And the best part is, I get to experience this difficulty over a 15 hour long video game.

Full disclosure: I've beaten TLOU a lot. So much so that when the Grounded DLC was released, I wasn't interested. I had just played through Left Behind and felt like I had already gotten my TLOU "fix". So I started the game just to check it out, then I quickly remembered that it's a solid hour and a half before the game even truly enters the prologue. And so around the time you get downtown, right before you enter the collapsed skyscraper, I quit playing. It was a gimmick, I thought. I've already played the game on hard mode so I already experienced the hardships. Fucking hell was I ever wrong.

A quick aside: As the difficulty levels increase in TLOU, you get less resources in the world. I thought it was tough on hard, in which supplies are less common than normal mode, which can have dire consequences as the game goes on. Another quick aside: I have never played "survivor" difficulty, which is the one following hard. So I had no idea what to expect. Here I am jumping straight into a difficulty I don't understand feeling like hot shit before getting swatted down like an annoying fly. And then stomped on. And then lit on fire. And then fucking galvanized.

As you may have already gathered, Grounded mode is fucked. Resources are extremely rare, enemies are so overpowered that every firefight becomes so unbelievably tense that it creates a whole new atmosphere on a whole new level. The previous difficulties had their challenges, but they weren't as fucking nuts as Grounded mode. I was never once "scared" of combat on hard mode, but Grounded presents combat as a trial of time and patience that can end as quickly as it begins with one shot to the head or a solid right hook to the jaw.

I said before, this is incredibly realistic. What does that mean, you ask? Well let me break it down for you. Everything can kill you, no matter how much health you have. I have been at full health only to be killed instantly by a shot to the head, and enemies often sprint at you with a haymaker to the face, knocking you, as they say, the fuck out. And that's just the firefights. Enemies are so much more intelligent in this mode, as they actively take cover until you forget about them and then begin flanking maneuvers.

*CAN NO LONGER ADD IMAGES OH BOY*

Just today. I was in the hotel sequence of the game. I was sneaking my way through the entire level, stealth killing every enemy I could. I was very excited because I had never done this so successfully before(When Grounded makes you as afraid of combat as it did me, you start to make good friends with the stealth mechanics). I was pressed up against a wall, looking at an enemy. Ellie says "Joel! Behind you!". I laughed. Ha ha ha. No, silly child. He's in front of me. I mock the A.I. for its lack of true understanding. That's when I turn to look and see there's a fucking person standing behind me holy shit what the fuck.

Grounded mode strips you of your "listen" ability, and as such, spotting enemies can be very difficult as the levels are usually dark and enemies find ways to blend in. When Ellie calls the enemies out, they become highlighted as if they were being displayed in Listen Mode. This becomes invaluable as, once more, battles can be over in mere seconds as any stray bullet could hit you in the head or a fast enemy could knock you out within the blink of an eye.

People call The Last of Us a survival horror game, but that's never sat right with me. I prefer to think of it as a modern interpretation of survival horror. But with Grounded, with the subtle changes in the gameplay, I start to wonder if I'm just a psycho hipster that relies too much on labels to feel superior, or I even know what I'm talking about. I say this, because Grounded makes one more difficult change to the game to enforce even more of a survivalist feel than the original difficulties: Less checkpoints. Segments that would originally be separated by two, three, or even four checkpoints are now just one checkpoint.

As I mentioned above, the hotel section of the game in Pittsburgh was just one checkpoint. You need to fight through all of the human enemies on all three floors of the hotel until you fall down the elevator shaft before you get a checkpoint. That's like 15 enemies you need to meticulously sneak your way through lest you be insane enough to take them on in open combat.

Also this
Also this

I had to take advantage of every, single, opening that I could get. If a character had their back to me, I had to strike. Because I knew that if I didn't, it would be just another enemy left to potentially come after me if I were to fail. And failure, oh boy... there's nothing quite like spending 15 minutes sneaking your way across an entire level only to die because, oh, right, this part is suddenly fucking wave combat and having to do it all over again.

In The Last of Us, one of the better parts of the gameplay is that you are so powerful, but also so vulnerable. You were capable of dropping enemies with a single bullet, but also prone to great danger if you weren't careful. The human A.I. was ruthless and cunning and the infected A.I. were swarming and overwhelming. It's like that scene at the end of Titanic, where Michael Coreleone says "Not like this" only to be put down by Casey Jones. Grounded takes this a level further by making you even more vulnerable.

I have yet to beat the game on Grounded, but so far I sit in awe of my adventure already, not even out of Pittsburgh. So far every encounter with the enemy has been fought tooth and nail, like some kind of street fight between rabid dogs. I'm juggling between four weapons with one bullet in each while staring down 6 or 7 enemies. God forbid one takes cover behind some wall because they are likely transitioning into a flanking position somewhere behind me. They actually use player tactics like breaking line of sight only to move around and on one hand it's incredible, and on the other it's terrifying.

I never thought The Last of Us was a scary game, but Grounded mode adds a level of "scary" to it that feels almost alien. I've already beaten this game a bunch, so I shouldn't really have that much to experience from this game, right? But nope. That's what it wants you to think, man.

The first playthrough of TLOU I felt like an old grizzled badass. I'm Joel, fuckers. And I'm gonna protect Ellie no matter the cost! But when playing through Grounded, I don't feel like an old grizzled badass. I feel haggard, paranoid. I walk into rooms with dozens of enemies only to look at my inventory and see nothing. Completely nothing. No ammo amongst my four guns, no molotovs, no bombs or smoke bombs. All I have is my fists, a brick, and Ellie. And even then, using melee combat is almost an instant failure as enemies hit you back, which can trigger instant death. Really, the best way to go about fighting is not fighting. It's keeping your distance, staying low, and moving on when you can.

Playing Grounded reminds me of a quote Joel has earlier in the game. He says "It's called luck, and it's goina run out". Indeed, I find myself in all sorts of precarious situations against all sorts of elements.

It's truly something special, I think, that something so optional can make the game feel so real, so... natural. Really, it's almost like this is the way the game was meant to be played. And honestly, I find it a shame that it's locked behind a $5 pay-wall in that it's DLC, but I'm sure $5 isn't anything special to most people. So I wish people will give Grounded a try. I wish people will go for that experience of feeling what The Last of Us is like when you're brought down on such a vulnerable platform that any move you make could lead to your doom.

Really, I find the overbearing difficulty unique. For example, you will enter an area and kill an enemy. That enemy will drop ammo for a weapon you really need ammo for(In my case, I'm out of ammo for everything so anything would be great), end up getting yourself killed and when you kill that very same enemy, he drops nothing this time. That gun that you needed ammo for? Yeah, you still need ammo for it. There's also something particularly frustrating about stealth killing an enemy with a firearm and watching that firearm instantly disappear into the ether the second you grab them. Yo! I needed that shit! Where did it go!? The truth of the matter is ammo is a double edged sword. If you have ammo, you can freely engage enemies and kill them, or try to. Doing so will expend all ammo and you're out again. But not having ammo allows you to get creative and sneak kill enemies as best as you possibly can. Sure, there's nothing stopping you from "getting creative" while you do have ammo, but the fact of the matter is I don't even remember what that was like anymore.

For example, Bill's Town sucked. Everything about it sucked. There's infected fucking everywhere and I've got little to no ammo. The best thing is the introduction of the Bow and being able to retrieve arrows from the corpses of enemies, provided that the arrow doesn't break on impact... which they all did, leaving me shit out of luck. But hey! I've got this sick bow, right!? Right... Anyway. The infected are fast and move erratically so accuracy comes and goes along with the natural weapon-sway. The entire thing was a shitshow from start to finish that can only be described as like when The Undertake threw Mankind off the top of the Hell A Cell and Mankind was being carried away on a stretcher only to get up, come back, climb to the top of the Cell again before being slammed through it. It goes from bad, to worse, to really worse instantly.

This motherfucker.
This motherfucker.

When I first fought the Bloater on Normal difficulty, I had a fucking arsenal. I had several Molotov cocktails, a bomb or two and ammo out the whazoo. It was a tense fight, but an easily victorious fight. Grounded mode? I had four shots in my shotgun and two bullets in my revolver. That's it. That's not even talking about the random infected that get added to the fight every now and again. I died so many times I honestly didn't think it was possible. Perhaps I had fucked up and somehow went in with too little ammo? Maybe I wasn't supposed to use that bomb from before and could have used it now? All questions, no answers. But when the time was right I got hulked out and picked up that big fucker with those 24 inch pythons, brother and slammed him so hard in the Pontiac Silverdome the entire earth was temporarily knocked out of orbit, jack. Okay, not really, but it was pretty close.

...And that's when Donald Trump invited me to play bass for Metallica, jack!
...And that's when Donald Trump invited me to play bass for Metallica, jack!

Then I got to Pittsburgh and had to fight an entire hotel of insane fuckheads who smashed me face in a couple hundred times(Or so it felt like), then I had to deal with a hoard of infected in the lower reaches of the building only to make my way outside and deal with three or four waves of hunters. After I beat those guys I saved the game and that's where I'm at now.

Honestly, I'm way into Grounded and think it's an incredible and unique experience. The difficulty makes Dark Souls look like candy land at times because in Dark Souls you're at least allowed to fight back. In Grounded mode, you'd be lucky if you can get a single swing of a melee weapon in before some hunter has you on the ground, flat. The only problem I'm running into is that the game has a very strict script. The game wants you to play the way it intended for you to, and it does not like you to deviate.

For example, in Bill's Town, when you are pushing the truck along. There are three infected along the left side of the road in the front yards of the houses. I decided, hey, I've got less than no ammo so I'll go and kill those guys before the truck gets there so it can lessen the load! Genius, right? Well, not really. What happens is you can get to about two of the infected before it does two things: One, forces Bill into action mode and causes him to sprint at the last infected while blazing-guns and triggering anything else in the neighborhood. Two, it instantly spawns an infected on Ellie so you will have to run back and save her. But, the timer is so short there's a good chance you won't make it. When you fail to save Ellie from the infected, it's game over and you have to do it all over again. And this time you'd probably not want to go and take out those infected anymore.

Honestly, that really annoyed me. My logic: I'm playing on Super-fuck-my-face mode and I'm using logic to solve a puzzle and attempt to make this incredible hard feat somewhat easier. It sounds reasonable, I mean logical reasoning is pretty much the way you get through video games. Logic: Bullets kill enemies, so I'm gonna shoot enemies with bullets! Ding, you're correct. Logic: Killing enemies will reduce the amount of enemies around! BONK YOU'RE WRONG FUCK YOU GO BACK TO SCHOOL IDIOT. JESUS.

I have yet to beat the game on Grounded yet(Echo, echo, echo...) so I'm not sure if any fine details will change, but one thing I wish would have at least been considered was increasing Ellie's dependability. They changed the A.I. to be a lot more cunning and tactical, so I wish they would have made the frequency of Ellie's MLG moments like saving you during a scuffle or hitting enemies with bricks to stun them. The only thing that happens is bricks being thrown, but so far I've yet to be saved during an instakill animation. It's disappointing because playing Grounded makes you more dependent on Ellie's abilities and so it would have been interesting to see what happens when an enemy has you down and mere seconds from game-over, only for Captain Switchblade to jump into the fray and start stabbing people. It doesn't happen. Though, to be fair, and maybe a little hypocritical, I have noticed that Ellie kills people on her own a lot more. She'll run up to some guy, jump on his back and stab him to death almost without prompt. Usually it's someone I'm trying to fight and she comically gets in the way as if she's saying "No, Joel! I've got this!" and take the fucker down.

Watch out boys, kitty's got teeth! Wow that's the worst caption I've ever made.
Watch out boys, kitty's got teeth! Wow that's the worst caption I've ever made.

It's absolutely appreciated, and I'm definitely trying not to whine or complain about it "Because it's just too hard! *insert sad face here*". It's just that they made the enemy A.I. a lot more advanced and yet Ellie just seems to be Ellie. I don't know, maybe I just suck. Whatever. You're not my real dad anyway.

Anyways, let's wrap this up the only way I know how: Bulletpoints!

Likes:

  • Insanely difficult
  • Extreme lack of resources forces you to get creative
  • Super vulnerability also forces you to get creative
  • Suddenly like being forced to get creative

Dislikes:

  • I feel sometimes like I'm not being given enough time to do what needs to be done. Those infected move fast and some have a pretty wide range for their instakill grab and I seem to always be a few feet away but get grabbed anyway.
  • The lack of checkpoints is also a double edged sword as I like the additional challenge of knowing I have to get this shit right, but when I fail quite a distance into an area(Sometimes 16 minutes into an area) I get sent back to the very beginning and I just feel so defeated. I think it's a necessary evil to enforce such a strict challenge, but sometimes it feels more like a noose wrapped around your neck at all times.

My Grounded journey isn't over yet, in fact it's about the half-way point, if I remember correctly. But I like what I see so far. Enemies popping out of the woodwork and then retreating for cover, only to disappear and flank around you makes for some interesting scenarios. Truthfully, I would have preferred a customizable difficulty system, something like Sniper Elite 2 and 3 that allow you to choose from a preset list of difficulties while also allowing you to cherrypick what you want to be easier or even harder. I like the creativity of enemies going to cover so their friends to distract you, giving them an opening to move around and flank you. I can understand why there had to be an entirely different "mode" for that difficulty, but it's more fun to go up against these guys. In a perfect world, I'd be able to choose the super-hard A.I. while also reducing the instakill melee range on these guys so I can get some room to breathe and have intense shootouts while still having to worry about my flank. Because I can't understate enough how fun shootouts are on Grounded mode. It's fucking brutal.

But I guess that won't happen, and I'm certainly not going to knock Naughty Dog for not having some crazy feature that very few games actually have. It's just that I'd love to be able to appreciate the crazy difficulty under a maybe-not-so-punishing light. But that's not going to stop me from continuing on my journey. And until next time, I'm gonna fucking die a lot yeehaw!

No Caption Provided

I have my own blog here. No one ever comments on it though. Truthfully I'd rather just post blogs to Giant Bomb, but I also like having my own blog to have my own identity, you know? You go there and it's my shit. My opinions. My views. It's great. While I'm on Giant Bomb, I'm a member of Giant Bomb, but on my own blog, I'm just me. You know? Eventually someone's going to yell at me for constantly putting a link at the end of these, but really I'm not doing it for ad money or anything underhanded. I spent some money on the design and on a domain for 5 years so I'm proud and want to show it off. I don't sell anything, I don't have ads. It's just me and my words, my words that kill.

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#1 Posted by Sweep (10563 posts) -

I played through Survivor and actually finished it faster than my normal run, even without the listen ability, because I found myself stealthing my way through most of the game without ever engaging the enemy. I enjoyed it, but when grounded came out it seemed to be exactly the same, just with even less. I didn't bother mostly because it sounded too similar to the survivor playthrough. If they really have messed around with the AI like you say though, it might be time to jump back in.

Good blog dude :)

Moderator
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#2 Edited by N7 (4159 posts) -

@sweep said:

I played through Survivor and actually finished it faster than my normal run, even without the listen ability, because I found myself stealthing my way through most of the game without ever engaging the enemy. I enjoyed it, but when grounded came out it seemed to be exactly the same, just with even less. I didn't bother mostly because it sounded too similar to the survivor playthrough. If they really have messed around with the AI like you say though, it might be time to jump back in.

Good blog dude :)

Indeed. The big thing that Naughty Dog was talking about with Grounded was they footage they had shown of the game and then what the game itself was like ended up being different. Different in that you'd see things like the E3 demo where the A.I. almost seemed like another player because of how responsive and dynamic they are. But in the actual game, it's just "Take cover, shoot a couple of times, maybe move, get killed". In Grounded, both the human and infected A.I. are changed to be a little more unpredictable.

EDIT: In the words of Naughty Dog, and I'm paraphrasing here: If you're not paying attention, you'll be walking around and a hunter will walk up from behind and cut your throat. They were really trying to get across how brutal and adaptive this new A.I. is in Grounded.

In the lower recesses of the hotel level, with all of the infected, I had cleared out all but one. She was running and hiding from me and I couldn't quite lure her out so I could kill her. Eventually she sprints at me, stops, does some sort of Madden NFL looking shit to get behind cover before popping out and catching me off guard, killing me instantly.

I had a lot of trouble in particular with the human A.I. because they started doing shit like forming up on each other and moving together. I got caught killing a guy and sprinted upstairs and hid behind a couch, and before I knew it 4(FOUR!!!) dudes ran up the stairs throwing Molotov's, shooting shotguns and one guy had a fucking lead pipe. I had never seen such coordination before. It was both terrifying and exciting.

Also, thanks man. :)

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#3 Posted by nasp (652 posts) -

i watched people play grounded for hours on twitch a month or so ago and really enjoyed it,so this blog was very interesting to me.i actually agree about last of us being WAY harder then the souls series when its on grounded.in fact it might be one of the hardest games ever at that point,because its so freaking brutal what you have to go through to beat it.so yeah i really enjoyed this and cant wait to see if you beat it or not.

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#4 Edited by Justin258 (15581 posts) -

Do the enemies still take a lot of bullets before going down? I'm fine with having less health if this realistic mode also makes bullets more than an annoyance when they hit enemies in the heart or lungs.

Just reading your description of this makes it sound like a nightmarish experience, and I don't mean that in a good way.

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#5 Posted by citizencoffeecake (1534 posts) -

Damn that's a long read, but I'm glad you wrote it as I had no idea what this new mythical difficulty was. My wife got me Remastered for Christmas and I popped it in and saw something called Grounded so I picked it and started the intro but haven't had time to actually get to any real gameplay. Sounds like I'm in for some real shit. I played through my first time on hard when I got the PS3 version and it was a great experience that was actually just right difficulty-wise. Now I'm thinking maybe I should play survivor instead just to hone my skills I don't know.

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#6 Posted by N7 (4159 posts) -

@nasp said:

i watched people play grounded for hours on twitch a month or so ago and really enjoyed it,so this blog was very interesting to me.i actually agree about last of us being WAY harder then the souls series when its on grounded.in fact it might be one of the hardest games ever at that point,because its so freaking brutal what you have to go through to beat it.so yeah i really enjoyed this and cant wait to see if you beat it or not.

It seems like whenever I enter a new area I have to just sit there for a few minutes and take it all in. "So this is what I must overcome to move on". That bloater fight took a lot out of me, but I managed it. Then sometimes the game spawns enemies directly behind you and that's kind of cheap if you ask me, but that's just another puzzle. For example when you are in the lower recesses of the hotel and you must start the generator. If you "begin" the area by starting the generator, it will spawn an infected behind you and with it being on Grounded, whenever you get hit you are instantly killed. So what you have to do instead is get the keycard first, which causes that infected to spawn and run away from you instead of towards you.

You can actually see that infected "pop" in by spinning the camera and holding triangle so you pick up the keycard while facing the opposite direction.

I feel like by playing the game on Grounded I've entered some sort of 2001: A Space Odyssey warp tunnel and I'm starting to see the game for the first time or something else that's equally insane.

Also I'm not sure where this is relevant or not but I thought maybe I should post it: Enemies don't react to dead bodies. So you need to stealth kill whoever you can whenever you can as long as you aren't caught doing it. It's super handy because I could have sworn enemies reacted to dead bodies, but if they did, they certainly don't on Grounded.

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#7 Posted by EuanDewar (5160 posts) -

I just started up the Remastered version on Hard after beating the PS3 edish on Normal back when it came out. Grounded sounds rad for those who are up to the challenge, not sure I am though. Actually I'm quite certain I'm not.

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#8 Posted by N7 (4159 posts) -

Do the enemies still take a lot of bullets before going down? I'm fine with having less health if this realistic mode also makes bullets more than an annoyance when they hit enemies in the heart or lungs.

Just reading your description of this makes it sound like a nightmarish experience, and I don't mean that in a good way.

The enemies take the same amount of bullets or punches or hits. I was able to instakill a whole hoard of infected outside of the high school in Bill's Town by climbing on top of the vans and buses. When the infected climb up all you do is hit them once or twice and then Joel Sparta Kick's them off the ledge and they die.

I'm truthfully surprised that enemies are so easy to kill at times. I think an apt description is that you are now just as easy to kill as the enemies are. You go down quick. So you have to watch yourself at all times.

Personally, and I think this is lame since the DLC does cost money, but I think everyone should try it out. I'm not trying to be some used car salesman saying "I love The Last of Us so I automatically love this!", no, I do love TLOU but I have found Grounded to be an entirely different experience from the base game. Collectibles like spare parts and pills are just as common as they always are, but things like ammo and crafting resources are almost non-existent. It's funny how long I went through the game so far without any ammo while still upgrading guns. I'm just like "Yep... I'll get this here higher firerate, which will come in handy when I get some bullets".

Damn that's a long read, but I'm glad you wrote it as I had no idea what this new mythical difficulty was. My wife got me Remastered for Christmas and I popped it in and saw something called Grounded so I picked it and started the intro but haven't had time to actually get to any real gameplay. Sounds like I'm in for some real shit. I played through my first time on hard when I got the PS3 version and it was a great experience that was actually just right difficulty-wise. Now I'm thinking maybe I should play survivor instead just to hone my skills I don't know.

I played through it on hard and loved my decision because it gave me a hefty challenge while also allowing me to appreciate that the story is so melancholic. It matched. But Grounded is on an entirely different level. This is almost like a gimmick. They made something so insanely and honestly unfairly hard just so they can say "There, now the A.I. is just as challenging as you guys wanted it to be". And boy, are there ever right.

I mean, I'm not kidding. I've had to fight tooth and nail for every single battle. And I've had more scares out of Grounded than I ever have gotten from the base game. There's just something so terrifying about sneaking your way through a level for 15 minutes and then getting caught because an enemy so perfectly blended into the background. It's an immediate rush as you realize that now, for real, it's do or die. The shit I have put Joel through in my short amount of time with Grounded mode is insane. I honestly expect to load up TLOU tomorrow and Joel's just gone. Ellie's standing around going "So Joel said he was going out for some cigarettes and he'd be back soon..." and that's how Grounded ends.

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#9 Posted by Ghostiet (5832 posts) -

I'll have to check it out. I played it on Hard and I consider it to be the perfect balance of stuff for TLoU and what I played of Survivor mode kicked my ass, so I'll probably cut myself trying to finish Grounded mode.

GOTY 2013

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#10 Posted by N7 (4159 posts) -

@ghostiet: @euandewar: I think that something like Grounded mode is more like a badge of honor than anything. To say "I beat TLOU on Grounded!" might be considered a feat of some kind. I mean, I can believe it. I haven't even gotten to the hardest parts of the game yet and I'm already being pushed to the limit.

I'm enjoying my time with it though. I think the tone of the story and the brutality of the difficulty match up a lot better than what I played on hard mode. You hear Joel talking about how luck runs out and yadda yadda and then get into the gameplay and get murdered like, instantly. I'm not sure if this is the way the game was meant to be played, but it's certainly a spectacle that everyone should try out or watch someone else try out.

I know personally I went into Grounded mode cold, I had no idea what to expect except for some comments made by Naughty Dog, and of course that this was supposed to be the hardest difficulty yet, but man I didn't have any idea what I was getting myself into. It's even more problematic since the goddamn intro takes an hour and a half to get going. By the time you get to actual gameplay you've already invested some time into the game. So I can't imagine what people would do when they realize they don't like it. That's gotta suck.

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#11 Posted by nasp (652 posts) -

@n7: yeah ive played it a couple times and always assumed that they see bodies,so its crazy to hear that that is not the case.i dont know if thats a good thing or not.if they can see the bodies its more realistic,but its way harder then it already is.if they cant see them then its easier,but its not realistic at all.so honestly i dont know my opinion on this.what do you think is the better choice for the game?

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#12 Posted by Fredchuckdave (10824 posts) -

My main thing with the Last of Us is that the game is too good so I don't want to spoil it by replaying it to death or looking up where all the collectibles are. I'm sure I'll eventually play grounded because why not but it might be 5 years in the future or something. Anything that makes it feel more "gamey" sort of hurts the experience in my eyes.

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#13 Posted by N7 (4159 posts) -

@nasp said:

@n7: yeah ive played it a couple times and always assumed that they see bodies,so its crazy to hear that that is not the case.i dont know if thats a good thing or not.if they can see the bodies its more realistic,but its way harder then it already is.if they cant see them then its easier,but its not realistic at all.so honestly i dont know my opinion on this.what do you think is the better choice for the game?

Well if they saw the bodies all encounters would probably last 40 minutes because a lot of the times when they "activate" they will go completely stationary, which would make it incredibly hard to progress. Especially on a difficulty that could get you dead in a matter of seconds. So I'd rather they keep with the not reacting to bodies. Otherwise I'd lose my mind.

My main thing with the Last of Us is that the game is too good so I don't want to spoil it by replaying it to death or looking up where all the collectibles are. I'm sure I'll eventually play grounded because why not but it might be 5 years in the future or something. Anything that makes it feel more "gamey" sort of hurts the experience in my eyes.

I agree with that. The thing is this difficulty feels more like a gimmick than anything so it's almost like some challenge mode rather than me just playing through TLOU again, you know? It's so different from the base difficulties that I don't have a lot of trouble seeing it as "The Last of Us", but rather "Fuck your face mode, featuring Joel and Ellie".

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#14 Posted by Pie (7363 posts) -

Nice post

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#15 Posted by N7 (4159 posts) -

@nasp said:

@n7: yeah ive played it a couple times and always assumed that they see bodies,so its crazy to hear that that is not the case.i dont know if thats a good thing or not.if they can see the bodies its more realistic,but its way harder then it already is.if they cant see them then its easier,but its not realistic at all.so honestly i dont know my opinion on this.what do you think is the better choice for the game?

Actually I've played through quite a bit now and it seems that they do react to bodies, but only in certain locations. I've seen them walk right over a dead body and do absolutely nothing, yet recently they've been able to see them from half the map away and then alert all of the enemies in the area.

Not only that, but I'm really starting to see the affects of this new difficulty on the A.I. For instance, I was just sneaking around, no one saw me, no one was on alert. I had just entered a new area. All of the sudden I hear sprinting and a really aggressive panting, then a scream and bam, lead pipe to the back of the head and the screen cuts to black. This fucker snuck up on me and killed me without being on any sort of alert or awareness. Not only that, but I had never seen that death transition before. Usually you have a dramatic death animation, but this time it just cut to black. It's great.

Really the only complaint I have after seeing that is I'd really like to see more of it. So far they don't really do anything new unless you engage them in battle. So while they do some rather impressive flanking/diversionary tactics, it's almost moot because with the lack of resources and ammo you don't want to engage them. Sometimes you most likely can't.

@pie said:

Nice post

Thanks Pie :)

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#16 Edited by nasp (652 posts) -

@n7: thats crazy how weird that seeing bodies system is.i wonder how they decide which areas allow the seeing of bodys and which ones dont.seeing a dead guy from half a map away is pretty crazy too.the more i hear about the systems with the ai in this game.the more i think that theres either some bad design decisions or some weird ai bugs in this game.its one thing to either decide to let or not let them see dead bodies,but to have BOTH in the game is really weird and i dont like it.them seeing a dead body from half the map away is a little ridiculous to me as well.neither one of these things seem to ruin the game,but they are still a little weird,intentional or not.

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