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The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2

Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2

Note: SPOILERS AHEAD!

If you haven’t played or watched the game being played and are intrigued, stop reading now! You’ve been warned.

Two hours in and Joel, Papa Joel is dead; killed in a bloody and savage manner that leaves you in tears and sickened, screaming for revenge right then and there. I suspected it was going to be Dina that would die as the creative team behind the game led us, or intimated to us during the whole lead up the release of the game. Bit of marketing bait and switch but absolutely necessary given how people have reacted. I would fear for sales numbers also if the cat got out of the bag early and spread too far. It did btw but most of us seemed to ignore the spoilers thank goodness.

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That scene as gruesome as it is, is so well shot and choreographed it should be considered right up there with the likes of Norman Bates shower scene in the movie Psycho from 1960. The music and sound design is absolutely top notch. You get so engrossed by the whole experience that you forget the world around you and you’re there, right there in the room as the final blow takes Joel’s life.

Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2
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Before all of that, the set up and story building is incredible. It’s completely genuine and believable. It’s fun and light hearted and we get flooded with all the warm fuzzy feelings of visiting our old friends Joel and Ellie. We get to meet some of their new friends and see just how good life has become in Jackson, the quaint but not so little settlement they live in now. Most everything is normal aside from what is seemingly a stained relationship between Ellie and Joel that he smooths over and sets up for better times ahead.

The game visually is next level. Even though they should have made it a PS5 launch title, on the PS4Pro, it’s stunning, adding to the whole experience. I really want to see it on the PS5.

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It’s not just the visuals that are so stunning either, the game mechanics and actions/abilities are a strong point to the game. I’m not a fan of third person perspective but the TLOU2 seems to nail the execution, no pun intended.

Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2
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You’re in Seattle for most of the game and while you’re there, there are many things to do and achieve and people to kill. Who you meet, when and how you meet them, how you hunt, kill or not kill others isn’t just your standard run and gun, shoot and loot kind of play. It’s smart, realistic, for the most part and violently real. This is not a game for kids or those of you with weak stomachs.

Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2
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The various groups you meet are fascinating and meticulously thought out. Now again ‘I’m’ only about half way through; we’ve interacted with the WLF, the Seraphites and various defectors from both sides. Originally I thought perhaps Abby, the protagonist in the game, was the daughter of Robert, the arms smuggler from Boston who was the first person killed by Joel in TLOU. It was actually Tess who shot him but that leads us too Marlene, the head of the Fire Flies and the eventual crux of the entire story of Abby and Joel’s death.

When we first meet Abby, it’s clear she has a personal vendetta and that is why I though perhaps she was Robert’s daughter but when the rest of the group expressed their hatred for Joel in such a vile and expressive way, I knew it was going to be more than the death of a low level street smuggler in nowhere Boston to set this group tracking across the country to get Joel.

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Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2

The various groups you meet are fascinating and meticulously thought out. Now again ‘I’m’ only about half way through; we’ve interacted with the WLF, the Seraphites and various defectors from both sides. Originally I thought perhaps Abby, the protagonist in the game, was the daughter of Robert, the arms smuggler from Boston who was the first person killed by Joel in TLOU. It was actually Tess who shot him but that leads us too Marlene, the head of the Fire Flies and the eventual crux of the entire story of Abby and Joel’s death.

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When we first meet Abby, it’s clear she has a personal vendetta and that is why I though perhaps she was Robert’s daughter but when the rest of the group expressed their hatred for Joel in such a vile and expressive way, I knew it was going to be more than the death of a low level street smuggler in nowhere Boston to set this group tracking across the country to get Joel.

Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2
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Isaac is the leader of the WLF and seemingly the reason for the emergence of the Seraphites and possibly the very one who gave The Prophet, her scars. We first meet Isaac while torturing a Seraphite prisoner with his knife; dark and gruesome once again but very reflective of the world that is TLOU.

I suspect we’ll see the total collapse of and semblance of law and order in the chaos that is sure to engulf the entire city after the WLF attack the Seraphite Island home. A toxic religious ideology intertwined with the personal ambitions and faults of close minded humans clashing with head strong and arrogant militaristic dogma and greed makes for the most deadly of combinations.

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So that’s the story in a nutshell, at least to the point I’ve/they’ve gotten too. It doesn’t explain though, why I’m so enthralled with it and juggling eight You Tubers and their play throughs. I eagerly await their uploads and new parts daily and I lie in bed thinking about the game and how it reflects our lives here in the real world and the lessons and feeling taken from it.

This story leaves me with a sick feeling in my stomach and a sense of despair and emptiness that I simply cannot explain or shake. I have many other You Tube interests like motorcycles and cars and cooking and for the most part, I haven’t been keeping up with those videos anywhere near like I used to.

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Illustration for article titled The New American Novel For a New American Century P.2

I’m very reflective of the world around me and us at this time and I worry for my health and safety and yours. I don’t know you but you are my brothers and sisters. While it might be sappy, I can only live that way and hope you see me the same way and would look out for me as I look out for you, even from a million miles away.

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I don’t think it’s healthy but its art and has had a profound effect on me. I think, so far, it’s a master piece and just like the original TLOU a great work of exceptional American art/literature. Just like Red Dead Redemption 2 before it though, I think the second part is better than the first; a Godfather 2 achievement, making the sequel better than the original.

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