The Last of Us—On the Subject of Dogs and Monkeys

I am so behind on video games, but if you have kids and a job, then we’re probably running at the same pace and this post will be mind-blowing and cutting edge.

Not really.

In case you haven’t played it, all the reviews were dead on. Beyond the typical post-apocalyptic offering, The Last of Us deals with some difficult subjects in a beautifully complex and sophisticated way. It beats most movies and television shows that fall into the genre. The Last of Us feels a little light on playing time and action, but these shortcomings were more than balanced out in other ways. There are two things that sort of bug me about the game.

The first is that dogs showed up once, a third of the way into the game, and then…poof…no more dogs. I’m thinking dogs would be everywhere during the apocalypse – but I can accept a game without dogs. My problem is, if you’re going to work dogs into the mix, there sort of has to be a consistency to it. It’s hard to believe that every dog that made it through the apocalypse lives on one block in a small suburb.

The more I thought about it, the more curious I became. So I used my Google-fu and stumbled across this, referring to an alternate version of the game…

Ellie and Joel were originally going to find a puppy during the game and adopt it. (game informer)

That ended up not happening.

I’m starting to think there was one guy who really didn’t like dogs on the project and slowly whittled away at their presence in the game. Scrubbing dogs off the game one by one, in a way no one would notice. Devious and methodical.

When you consider the name of the company that developed the game (Naughty Dog), the whole thing starts feeling like something out of X-files.

Now to the monkeys. If a game is going to have infected monkeys, I think two things must happen out of fairness to the player:

1. Player gets a good look at the infected monkeys.
2. Player gets to fight the infected monkeys.

It would have been a nice element that could have broken up what felt like a predictable alternating rotation of fighting zombies and assholes looking to steal your shit.

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