Ellie Playing Guitar in The Last of Us Part II

We’re Still Optimistic for ‘The Last of Us Part 3’

Side question: can I HANDLE a 'Last of Us Part 3'?

I don’t know if my heart can take any more.

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The Last of Us Part 1 was a beautiful, brutal PS3 swan song drenched in love and blood. The Last of Us Part 2 was a gripping revenge thriller that taught me more about forgiveness than nine years of Catholic school education. Also it had a WLW relationship. Gotta love it. The Last of Us Part 3? Oh, I can’t even imagine.

But I think it’s a-comin’. Oh yes, I do.

But do you have PROOF it’s coming?

Of course not! I have the next best thing, according to science: a theory! An elegant hypothesis, as it were.

Look, HBO just picked up The Last of Us, and they’ve been doing damn good job with it. They are THROWING resources at this thing, no doubt because they want to see The Last of Us transcend the “video game phenomenon” and become a “cultural phenomenon.” And you know what? HBO is pretty damn good at doing that. I mean, just look at the stranglehold Game of Thrones had on pop culture for basically a decade, the ripples of which are STILL being felt with House of the Dragon. If there’s one thing I can say for sure about HBO, it’s that they’re pretty good at knowing which horse to bet on. And The Last of Us is the name of that horse.

We know that The Last of Us has already been renewed for a second season. By why stop there? Why not keep milking this cultural cash cow for all she’s worth? If season 2 doesn’t cover the second game in the series, season 3 sure as hell will. Hell, depending on how they play it, they could have four seasons of this thing, breaking each game into two parts. But HBO doesn’t normally stop at four seasons, does she? Oh no no no no. Their shows are more in the “six to eight seasons” ballpark.

And if they wanna do more seasons, they’re gonna need another game.

Neil Druckmann, one of the lead writers for The Last of Us, has confirmed that there is a plot outline for a third installment of the game. “I don’t know how much I want to reveal … [co-writer Halley Gross] and I did write an outline for a story, that we’re not making —but I hope one day can see the light of day—that explores a little bit what happens after this game. We’ll see,” said Druckmann in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter. I understand your hopes might not be high. After all, “we’ll see” was your mother’s code phrase for “not on your life, kid” when you were growing up. BUT, in the lead up the release of the HBO series, Druckmann said outright in the same interview that there is “more story to tell.”

SIX SEASONS AND A MOVIE, BABY!!!!!!

HOWEVER. Like a frustrating romantic partner, ol’ Neil is now giving mixed signals. In a recent interview with IGN, Neily boy has suddenly become rather tight-lipped about the future of the series, when what we’re begging for is an honest, open-mouth kiss of answer (with a tasteful amount of tongue). When the interviewer asked a leading question about the possibility of a potential third installment of the game, this is what Druckmann said:

“No comment. We have the multiplayer game coming out and we’re going to reveal more about that later this year. Beyond that, it’s the same prospect we’ve always had. We don’t do something that we’re not extremely passionate about. So unless we had a really good, compelling story to keep the story going, then it ends at Part 2.”

IDK, Neil, I’m not sure I buy it.

Think about it. Naughty Dog is all about trilogies. Look at old games like Jak and Daxter. Look at newer blockbuster titles like Uncharted. Hell, the latter game got FOUR installments. It really isn’t a stretch to think that The Last of Us 3 is around the corner. And with HBO throwing money at this thing, I think it’s safe to say it’s all but guaranteed. It’s possible that what they could be doing is waiting until the end of season 2, which will bring the viewers of the show to the same place in the story as the people who played the second game.

With both gaming and TV audiences STARVING for more, I bet that’ll they’ll announce a third installment in order to build MASSIVE hype. After all, it doesn’t make sense to announce a third game when the viewers of the show haven’t even been introduced to Abby yet. By keeping quiet on a third game until just the right moment, they could make an even bigger financial and cultural impact by announcing its release when everyone is ready for it.

But what could The Last of Us Part 3 possibly be about?

That I do NOT know …

What are the loose ends from the second game?

Well, obviously Abby is still kicking around, as is her adopted little brother, Lev. Tommy is still thirsty for revenge against Abby; with his shot-out eye, bum leg, and newfound bad attitude, he could be set for an anti-hero/villain arc (though that seems unlikely). It’s also likely that the game will tackle what it truly means to be an adult in this world. The first game is about Ellie as a child; the second is about Ellie is as an angsty, rebellious youth; the third could be about Ellie as a grown woman. Maybe she’ll take over command of Jackson after Maria passes away? Maybe she never returned to Jackson, and she’s looking to discover a new part of the world with a slew of new problems? Or, in my wildest dreams …

Maybe she and Abby will team up in order to find a cure. Maybe they’ll try to rid the world of the infected once and for all. Maybe humanity will return from the brink of collapse.

Maybe. I doubt it. But I can dream, can’t I?

(featured image: Naughty Dog)


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Author
Jack Doyle
Jack Doyle (they/them) is actually nine choirs of biblically accurate angels crammed into one pair of $10 overalls. They have been writing articles for nerds on the internet for less than a year now. They really like anime. Like... REALLY like it. Like you know those annoying little kids that will only eat hotdogs and chicken fingers? They're like that... but with anime. It's starting to get sad.