4 reasons to upgrade to The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered

4 reasons to upgrade to The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered
Images via Naughty Dog

Written by 

Joshua Boyles

Published 

18th Jan 2024 14:59

If you’re wondering why The Last of Us Part 2, a game that came out a mere three and a half years ago, might need a remaster, you’re not the only one. After all, didn’t it already receive a free patch to provide performance benefits on the PS5? Yes, yes it did.

However, the latest remastered edition of one of 2020’s best games does have a few tricks up its sleeve that might justify a purchase if you’re a huge fan of The Last of Us.

With casting announcements for the second season of the HBO show coming thick and fast (we can’t wait to see Kaitlyn Dever as Abby), now might just be the perfect time to make the upgrade - so here are four reasons why you might want to dive into The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered.

No Return

A character with a bow in The Last of Us No Return
Click to enlarge

The headline feature of The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered is a roguelike game mode that’s been taped onto the original experience. If you played the free update for God of War Ragnarok late last year, then it’s a bit like that but with a lot less story.

You choose which character to play as and subsequently stealth, fight, and battle your way through several different arenas and combat encounters. All the while, you’ll be scavenging for resources to upgrade your equipment and abilities to help you on your journey. The catch? If you die, you head right back to the beginning and lose all your upgrades.

As you complete more encounters, you unlock new characters to play as, including several of both Ellie and Abby’s cohort from the main story. With the already violent and punchy combat of The Last of Us 2 forming a great foundation for the game mode, it’s good fun to dig into. However, your enjoyment will entirely depend on how much you gel with the existing combat.

Lost Levels with Directors Commentary

TLOU Part 2 firefly logo
Click to enlarge

If you’re more into the story of The Last of Us Part 2, there are three cut levels that have been re-introduced into the game for this Remaster. Think of it as almost a Director’s Cut, with a couple of extra scenes adding a small amount more context to the events of the original game.

To go alongside these levels, Naughty Dog has also included some developer commentary, which presumably explains the scenes in more detail and provides an explanation as to why they were cut in the first place.

However, these Lost Levels can be completed in around 30 minutes or less, so they’re nowhere near as chunky as you might be expecting. Still, they’re a neat addition to the package that fans of The Last of Us story will surely lap up.

Some performance benefits

Screenshot of Ellie on horseback in TLOU Part 2
Click to enlarge

When we think of remastered games, we typically jump right to how much better they look or perform. Don’t get your hopes up with this one, as there’s very little to discern between how this version of The Last of Us Part 2 looks versus its original PS4 release.

While it’s possible to run the game at a native 4K resolution at 30 fps, it’s barely discernable from the arguably superior 1440p 60 fps mode when seen at a normal TV viewing distance. The biggest graphical jumps, according to Digital Foundry, can be found in the vegetation LOD, which appears to have a little less pop-in compared to the PS4 version.

Perhaps the biggest benefit of the remaster is in the loading times. While the PS4 version running on PS5 could take up to 40 seconds to load between scenes, these gaps have been cut in half in The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered. Bad news if you enjoy a little snack during loading screens, great news if you’re sick of watching fireflies flicker around a dark screen.

The bottom line is that you shouldn’t upgrade to The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered based on the performance benefits alone.

Price

A close up of Ellie from The Last of Us
Click to enlarge

Lastly, let’s talk price. If you already own a copy of The Last of Us Part 2 on PS4, then you can upgrade to the PS5 remaster for a fee of £10. When you equate that with takeaway coffees, it’s not a huge ask for a decent amount of added content.

However, if you don’t already own The Last of Us Part 2, Sony is charging £44.99 for this version, which while heavily discounted from the standard £69.99 that its new games normally launch at, still stings a little.

If you’re desperate to get in on the remastered action for the cheapest price, I recommend you look for a copy of the PS4 version at your local trade-in store and then pay the upgrade fee. I regularly see the PS4 version selling for £25 at my local CEX store, which with the upgrade fee added on top will still save you a tenner. You miss out on the remastered box art, but what's more important? Pretty graphics, or a plastic box?

Ultimately, the price of admission for The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered will come down to personal preference. If you’re big on the combat gameplay of the original game, you’ll get plenty out of the rogue-like mode. The same can be said of the Lost Levels.

However, if you’re just looking for an excuse to play through the main story again on PS5, you can probably forgo the upgrade price and put up with slightly less nice-looking grass. 

For more helpful The Last of Us Part 2 guides, keep reading GGRecon. For our full thoughts on The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered, check out our review. We’ve also listed a bunch of other games to try if you like The Last of Us, as well as why we think Part 2 should come to PC.

Joshua is the Guides Editor at GGRecon. After graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in Broadcast Journalism, he previously wrote for publications such as FragHero and GameByte. You can often find him diving deep into fantasy RPGs such as Skyrim and The Witcher, or tearing it up in Call of Duty and Battlefield. He's also often spotted hiking in the wilderness, usually blasting Arctic Monkeys.

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