- Aug 25, 2020
Naughty Dog vice president Neil Druckmann hasn't yet decided if his next game will be The Last of Us Part III, or a brand new IP. In a huge interview article with GQ, Druckmann explains that, so close to the release of The Last of Us Part II, his thoughts have inevitably begun turning to the next project: "As you start wrapping things up, creatively there are fewer and fewer responsibilities and my mind can't help but think about the next thing. So yeah, the next thing could be a Part III, the next thing could be some new IP.” Druckmann gives no indication as to which he prefers, with GQ paraphrasing his mindset as, "Ultimately, the best idea wins." [poilib element="poll" parameters="id=a244cf65-0631-4d63-9b4c-718c58c8b112"] If Naughty Dog did return for a third instalment in its celebrated franchise, it seems likely that it'd revisit the same ruined American settings as the first two games, rather than diverge too much. Discussing the planning stages for the second game, Druckmann explains that many people saw the ending of the first game as "sacred", and would have preferred for it not to be continued: “People are always like ‘do another one but focus on all new characters.' Or like, 'do it in, like, Europe. Or do it in Japan. Do something really different.'” Druckmann describes that approach as the “coward’s way out.” As if to reinforce the idea that any Last of Us sequel will focus on the same kinds of locations and characters, Druckmann adds that, if you were to wildly change setting or protagonists, “To me, at that point, you might as well just do a new IP.” [ignvideo url="https://www.ign.com/videos/the-last-of-us-part-2-the-final-preview-no-story-spoilers"] Likely before that decision is finalised, Druckmann will begin working on the HBO TV adaptation of The Last of Us. The show, which recently found a director in Chernobyl's Johan Renck, will begin production after The Last of Us Part 2 is released. Druckmann, who is co-writing with Craig Mazin, also explained to GQ what the benefit of a TV version could be, saying, “It really lets us focus on the characters and the drama and shows you other aspects of those characters.” Mazin explains why he feels The Last of Us was important within gaming, as well as why it's a good fit for a non-interactive adaptation: “It’s ironic that in a medium where technology has progressed so rapidly and incessantly, the narratives so often feel 8-bit. That’s not because of lack of plot. Video games have been drowning in plot for years. The problem was always the lack of compelling characters. Neil brought emotional sophistication, but maybe more importantly, he brought confidence — confidence that story and characters were worth stopping for.” [widget path="global/article/imagegallery" parameters="albumSlug=the-last-of-us-part-2-new-screenshots&captions=true"] Before we get to any of this, however, we have the small matter of The Last of Us Part 2 to play through. The game finally arrives on June 19, and we've got a combat-focused final preview to whet your appetite. We also recently spoke to Neil Druckmann, who discussed creating (and recreating) the Infected, and the new human factions in the game. We recently got confirmation that the PS4 version of The Last of Us Part 2 will be compatible with PS5 upon the new console's release. [poilib element="accentDivider"] Joe Skrebels is IGN's Executive Editor of News. Follow him on Twitter. Have a tip for us? Want to discuss a possible story? Please send an email to [email protected].