Following the leak that confirmed its existence, Naughty Dog has officially confirmed The Last of Us Part II Remastered for PlayStation 5. Set to arrive on January 19, 2025, the remaster of the blockbuster post-apocalyptic action-adventure promises technological improvements, new modes and even behind-the-scenes features. But what does this all mean specifically for those who have already played the game?
New “No Return” Mode
Perhaps the biggest new feature coming in The Last of Us Remastered for PS5 is a new roguelike survival mode called “No Return.” In this mode, players choose a character and jump into a randomized level that will test their combat and survival experience.
There will be a selection of characters to choose from — some playable for the first time — and each character has their own traits that offer different types of playstyles. The character you select will play a role in how you decide to approach each run, which is filled with various stealth and combat encounters against a range of enemies with “unique twists that can add new, unexpected factors to any given encounter.”
After each run, you can select rewards, spec your character and more. You’ll also unlock more characters and skins to use in this mode as you progress. The mode will also feature an online global leaderboard where players can compete in Daily Runs.
Guitar Free Play mode
Without spoiling too much for those who haven’t played, The Last of Us Part II features some guitar playing sections. This was so popular that Naughty Dog has introduced a new Guitar Free Play mode. As detailed by Naughty Dog:
“…a new Guitar Free Play mode, which will let you strum the strings across a host of unlockable instruments, use audio FX pedals to modulate your performance, and play as different characters in several in-game locations to customize the mood and feel of your set.”
While new modes are exciting, the highlight of a remaster is always the updated visuals and frame rate. Although The Last of Us Part II was playable on PlayStation 5, it wasn’t natively supported. With this remaster, we’ll be getting native 4K output in Fidelity Mode, 1440p upscaled to 4K in Performance Mode, an Unlocked Framerate option for televisions that support VRR, increased texture resolution, increased Level-of-Detail distances, improved shadow quality, animation sampling rate, and more
For those who already played the game, you can learn more about the process that when into its design and development. Naughty Dog is included a set of “Lost Levels,” playable sequences that were previously cut from the game. These are not fully finished levels but rather early-development slices that provide new glimpses into the game world, accompanied by embedded developer commentary to provide some context.
Game director Neil Druckmann, narrative lead Halley Gross, and actors Troy Baker, Ashley Johnson, and Laura Bailey have also recorded commentary that can play alongside the campaign’s cutscenes, offering additional insight into the story and characters.
Many would argue that it’s too soon for a remaster of The Last of Us Part II, especially since the game is only three years old. But with all these new features and game modes, it feels like a genuinely good time. Even better, those who already own the game on Ps4 can upgrade to the digital version of The Last of Us Part II Remastered for just $10.