Watch HBO’s upcoming 46-second footage Last of Us It elicited the same feeling that Sean Escaig had when he first stepped into the game studio’s Naughty Dog in 2012.
Escayg had been adopted by the developer who brought us here. unknown And now I wanted to make a post-apocalyptic sci-fi adventure. It’s about a guy and a girl brought together by circumstance while traveling through the wreckage of a pandemic-torn America. Escayg found himself in the same room as the game director Bruce Straley and his creative director Neil Druckmann behind this new project. He was immediately drawn into the story.
“The theme of the ends justifying the means? Exploring both the beauty and the darkness of unconditional love,” Escayg muses in an interview with EW. It felt like thunder in a bottle.”
“Lightning in a Bottle” is how he describes the first footage of HBO’s TV adaptation that arrived during its premiere. House of the Dragon This game, which he has been working on for nearly 10 years since its release in 2013, feels like it is opening up a new frontier. “This story could expand across mediums and reach a wider audience that could potentially draw more fans to the franchise,” he says. is supposed to be relived.”
Escayg is Last of Us than most. The same can be said for Matthew Gallant, who worked on the original as a game designer before rising to a higher position as a game director. The Last of Us Part I, a ground-up remake of the award-winning original game that breathes new life into the story. Escayg served as the creative director for this project, which was released today on PlayStation 5. They are also two of the few of him who can truly understand why. Last of Us Why is that legacy fueling the HBO series’ hype?
“I got goosebumps watching it” [HBO] Gallant said:
HBO Pedro Pascal and Vera Ramsey Debut as Joel and Ellie on HBO’s ‘The Last of Us’
Those who haven’t played Last of Us or consumed one of its successors — remastered, The Last of Us Part II A sequel, or an accompanying comic — you might be drawn to HBO’s upcoming drama through Star: game of thrones Veterans Pedro Pascal and Vera Ramsey.They never shared the screen when they appeared as Prince Oberyn Martell and Lady Lyanna Mormont of Dawn in that fantasy series, but now they’re stuck together Last of Us as Joel and Ellie.
The drama, which premieres next year, introduces Joel as a staunch survivor living in a repressively militarized quarantine zone, one of the last human settlements in the United States. This is years after a fungal plague ravaged humanity, turning infected people into zombified monsters. Dandridge), working shady jobs with her friend Tess (Anna Torv). His job is to smuggle 14-year-old girl Ellie out of her quarantine area and hand her over to an outside contact. don’t ask. that’s the job. take it or leave it. Joel and Ellie begin a seemingly small mission and embark on a grueling adventure across the country.
Anyone who has played a video game is familiar with the pressure on the shoulders of adaptation, but also the excitement of what can be done well. Last of Us sold a staggering 1.3 million units in the first three days of 2013. This was the biggest game launch of the year at the time. Three weeks later, it was the biggest original game launch since 2011. It broke sales records and garnered accolades including awards for Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson, the voice actors of Joel and Ellie.
What made this game such an immediate impact? It’s clear to both Escaig and Gallant.
“Bruce and Neil had a vision. and then watch the movie,” recalls Gallant of an early meeting with the creative team. “When you’re controlling a character, we call it ‘on the stick. They said, “When you’re on a stick, everything that happens there tells a story. If you go back to gameplay, you’ll see the story there.”
Everything about the game told a story. Players can learn more about how the world came about through combat (Joel’s way of fighting becomes a very clear indication of his character) and the environment (a note found at the feet of a corpse in the corner). ) to pick up the pieces. to do). It was also very cinematic.
Escayg, worked as an animator at ILM in 2011 Transformers: Dark of the Moonhave never been involved in a video game before Last of UsHe remembers complaining to Druckmann about the cinematography and Druckmann telling him to improve it. “The challenge was how to create an experience that felt like you were playing the movie version,” he says. “Even if I didn’t know how far it would go, I knew something was special. I knew I was on top of something.”
“I think it had a ripple effect throughout the gaming industry,” adds Gallant. “Now a lot of other studios have taken that torch and that approach and said, ‘No, story is not just what happens in the cutscenes between video games. Everything is story.’ We are trying to coordinate all systems and all decisions for the sake of
all the feel
naughty dog Joel fights off the clickers in ‘The Last of Us’
Escayg and Gallant found themselves in a similar position to the creators of HBO. Last of Us(Craig Mazin’s Chernobyl Co-created the series and executive produced with Druckmann. ) they must make their own mark on him one of the most beloved game franchises of all time. The Last of Us Part I remakes the original game using current technology designed for PlayStation 5, including enhancements to photorealistic visuals, lighting, combat, audio and more.
“It’s a lot of pressure on ourselves as a team to come close to arguably one of the greatest games ever made and try to make it better,” says Escayg. “It’s just that burden that was and still is with us today. We feel intense pressure to do it right and improve the franchise by the original team that did this work. Because Because we have a deep love for it too..”
Ultimately, we wanted to keep the core experience that gamers played. Last of Us In 2013, it relied heavily on the study of the core characters and the moral questions posed by the story: How far will a person go to survive and protect their loved ones? is that we are affected differently at different stages of life,” Gallant points out. “I have found it to be true Last of Us.”
make The Last of Us Part I, Gallant became even more devastated by the dynamic between Joel and Ellie since becoming a father a few years after the original game was released. “The journey Last of Us The game follows Ellie and Joel, who initially distrust and hate each other, are on bad terms to some extent, and go through the events of the story to become close and dependent on each other, almost becoming fathers. daughter relationship. “
Gallant feels that the game’s emotional beats are all heightened “with character fidelity and cinematic improvements,” but it’s his own connection to the story that resonates most. , also applies to the Escaig, which concerns the brothers Henry and Sam, two figures Joel and Ellie meet on their journey. (Lamar Johnson plays Henry in the HBO drama, and Kevon Woodard plays Sam.)
“There’s a lot of conflict in that brother-brother relationship,” he says. “He’s like your dad, but not. When your little brother gets older, they start challenging you. ‘You’re not my dad.'” That’s the dynamic of a toy store, for example. The toy store scene occurs shortly after Joel and Ellie meet in the game. Sam finds a robot figure in an abandoned toy store, but Henry reminds them of their rule of taking only what they can carry. It’s a very intimate moment.”
It is these same kinds of connections that have attracted many Last of Us And perhaps that’s why Hollywood has been trying to adapt the game for years. It wasn’t until 2020 that HBO announced that it would officially move forward with the TV series.
That’s clearly a big focus for HBO. House of the Dragon, Last of Us was the highlight. The footage began with shots of Pascal’s Joel and Ramsey’s Ellie walking across a snow-covered bridge with a gun at hand.
Neither are part of the show’s development, but both Escaig and Gallant were impressed with the authenticity of the teaser footage, down to the specific clothing the actors were wearing.
“They really care about the direction of the art,” says Gallant. “A two-second clip of an infected person embedded in a wall. It looks like they’ve just stepped out of the game. What the character’s outfit looks like. How they say certain lines in the trailer. Adaptations of video games often say: Not so..they often get very big creative licenses in the original franchise..which seems to be very true to the original game..and love the original game As a person, I’m very excited to see it explored in another medium…”