The Last of Us Part 2: The 3 Most Important New Details From the Story Trailer

In the aftermath of Naughty Dog's brand new The Last of Us Part 2 story trailer, we break down a few new and important scenes from the game.

Naughty Dog fans were in for a delight yesterday as the brand new story trailer for The Last of Us Part 2 dropped ahead of the game’s arrival next month on June 19. The previous trailer we got to witness was all the way back in September, which showcased Ellie and Dina on horseback and also finally revealed a whey-faced and considerably older Joel. This time, however, we got to witness a savage and rage-induced trailer that sent chills down our backs. While we all weren’t expecting rainbows and butterflies, the trailer certainly hit home this time of the brutal and heart-wrenching journey that Ellie has to undertake. Although there were some clips seen before in previous trailers, some new scenes appeared that could give a little context to this dire quest for revenge.

The synopsis for the new The Last of Us Part 2 story trailer reads: “After a vicious and violent event disrupts the relative peace that Ellie has found in Jackson, she sets out to bring justice to those responsible. As she hunts them down one by one, she is confronted with the devastating physical and emotional repercussions of her actions.” From those lines alone, it seems that this chaotic violence between ordinary people has taken a devastating toll on Ellie.

While carefully studying the trailer from beginning to end, we noticed some new information that hadn’t been touched upon before, so without further ado, let’s dive into what those details are and even what they could possibly mean for The Last of Us Part 2.

*Editor’s Note: the following details are taken from the context of the story trailer only, and do not mention or include anything from the recent story leaks that appeared for The Last of Us Part 2.*

Joel Teaches Ellie How to Play the Guitar

At the beginning of the trailer, we finally see that Joel has kept his promise to Ellie that he would teach her how to play the guitar. In The Last of Us, right as they both passed through the bus depot, Joel turns to Ellie as they wander through the unkept road and tells her that once they are done with this whole thing, he will teach her to play the guitar, and he thinks she would like that.

As we see in the new trailer, Joel is sitting down strumming his guitar as Ellie lovingly looks on. It’s probably the only time throughout the entire trailer that we see any form of tenderness. At Sony’s PlayStation Experience event in 2016, we saw The Last of Us Part 2 reveal trailer which showed that Ellie can now play the guitar pretty well and also do a fine job of tuning it up herself – all thanks to Joel keeping his word.

The Moth Design on Joel’s Guitar

From the very first reveal trailer and all the way to the new story trailer, Ellie’s tattoo has been a focal point of interest. The speculation is that the tattoo covers Ellie’s bite marks–hiding the scars from an infected bite–and since she is immune, covering it would be a sensible idea given that other survivors could make her feel unwelcome in their communities. Another rumor is that the moth is a symbol of transformation and wanting to start new, which would be appropriate for Ellie’s journey at this point.

Both of these ideas have a solid foundation and both, in fact, could very well be accurate. But what I noticed while scanning Joel’s guitar is that there is a moth design on its neck, closest to the headstock. This tattoo looks to be an exact replica of Ellie’s fern and moth tattoo. Of course, this could mean anything from a tribute to Joel and Ellie’s memory together of her learning the guitar, or this moth design could be inscribed elsewhere too that eventually, through gameplay, unveils a deep meaning. I’m hopeful that when we get to play The Last of Us Part 2, we will get to see Ellie receive her now iconic tattoo and discover the real meaning behind it.

Ellie’s Escalated Rage

We’ve known from the start that The Last of Us Part 2 is going to be horrific and dark. Neil Druckmann stated that they are “making a game about the cycle of violence and we’re making a statement about violent actions and the impact they have on the character that’s committing them and on the people close to them.” Druckmann also stated that he wanted to “treat this (game) as realistically as possible and to get the player to feel that.”

From previous trailers, we’ve seen Ellie’s anger raise its head through the means of killing and words like “I’m going to find… and I’m going to kill… every last one of them” but we haven’t seen her as manic and as riddled with rage as we’ve seen her in the above scene. Face coated in blood, we see Ellie looking down at something (or someone) and even though the image is one of fury, her eyes speak of regret or devastation. This either could be the blood of someone else she cares about deeply, or it could be the aftermath of a full-on massacre. Either way, we witness Ellie in a state of frenzy that we’ve never seen before.

Whatever the full context in The Last of Us Part 2 surrounds, I can’t wait to explore it further. Even with the spoilers circling the internet, nothing can stop this game from happening nor the excitement that it induces in its fans. On social media last week, Naughty Dog released a statement regarding the leaks and told fans that the end result will still be worth it. “We know the last few days have been incredibly difficult for you. We feel the same. It’s disappointing to see the release and sharing of pre-release footage from development,” said Naughty Dog’s message. “Do your best to avoid spoilers and we ask that you don’t spoil it for others.” The game’s director, Neil Druckmann, also put his two cents in whilst being obviously upset by the situation, and explained that he is “Heartbroken for the team. Heartbroken for our fans.” However, he left things on an optimistic note that “we’re still incredibly excited to get the game into your hands.”

As with any game, please do be respectful and mindful of those who wish to not be spoiled by game leaks. No matter what your opinion is on why they were leaked in the first place, years of hard work from the devs and years of patiently waiting by players is paramount right now. Don’t be that person.

As hard as it’s going to be for fans over the next few weeks to avoid spoilers, just remember we don’t have much longer to wait for The Last of Us Part 2 as we now have a new official release date on the calendar. The game will arrive exclusively on PS4 later this summer on June 19, 2020.

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Rachael Fiddis

Rachael, who is Deputy Editor, has been gaming for many years. Some of her favourite video games include The Witcher 3 and The Last of Us but also loves a good indie title. Gaming Culture is where her heart lies and spends many hours sieving through gaming fan art and cosplay displays. Other than gaming, Rachael is a book nerd and music lover.

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