The Last of Us Part II is a very heavy game, despite the fact that we called it a “masterpiece” in our review. The 25 or so hours of gameplay rarely leave you a moment to breathe, but if you’re a glutton for punishment and looking for more, we’ve got you covered. If you’re not content simply going back to Animal Crossing after journeying with Ellie, here are six of the best games to play after beating The Last of Us Part II.
Tomb Raider shares more in common with the Uncharted series than it does with The Last of Us Part II from a gameplay perspective. Story-wise, though, it fits better with the latter. Although all three of the reboot games could earn a spot on this list, we’re giving it to the 2013 release that started it all. Tomb Raider is an origin story for Lora Croft, and although it shares a lot of mechanics with Uncharted, it’s a much darker, much grittier story. For The Last of Us Part II fans, that’s a good thing.
It’s a grounded action tale, one that’s not worried about getting its hands too dirty. Instead of globetrotting and uncovering ancient relics, 2013’s Tomb Raider is much more about simply surviving. The follow-ups, Rise of the Tomb Raider and Shadow of the Tomb Raider, are great, though they verge more into blockbuster territory. This one is centralized. Tomb Raider doesn’t have quite the narrative punch of The Last of Us Part II, but it’s still an engrossing game with expertly crafted gameplay and, at the very least, a compelling story.
If we’re comparing apples to apples, Uncharted 4 is the best game to play once you’re done with The Last of Us Part II. It’s a Naughty Dog action-adventure game, so it feels a lot like The Last of Us. More importantly, though, the narrative is engaging without being nearly as heavy. Nathan Drake is one of the most lovable characters in all of gaming, and although Uncharted 4 sets the stakes high, they’re never above a well-timed joke. Uncharted 4 provides the same sense of moving from chapter to chapter without a clear idea of how the story will end up. However, you don’t need a tissue box and multiple breaks to make it through to the end credits.
That said, Uncharted 4 is undoubtedly the most grounded game in the series, clearly taking some notes from the success that was The Last of Us. The two directors from that game, Bruce Straley and Neil Druckmann, also headed the development for Uncharted 4, so both games carry a very similar feel. The fourth entry in Naughty Dog’s epic series sees a retired Nathan Drake breaking his monotonous routine for one final taste of adventure. Although the journey is just as bombastic as the previous games, Uncharted 4 has a story to tell, and that story extends beyond its impressive set pieces.
Read our Uncharted 4 review
Far Cry 5
If you’ve played Far Cry 3, you’ve pretty much played every game since. Although the graphics are improved with each release and the story updated, the core mechanics are, more or less, the same. Some long-time fans are experiencing a bit of burnout, but the Far Cry series is better than it has ever been. Far Cry 5, the latest release until early next year, doesn’t clear the bar set by Far Cry 3, but it comes right to it. Set in the fictional Hope County, you play as a sheriff’s deputy who’s tasked with arresting the leader of the Eden’s Gate doomsday cult, Joseph Seed. If you’ve played a Far Cry game before, you know what happens next. The arrest doesn’t go as planned, and you’re suddenly trapped within the walls of Eden’s Gate, trying to take it down from the inside.
Far Cry 5 couldn’t be more different than The Last of Us Part II in terms of gameplay. The former features an open world, gun combat is par for the course, and everything happens from a first-person perspective. There are two pieces of connective tissue, however. Far Cry 5, like The Last of Us Part II, rewards players who use stealth, and the narrative, although not nearly as dense as The Last of Us Part II, features plenty of twists and turns. Far Cry 5 isn’t an obvious game to play after The Last of Us Part II, but it’s a great one. At the very least, you can immerse yourself into an open world while you continue to explore the nasty depths of humanity.
Read our Far Cry 5 review
A Plague Tale: Innocence
A Plague Tale: Innocence isn’t a AAA blockbuster, but it sure feels like one. Outside of some well-received Disney games, Innocence is developer Asobo Studio’s first game, and it’s incredibly impressive. The game is a graphical powerhouse, developed on an engine that Asobo built in-house. For a relatively small development studio, that alone is a feat. A Plague Tale showcases amazing visuals, but the game stands out with its story.
You play as Amicia de Rune, a 15-year-old girl well versed in hunting. There’s trouble, though. Amicia’s 5-year-old brother, Hugo, is infected with an unknown illness. Caught between a plague and a war in 14th-century France, Amicia and her brother must escape the Inquisition, as well as other villagers who hold Hugo responsible for the outbreak. Out of all of the games on this list, A Plague Tale: Innocence is the most similar to The Last of Us Part II. The gameplay focuses on stealth, and although it’s engaging, the narrative is what will keep you playing until the end.
Telltale’s The Walking Dead
Telltale Games has been making games since 2005, but the studio only made a name for itself with the release of The Walking Dead. Like all Telltale titles, The Walking Dead is an adventure game with a story to tell. Your interactions are usually limited to dialogue choices, a few walking sections, and the ever-popular quick-time event. Although The Walking Dead features nowhere near the breadth of gameplay presented in The Last of Us Part II, it has a story for the ages, one that’s on par or even better than Naughty Dog’s grim sequel.
Although each individual season is relatively short — less than 10 hours apiece — the entire collection is huge. Between three seasons, two spin-offs, and a single expansion, Telltale’s The Walking Dead features almost 60 hours of gameplay. Like its source material, those hours are filled with death, disease, difficult choices, and of course, zombies. It doesn’t sound like the best way to spend a few afternoons, but if you played The Last of Us Part II and are looking for more, The Walking Dead can provide it in spades.
Read our The Walking Dead Season 1 review
Resident Evil 2 Remake
The Resident Evil 2 remake has a lot in common with The Last of Us Part II, even if the games look pretty dissimilar on the surface. Simply put, they’re both third-party action survival games, where planning each enemy encounter is critical to success. Like The Last of Us Part II, Resident Evil 2 has the same system of carefully managing your resources and constantly looking over your shoulder for a new threat. From a gameplay perspective, the two games are nearly identical. However, with Resident Evil 2, you’re getting a much more pulpy narrative with little in the way of realism. For the series, though, it works, and if gameplay is your bag, then that shouldn’t turn you away.
There is, however, one major difference between The Last of Us Part II and Resident Evil 2. The former saves approximately every 60 seconds (not an exaggeration, pause the game and you’ll see an autosave about every minute). In Resident Evil 2, you can only save at typewriters, which will undoubtedly be familiar to any Resident Evil fan. Worse, if you’re playing on Hardcore mode, you’re limited to the number of times you can save by a finite number of ink ribbons. Resident Evil 2 is a proper survival horror game, whereas The Last of Us Part II simply dabbles. Now is the perfect time to play, though, with the looming release of Resident Evil Village.
Read our Resident Evil 2 review
- The best Xbox One games for July 2020
- The best Xbox 360 games of all time
- The best PlayStation 4 exclusives
- The best single-player games (August 2020)
- Microsoft needs to bring these games to the Xbox Series X