It’s no surprise that during a game’s development, content gets cut, either due to time, or just being out of place, it happens with every game out there. So it should come to no surprise that The Last of Us 2, despite how long it is, has had quite a bit of content cut. Game Director, Niel Druckmann and Lead Writer, Halley Gross open up a bit on The Last of Us 2 cut content. Fair warning, some of the content here can be considered spoilerish in nature.
Speaking to IndieWire, Druckmann, and Gross opened up about some of the ideas that didn’t make it into the final build of the game.
Again, another warning: Spoilers ahead.
Gross: We used to have five days in Seattle for each girl instead of three.
Druckmann: There was a whole side story where Ellie went to the Seraphite island, and we had so much more to say about the Seraphites and Ellie’s journey there and she’s going through like the different layers of Hell and she still keeps going forward.
Gross: Joel had a girlfriend. The ending was different.
Druckmann: In the farm sequence, you can find an entry in Ellie’s journal where she writes about killing this boar and how it makes her feel — we shot cut-scenes for that. There was a whole playable sequence of her hunting down a boar and it was awesome, but we felt that for pacing and production purposes it was just better to remove it. Art was done, and Ashley [Johnson] gave a great performance of how she kills this boar and everything.
Interestingly enough, there is some concept art that players can unlock in the game. While no in-game context is given (outside of the boar note), the details that both Gross and Druckmann provide line-up with that very same artwork. You can have a look down below from the concept art found in The Last of Us 2 extra menu, there’s even one of the deer that Druckmann spoke of during the same interview that was originally in place of the boar.
The Last of Us 2 Cut Content – Concept Art
And here’s some that may potentially be of Joel’s girlfriend
We thought this could have potentially been Dina, though the same chapter includes the concept art for Dina, which shows some noticeable different features. What’s more is that, if the images are indeed of Joel’s girlfriend, we may have an idea of where the story was heading as the same woman is seen in the early chapter’s concept art. We’ll let you look at those for yourself in-game, but they’re found in the Jackson art unlockables. They definitely give an interesting perspective of where the team was at with their early drafts.
Of course, being cut doesn’t necessarily mean it added more to what the game is already offering, nor take away. From the interview, it’s marked that pacing and productions were the reason why some of the content didn’t make it. With that in mind, perhaps this might be something fans may want to see as DLC? An expanded story that adds the additional 4 days (2 for Ellie, 2 for Abby) back into the game? Might be fun, or maybe an entirely separate character altogether? Let us know what you would like for DLC down below!