The Last of Us Part 2 may have launched without a Factions mode, but even in the absence of an official, formal announcement, it’s pretty much common knowledge at this point that a standalone The Last of Us multiplayer project is in the works at Naughty Dog. Now, datamining done by YouTuber Speclizer may have uncovered some potential details on what to expect from it.
Leftover files found in The Last of Us Part 2 seem to hint at some details about its once-planned multiplayer component. For starters, there’s mention of multiplayer-related items such as a Handheld TV, a Listen Mode device, and a Collar, and it’s pretty easy to figure out what the latter two are about. A Listen Mode device will likely be an item that will allow players to use the Listen Mode mechanic (which means it won’t otherwise be available by default), while the Collar is likely related to dogs, which were introduced as a new enemy type in The Last of Us Part 2. Additionally, models of armour items and the backpack have also supposedly been discovered in the game.
Notably, a map has also been found in the game, which was likely to be used for multiplayer purposes. The map seems to be a large area comprised of several areas from the campaign stitched together, including the likes of Port of Camallito, Adler Park, Gas Station, and more. The size of the map seems to suggest the existence of a battle royale mode. Additionally, Speclizer also wrote in a comment on the video that though they didn’t mention it in the video itself, they also discovered an emote wheel script, a compass, and a player count string, which is something else that points to a battle royale experience.
Of course, what with The Last of Us Part 2 having ultimately dropped Factions and the mode seemingly in the works as a standalone project, there’s every possibility that plans may have changed and Naughty Dog is working on different things. That said, a battle royale mode in The Last of Us’ multiplayer would work rather well.
A couple of months ago, Naughty Dog confirmed via job listings that it was working on its first ever standalone multiplayer game. Before that, earlier this year, reports claimed that Days Gone developer SIE Bend Studio had provided development support for The Last of Us’ multiplayer project.