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Naughty Dog on The Last of Us PS4: ‘Just Getting an Image Onscreen Took a Long Time’

May 9, 2014 Written by Jason Dunning

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As part of a large interview in the latest issue of EDGE magazine, The Last of Us Creative Director Neil Druckmann has already revealed that the models for the characters in The Last of Us Remastered for PS4 are “on par” with what you saw in the PS3 version’s cutscenes.

Elsewhere in the interview (via IB Times), Druckmann said the development of The Last of Us on PS4 was expected to be hell, “and it was hell.” He discussed what he meant by that:

Just getting an image onscreen, even an inferior one with the shadows broken, lighting broke, and with it crashing every 30 seconds… that took a long time.

These engineers are some of the best in the industry and they optimized the game so much for the PS3′s SPUs specifically. It was optimized on a binary level, but after shifting those things over [to PS4] you have to go back to the high level, make sure the systems are intact, and optimize it again.

I can’t describe how difficult a task that is. And once it’s running well, you’re running the [versions] side by side to make sure you didn’t screw something up in the process, like physics being slightly off, or lighting being shifted, and all of a sudden it’s a drastically different look. That’s not ‘improved’ anymore; that’s different. We want to stay faithful while being better.

For a couple of the odds and ends regarding The Last of Us Remastered, Druckmann said the Left Behind DLC episode wouldn’t be playable until you clear the main game, while the cinematic commentary featuring Druckmann, Troy Baker, and Ashley Johnson will be available immediately.