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Naughty Dog Combats The Last Of Us Leaks

Ever since leaks confirmed fans' suspicions about its development, gamers have been eagerly awaiting the release of Naughty Dog's new remake, "The Last of Us Part 1." Launching on Sept. 2 for the PS5, the dramatic third-person shooter promises an overhauled experience, including updated graphics, animations, and sound. The special "Firefly" edition of the game will also feature new weapons skins and a speedrun mode, among other bonuses. Avoiding one of its biggest controversies, Naughty Dog has also managed to develop the game without resorting to crunch time. The unpleasant practice of forcing employees to work extended hours to get a new game out the door has been a hot-button issue for the industry, and Naughty Dog in particular.

While all these developments should be welcome news for fans, recent leaks seemed to have confirmed some of the fears surrounding the upcoming game, and Naughty Dog is having a tough time pushing back. Over the last few days, multiple screenshots and clips from the remake have allegedly surfaced across social media, and although they've mostly been deleted, fans like ResetEra user ImBald have rounded up many of the details gleaned from these samples.

The most surprising conclusion that has been drawn from these leaks is that the gameplay has apparently not seen many updates from the original version of "The Last of Us." As noted by ImBald, "Leaker says most gameplay improvements are animations and audio," along with some updated accessibility features. This claim would also seem to directly contradict the official PlayStation page for the for the game which promises "modernized gameplay, improved controls," and host of other features. So how has Naughty Dog responded to these leaks?

Naughty Dog shows off more of The Last of Us Part 1

The leakers' claims will likely be disheartening to those who hoped the remake would incorporate some of the improvements made and lessons the developer learned in "The Last of Us Part 2." Luckily for those disappointed fans, Naughty Dog has since released a video that dives into some of the less-obvious changes that have been made to update the experience in "Part 1."

Posted to the official PlayStation YouTube channel, the video shows off a closer look at the remake's improved animation, which captures much more realistic reactions from its characters and brings the in-game performances much closer to the original actors' motion capture. The game's environments will be more destructible, adding to immersion in combat. But beyond that, "Part 1" utilizes the AI improvements seen in the 2020 sequel, which means that enemies and friendly NPCs will have more complex interactions with the player — and offer more of a challenge, in some cases. In other words, it does appear that players who are intimately familiar with "The Last of Us" will notice some difference in how the game plays in its updated form.

Naughty Dog is no stranger to leaks, nor to doing damage control in the wake of them. After all, major plot details for "The Last of Us Part 2" leaked online just days before the game was released, and the very existence of the "Part 1" remake was leaked the day of the game's official announcement. While the latest gameplay video certainly looks promising, fans will just have to wait and see if they really feel a difference when "The Last of Us Part 1" launches this September.