I think we might have our first truly great adaptation here (Gaming)

by CruelLEGACEY @, Toronto, Monday, March 22, 2021, 14:45 (190 days ago) @ Kermit

If Druckmann helped keep the focus on character like he did in the original game, then color me cautiously optimistic.

I have no opinion on whether the show is likely to be good or not, but the question I do have is: what will the show bring to the table above and beyond the game? The game was paced wonderfully, and roughly equal in length to many modern television “seasons”. The performances were also top-notch. The TV show will need to at least match the quality of those performances, while also staying “true” to the original portrayals of the characters... no small feat.

There’s also the issue of what gets lost by moving away from the video game medium. It isn’t obvious to me that some of the key dramatic payoffs in the story of TLoU will hit as hard without the experience of actively participating in some of the more chaotic/impactful moments. The article specifically mentions the fact that they don’t need as much action in the tv series, but that skips over the fact that the game incorporated action as part of the emotional ebb and flow of the narrative. Sometimes a particularly stressful stealth section was used to increase the sense of tension or dread. Other times, the action was more cathartic. A tv series can obviously use action in similar ways, but not necessarily to the same degree. Plus, if you were to approach the story of The Last of Us as a TV editor, the typical approach would be to only include action sequences that move the plot forward and/or convey something important about the characters. For tv and film, that’s a decent rule of thumb, and could work just fine for an adaptation of TLoU. Again, I just keeping thinking: “But... why?”. What will this adaptation bring to the table?

Of course, it’s totally possible that the answer to my question is simply “a wider audience”. I have plenty of friends with whom I wanted to share TLoU because I thought they’d really enjoy it, but they aren’t gamers. And as I discovered, those YouTube “games as movies” videos don’t do it justice. Maybe this adaptation will be close enough to allow non-gamers to experience it decently well.

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