The Last of Us is being hailed as the very best of the best for Survival Horror fans. It’s rated Mature (M) for Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Sexual Themes, and Strong language, but these barely scratch the surface of what is in this game.
The Last of Us puts the player in the shoes of Joel and Ellie, survivors in a post-apocalyptic world where Zombie-like creatures have infected a portion of the population. Not only do you fight these scary “Zombies,” the game also pits you against tons of desperate and ruthless humans. It’s gritty, brutal, disturbing, and violent. Plenty of weapons such as guns, spiked bats, steel pipes, knives, and even fists are used frequently and there are a number of disturbing things to see both in cut-scenes and gameplay.
The Blood, Gore, and Violence levels in this game are high with excessive splatter effects and occasional dismemberment or beheading. And whenever the player is killed the game portrays a short, but grisly death animation. Often, losing throats to zombies or being stabbed by humans. In one scene you see cannibalistic humans chopping up another human for meat. In another scene a character tortures and kills several men slowly. Very graphic.
The game does not stop there. Characters are often executed without warning or pity. In one cut-scene, we see a very young girl get shot and then watch her die. In another a young boy gets infected, is shot, and then his brother commits suicide. In fact, as you go through the game there are a number of implied suicides found in houses, occasionally mentioning children.
The disturbing content is high and the brutality does not seem to stop. The language is terrible with F-bombs and other curses shouted almost non-stop. The sexual themes however are brief. The character Ellie, who is only 14, finds a dirty magazine and talks about it briefly. Later in the game another character implies that he’d like to “get close” to Ellie but talking about it is as far as the Sexual themes go.
Overall I would say this game set out to create a disturbing, gritty, and violent take on a post-apocalyptic world and did a fantastic job. But that being said it is an incredibly Adult title. Children being killed, Excessive Gore, Disturbing Images, Strong Language, and Nonstop violence are what make up the gameplay for this title. I wouldn't recommend the Last of Us for anyone under the age of 18.