Exploring the Similarities in Narrative Closure: The Last of Us 2 and Red Dead Redemption 2

  • Jared McKenzie
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Exploring the Similarities in Narrative Closure: The Last of Us 2 and Red Dead Redemption 2

Gaming enthusiasts worldwide have praised both The Last of Us 2 and Red Dead Redemption 2 for their powerful storytelling and immersive gameplay. A significant part of what makes these games so compelling is their unique approach to narrative closure, or rather, the lack thereof. This article will delve into how these highly acclaimed games have created a distinct emotional impact by leaving certain things unresolved.

At the heart of Red Dead Redemption 2, we find Arthur Morgan, a member of the Van der Linde Gang. He spends his life amongst the gang, committing various unspeakable acts but also forming deep relationships. The narrative of the game excellently portrays Arthur's struggle as he battles his terminal illness and makes the ultimate sacrifice for his fellow gang member, John Marston. However, the game intentionally leaves much unsaid between Arthur and John, creating a void filled with unexpressed emotions and unwrapped threads.

In a similar vein, The Last of Us 2 also employs this narrative technique. The game switches between the perspectives of Ellie and Abby, both of whom are on a journey of revenge and self-discovery. The sudden, abrupt end of their relationship with their father figures leaves both characters in a state of emotional turmoil. Like in Red Dead Redemption 2, the lack of closure in Ellie and Abby's journey is a critical narrative device that drives the story forward and keeps the players engaged.

Moreover, the lack of resolution in these games reflects the unpredictability and suddenness of real life. In our lives, we face unexpected losses, and we often struggle to find meaning in these circumstances. Both games encapsulate this feeling of trying to find closure where there seems to be none. This ability to mirror real-life situations makes both games highly relatable and, thus, incredibly immersive.

In conclusion, both The Last of Us 2 and Red Dead Redemption 2 have masterfully used the lack of narrative closure to deliver powerful, immersive experiences to their players. The complexity of the characters' relationships, their unexpressed emotions, and their struggles with sudden loss all contribute to the depth of the gaming experience. These games have not only redefined the boundaries of storytelling in video games but also shown us how unresolved narratives can create a profound emotional impact.

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