Watching the trailer for HBO’s The Last of Us is honestly an eerie experience. For years, video game fans have become accustomed to sifting through early footage from TV and movie adaptations for familiar details; little hints that may indicate genuine affection for the source material. But here the resemblance is uncanny and everywhere. Even in live action, The Last of Us is instantly recognizable by its tall greenery and planks on the roof; his horseback rides and gloomy car rides on quiet highways with Ellie in the passenger seat; the triggering sound of the clickers, halfway between a Geiger counter and the revolving rattles at a 1960s football game. Even the logo’s familiar typeface, with its stubby tail to the “L,” is present and correct.

In a way, it’s no surprise. Those who have closely followed the development of the prestigious drama know that the fastidious screenwriter behind Chernobyl, Craig Mazin, shares showrunner status with Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann. Never before has a game creator been so closely involved in its adaptation for television. Yet it’s still surreal to wake up in an era where showrunners and game developers are finally working together, for mutual benefit.

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By wy9m6

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