Story-Driven Games Like 'The Last of Us' Have Existed for Decades — Here Are Some Recommendations

Callie (Carlos) Cadorniga - Author

Mar. 15 2023, Published 5:07 p.m. ET

Story driven games like 'The Last of Us'
Source: PlayStation

Since the premiere of The Last of Us on HBO, live-action adaptations of video games are being seen in a whole new light. For gamers, it's an opportunity for them to relive the gripping emotional narrative of the original PlayStation game in a new way. For others, though, an entire medium of storytelling has just opened up to them. In a recent TikTok, a fan of the Last of Us series was shocked to discover that video games had "incredible plots and character development."

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While the TikTok itself was met with mixed reactions, many in the comments have brought up the same point. Story-driven games like The Last of Us have existed for decades. They were around long before TLOU came out in 2013 and have continued to come out since.

If we were to start listing every single video game with incredible stories, we'd be here all day. But if you're just diving into this fresh from TLOU series hype, check out our list of games similar in style to The Last of Us.

The 'Uncharted' series

The Last of Us came from developer Naughty Dog, who previously released the popular Uncharted game series. It follows treasure hunter Nathan Drake as he travels the globe in search of mysterious buried treasure.

These four games draw plenty of inspiration from films like Indiana Jones, putting players in the shoes of an adventurer in each thrilling and captivating installment. If you're already a fan of The Last of Us, you may want to check out the Uncharted games on PlayStation consoles.

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'God of War' (2018)

Though the original God of War games are known for their gratuitous, over-the-top violence, the soft reboot delivers a gripping, emotional tale about fatherhood with gratuitous, over-the-top violence. The game follows Kratos, a fallen god who journeys with his young son Atreus as they travel the Nine Realms of Midgar to honor a promise they made.

God of War is available on PlayStation 4 and 5 as well as PC. You can also play the sequel, God of War: Ragnarok.

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'Ghost of Tsushima'

Drawing heavy inspiration from old Japanese samurai films, this game presents a dramatized account of the first Mongol invasion of Japan.

It follows Jin Sakai, a samurai who seeks to protect his home of Tsushima Island from the Mongols. However, he finds himself having to choose between fighting by the warrior code with which he was trained or by using dishonorable killing methods.

Featuring a vast open world and sprawling narrative, Ghost of Tsushima is just as much a cinematic experience as it is a game.

Play it on PlayStation consoles.

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'Marvel's Spider-Man'

Do you enjoy Marvel but also can't keep up with all the movies and shows they keep pumping out for the MCU? Then Marvel's Spider-Man on PlayStation and PC can scratch your itch.

This self-contained Spidey story follows NYC's favorite wall-crawler on a sandbox adventure that hits just as well as your favorite Spidey movie. Following the arrest of crime lord Wilson Fisk, Spider-Man fights against villains caught up in the power vacuum left by Kingpin's absence.

You can also check out the Miles Morales sequel.

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'Batman Arkham' series

But if DC is more your style, then look no further than the Batman Arkham games. This popular trilogy (and one prequel that we don't necessarily talk about) lets you don the cowl of the Caped Crusader as Batman protects the streets of Gotham from its most heinous villains.

If you've been down on the state of the DCEU lately, then the Arkham games will assuredly scratch your itch for solid DC stories. The Arkham series is available on all major gaming consoles.

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'The Last of Us Part II'

Okay, we're cheating a little on this one, but if a fan of the show and you're eager to find out what happens next in Ellie's and Joel's story, then you can get a head start before the second season comes out with The Last of Us Part II. The game follows Ellie five years after the events of the first game. She's older, more experienced, and makes her own bid for survival in the Cordyceps infestation.

The game is available on PlayStation 4 and 5.

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Honestly, these are just the tip of the iceberg. Just as there are several genres of TV shows or books, there's an infinite number of different styles of games, many of which deliver heart-pounding, captivating, tear-jerking stories in their own way.

If you're just getting started with The Last of Us on TV, then these games are a good place to get a similar experience. But a whole universe of games with compelling stories awaits you if you decide to venture further.

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