The Last of Us Part 1 (PC) Review – Clickers and Stutters

The Last of Us Part 1 on PC Review: The Overview

The Last of Us Part 1 is one of the most lauded games of its generation. Formerly a PlayStation exclusive, the Naughty Dog game has come to PC for the first time since its release. Now, PC ports can come with many challenges that do not always highlight the best aspects of any given game. The heart of the game survives but the gameplay itself may suffer from issues. In this case, The Last of Us Part 1 on PC does not stray from this concept. Despite retaining its heart and soul in the form of narrative, and even great gameplay mechanics, the port to PC is riddled with technical issues. 

The Last of Us on PC

Of course, these issues impose problems with the game itself. The narrative and base gameplay feels good. However, the technical issues surrounding the launch of the port caused the experience to suffer. In a game that is so heavily dependent on a player’s experience within a contained narrative, these issues aren’t exactly easily ignorable. This isn’t to say the port got nothing right. We will eventually discuss the good that Naughty Dog does in bringing such a beloved game to PC. 

Yet overall, these issues affect the immersion of the game. Despite looking great, it’s hard to get into fighting Clickers when visual bugs, game crashes, and more technical messes cause lag or force restarts. In my experience playing, these issues can be motivation killers. They turn a beautiful story, with engaging gameplay, into something I need to force myself to boot back up. They introduce critical roadblocks to an otherwise enjoyable experience. 

Technical Difficulties

The most glaring, and perhaps one of the only, issues of The Last of Us on PC is the sheer amount of technical difficulties. Despite having a PC that is more than capable of running the game on high settings, trying to do so was often met with problems. The game frequently stutters, causing lag and visual glitches. Of course, these stutters can affect gameplay. It’s hard to aim properly when the game jumps around for moments at a time. Furthermore, the stuttering and graphical lag is frustrating in its most basic form. 

The Last of Us on PC

Yet, there was more. During my playthrough of the game, there were a few crashes that would just close the game. It is important to note, that the game only crashed three times during this playthrough. Though after the second, the graphics were reduced to ensure the game could function properly. 

However, despite stuttering and a few crashes, there were no graphical glitches. For instance, characters didn’t clip into the ground, have strange anatomy, or have any other visual glitch aside from texture issues. Yet, the stuttering was almost a constant that persists through multiple areas of the game getting better and worse depending on the surroundings. Interestingly, there never seemed to be a setting in graphics that could fix it. Even setting graphics to the lowest, the stutter stayed. 

Overall, the technical difficulties of playing the game on PC did detract from the experience. It became more of a struggle to enjoy the experience, instead of just experiencing the game. It became frustrating, reaching memorable parts of the lauded story, and having to deal with fuzzy textures or stuttering in the game. Yet the technical issues, though annoying, weren’t the be-all and end-all of The Last of Us PC’s port’s experience. 

The Gameplay: Glitches and Crashes Aside 

When the game isn’t stuttering or messing with textures, it looks fantastic. The graphical quality, even when not on the highest settings, is impressive to say the least. It feels with every rendition of the game Naughty Dog finds a way to bring more life-like features to the characters and environments. More expression, better lighting, colors, and more. 

Additionally, the controls for the PC version of the game feel awesome. They are fluid and function with no real problems. Looking around with the mouse feels easy, and the combat flows well with no annoying keybinds. Even the inventory system was easy to use with crafting mechanics transitioning seamlessly to the PC version. 

The Last of Us on PC

Of course, the combat was great. Aiming ranged weapons with the mouse was fluid, easy, and effective. When it wasn’t stuttering, that is. Melee combat was repetitive but satisfying. The game does a great job of making the impacts feel damaging using audio and camera effects. Furthermore, stealth and movement translated great to the PC version, making each encounter feel exciting and engaging despite the issues that may or may not show up during play. 

The main narrative of the game is, of course, the same. Yet, during the times without graphical issues, the new expressions from characters and the graphical design may make tense, sad, or exciting moments even more so. Also, the camera mode allows for a great deal of really cool features to get awesome screenshots of the game during cutscenes and gameplay. 

Realistically, patches that are coming for the game may continue to make The Last of Us on PC even better. If the patches can improve the playability then the port will become akin to its console predecessors and contemporaries. However, for now, the crashes, visual bugs, texture glitches, and stuttering is not something that can be ignored. Until then, if you’re a first-time The Last of Us player and you’re looking for a seamless and non-buggy experience on PC, it may be better to wait for patches to truly get the best out of this incredible story and game.

**PC Game Key Provided by Publisher**  

The Good

  • Tight Controls
  • Excellent Story
  • Great Voice Acting
  • Fun Gameplay

The Bad

  • Multiple visual bugs
  • Crashes
  • Stuttering
  • Texture Glitches