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Use Auto-Aim And Hard Difficulty In The Last Of Us And Uncharted



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Naughty Dog games are generally not too difficult. While the developer churned out some tough levels in the Crash Bandicoot days, The Last of Us and Uncharted are pretty forgiving. Both series have always had multiple challenges, and over the years they’ve added a host of accessibility options that allow players to tweak the gaming experience until it’s perfect for them.

So if you don’t like the puzzles in The Last of Us Part 1, you can skip them (which was really helpful when I encountered a buggy puzzle that would have completely halted my progress otherwise). If you’re having trouble finding objects in the environment, you can turn on the radar in The Last of Us Part 2 and ping an object when the wave passes by. In The Last of Us Part 1, you can even switch to a control option designed to allow players with disabilities to play the entire game with one hand.


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These accessibility settings make the game better for everyone. They help include gamers who might not otherwise enjoy the games, and they provide a wealth of options for everyone else. In fact, while playing Uncharted 4, these options led me to the optimal way to play a modern Naughty Dog game: on hard mode (or higher) with auto-aim enabled.

If that sounds strange, let me explain. While I love Naughty Dog’s games, filming has historically not been enjoyable by default. When I booted up The Last of Us Part 1 recently, I was surprised by how apathetic Joel’s goal felt. When he peeked his head out to take a picture, he rarely faced where I wanted him to face. The Last of Us Part 2 fixes this by defaulting aim assist to the top from the start. But, in The Last of Us Part 1, Joel isn’t quite sure where to point the gun, which makes the game harder than it should be. Luckily, Naughty Dog’s accessibility settings give you an option beyond just lowering the difficulty. Instead, you can activate aim lock or aim assist.

I do this, then increase the difficulty to Hard. It allows me to focus on the things I want to focus on. The last time I played The Last of Us, with the PS4 remaster, I ran through it on normal mode. The PS3 version was one of the first games I played when I picked up the game, and I was so rusty by then that every win was hard-earned. So hard-earned, in fact, that the second time I played it, every level was seared into my muscle memory. I was a whirlwind of weapons ripping through each level without pause.

So when I replayed on PS5, I wanted more of a challenge with stealth. Setting the game to Hard, which made resources slightly scarcer and enemies more attentive, was the challenge I needed. The struggle with Joel’s goal was not. Likewise, when I played Uncharted 4 and The Lost Legacy earlier this year, I wanted to focus on swinging over vines and scaling cliffs like a mighty adventurer, not moving slowly. crosshairs towards an enemy’s head.

Although Naughty Dog’s games are quite traditionally structured, it’s a way for them to feel downright futuristic. While there’s a legitimate debate about how a game like Elden Ring – where challenge is an integral part of the experience – should handle accessibility, that’s not the case here. For the kind of story-driven games that Naughty Dog makes, the more options, the better.

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