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The depiction of women in video games has been a highly controversial matter, but when The Last of Us was released in 2013 for the PlayStation 3, it garnered praise for its portrayal of female characters. In a world where women are constantly being demeaned in all media forms, is there a ray of light in the coming of The Last of Us 2?

Naughty Dog, the company responsible for the creation of The Last of Us, has dropped hints over the years regarding a sequel to their popular video game. Neil Druckmann, the creative director of the game, hinted in February 2014 that there was a 50/50 chance of a sequel but development also has to depend on a story that is worth telling. Voice actor Nolan North also let slip in June 2015 that Naughty Dog was doing a sequel to The Last of Us. In a response, Druckmann neither confirmed nor denied the possibility of a sequel but mentioned that ideas have been explored and prototypes have been built but work was halted in favor of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.

Since May 10, 2016 marked the release of Uncharted 4, surely Naughty Dog now has the free time to explore development of a sequel to The Last of Us. Given its success, it makes sense to provide a follow up. The last related update Naugty Dog made in relation to The Last of Us was the release of The Last of Us Remastered in 2014 for the PlayStation 4. In short, it’s due time for a sequel to be released.

But 2016 is about to draw to a close and it’s highly unlikely we’ll be hearing any development news. Then again, 2017 is knocking on the door and with the new year comes conferences and such where announcements can be made.

Although a 2017 release date was rumored for The Last of Us 2, that’s not looking to be the case. For now, the best case scenario would be a 2018 release date. Until then, we just have to wait for the new adventures of Joel and Ellie.