The Last of Us Part 2 was arguably one of the sweetest surprises for gamers last December, when developer Naughty Dog decided to give fans a sneak peek into the next blockbuster title. Since the initial trailer reveal, however, very little updates have been released about the game, resulting in numerous speculations about when TLOU Part 2 would actually be released. Considering Naughty Dog's own statements and current projects, however, there is a pretty good chance that The Last of Us Part 2 would see a mid-2018 release date at the earliest.
The reveal of the The Last of Us Part 2 trailer last year came as a surprise to numerous fans of the critically and commercially successful title. Considering that the first game wrapped up the survival story pretty well, it seemed that the journey of Ellie and Joel has definitively ended. As revealed in the sequel's teaser, however, this was not to be the case, as Ellie seemed to be getting ready to embark on a quest for revenge.
Numerous rumors and speculations from fans have emerged regarding the possible plot of the upcoming sequel, with many suggesting that Joel might have died at some point between the timeline of the two games. Since Naughty Dog Creative Director Neil Druckmann has said in a press release that the upcoming game would still be a tale of both Ellie and Joel, however, the rumors surrounding the latter's death appear to be ill-conceived.As for the release date of the upcoming blockbuster game, very little official information has been released by the developer, except for a statement saying that The Last of Us Part 2 is still "a ways off." Considering that Naughty Dog has a AAA release set for 2017, however, it becomes quite simple to predict when TLOU Part 2 might see an official release.
According to a recent report from the Daily Star, Druckmann announced during the recently held E3 2017 that this year would be focused solely on the adventures of Chloe and Nadine, the protagonists of Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, the latest installment in the critically acclaimed cinematic adventure franchise. As confirmed by Naughty Dog, the latest Uncharted title would be making a debut on August 22, 2017.Naughty Dog is not a huge company. Thus, the majority of its resources and manpower could only be dedicated to one AAA game one at a time. With this in mind, it appears safe to say that the developer would only be able to work on The Last of Us Part 2 after Uncharted: The Lost Legacy's release. After this, however, the developer would likely go all-in with the development of TLOU Part 2.
Since 2017 will be saved for Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, the release date for The Last of Us Part 2 would likely be released in 2018 at the earliest. The upcoming game, after all, commands a lot of effort in terms of storytelling and cinematics. If Naughty Dog does step on the gas as soon as it can dedicate its resources to The Last of Us Part 2, the highly anticipated game could make a debut as early as mid-2018. Otherwise, a late-2018 to early-2019 release might be on the cards.[Featured Image by Naughty Dog]