Remember that awful looking The Last of Us clone, The Last Hope, that got released earlier this month? Well, it turns out the game is much worse than the trailer first suggested. Apparently, the whole game is only about 20 minutes long, takes place in one street, and is a broken mess.
Let’s cast our minds back to last week. That’s when a horrible-looking Nintendo Switch The Last of Us clone went viral online. A trailer for the game looked like a blatant copy of Naughty Dog’s award-winning franchise, complete with its own Ellie-like companion. It was even called The Last Hope. Yeah, the people who made it weren’t being subtle about where they were pulling their “inspiration” from. Most would agree, it looked bad, but now thanks to Digital Foundry, it’s clear this is much worse than we thought. In fact, it might be the worst game of 2023.
In a new upload on Thursday, the video game tech analysts at Digital Foundry ripped The Last Hope apart in a video that is about as long as the actual game.
Where to even begin? For starters—this might be the most shocking—the entire game seems to take place mainly on one U-shaped street in a generic city. Thanks to the game’s reliance on Unity store props, it’s a rather confusing place. American flags can be seen next to European power outlets. Other assets also don’t seem to work together, with some being far too detailed compared to other, lower-res objects scattered about.
When you actually start to play The Last Hope, you’ll also notice that the framerate is horrendous, often dipping well below 30. This makes it hard to play, as the game’s performance goes up and down constantly. What also makes it hard to play is that the game seems to have barely been playtested. As shown in the Digital Foundry video, it gives the player very limited resources.
For example, your stamina meter doesn’t recharge over time, limiting how many times you can swing your baseball bat. And there are only three MREs, that partially refill your stamina, in the entire game. Bullets are also rare, meaning that if you miss too many shots you could end up in an unwinnable situation.
At one part, players have to use a lockpick to unlock a police car, and while doing this you can be killed by zombies. The problem is the game doesn’t tell you this is happening. So you do your lockpicking, finish, and exit to a screen that simply states “You Dead.” This means that you’ll need to clear out the area of zombies before starting the lockpicking mini-game. But based on Digital Foundry’s math, you can only kill around 65 zombies with the resources offered in-game. So don’t miss a single shot, don’t sprint (as that wastes stamina), and also hope the game doesn’t randomly crash during all of this, erasing your progress in the process.
Oh and keep in mind that it’s only about 15 minutes long, assuming you manage your limited resources correctly and don’t get stuck trying to open a door that can only be opened with the “E” key. (Note: The Switch doesn’t have an E key.)
The Last Hope is a comically bad video game from developers who have a track record of awful Switch shovelware, stuff like World War: Battle Heroes Field Army Call of Prison Duty Simulator.
And it’s easy to laugh at it, which I did and continue to do. But it’s sadly not an oddity on the Switch’s eShop, which in recent years has become filled with shovelware garbage that, some might say, is getting very close to scam territory. Not that I’m calling The Last Hope—a game that can be completed in 15 minutes and looks to be directly ripping off The Last of Us using poorly cobbled together Unity assets—a scam. Just, you know, some people might be saying that.
I think some folks just assume these shovelware games are bad and don’t think much of it. But I think Nintendo should try to bring back some quality control to its store.
For one, so many indie devs are working really hard on games that end up getting lost in a massive sea of content. Pruning some of the worst, most broken shovelware from the store might help these devs find more success. The Switch platform also has a lot of younger players and they or their parents might not know better and waste some money on something awful, broken, and terrible. Something like The Last Hope.