Naughty Dog announced they are making a board game adaptation of The Last of Us. It is through a partnership with Themeborne and their Escape the Dark series. The Last of Us: Escape the Dark is a cooperative board game for one to five players. It is in The Last of Us universe, specifically the Last of Us part 1 timeline.

Image Courtesy of Naughty Dog


Players will take control of one of six iconic characters within that universe:

  1. Tommy
  2. Marlene
  3. Bill
  4. Tess
  5. Joel
  6. Ellie

The goal is to work together to solve a predicament while exploring the open world map. The Escape the Dark series is usually known for using illustrated chapter cards. These serve as a plot device and a way to determine the players’ goals.

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According to Naughty Dog, they will adopt locations iconic to the original game, such as the Sewers, University, and Suburbs. There will also be humans and infected foes similar the video games. These are all depicted through numerous illustrations.

A Survival Effort

Based on early pictures revealed by Naughty Dog, the board game will have a similar system to its video game counterpart. Players will pick up materials, weapons, and upgrades throughout each session. It also looks like crafting will be integral to success. Apart from that, we’ll likely expect different varieties of enemies and other encounters that add challenges to the game. Enemies that could show up include:

  • Hunters (with different weapons)
  • Humvee
  • Stalkers
  • Runners
  • Clickers
  • Bloaters

The picture they showed off is in black and white. It may be the intended art style, but they could also change it later. Naughty Dog will also be detailing a collector’s edition of the board game for those who want more.

Launching on Kickstarter

Naughty Dog will seek funding for their board game through the Kickstarter platform. The campaign will launch on November 8 and provide more details. Board games are one of the more successful products to go through the crowdfunding platform, making it an ideal step for them. People can likely order a standard and collector’s edition there.

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There will also be contribution tiers for orders. When looking at other campaigns on the platform, we see an option to order a standard set and a collector’s set. There may also be stretch goals, which means the company can add more content to the game if there’s enough funding. Fans can expect more characters, weapons, locations, and enemies. They may even do it through optional expansions.

We’ll likely see more pricing information and other details about the board game when it launches on November 8.

Some Considerations

Kickstarter games often take their time to develop, with some reaching years before the final product. Developers usually promise a production time of around 1 to 2 years, but delays can happen. When you buy the game, they’ll provide updates on its progress. The good thing about this release is that it has the reputation of Naughty Dog and Themeborne backing it up.

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