Ever wondered what The Last of Us would be like if Joel died instead of Tess? One YouTuber has the answer.
On May 10, YouTuber Freako released a video showing off using different NPCs as Joel replacements. While some of them, like Marlene, he couldn't get to work properly, others, like Tommy and Tess, worked perfectly. Tess's hair physics works, as well as her grunts, and she looks pretty natural with Joel's animations. He mentions in the video that Tess even works in the story, although he's just loading NPCs into the test level for now.
But you can't just mention that Tess works in-game without actually showing it. She's a beloved character for The Last of Us fans. I certainly wish she hadn't been killed off so early. Well, lucky for us, Freako made a mod where Tess takes Joel's place as protagonist and Ellie's surrogate parent:
It's a very polished offering — Freako says in the comments that he made at least one new texture for the video. While the mod isn't available for download, I really wish it was. It would be impossible to replace Joel's voice lines, sure, but there's something really compelling about seeing Tess go on his emotional journey. I like this rough around the edges survival mum, and I'd like a chance to play as her.