The Last of Us: Part II is finally nearly upon us, and as new details emerge we're getting a better idea of how the long-awaited sequel will play. One new thing we've learned, thanks to the new Inside the Gameplay video below, is that you won't be able to fully upgrade Ellie in a single playthrough.
Kurt Margenau, the game's co-director, explains in the video (at around the 7:30 mark onwards) that The Last of Us: Part II will feature seperate weapon and player upgrade systems, but that you won't be able to acquire the necessary resources to fully upgrade Ellie in a single playthrough. This is because the game is focused on the consequences of your choices, and that includes which skills you decide to focus on.
Naughty Dog wants players to make choices and then be forced to live with them, and to that end even the upgrade system choiced needed to have "a really noticable and tangible impact" on how you play. So if you decide to bulk up one of Ellie's abilities, it might mean you can never fully develop another, for instance.
This means that players will experience different "builds" of Ellie, and it sounds like the intention is for this to have an impact on how you experience the game's story. While you could not fully upgrade Joel in the original game until you hit New Game Plus, it did not fundamentally alter the game's narrative, or your sense of the character, in any way. Speaking of which, the video also warns that you'll likely miss entire story moments in your first playthrough.
The Last of Us: Part II releases for PlayStation 4 on June 19. If you don't have a system to play it on, check out the limited edition The Last of Us: Part II PlayStation 4 Pro model.