The Last of Us Part II‘s stuntwoman Amy Johnston has offered a glimpse into video game development from her perspective, revealing just how much work goes into character movements and action sequences.
In an interview with Kotaku, Johnston – who was previously behind Uncharted‘s Nadine Ross – revealed that there were days where all she did was throw objects from various positions and she spent several days just pretending to die!
“There were a couple days when all I did was throw, because Ellie was throwing molotovs and bricks,” said Johnston. “I probably threw about 800 times that day, with just my right hand. From ‘crouch,’ to ‘jumping forward,’ to ‘going backwards’ – all from different angles.” She also pretended to die for several days in multiple positions and from various actions, such as jumping and missing a ledge.
Johnston further revealed that some days were dedicated to her simply walking around because it’s important for character movements to feel right when players use the controller. “You want them to feel human – not too fast and not too slow,” she explained. “So first, we worked on getting that right.” How a character walks also depends on a magnitude of in-game actions.
“The walk cycle is different from Seattle Day 1 to Seattle Day 3,” Johnston continued. “This is the first game I’ve ever worked on that was so specific with emotion and injury. When Abby had an injury, we had a new walk cycle, and the same with Ellie.”
The full interview is an interesting read and offers an in-depth look at stunt work for video games so make sure to check it out.