A new PC mod for The Last of Us Part 1 puts players in control of an HBO alternate universe version of Joel played by Pedro Pascal. HBO’s adaptation of “The Last of Us” has been a hit in terms of ratings and social media discussions. Pascal plays the game’s protagonist, Joel Miller, whose daughter died in his arms early in the fungal outbreak, and who must now escort a girl named Ellie across a post-apocalyptic America.
The recent release of The Last of Us Part 1 on PC has been abysmal. The game’s launch was riddled with various graphical glitches and game-breaking bugs. Naughty Dog has since released a series of updates that address the myriad of issues players have listed since launch. While Naughty Dog is doing what they can to fix what went wrong in The Last of Us Part 1, modders are doing what they can to fix bad situations.
As recent Hollywood trends have shown, the best way to instantly spice up a project is to include Pedro Pascal. That’s exactly what a modder called Speclizer has done with the help of a visual effects company called Alpha Studios. Speclizer is the creator of mods for The Last of Us and God of War series, while Alpha Studios has worked on various film and TV productions. Together the two created a mod that replaced the classic Joel Miller character model with Pedro Pascal.
At times, the effect can feel eerie. In profile, as in the beginning of the video clip, when Joel discovers that Ellie is reading her diary in a cutscene later in the game, this model is a perfect match for Pascal. On the plus side, however, the effect takes on an unsettling mash-up vibe. It’s almost as if elements of the original character model and Pascal were going at the same time. That’s probably because Troy Baker’s voice coming from Pedro Pascal’s mouth feels like a parallel universe paradox, where two versions of the same person somehow exist in the same space. Either way, the character models themselves are still impressive, and it’s one of the few bright spots in the recent PC release of The Last of Us Part 1.
Neither Speclizer nor Alpha Studios have announced which The Last of Us Part 1 PC mods, if any, they will be working on next. It wouldn’t be surprising if they swapped out Ellie’s original character model for Bella Ramsey (who plays Ellie in the HBO series) with one after their excellent Pedro Pascal mod. Or throw Nick Offerman’s face onto Bill’s in-game character model.
The Last of Us Part 1 is out now on PC and PS5.