The Last of Us – Survivor Mode Detailed

The Last of Us - Survivor

In The Last of Us, there are four difficulty modes that you can take on at the beginning of the game. Those who have been playing shooter games for a while and think they can handle the onslaught of the infected in the game, hard mode will be the best choice. However, those who are seeking for an ultimate challenge, there’s one mode waiting for you – that’s the Survivor mode.

The difference between the Hard and Survivor mode is night and day. The experience is much more solid on Survivor mode but be prepared to die a lot. Those who are seeking for a greater challenge, I would recommend to play Survivor on your second playthrough as it will give you the advantage of knowing where the enemy will spawn or how they will attack you. If you really insist in trying out, god speed.

Here are the things that you should know in Survivor mode:

-Crafting items, ammo, health items and melee weapons will be limited. If you thought the crafting supplies that you get in Hard mode is lacking, it will be more scarce in Survivor mode.
-The items that you see in your first play through might not be in the place you remember them in Survivor mode.
-Enemies are twice as hard to kill and the damage they deal will double than before.
-The amount of parts, supplements and collectibles will remain and be left untouched.
-Joel’s listening ability is disabled
-no button prompt appears when you sneak behind them. You must know the choke, stealth kill button, and the usual square at QTE events.

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29 Comments

  1. Jeff
    June 17, 2013, 11:32 AM

    You can still use listen mode on survivor.

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  2. Mark Fajardo
    June 17, 2013, 12:03 PM

    Hi Jeff,

    I doubled check just to make sure and it will not let me use the listen mode on survivor.

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  3. Jeff
    June 17, 2013, 9:39 PM

    Weird. I’m on survivor and I can use it.

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  4. Nemesis4670
    June 17, 2013, 10:11 PM

    You can’t use listen mode on survivor mode. Even the option to turn it on and off in the settings is gone. So not sure how that’s possible. Maybe you are mistaking it for hard mode

    Btw first playthrough was on normal and it took me 18 hours. I searched every area for items and used alot of stealth but I’m sure if you ran through it could be beaten faster. But most people will play like me so its amazing a game of this kind was that long. Most uncharted games or even small time games are lucky to be 6 hours. So this was amazing. Greatest game of the past few years for SURE.

    I am playing it again on survivor mode and no listen mode makes it much more realistic and frightening!!!

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  5. Jeff
    June 17, 2013, 10:45 PM

    It switched me from survivor to easy -.-

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  6. Jeff
    June 17, 2013, 10:47 PM

    Sorry about any confusion then.

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  7. Bill
    June 20, 2013, 12:19 PM

    You might want to clarify that Survivor mode isn’t available until you beat the game for the first time on normal (maybe easy, but I only beat it on normal).

    Also, you shouldn’t say enemies are “twice as hard to kill” because it’s ambiguous. I can still kill a clicker with one brick in melee for example. Also shooting bandits in the head still kills in one hit and they still take 3 body shots with the revolver.

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  8. ashton
    June 22, 2013, 8:38 PM

    Will beating the game on survival give you the trophies for the other difficulties like in uncharted?

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  9. Diogo
    June 23, 2013, 6:12 AM

    Survivor mode don’t have enemies that are harder to kill. The amount of damage is the same. The big thing in survivor is the lack of itens needed for crafting and amno. In survivor you really need to make every shot count. Most of times you’ll be sneaking and running away from enemies. It’s the real the last of us experience.

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  10. tward09
    June 24, 2013, 1:04 PM

    I was a bit thrown by this information, as there is definitely about half, if not less, of the supplies, supplements, ammo, and parts that there were on hard. Enemies are all around about the same in terms of difficulty, but lack of ammo makes it much harder. So, I’ll complain about this post’s information on details 3 and 4, minus the fact that they deal more damage, because I’m pretty sure that’s true, too.

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  11. Luke Flint
    June 25, 2013, 6:55 AM

    I played threw the first time on normal, tried to get all the collectables and all that, took me 14 hours. Then played threw on survivor, wasn’t as hard as expected, due to how often you get checkpoints (encounters) ,only took me 8 hours.

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  12. Forrest
    June 26, 2013, 8:42 PM

    i played threw on hard took me 16 and a half hours to beat it but then it wounldn’t let me play on survivor mode.. wtf man

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  13. Mark Fajardo
    June 26, 2013, 8:57 PM

    If you are using your New Game+ save file, you will not be able to switch to a much higher difficulty.

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  14. BobotheTalkingMonkay
    June 27, 2013, 9:32 PM

    Hold on, what do you mean by “The amount of parts, supplements and collectibles will remain and be left untouched.”
    Sorry if this is a stupid question

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  15. Mark Fajardo
    June 27, 2013, 9:35 PM

    the items that you get in the game.

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  16. Lambo2655
    July 6, 2013, 4:23 AM

    You can use a GAME PLUS save at the end of your very first time through the game to play on a higher difficulty than the one you completed. Say you did your first time through the game on Normal. After the closing credits continue playing with your GAME PLUS. You will be taken to the intro/ prologue level. Play through that till you get to the start of the next level in Boston. Exit to the main menu and go to CHAPTERS. Choose to play the intro again and this time you can choose your difficulty setting including Survivor mode. It does help a lot if you can start Survivor with all your guns and skills fully upgraded.

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  17. tibi888
    July 8, 2013, 10:35 AM

    playing the game right now in survivor mode after completed on normal.

    there is mutch less ammo for sure, and maybe you need more body shots to kill an enemy.

    we just left the metro station with ellie and jess, (where are about six or seven clickers and two runners) and i come out to the surface with one f***g bullet in the revolver!less ammo makes this mode harder im sure.

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  18. Hirome
    July 18, 2013, 11:46 AM

    Enemies do more damages in melee combats and it is more difficult to get them off when they grab you. I beat the game on survivor mode and wasn’t that hard though… you just got to be smarter and don’t go rambo :)

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  19. Matt
    July 29, 2013, 4:31 PM

    I just beat it on Hard, and then went to select Survivor but I still couldn’t. Any ideas why not?

    I started again on Hard+ (also what will be different this time around?) thinking that I had to beat it on Hard+ to unlock Survivor.

    What am I missing?

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  20. One Sleek Rican
    July 29, 2013, 9:30 PM

    Matt,

    You did the same thing I did. I clicked on “Continue New Game Plus”

    Go to the option under “Factions” And choose NEW GAME

    Good luck

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  21. Ehren
    August 14, 2013, 12:46 AM

    When I first started my Survivor walkthrough, I was greeted with the unpleasant sight of my Crafting Speed, Healing Speed, and Shiv Master skills being reduced. I don’t know if this is what Survivor does, or if it some sort of glitch. Any help with this situation would be welcomed.

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  22. Brian
    August 15, 2013, 1:48 AM

    I played first on normal I wanted to get the dexter backpack skin for Ellie so I played survival mode I die alot more but it’s way way more realistic and in my opinion more fun and a challenge I’m in bills town where you first meet bill and god I can tell you normal mode I already crafted like 10 to 15 things now whereas survival maybe like 2 lol it’s awesome though and Egreb about crafting slower not sure seems the same but idk could be different and You do take a hell of slot more damage then normal lol just saying!!! I’ve got to bills place drunk in like 2 hours maybe it seems so far relatively easy maybe cause I’m experienced now lol

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  23. Anon
    August 24, 2013, 12:26 PM

    Holy hell, look at all this detail! There are so many! How will i ever make it through them all!

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  24. Jules
    September 4, 2013, 5:11 PM

    First Thing to remember is to avoid fights. Use bottles to get clickers to leave an area and then sneak past ( museum and subway) Sneak past guards if possible ( I choked 1 guard and snuck past the rest in the second fight in the capital building ). Just sneak past or run away from bloaters (hotel and university)

    Second is to conserve ammo. Choke out as many hunters or runners as possible. Use bricks as melee weapons. If you hurl a brick or bottle at an enemy it takes only 1 hit with a melee weapon to kill them. That’s useful when you want to conserve your metal pipe/baseball bat. Use bullets on infected, hunters are easier to choke out.

    Third, remember the NPCs have unlimited ammo. They will shoot if you distract the enemy,allowing them to flank. Also use NPCs to distract enemies and hit the enemy with a brick while they attack the NPC.

    Last, be prepared to die a lot.

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  25. faizzo112
    September 22, 2013, 3:38 PM

    What Is The Difference Between Hard And Hard +.

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  26. LJ
    October 26, 2013, 4:43 PM

    My first time playing I went EVERYWHERE and collected all items and just had fun with it on “Hard”. Not sure why anyone plays games on lower settings? The hardest always. This took me 21 hours so not sure about all these times of play unless you played on easy or normal and didn’t get all collectibles? Love this game and now it’s time for survival. ..

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  27. LJ
    October 27, 2013, 12:46 PM

    + is playing with all dlc packs active. I’m buying the dlc for 19.99. Has anyone else? It has to be worth it!

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  28. GoodEyeSniper
    November 22, 2013, 9:57 PM

    I guess it could be me, but I doubt it. I’ve played through a few times and now I’ve began Survivor and I had a hell of a time getting past the Goldstone Building part with the Runners and Clicker. I did everything the same but for some reason anytime I got close (not even close enough for a takedown) they whip around and I have to restart the encounter. From what I read, the harder playthroughs would just be less items. I’ve definitely found that out. I don’t see any increase in the bad guys. But are the baddies more aware on his difficulty? Any input is appreciated. Thanks.

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  29. MMCH
    January 13, 2014, 12:33 PM

    Ah no. + is playing with weapon upgrades and Joel upgrades restored from your last playthrough.

    And if you’re good at stealth, you can make it through survivor pretty easily. Try not to use health kits/molotovs/nail bombs/smoke bombs or ammo/arrows unless you *really* need to. I’ve found this quite helpful. I’m at the end of ch.5 with 2 of everything (excluding ammo/arrows) but ammo really is scarce.

    And the article didn’t mention this, but the Infected hear you better. Not humans–Infected. You have to slow-crouchwalk or every Infected from a mile away will hear you. Good example is in the Sewers with Sam (with all the Stalkers and 2 Clickers). You have to crouch right away or the Infected go to beserk-mode because Stalkers hear better than the other Infected.

    You can normal-crouchwalk through humans (including David).

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