20 Years Later Edit
We return to find Joel twenty years later, where much of civilization has been destroyed by the infection. In the United States, civilians are residents of heavily-policed quarantine zones set up by FEDRA Those living outside the zones are oftentimes desperate survivors who live alone, in small groups, or in independent settlements. Many of these survivors are hostile. Joel now lives in the Boston quarantine zone and makes his living as a smuggler, getting people, items, and weapons through the zone's walls, and appears to have built a ruthless and fearsome reputation for himself. He is woken up by Tess, his friend and business partner, who informs him that she was attacked by Robert's men, a local weapons dealer who is in debt with them. They decide to confront him in his warehouse. While walking to the checkpoint that they need to pass in order to reach their destination, Tess comments that the ration line hasn't opened yet, but people are already lining up due to shortages. The duo is also present as four civilians are dragged out of a nearby condemned building by soldiers in HAZMAT suits, who scan them to see if they are infected. The first two are found to be clean, but the third tests positive. Despite pleading that she isn't, she is lethally injected by a soldier, killing her. The fourth civilian attempts to escape, only to be shot dead.
Afterwards, the duo arrives at the checkpoint. As they are about to go through, a terrorist attack by a rebel group known as the Fireflies destroys a military vehicle. This causes the Army to close the checkpoint and order everyone in the area to get off the streets. This forces Joel and Tess to take a detour through a series of tunnels and the outside of the area.
Beyond the Wall Edit
Joel and Tess go through a series of abandoned buildings and houses. In one of the houses, they are forced to put on their gas masks to avoid the infectious spores released by a dead infected. There, they also find a small group of people desperate to break into the zone. As Joel learns from an artifact in the area, they weren't there long before the spores infected most of them. They are all killed by the infected, except for one man who is still alive and trapped under a pile of rubble, with a tear in his mask. He begs Joel to kill him so he will not turn. Joel then has the option of shooting him or not. Eventually they find the entrance to the slums where Robert is hiding.
The Slums Edit
Upon arriving, as Joel predicts, Robert is afraid and expecting them. The two bribe their way in to the Slums, walking past several black market stalls. A man offers Tess a bargain but she brushes him off. Another says hello to Tess, causing suspicion from his girlfriend. As Joel crosses past a fistfight, several spectators betting their ration cards, a guard tries to stop him. Just as Joel is about to fight him, Tess catches up, telling the man to sit down, to which he complies; having recognised Tess. The pair learn from another guard that Robert has returned to the wharf. They pursue him, killing his men that try to stop Tess and Joel from reaching him. They progress through a series of warehouses with many men patrolling the area, eventually reaching Robert.
The Cargo Edit
After a short pursuit, Robert is caught and reveals to Joel and Tess that he gave the guns he owed them to the Fireflies, to whom he was also in debt. He offers to go after them and get the weapons back, but Tess shoots him dead. As they decide what to do next, Marlene, the leader of the Fireflies appears, nursing a gunshot wound from an earlier skirmish with the military. She offers to give them the guns back and more, but only if they smuggle something to Boston's Capitol Building. After passing by more military patrols, she introduces them to a teenage girl named Ellie, the "cargo". Joel hesitates at first, but agrees to the job after Marlene shows Tess the guns, and they leave later that night.
"The Quarantine Zone" contain the following eight artifacts:
|Boston Q.Z. Map||20 Years Later||Once you pick up Joel's backpack for the first time, the artifact will already be placed inside.|
|Military Pamphlet||20 Years Later||Once you pick up Joel's backpack for the first time, the artifact will already be placed inside.|
|Note to Brother||Beyond the Wall||After the first encounter with the Infected and up the staircase, before dropping down into the open air across the plank-bridge, go through the large hole in a wall to the left, and straight across the room will be a door. Go through the door and in the upper far left corner will be a table with the artifact on it.|
|Drafting Notice||The Slums||In the slums, Joel is confronted by a man named Malick while passing through a bus, in which Tess orders him to sit down. Upon leaving the bus, walk straight until you come in between a gray table with yellow jugs underneath it on your left and the edge of a canopy on your right. The artifact can be found on the ground in front of the gray table.|
|Wanted Poster||The Slums||In the slums, Joel is confronted by a man named Malick while passing through a bus, in which Tess orders him to sit down. Upon leaving the bus, walk straight until you come up behind a man and a woman leaning against a fence discussing how another man hordes stuff in a nearby warehouse. The poster is to the left of them on an olive-green container, which has another red container on top of it.|
|Warehouse Key||The Slums||After Joel and Tess drop through a hole in a fence to advance to the docks, two of Robert's men appear. This is the activation scene teaching the player how to stealth kill human enemies. After killing the two men, there are two more guys inside the nearby building. Killing one of the guys will drop the key. This is required to advance through the chapter.|
|Shipping Manifest||The Slums||After Joel and Tess make their way through a metal garage door to the docks, they spot Robert speaking with one of his men. Joel and Tess then continue to hop over a brick railing down to the ground, where many of Robert's men patrol. Upon dropping down, all the way to the right is a metal railing between the water with a blue dumpster against it -- the artifact is on the ground behind it.|
|Docks Note||The Slums||After Joel and Tess make their way through a metal garage door to the docks, they spot Robert speaking with one of his men. Joel and Tess then continue to hop over a brick railing down to the ground, where many of Robert's men patrol a large warehouse. Inside the warehouse, all the way to the right against a railing with a large, rusty ship on the other side of it, is a blue dumpster leaning against it. The note can be found behind it.|
"The Quarantine Zone" contain the following three Firefly Pendants:
- David Michael Vigil, 000102, is on a table in the room with the writing and the Fireflies symbol on the walls, to the right after climbing the ladder with Tess.
- Ben Glueck, 000106, is suspended from a tree to the left of the area where Joel warns Tess to watch out for soldiers after jumping over the barricade. It needs to be shot in order to get it down.
- Philip Liu, 000105, is on the floor by the dead Firefly furthest of the 3 from the start point after being joined by Ellie.
- This chapter marks the start of the main storyline.
- During the start of "The Quarantine Zone", if the player walks directly up to one of the street guards, they will push Joel away and warn him not to do it again. If the player does not heed this warning and tries to get up in the personal space of the same soldier a second time, then Joel will be pushed to the floor and the guard will shoot him in the head.
- This is the only point in the game where a female character can kill Joel as some of the soldiers guarding the street are women.
- In the slums, there is a young girl holding a giraffe toy. The giraffe is a recurring theme seen throughout the game.
- The ending cutscene foreshadows Joel's assault on the Firefly's base in Salt Lake City. Robert fatalistically declares they should fight the Fireflies, which Joel eventually does to save Ellie's life.
- Upon entering the bus in the slums and encountering Malick, there is a glitch present where Malik goes from standing up to sitting down.