Craig Mazin, one of The Last of Us showrunners alongside Neil Druckmann, has explained why the HBO series feels less violent and has less action sequences than the game. In a PlayStation blog, Mazin explains why they decided to avoid the many fights against the various infection found in the original game.
For realism, violence and action were slowed down.
According to Mazin in a PlayStation blog, the main reason why violence was reduced in the HBO program is because to having a realistic healing strategy.
Because the gameplay mechanics allow for different experiences, video games like The Last of Us can usually get away with multiple combat sequences in a row. However, too much action may be repetitive in the show.
Mazin claims that the action scenes on the show are better because they are "unique, separate, and separate from each other." Having a lot of action sequences would have also shorten the runtime of an episode or cut out other scenes that would be critical in establishing the narrative.
Similarly, the second episode of the series has an Uncharted 4 easter egg from Google.