Guest Post by Matt, INTJ
The Last of Us
Dominant Ti: Joel understands mechanical and logically subjective systems particularly well; his ability to consistently problem-solve in a world without typical constraints like order and social standing ultimately insure his continued survival. He maintains a survivor’s mindset both before and after Sarah’s death, unlike everyone else around him. Ironically enough, his default, unique worldview adapts quickly to the world after the outbreak since it doesn’t really need to do any adapting at all. Joel always finds a way to survive, finding ways to overcome difficulties of both the financial and fungal kind. Another tip-off: Joel rarely ever voices his thought process and doesn’t order his companions around much. He never comes across as domineering or controlling, unlike most extraverted thinkers.
Auxiliary Se: There’s no doubt that Joel constantly lives in the moment. His of awareness of his external environment is quite impressive; hotwiring cars, constructing makeshift weapons, and quickly reacting to external stimulus all seem to come naturally to him. Joel is ultimately a man of never-ending action who enjoys getting his hands dirty. His work as a carpenter prior to the occurrence of the outbreak further emphasizes his talent for understanding logical systems (Ti) and applying that understanding in a very concrete manner (Se).
Tertiary Ni: Though primarily uninterested in symbolism and theoretical analysis, Joel always strives to locate some certain goal or reason to continue living in such a morally shattered world. He even states this outright: “I struggled for a long time with survivin’, and no matter what, you keep finding something to fight for.” Ellie herself becomes the subject of Joel’s tertiary Ni: her existence corresponds with his will to survive. Nowhere is this more evident than in the game’s climax, where Joel unleashes hell upon the Firefly base and ruthlessly murders the group’s leader to keep Ellie’s brain from being experimented upon.
Inferior Fe: Never comfortable with outward displays of emotion, Joel usually shies away from expressing his affinity for Ellie’s company. When discussing the surplus of death surrounding Ellie and himself, Joel always treats the subject with a frighteningly frigid sense of logic. However, his desire to raise Sarah single-handedly while struggling with his own demons and his numerous amount of social/business connections (Bill, Tess, Robert) indicate that he directs his emotional energy towards others, not himself. Joel rarely ever stops to analyze his own feelings, never questioning his morally dubious choices in a morally dubious world.
Note: Many people type Joel as an ISXJ due to his inability to let go of Sarah’s death. His obsession with parts of his past is primarily because of the emotional trauma he’s experienced, not some sort of Si-usage. Another thing to consider: the virtual destruction of the past thanks to the outbreak. Joel’s generation of survivors are naturally more nostalgic since they literally witnissed their world fall to pieces. Preserving the past becomes of utmost importance for him and his contemporaries. Joel discusses the past usually only with Ellie, in order to demonstrate to her how much the world has changed as result of the outbreak.