The Last of Us Part II expands on The Last of Us’ formula in numerous vital ways. Chief among them is how players upgrade their Ellie. In the original game, players enhanced Joel by spending a collectible currency on various skills and collecting training manuals to improve crafts. The Last of Us Part II streamlines that process by combining both into one mechanic.
In The Last of Us Part II, players collect Training Manuals (which look like magazines or textbooks) throughout the game that unlock new skill trees. Within these trees lie upgrades that enable unique abilities and crafting enhancements. To find all of them, you’ll need to take a few detours off the beaten trail.
SPOILER ALERT! Though there are no plot-specific details in the guide, it does reveal several locations not previously shown by Sony Interactive Entertainment.
Ellie’s default skill tree is unlocked at the very start of the game. It includes upgrades for health and Listen Mode.
Ellie’s first training manual can be found inside the Courthouse after dispatching the Infected and going to the first floor. Instead of progressing the story by going down the elevator shaft, look to the right. Next door is the Bailiff’s Office.
You won’t be able to go through the door. So, smash the window and hop on into the office. The Crafting Training Manual is sitting on the bookshelf right in front of you. This skill tree increases Ellie’s crafting efficiency.
After escaping the WLF school, Ellie and Dina are placed in a rather large, linear area to explore with plenty of shops and buildings. Eventually, you’ll run into some WLF soldiers at a gas station you can either take out or sneak around. After that, you’ll find the ‘Books’ bookstore. Head inside. There are Infected, but not in the section where you’ll find the manual.
Once inside, head straight for the connected Coffee House entry. In the back right is a table with the manual right on top, unlocking the Stealth tree. This tree allows Ellie to craft silencers, sneak around quicker and stealth kill enemies faster.
The Precision training manual can be found within Hillcrest during Day 2 in a children’s book store. Unfortunately, there’s no way to get into the store without doing some exploration at the liquor store next door, a quality stop after visiting a children’s bookstore.
After exiting the bike shop, head straight for the brown brick liquor store right in front of you, inside you’ll find some supplies, but you’re really here to jump into the basement. Head to the back of the store and dropdown. There are two Shamblers. Either sneak past them or take them out. Either way, on the opposite side of the basement is a staircase leading up to the bookstore.
Enter it, and you’ll see the manual lying on the ground next to a fungal friend. The Precision skill tree includes abilities for smoother and more accurate aiming.
The Explosives training manual is found at the beginning of the second half of Day 2 as Ellie seeks out the hospital. Moving past the brewery, check for a condo on Ellie’s left. It’s a dilapidated grey building with a distinguishable red ‘For Lease’ sign. Trying to open the front door reveals that they are locked. If you look to your right, you’ll see an opening into the basement.
Once inside, there isn’t much to explore. Follow the stairs to the second story and into the condo on Ellie’s right. The Explosives training manual is sitting on the bed in the master bedroom. Just be wary when using the Upgrade Bench in the condo’s kitchen.
SPOILER ALERT! The Last of Us Part II features an additional five skill trees. These are unlocked in the second half of the game, though. We strongly suggest NOT scrolling any further until the completion of Day 3. The guide resumes below the following image.
Players take control of the character Abby following the completion of Day 3. Like Ellie, Abby has a total of five skill trees with four of them requiring Training Manuals to unlock. However, unlike Ellie’s collection of manuals, Abby’s chapters are more linear, making it easier to find them. Though it is still more than possible to miss them if you’re not careful.
Abby’s default skill tree is unlocked once she becomes playable. It includes upgrades for health and Listen Mode.
You can acquire Abby’s first training manual early on when you and Mel get trapped in the boat garage. After solving a light puzzle, Abby will be able to board the white boat.
Go inside the boat to find the training manual sitting to your right. Covert Ops enhances Abby’s stealth capabilities as well as granting the ability to craft shivs.
After regaining your supplies from the Scars, you’ll find yourself in a car garage. Go towards the back right where you’ll enter a room with vending machines right in front.
Once you go in, look to your right to see a kitchen and another doorway. Go straight through the door, and you’ll find the Firearms training manual sitting on a table. This skill tree allows Abby to create different types of ammo for her shotgun and hunting pistol.
Nearly impossible to miss, the Close Quarters training manual is found after exiting the Infected infested hotel. It’s located in the linear hallway as you head towards the hospital under a group of sofas.
The Close Quarters skill tree enhances Abby’s melee capabilities.
Found early after arriving on the Seraphite’s island, players will come across a ladder they’ll need to climb. At the top, look to your left to see a truck with its back doors swung wide open.
Enter it, and you’ll see the Ordnance training manual lying on the floor. This skill tree enhances Abby’s crafting abilities.
The Last of Us Part II launches June 19 exclusively on PS4.