It has come to attention that a battle royale mode was apparently something developer Naughty Dog was interested in for The Last of Us Part 2 multiplayer.
According to YouTuber Speclizer on the weekend, there are several multiplayer assets in The Last of Us Part 2 which were discarded by Naughty Dog during development. Those multiplayer assets were recently unearthed through data-mining and spawned to confirm that are related to a potential battle royale mode.
For starters, a discovered map prop indicates The Last of Us Part 2 multiplayer to feature a large map which would make sense for a battle royale mode based on scale. The data-mined multiplayer assets also contain a compass and a player count, both of which are commonly used in battle royale modes. That and an emote wheel similar to the one in Fortnite and Apex Legends.
Furthermore; backpacks, armor, and helmets with three levels of tiers each were found hiding deep within the game. Other discovered assets from The Last of Us Part 2 multiplayer include a collar for perhaps pet companions or for them to be used as weapons against other players in a skirmish.
The findings are certainly breadcrumbs leading towards a battle royale mode but it remains to be seen if Naughty Dog is still working on that or not. It most often happens that developers change direction during development. The Last of Us Part 2 multiplayer may have been receiving a battle royale mode at one point but which may (or may not) have been scrapped since then.
The Last of Us Part 2 has been out for more than a couple of years. The acclaimed sequel was confirmed to receive a standalone multiplayer mode somewhere down the road but which remains hidden in the dark to date. Naughty Dog has not provided any updates on the multiplayer for a while now. The only thing known is that the multiplayer remains in active development, and something to safely presume is a factions multiplayer mode like the one from the first game.