For the similarly-named object, see Lockbox.
A Loot Box, also known as an Item Stash, is a gameplay mechanic in The Last of Us. It resembles a red tool box holding supplies for players to use. When opened, a specially determined amount of supplies is spawned around the loot box for the player who opened it. Available Loot boxes are marked by a white circle on their mini map; there are four loot boxes on every multiplayer map.
The main function of a loot box to give out supplies to players in multiplayer maps. They mainly contain Crafting supplies to make useful items. How many items a loot box holds is inversely proportional to how well the player and his/her team is doing. A team and a player that is dominating the game may sometimes get as few as one crafting item per lockbox. On the other hand, heavily losing teams receive plenty of crafting materials, Nail Bombs, Molotov Cocktails, parts, and sometimes even purchasable weapon ammo. After being opened and looted, loot boxes then respawn with more loot after around 3 minutes. Loot boxes spawn independently for each player; one player utilizing a loot box does not prevent other players on either team from using the same loot box.
In Sudden Death and especially Last Man Standing, loot boxes drop significantly better loot. Upon becoming the last survivor, the next loot box a player opens always contains very generous supplies, in the form of purchasable weapon ammo, ready-made Molotovs and nail bombs, parts, and machetes--even if the player hadn't equipped it in their loadout. However, this box does not restock its loot for the rest of the match. Further boxes opened after this function as standard loot boxes, giving out more meager supplies and restocking as normal.
The games modes change how many loot boxes appear. In Supply Raid and Interrogation, the loot boxes are usually out in the open and are often dangerous to approach without teammates. In Survivor, there are more loot boxes and they are usually behind cover.
Here is a list of items a loot may give out:
- Ammunition for non-purchasable weapons (only for players low or empty on ammo)
- Ammunition for purchasable weapons (only spawns non-purchasable weapon ammo for players losing heavily)
- Crafting Supplies
- Parts x100 (only for losing teams)
- Molotov Cocktail (only for losing teams)
- Nail Bomb (only for losing teams)
- Smoke Bomb (only for losing teams)
- Health Kit (only for losing teams and for players below half health)
- Machete (only for heavily losing teams)
- Food (only for damaged players)
Ammunition for purchasable items only spawn when the player is using a class that is equipped with said purchasable weapon. The machete is an exception, for it can spawn for any class.
- Purchasable weapons do not have an ammunition box graphic. The weapon itself appears, assuming the player has already bought their weapon.