Naughty Dog Lays Off Dozens of Contract Developers: The Last of Us Multiplayer Game Is Now “Basically on Ice”

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Image: Naughty Dog

The Last of Us franchise has been such a huge success story for Naughty Dog that everyone’s job there must be totally secure, right? Not quite, as sources with Kotaku have learned that the developer behind the post-apocalyptic series, as well as Uncharted, has begun getting rid of some of its contract developers as part of a downsizing. While full-time staff is reportedly unaffected, at least 25 people, including QA testers and those in art and production, are being laid off, and none of them will be receiving severance, it’s claimed. Naughty Dog’s new multiplayer game, which is set in The Last of Us universe, is also said to be “basically on ice at this point.”

…impacted developers as well as remaining employees are being pressured to keep the news quiet. Their contracts won’t be officially terminated until the end of October and they’ll be expected to work through the rest of the month. Sony did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

…a multiplayer spin-off for the zombie shooter based on the first game’s Factions mode has struggled in development. Bloomberg reported in June that Sony had diverted resources away from the project following a negative internal review by Bungie, the recently acquired live-service powerhouse behind Destiny 2. One source now tells Kotaku that the multiplayer game, while not completely canceled, is basically on ice at this point.

Image: Naughty Dog

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Tsing Mui
News poster at The FPS Review.

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