The Last Of Us multiplayer loses staff after Bungie reassessment

Bungie was apparently unimpressed with The Last Of Us’ multiplayer game, prompting Sony to downsize the team as it re-evaluates it.

Aside from Spider-Man 2, the one game we and many others were confident in seeing at last week’s PlayStation showcase was Naughty Dog’s The Last Of Us multiplayer spin-off.

While Sony had plenty of online multiplayer games to show, The Last Of Us was shockingly absent despite Naughty Dog’s promises to share real details for it this year.

The studio has since admitted that the game needs more time in the oven, suggesting it’s been internally delayed, while an insider report adds that Sony’s re-evaluating the project after letting Destiny studio Bungie take a look at it.

As a reminder, Sony bought Bungie mainly for its experience with live service games, a market Sony is very eager to tap into with multiple projects. Although it’s not officially confirmed as such, it’s safe to assume that The Last Of Us’ multiplayer title will be one of those live service games. Or at least that was the plan.

So, it makes sense for Sony to ask Bungie for feedback on the project and Bungie must’ve had some issues with it, apparently questioning the game’s ability to keep players engaged for long periods of time.

This is according to four anonymous individuals familiar with the game’s development, who told Bloomberg that Sony has pulled a lot of staff members off the project and moved them onto other things.

The game isn’t cancelled, but only a small group is left working on it as Sony reassesses the whole thing. Whether this means the game will ditch the live service elements or not is anyone’s guess.

This report dropped after Naughty Dog effectively addressed the game’s absence at the PlayStation showcase, saying on Twitter, ‘We’re incredibly proud of the job our studio has done thus far, but as development has continued, we’ve realised what is best for the game is to give it more time.

‘Our team will continue to work on the project, as well as our other games in development, including a brand new single-player experience; we look forward to sharing more soon.’

However, as the single-player portion grew in scope, Naughty Dog decided to cut out the multiplayer and turn it into a separate project.

In all that time, though, all the studio has shared about it is a couple of concept art pieces. Gameplay videos did leak back in 2020, but it’s very likely that they’re no longer indicative of what the game will look like when it eventually comes out.

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