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'The Last Of Us: Part II' Studio Hiring For Ambitious Multiplayer Project

'The Last Of Us: Part II' Studio Hiring For Ambitious Multiplayer Project

Naughty Dog, the studio behind the Uncharted franchise and the upcoming The Last Of Us: Part II, is currently hiring staff to work on a mysterious new multiplayer project. According to a job listing tweeted by Naughty Dog Lead Designer Vinit Agarwal, the studio is currently on the search for an Online Systems Programmer to join the multiplayer team at Naughty Dog's headquarters in Santa Monica, Los Angeles.

It's unclear what exactly Naughty Dog could be cooking up, but Agarwal teases that the studio has "big ambitions" for whatever it might be. Some have speculated that it could be an online mode for an as-yet unannounced Uncharted 5, but I'm less sure. The far more likely scenario is that the studio is putting some more manpower behind what was originally supposed to be the multiplayer component for The Last Of Us: Part II.

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Cast your mind back to September. You might remember that Naughty Dog confirmed the upcoming sequel would actually be dropping multiplayer in order to focus on delivering a solid and robust single-player experience. Fair enough.

More than that though, the studio also explained that what started life as a small multiplayer add-on got so ambitious in itself that the team decided it would be best to put it to one side and release it as a standalone game somewhere down the line.

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"As development began on the evolution of our Factions mode from The Last of Us: Part I, the vision of the team grew beyond an additional mode that could be included with our enormous single player campaign," Naughty Dog explained at the time. "Wanting to support both visions, we made the difficult choice that The Last of Us: Part II would not include an online mode," Naughty Dog wrote.

Crucially, Naughty Dog also added that we would "eventually experience the fruits of the team's online ambition." I'd put good money on whatever Naughty Dog is currently hiring for being an extension of that online ambition.

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The Last of Us
The Last of Us

Factions mode was very much an unexpected highlight of The Last Of Us, and a wonderful addition to an already excellent game. If Naughty Dog is willing to put more resources into expanding that original idea over a full, standalone game, then I for one am fully on board.

Whatever shape the project ends up taking, I can't imagine we'll learn much more until after The Last Of Us: Part II hits PS4 on May 29th next year.

Featured Image Credit: Naughty Dog

Topics: sony, Naughty Dog, The Last Of Us, PS4

Ewan Moore

Journalist at GAMINGbible who still quite hasn’t gotten out of my mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), I went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis.