Amid rumors of potential cancellation, The Last of Us’ chief multiplayer monetization designer Anders Howard has allegedly left the project. He was formerly a long-time employee of Epic Games and had been with Naughty Dogs for 11 months. However, neither Sony Interactive Entertainment nor Naughty Dog has confirmed nor denied the allegation.
X (formerly Twitter) user Naughty Dog Info (@NaughtyDogInfo) made the statement about Howard’s alleged departure from the platform. The post also highlighted his credentials as the core designer of Fortnite’s progression and battle pass systems.
Meanwhile, Naughty Dog recently made headlines when words about the rounds of layoffs were taking place in the company. The sacking of which is said to have adversely impacted the development of the developing TLOU multiplayer feature, effectively putting it “on ice”.
Kotaku specifically reported that 25 out of the 400 developers within the studio were laid off. While the studio itself remained shut on the topic, Naughty Dog employees have been taking the issue to LinkedIn about their unemployment.
X user Timur222 (@bogorad222) shared snapshots of LinkedIn posts of a few of said Naughty Dog employees, corroborating the report. The affected workers will remain with the game company until the end of October.
Reports suggest that it was contract jobs or part-time roles within the quality assurance department that were sacked.