It was only a matter of days ago that we reported to you the news that had emerged from a PlayStation job listing that suggested that a new PlayStation studio was being formed to work with PlayStation’s crown jewel studio, Naughty Dog, alongside the long-time support studio, Visual Arts Service Group, on a new Naughty Dog IP. Now while that news still seems to be valid, at this point in time, we now have some conflicting information pertaining to the nature of the game being made. Perhaps it’s not a new IP afterall.
A new job listing has emerged, separate to the one we discussed the other day that suggests that there’s work going on at Naughty Dog, as well as these other attached studios (including a new one in San Diego), on an established and “beloved franchise”. Could there be an error in one of the job listings? Or are both listings outlining a truth? Could Naughty Dog be working on new and old IP simultaneously, and if so, what could the existing IP be?
The job listing, for a Game Design Intern states,
We are a new PlayStation studio based in San Diego, CA. Our team seeks to impact SIE positively by inspiring the thoughts and emotions of players worldwide through an amazing gaming experience. Currently we are co-developing an exciting new project with Naughty Dog in a beloved franchise.
– Assist with design oriented tasks on an exciting Sony IP-based project
– Be an advocate for the providing the best possible experience for the player
– Help manifest a collaborative vision
– Strive to gain refined design sensibility by participating in feedback-driven iterative loops
Unlike the last job listing, nothing is spoken in this new job of the Visual Arts Service Group, however, with both this new studio and the VASG being based in San Diego, it’s not unreasonable to assume that the two studios will be collaborating on this existing Naughty Dog IP project as well.
So, what could the IP be? Well Naughty Dog only has three options. Crash Bandicoot is their earliest SIE work, and the rights to that franchise were sold off decades ago, ultimately landing at Activision Blizzard King, who will themselves, likely have a new home within the coming year – the franchise soon to become an Xbox owned IP. Beyond the bandicoot, there are three other viable options. The Last Of Us is the studio’s newest franchise and arguably its most acclaimed, it is very much an active IP, with the most recent entry being 2022’s The Last Of Us Part I remake, while a multiplayer title is also in development. Uncharted has been sighted a few times in 2022 with the PS5 remastered collection of PS4 entries Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, and Uncharted: The Lost Legacy both being bundled into the Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves Collection, which then has just recently arrived on PC as well. The last new Uncharted entry was The Lost Legacy itself in 2017. Finally, there is Jak & Daxter which hasn’t displayed a sign of life since the collection of the Naughty Dog developed games was ported to PS3 and PS Vita in 2012. Prior to that the newest entry in the franchise was Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier, in 2009 by High Impact Games. Each of the three IP present different opportunities but with work on The Last Of Us‘ multiplayer already confirmed to be in development, and Jak sadly not being the lowest profiled franchise of all of their works, it seems likely to be the Uncharted IP that will be getting the love – this also fits in with rumours that have swirled about the super-developer returning to the franchise.