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Naughty Dog Thought The Last of Us Would Fail

by William Schwartz

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The Last of Us is often spoken of with positivity and adoring praise; the story of Joel and Ellie was a hit with the critics (we loved it, too) and has sold incredibly well to boot.

It might surprise you then to hear that developer Naughty Dog weren’t particularly confident that their post-apocalyptic adventure would be received quite as well as it has been.

“We thought we were ruining Naughty Dog’s image.”

“We thought it was going to tank.,” states the game’s director, Bruce Straley. “We thought we were going to ruin the name and image [of Naughty Dog] that’s been so heartily built for years with blood, sweat, and tears. We thought we were ruining Naughty Dog’s image.”

Neil Druckmann, writer and creative director of The Last of Us, adds “The joke we would say throughout production was that ‘this game is the downfall of Naughty Dog.’”

The news comes from the brand new PlayStation-centric web series, Conversations with Creators. Released every Tuesday on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PS Vita and YouTube, Conversations with Creators see’s Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next Generation) chat with some of gaming’s most popular and well-respected developers.

The series’ premiere focused on Bungie and their latest sci-fi adventure, Destiny, with episode two featuring Naughty Dog, and a particular focus on The Last of Us and the upcoming Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. The next episode in the series, due to debut tomorrow, focuses on Treyarch, as they talks us through their upcoming title, Call of Duty: Black Ops III.

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