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The Industry Reacts to Naughty Dog's Tough Decision to Cancel The Last of Us Online

Late yesterday evening, Naughty Dog released a blog post sharing an update on its multiplayer game set in The Last of Us universe. Unfortunately for those who were looking forward to the game, it will never see the light of day as Naughty Dog announced it had made the "incredibly difficult decision"
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on what it called The Last of Us Online.


Following the announcement, many in the community took to X/Twitter to react to Naughty Dog's decision. Some expressed disappointment that the game was canceled. Some were specifically again frustrated that Naughty Dog had removed the multiplayer component in the re-release of The Last of Us Part I. Others were upset at the missed potential of a multiplayer game set in The Last of Us universe.

"Dad remember when Naughty Dog showed The Last of Us Online at The Summer Game Fest 2022?"
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— DomTheBomb (@DomTheBombYT)
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It's frustrating with Naughty Dog as all rereleases strip multiplayer out. Last of Us Part 1 I can maybe get but Uncharted 4 is flat out not the full game on PS5

Right move not to be a live service studio but I miss the days of shipping multiplayer without commitment

— Jon Cartwright (@JonComms)
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What The Last of Us Online could have been... So much potential for an extremely detailed online survival game developed by incredibly talented game designers

On the bright side, Naughty Dog will continue to develop their next narrative focused game. TLOU 3?
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— 𝗩𝗢𝗬𝗔𝗚𝗘𝗥𝗦 𝗥𝗘𝗩𝗘𝗡𝗚𝗘 (@VoyagersRevenge)
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Others empathized with Naughty Dog's decision, with some hoping that canceling the live service game would prevent the studio from facing
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. Some took an additional step to express the bittersweetness of Naughty Dog sticking to single-player games, or to express their disdain for live-service games in general.

The Last of Us multiplayer was
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developed by numerous PlayStation studios. Other games on that list include
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, the PvP shooter from Bungie, which you may recall also
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that were apparently
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of its other live service game,
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.

This is a brave and important call for both the studio and the industry and I deeply respect it. Of course, I do hope this doesn't tie into layoffs, and so sorry to the teams whose hard work has been cancelled.
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— Rami Ismail / رامي (@tha_rami)
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While this is awesome, it feels like heavy spin to me. It's pretty hard to swallow that Naughty Dog didn't understand the demands of live service until just now.
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— Lawrence Sonntag (@SirLarr)
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Obviously bummed, but I’m glad Naughty Dog won’t become a live service studio and will continue to make top tier single player games. At least we still have Factions!
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— Michael Huber (@MichaelPHuber)
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The loss of time here is heartbreaking. Talented developers like Naughty Dog and Rocksteady lost YEARS of progress being trapped in development hell on live service projects that nobody wants to make or play. Just let em make the stuff they're good at, god damn it
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— Kane Brough (@KanesTheName)
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I think this is the right move, we didn't need yet another Live-Service game taking up all of Naughty Dog's time and resources to cash-in on a waning fad. No thank you. Ultimately the right decision! 👍
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— Joe Vargas (@AngryJoeShow)
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Just gonna… bump this back up here because this is the smartest thing Naughty Dog could have done to prevent further layoffs:
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— Liana Ruppert (@DirtyEffinHippy)
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At least one developer, Adrian Campos, who worked on The Last of Us multiplayer game, has publicly expressed solidarity with the studio.

Am I allowed to talk about if I worked on the tlou mp thing now that it’s dead?
Because if I could i learned a fuckton on that project and my heart goes out to everyone else who worked on it
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— Adrian Campos (@MLPcampos)
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And Naughty Dog game director Vinit Agarwal quoted the post to thank Campos for his contributions to the project.

We didn’t talk much directly to eachother, but your work was beautiful. Thank you.
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— Vinit Agarwal (@vinixkun)
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In addition to Naughty Dog canceling The Last of Us multiplayer game, the studio also revealed it's working on "
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".

With that revelation, some fans of Naughty Dog, particularly of the Jak & Daxter series, expressed a desire for the studio to revisit the franchise and make a new entry. Naughty Dog was the original creator of Jak & Daxter;
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, which was followed by
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and
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all of which were released on the PS2.

Some said that Naughty Dog should develop a new game based on the Sly Cooper IP. The
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was created by Sucker Punch Productions, which developed a trilogy of games on the PS2. The most recent game,
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, was developed by Sanzaru Games in 2013.

Naughty Dog can right their wrongs by developing a new Jak & Daxter. 🙏

— jake (Deathloop)👻 (@JakeAGame)
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I hope to god it's new IP or Sly cooper and not another TLOU/Uncharted sequel
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— Ray Ξ  (@Meat0nFossil)
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Please let this happen! Or give them the Sly cooper IP 🙏
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— ValyriaN (@ValyrianFPS)
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Taylor is a Reporter at IGN. You can follow her on Twitter
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