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Naughty Dog loses two more key staff

1 min read


And they’re off to Infinity Ward of all places. Some people are worried that Naughty Dog is haemorrhaging talent. It all started when Uncharted’s creator, Amy Hennig seemingly acrimoniously left the company, followed by a spate of other key staff, including Uncharted 4’s director Nate Wells.  And now two more leads have jumped ship.

Jacob Minkoff, who served as lead designer on on both Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception and The Last of Us, has confirmed that he’s joined Infinity Ward as its new design director. He’s responsible for, amongst many other things, designing what is easily the most stand-out level in the entire Uncharted series of games, Uncharted 2’s train level.

Joining him as a defector is Taylor Kurosakr, who previously served as narrative design lead at Naughty Dog. He has also confirmed that he’s moved to Infinity Ward, where he joins as narrative lead at the Call of Duty studio.

Since March 2014, Naughty Dog has lost Uncharted writer Amy Hennig, Uncharted 4 director Justin Richmond, lead artist Nate Wells, and The Last of Us lead character artist Michael Knowland. That’s a lot of high profile staff leaving in a short time, but Naughty Dog insists it’s all standard industry practise and that development of Uncharted 4 is going swimmingly.

It is also now within the realms of possibility that Infinity Ward’s next Call of Duty won’t have a terrible, terrible single player campaign.

Last Updated: August 4, 2014


  1. Alien Emperor Trevor

    August 4, 2014 at 13:34

    Let’s hope that’s the last of them ;P


  2. Jonah Cash

    August 4, 2014 at 13:46

    As long as they just don’t screw up Uncharted 4 I don’t care how many people leave!!
    It does go both ways though, bad that so many big names are leaving, good that new blood is coming through and taking their place!! No business should stick to the same model for too many years, times change and we need to change with it!! That is the real circle of life…

    PS. I hope the song is now stuck in all your heads!!


  3. Mossel

    August 4, 2014 at 13:51

    His surname is Kurosaki?! Is he also a shinigami?!


  4. Jim Lenoir (Banana Jim)

    August 4, 2014 at 15:22

    Infinity Ward? That’s like leaving Lloyd’s to go work for Sanlam. That or they offered him a meaty package. If only he knew, Activision just wants Call of Dooty, and he’ll be involved with CODFishHeads till his eyes bleed, and his brain leak out of his bottoms.


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