Two more important cogs in the machine at The Last Of Us developer Naughty Dog have exited the studio, with two leads making the move to Call of Duty studio Infinity Ward this week.
Naughty Dog is losing lead game designer Jacob Minkoff and narrative design lead Taylor Kurosaki, who will be taking on the roles of design director and narrative director, respectively. Minkoff had been at Naughty Dog since 2009 but had exited the studio in January, according to his LinkedIn page, and Kurosaki had called the Uncharted studio home since 2004. Kurosaki also spent a couple years at Naughty Dog in the ’90s.
This might be another bummer for Naughty Dog, which has lost a few high profile staff members already this year. The biggest of these is Uncharted mastermind Amy Hennig, who’s now at Visceral working on a Star Wars thing.
On the flip side, this could be a boon for IW, which has disappointed a bit with the two Call of Dutys it’s produced since a pile of its staff, including co-founders Jason West and Vince Zampella, left and started Respawn Entertainment in 2010. Perhaps this injection of Naughty Dog blood can help IW’s next Call of Duty (the 2016 one) significantly improve on Ghosts.