Naughty Dog reportedly cuts staff, putting halt to The Last of Us multiplayer spin-off

More layoffs in the industry.

An image of Ellie from The Last of Us Part 1
Image via Naughty Dog

The layoffs in the video games industry continue today as the studio behind The Last of Us, Naughty Dog, reportedly cuts down its staff by at least 25 developers.

The downsizing was reportedly communicated internally at the Santa Monica-based studio in California last week, according to Kotaku on Oct. 3. The layoffs surround departments such as art and production, with the main focus being on quality assurance testing. The development of The Last of Us multiplayer game has also been put on hold.

Kotaku claims “at least 25 developers” were part of the layoffs. However, it seems these were mostly part-time contractors. Full-time staff don’t appear to be affected.

The 25-plus devs are reportedly not getting any severance offered, and the studio is insisting its employees remain quiet about the situation. Their contracts are scheduled to end at the end of October, and they are expected to work for the rest of the month. Not many details have been revealed by the developers. The report added that the game isn’t “canceled” but “basically on ice” at the moment.

In May, Naughty Dog released a message on X (formerly known as Twitter), thanking fans for their support of the franchise after the release of HBO’s TV series. The studio said it had been working hard on the multiplayer title, and will have more to show soon. It now looks like this won’t be the case unless something changes soon.


Mateusz Miter
Polish Staff Writer. Mateusz previously worked for numerous outlets and gaming-adjacent companies, including ESL. League of Legends or CS:GO? He loves them both. In fact, he wonders which game he loves more every day. He wanted to go pro years ago, but somewhere along the way decided journalism was the more sensible option—and he was right.