Naughty Dog principal environment artist Anthony Vaccaro has opened up about his experience of working on the Last of Us remake. This seems like the studio managed to finish the game without crunch this time, creating a healthy work culture.
On July 12, Naughty Dog announced that The Last of Us Part I has gone gold, meaning that the project’s development is finally completed.
Vaccaro shared his excitement on Twitter and noted that it was the “first time in my 13-year career, across multiple studios, that I didn’t need to crunch to finish a game.”
This is the first time in my 13 year career, across multiple studios that I didn’t need to crunch to finish a game. Feels good, really good. Especially hitting the same quality bar as TLOU2. More work to keep doing but proud of the big changes so far to make the studio healthier. https://t.co/gbzyHKpVbh
— Anthony Vaccaro (@vaccaro3d) July 11, 2022
However, a few people in the comments tried to downplay the amount of work that has been put into making the remake of The Last of Us. Some players thought that it was an easy ride, saying that the whole game was “just a repaint of the original.”
“Paint a newly built house and then fully repaint that same house with a new coat of paint and see how easy it is,” Vaccaro replied, adding that the remake was really rebuilt from the ground up.
Paint a newly built house and then fully repaint that same house with a new coat of paint and see how easy it is 🙂 For a ground up remake some departments require a lot of work while others require very little work and can focus on other projects.
— Anthony Vaccaro (@vaccaro3d) July 12, 2022
He also noted that while he can only speak for himself, it’s been great to see “all the changes from the top on down to address things” and make a shift towards a healthier work environment.
Vaccaro’s words were backed by Naughty Dog animation director Jeremy Yates: “The entire studio put so much effort into creating such a healthy and thoughtful work culture, without compromising the quality we all came here for.”
The Last of Us Part I will launch on September 2. The game will be available exclusively on PS5, with a PC version expected to come out later.