The head of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios (SCE WWS) has said the company is eager to see a sequel to Naughty Dog’s critically acclaimed The Last of Us as much as anyone else, although reiterated that The Last of Us 2 is not in development right now.
Speaking with Eurogamer at the recent EGX, Shuhei Yoshida confirmed that talks about a possible follow-up to the post-apocalyptic action-horror title have been happening at Naughty Dog, but there’s nothing else to talk about at present.
“I asked [community strategist Arne Meyer] that question last night over dinner. We haven’t confirmed The Last of Us 2, but ever since the launch of the first game, people like [creative director Neil Druckmann] are talking about some ideas for a potential sequel, some experiments that they want to do,” said Yoshida-san.
The executive went on to say that there are "talks around development" of a sequel, but was adamant that Sony would "like to see" how a possible narrative would unfold, specifically focusing on the “life these characters have after what happened in The Last of Us.”
Yoshida-san’s comments echo that of Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann, who told the latest issue of OPM UK that ideas were being brainstormed for a follow-up, although nothing was actively in the works at the California-based studio. Druckman was responding to earlier comments from voice actor, Nolan North, who said that the developer was working on The Last of Us 2. It also didn’t help matters that Naughty Dog itself recently referred to the original game as ‘the first Last of Us,‘ fuelling speculation that it has a sequel quietly in the works.
Rumors of The Last of Us 2 date back further than that though. The game turned up on the LinkedIn profile of a former Naughty Dog employee some months ago, and the company said before E3 that it was actively exploring the possibility of a sequel. On the flip side, Troy Baker, who voiced hero Joel in The Last of Us, admitted he didn’t know anything about a possible sequel. That’s not to say he’s not up for appearing in The Last of Us 2, however.
The Last of Us was released to universal acclaim in June 2013 for PS3, eventually going on to sell over six million copies worldwide. Last summer the game was re-released for the PS4 as The Last of Us: Remastered. Despite its success, Naughty Dog admitted that it thought the game would actually bomb.