Uncharted PS4’s Game Director Justin Richmond Leaves Naughty Dog

Justin Richmond, who was most recently working as game director on the PlayStation 4 Uncharted game, has decided to leave Naughty Dog to join Riot Games. Riot are the studio that make the staggeringly popular League of Legends.

Richmond gave the following statement to IGN:

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I have in fact made the decision to leave Naughty Dog, I love the company and the people and know that they will continue to create awesome games going forward. On a happier note, after careful consideration and exploration I have joined Riot Games. There is some really innovative stuff going on here that I can’t wait to be a part of.

This news comes not long after the departure of another of Naughty Dog’s leading creative talents, Amy Hennig, who left the company earlier this month. Sony Santa Monica, another key element in Sony Worldwide Studios family also suffered a significant round of layoffs recently so things aren’t exactly looking rosy for Sony in Southern California.

We’re not sure what impact this will have on the ongoing development of Uncharted for PlayStation 4 but both Richmond and Hennig were specifically noted as being involved with the project at the reveal last year so their roles were obviously something Sony was keen to promote. Hopefully there’ll be some reassuring words from SCEA soon.

Source: IGN

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19 Comments

  1. What on earth is going on with Sony’s first party devs?? :-(

  2. But nobody wants to leave Naughty Dog. It would be like dying and asking god if you can leave heaven :O

    If you believe in that sort of thing.

  3. this worries me, I hope it doesn’t effect the games too much

  4. ND employ around 250 people. If their retention is five years, let’s say, it means that there’s usually 50 people leaving every year. That’s nearly one a week. It makes sense that people from the upper echelon’s of the games industry are going to move on from time-to-time.

    ND’s respect amongst the industry must be stratospheric so no problem filling the posts, I’m sure.

    • While I do agree they have plenty of staff and won’t have a problem replacing him, the amount of cutbacks and high-profile names all leaving at the same time does worry me a bit.

      • You might find that the clustering of said job moves is only the media leaping on things now.

  5. But…did’nt Naughty Dog ‘recently’ get someone comeover from Halo 4’s 343 or something.Honest to god at my age i cannie keep abreast of the industry musical chairs..

    He’s left….. to go to….. as they are doing some crazy shit….

    Meanwhile, she’s up and moved from….. and ended up on…….despite her previous lot responsible for XXXXXXX.

    Will someone actually sit the f**k down, finish the game in hand, then go where ever the mood takes them.

    All it’s going to mean is delayed games, lack of focus, re-writes etc.

    Uncharted 3 suffered in my view from being a split project, 1 team on this, 1 on The Last Of Us, now they are piddling about with Uncharted 4 already..chances are the new ‘guy’ (or lady) will have ideas of his/her own, want to take project in another direction…

    Think i’ll hold off that PS4 until all this commotion within Sony in-house teams or what not, settles down.

    • Conversely, The Last Of Us was produced by the other half of the split team and was one of the best games last gen. It doesn’t necessarily spell disaster, a fresh perspective can produce new and exciting things. Hopefully that will be the case here.

      • Then again it turn out worse like halo 4

    • this guy was director of uncharted 3 the guys who made the last of us made uncharted 2.

  6. With Riot Games being at the forefront of e-sports and having the biggest online game there is, i’m not surprised he’s left to go onto bigger things.

  7. Interesting time to leave a position on a blockbuster AAA at one of the most highly regarded studios. You’d think he’d want to finish the game first. Riot must have waved a lot of cash or something.

    • Not just that, fella. Often people look for a new challenge and the current job can’t always offer that.

      • True, I suppose it could be seen as similar work to what he did on previous installments. But still, leaving a big project like this before completion? Sounds like he wasn’t very invested in it.

        Anyhoo, good luck to Richmond at his new job. Hope he finds it fulfilling and doesn’t end up feeling homesick.

        He was the director for UC2 MP, could it be he was “just” in charge of the MP here aswell? If so, it’s easier to understand as there’s no story element to be worried about.

  8. Could somebody tell us what does all this mean ? There have been a lot of white flags lately appearing from Sony employees and a lot of layoffs as well. Is this a normal process ?
    Or is there a shift happening ? Did somebody new appear and a lot of people aren’t willing to take on new changes so are they just leaving ?

  9. not being funny, but I doubt it will be much of a loss to the team as a whole.

  10. I think they’ve probably garnered such respect from the industry with the success of Uncharted and TLoU that it’s very likely lot’s of new doors have opened for them. Best of luck to them and i know ND will keep up the quality.

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