With the commercial success of The Last of Us 2, rumors of a sequel instantly hit the internet after launch. The speculation could now be put to rest as Naughty Dog confirmed ongoing work on The Last of Us 3 plot.
However, active development is still pending. In a recent podcast titled 'Script Apart,' the game's creative director Neil Druckmann shared some candid details about The Last of Us 3 and its current state.
The Last of Us 3 story being outlined, development yet to begin, confirms Neil Druckmann
Druckmann elaborated on the team's status regarding a sequel and its progression so far on the podcast. He said,
"I don’t know how much I want to reveal... [co-writer Halley Gross] and I did write an outline for a story, that we're not making – but I hope one day can see the light of day – that explores a little bit what happens after this game. We’ll see.”
Naughty Dog usually take their time after releasing a major title to dig for a new idea. Druckmann said the team needed to be "jazzed by the idea for the next title to succeed." He elaborated and said that,
"We take a long time to explore different ideas, whether it’s going to be Last of Us III, whether it's something new, whether there's some old franchise we want to go back to. I like to fully explore all of those, then look at, like: okay, we have all of these ideas in front of us. As a studio, what do we want to commit to? Because it’s a huge commitment – monetary, time, passion, talent, so you think about all the opportunity costs that come with that."
While The Last of Us 2 gained commercial success, the direction for the next installment of the game seems ambiguous at best. The studio is allegedly split between developing a rumored standalone Last of Us multiplayer game, a new "Uncharted" project, or a full remake of the original Last of Us.
With all of this work in the pipeline, it may be a while before The Last of Us 3 sees the light of day.