Richard Lemarchand Quits Naughty Dog To Teach
They say that those who can’t do, teach. So what does it mean when someone who can do takes a stab at teaching? And how does that affect the people for whom he used to do? We’re about to find out, as Richard Lemarchand, lead designer for the Uncharted series, has announced that he’s quit Naughty Dog in order to take a teaching position at USC.
Lemarchand will be joining USC’s celebrated School Of Cinematic Arts, joining the Interactive Media Division which, incidentally, has been repeatedly designated by the Princeton Review as America’s best game design school. But what’s especially interesting is his comments that seem to indicate the Uncharted series might be over. He decided to leave after the completion of Uncharted 3, because “It seems like a natural transition point.” Continuing, he said “I was involved with development of the Uncharted series, not quite from the beginning, but almost – and even though the Uncharted series isn’t intended to be viewed as a trilogy, maybe there’s something about the number three that felt… there is a certain [sense] of completeness for me.”
That’s a rather interesting way to put it. Naughty Dog has never indicated any intention to bring the Uncharted Series to an end – in fact, they’ve recently indicated they intend to make more in the future – but this seems a rather final act. With the company focusing on titles like the upcoming The Last Of Us, their plate is certainly full. Even so, this would be a weird place to end the series. I’m not alone in thinking that Uncharted 3 is a riveting play experience that falls apart on repeated playthroughs because the story is half-developed. I’d hate for the end of the Nathan Drake saga to leave things so ambiguous.
Chances are we’ll soon hear a clarification from Naughty Dog that the series will go on. We’ll be keeping an eye out. In the meantime, USC students interested in video games just got a hell of a great reason to change majors. #jealous.