PlayStation’s Worldwide Studios have built a strong reputation over the years as some of the most talented teams in the world. Quality is associated with teams like Naughty Dog, Sony Santa Monica, Sucker Punch, Guerrilla Games, Insomniac Games, Sony Japan Studio, Media Molecule and much more.
With over a dozen in house development teams, there’s evidence that Sony might be in the process of building another one that looks to be based in San Diego.
Up to this point, Sony has remained completely silent as to the existence of this secret team but there’s a few things that have managed to slip through the cracks and have reached the ears of fans.
So what exactly do we know?
For starters, we do know this San Diego team was originally dubbed Visual Arts Support Group and provided support with cinematic and animation for essentially all of Sony’s first party titles.
In 2018 however, the first sign of Visual Art’s becoming something much bigger, came out. Job listings were found, stating that the team was hiring for a AAA third-person action game that would deliver “the next chapter of cinematic storytelling.”
Since then, the team has been hiring talent left and right with track records that have lead some to speculate that this team will carry on the Uncharted franchise. A tweet from former talent acquisition lead at PlayStation, helped support this theory by mentioning that a new development team would partner with a major first party studio.
Even though Naughty Dog has closed the book and crushed any hopes of their involvement in another game, Uncharted is still a flagship franchise for Sony and it makes sense that they would want to continue it in some fashion.
The talent hired to bulk up the team includes many former Naughty Dog employees that would lend credence to the speculation. Some employees, like, Uncharted 4 combat/level designer Quentin Cobb and environment artist Zak Oliver, who worked on Naughty Dog’s last 4 games. They’ve also hired, Killer Instinct designers David Hall and John Bautista, as well as Red Dead Redemption 2’s Lead Gameplay Animator James Martinchek.
This is pretty much the extent of what we know about this San Diego team up to this point. It’s a little over 2 years now, since they started to flesh out their team and since then, information has remained in limbo.
You’d have to imagine the team is still staffing up and won’t be anywhere near ready to show anything for some time. But nonetheless, the existence of what looks to be a new in house studio, added to the likes of Naughty Dog, Sucker Punch, Guerrilla etcetera etcetera, is reason to be excited to see whatever they have cooking.
Let’s just hope this team get’s properly revealed some time in the near future.