The	
  Last	
  Of	
  Us	
  -­	
  Production	
  Pipeline	
  
	
  
Ideation	
  
	
  
The	
  co-­‐founders	
  of	
  Naughty	
...
had	
  never	
  used	
  before,	
  which	
  created	
  a	
  very	
  emotional	
  and	
  very	
  real	
  feel	
  to	
  the	...
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Last of us pipeline

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Last of us pipeline

  1. 1. The  Last  Of  Us  -­  Production  Pipeline     Ideation     The  co-­‐founders  of  Naughty  Dog  had  to  decide  whether  or  not  to  reboot  the  IP  “Jak  &  Daxter”,   the  ideas  they  were  coming  out  with  though  didn’t  suit  that  particular  IP  so  they  made  the   decision  to  start  a  new  one.     Neil  Druckmann  -­  Creative  Director,  and  Bruce  Straley  -­  Game  Director  came  forward  with  the   idea  of  a  post-­‐apocalyptic  game.  Their  two  initial  ideas  which  they  built  the  game  from  were;  a   post-­‐apocalyptic  world  and  a  developing  relationship  between  the  two  main  characters.  These   were  the  two  starting  points,  and  the  two  un-­‐changing  elements  through-­‐out  production,  right   up  to  the  finished  game.     Inspiration  came  from  many  non-­‐fiction  documentaries  and  books,  such  as  a  book  called  “The   World  Without  Us”  which  describes  what  would  become  of  the  world  if  uninhabited  by  people.   The  documentary  “Planet  Earth”  described  how  a  fungus  could  take  over  an  ants  mind  and   control  them,  this  was  the  basis  of  the  infected,  the  directors  thinking  “what  would  happen  if   this  fungus  could  move  to  humans?”     Pre-­production     Writing:   The  script  for  the  game  was  written  by  Creative  Director  Neil  Druckmann,  as  it  was  something   that  dealt  with  developing  the  story  and  characters,  which  was  his  area  of  direction.  The  reason   they  didn’t  hire  in  a  writer  was  because  the  story  was  seen  as  such  an  important  element  of  the   game  that  it  had  to  be  handled  by  a  Director.     Concept  art:   What  concept  art  does  is  give  the  designers  an  idea  of  the  overall  look  and  feel  of  the  game  and   gives  them  something  to  work  from,  the  concept  art  helped  the  evolution  of  the  infected  from  a   traditional  zombie  to  something  a  little  bit  more  different.   Michael  Knowland  -­  Lead  Character  Artist  came  up  with  the  idea  of  there  being  fungus  on  the   infected  and  created  concept  art  from  gathered  images  of  fungal  growth.     Production     Motion  capture:   The  motion  capture  was  directed  by  Neil  Druckmann  to  preserve  the  continuity  and  to  stick  to   the  script,  it  was  also  filmed  with  a  handheld  film  camera  to  get  a  natural  camera  positioning   reference  to  make  the  game  more  realistic.   Shaun  Escayg  -­  Animation  Lead  was  also  present  during  the  motion  capture  sessions  to   supervise  it  and  collect  a  reference  for  the  animation.       Music:   Gustavo  Santaolalla  -­  Composer  insisted  that  he  be  a  part  of  the  project  from  early  on,  most   composers  join  the  project  during  the  post-­‐production  but  he  wanted  to  get  a  feel  for  the  game   early  on.     In  order  to  create  a  unique  soundtrack  Gustavo  used  very  odd  and  strange  instruments  that  he  
  2. 2. had  never  used  before,  which  created  a  very  emotional  and  very  real  feel  to  the  soundtrack.       Post-­production     User  interface:   The  interface  was  originally  designed  in  a  very  complex  way,  meaning  you  had  to  go  into  a  menu   in  order  to  change  weapons  and  it  took  too  long,  so  Alexandria  Neonakis  -­  User  interface   Designer  made  an  overlay  menu  which  can  be  accessed  with  the  D-­‐Pad  in  order  to  change   weapons  easily.     QA  Testing:   Damon  Buteau-­anderson  -­  Quality  Assurance  Manager  had  the  job  of  running  QA  groups  to  find   bugs  and  glitches  in  the  game  and  report  them  so  that  they  can  be  fixed.  This  is  important  as  if   this  is  not  done  a  game  could  be  shipped  with  an  unknown  game  breaking  glitch.     Sound  Design:   Derrick  Espino  -­  Senior  Sound  Designer  did  the  sound  design  for  the  game,  his  job  is  to  think  in   creative  ways  on  how  to  create  the  audio  for  the  game,  in  order  to  create  the  sounds  for  the   zombies  he  got  a  sample  of  someone  doing  a  classic  zombie  screech  and  edited  it  with  sounds  of   himself  making  a  clicking  sound  with  his  tongue  to  create  a  unique  sound  for  the  zombies.     Promotion:   In  order  to  hit  the  right  target  audience  they  ran  the  first  advert  after  the  season  finale  of     “The  Walking  Dead”.  To  further  promote  the  game  it  was  bundled  with  the  PS3  in  selected   special  edition  boxes,  only  the  best  of  games  are  bundled  with  consoles  most  the  time  so  this   was  a  big  promotion  for  them.   A  very  simple  trailer  was  put  onto  YouTube  featuring  rioting  and  no  actual  Gameplay,  this  got   people  thinking  what  it  could  mean;  this  was  2  years  before  the  game  was  released.     Post-­mortem     The  documentary  “Grounded”,  produced  by  PlayStation  and  Area  5  productions,  serves  as  a   Post-­‐mortem,  going  through  the  Pipeline  process  with  interviews  from  different  people   involved,  and  charting  the  games  production.  Most  aspects  of  the  development  are  shown  in  the   documentary,  making  it  easy  for  them  to  look  back  and  see  what  they  could  have  potentially   done  better  and  what  was  done  good  and  what  was  done  bad.  

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