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Sony has revealed that the person - or persons - responsible for The Last of Us Part II's recent story spoilers was not a former Naughty Dog employee.
Videos of gameplay - including key cutscenes and major story beats - leaked last week, devastating fans and the development team alike.
While it had been widely reported that the leak came via a disgruntled former employee of developer Naughty Dog, aggrieved at the studio's alleged "crunch culture" - a systemic culture of long, punishing working hours to get a game finished on time - Sony now says the individual(s) responsible are not affiliated with Sony Interactive Entertainment or Naughty Dog.
In an email to GamesIndustry.biz, publisher Sony confirmed it has identified the source of the devastating story leaks and while the publisher "declined to comment further", it did acknowledge an investigation was now underway.
"Heartbroken for the team. Heartbroken for our fans. We're still incredibly excited to get the game into your hands," tweeted Naughty Dog VP, Neil Druckmann at the time the spoilers broke, while the studio itself tweeted: "It's disappointing to see the release and sharing of pre-release footage from development. Do your best to avoid spoilers and we ask that you don't spoil it for others." It later had to hide a load of spoilerific comments left by commenters on that very tweet, too.
Amazon appeared to leak the release date for The Last of Us Part II just a little while back, but the game was later delayed indefinitely earlier this month amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Naughty Dog has since, however, confirmed the eagerly anticipated sequel is set to release on 19th June 2020.
We also recently discovered the sequel will gobble up a whopping 100GB of your hard drive space, and physical versions of the game will reportedly contain two discs. So as Sarah reminded us earlier this week, brace yourself a sizeable installation, too.
"What we've done such a good job of doing [in The Last of Us Part II], is to continue to peel back layers and learn more about him," said Troy Baker - who portrays Joel in the sequel - a few weeks ago. "I even learned more about Joel and I'm the guy that walked into [the original audition] and said, 'I know the truth about Joel!' I knew his truth back then, but now, I know even more of Joel's truth."
Featured Image Credit: Naughty Dog, Sony
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