After nearly a decade at Naughty Dog creative director Dan Arey is leaving the company to join Ready at Dawn, GamesIndustry.biz can reveal.
Arey worked on games in the hit Crash Bandicoot and Jak and Daxter series, plus forthcoming PlayStation 3 exclusive Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. He held the title of creative director, as he will do at RAD - which was itself formed by former Naughty Dog staff and is best known for producing PSP spin-off Daxter.
"Naughty Dog and Sony were a wonderful ride, and it was an experience I'll never forget," Arey told GI.biz in an interview published today.
"Ready at Dawn reminds me of where we were at Naughty Dog about eight years ago... RAD and my philosophy about character and IP development match very well. Designing visually interesting, compelling, emotionally rich characters, tied inextricably to great gameplay, is something we both love to do."
Arey leaves Naughty Dog with some time to go before Uncharted hits the shelves, but said his work on the project was already complete when he made the decision to move on.
According to Arey, Uncharted will be "A great game... People will be happy they have a PS3 once they've played Drake's Fortune."
Founded in 2003, Ready at Dawn received critical acclaim for Daxter and is now working on another PSP title, God of War: Chains of Olympus. In addition the studio is producing an original IP, details of which have yet to be announced.
"The IP we're developing is amazing, and it is much bigger than just a game, but still retains amazing game potential," said Arey.
RAD president and co-founder Didier Malenfant commented, "Getting someone of Danâs caliber is obviously a huge deal for us.
"Having spent the last four years slowly putting together the best console development team weâve ever had the chance to work with, and Dan being one of the industryâs most acclaimed designers and creative talent, this is further proof that we have now become a force to be reckoned with."
For more from Arey, read the full interview.