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Uncharted 3 lead designer quitting Naughty Dog to become teacher

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Lemarchand goes experimental

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Uncharted 3 lead leaves Naughty Dog

Naughty Dog lead designer Richard Lemarchand is leaving an eight-year career at the famed Uncharted studio to pursue a teaching career at the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California.

In an interview with Gamasutra, the former Uncharted 3 lead said his exit from the studio following the success of the third title in the Uncharted series "seems like a natural transition point."

"I was involved with the 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 amount of completeness for me," he says.

Lemarchand now plans to follow other passions which include experimental and avant-garde game projects.

The designer explains he dabbles in these side-projects in his spare time, however "if I wanted to go out on a limb and take a chance to see some other opportunities, I always thought that the end of Uncharted 3 would be a good time to do that, and then I was very lucky that this opportunity came along."

Lemarchand previously acted as an external thesis advisor for students of USC. He begins his new career at the university's Interactive Media Division following a three-month trip backpacking across the world as part of ongoing research for his experimental games.

"Some are to do with procedural narrative; some are to do with space and exploration," says Lemarchand. "I've always been very interested in the power of environmental narrative."

USC's Interactive Media Division once trained Thatgamecompany's Jenova Chen and Kellee Santiago.