Evan Wells
Wells at the Game Developers Choice Awards in 2010
NationalityAmerican
Alma materStanford University
OccupationGame director, artist
Years active1993–present
EmployerNaughty Dog
TitleCo-president

Evan Wells is an American video game designer and programmer, and co-president of Naughty Dog. Wells' first video game was at Sega, where he worked on ToeJam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron, before moving to Crystal Dynamics in 1995 to work on Gex and Gex: Enter the Gecko. He was employed at Naughty Dog in 1998, working on several Crash Bandicoot and Jak and Daxter titles before becoming co-president of the company alongside Stephen White in 2005; White was replaced the following year by Christophe Balestra, who retired in 2017. The two oversaw the release of the Uncharted series, and The Last of Us. Wells remained the sole president, overseeing the release of The Last of Us Part II, until Neil Druckmann's promotion to co-president in 2020.

Career

Evan Wells graduated from Stanford University in 1995 with a computer science degree.[1] He worked at Sega in 1993, working on ToeJam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron (1993) as a lead tester, before working at Crystal Dynamics from 1994 to 1998, working on Gex (1998) as a programmer, and Gex: Enter the Gecko (1998) as lead designer. Wells then moved to Naughty Dog, where he worked on Crash Bandicoot: Warped (1998), Crash Team Racing (1999),[2] Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy (2001), Jak II (2003), Jak 3 (2004) and Jak X: Combat Racing (2005).[3] Following the departure of founders Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin in 2004, Wells became co-president of Naughty Dog alongside Stephen White; White was replaced by Christophe Balestra after a year. Wells continued to work as co-president during the release of the Uncharted titles (2007–17), as well as The Last of Us (2013). Balestra retired from the company in April 2017; Wells became the sole president.[4] Neil Druckmann was promoted to vice president in March 2018,[5] and to co-president alongside Wells in December 2020.[6] Wells will executive produce a television adaptation of The Last of Us with HBO.[7]

Works

Video games

Year Game title Role
1993 ToeJam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron Lead tester, level design[3]
1995 Gex Programmer[3]
1998 Gex: Enter the Gecko Lead designer[3]
1998 Crash Bandicoot: Warped Lead designer[3]
1999 Crash Team Racing Lead designer
2001 Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy Lead designer
2003 Jak II Lead designer
2004 Jak 3 Lead designer
2005 Jak X: Combat Racing Co-president
2007 Uncharted: Drake's Fortune Co-president
2009 Uncharted 2: Among Thieves Co-president
2011 Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Co-president
2013 The Last of Us Co-president
2014 The Last of Us: Left Behind Co-president
2016 Uncharted 4: A Thief's End Co-president
2017 Uncharted: The Lost Legacy President
2020 The Last of Us Part II President

Film and television

Year Title Notes
2013 Grounded: Making The Last of Us Documentary[8]
2015 Conversations with Creators Web series; Episode 2[9]
TBD The Last of Us Television series; executive producer[7]

References

  1. ^ "Naughty Dog 30th Anniversary Contest". welovefine. Mighty Fine. Archived from the original on July 26, 2017. Retrieved July 27, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ https://www.usgamer.net/articles/how-crash-team-racing-challenged-mario-kart-and-made-naughty-dog-what-it-is-today
  3. ^ a b c d e "Naughty Dog's Evan Wells". Eurogamer. Gamer Network. Archived from the original on July 26, 2017. Retrieved July 27, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ Dornbush, Jonathon (March 8, 2017). "Naughty Dog Co-President Christophe Balestra Announces Departure From Studio". IGN. Ziff Davis. Archived from the original on March 9, 2017. Retrieved March 9, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Wells, Evan (March 9, 2018). "An Update from Studio President Evan Wells". Naughty Dog. Sony Interactive Entertainment. Archived from the original on March 10, 2018. Retrieved March 10, 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ Valentine, Rebekah (December 4, 2020). "Neil Druckmann named co-president of Naughty Dog". Gamesindustry.biz. Gamer Network. Archived from the original on December 5, 2020. Retrieved December 5, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ a b Otterson, Joe (March 5, 2020). "'The Last of Us' Series in Development at HBO From 'Chernobyl' Creator". Variety. Retrieved March 5, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ Naughty Dog and Area 5 (2013). Grounded: Making The Last of Us. Sony Computer Entertainment. Archived from the original on October 11, 2014. Retrieved July 27, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ Wheaton, Wil (June 22, 2015). "Conversations with Creators with Wil Wheaton Premieres July 7th". PlayStation Blog. Sony Computer Entertainment. Archived from the original on July 10, 2015. Retrieved July 27, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)