Gordon Hunt, the director, actor, producer, and writer who worked on motion capture for the Uncharted series, has died at the age of 87 after a battle with Parkinson’s Disease.
It’s fair to say that one of the defining elements of the Uncharted games is the series’ standout animation, and engaging performances from its cast of voice actors. Today, it’s being reported that a man that played an important role in bringing these aspects of the Uncharted games to fruition has passed away.
Gordon Hunt was a talented freelance director who began working with voice actors when he was employed by animation studio Hanna-Barbera in the 1970s. In this role, he would act as the recording director on high-profile shows including Super Friends, The Richie Rich Show, and The Smurfs.
In the 1980s, he would take on his first project directly related to the video game industry by serving as recording director for the animated series based on Pac-Man. A little over a decade later, he started to transition from the world of animation to begin working on video games outright, as the demand for high-quality cutscenes with voice acting began to emerge.
Hunt worked with Crystal Dynamics on titles like Pandemonium and Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver. That latter game is particularly important, as it was the first major collaboration between him and Amy Hennig, who would go on to serve as creative director on Uncharted and its first two sequels.
In the 2000s, Hunt contributed to a broad variety of projects from a swathe of different studios. Some notable franchises that he worked on in this period are SOCOM, Tomb Raider and, God of War.
However, it’s perhaps fair to say that Hunt is best known in the world of video games for his work on the Uncharted series. He was the motion capture director and voice director on Drake’s Fortune, and the voice director on Among Thieves and Drake’s Deception, and also helped out with PS Vita spin-off Golden Abyss and The Last of Us, as per a report from Kotaku.
Hunt’s experience and expertise no doubt helped Naughty Dog give the Uncharted games the feeling of a classic adventure movie. If the long-gestating film adaptation of the franchise is true to its source material, his influence should be heard and felt just as it was in the games; in exciting, kinetic action sequences, and interactions between characters that go beyond what we’ve come to expect from video games.
The Uncharted series remains to be a hallmark franchise on PlayStation consoles, which would not have been possible without Gordon Hunt.