Naughty Dog reveals that its upcoming PlayStation 4 exclusive, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, may not end up being the final entry in the long-running series.
While recently discussing Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, Naughty Dog’s Director of Communications, Arne Meyer, recently revealed the possibility of continuing the series after wrapping up Nathan Drake’s story line. In the past, the studio behind Uncharted 4 has been quite open about tying up the remaining narrative threads for the action-adventure franchise’s popular protagonist. Earlier this summer, Neil Druckmann tweeted that he was happy to see Nathan Drake “looking good for his last E3”.
Uncharted 4‘s co-director even went on record later in the year to say that he and Naughty Dog believed the game to be “end of an era”. Of course, should the studio have remained mum on the matter, fans would have been able to parse out that it was the last crusade for Nathan Drake with the title containing the phrase A Thief’s End.
Even though Uncharted 4 might be the last time we see the charming and cocksure rogue in action, Meyer explained that there’s a lingering possibility of the franchise moving forward should creators conjure up more yarns to spin during the production process. However, Naughty Dog’s Director of Communications stresses that he and the development team felt that the move to the PlayStation 4 triggered the studio’s instinct to “step away” once the sequel is complete. Regarding the issue, Meyer said:
“It may be scary from the outside to say this, but we don’t have a franchise plan or anything, or even a big idea of where anything is going. We treat each individual game as with the equal level of importance and approach it fresh every time. We’ve always said to ourselves internally that when we’re in the pre-production stage, we’re trying to figure out what type of game we’re trying to make. Do we continue the series or not? If things don’t feel fresh or it doesn’t feel like we have an actual story to tell, it doesn’t feel like we’re able to try new things or innovate with gameplay, then we’ll start thinking about stepping away from it. Every time it’s worked out in that we’re like, oh yeah we have a story to tell.
“Now with moving to the PS4 and being able to take everything we learned from the previous three games and apply it here and looking at where the story arcs went for the first three games, it feels like a natural time to step away. It was something we were coming to realize in the early phases of development that it was feeling like the right time.”
Ever since 2007, the Uncharted releases have been prominent properties for PlayStation consoles, so it’s understandable for Naughty Dog to have some reluctance when considering moving away from the series entirely. At the very least, many would consider Uncharted 2 to be one of the top 25 games of the last generation, while the others have been strong entries as well.
Nevertheless, development for Uncharted 4 is still in progress, and that means almost anything can happen with in-game materials. As it happens, some fans have been sharing their theories regarding how the main story will relate to tentative expansions. Taking the DLC into account, Meyer made it evident that the actual add-ons’ content isn’t even being considered at the moment, saying:
“I was talking with Neil (game director) about a month ago when that was just revealed and reading all the stories and fan reactions about it. It was interesting because people are thinking maybe we’ll hold back some of the story or stuff like that. But he’s like, ‘I have no idea what we’re going to do with that.’ We’re so busy on the actual game and I was talking to him and saying that we’re taking a big risk here because we have no idea what we’re going to do yet. We’ve committed to putting something together and it has to be a high level of quality and have a really engaging story, and we’ve said that this is the final chapter. We have all these things we need to resolve at some point but we have no idea what that is.
“Neil hasn’t even begun to think about what the storyline for the single-player DLC is. Then obviously we don’t have the resources to work on it because everyone’s working on the game. We just know that we’re going to do it.”
With development of the base offerings for Uncharted 4 being the main priority, it makes sense for downloadable content getting put on the back burner. After all, it’s evident that Druckmann and company wish to put out the best product possible without stressing over supplementary components, especially since the game’s already been delayed to deliver a satisfying ending. At any rate, with the sequel still in flux, there’s no telling what else the future may hold for the series.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End is set for release next year on March 18, 2016, exclusively for the PlayStation 4.