After a successful launch for the PlayStation 4, Sony cannot rest on their laurels. To remain ahead in the “next-generation” console competition, they have to churn out quality software to go along with their well-received hardware. Like any new console, the PS4 enjoyed a host of eye-popping first party titles at launch – only to see a shortage of exclusive games in the coming months. inFamous: Second Son offered a sharp shot of adrenaline to help keep sales moving and, with E3 2014 officially underway, several other titles have been confirmed for holiday 2014 release.
However, the console is still short on blockbuster IP’s – which has made the wait for Uncharted 4 all the more difficult. Following a brief teaser trailer on the eve of the PS4 launch, Sony has been tight-lipped about the next Nathan Drake adventure. In fact, up until recently, some gamers weren’t even sure that Drake would be the main protagonist. Now, thanks to an Uncharted 4 E3 2014 trailer, which closed out the publisher’s media briefing, we’ve got our first look at Drake on the PS4.
Of course, with a 2015 release date planned for the title, the new trailer goes the same route as most announcement videos – as a non-gameplay cinematic teaser (check it out at the top of the page). In the video, Drake has, once again, fallen on hard times, literally, with his face mashed against the shore of a sandy beach. As a result, Sony’s cliff-climbing/gun shooting/fist fighting hero calls upon his longtime friend Victor Sullivan “one last time.”
In addition, the trailer also features the debut of the game’s subtitle, A Thief’s End, following in the long line of prior Uncharted subtitles:
- Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune
- Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
- Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception
- Uncharted: Golden Abyss
- Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End
Little is known about the actual story at this point, though prior reports suggest that the game will see Drake face off against a character that was “left to rot” for fifteen years – a character that narrated the game’s PS4 launch teaser trailer (note: the voice actor has subsequently been replaced). The treasure map featured in the prior teaser led to guesswork that Uncharted 4 would be pirated-themed but the new cinematic trailer does little to add or subtract from that speculation.
So what do we learn from the new trailer? Most importantly, despite the exit of series writer/director Amy Hennig, the game appears to carry on the tradition of telling a character-focused story alongside what we expect will be the biggest and most visually stunning Uncharted game yet. Instead of showcasing Drake amidst a death-defying wall climb or vehicle chase, the video is understated and somber – playing on the relationship between Drake and Sully. Absent are Drake’s fan-favorite crew of morally ambiguous do-gooders, most notably Chloe Frazer, not to mention the main hero’s better half, Elena Fisher.
Could Uncharted 4, which is promised to tell a story of betrayal and revenge, see Fisher once again put in jeopardy – all because of a mistake from Drake’s past or new “sure fire plan”? That would certainly explain the defeated look on his face at the beginning of the trailer. Not to mention, is the thief that meets an end, referenced in the subtitle, Drake or one of his foes? Could this truly be Drake’s final adventure?
Nevertheless, we can only guess at what adventures the team at Naughty Dog has in store for gamers – though they’ve already promised that Uncharted 4 will see players experience Nathan Drake in a “new way.” Whether that means we’ll see a new (possibly less honorable) side to the character, a drastically updated set of gameplay mechanics, or full support for Sony’s virtual reality headset Project Morpheus, we cannot be certain at this time.
Either way, the E3 2014 cinematic trailer is a fun tease – hopefully we’ll get even more details in the coming days.
Uncharted 4 does not currently have an official release date but will launch exclusively on the PS4 in 2015.