When Uncharted: The Lost Legacy was announced to fans last year, there was a fair amount of confusion as to how the expansion was going to be handled. Naughty Dog soon revealed that the upcoming content would be sold as a standalone title, rather than DLC, and the idea first came to the developer when it was considering making Uncharted 5.
With Uncharted 4: A Thief's End bringing long-time adventurer Nathan Drake's story to its epic conclusion, a possible sequel was going to feature some of the series' side characters. Uncharted 5 was initially on the drawing board, but was originally scrapped in favor of The Lost Legacy due to the vast majority of developers working on The Last of Us: Part 2. Therefore, Naughty Dog decided on a project that they would be able to release in a year's time.
Before Chloe and Nadine were decided on as the game's leads, Sully was the favorite contender. Naughty Dog realized, however, that in order for the popular companion to be agile enough, it'd have to rewind time to back when Sully was significantly younger.
Since the developer didn't think that Sully's past as a marine didn't fit the direction they wanted to take with the final chapter in the Uncharted franchise, Naughty Dog settled on bringing back Chloe, this time as a playable character.
When the idea was first conceived, Naughty Dog imagined that the expansion would be a similar length to Left Behind but soon realized that it would be larger than anticipated. With introductions of new characters and areas, The Lost Legacy needed a little more breathing room.
Despite the upcoming game perhaps not having the same scale as one of the major Uncharted titles, there's no reason for fans to fear that the game will feel condensed. In fact, The Lost Legacy will contain the largest Uncharted level to date, in the form of the Western Ghats mountain range. It seems that with or without Nathan Drake, there's going to be plenty of room for exploration in what could have been Uncharted 5.
Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is expected to release in 2017 for PlayStation 4.
Source: Game Informer