Uncharted 4 came out in 2016 to what one might call an enthusiastic response. After all, it was the single best-reviewed release of 2016. Furthermore, it managed to become the single best-selling installment of the series, which in turn, made it one of the best-selling releases of 2016 as well. As such, it is perfectly natural for people to wonder about how Uncharted 4 might have turned out, seeing as how its development wasn’t exactly smooth and uninterrupted throughout.
How Did the Release Differ From the Original Vision for Uncharted 4?
For those who are unfamiliar, the team behind Uncharted 4 saw a couple of notable departures during the development process. First, there was Justin Richmond, the director for both Uncharted 3 and Uncharted 4, who had left Naughty Dog for Riot Games. Second, there was Amy Hennig, who served as the writer as well as the creative director for the Uncharted series, who had left Naughty Dog for Visceral Games. As a result, Naughty Dog had to bring in the co-directors of The Last of Us, thus resulting in some changes made to their finished product.
Recently, Hennig commented on those changes. First and foremost, it is interesting to note that she stated that the final release didn’t actually differ a great deal from the original vision for Uncharted 4. However, not a great deal of difference isn’t the same as no difference whatsoever, meaning that there is still much that might interest the players of the Uncharted series.
For instance, Hennig stated that the character of Nadine Ross was an addition made to the game after her departure from Naughty Dog. It would be an exaggeration to say that the story of Uncharted 4 would have been unrecognizable without said character, but she is nonetheless important enough that there would have been significant divergences. Something that is particularly true because Nadine Ross went on to have an important role in the standalone expansion called The Lost Legacy as well.
Another excellent example can be found in the changed nature of the relationship between Nathan and Sam Drake. In short, the relationship would have been much more antagonistic in nature from the start in the original vision, so much so that Sam would have been a problem from the past that Nathan needed to resolve in some manner. For comparison, while Sam still retains some antagonistic elements in the final release, his relationship with Nathan is much more ambiguous than what Hennig described. With that said, it is not as though the two versions would have gone in wholly different directions. After all, while Sam would have started out as an antagonistic force, the plan was that Sam and Nathan would have eventually reconciled and reunified with one another by the end of the story. As such, while the two versions took somewhat different paths, they nonetheless winded up at more or less the same destination in the end.
Summed up, Uncharted 4 didn’t actually see a great deal of change in spite of the departure of two critical figures during the development process. The general course of events seems to have remained more or less the same, which prevented a lot of the potential complications that could have come up. With that said, what did change was nonetheless pretty significant, so much so that the original vision for Uncharted 4 might have made for a very different experience from the finished result.
Will There Ever Be Another Uncharted Game?
Regardless, fans of the Uncharted series might also be curious whether there will be a follow-up to Uncharted 4 at some point in the future. If so, their concern about the series’s future in spite of its financial success is understandable, seeing as how Uncharted 4 was the end of Nathan’s story. However, considering the fact that Uncharted 4 actually ended up with Nathan telling his story to he and Elena’s daughter Cassie when she comes upon some of the relics that he has retained, one can’t help but wonder whether there might be another Drake taking up the role of treasure hunter in the future. This kind of speculation has become particularly popular in recent times because there were some hiring choices made by Naughty Dog that suggest that some kind of Uncharted follow-up might indeed be coming up.