Sleepy Nate

The teaser trailer for Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End that was shown right at the conclusion of Sony’s E3 press conference earlier this week may have been stunning, but it’s ended up raising more questions than it’s answered. Sure, we can assume that protagonist Nathan Drake is a little older in this latest adventure, and is on yet another impossible mission – but other than that, there’s not a whole lot to go on.

As part of an interview posted to PlayStation’s official YouTube channel, directors Bruce Straley and Neil Druckmann have attempted to clear up some of the mystery, explaining that developer Naughty Dog’s latest game will be an evolution of the ideas explored in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves and The Last of Us – and that it will still offer the rollercoaster pacing and character-focused story telling that fans have come to expect.

“We’re just going deeper and richer with all of the mechanics,” Straley explained. “We want you on the edge of your seat, but at the same time, we want to make sure that you as players feel invested. We want to make sure that we have that with the epic, with the pacing, [and] with the characters that we’re known for.”

We want you on the edge of your seat, but at the same time, we want to make sure that you as players feel invested

Druckmann added: “Our motto on Uncharted 2 was ‘keep it core’. No matter how big the set-piece gets, keep it on the control stick [and] keep the core systems, so taking that into Uncharted 4 has been all about expanding Nate’s core moveset. How do we build more systems that will give players more options – more ways to approach either exploration, traversal, or combat?”

The talented twosome also shared a word on the outing's outstanding visual fidelity, as glimpsed in the first footage. “The tech really allowed us to get more subtlety, and you’re seeing hints of that in the trailer,” beamed Druckmann. “How much we could show pain or grimaces, or... you know, it’s a subtle touch, but as [Drake] raises his eyebrows, the colour of your skin changes as the blood flows away from that compression. These things allow a realistic character to become much more grounded.”

However, the duo don’t believe that the graphics will matter all that much if the fiction and moment-to-moment action fail to deliver. “Ultimately, I think that it will come down to: how good is the gameplay and how good is the story?” concluded Druckmann. “Without that, you can have all of the graphical bells and whistles and it doesn’t matter, but, if you have that really strong foundation, those things can really help to take it over the top.”