The Uncharted franchise played a major role in making Naughty Dog one of PlayStation’s premier developers during the PS3 generation.
With each new installment raising the stakes and delivering better games than before, Nathan Drake is now considered an icon of PlayStation. However, this franchise has been put to rest.
In January, Naughty Dog broke the terrible news that they were moving on from the series. The franchise’s most recent entry, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, was released in 2017, nearly six years ago.
However, I feel this decision may not be the choice for the IP and its fanbase. At present, it seems the studio is wasting a lot of potential, and I believe Naughty Dog should consider a new Uncharted game at some point.
Why it matters: With Naughty Dog currently being limited to The Last of Us, the studio could offer more varied experiences if it chose to revisit Uncharted.
Side Stories And New Adventures
It still amazes me that the last game in this IP was released nearly six years ago. Over the years, I was under the impression that this franchise would return in some form, but this does not appear to be the case.
While Uncharted 4 concluded Nathan Drake’s tale, there are tons of stories Naughty Dog can still explore for this series. In my opinion, characters like Sam, Sully, Chloe, and more are interesting enough to carry their own game.
This is precisely why 2017’s spin-off based on Chloe worked so well. Perhaps an entry about a younger Sully’s adventures after he left the Navy would be a great way to explore an important member of the supporting cast.
Similarly, Sam’s adventures would also make for an intriguing game since the character was introduced in Uncharted 4.
Uncharted: PlayStation’s Fortune
The IP’s widespread popularity means that any future game is poised for success.
My favorite game from Naughty Dog is still Uncharted 4, and unsurprisingly, it also became the IP’s best-selling release in 2016. With 15 million units sold, I can’t quite understand why the studio was in such a rush to abandon this series.
Seven years later, PlayStation is more popular than ever. Each new first-party release from PlayStation is met with record-breaking success, and it would not be far-fetched to believe this franchise would achieve similar results.
Massive PlayStation games like God of War 2018 have sold 23 million units. The Last of Us Part 2 and Ghost of Tsushima sold around 10 million copies, while Horizon Zero Dawn sold over 20 million units.
Looking at these numbers, Uncharted 4 stacks up quite well, and I can confidently say that a new entry would outsell many of PlayStation’s current flagship IPs.
Much Needed Variety For Naughty Dog
Naughty Dog has been focusing on unnecessary re-releases lately because of its reliance on a single franchise.
Now more than ever, I believe the studio is in dire need of games other than The Last of Us. Interestingly, evidence suggests that fans are willing to settle for a remake of Uncharted.
If this is the path Naughty Dog decides to pursue, then a remake of Nathan Drake’s iconic adventures would be much better to see than another Last of Us remaster. However, I believe the best approach would be the one that Santa Monica Studio took in 2018.
God of War was once subject to franchise fatigue, and PlayStation almost abandoned this franchise for good. However, with a new approach and fresh ideas, director Cory Barlog led the series to new heights while preserving the essence of God of War.
A similar soft reboot for the IP could do wonders, bringing it back without repetition. If Santa Monica Studio can pull this off, I have no reason to believe Naughty Dog can’t.
While Nathan Drake’s story may have ended for good, there is still time for Naughty Dog to pass the mantle.
The sense of wonder, exhilaration, and charm found in the series remains uncaptured by other games today, and I believe only Uncharted can fill the void left by its absence in the industry. Therefore, I am left with no choice but to hope we can revisit this IP someday in the near future.
Avinash is currently pursuing a Business degree in Australia. For more than three years, he has been working as a gaming journalist, utilizing his writing skills and love for gaming to report on the latest updates in the industry. Avinash loves to play action games like Devil May Cry and has also been mentioned on highly regarded websites, such as IGN, GamesRadar, GameRant, Dualshockers, CBR, and Gamespot.