Uncharted is one of my favorite video game series of all time. The cinematic storytelling, sense of adventure, memorable characters, and lighthearted humor make playing these games a fun ride, no matter how many times I experience them.
I recently earned the platinum trophy for the Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection (which includes remastered versions of A Thief’s End and The Lost Legacy). It was my first ever Uncharted platinum, and I had a great time going for it. Sitting in my living room, playing it into the late hours of the night with all the lights turned off, made me feel like a teenager again. However, after those Lost Legacy credits started rolling, I was left with a “strange feeling of emptiness.” Then, I began to question whether or not this was really it for the series.
Naughty Dog has pretty much confirmed that they have no interest in making another Uncharted anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean another studio couldn’t pick up the IP. There has been an outsourced Uncharted game with Uncharted: Golden Abyss on PS Vita, a Sony Bend game; the studio behind the open-world zombie game Days Gone.
So, a potential sequel to the mainline series is entirely possible, and the way I see it, the story could go in a few different directions from where we left off. This begs the age-old question: What’s next for Uncharted?
A CASSIE DRAKE ADVENTURE
Prior to the initial release of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End back in 2016, Naughty Dog confirmed that the installment was going to be Nathan Drake’s last adventure, with the co-writer and creative director Neil Druckmann even stating, “With the end of this story, it will be tough to do a sequel with Nathan Drake.”
Some might take this as Druckmann confirming that the series is over and that we should move on; it had a good run. I would agree with this sentiment if it weren’t for the existence of The Lost Legacy. But I’ll get to that. All this statement tells me is that any future Uncharted games won’t feature Nathan Drake as the lead. But many other characters could take his place, such as his daughter, Cassie.
I honestly don’t have much to say about this. While Cassie is the most obvious choice, she’s not who I would want as the next Uncharted protagonist. It just wouldn’t make much sense. The epilogue of A Thief’s End tells us that the Drakes are all about ancient artifacts and adventuring, but it’s also apparent that Nate and Elena wanted to shield Cassie from all of the “shady stuff” they were into back in the day. They want better for her, and I feel like if Cassie grows up to become a rugged thief like her father, it would dampen the ending of A Thief’s End.
You could argue that Cassie doesn’t have to necessarily be a “thief” in order to go on her own treasure-hunting adventures. Sure, they could go down the Indiana Jones route and make her more of an archeologist, but that wouldn’t be very Uncharted. The series embraces the fact that the characters you’re following on these adventures are thieves—criminals trying to make a buck or two. To me, that’s what makes Uncharted so fun and exciting. Nate certainly cared a lot about the history behind the treasures he sought, but two things can be true at once.
I think Cassie going down that same path would be doing a disservice to her character and the series as a whole. I wouldn’t want to see that happen.
A CHLOE AND NADINE ADVENTURE (AGAIN)
As I mentioned before, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is the sole reason why I think another Uncharted game is warranted. I find it hard to believe that they would have such an amazing close to A Thief’s End to then turn around and put out a continuation that doesn’t feel nearly as conclusive.
While The Lost Legacy was initially planned as a DLC for A Thief’s End, the game blew up to become a full-fledged entry on its own, and it’s incredible! But that’s the problem. It makes me crave more globe-trotting adventures with these characters because they’re such a joy to experience. Whereas I would’ve been content had the series concluded with A Thief’s End.
Part of what made The Lost Legacy enjoyable was the relationship between the lead characters, Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross. Their chemistry is surprisingly great, especially considering how different they are. But that’s why their dynamic works so well. We get to witness their walls come down throughout the game’s story, and it’s done so well that I can’t help but want to see these two ladies team up for another treasure-hunting escapade. I also think that Chloe worked well as the player character, proving that Uncharted can exist outside of Nathan Drake, whether Chloe is the one who takes the reigns or not.
A SAM AND SULLY ADVENTURE
A game following Sam Drake and Victor Sullivan with Sam as the lead seems the most logical way to go for another Uncharted after Lost Legacy. Something we know for sure is that Sam and Sully become “business partners” and work together for years before both retiring. So, what shenanigans did they get into together?
Sam Drake would be my ideal Uncharted protagonist for a multitude of reasons. He’s much like his brother so that the Drake DNA wouldn’t be lost, and he pairs great with Sully. According to Nate in A Thief’s End, the two don’t always see eye-to-eye, which bodes potential for the hilarious and witty banter that the series is known for. Placing Sam at the center of it all would also be a great opportunity to give his character a more honorable arc, similar to what’s been done with Nate and Chloe in other games. Sam must prove that he’s worthy of being the new series protagonist. I would still want him to be a bit sleazy but have a motivation that’s beyond just greed.
Not to mention other characters could also be brought into the mix. It would be awesome to see Sam and Sully team up with Chloe and Nadine or Charlie Cutter for a large-scale treasure hunt. There are so many ancient cities left out there to find, which is something I could do an entire section on, but I’m going to stop here so this article doesn’t overstay its welcome.
I could be completely off-base here and just trying to cope with the fact that there will be no more Uncharted (at least not in video game form). But like I’ve said before, I have a lot of fun speculating about this kind of stuff, and who knows, maybe that feeling of emptiness that I mentioned in the beginning won’t go away. Then perhaps I should take into consideration what Nathan Drake tells Sam in the final chapter of A Thief’s End:
“… as thrilling as the next adventure might be, in the end, you’re always left with that same feeling. Sometimes you just gotta choose what you’re gonna keep and… and what you’re gonna let go.”
As a student of film and journalism, I enjoy screenwriting, filmmaking, cooking, gaming, and movies. I'm also a cat person and a sucker for a good cup of coffee. But above all else, I’m just a chill guy who loves to talk about and share the things he’s most passionate about.