Uncharted 4 Branching Dialogue — "We're Not Making Mass Effect"


If it wasn’t already clear, Naughty Dog’s Neil Druckmann has now spoken up to stress that the branching dialogue options in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End won’t be as ubiquitous or involved as a BioWare game. In an interview with Eurogamer, Druckmann explained that A Thief’s End has a “very specific story,” capped off with an ending that players will not be able to change through branching dialogue options.

Uncharted 4 Branching Dialogue -- "We're Not Making Mass Effect"

“The thing I want to make sure we’re clear about is that we’re not making Mass Effect,” Druckmann said. “Uncharted has a very specific story, it has a very specific ending that’s very definitive to the franchise. But every once in a while we felt a dialogue tree would really bring you more into the scene.”

Naughty Dog said previously that A Thief’s End’s branching dialogue sequences are limited to a “few spots” where their use will be most impactful. As shown at PlayStation Experience in December, one of these scenes is an early exchange between Nathan Drake and his brother Sam.

“There’s something about Sam asking Nate about his old adventures that’s like, it would be kind of fun to have Nate–and therefore the player–pick which story they want to tell first,” Druckmann said. “And there’s a few other instances like that where it felt like a dialogue tree was just going to get you more into the scene and make it more interactive.”

Branching dialogue is common in role-playing games from BioWare and others, but this is the first time it’s shown up in an Uncharted game.

Also in the interview, Druckmann spoke briefly about the future of Uncharted 4, the last game in the series that Naughty Dog plans to develop.

“Whether that’s it for Uncharted? I don’t know. At the end of the day Sony owns Uncharted and they can do whatever they want,” he said. “But with the end of this story it will be really hard to do a sequel with Nathan Drake. Maybe there’ll be a prequel, maybe it will be a different character–I don’t know. But this is the end for Nathan Drake.”

Previously, Druckmann said the events of Uncharted 4 mean it would be “really hard” for Drake to star in a future game. Before that, Uncharted 4 lead writer Josh Scherr said it’s “hard to imagine” the series moving forward without Drake in the lead role.

After another delay, Uncharted 4 is now scheduled to arrive in late April 2016 exclusively for PlayStation 4.