Sony has a fantastic slate of PlayStation exclusives for 2016 including Horizon: Zero Dawn from the developers of Killzone, as well as the long-awaited The Last Guardian coming out of Studio Japan. Surprisingly, the PlayStation Experience earlier in December did not come with any announcements of more first-party exclusives many fans were expecting from the likes of Bend Studio and Sony Santa Monica. The highlight of the lineup though is Naughty Dog’s Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, coming off the back of The Last of Us winning hundreds of game of the year awards.
Sony is known to give their premier developer Naughty Dog free reign on what games they want to make and how they handle the release process. In 2013, The Last of Us’ release date moved a month from May 7th to June 14th whereas prior to that Naughty Dog had never delayed a game. In a PlayStation Blog post that same year, Creative Director Neil Druckmann noted the minor delay was because the team wanted to “ensure every detail of The Last of Us was up to Naughty Dog’s internal high standards.” Two and a half years later, Druckmann echoes the same sentiment for Uncharted 4.
In similar fashion via PlayStation Blog, the lead designer announced Uncharted 4 will be delayed – fits its second time – from March 16th to April 26th. He again noted the ambition and quality benchmark the game needed to hit before shipping to fans saying, “as we approached our final deadlines and started wrapping up the game’s levels, we realized that several key sequences needed extra resources to bring them to the finish line.” He also noted the title needed “a few more polish passes” before going gold and printing the discs. Given the amount of problematic and rushed launches of triple-A titles in recent years, this is all but welcome.
It is unknown how this will affect the release timing for the announced story DLC and plans for other games down the line like the heavily rumored The Last of Us 2. Last generation saw Naughty Dog ship three Uncharted games within 24 months of one another, although now it seems the developer needs closer to three years or more with each PS4 title. PlayStation recently released new Uncharted 4 trailers for the game surrounding the evolution of Nathan Drake as a character. The release of the trailer – and new footage at The Game Awards – also signified that if there was to be a delay for the game, it would be a minor one as Sony would not market the game now in December had it been delayed to fall of 2016.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End will launch exclusively on PlayStation 4 on April 26, 2016.
Source: PlayStation Blog
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