It’s fair to say that for the most part, Uncharted 4 has been a rousing success, and a fitting send off for the franchise.
However, it turns out not everyone was exactly thrilled with the way the game’s story played out.
Neil Druckmann, creative director at Naughty Dog, has described how the team had to deal with several “sexist focus testers” at the studio – one was apparently so bothered by some of the story that he was eventually asked to leave.
In an interview with Glixel, Druckmann discussed how he tries to be more open minded when it comes to introducing female characters to his games.
When I’m introducing and describing a new character to our lead character concept artist, constantly she will ask, ‘What if it was a girl?’ And I’m like, oh, I didn’t think about that. Let me think, does that affect or change anything? No? Cool, that’s different. Yeah, let’s do it.
Before we really get into why the focus tester was asked to leave, I have to warn you of some pretty major Uncharted 4 spoilers. If you haven’t finished the game yet, then I’d advise against scrolling past Donut Drake, guardian of the spoiler.
Okay, so Uncharted 4 features a pretty big fight scene in which the female antagonist Nadine essentially beats the crap out of Nathan and his brother Sam.
The second scene that caused a problem was the game’s epilogue. You take control of Nathan and Elena’s daughter – the implication being that she has the same thirst for adventure as her dear old dad.
In the first draft of the epilogue, players took on the role of a son, not a daughter. Shockingly, certain focus testers took issue with both of these scenes.
You have some sexist focus testers who were really upset by Nadine beating up Nate, and really upset at the end when it was Nate’s daughter.
Apparently, it reached the point where one focus tester was cursing Naughty Dog, claiming he guessed he was “done with Uncharted” if they were to ever make another one with Nathan’s daughter. He was that affected that he was asked to leave.
To be fair though, can you imagine a game about a female treasure hunter/adventurer? I mean, how shit would that be?
Oh. Awkward. Well, for the most part it seems like (broadly speaking) nobody else gave a shit about the way women were portrayed in Uncharted 4.
It’s a great game, with a great story, so let’s all just get along.
Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.