The lead actor of the Uncharted series has opened up about the departure of Amy Hennig over a year since her departure from both Uncharted 4 and Naughty Dog.
Nolan North, who portrays protagonist Nathan Drake, discussed the much controversial and discussed departure of the writer at a Q&A at Metrocon and revealed how eight months of her work was scrapped following Neil Druckmann and Bruce Straley being handed the reigns of the franchise.
“We had shot 8 months of her story and it was all thrown away,” revealed North (via VideoGamer.com). “[Druckmann and Straley] came in and you have to understand – new producers, new people, they want to do it [their way].”
“I don’t know what happened exactly. Amy is still a very, very dear friend of mine and she’s brilliant, but The Last of Us guys were the next team there, so they took over and just wanted their own flavour. ”
Hennig, writer of the Uncharted series, left the studio in March 2014, after 10 years employed. At the time it was reported by sources that she was “forced out” of the company by both Druckmann and Straley.
Naughty Dog later firmly denied these reports, saying there is nothing more to be said on the subject.
Following Hennig’s departure, several more staff also left the studio.
The Director of Uncharted 3, Justin Richmond, was the next to go, joining League of Legends developer Riot Games.
Todd Strashwick, who wasn’t officially an employee of Naughty Dog but was cast in the upcoming Uncharted 4 left shortly thereafter, announcing that the studio decided to re-cast his role.
Following Strashwick, Lead Artist Nate Wells also left the studio and joined Giant Sparrow, developers of The Unfinished Swan, and Michael Knowland, a Lead Character Artist, left after more than 2 years employed.
Both Jacob Minkoff and Taylor Kurosaki were the next two people to depart, joining Call of Duty developer Infinity Ward.
“They got rid of some of the other people that were involved and just redid their thing,” added North.
“Great move they made with Troy Baker playing my brother. And they knew that was going to work because Troy and I are friends, and he had done Joel and they knew he and I had a good rapport.”
First revealed in November 2013, Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End was officially announced back in June 2014 during Sony’s E3 conference.
It picks up three years following the events of Uncharted 3, where Drake has settled down with his new wife Elena. But his life is thrown into chaos his elder brother assumed dead, Sam, returns.
Sam tells Drake that they must find a legendary pirate artefact as his life hangs in the balance. The two then journey to Libertaria, a pirate colony in Madagascar, in search of the artefact but come across two other rivals, Rafe and Nadine, also trying to find the artefact.
“It’s going to be along the lines of the same story,” North stated about the game. “I don’t know how it’ll affect the whole thing and to be honest with you I’m just as curious as everyone to see what the final product will look like.
“I do know there’s trust with the Naughty Dog designers and programmers and that place is still top notch, and from the things I’ve seen and the sound and all the stuff that they’ve done, it’s amazing.”
Originally scheduled for release in 2015, it was announced in March that the title has been pushed back into 2016 for more time to enhance the game’s features.
Previously, Naughty Dog also released a 15 minute gameplay video and more recently unveiled a new demo during E3 showcasing the game’s vehicular gameplay.