Saturday, 25 Jun 2022

Uncharted 4 Ditched The Idea Of A Stamina Bar "To Keep Everything Quick And Moving"

Naughty Dog experimented with a stamina bar in Uncharted 4: A Thief's End to make platforming "feel more challenging" but ultimately scrapped the concept to not get in the way of the action.

Uncharted 4's co-writer Josh Scherr appeared on the YouTube channel CouchSoup (via Eurogamer) to discuss some little-known facts about the project's development. One such point is the team's concept to add a limited stamina bar for climbing mechanics. As planned, such sections would've been far more difficult than in previous entries and more suitable for the overall "darker" tone.

"A lot of the stuff that happens early on are prototypes of design things that eventually make it in [to a game]," Scherr said. "We were looking to do some interesting things with the climbing mechanics. We did all these interesting things with a stamina bar, trying to make it feel more challenging."

Just picture an old rusty Drake, who can slip down the cliff anytime you're leisurely exploring the scenery, enjoying all the little details that artists and designers have poured into the environment. Think of it like watching Link plummet down a mountain because he's jumped one too many times. Better yet, what about the protagonist whose stamina is drained right in the middle of a super-intense chase sequence, while Drake has to hang out on a rope behind the car for several minutes?

If that doesn't sound too exciting or if it just sounds annoying, you're on the same page as Naughty Dog, who ultimately decided to scrap this idea. The devs felt it got in the way of how the studio liked to seamlessly blend together platforming and gunplay.

"We didn't want to have people paying attention to stamina while they were also outrunning people shooting [at them] and all that kind of stuff, we wanted to keep everything quick and moving along," Josh Scherr explained.

That's probably for the best: we've already got enough games that kill us if we don't manage our stamina effectively enough.

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