Naughty Dog threw out eight months of Nolan North's work on Uncharted 4 after writer Amy Hennig left the studio and The Last of Us leads Neil Druckmann and Bruce Straley took over said North, the voice actor of Nathan Drake, during a MetroCon panel earlier this month.
Responding to a question about whether Hennig's departure changed the script, North joked at first and then got serious.
"Yeah," North said, as you can see in a video posted on YouTube user' mrgeekmeout's channel. "I can't really say too much about that, but I will. We had shot eight months of her story, and it was all thrown away."
North portrays Nathan Drake in the PlayStation-exclusive series, on which Hennig served as the creative director and writer for the first three games. She left Naughty Dog in early 2014, after which Druckmann and Straley assumed responsibility for Uncharted 4: A Thief's End.
Never critical, the personable voice actor was careful to characterize the move as justifiable, from the new creative leads' perspective. He also said that he didn't know what happened behind the scenes.
"The Last of Us guys came in, and you have to understand, new producers, new people, they want to do it," he said. "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. They just wanted their own flavor. They got rid of some of the other people that were involved and just redid their thing. "
That transition had losses and gains associated with it. North cites the addition of Troy Baker as a positive contribution. The actor, who portrayed the lead character, Joel, in The Last of Us, joins the game as Nathan Drake's brother and unites arguably the two biggest actors in video games.
"It's just that they're different styles. But it's true to the story."
"Great move they made with Troy Baker who played my brother," North said. "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 good rapport."
He wasn't specific about what changed, exactly, but North said that there are tonal differences in Uncharted 4. But, again, he understands and defends it.
"The tone, I think, is going to be slightly different," he said. "It has to be, you know? You can't have … a Robert Ludlum novel is not going to be the same as Stephen King. It's just that they're different styles. But it's true to the story."
The attendee asked follow up question for clarification.
"It's going to be along the lines of the same story," North replied, saying that he's curious to see how it turns out and that he trusts Naughty Dog.
Uncharted 4: A Thief's End is scheduled for a spring 2016 release exclusively on PlayStation 4. Check out the video below to see the latest gameplay trailer. Shown during the PlayStation press conference at E3 2015, it's designed to highlight the expanded control players will have. It was impressive to watch onstage, and we got an even closer look and explanation, thanks to lead designer Kurt Margenau.