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The Evolution Of Chloe’s Design For Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

It’s been a while since we’ve seen seen the headstrong Chloe Frazer in action. The last time we saw her was in Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, which launched over five years ago. Since then a lot has changed in Chloe’s life. She’s moved up in the treasure-hunting business, taking on bigger jobs with higher risks. In the standalone expansion, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, she tackles her biggest project yet, searching India for the highly valuable Tusk of Ganesh. Naughty Dog had to reimagine Chloe for The Lost Legacy just like they did with Nathan Drake in Uncharted 4, taking into account the passage of time and showing the maturity of the character. While we visited Naughty Dog for our recent cover story, the artists and animators spoke to us about what went into Chloe’s redesign. 

For Uncharted 4, Naughty Dog’s graphics engine took the biggest overhaul, making everything look more realistic than before. The team was tasked with bringing Chloe’s design up to the standard of what was set with Uncharted 4. She was finally the lead, requiring more attention devoted to her than ever before. Since Chloe is a legacy character, who fans already have an attachment to, the design team felt extra pressure to get her just right. Chloe had to age, but she also needed to remain familiar to fans. As such, she has her iconic ponytail, but also minor signs of aging, such as crow’s feet. 

Click on image above for full size. 

“This is a character that everyone fell in love with in Uncharted 2,” says concept artist Richard Lyons. “[We asked], ‘How do we keep all those elements familiar, but bring it into a space which is more suitable for where we want our games to be?’ And we were terrified that no one was going to recognize her at the PSX demo. We were looking at so many different things, such as facial features and getting the ponytail right…even where the part [in her hair] was.” Thankfully, the audience recognized Chloe and cheered when they saw her entire face. According to Lyons, fans came up to the team afterward, saying her smokey eye makeup was a dead giveaway. 

Chloe still dresses similarly, wearing jeans and earth colors, but one thing she’s abandoned is her crop top. “We’re just trying to basically marry that relationship of Uncharted 2, which everyone goes back to, but it’s more in materials, colors, and thematic kind of traits rather than, ‘Does she have to have a crop top?’” Lyons says. The team all agreed in the eight years since Uncharted 2, Chloe’s fashion sense would have changed a bit. “You try to put yourself in her mind and think, ‘What would she be wearing now?,” Lyons says. The team made sure to keep certain standbys, right down to her pistol preference and the amount of jewelry she wears. 

In addition to up-resing the character model, all the tech upgrades from Uncharted 4 needed to be applied to Chloe, including minute details such as how sweat and dirt look on her. Animations for Chloe also had to be considered; she wouldn’t move like Nathan Drake. Chloe is shorter than Drake, so she doesn’t have the reach he does, but she also has a more elegant climbing style. Similarly, her melee combat skills are more graceful than Drake, who spent most of his time throwing haymakers. Chloe is not trained in martial arts, but because of her slight frame, she uses her knees, legs, and momentum to take down foes. 

Chloe’s appearance has certainly evolved, but so has her story in The Lost Legacy. This is Naughty Dog’s first chance to really dive into her backstory and explore why Chloe is a self-preservationist. The soul-searching journey should bring us into new territory with the character when it launches later this year on PlayStation 4. 

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The Evolution Of Chloe’s Design For Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

It’s been a while since we’ve seen seen the headstrong Chloe Frazer in action. The last time we saw her was in Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, which launched over five years ago. Since then a lot has changed in Chloe’s life. She’s moved up in the treasure-hunting business, taking on bigger jobs with higher risks. In the standalone expansion, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, she tackles her biggest project yet, searching India for the highly valuable Tusk of Ganesh. Naughty Dog had to reimagine Chloe for The Lost Legacy just like they did with Nathan Drake in Uncharted 4, taking into account the passage of time and showing the maturity of the character. While we visited Naughty Dog for our recent cover story, the artists and animators spoke to us about what went into Chloe’s redesign. 

For Uncharted 4, Naughty Dog’s graphics engine took the biggest overhaul, making everything look more realistic than before. The team was tasked with bringing Chloe’s design up to the standard of what was set with Uncharted 4. She was finally the lead, requiring more attention devoted to her than ever before. Since Chloe is a legacy character, who fans already have an attachment to, the design team felt extra pressure to get her just right. Chloe had to age, but she also needed to remain familiar to fans. As such, she has her iconic ponytail, but also minor signs of aging, such as crow’s feet. 

Click on image above for full size. 

“This is a character that everyone fell in love with in Uncharted 2,” says concept artist Richard Lyons. “[We asked], ‘How do we keep all those elements familiar, but bring it into a space which is more suitable for where we want our games to be?’ And we were terrified that no one was going to recognize her at the PSX demo. We were looking at so many different things, such as facial features and getting the ponytail right…even where the part [in her hair] was.” Thankfully, the audience recognized Chloe and cheered when they saw her entire face. According to Lyons, fans came up to the team afterward, saying her smokey eye makeup was a dead giveaway. 

Chloe still dresses similarly, wearing jeans and earth colors, but one thing she’s abandoned is her crop top. “We’re just trying to basically marry that relationship of Uncharted 2, which everyone goes back to, but it’s more in materials, colors, and thematic kind of traits rather than, ‘Does she have to have a crop top?’” Lyons says. The team all agreed in the eight years since Uncharted 2, Chloe’s fashion sense would have changed a bit. “You try to put yourself in her mind and think, ‘What would she be wearing now?,” Lyons says. The team made sure to keep certain standbys, right down to her pistol preference and the amount of jewelry she wears. 

In addition to up-resing the character model, all the tech upgrades from Uncharted 4 needed to be applied to Chloe, including minute details such as how sweat and dirt look on her. Animations for Chloe also had to be considered; she wouldn’t move like Nathan Drake. Chloe is shorter than Drake, so she doesn’t have the reach he does, but she also has a more elegant climbing style. Similarly, her melee combat skills are more graceful than Drake, who spent most of his time throwing haymakers. Chloe is not trained in martial arts, but because of her slight frame, she uses her knees, legs, and momentum to take down foes. 

Chloe’s appearance has certainly evolved, but so has her story in The Lost Legacy. This is Naughty Dog’s first chance to really dive into her backstory and explore why Chloe is a self-preservationist. The soul-searching journey should bring us into new territory with the character when it launches later this year on PlayStation 4. 

Click on the banner below to enter our hub of exclusive content that we'll be updating throughout the month.

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The Biggest Decisions Behind Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

With our cover story on Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, we offered an exclusive look at the game fans will be playing by the end of 2017. With today's update we wanted to take a look behind the scenes and talk about Naughty Dog's process of developing this stand-alone Uncharted adventure. The last time we spoke with Naughty Dog's Josh Scherr he was stepping up to become co-writer on Uncharted 4: A Thief's End. Now he has a new writing partner for Unhcharted: The Lost Legacy through the game's creative director Shaun Escayg. In this interview, Scherr talks about the development history of the new game, why they chose Chloe as the protagonist, and why (even after all of these years) it's still very hard to make an Uncharted game.

Watch the interview below to learn more about Naughty Dog's process of developing Uncharted: The Lost Legacy.

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Six Ways Uncharted: The Lost Legacy Changes Things Up For The Series

Although Nathan Drake's story was wrapped up in Uncharted 4, Naughty Dog revealed at last year's PSX that it wasn't entirely done with the series' universe. Chloe Frazer, a fan-favorite treasure hunter that we last saw in Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception, now takes center stage with mercenary Nadine Ross by her side. Taking place six months to a year after the previous Uncharted, Chloe and Nadine team up in search of an ancient treasure in India. Much is different this time around, with a grittier and more grounded narrative, but many elements you've come to love in Uncharted will still be present. 

Here are several ways Uncharted: The Lost Legacy changes things up with a new setting, more grounded storyline, bigger environments, and more.

A New Duo of Thieves
The series moves away from Nathan Drake for the first time, and the team saw room to explore this universe further with a pair of familiar faces: Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross. Chloe is the playable protagonist, and the two must overcome their differences in order to achieve their goal. Chloe leads the way, and has moved up in the treasure hunting business, coming into her own and returning to India in search of a treasure called the Tusk of Ganesh. She enlists mercenary Nadine, who we met in Uncharted 4, because of her particular skill set. The conflict between the two, and how that relationship unfolds, is a big part of what The Lost Legacy is about.

A Personal Setting
Chloe is half Australian and half Indian, and we learn about her Indian roots in this stand-alone entry. "The setting of the game has a personal connection with [Chloe]'s background, and it adds like a certain depth to everything you’re doing in that environment. It has more meaning for her," Uncharted writer Josh Scherr says. In a short demo we saw during our trip to Naughty Dog, Chloe and Nadine approach a large waterfall sided with two grandiose elephant statues. It's clear that these monuments hold meaning to Chloe as Nadine makes a quip about how Chloe should take a photo for her father. The treasure the two search for is also significant to Chloe, and their journey ties into mystical stories relating to Hindu gods that were told to her as bedtime stories when she was young.

Bigger Environments
Uncharted 4's Madagascar was one of the larger locales in Uncharted 4, giving players more freedom. The Lost Legacy further expands these open environments, all the while telling a linear story. In The Lost Legacy, Chloe and Nadine travel to the Western Ghats, a rural mountain range in India they traverse by jeep. It's reminiscent of Madagascar in the way that there are different terrains of mud, water, and rocks, along with a stunning vista. A key difference is the Western Ghats is geographically larger than Madagascar, and the biggest environment the series has seen yet. "We have this really great location of these rural Western Ghats, that allows us to get a real, true sense of exploration kind of unlike anything we’ve done before where the level design isn’t directing you exactly where to go, and you’re free to explore, find things, and discover things," game director Kurt Margenau says.

Meet Antagonist Asav
A new Uncharted entry also means a new central enemy. In The Lost Legacy you'll meet Asav, a barrel-chested insurgent rebel leader who formally worked for the government. He's unearthing treasures, artifacts, and murals that are culturally significant to the region, and has several reasons behind his actions. "He has history with the government, he feels left out in solving the conflicts the government solved at one point and he’s now a lone rebel trying to create war and profit from it," creative director Shaun Escayg says. Asav believes in his cause, but Naughty Dog reminds us that this is a world of thieves; everyone is looking out for themselves, and this can make for morally grey characters despite their motivations. It's also a small world of thieves – just like how Nadine and Sully happened to know each other, Nadine has a similar connection to Asav, who she has worked with in the past.

A Condensed Story
Because it is a stand-alone game, The Lost Legacy will be more condensed. It's longer than The Last of Us DLC Left Behind but shorter than Uncharted 4. While The Lost Legacy will still have those enormous set pieces and grandiose moments Uncharted is known for, it's still a smaller scale Uncharted experience. Naughty made it clear that this is a new game, and not an expansion of Uncharted 4. It was a way for the team to look at the series' universe from a new perspective. "This is something we can do completely independently while still in the same universe with the same characters, and exploring new relationships with them," Scherr says.

Gameplay Tweaks 
The Lost Legacy will feature all the pillars of Uncharted, from rope swinging to puzzle-solving, but there are smaller changes worth noting. Stealth has been an option in several Uncharted entries, but Uncharted 4 built on this idea further with sections of tall grass and awareness meters for enemies. This comes back in The Lost Legacy, with even more stealth capabilities. For the first time, you can equip a silent pistol to kill foes from afar. As for combat, Chloe has a more martial arts vibe to her fighting moves, whereas Nathan was more of a brawler. 

When working as a team, Chloe and Nadine are similar to Nathan and Sam. Nadine can mark enemies for you so you can spot them quicker, and she'll help you out in combat. If you don't want to fight, sometimes that's also an option. During the Western Ghats demo we saw, it was possible to evade conflict completely while in the jeep, by driving by and ignoring hostile areas. Furthermore, a lockpicking mini-game is introduced, which we briefly saw in action during the PSX demo where Chloe lockpicks a door. Several crates lying around will only open following this short minigame, where you rotate the lock and wait for your controller to vibrate.

To find out more about Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, check out our cover reveal here or click the banner below to peruse our growing hub of exclusive content.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Six Ways Uncharted: The Lost Legacy Changes Things Up For The Series

Although Nathan Drake's story was wrapped up in Uncharted 4, Naughty Dog revealed at last year's PSX that it wasn't entirely done with the series' universe. Chloe Frazer, a fan-favorite treasure hunter that we last saw in Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception, now takes center stage with mercenary Nadine Ross by her side. Taking place six months to a year after the previous Uncharted, Chloe and Nadine team up in search of an ancient treasure in India. Much is different this time around, with a grittier and more grounded narrative, but many elements you've come to love in Uncharted will still be present. 

Here are several ways Uncharted: The Lost Legacy changes things up with a new setting, more grounded storyline, bigger environments, and more.

A New Duo of Thieves
The series moves away from Nathan Drake for the first time, and the team saw room to explore this universe further with a pair of familiar faces: Chloe Frazer and Nadine Ross. Chloe is the playable protagonist, and the two must overcome their differences in order to achieve their goal. Chloe leads the way, and has moved up in the treasure hunting business, coming into her own and returning to India in search of a treasure called the Tusk of Ganesh. She enlists mercenary Nadine, who we met in Uncharted 4, because of her particular skill set. The conflict between the two, and how that relationship unfolds, is a big part of what The Lost Legacy is about.

A Personal Setting
Chloe is half Australian and half Indian, and we learn about her Indian roots in this stand-alone entry. "The setting of the game has a personal connection with [Chloe]'s background, and it adds like a certain depth to everything you’re doing in that environment. It has more meaning for her," Uncharted writer Josh Scherr says. In a short demo we saw during our trip to Naughty Dog, Chloe and Nadine approach a large waterfall sided with two grandiose elephant statues. It's clear that these monuments hold meaning to Chloe as Nadine makes a quip about how Chloe should take a photo for her father. The treasure the two search for is also significant to Chloe, and their journey ties into mystical stories relating to Hindu gods that were told to her as bedtime stories when she was young.

Bigger Environments
Uncharted 4's Madagascar was one of the larger locales in Uncharted 4, giving players more freedom. The Lost Legacy further expands these open environments, all the while telling a linear story. In The Lost Legacy, Chloe and Nadine travel to the Western Ghats, a rural mountain range in India they traverse by jeep. It's reminiscent of Madagascar in the way that there are different terrains of mud, water, and rocks, along with a stunning vista. A key difference is the Western Ghats is geographically larger than Madagascar, and the biggest environment the series has seen yet. "We have this really great location of these rural Western Ghats, that allows us to get a real, true sense of exploration kind of unlike anything we’ve done before where the level design isn’t directing you exactly where to go, and you’re free to explore, find things, and discover things," game director Kurt Margenau says.

Meet Antagonist Asav
A new Uncharted entry also means a new central enemy. In The Lost Legacy you'll meet Asav, a barrel-chested insurgent rebel leader who formally worked for the government. He's unearthing treasures, artifacts, and murals that are culturally significant to the region, and has several reasons behind his actions. "He has history with the government, he feels left out in solving the conflicts the government solved at one point and he’s now a lone rebel trying to create war and profit from it," creative director Shaun Escayg says. Asav believes in his cause, but Naughty Dog reminds us that this is a world of thieves; everyone is looking out for themselves, and this can make for morally grey characters despite their motivations. It's also a small world of thieves – just like how Nadine and Sully happened to know each other, Nadine has a similar connection to Asav, who she has worked with in the past.

A Condensed Story
Because it is a stand-alone game, The Lost Legacy will be more condensed. It's longer than The Last of Us DLC Left Behind but shorter than Uncharted 4. While The Lost Legacy will still have those enormous set pieces and grandiose moments Uncharted is known for, it's still a smaller scale Uncharted experience. Naughty made it clear that this is a new game, and not an expansion of Uncharted 4. It was a way for the team to look at the series' universe from a new perspective. "This is something we can do completely independently while still in the same universe with the same characters, and exploring new relationships with them," Scherr says.

Gameplay Tweaks 
The Lost Legacy will feature all the pillars of Uncharted, from rope swinging to puzzle-solving, but there are smaller changes worth noting. Stealth has been an option in several Uncharted entries, but Uncharted 4 built on this idea further with sections of tall grass and awareness meters for enemies. This comes back in The Lost Legacy, with even more stealth capabilities. For the first time, you can equip a silent pistol to kill foes from afar. As for combat, Chloe has a more martial arts vibe to her fighting moves, whereas Nathan was more of a brawler. 

When working as a team, Chloe and Nadine are similar to Nathan and Sam. Nadine can mark enemies for you so you can spot them quicker, and she'll help you out in combat. If you don't want to fight, sometimes that's also an option. During the Western Ghats demo we saw, it was possible to evade conflict completely while in the jeep, by driving by and ignoring hostile areas. Furthermore, a lockpicking mini-game is introduced, which we briefly saw in action during the PSX demo where Chloe lockpicks a door. Several crates lying around will only open following this short minigame, where you rotate the lock and wait for your controller to vibrate.

To find out more about Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, check out our cover reveal here or click the banner below to peruse our growing hub of exclusive content.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

GI Show – Uncharted: The Lost Legacy Impressions, Nier, Zelda Roundtable

Welcome back to another episode of The Game Informer Show! On this week's podcast, Kimberley Wallace Elise Favis share new impressions of visiting Naughty Dog and checking out Uncharted: The Lost Legacy for our new cover story. Then we're joined by Javy Gwaltney to break down Middle-earth: Shadow of War and the rest of GDC 2017 experience. After that, Brian Shea explains the Nintendo Switch's Super Bomberman R and Joe Juba tells us why Nier: Automata is worth a look. After some great community emails, we have a six-person roundtable to discuss the first few hours of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. We swap stories of our unique experiences in the beginning of the game and see how each of us fared with the various puzzles.

You can watch the video below, subscribe and listen to the audio on iTunes or Google Play, or listen to episode 338 on SoundCloud. Also, be sure to send your questions to [email protected] for a chance to have them answered on the show and win a prize by becoming Email of the Week!

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Our thanks to the talented Super Marcato Bros. for The Game Informer Show's intro song. You can hear more of their original tunes and awesome video game music podcast at their website.

To jump to a particular point in the discussion, check out the time stamps below…

1:40 – Uncharted: The Lost Legacy
12:50 – GDC 2017
34:18 – Super Bomberman R
40:40 – Nier: Automata
53:33 - Community emails
1:36:11 – Zelda: Breath of the Wild roundtable

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The Virtual Life – Fathers, Video Games, And The Long Road To Legacy

What is there to say about my father and I? Lots, I suppose. Son of a war veteran, he spent a lot of his time being shuffled around the country as military brat, never staying in one place for too long. In the '80s, he was in Florida, trying to break the high scores on all the arcade machines. My parents met when my mother disconnected the Ms. Pac-Man cabinet so he would stop playing and give the kids behind him a turn.

I exist because of Ms. Pac-Man. What a thing.

Anyway.

We’re both men with ridiculous names. He’s Javy Rudolph Gwaltney the Third. I’m The Fourth. I often find myself telling strangers and new acquaintances that there won’t be a Fifth. I come from a line of men who have fought in wars, who developed chess software, who provided for the people they loved. My father wanted to settle down in a small town and build a stationary life for his family.

I want the world and I’ll have it, one word at a time.

Noctis Lucis Caelum. It’s easy to make fun of you, sad rich boy with a ludicrous name. Always riding in the backseat. Always pouting. Always whining. Always. Privileged. Surrounded by people he loves. About to marry a lovely woman. Can’t you just be happy?

But there’s something more there, isn’t there? A throne taken away from you. Father slain. All you have left is a car, some friends, and a shadow looming over you. You feel the weight of destiny on you. You can do great things. That’s what you’ve been told all your life and now you have to prove it. Earn your legacy.

Dad and I, we hardly ever see eye to eye on things. He believes there’s a man in the sky who ushered the world into being and that this man’s son will save those who believe in him from fire and agony. I see the void stretched over the entirety of existence with people trying to make something out of nothing and find love and meaning in one another. He pans for gold in rivers and shoots pistols at the range for fun. Me? I’m good with a book and a recliner. We haven’t talked politics in over a decade, which is for the best.

Differences aside, the man’s always been good to me. I remember being very young and telling him that I wanted to be a writer, and there was this look in his eyes like "oh son, no, anything but that." And then he told me it was a very hard business, writing, and that most people don’t do well with it but that he had my back if that’s what I really wanted.

And he did. I never paid a dime for college. He helped with bills when times were rough. He yelled in joy over the phone when I told him I was writing for Playboy. I’ve known a lot of men who spent their time trying to shape their sons to become modern version of themselves. Men who wanted their boys to grow up to be religious people who raised a family in the same town, who went to work at financial offices or ran businesses out of their homes, who never dared risk traveling beyond the borders of their own state. These are men who wanted a legacy in its most selfish, horrifying form: they wanted to see themselves continue in another vessel.

Dad could have easily been that sort of person, could have told me there was only one way to be in life and enforced that. Instead, he encouraged me to become the person I wanted to be. He told me to take glimpses at the world that existed beyond the city limits, bought for me controversial books that I wanted to read, let me embrace my own interests instead of trying to make me love his.

It took me years to realize that was a gift.

Marcus Fenix just wanted what was best for his son. Boy never listened, went and got himself in heap of familiar, bloody trouble. Should have known that was gonna happen—insubordination, it’s in the blood, after all. Now he has to pull JD’s ass out of the fire.

But hey, that’s what fathers are for, right?

In a way, my father doomed me to all of this: this whole video game business. He was really into it when I was a child. We spent hours playing Warcraft 2, X-Wing, DOOM, the works. Eventually his interest in games waned as they became more complicated. Mine didn’t. I dove headlong into video games. I bought subscriptions to PC Gamer, Gamepro, and Game Informer (oh hi there).

My dad bought us a gaming PC in 1998. I remember spending an entire summer helping him build a bathroom just so I could earn enough money for both Half-Life and Half-life Opposing Force. Over dinner I would talk his head off about planning starship battles in Homeworld or going back in time in The Journeyman Project. I talked sci-fi specifically because it was the one constant he and I have and will always have: a love for imagining what’s out there, what monsters and hopes sit on the far reaches of our comprehension.

During the late '90s my mother was working on getting her nursing degree. This meant that the weekends were basically me, my brother, and my father sitting in our living room and feasting on pizza as we watched Laserdiscs of Star Wars, Blade Runner, The Terminator, Mortal Kombat, Twister (look, he really liked watching that CGI cow fly by, ok?).

The things that would eventually become the corner stone of my professional life were born here in these moments, with men slamming triangles of cheese and meat into their mouth and guzzling soda while the post-apocalypse played out in a startling number of ways on a dusty television set well into the night.

This is where I come from.


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