Naughty Dog To Use Existing Uncharted Engine For PS4

The Last Of Us looks and feels like it’s running on an updated, tweaked version of the engine used in Uncharted. Because it almost certainly is. And sensibly, developers Naughty Dog will be keeping the existing engine for their PS4 game development.

Picked up by Digital Spy, game director Bruce Straley has said that the team “learned a big lesson coming from PS2 to PS3,” and won’t be repeating past mistakes of developing a new engine from scratch.

“There was a lot of hype over what next-gen was going to be,” Straley added. “It was all going to be like movies, like a pre-rendered cutscene-style fidelity.”

“That turned out not to be true. Granted, what we’re able to do now is pretty damn close, but it took Naughty Dog four games to get there – one of the top developers in the industry with some on the most amazing scientists working in our programming department.”

Straley also mentioned not having a development kit soon enough.

“We scrapped everything at the beginning of Uncharted 1, and we had a perfectly good engine with the Jak & Daxter franchise. We could have started with something there and then built off of it and only changed the pieces and parts as we needed, when we needed.”

“And that really caused a lot of turmoil.”

The team’s The Last Of Us releases in two weeks. We’ll have our full review of everything about the game up on the 5th.

After that, it’s straight onto currently unannounced PS4 games. “As we move into development into next-gen, we want to take our current engine, port it immediately over as is and say, ‘Okay, we have a great AI system, we have a good rendering system'”.



  1. Something we’ve also seen with Killzone: Shadow Fall, where they were able to quickly reassign the various parts of the engine across, before adding further effects on top.

    Given how mature the current ND Engine is, I don’t think it really wants a whole new rewrite anyway. What is there has been very well refined and honed to current gen, but should also scale up very well as they’ve been able to include some rather tasty effects.

    They haven’t really hit that dead end which people feel Call of Duty did, or how EA launched a new cross-game engine for sports games. So plenty of leeway to shift straight into game creation.

    Obviously, there’s nothing stopping them from reworking big core chunks of the engine, or scrapping it entirely, if they feel that they need to do so for their second or third PS4 game.

    • Agreed, fella. When you see what the engine is capable of (with regards to it’s own core output and how it handles everything else they throw at it), you can’t help but think it’ll scale beautifully well and allow for higher polygon counts, better textures and some whizzbang™ effects that we’re not used to on the PS3 generation.

    • If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

      • Then again look at Call Of Duty; 6 games that are practically all the same. If it isn’t broke, don’x fix it, but don’t overuse it either! :P

    • Potentially massive spoiler below!
      Don’t read the next comment!
      Hopefully this gets removed quickly…
      Well, it’s too late for me now…

      • Can we have a whip ’round to have you euthanised? :P

      • Dealt with, Kerash. :-)

      • I’ve killed the comment without reading it. I don’t want it spoiled for myself or anyone else.

        Apologies if it was a joke comment or something equally innocent.

        But be warned that if someone wants to make a habit of spoiling games for people, they will no longer be welcome on the site.

      • Good man! I managed to stop after reading the 2nd word.

      • I read the first two words on the other article – he left the same comment their. Ban him off the site I’d say. His join date signifies that he’s signed up purely to post these spoilers – whether they are true or not.

      • I’m glad I didn’t see it, only typed a response a few minutes before.

      • Thanks for dealing with it. I took the bullet for the team. :P

      • Well I say I read about 2 words but in some strange autistic kinda way I kind of saw the rest too but it can hopefully be erased from my memory if I drink enough alcohol tonight.
        But… You did well.

    • Agreed, and ND update their engine for every new game anyway. This allows them to hit the ground running.

  2. This could confirm that they are going to do a PS4 UC game due to the engine being best suited to it as i think they prefer to build one from scratch or modify an existing one when it comes to new IP. If they do UC4, for the love of god, don’t chuck that amount of set pieces at us again. The boat level was there just because. The plot could have moved on without it. Have one set piece split over several levels like the train in UC2 instead of several short and whilst they were good, some felt like they were there because ND just wanted to show off. Bad dog. But I am looking forward to seeing what ND will pump out with the UC engine. Hopefully, not UC:Karting as drake would destroy the track whilst taking on a private army. :O

    • You don’t know if it’s best suited to it, you’ll have to try The Last Of Us before making any judgement!

      • Wait I’ve read your opening sentence wrong, ignore me.

      • You are dead to me for misreading my comment! :P

  3. Good move.If this means they can spend more resources on the games themselves, ie putting in more in way of new ideas, concepts etc, than spending inital development period just getting the engine working on newer hardware, than i’m all for it.

    Nothing i saw in Unreal 4 Engine demo, nor the new Crytek engine demo.blew me away, just seemed to be about more particle effects, better lighting and lens flare, so don’t feel Naughty Dog are under any real pressure to come up with a new engine just yet.

    Besides, Bungie used a moddified Halo 2 engine for 360 Halo 3 did’nt they? was’nt until Reach Halo had a total revamp of the engine was it?.

  4. I for one hope to see loads more ND games on PS4. Not necessarily Uncharted though.

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