Frank Tzeng, Lead Character Artist of Uncharted 4 at Naughty Dog explains how “quality is everything” for the studio and how this affects his work.
Quality is everything in Uncharted 4
"I love Naughty Dog. Naughty Dog gave me a lot of freedom to create the character that I wanted to do, and we value quality so much that we are willing to sacrifice a lot of stuff to just get whatever we want.
So, if I show you a character, this character may not just have been done once. Maybe he got approved three times, four times, but we just go back and keep changing him because we just want to get that perfection down that we wanted to get.
This is how Naughty Dog works. Quality basically is everything to us. It’s very important stuff. That enables me to practice more and more, and just get some really good stuff going on".
Even if we already know the attention to detail and quality that Naughty Dog is capable of, it's good to know that the same holds true for the latest iteration in the Uncharted series. Helmed by creative director Neil Druckmann and game director Bruce Straley, Uncharted 4 could very well become the crowning achievement of the franchise. Judging from the duo's impeccable work on The Last of Us, one of the most highly acclaimed games of all time, there is absolutely no doubt that we will be getting one of the greatest gaming experiences the industry has ever seen.
What we saw of Uncharted 4 looked Incredible
During the Playstation Experience we witnessed a 15-minute gameplay demo of the game and it was mind-blowing. Breathtakingly beautiful vistas and amazing level design, coupled with truly great gameplay and genre innovating advancements. There was a particular moment that literally blew my mind, where Drake jumped to an enemy below, punched him on the face and then grabbed his falling gun and shot a second enemy on the ledge above. That was truly some really dynamic gameplay.
Tzeng, continues on the importance of teamwork
"This is all teamwork. I cannot do it by myself. I have a really good team by myself. We have a really good shader artist, we have a lot of talented character artists. It’s all teamwork. I don’t want to take all the credit by myself, because everything we do… For example, this one, even though I did the model, I did the eyebrow… all the stuff… the shader has been made by the shader artist. Without the shader this model would never look like this, so it’s all team effort.
My part, texturing, sculpting, modeling, is only a part of it. In the game industry it’s all teamwork."
At closing, he mentioned the importance of subtle changes,
"This is basically the same work that I do at Naughty Dog as well. In order to achieve the feeling that we want, it’s all about subtle changes. All the subtle changes added can change the whole character".
There is no doubt that the Uncharted series remains one of the most beloved gaming franchises in the industry and millions of people look forward to the release of Uncharted 4. Combining great gameplay with truly interesting characters, for which you really get to care about, some very interesting story telling coupled with excellent voice work and motion capture, provides some incredibly moving experiences.
There is no release date for Uncharted 4 yet, but we will surely have an announcement at E3 later this year. A fall 2015 release is very likely, as there was confirmation that the game is indeed coming out this year. Given how many games get delayed lately, lets just hope that this remains true and Naughty Dog brings us Uncharted 4 so that we get to experience what is probably going to be a breathtaking gaming experience, soon enough.