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Uncharted 4 DLC Balloons Into Full Game, The Lost Legacy

Uncharted: The Lost LegacyThe previously announced single-player expansion to Naughty Dog's hit Uncharted 4: A Thief's End has ballooned up so much that it's become a stand-alone release that does not require Uncharted 4 to play.  Subtitled The Lost Legacy and starring Uncharted 2's Chloe Frazer, this new chapter in the Uncharted story is due to release August 22 for the Sony PlayStation 4 at a price of $39.99 as announced this morning by the PlayStation Blog.

In December we said that we’re approaching this project as a true Uncharted game — complete with its own deep narrative with complex character development, all-new destinations, refined gameplay, and blockbuster cinematic moments. We’re especially excited to have Chloe as our new protagonist and explore more of her story as she and Nadine venture across India in search of the fabled Tusk of Ganesh.

I trust Naughty Dog, but let's be clear here.  At $40 and functioning as a separate work, this is not DLC for Uncharted 4.  This is a new game built off the back of Uncharted 4 which, assuming its  narrative and length hold up, is priced accordingly.  Perhaps Naughty Dog and Sony sense your sticker shock because the two are offering bonus material for those who preorder the game.  Preordering the physical release comes with the downloadable PS4 version of the PS2 adventure Jak & Daxter: The Precursor Legacy.  Preordering the downloadable version of Lost Legacy from the PlayStation Store also includes a new Uncharted theme. 

Two games for $40 is easier to swallow, although if I were Sony, I would play up the notion that this is a new Uncharted title and distance myself from the idea that this is "just" DLC.  If anything, Lost Legacy sounds like it's headed down the road of Ratchet & Clank: Quest For Booty or inFamous: First Light in that it's a stand-alone mini-sequel created using the underlying technology of the previous main game in the series.  There's nothing wrong with that, but the messaging is important to prevent turning away players who would balk at $40 DLC, but would embrace a $40 complete title.