Naughty Dog big cheese Evan Wells has named Fumito Ueda’s 'boy meets girl' classic ICO as a major influence for the studio, letting slip that the developer is currently in the process of working on a similar “linear, narrative-driven experience” for its next project.
Wells was speaking in light of news that Uncharted 2: Among Thieves was named the greatest PlayStation game ever created by readers of Official PlayStation Magazine, where he admitted he wouldn’t have picked the treasure-hunting exploits of Nathan Drake as his personal number one.
Instead, the Naughty Dog dev would have reserved that spot for either Grand Theft Auto III or ICO: "They're pretty different games, but they've both influenced the industry tremendously, he said.
In fact, Wells went on to add that Naughty Dog’s current project shares some design similarities with Ueda-san’s critically acclaimed PS2 outing: "[ICO's] the kind of game - that linear, narrative-driven experience - that we're focused on making right now," he teased.
"Everyone in the office has been influenced by it greatly; it's just a fantastic game."
Wells went on to add that although costing an arm and a leg, he feels that story-driven videogames are the way forward: "[Story-driven games] are very difficult and costly, but I hope people are now realising how story can really elevate the gaming experience."
So PSU readers, Naughty Dog’s cobbling together a “linear, narrative-driven experience” for its next project – what could it be? No prizes for guessing, but feel free to speculate away in the comments section below.