The PlayStation brand has thrived on its first-party IPs over the years, and there's no doubt that Uncharted has proven its worth time and time again.
One could even make the argument that without it, the PS3 would never have caught up to the Xbox 360 last generation. Drake's Fortune launched at a time when PS3 was still struggling and the sequel – the super hyped Among Thieves – solidified the franchise as a critical and financial force. As an exclusive series, it was absolutely invaluable.
I'm just wondering if that importance has waned a bit. I'm sure next year's A Thief's End will be a massive title for PS4 and yeah, I do think the system needs it. I don't, however, think Uncharted has the same pull and influence it had last generation. Perhaps it's because open-world and sandbox structures are now ruling the roost and despite the added freedom in Uncharted 4 , it'll still be mostly linear. I think the gaming community expressed its sudden hatred of linear adventures with The Order: 1886 .
This new generation might see the rise of another new exclusive IP. Perhaps it'll be Horizon: Zero Dawn , the Guerrilla Games RPG that blew us all away at E3. Freshness is always key in any new era and regardless of the countless awards Uncharted titles have won, even the best franchises can get a little stale. Don't get me wrong; I don't think Naughty Dog's IP is stale at all. I'm merely speaking of general consumer perspective.
Besides, PS4 seems to be doing just fine in spite of a lack of exclusives. I often wonder if Uncharted 4 will even generate a significant hardware sales spike, especially with the knowledge that so many series fans already own the console. Guess we'll have to wait and see.