Uncharted: 10 Crazy Things You Didn’t Know About Nathan Drake

Very few characters are as closely associated with the PlayStation brand as Nathan Drake. The affable, adventure-loving treasure hunter has starred in five of his own mainline games. That’s more than Solid Snake from Metal Gear, second only to Kratos of God of War fame. Drake has featured in a mobile game, a card game, and even in comic books, too.

RELATED: Every Uncharted Game Ranked From Worst To Best (According To Metacritic)

Yet there may be a few facts about Mr. Drake that even dedicated hardcore followers of the series don’t know. While some say that he isn’t all the deep, there has always been more than a bit of mystery about the man and things he kept to himself. Some were even surprises to his wife, Elena Fisher, along their journeys together.

10 His Original Design Was Based On Johnny Knoxville

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Nathan Drake looked like Johnny Knoxville early drawing

Nathan Drake’s appearance is almost as familiar to PlayStation fans as his name. For instance, the shoulder holsters, the jeans, the shirt, and the messy hair. But his face didn’t always look the way that gamers know it to appear now.

In the original design stages, character artists imagined him with Johnny Knoxville in mind. Lead designer Richard Lemarchand said in an interview that artists targeted Knoxville because he exuded a “coolness and goodness” that Naughty Dog also wanted Nathan Drake to exemplify.

9 He May Not Be Related To Francis Drake

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Nathan Drake with Francis Drake's Body in Uncharted 1

Despite the identical surname, Nathan Drake’s claim to direct lineage with Sir Francis Drake is never conclusively proven. In fact, Drake is not even Nate’s real last name. Early in Uncharted 4, it is revealed that his original last name is Morgan. This also explained the origin of the last name “Drake”.

RELATED: Uncharted: 5 Ways It Gets History Right (& 5 Huge Mistakes We Can’t Believe They Made)

Nate and Sam lived in an orphanage after their mother’s death. One night they broke into a house looking for her belongings which had been sold. After nearly being arrested, they decided to start new lives and change their last name to Drake. They chose the name to honor their mother who had been researching Sir Francis Drake and his exploits.

8 He’s A Playable Character In PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale

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Nathan Drake Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale

In an effort to capitalize on the Super Smash Brothers craze, Sony created their own character-based beat ’em up for the PS3 in 2012. Various characters from all around the ecosystem were brought into the game.

Drake was one of the more useful characters as he featured a litany of firearms and powerful explosive attacks that can do serious damage to the other three characters unlucky enough to match up with him on a given stage. Sony even incorporated Nate’s famous journal into one of the animated intros that play prior to the start of a new round.

7 He’s An ESTP On The Myers-Briggs Personality Test

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The MBTI® personality test is popular around the world for giving people an insight into why they do what they do. Various sites categorize many gaming characters and Drake usually scores as an ESTP. According to the Myers & Briggs Foundation, a person with ESTP (Extroverted, Observant, Thinking, Prospecting) personality is flexible and focused on immediate results.

RELATED: The MBTI® Of The Last Of Us Characters

Bored by theories, these people tend to prefer to be in action at all times energetically working on the issue at hand. They are always in-the-moment, enjoying things as they happen, and they learn best through actually doing tasks. Sounds quite a bit like the Nathan Drake known to PlayStation fans around the world.

6 He Was Originally Going To Fight His Brother In Uncharted 4

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A screenshot from the game, featuring the Drake brothers

Nate’s brother Sam came back into his life at the beginning of the game after many years apart. There was a bit of awkwardness at first, but they quickly overcame it to work together. It wasn’t always planned that way though.

In an interview done after she left Naughty Dog, the game’s original director, Amy Hennig, said she intended Sam to be an antagonist in the story and not a friend. Hennig revealed that Sam returning would have been more like an antagonistic confrontation to reconciliation story. Seems like Nate and Sam really dodged a bullet there.

5 Some People Consider Him A Mass Murderer

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Uncharted 4 Nate Drake fighting Shoreline member

There’s no denying that Nathan Drake has killed thousands of adversaries during his globe-trotting adventures. What is up for discussion are his motivations for doing so. Much virtual ink has been spilled discussing the possibilities during the 14+ years since the first game released.

Drake has shown little compunction in dispatching the foot soldiers that stand in his way, but it can be argued he was doing so in self-defense. Many times, those pirates or paramilitary soldiers were actually trying to kill him. However, Nate did dispatch some without them ever being aware of his presence. Many have opined that Nate is, at best, a greedy treasure hunter who lets nothing stand in the way of a score. At worst, he is a psychopathic killer who will whatever needs doing to get what he wants.

4 He Doesn’t Know Video Game Pirate History

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Nathan Drake picture of pirate captain Guybrush Threepwood

In the middle chapters of Uncharted 4, Nate and Sam are trying to solve a puzzle involving portraits of pirate captains. There is one, however, that neither of them can identify. One of the game’s Easter Eggs features a pirate who is none other than Guybrush Threepwood of Monkey Island fame.

RELATED: Uncharted: The 10 Best Villains In The Series, Ranked

The star of the Lucasarts series of point and click pirate adventures, Threepwood was actually trying to become a pirate with oft-hilarious results. We know Nate wasn’t much of a gamer based on his experience with Crash Bandicoot at the beginning of the game. So it shouldn’t be surprising that he didn’t recognize Threepwood.

3 He’s Afraid Of Clowns

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Nate and Elena talking at end of Uncharted 2

It’s easy to think that a man like Nathan Drake is afraid of nothing. Always jumping into danger, escaping burning buildings, and taking on bad guys requires a lot of courage. But at the end of Uncharted 2, the story’s hero reveals that it’s actually clowns that give him the creeps.

As Nate and Elena snuggle after surviving their adventure in Shambala, she asks him how scared he was that she was dead. Nate casually responds by saying he was just a 4. Incredulous, she asks what a 10 would be, at which point he reveals that clowns are the worst for him. Go figure.

2 He Nearly Had A Son Instead Of A Daughter

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Nathan Drake Elena Drake Cassie Drake Uncharted 4 Epilogue

In an interview with Destructoid after the release of Uncharted 4, the game’s co-director, Neil Druckmann, revealed that he initially wrote the epilogue with Nate’s son. Druckmann confessed that, when showcasing new characters to concept artists, he doesn’t often think about gender as being important.

But the lead concept artist usually fires back with the question “What if it was a girl?” In most cases, Druckmann said that he usually goes “oh yeah cool” and then, providing the story allows for it, will move forward with the suggestions. Thus, Cassie Drake, and the epilogue we all played, were born.

1 He Might Actually Be Dead

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Nathan Drake head wound unconscious

The Internet and conspiracy theories go together like peanut butter and jelly. Video games are no exception and this one is pretty compelling. An excellent deep dive into the entire theory suggests tons of supporting evidence to back it up. In the second half of Uncharted 4, Drake falls off a cliff and hits his head on a rock; as the theory goes, this actually results in his death. When he regains consciousness in the game, things are very different from before.

Elena and Sully have somehow found exactly where the brothers are and everything from that point on goes miraculously right. The theory states that the player is experiencing Nate’s afterlife where nothing bad happens, Elena is no longer angry with him, and she is even happy to be on an adventure together. Then, the epilogue is actually Nate’s version of heaven with a happy family and a home on a beautiful beach. Could it be true? Sometimes, truth really is stranger than fiction.

NEXT: The 4 Best Endings To PS4 Action Games (& The 4 Worst)

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