Naughty Dog has since acknowledged its error and updated the trailer, describing the situation as “a regrettable mistake.”
Ubisoft Montreal employee Azaïzia Aymar first noted the similarity between a painting featured in the Uncharted 4 trailer and concept art from Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag earlier today. Members of gaming forum NeoGAF corroborated the claim, noting that the image in question is a near-complete copy of a specific piece of Black Flag pre-production art, minus a few key details.
The trailer was subsequently pulled from YouTube, and an updated version without the Black Flag art was uploaded in its place. The team at Naughty Dog afterward addressed the situation in a post at its official blog, acknowledging that the artwork was not properly vetted before today’s trailer launch.
“In our eagerness to get the story trailer out we made a regrettable mistake and didn’t thoroughly vet the art work used for an in game painting,” Naughty Dog explains. “We’ve already updated the trailer. We hold all artistry in high regard and take full responsibility for having allowed this to happen.”
The studio continued: “We want to sincerely apologize to everyone at Ubisoft, the Assassin’s Creed team, the original artist, and our fans.”
Naughty Dog found itself in a similar position in 2013 when cartographer Cameron Booth accused the developer of lifting a Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority map for its post-apocalyptic action game The Last of Us without permission. The developer later apologized for the oversight, and Booth afterward stated that “it seems as if matters will be resolved to everyone’s satisfaction.”
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End launches exclusively for the PlayStation 4 on April 26.