Uncharted 3: Drake’s deception Review

Posted: November 8, 2011 by Tony Polanco in REVIEWS

You would think that writing a review for a game as exceptional as Naughty Dog studio’s latest; Uncharted 3: Drake’s deception would be easy but that is not exactly true. Like Uncharted 2: Among thieves before it, Drake’s deception is another benchmark title that all other action adventure video games should aspire to be like. While admittedly, the game doesn’t really break new ground or have the same impact that its predecessor did, Drake’s deception still easily bests any action/adventure game to be released since Uncharted 2 and I suspect will not be bested until the next Uncharted game. It’s hard to do justice to a game of this caliber with words but because it is so incredible it MUST be spoken of.

Instead of breaking down all of Uncharted 3’s mechanics (which are rock solid and highly enjoyable) I want to focus more on the experience that the game provides. It would be a disservice to talk about Uncharted 3 as if it were just another run of the mill video game. It is so much more than this. Uncharted 3 has the perfect balance of various gameplay types (cover based gun combat, platforming, puzzle solving ect) with cinematic prowess and superb writing. This is a game that makes a good case that video games are not only as good as any Hollywood action film but can actually surpass them. While it’s exhilarating to watch intense gun fights and death defying acrobatics on screen it’s a whole different thing to actually be a part of them and have complete control during such sequences. Uncharted 3, like Uncharted 2 before it, puts you in the middle of the action like no movie or television show can.

Like all great narratives, Uncharted 3’s awe-inspiring set pieces and over the top action sequences would be nothing without a compelling story and most importantly of all, memorable characters to drive it all forward. Series star Nathan Drake is once again on the hunt for a treasure filled mystical lost city. The place he’s after is tantalizingly called “The Atlantis of the sands” and is a city that the famous T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) once tried to find. Nathan’s journey ultimately takes him to the Arabian desert but the game has several other places that our favorite treasure hunter/tomb raider visits along the way. Each locale is wonderfully realized and thanks to the amazing graphics, make you feel as if you are actually there.

What is most appealing about this latest chapter of Uncharted is how it focuses more on Nathan Drake and his relationship with those that travel the globe alongside him, especially Victor Sullivan, Nathan’s oldest and most trusted companion.  “Sully” has been in every game so far but in this one you get to know him a bit better and learn how he really feels about Drake. Although not bonded by blood, the two are as close to father and son as you can get and you will see what they are willing to do for each other during the course of the game. Thanks to the fantastic acting of Nolan North and Richard McGonagle, Sully and Nate’s relationship feels authentic.

These two men, along with returning favorites Chloe Frazer (Claudia Black) and Elena Fisher (Emily Rose) go through the proverbial ringer in this latest adventure. And what an adventure it is. Naughty Dog proved that they are the masters of cinematic gameplay with Uncharted 2 and have once again shown the world how these sort of games should be done. It seems as if anything that could go wrong in any given situation does go wrong for Nate and pals and barely getting them out of a tight spot in one piece never gets old and will always get your heart racing. I have to admit that in retrospect, a lot of the action sequences were reminiscent of the ones from Among thieves but when you are in the thick of it, you won’t really care. Be warned that you will get so engrossed by the game that you’ll forget that you are in fact playing a video game and tend to shout frequently during the more hair raising action sequences. Some scenes are so intense that you can’t help yourself from yelling expletives. Again, Hollywood movies are given a run for their money with the Uncharted series.

Although Uncharted 3 does have a full multiplayer component to it, it’s a bullet point at best. The real heart and soul of this game and the franchise lie in its captivating cinematic presentation, witty dialogue and endearing cast. There are many different sort of games and gamers out there but to me, Uncharted 3 represents what video gaming is all about. To be completely immersed in a world and be swept away by its characters and scenarios is something that I’m always looking forward to and Uncharted 3 accomplishes this almost flawlessly. Uncharted 3: Drake’s deception is another win not just for Naughty dog but for gamers everywhere.

Liked

  • Great characters and story
  • Best graphics of the current generation
  • Varied gameplay and responsive controls
  • Hilarious dialogue between characters

Disliked

  • Multiplayer is a distraction and not necessary
  • Difficulty spikes
  • Aiming sensitivity has to be turned all the way up for best gun controls

Uncharted 3: Drakes’s deception was developed by Naughty Dog studios and published by Sony Computer entertainment. It was released exclusively for the Playstation 3 and is available now for $59.99.

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