The Uncharted series has touched us all, and redefined gaming. At first, the series looks like just another Tomb Raider game, or Indiana Jones movie, but once we look a little bit deeper, we see it’s much more than that. Uncharted has pushed our Playstation 3 consoles to the limit, pushing every aspect to its maximum capabilities. Graphically, it is single-handedly the best-looking series of all time.
The first title, Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, released back in 2007, won best PS3 game of the year. When we popped in the disc, we were introduced to it with stunning colors and detail, and music that was candy to the ears. No doubt, Greg Edmonson was the best choice for this series, as we all remember his excellent work with Firefly.
The game itself, was not perfect, but as lovers of adventure games, we put it’s flaws aside, as the story sucked us in. Nathan Drake, the nobody-descendant of Sir Francis Drake, was out to find his ancestor’s treasure, dragging along his partner in crime, Victor “Goddamn” Sullivan. Together they got each other into too much trouble, and risked the lives of a reporter they never wanted there in the first place, Elena Fisher.
The first title left us on a slight cliffhanger, leaving us wanting more from Naughty Dog. Naughty Dog never failed to please the masses, and with that, they dove right into the development of the second title, Uncharted: Among Thieves.
Uncharted: Among Thieves, the second installment in the series, released in America October of 2009, and blew us all away. Not only was it the most impressive PS3 game to date, it took away multiple ‘Game of the Year’ awards, and won the heart of not just former Uncharted players, but new ones, as well. Naughty Dog had once again carved their names into our hearts with their loveable protagonist and compelling storyline.
The second Uncharted, in my eyes at least, was perfect. I found nothing wrong with the game, except for the fact that it was too short. Just when we thought the graphics of the first game were as good as it gets, Uncharted 2 proved us wrong: they were even better. The visuals swept us off our feet, and the music got even better. This time, instead of just the jungle, you were also in war torn cities, and icy taverns of the Tibetan mountains. Naughty Dog wanted to make a statement: we can make adventure beautiful no matter where it is.
This brings us to the year 2011, the year we Uncharted fans thought would never come: the release of Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception. At first we were teased with a thirty-eight second trailer that showed us almost nothing. Once the Video Game Awards rolled by, we were presented with an extended trailer, which opened our eyes and showed us more.
What’s happening here? Why is Drake in the Arabian desert of all places? The first question I asked myself was, “are we going to be staring at hills of sand for ten hours of game play?” Quickly shaking my head I realized, no, Naughty Dog would never do that to us.
About a week after the VGAs, on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, there was a segment on Uncharted 3, showing game play of the long-awaited title. Granted, the game play did not take place in the desert, but in a large mansion that was, just like the aircraft, engulfed in flames. You’re running alongside Victor Sullivan, who’s back for another adventure filled with scandal and chaos.
The snippet of game play showed us a lot of changes in the series. A lot more work with your partner, an all-new stealth mode, and a lot more hand to hand combat. All things we Uncharted fans have wanted. And yes, graphics that again exceed the previous installment.
With previewing the game in 3D at the Consumer Electronics Show this year, my mind was blown. Not only is this Uncharted smoother than the previous two, it’s in 3-fricken-D. Amazing. The visuals are stronger than ever, and the story line (or what we know of it, rather), is already sucking me in, and has me wanting more.
At the end of last month, Sony announced their new gaming system, the PSP2, or NGP/Next Generation Portable. One of the games they showed being played with the device was of course, an all-new Uncharted title. Not much is known of this title, but from the game play we’ve seen, the game takes place somewhere in the jungle. The new Uncharted title also takes advantage of the NGP’s touch screen and back touchpad. The demonstrator showed us a quick snippet, touching the screen with Nathan jumping, and climbing up walls when the back touch pad was stroked. A release date for this has yet to be announced, but the NGP has been predicted for November of this year.
For a lot of us, Uncharted has blown our minds, and touched our hearts. With a loveable guy-next-door main character like Nathan Drake, and your average yet sexy accomplice Elena Fisher, you can’t help but want to become a part of the game itself, and pack your bags and go on a cave crawling, ruin hunting adventure. How long will this series go on? How many different places will we have the luxury of seeing in full 1080p high-definition goodness? For now we have two titles for the next twelve months, but we know that Naughty Dog will not disappoint us, and if the series must end, it will end with a bang.
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