Game Review: Uncharted 2 – Among Thieves (PS3)

uncharted2

Amidst a veritable hurricane of hype, Nathan Drake returns to the Playstation 3.

Is it everything the hysteria would lead you to believe, or does Matt have another take on this game?

Full review inside.

There was nothing really wrong with the original Uncharted.

Perhaps combat was a little dicey. Maybe the game was missing a multiplayer element.

It would be a jaded game reviewer indeed that faulted the game too much when the rest of the experience was so good.

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened. Many reviewers gave the first game short shrift, but after proclaiming their ‘final word’ on Uncharted, they slowly warmed up to the game. Months after it’s release, Uncharted began getting praise on podcasts, blog posts, and interviews.

Many video game journalists openly admitted they had judged the game too harsh, and too soon.

Why did I bring that up? I’ll let you know shortly.

On with my review…

Uncharted 2 continues the adventures of Nathan Drake. Fortune hunter, scoundrel, wise-ass; Drake is instantly charming, a memorable character if one ever existed.

The game is a third-person action/platformer. Think Tomb Raider with Han Solo instead of Laura Croft and you wouldn’t be far off.

Your mission is to find a long lost treasure of Shangri La, battle through hordes of bad guys, solve some puzzles, and trade punches with a were-bantha. A were-bantha? Yep… when you play it, you’ll know what I’m talking about.

The narrative has enough twists and turns, it’s difficult to describe without spoiling much of  the story. And I’m not going to do that… it’s the best part of the game.

While the storyline and presentation are very cinematic, it doesn’t hurt that Uncharted 2 has some of the best visuals on any platform. Little touches sell the experience, like snow sticking to your legs when you walk through snow, and a shifting depth of field focus that follows your aiming reticle. Other than the rare clipping problem that has Drake poking an arm through a wall, or floating in mid-air, you can’t complain too much about the visual fidelity.

Sound and music are top notch, and a lot of care obviously went into creating the perfect atmosphere.

Combat and control have been tweaked in this sequel, definitely making the difference between good and great… and multiplayer/co-op seals the deal.

If you own a PS3 for anything other than playing Blu-ray movies, you need to play this game.

Remember when I referenced reviews for Uncharted 1 in the beginning of this article?

Many reviewers are throwing out ridiculous descriptions and ratings for Uncharted 2, calling it ‘the best single player game ever’, or the ‘best video game in history’.

The game is good… maybe even great. It’s not THAT good.

I’m thinking that a lot of the crazy hyperbole surrounding this title has to do with reviewers feeling guilty about the drubbing they gave the first game.

It reminds me of the TV commercial where the referee apologizes to the crowd for blowing a call, and promises to make up for it by making a matching bad call against the other team in the second half.

Uncharted 2 is better than it’s predecessor, but just barely. And it’s NOT the second coming.

It IS worth a BUY. You won’t regret it.
Buy Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

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1 Comment

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