Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception

Score

Sections

Pros

  • Dazzling blend of matinee thrills and all-action gaming
  • The most spectacular set-pieces in the business
  • Incredible graphics and a game with real heart

Cons

  • A mostly linear experience
  • Works best if you've played Uncharted and Uncharted 2

Key Features

  • Review Price: £38.89




There’s

a problem with reviewing games. No matter how hard we try to pretend

that there’s some kind of technical or critical practice involved, as

we pore over and evaluate the graphics, the game mechanics, the

production design and the gameplay, it really all comes down to one

thing: the experience. How does this game make you feel? With some

games, that’s a tricky one. Why do you feel one way or another? Will

other people necessarily feel the same way. With Uncharted 3 it’s

easy. Playing Uncharted 3 is like watching one of your favourite

blockbuster movies, but having direct control of the action. By

necessity it’s a linear experience, but if so it’s one of the most

thrilling and emotionally engaging games we’ve ever played.



Uncharted 3




Now,

some of you might not have played Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune and

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves – in which case we’d urge you to

rectify this error immediately, if only because it makes playing

Uncharted 3 even richer and more wondrous than it already is.

Basically, the games chart the life and times of one Nathan Drake –

a treasure-hunting hero in the mould of Lara Croft and a certain Dr.

Jones – as he searches for fortune and glory across South America,

Europe, Asia and the Himalayas.



Uncharted 3




If

you were being critical, you would probably say that the gameplay is

effectively Tomb Raider meets Prince of Persia meets Gears of War,

with a nice mix of platforming, puzzle-solving and cover-based gun

battles, but this doesn’t really do it justice. The trick to

Uncharted is that the mix is so perfect, and that the games are so

cinematic. We don’t just mean this in the usual sense that it’s

packed with movie-like camera angles and motion-captured acting, but

in the sense that the games value the things that used to make

Hollywood movies great: a good story, interesting characters,

engaging dialogue and big narrative hooks. And when the Uncharted

games go for the spectacle, they go really, really big. Uncharted 2

in particular was full of moments where you thought “they’re not

really going to do that, are they? They can’t!” And then they

did.



Uncharted 3




All

this is true of Uncharted 3, which does a brilliant job of taking

Drake, his mentor/father-figure Sully, and the other key Uncharted

characters to new places and new dangers, while exploring a little

deeper into what makes them tick. The action kicks off in London,

before moving to French chateaux, middle-Eastern castles, secret

crypts and pirate shipyards. It starts strong and pretty much never

lets up.





The

team at Naughty Dog has practically perfected its pacing. Where

lesser games give you the same sixty seconds, over and over again

with a few variations, Drake’s Deception moves effortlessly from

high-tension platforming to fraught gun battle to brain-stretching

puzzles to fisticuffs and chase sequences, each element never

standing out as separate, but all part of one gloriously cohesive

whole. Like the Call of Duty-style orchestrated shooter, it’s

effectively a one-track thrill ride, but one that works on a much

broader emotional level than Infinity Ward’s run and gun shooters

ever could.



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