Sony has had a bit of a rough year with the PlayStation 3 in 2007. Much of this is due in part to exclusives like Halo 3, Mass Effect and BioShock going to the Xbox 360. This is compounded by the fact that Sony you are losing exclusive rights. to games like Devil May Cry 4, Resident Evil 5 and Grand Theft Auto IV. Also, Metal Gear Solid 4 was delayed until the year 2008. Many gamers thought that Sony was done and should bow to Microsoft; however, the PlayStation 3 has breathed new life into Sony recently.
After the PlayStation 3 price reduction to $400, PlayStation 3 sales have increased. Also, there are PlayStation 3 exclusives like Heavenly Sword and Ratchet & Clank: Future Tools of Destruction that are worth playing. Fortunately, things are finally looking bright for Sony. Sony seems to be on the right track and heading in the right direction. This is clearly seen in his biggest PlayStation 3 game this holiday season of 2007 in Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune.
The story of this game revolves around Nathan Drake and his allies. They are looking for a treasure; therefore, they are lost on an island in the Pacific Ocean. Now, Nathan and his acquaintances have every intention of escaping from this disgusting island because they are being chased by deadly mercenaries. Naughty Dog definitely fits the bill when it comes to story. The plot is compelling and not as predictable as some games might be. The gameplay has aspects of a typical third-person shooter with a twist. This twist is that you’ll be doing more than just gunning down opponents.
Players will also have to play through some pretty unique platform jumping elements. There’s a peek around the corner technique that’s eerily similar to Gears of War. Mr. Drake can cover himself by putting his back against the wall and squatting down. Blindfireing is also another gameplay mechanic that was heavily influenced by a game like Gears of War. This is, of course, when you hide behind cover and shoot without exposing yourself. Platform jumping is analogous to a game like Prince of Persia. Drake doesn’t look athletic, but looks are deceiving. He can perform the most acrobatic maneuvers when he is in the air.
Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune boasts stunning visuals across the board. The textures are clean and the flora is great. Lighting and architecture are just a few of the many things that are amazing about this game. In addition to shooting, there are a few moments in the game where Nathan can use his arms and legs in combat. The advantage of correctly executing a combo attack is more ammo, but the disadvantage is that missing will not give you anything in return and you will lose health. There is nothing too extravagant about the weapons in the game. They range from rudimentary pistols to explosive grenades. Drake can also traverse the environment with his mobility. He knows how to scale large obstacles, swing through a gap using a rope, and jump from one ledge to another with ease. The controls are responsive and never deter players from enjoying the game. Replenishing health is done by simply standing still and waiting (Gears of War style).
Fortunately, all of Drake’s actions are easily done. The only two flaws in the game are the animations and the length. There were occasional sequences where enemies didn’t exactly act accordingly after being hit. This resulted in awkward and unrealistic physics. Opponents won’t perform the electric slide, but it was strange to see an enemy fly eccentrically. Another complaint about the game is the length of nine hours. A game that succinctly needs more gameplay. Although the game is concise, the gameplay itself is fascinating. The in-game audio really made the plot come together. The voice acting is excellent and not over the top. The sound of Drake reloading his gun has a tactile feel. The water falling on the ground has a different sound fluctuation.
Overall, there is no doubt that Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune is the best PlayStation 3 exclusive that PlayStation 3 owners will greatly admire. The intriguing plot overrides the few minor flaws in the game.
Final verdict: Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune is a very good game.
9.4 out of 10