Uncharted 4 In

The 3rd and final game I picked up with the PS4 was Uncharted 4.  I have to say that 10gig network installs are a level of stupid I thought we had moved on from.  Horizon was the only game where the install was rather quick.  FF15 was 12gigs.  As a PC gamer for the past 5 years, I just let the install work itself out since I don’t buy disks.  I guess the disks themselves are just betas and the full game is downloaded afterwards.

Back on track.  Uncharted 4 plays quite similar to the previous games.  Lots of climbing, some nominal puzzles that require moving things, and enemies that can take an entire clip of ammo to drop.  Rare is the game that takes as much ammo as Uncharted.  The aiming controls are not as precise as Horizon, as there’s a noticeable spread and lack of accuracy with weapons.  It’s annoying to have a headshot lined up, only to miss because of RNG.

Two neat additions are better stealth controls (tall grass hides you) and a grapple hook to swing like Tarzan.  The former works most of the time, but can act a bit buggy.  The latter really opens up gameplay to make spaces a whole lot bigger.  Speaking of which, past Uncharted games had rather linear corridors, with a single path to traverse.  This game seems to have 2-4 different paths that branch out and give you a different experience.  It feels a lot more like Lara Croft’s open zones than I expected.

This particular game introduces a new character, Sam, as Nate’s brother.  Troy Baker is the voice behind the character, and I have to say that the banter between both is exceptionally well written.  It feels a lot like the way I would act with my brother (or sister for that matter).  The sarcasm, the jibes, the worry… it all works.

I’m at chapter 13 now, which is a return to the beginning of the game that started in media res.  The bad guy is unfortunately 1 dimensional, which is somewhat disappointing given previous bad guys in the series.  His lead aide is impressive though, and the South African accents throughout the game help to add some realism.

The plot itself feels like the Goonies, but with 3 characters.  You are literally chasing after a pirate, who hid their massive wealth in a cave system, and need to follow clues and deadly puzzles to get there.  All I’m missing now is a wishing well.

All told, it’s a well put together package.  The characters you interact with are solid.  The controls are ok.  The visuals and audio are above par.  The story is familiar but not trite.   I prefer it to Uncharted 3, but still hold the 2nd at a higher level.

The really good news in all of this is that I’m having fun.  And that is a hundred times more important than anything else.

 

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