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'Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection' Review

Johnny Flores, Jr. |
October 19, 2015 | 1:52 p.m. PDT

Staff Reporter


"Uncharted" has long been hailed as one of Playstation's greatest franchises. Many have waited for the original trilogy to make its way to the Playstation 4 to not only build excitement for "Uncharted 4" but to allow for newcomers to become acquainted with the series as well.

Bluepoint Games and Naughty collaborate to release nothing short of a masterpiece, a collection of the trilogy once made available only on Playstation 3 in high-definition with the addition of 60 frames per second and access to the "Uncharted 4" multiplayer beta later this year. It is a love letter to fans of the series and a great welcome to newcomers. It is a celebration of Naughty Dog's creation and testament to how far they have come since the days of Crash Bandicoot and Jak and Daxter.

Since this collection is made up of three individual games within a trilogy I thought it would be best to do a "Mini-Review" of each game and how they feel before diving into the collection as a whole.

"Uncharted: Drake's Fortune"

It is truly hard to believe that "Drake's Fortun"e hit the Playstation 3 eight years ago, however, if I had not told you this you would not even realize that this game is eight years old. Bluepoint and Naughty Dog did a fantastic job in rendering this game for the Playstation 4. Out of all three games this one feels the most new. The upgraded visuals make cinematic moments pop and higher frame rate help alleviate the sluggish feel of the original. Never mind, that the SixAxis controls of the original have been done away with. Aside from some occasional animation nuances there is really no problem to be had with "Drake's Fortune." It is the biggest upgrade by far and a blast to play some eight years later.

"Uncharted 2: Among Thieves"

Arguably the most popular entry in the series "Uncharted 2: Among Thieves" continues with the various upgrades implemented across the collection and does not disappoint one bit as well. The visuals that once blew me away on the Playstation 3 still do to this day. From the opening train sequence to the closing moments "Uncharted 2" is as beautiful as ever. Along with the sheer sense of beauty come the scope, hilarity, tight gunplay, excellent story and memorable dialogue that "Among Thieves" is known for. Together they make for a remaster worth playing.

"Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception"

"Drake's Deception" is one of the more "controversial" games within the current trilogy. Many felt that it did not live up to "Uncharted 2" while others disregarded it altogether. It is certainly a more narrative game and my personal favorite of the current trilogy. It has the feeling of a movie and the fluidity and higher definition help aid in that sense. The strong narrative and blockbuster sequences were even more enjoyable some several years later and visual upgrades in between.

Based off the sentiments above it would be easy to assume that this game like "Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain" is a perfect 10, however, that is not the case. "Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection" is indeed a masterpiece of a collection, however, not without nuances in between.

As mentioned in the "Mini-Review" of "Drake's Fortune" there were a few animation glitches to be found. Likewise in "Drake's Deception" I found the camera not able to catch up to my fluid movement. The result was the camera staying in one place while Drake was in another. This was not game breaking in anyway but at times it did take away the movie-like feeling that "Uncharted 3" offers.

Graphical nuances aside there is nothing more to be had in this collection other than the singleplayer campaigns. This is by no means a negative aspect. The lengthy campaigns alone will take you close to 15-20 hours to complete. That's roughly 60 hours of gaming. Never mind, the various difficulties to be toyed with and treasures to be found.

Bluepoint and Naughty Dog elected to not offer the superb multiplayer of "Uncharted 2 or 3" in favor of a beta for 4 along with other reasons as well. This is completely understandable after the disastrous launch of Halo: The Master Chief Collection's multiplayer in November of last year. However, there is not even an "Extras" menu to be found rifled with concept art, character models and other such features you would find. This is odd considering how much depth Uncharted has in terms of characters and locales. There is, however, a "Speed Run" option for those who would like to clock how long it takes to finish the various games. While I respect the art of "speedrunning" "Uncharted" is not the type of game to be played rapidly. It is meant to be taken in and enjoyed. Minutes spent gazing at the various locales such as Nepal along with lengthy periods of time attempting to find various pieces of treasure or solve challenging puzzles.

Even without the multiplayer modes or an Extras menu "Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection" is an amazing ride and made me even more excited for "Uncharted 4." It is truly worth its value and a worthy addition to your Playstation 4 library. Many did not think that Sony let alone Naughty Dog would create such a collection but here we are today. Now we wait in excitement and anticipation for the final game and the beta later this year.

Be on the lookout for an updated review once the "Uncharted 4" beta hits this year.

Reach Staff Reporter Johnny Flores, Jr. here.



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