Review: Uncharted 3 (PS3)

By Wayne Webb

The Uncharted series is often referred to, as “more than just a game, it’s an experience”. It’s an old saw to be comparing games to interactive movies, but if there was one game series that was truly cinematic, then this is it.

The story follows the protagonist from the previous episodes, Nathan Drake – a man claiming to be descended from Sir Francis Drake – and following in his footsteps of danger and adventure in parts unknown. It owes a lot to movies like Indiana Jones and the movie serials it was based on, alongside games like Pitfall and Tomb Raider. Uncharted takes all of these elements and makes a game greater than the sum of its parts, not an easy feat by any means.

It follows that same theme of treasure hunting boy’s own adventuring, albeit with an adult slant, including guns, love interests and some villainous violence. The story unfolds in movie sequences, which, not once, was I tempted to skip through. Thanks to frequent auto saves, I didn’t have to sit through sequences repeatedly. It’s a measure of the story-telling ability, the acting and the design that every now and then you have to play a section and it feels like the game is slowing you down from finding out the next piece in the plot puzzle.

There’s still the action, the supporting cast and the climbing, traps and puzzles of former versions but unlike some games the levels don’t feel rehashed even if the overall arc is following a formula laid out in many genres and in previous editions.

There are over a hundred treasures littered in hidey holes throughout the game, some are in plain sight to get you hooked on discovering them all, and some are fiendishly off the beaten path. Add in the online multiplayer – which is just like most FPS multiplayer games – an online exercise in humility for the average or new player. It’s full of modes like death matches, capture the flag/defend your base options to keep the interest going long after the campaign ends, the treasures are all found and you’re looking for the next hit of Drake’s adventures.

Adventures games and interactive movies like this series are not for everyone, but if this sounds like something you might like then give it a go, this is the best example of this kind of game on the market today.

Pros: Amazing story, presentation, acting, action, gameplay, multiplayer and replay value
Cons: None

5 Shacks Out Of 5