Monday, June 27, 2016

Uncharted 4 review or...

…..A.K.A. Tomb Raider 4, but with a guy.

I was told this game was awesome.  I was highly dubious. Still a dude at work let me borrow his copy, actually he handed it to me and said play this.

Now I have played zero Uncharted # Drake’s (insert word here) games. All I knew it was third person , about a treasure hunter, has adventure, knows people and is basically male Tomb Raider.

My initial assessment was not wrong.

Nathan Drake has made it through three previous games and has built up a reputation for doing adventure stuff. He has made friends and gotten married. He has a dead/not dead brother. He loves him some treasure hunting too. That is what I knew after playing this game for an hour or so.

My assessment is still spot on. I was still playing male Laura Croft.

How is the game though?

It was  actually pretty damn fun!

This is your typical adventure jumping puzzle game. You travel to exotic locales. Climb a ton of stuff. Shoot some dudes. Jump and climb some more. Solve a puzzle. All so that you can find a clue to get to the next location. Much like how Mario’s princess is always in another castle, so too is the treasure never in the location you are at. It is always in another location.

The plot isn’t overly compelling or complicated. It is very paint by numbers. Maybe if I had played the previous three games I might had been more drawn into the story. It isn’t a bad tale, it just isn’t super compelling.

The game play is good though. The gun play is cover based and has Gears of War  feel, sans the uber violence. The puzzles are not overly annoying. Thank the gods, because I hate me some puzzle games. The jumping is also, thankfully, easy and forgiving. When leaping about as long as Nathan Drake is close to: a ledge, outcropping, windowsill, random pole, hand hold, etc. , then he tends to grab it right away. There is not a lot of timing or perfection needed while leaping about. Man was I glad for that too. I hate me some jumping games!

The game is very pretty to look at too. Much like the Witcher 3, the landscapes are beautiful. The locales above and underground are very scenic. When you are high on a cliff looking down gives a genuine sense of height if only for a fleeting moment. This is only a video game. A very pretty one at that.

It is a very linear game too. I was fine with that. Sure you can explore your surroundings a little and can find some little trinkets/treasures that  have no use, well none that I could find. I guess there is an achievement to find all 100+ of these nick-knacks. I didn’t go out of my way to look for them and still found quite a few while just moving through the areas.

It is not a long game either. I dropped 14 hours and change playing. It didn’t feel like a short game though. By the end it felt like I had played much longer than just a few nights.

There is some great cinematic moment events that you play through. My favorite being a frantic chase that involved a lot of shooting and jumping from vehicle to vehicle. Then culminating in a shoot’em up escape on motorcycle from an armored (possibly possessed) ork-like battle wagon. The final showdown in a pirate ship was very fun and movie-esque as well.

There are plenty of guns to use and try various combinations of. Plus there are explosives to throw and that can be very gratifying. Especially, when goons are clumped up and you are hiding with a primed grenade in hand!

Was there anything bad about Uncharted 4?

Bad? No.

Annoying? Kind of.

The game is broken into chapters. By Chapter 19 I was getting really tired of the constant climbing and jumping. Once again it was easy, but man did it get old. It seemed that was all I really did the entire game. Thankfully the minor gun battles broke-up the jumping.

The exploding mummy cave was annoying. Not difficult, just annoying.

The flashback to your childhood levels were annoying, Sure the first is the game tutorial, but the second was pretty much drek. I get why it was there, for story enhancement and closure for the characters, but that didn’t make it any less annoying.

The multi-player might be fun, but I found it abysmal. It has a team vs. team feel. That is cool. However, when it becomes everyone run around an shoot shit it becomes annoying. Instead of you know acting as a team to kill the other guys, everyone just runs about like assholes. It was awful for me, but what did I expect with multi-player? Damn tweekers!

I guess if you have played all the Uncharted Drake games, then you have by now finished this one too. If you have never played one, then give this game a whirl. It is a good 12+ hour game. It is very pretty. It is better and more forgiving  than the Tomb Raider games of old, yet is still a Tomb Raider game. It is a damn fine game and worth a play through.

I would try and bum a copy and not buy it. Mostly due to the limited replay ability it has. 

Now back to The Stick of Truth!

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