Uncharted Two: Among Thieves Review
With an exhilarating campaign, intense cooperative mode, and addictive multiplayer competition, Uncharted two is a accomplish game that is downright awesome.
There isn’t much time to loosen when you live the life of a treasure hunter. The ever-imperiled Nathan Drake is at it again, traveling the globe, searching for a lost artifact, and attempting not to get shot, all for the sake of his noble (saving humanity) and selfish (impressing a lady) ambitions. Uncharted Two: Among Thieves doesn’t veer far from the superb formula established by Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, but a few tweaks and a strong concentrate on details make this a better game in every way. Your journey once again becomes an incredible escapade, permanently thrusting fresh obstacles in front of you that not only suggest diversity, but are also an absolute blast to overcome. The stunning visuals bring these exotic locales to life, providing you a scenic tour of a tropical jungle, crumbling ice cave, and dilapidated city, among others, while making every fresh place feel unique and welcoming. The gameplay isn’t perfect–the cover mechanic is too goopy in taut places and there’s some inconsistency when it comes to climbing obstacles–but these puny problems are largely inconsequential. Uncharted Two: Among Thieves is an awesome game that continually surprises, impresses, and entertains.
Treasure hunter Nathan Drake is off on another escapade, pursuing an ancient artifact that is rumored to hold mysterious powers. After being lured into his latest venture by his smarmy friend Harry Flynn, he quickly realizes the ramifications of his latest discovery. He then commences a fresh quest to thwart an evil warlord from grabbing this sacred object for himself and growing all-powerful in the process. The plot contains a number of not-so-surprising twists, but it stays interesting across because Drake and the supporting cast are so realistic and likable. His motivations are unspoiled, but Drake takes on the formidable task with a roguish smile and sarcastic comments, making him inherently likable and rather funny. The playful back-and-forth with his friends also sounds realistic. Depending on what the situation warrants, the characters throw casual insults or helpful advice, and the ease with which they converse brings a feeling of authenticity to the act. This crisp dialogue, along with the finely crafted cutscenes and well-developed characters, helps the narrative of Among Thieves shine, making it a strong part of this excellent escapade.
Drake doesn’t take his duty as a world-class treasure hunter lightly. He is well tooled to tackle anything that comes his way, whether he’s fighting well-armed mercenaries, making treacherous leaps across near-bottomless pits, or using his noggin to lump together ancient puzzles. Taking down hordes of nameless soldiers is incredible in Uncharted two because of the wealth of awesome weaponry and the sleek shooting mechanic. Your arsenal packs a mean punch, and it’s sadistically satisfying to let liberate a earsplitting point-blank blast from a pistole or knock a sniper off a ledge with a ideal shot from your rocket launcher. The grenades are effortless to aim, making it a joy to lob one right at the feet of a chain gun-toting madman and witness him soar with arms flailing into the clear blue sky. If you get close to your enemies, Drake isn’t afraid to get his arms dirty. You can calmly snap the neck of an unaware foe if you can sneak behind him unnoticed, but even in a face-to-face brawl, the fisticuffs are exceptional. Mashing on the square button produces powerful haymakers, but you’ll need to avoid and counter the retaliatory punches of your enemies to finish them off. These killing blows are over-the-top, displaying your surprising power in slow motility as your enemies crumple to the turf.
Given that Drake can’t withstand a bullet barrage, cover plays a ample part in Uncharted Two. While stop-and-pop activity has been seen in other shooters, the levels in Among Thieves are designed to take advantage of vertical space to give these tussles a more dynamic feel. In many of these set-piece battles, you have the choice to stand meekly behind cover, peppering enemies from afar when you can risk sticking your neck out for a 2nd, or to dance away from the activity, strategically positioning yourself right where your foes are most vulnerable. This maneuverability adds a feeling of managed chaos to battles, letting you permanently switch your strategy to adapt to the different tactics your enemies will use to bring you down. Unluckily, the controls are less than precise in cramped corridors, making it difficult to sleekly slide from cover to cover without mistakenly exposing your vulnerable backside. It’s a petite complaint, but it can be frustrating during some of the more intense battles if you find yourself sitting in the open air when you meant to hide behind a nearby desk. Nevertheless, the combat is explosive and unpredictable in Uncharted, and the massive multitude in the levels compels you to permanently switch your strategy.
Drake drapes around the strangest places.
Drake’s astounding agility plays a major role during combat, but it’s when he has the freedom to explore that his leaping prowess is fully exposed. You can climb up walls, sway from ropes, shimmy across ledges, and even leap from one moving vehicle to another during a thrilling pursue sequence. The platforming sections do not request that you be ultraprecise. Drake lightly grabs onto any ledge he leaps near, so you need to worry more about what path you’re going to take rather than how to land a ridiculous leap of faith. The environments you have to navigate are organic. You can climb a large diversity of structures to proceed on, whether it’s a traffic sign in a war-torn city street, an icy rock face in a frozen cave, or a dangling branch in a tropical jungle. The only problem is that the platforming is pretty linear, so you often can’t interact with surfaces that seem like they should be climbable. While this minor quibble chisels away a bit at the believability of your deeds, the platforming sections are well designed and fairly entertaining. And just when you get convenient making your way across a treacherous precipice, a handhold will fall apart in your arms, making you quickly figure out a fresh way across and ensuring you never relieve during these awesome sequences.
The majority of your quest is made up of these combat or platforming sections, but there are thoughtful puzzles you must solve as well. These quiet moments are not as entertaining as the act sequences, but they have their own charm. Here, you must perform such tried-and-true tasks as reflecting a rafter of light onto a specific surface or placing ornamental blocks onto the correct squares, but there is a twist to the formula that gives Drake even more personality. Drake’s journal contains everything you need to know to solve the puzzle at arm, and you must by hand spin through the pages to find what you need. The book is packed with pictures and brief notes, and you must cautiously analyze these diagrams to figure out the solution. The puzzles are far from challenging, but spinning through the book feels realistic, and piecing together the mysterious clues gives you a taste of what a real treasure hunter might practice. The doodles that Drake added to the journal are another cool aspect, albeit they don’t have anything to do with your quest. One page depicts the various moods of his longtime friend Sully, and the goofy caricatures are pretty amusing.
All of these different elements, along with the lighthearted story, are mixed together flawlessly, providing an intoxicating rhythm that continually builds upon the previous section. The incredible rate at which Uncharted moves is staggering, seamlessly urging players from one incredible practice to the next, without ever staying on one mechanic for too long. This effortless tempo is showcased exceptionally well during a stage that takes place on a train halfway through the escapade. It seems like your options would be limited onboard a narrow vehicle, but every fresh car you leap to has a surprise, and the sheer breadth of different deeds makes this one of the highlights of a fantastic quest. Whether you’re gunning down enemies in a taut passenger car, suspending despairingly on to handholds on the outside of the train, sniping enemies way off in the distance, trading punches with a hulked-up mercenary, or dodging fire from a pesky helicopter, this section is an adrenaline rush. And the scenery is just as varied. You will fly past a broad multitude of backgrounds, which gives the impression you indeed are onboard a fast-moving vehicle. From beginning to end, Uncharted two keeps up its brisk tempo, creating an practice that is exhilarating, thrilling, and never boring.
All of this incredible act is complemented by some of the most awesome visuals on PlayStation Three. As you travel through lush rain forests, into snow-covered wastelands, across the ruins of a crumbling city, and to the many other places Drake ventures in his quest, you will be treated to a massive array of breathtaking glances. It’s effortless to get lost in the atmosphere, swinging the camera around to admire the glances while shortly leaving behind about the angry man with a gun shouting at you in the distance. The animation is particularly amazing. Drake moves and reacts with eerie believability, whether he’s stumbling realistically after a long hop, quickly reaching behind his back to grab a weapon, or just walking up a long flight of stairs. The attention to detail during the cutscenes is just as striking. The characters stir and interact with each other with subtle touches that make them seem almost lifelike. There are lots of little details that add even more to the practice. When you’re in the jungle, you can see squirrels scamper up the towering trees, and you get moist when you wade through a sea. And even with all this detail, the game runs sleekly, even during the most hectic fights.
If you’re hankering for some more treasure hunting after ending the campaign, there’s a three-player cooperative mode as well. This mode places you in modified levels from the main quest, and you must mow down a bunch of enemies on the way toward achieving your ultimate purpose. The titillating combat makes the transition intact, and playing through these gorgeous locations with a few mates is certainly joy, but it’s not fairly as engaging as the main escapade. Enemies swarm from all around you–throwing grenades from the front, sniping from above, and releasing torrents of Gatling gun bullets from behind–and it can feel a bit terrific at times. The sometimes finicky cover controls don’t always function during the warmth of these ultraintense battles, and it can feel claustrophobic as you despairingly roll out of the way to avoid a screaming rocket blast. Despite the petite problems, this is a welcome diversion for people who love the main quest but hanker sentient companions.
Making insane leaps is one of the best aspects of multiplayer.
The competitive multiplayer is even better. The levels are once again modeled after the environments from the main quest, but your astounding agility in battle combined with the powerful weaponry make for explosive competitions. There are a number of gameplay types, which are variations on such popular formulas as Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, and Territories. But the sheer thrill of battle raises these beyond the forgettable squall of other shooters. Your agility is the main differentiating factor. It is simply incredible to spring away from your perverse pal who is cheerfully wielding a shotgun, leap across a gaping ravine, and grab on to a far-off ledge with just your fingertips. Frantically tucking on the X button to raise yourself to safety while your opponent comes storming after you is a heart-racing practice, and turning the tables on your pursuer as he attempts to make the same treacherous leap is so satisfying. There is also a perks system that gives you prizes beyond mere joy for submerging time into this endeavor. These prizes increase your killing power and make the mode even more joy.
Uncharted Two: Among Thieves is a finish package. The ideally paced campaign is unspoiled joy from beginning to end, seamlessly combining top-notch shooting, sleek platforming, clever puzzles, and a playful story into one of the most engaging and satisfying adventures around. Competitive multiplayer is just as compelling, displaying the same joy gameplay elements from the main quest in a chaotic battle against other players. The cooperative mode has its own unique pull, letting players merge their efforts to take down an unrelenting force of angry attackers. The few flaws–touchy cover controls in taut spaces and linear platforming sections–are so slight they hardly stand out among the sea of fantastic features. Uncharted Two: Among Thieves is an incredible game.