Uncharted 4

SHORT REVIEW: PS4 VERSION

Today’s review brought to you with no waffle or explanation, and the assumption you’re familiar with the Uncharted games. 

Let’s immediately get into it.

Uncharted 4 is a summer blockbuster game complete with tomfoolery.

You can’t help but notice the critical complaints aimed at Uncharted’s narrative. Does the character growth compliment the swash-buckling action? More importantly, does it matter to you? Has anyone been misled? Judging the merits of a thing, depends on what that thing’s trying to sell you. In this case, a swash-buckling action blockbuster. I’m confident that no-one acquired the game under the belief that this was anything but a shooty-bang-bang trip round the globe, complete with quips and false dramatic premises. You can argue that Drake’s a mass murderer and you can argue that games should have progressed beyond Doom, and if you do, you’re missing the bloody point. This is a rollicking good adventure, not a brooding introspective look at the human condition. Not every game can be Spec Ops: The Line, nor should it be.

Uncharted™ 4: A Thief’s End

Weeeeeeee… What you didn’t see is the heroic leap and death as I missed the boat completely. Yes, you can die in Uncharted.

Thanks to the magic programming dust filtrating around the globe we are blessed with choices. Lots and lots of choices. You can play a Limbo, or a City Skylines, then retire your brain to leap around some cliffs.

You won’t be falling to your doom at regular intervals, as that wouldn’t tick the mental empowerment boxes. What this game allows if for you to swing around Tarzan style shooting hired goons to the appropriate soundtrack. Yes, you can shoot conveniently placed red things for the desired explosion and take part in your own cut-scenes as you climb ruins and rocks.

Stealth makes an appearance and it isn’t half as bad as you’d think it would be. Indeed, I found myself enjoying it to the extent I would restart sections until I nailed it. By nailed it, I mean snapping everyone’s neck. The stealth’s not overly clever and perhaps too simplistic, but, and this is important, I did enjoy it. If all else fails, of course, you can just shoot them in the face… Like a bad guy would do, because Drake is not a hero.

I’d never considered that wisecracking funtime Drake was anything but a scoundrel, liar and a thief. Saying that, I’ve not seen him steal much over the years… More of an assassin with a sideline in desecration.

Quote – You all loved it when Indy shot Greedo in Battlestar Galactica 2 and berated all known friends on the internet when this had been changed.

Yes, you walk into a scene with chest high walls, yes you need to take cover. We’ve all done this in our daily lives. Uncharted 4 does a decent job at elevating these familiar base shootouts, as cover crumbles away with enemy gunfire and enemies throw grenades and flank you. The hired goons can be pretty lethal. I’m also happy to report that there is a big bloke in armour that requires fifty thousand gunshots to eliminate. WE CANT NOT HAVE THAT BLOKE CAN WE?

Uncharted™ 4: A Thief’s End Fight

Excitedly hiding behind the exciting mast in an exciting pirate boat, against an enemy that could be considered… Exciting.

A special mention to the Ai. I didn’t notice any dialogue out of place, nor wait around for it to catch up. In fact, my companions were useful as they also entertained the concept of stealth and snapped a fair few necks in the name of friendship. Thinking about it, the Ai is absolutely amazing as bad scripting can destroy all fancy-pants ideas.

I’ve long argued that graphics isn’t the be-all and end-all, but bloody hell, Uncharted 4 makes the case for “shutup and look at that vista”. Some areas appear photorealistic. Well done guys, you’ve finally made it. I recall walking around a dusty environment marvelling at the dust. How many games can you name where have you marvelled at dirt*? Now that is a graphical achievement. The soundtrack and sound match the game’s graphical prowess. The production values are quite incredible, despite whatever reservation you can make about plot, tone and ever so slight-mass-murder.

Uncharted 4 is a series of under-the-hood technical achievements.

*Dirt Rally had good dirt, oh, so did Sim Ant, and …

Uncharted™ 4: A Thief’s End and scene

Annnddddd scene.

The ending was pleasant. The whole series was pleasant. Nice pleasant series of games. Overrated? Maybe. I think games such as this hearken into the pioneering spirit of an early 80s Hollywood blockbuster. Light and dark, all at the same time. A quip, a Tarzan jump here and shotgun blast to the face there.

Quote from Drake himself – “Sigh, why do I keep lying to the woman I love?” as she takes him back with a warm embrace. Why, the lovable goofball murderer.

Uncharted 4 with unfeasible fingertip grabs, wondrous looks and most naturalist in-game conversations; How do we score such a thing?

8

The difference between obvious crass adventure and snobby high-art could be attributed to tone and your own sensibilities. Especially within the world of computer games, a new-ish medium still finding its feet and finally discovering itself, like a  spider monkey in a rather fetching dress. The tart.

What you will find here, is a simple adventure and a fine send off to the Uncharted series.

Uncharted™ 4: A Thief’s End

Ah-hah! He faces into the rain! Tech’s not so clever now! GOODBYE!