The Games of E3: Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

by Matthew Thompson (Images-Sony, this game’s  site can be found here)

(I was trying to work out how to discuss E3 this year (Note: I was not there, just watched it from home) and I’ve settled on rolling out about 10-15 small blogs over the next two weeks. Each will focus on a game shown or announced at E3 that caught my eye and will be presented in alphabetical order. I will include some other impressions when appropriate as well. You can find all of these blogs archived here. Enjoy!)

Uncharted 4 1

While I was hoping for a trailer featuring some snippets of gameplay, the teaser that Naughty Dog unleashed of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End at E3 was enough to have me frothing at the mouth for more on Drake’s next big adventure. Obviously the first takeaway is just how beautiful the graphics are. From the tiny details seen on Drake’s face to the lush jungle environments, this trailer made it clear that Naughty Dog will be continuing its legacy of top-of-the-line visuals on the PlayStation 4.

It also gave us our first peek into the storyline. Between the dialogue featured in the video and the following description from the game’s website, it seems to be going in the direction I’d have wanted it to:

“Several years after his last adventure, retired fortune hunter, Nathan Drake, is forced back into the world of thieves. With the stakes much more personal, Drake embarks on a globe-trotting journey in pursuit of a historical conspiracy behind a fabled pirate treasure. His greatest adventure will test his physical limits, his resolve, and ultimately what he’s willing to sacrifice to save the ones he loves.”

I love that they aren’t ignoring the message behind Uncharted 3. There Drake learned the toll his lifestyle was taking on those around him. In Uncharted 4, we’ll see an older Drake one who left his treasure hunting days behind him for some time and had to be pulled back into things through something he seemed to be unable to ignore. Some people seem to think we are headed in a very dark direction. Certainly some of the lines and the subtitle might point in that way. I think it may be a bit darker, but I also don’t think the developers have forgotten the light-hearted charm that is such an integral part of this series.

Not much to glean from a gameplay standpoint by the trailer, but they are certainly saying the right things in the above interview and with Bruce Straley at the helm, I have faith it will deliver on that end too. The one thing that they said that I really liked was that they would be expanding the options for how Drake can approach combat, exploration and traversal. That may seem like an obvious next step for a lot of sequels, but that doesn’t mean they always take it. So I look forward to how they are expanding Drake’s moveset and methods for handling these various components.

Uncharted 4 is still a ways off, but I can’t wait to see more on this game leading up to release and of course to play it for myself in 2015.

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2 comments on “The Games of E3: Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

  1. I’m hoping this isn’t too dark too. I don’t think it will be, but save that stuff for Last of Us. I’m expecting something like Temple of Doom though, where there’s plenty of dark stuff happening, but they remember that it’s still supposed to be a fun adventure. I am really hoping that the platforming steps up the challenge also, I’m not expecting Tomb Raider levels, but just want something with more substance. Excited for this though, hope ND’s first foray onto the PS4 is a winner. Also glad they’re not working on something that’s a waste of their talent.

    • For sure. It would be nice to see a good balance of leveling difficulty, substance and fun. Certainly, sometimes developers go too far in just one direction and it really takes the enjoyment out of the game.

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