Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception (2011/2015) Video Game Review

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Now for the second or last stretch before we tackle the most recent instalment…and The Golden Abyss.  Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception.

Our story begins in London, England (1 were the Victorian Architecture has survived and is occupied by Guy Ritchie’s Usual Suspects and the Chavs in Kingsmen: The Secret Service).  Drake and Sully come to do business with a man named Talbot, who gives them a pile of money for Drake’s ring.  When Drake and Sully notice the money’s fake, a huge brawl ensues before they get into trouble.  We are then thrown into Drake’s past, as a 15 year old thief running around Columbia meeting Sully for the 1st time, as well as Sully’s client that day – Katherine Marlowe, the main antagonist.  We then return to the present, which has Drake, Sully, Chloe (from ‘2) and Charlie Cutter (tough cockney englishman with a knowledge for history and a fear of tight spaces) go looking for what was stolen from them, and to stop it if it’s too dangerous.

Now to the chart through the characteristics:

The Graphics, up to that point, were the best looking in the series.  It was fantastic in 2011, and in the remaster it’s just as mesmerising as before.

The Art Style is…wow.  Among Thieves has a glorious presentation, and Drake’s Deception is no different in quality.  Instead of the Jungles in ‘1 and the Snowy Mountains in ‘2, our star landscape is the Arabian Desert – and without spoiling it (we’ll call it the “hard times level”), the presentation of the desert is…amazing!  Really amazing.  It was insane in 2011, and it’s still awe-inspiring today.  Excellent!  Great job!  I was taking screenshot after screenshot on my PS4 and sending it to my Facebook.  It’s 1 of my favourite things to look at in a video game, along with various other levels such as how London, the ship, the French Castle (my favourite) and the underground museum are presented.

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Hard times Bay Bay!

The Voice Acting is once again top notch.  Nobody was bad.

The Characters in Uncharted 3 are as good, sometimes even better than ‘2 and obviously better than ‘1.  I’ve found myself greatly disliking Marlowe and Talbot to the point of true hatred (something about English villains can do that in ways that Russians and Pirates can’t)…and I’ll get to another reason why their henchmen were particularly dislikable.

The Story is once again excellent – The premise is the same (Find an ancient civilisation or relic before the baddies), but she’s obviously wearing a different dress and hairstyle.  Moving on from South American treasure thieves and military-trained russians, we now take on the last Great American foe that isn’t German – the English.

The Music is, for the 3rd time, composed by Greg Edmondson, who did the music for Mike Judge’s King Of The Hill and Joss Whedon’s Firefly.  5 stars.  Moving on.

Gameplay-wise, Uncharted 3 is roughly as good as ‘2, but at the same time some of its extra features actually disturb its flow – primarily in the form of quick-time event fisticuff battles that Drake has.  It’s featured in the game’s opening since Drake and Sully walked in without guns.  But later on in the game it doesn’t have the same relevance.  Does it look good?  Yes.  But it does break it up when it didn’t need to be.  On top of this, some battles become so difficult that they reach a “troll” level (or if you’re into classic anime – think of the gun battles in Trigun), the amount of guns blazing in your direction, non-stop, and then the fact that they throw grenades at you within 30 seconds of you hiding in cover (while guns are blazing), surrounding you with gunfire when you least expect it, and of course the amount of terminator-endurance soldiers…It really makes you want to get your hands on the villains.  Some would call this an acceptable challenge to overcome – But these battles literally feel like they’re cheating as they appear to come out of the metaphorical clown car, are hard to kill, and your bullets run out faster than you would like them to (which is never).

Would I recommend Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception?  Much like Uncharted 2, definitely!  It’s not as good as Among Thieves, but it’s still a good bit better than Drake’s Fortune.  The gameplay is more inconsistent than ‘2, doesn’t flow quite as well, and is capable of being a troll in some battles.  The same goes for the story which doesn’t have as strong a flow as ‘2.  It’s a 5 star game…but it’s a lesser 5 star than Among Thieves.  Not quite as good in secondary characters, story and gameplay, but made up for with its slightly better graphics.

Graphics: ****3/4 (***** in 2011)

Art Style: *****

Voice Acting: *****

Characters: ****3/4

Story: ****1/2

Music: *****

Gameplay: ****1/2

Overall: *****

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