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Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

November 24th, 2009 by Crossfire

Nathan Drake gets all the fun – girls, adventure but he never forgoes the treasure…well he’d like you to think that. Like Indiana Jones before him, Nate has a playground-world built around his psyche and in Uncharted 2 that world is a glorious spectacle of exotic locations, gun-play, love triangles and sometimes, double-cross.

Uncharted 2 follows on 2 years after the conclusion of the story in Uncharted Drake’s Fortune. It sees our charming hero travel the continents via a storyline unraveled, in part, as a playable flashback for the first half of the game. This new Drake adventure revolves around an unsolved historical mystery: the doomed voyage home of Marco Polo from China in 1292 and of course, the lure of unclaimed and uncharted treasures.

That being said, the journey the player is taken on, is a bright gem of single-player gaming and it is very, very hard to fault. There is something very charming and fulfilling drawn from the characterization of the cast in Uncharted 2. Both Nolan North(Nathan Drake) and Emily Rose(Elena Fisher) are outstanding in their voice work for the lead characters but the support work from the rest of the cast comes close to matching their master class.

But what of the game play itself? Story alone does not make a videogame ‘essential’ and a peppering of great visuals and game-play action is needed to flavor the whole experience for the player’s delight.

In Uncharted 2 there is nothing but the best elements taken from Uncharted Drake’s Fortune with additions to the existing cover system – you can now blind-fire, unarmed combat – stealth moves and take-downs, and a richer array of varying puzzles to solve – that break up the gun-play and action just enough without spoiling the games pacing. There’s not a better told single-player game, released in 2009, that holds all the elements of a classic videogame adventure together so well as Uncharted 2: Among Thieves does so effortlessly.

Those who love their multiplayer action and looking for a time-out from more militaristic pursuits(see Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2), should be satisfied with an inclusion of co-operative and competitive modes to Uncharted 2. Players are granted a leveling system not dissimilar to that of the Modern Warfare titles, within a variety of game play modes from Gold Rush – a cooperative mode of play where 2–3 players must team up to obtain a treasure, to the standard fare of Death match – featuring two teams of five, with one team acting as heroes and the other as villains.

Congratulations must go to Naughty Dog for developing such a polished but riotously fun game in this the second installment of the Uncharted IP – I do hope there’s at least a third installment to come. It would possibly make Uncharted the best video gaming trilogy and perfect for anyone owning a PS3 in the years to come.

9/10

David Osbon.

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