Uncharted 4: A Thief's End Review
"The Last Adventure"
Uncharted 4 is the latest in the very highly acclaimed series which picks up a couple years after the last game. Nathan Drake has settled into a regular life of deep sea diving with his wife Elena. Things then change entirely when his brother Sam comes into the mix after many years of being thought dead by Nathan. Sam needs Nathan's help as he has gotten into some bad company over a jail break and against his Nathan's better judgment the quest begins. This adventure takes the two and of course a number of supporting friends across the globe in what's the longest campaign of the Uncharted series. I was very impressed at the length of the campaign and fans of the series will definitely love just how much gameplay the story gives out. There's also a number of collectibles to find once again for those that like that aspect and some interesting unlockables with the SP points you earn. These include great things such as skins to use, special texture layouts which change the look of the game which were amazing and some weapons.
It was also great that they were able to create such a lengthy campaign while not making anything too repetitive in nature and weaving in character background levels to help develop the story a bit more. I did however find some pacing issues with the story at times and that it was truly at its best when it hit scripted cinematic sections. The places you explore across the campaign are also breathtaking not only in the realism displayed, but in the scope as they were so vast. They also did a great job of throwing in vehicle portions that didn't felt like they fit right in and it was nice to see that larger area of exploration that only driving around can provide. The puzzles of the game were also well done being easy going throughout and I suppose they could have perhaps put in a bit more challenging ones as I never got stuck as opposed to times in the earlier Uncharted entries. It was truly impressive how they were able to introduce such a key character so late into the series and still make him feel like he was a defining individual on the lead character. I'm also quite sure that fans of the other games will love seeing how everyone has changed over the years and where the story takes them across the narrative along with afterwards.
I felt that the multiplayer wasn't quite as strong as the campaign in that it didn't feel very different from any of the other shooters out there. Not to say it wasn't a solid and fun to play experience, just felt they could have done something more with it. I was also quite annoyed at the starting tutorials (you can skip them) and that it coddled you to play matches until it felt you were experienced enough to progress. The multiplayer features three modes with Team Deathmatch (plus two variation modes), Command where you hold control points and Plunder where you're grabbing an idol to bring back to base like Capture the Flag. These offer some variation in gameplay though I was still hoping for something a bit more unique. The actual multiplayer action was well done feeling very quick paced and tense. The addition of mythical items to use was interesting though I found the totems to be a bit overwhelming. You unlock extra abilities and such that are available to buy during each match as you collect money. These include things like mythical abilities, extra AI units to help out and supplies. It's an interesting mechanic that plays well into the theme of Uncharted, but not quite so interesting. Aside from that there's a pile of extra skins or abilities to unlock with pirate coins and such which are earned by leveling slowly or purchased as a microtransaction. There's also eight maps in the multiplayer which have some variation, but most felt somewhat awkward with weird splits between them encouraging swinging.
Uncharted 4 is beautiful, it's definitely up there on being one of the best looking games of all time. The environments were gorgeous not only in the levels, but also in the scope of the surrounding world. Moving from each location was also amazing as you never knew what sort of terrain or environments you were faced with next and it was surreal exploring them. Gameplay was also very fluid throughout with lively locations filled with small details, but I did come across some AI pathing issues at times. This included things like people getting bunched up or even some AI enemies running against walls though it was somewhat minimal in the lengthy story. The combat was mostly the same as before with some interesting shooting gallery type areas as the strength of Uncharted has always been the cinematics, exploration and puzzle areas anyways. The game was also much more focused on using a hook to swing around places, sliding from area to area and some climbing tools taken out of Lara Croft's arsenal.
Uncharted 4 is most definitely one of the defining games of the generation and a perfect end to the Uncharted series. It's absolutely beautiful not only in designs of levels, but the outstanding environments that you get to explore. It's really pushing gaming in terms of narrative and world development. I didn't find the multiplayer to be that fantastic, yet a nice side of content to keep you coming back to play. There are many hours of exploration to enjoy and I'm sure fans of the series will be very satisfied with the direction of the story and the end to this thief's tale along with the conclusion for some of his closest allies.
Review Done on Uncharted 4: A Thief's End for Playstation 4
Rating Overall: 9.1