If you know me, then you probably know I'm largely a 360 gamer. I don't play games nearly as much as I did in years gone by, but when I do, I usually reach for the Xbox controller. It may surprise you then to learn that the Uncharted series is my favorite new IP of this generation. Uncharted 2 was absolutely fantastic and I couldn't wait to get my paws on the third installment in the franchise. So here we are; the Uncharted 3 release has come and gone. Having finished the campaign in just under 9.5 hours, I find myself somewhat disappointed with the overall experience.
Note that I tried to keep this blog relatively vague to avoid ruining the Uncharted 3 story for those that haven't finished it yet, but you may want to bail here anyway to be safe.
Don't get me wrong, Uncharted 3 is a good game. The lovable cast of characters is back and in fine form. The storyline is a pleasant mix of historic facts and myth. So what exactly is the problem? It's twofold for me. For one, the gunplay in the game is lacking. I found the controls and aiming in combat to be slightly frustrating; they just don't feel very accurate. I love the characters and story so much that I often found myself feeling annoyed when yet another wave enemies swarmed the screen.
In addition to the great characters and storyline; a couple other favorite features from the series includes exploring the environments and solving puzzles. The environments are always gorgeous in the series and the puzzles are clever; not overly difficult, but not always that simple either. The frequent gun combat in the game serves only to interrupt an otherwise enjoyable experience.
Another problem was that the game just didn't grab me the way 2 did. In Uncharted 2, there were several moments that just blew me away. The truck that comes crashing through the wreckage, attempting to run Nathan down; finding Marco Polo's crew underground; the helicopter that shoots out the building's supports, sending it toppling over with Nathan and Chloe still inside. Those kinds of scenes stick with you; in fact, I get chills just thinking about them.
I only felt that way about one scene in Uncharted 3: the plane scene. Many others; such as the burning mansion and cruise ship, just didn't have the same impact. I felt like the developers were trying to capture the intensity of the aforementioned scenes in Uncharted 2, but just couldn't quite pull it off.
Plus, you know what? I'm all Team Chloe here. I don't really care for Elena; she's boring. Drake needs to drop her already. Ha!
Maybe I just expected too much from Uncharted 3. Perhaps the fact that I already knew what I was getting into with the game just made it less exciting for me. Whatever the reason, it is still Uncharted 2 that I call my favorite game of this generation and certainly the best in this series.
Anyone else feel the same way? Or heck, even if you disagree; feel free to say why. I'd be interested to see what others think of the game and series as a whole.