Uncharted 2 – Among Thieves

Uncharted 2 has everything going for it: incredible action, an exciting story, well-rounded characters, and even a multiplayer component that continues to thrill long after the story mode has been completed.

The game doesn’t deviate in presentation from Nathan Drake’s first adventure, it is just a larger and more exhilarating romp in the modern day Indiana Jones’ shoes. The set pieces in this game are just what you’d expect from a summer blockbuster, from war torn Nepal to a train dangling from a cliff. And it all looks gorgeous.

An Excellent Visual Presentation

Naughty Dog has raised the bar in graphical perfection in a video game. It is very possible to die just from looking at the scenery and mayhem taking place around Drake. A moving train has never been as real in a game, especially as it goes from a lush jungle to a snowy mountaintop seamlessly in real time. These descriptions can be seen in screenshots, but can’t truly be experienced until the controller is in hand.

A New Reason for Surround Sound

Uncharted 2 features some uncanny graphics, but they are backed up by the incredible vocal talents of the cast. The actors bring the characters to life, both through voice and motion capture. The entire spectacle is backed by an intense soundtrack and explosive sound effects. Bullets whiz by, entire buildings crumble, and trains derail. This game has ear candy.

Excellent Writing Crafts a Blockbuster Story

No fault falls on the storytelling either. Following the “take something from real life pushed to the fantastical” formula, Drake tracks the steps of famed explorer Marco Polo to hunt down an artifact called the Cintamani Stone. The story throws curve balls quite often, so a a detailed synopsis isn’t necessary. Drake’s adventure stays fresh, has a sense of humor, and the end of the game will not disappoint.

Solid Controls Make Solid Games

Gameplay has been revamped from the first game. The shooting and cover mechanics handle much better and added stealth component to Drake’s arsenal feels right at home. Melee combat is equally as fun. The best part of all the gun play and general mayhem is the fact there is a break from it. The breaks to platforming and puzzle solving are done at all the right times, ensuring that battle fatigue does not set in. The controls for all of Drake’s moves from taking down helicopters with a grenade launcher to making leaps of faith across impossible gaps are flawless. And all these skills transfer adeptly to the multiplayer aspect of the game.

Multiplayer consists of the normal features you’d expect to see, such as deathmatch and a treasure themed capture the flag mode. Players can also play co-op with a couple friends in missions featuring areas from the game and a survival mode with waves of soldiers. There are plenty of modes that any fan of shooters will enjoy. This is where the true replay value lies in Uncharted 2. A Call of Duty style level up system complete with the ability to equip perks (called “boosters”) allows players to continue to grow and unlock new options.

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