* AlternateCharacterInterpretation: Is Nathan Drake a happy-go-lucky adventurer who regrets but doesn't dwell on the high human cost of his endeavors, or is he a high-functioning clinical sociopath hiding behind a jokey facade, whose friends are mostly unaware of the true depths of his ruthlessness? You can read one argument for the latter [[http://tay.kinja.com/how-do-we-stop-nathan-drake-1595867612 here]].
* AuthorsSavingThrow: In response to the UnfortunateImplications some felt with the first installment having Drake shooting non-white enemies and trying to steal treasures, Naughty Dog made several narrative changes in the sequels.
** ''Among Thieves'' and ''Drake's Deception'' had {{Renegade Russian}}s and {{Evil Brit}}s as the predominantly caucasian antagonists of the respective entries. In addition, ''A Thief's End'' has Drake going up against {{Amoral Afrikaner}}s for a PirateBooty, the lead bad guy Rafe Adler is American, and the seemingly stereotypical Latin American druglord set up as the GreaterScopeVillain [[spoiler:turns out to be part of a lying flashback made up by Sam Drake precisely to appeal to Nathan]].
** Drake's motivations become more altruistic as he is more focused on helping his friends and stopping the villains from threatening the world rather than stealing treasure.
** The sequels also feature more emphasis on heroic non-white characters. Both Tenzin and Salim have rescued Drake from near-death and have plenty of badass moments.
* BreatherLevel: Each of the games have a few chapters which focus on story, exploring, climbing and/or solving puzzles, with little to no enemies appearing. The following chapters often have a lot of firefights and explosions to balance this out, though.
** Especially on harder difficulties, [[spoiler: the chapters with the Zombies]] in Drake's Fortune are this to some, as the enemies have no ranged attacks and aiming is more or less unnecessary when compared to the cover-based gameplay of the rest of the game. The enemies are easy to keep at bay, and despite the lower health on some difficulties, Nate can take at least one hit before being killed by his enemies.
* BrokenBase:
** In ''Uncharted 3'', aiming was changed: the lag between moving the controller's joystick and the reticule moving on the screen was dramatically increased, and there is resistance to movement when aiming over an enemy. Some people were very upset about this, while others accused them of nitpicking. Naughty Dog has released a patch to fix this to a degree, but it's still a noticeably different experience from ''Uncharted 2''[='s=] aiming.
** The lack of multiplayer in the ''Drake's Collection'' remastering. Some viewed the stated reason (Uncharted 2's multiplayer was still being played on the [=PS3=]) as a rather weak reason, especially since 2's multiplayer was critically acclaimed. Others felt the Collection was still worth the money with the three games within.
** The casting of Laura Bailey as a South African was met by some with hesitation (Most notably by Greg Miller, who openly wondered about the casting choice in an interview with Naughty Dog), which others responded to by calling them hypocrites (As black actors like Cree Summer, James Earl Jones and Kimberly Brooks have been playing white characters for years without anyone caring, or that no one cared that a black actor was playing a white character in the 4th game itself). WordOfGod said this issue was an unintentional effect of casting Bailey while the original design of Nadine was still a white South African, before eventually finalizing the finished look, and they didn't want to replace Bailey after-the-fact.
* CompleteMonster: Zoran Lazarević, the BigBad of ''Among Thieves'', is a war criminal responsible for mass murder and torture across the globe, and is working to find Shambhala throughout the game. Invading a Nepalese city currently engulfed in a civil war, Lazarević begins tearing the city apart and killing anyone in his way while looking for clues to Shambhala's location. Lazarević introduces himself to [[PlayerCharacter Nathan Drake]] by killing one of his wounded friends, then trying to do the same to him. Pursued by Drake into the mountains of Nepal, Lazarević leads an attack on a defenseless village in an effort to kill him, murdering numerous innocents in the process. [[BadBoss Shooting one of his own soldiers]] after Nate tried to use the man as a hostage, Lazarević takes Drake's {{love interest}}s as hostages to force him to find a way into Shambhala, where Zoran plans to use its power to make him and his army invincible, then TakeOverTheWorld. When beaten, Lazarević tries to force Drake to [[StrikeMeDownWithAllOfYourHatred kill him and embrace his merciless outlook]] on the world. Viewing leaders like [[UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler Hitler]], [[UsefulNotes/JosefStalin Stalin]], UsefulNotes/GenghisKhan, and [[UsefulNotes/{{Cambodia}} Pol Pot]] as "great men," Zoran Lazarević made his mark as the most evil villain in the ''Uncharted'' series.
* CrossoverShip: For whatever reason, Nathan x [[VideoGame/{{InFamous}} Cole MacGrath]] is pretty popular amongst fangirls.
** Nathan X [[VideoGame/TombRaider Lara Croft]] is also quite popular.
* CrowningMusicOfAwesome: [[{{Series/Firefly}} Greg Edmonson]] did the score for all three games.
** Strangely, though there is an expressly named "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2AfOXddjyo Uncharted Theme]]", that was given full orchestra support and was rather nice, [[OvershadowedByAwesome the star of the soundtrack]] is "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFeBVoEeIwM Nate's Theme]]" - they threw the other one out in the second game and just [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkPF5UiDi4g re-scored this one with the orchestra.]]
*** And it has since been covered by the [[http://youtu.be/Kgk_4MzoOvk London Philharmonic Orchestra]].
*** Nate's Theme in Uncharted 3 is even [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1p_uqbmQeA more thrilled and more powerful]].
* EightPointEight: No matter the score given, every review of the third game has pissed ''someone'' off. Hundreds of scathing comments were made on Eurogamer's site for daring to give the game an 8 out of 10, while detractors of the series aren't pleased at the near-universal acclaim.
** [[http://www.avclub.com/articles/uncharted-3-drakes-deception,64220/ The A.V. Club's review]] and its accusations of [[ItsHardSoItSucks "faulty gameplay"]] prompted [[FacePalm numerous negative responses]] in the comments section.
** The fourth installment intially received an 8.8 from an IGN reviewer. Adding fuel to the fire is that she also gave VideoGame/RiseOfTheTombRaider a higher score. Cue angry messages to her Twitter accusing her of being a "feminist". Worth noting that reviews for the game came out 5 days before the release date, and is not final.
* EnsembleDarkHorse:
** Tenzin in ''Among Thieves'' seems to have quite a fan following, despite most players not speaking Tibetan, even after he first appeared in the second multiplayer beta. It may be because one of his first acts is a CrowningMomentOfAwesome -- [[spoiler:stabbing the shit out of a suited Guardian with a massive kukri just before it bitch-slaps the life out of you.]] Or perhaps his [[NiceHat awesome hat]].
** Eddy Raja in ''Drake's Fortune''. A little bit crazy wise-cracking rival with a (slight) sense of honour? What's not to love? Some people found him more interesting than the actual main antagonist of the game.
** Charlie Cutter in ''Drake's Deception''. He's cocky, sarcastic, and has excellent banter with Nate. He's also one of the better representations of a British character. He's even got a more vulnerable side to him that's just ''endearing'', and fits into the main cast like he's been there all along. [[spoiler: You can't help but feel sorry for the guy when he's tripping balls on the hallucinogenic water, or freaking out about small spaces.]]
** Nate and Sam's mother [[PosthumousCharacter never actually appears]] in ''A Thief's End'', but [[spoiler: the appeal of an ActionMom AdventurerArchaeologist in the 1980s is pretty undeniable.]]
* EscapistCharacter: Nathan. Highly skilled gunfighter, ladies' man, expert in adventurous archaeology, smart enough to know every bit of world history (and language) that's relevant, excellent climbing skills? Check. Average outlook, frequently panics? Check.
** Subverted in Uncharted 3. [[spoiler:It turns out that Nate's an escapist character for himself as well. In actuality he was never related to Francis Drake and was just an orphan abandoned by his parents]]
* EvenBetterSequel: ''Among Thieves'' improves on all the good points of its predecessor, and fixes most or all of its problems. It ended up winning more than ''twenty-five'' game of the year awards.
** ''A Thief's End'' brings in new gameplay features such as the rope and driving, greatly increases the size and openness of the levels, while at the same time featuring graphics and animation quality that really show off what the [=PS4=] can do in the right hands. Coupled with [[ItsPersonal a more emotional story]] and a more fulfilling send-off to the characters than ''Drake's Deception'' offered.
* EvilIsCool:
** Hector Alcázar made a pretty big impression in Uncharted 4 as an AffablyEvil, eloquent drug lord who takes an interest in Sam and is set up as the game's GreaterScopeVillain. [[spoiler:Fans were not pleases when it turned out that Sam faked him and the Alcázar we met was part of a lying flashback]].
** Nadine Ross made an even bigger impression, in that while she does shady things she's also the OnlySaneWoman in the game and cares about her fellow mercs. [[spoiler:Fans were quite happy that she pulled a KarmaHoudini and survived the game]].
* FanficFuel: The insight ''A Thief's End'' gives into Nate's family's history can prompt some players to imagine all kinds of new adventures.
* FridgeBrilliance: Both games [[{{Foreshadowing}} foreshadow]] their twists subtly enough that noticing the hints when replaying the games can cause this.
* GoodBadBugs: The "Skylaunch Glitch" in ''Drake's Fortune''. Rolling on upwards angled surfaces and then hitting L2 at the right time can cause Nate to be launched high in the air. This can be used to skip parts of the game when speedrunning.
** ''Uncharted 4'' has a tendency to break one way or another when being demoed, including Drake clipping through the ground during The Playstation Experience and the controls not responding during a demo in E3 2015. Fans have actually responded well to these, as it shows that the game's actually being played and it's not pre-rendered.
* GuideDangIt: Good luck finding all the treasures on your own, unless somehow you're extremely proficient at finding tiny little sparkles tucked away in every freaking nook and cranny.
* HarsherInHindsight: At the end of the second game, [[BigBad Lazarevic]] tries to convince Nate that the two of them are NotSoDifferent. Three years later, NolanNorth voiced the main character of [[SpecOpsTheLine another game]], the whole purpose of which was to make such accusations more difficult to shrug off, [[WhatTheHellPlayer especially for the player]].
** Nate's quip about nothing being worse than a Panamanian jail in the opening cutscene of the first game takes on a new resonance in Uncharted 4; as far as Nate knows, his older brother Sam was killed during their attempt to escape a jail in Panama.
* HellIsThatNoise: The creepy deep breathing of the [[GasMaskMooks 'Choker' mooks]] in Uncharted 3 Co-op/Multiplayer. If you hear that, you need to run, and try and find out what direction they're coming from. Made even worse if you're playing with someone on the same console; ''you can't tell if the Choker is coming after you or after them''.
** The sounds of the Descendants scuttling about in ''Drake's Fortune''. Made even more creepy by the fact that you can hear these noises in one of the first locations, even if you don't actually encounter them until later on.
** The spiders in ''Drake's Deception'' make this nasty, chattery scuttly sound, and are accompanied by creepy high pitched music. If you hear that noise or music, basically, RUN.
* HilariousInHindsight: [[ChipCheezum General Ironicus]] kept insisting during Chip Cheezum's LetsPlay of ''Drake's Fortune'' that Nate was going to England (due to the map coordinates [=UK2642=] found in Chapter 3). It becomes much funnier when it was revealed that the primary anatgonist/{{Mook}}s in ''Uncharted 3'' are English, and that the game does in fact start in London.
* HoYayShipping: Drake is frequently shipped with both [[MentorShip Sully]] and [[FoeYayShipping Flynn]].
* ItWasHisSled: In the first game, the twist that Sully survives being shot by Roman early on. The fact that he's continued to be a mainstay in the sequels helped with this.
* ItsTheSameSoItSucks: The biggest criticism of ''Uncharted 3''. While the game still received a good amount of praise, most reviewers noted that aside from a few tweaks it didn't really do too much to set itself all that apart from ''Among Thieves''.
* MemeticMutation: Nate's indestructible hair, thanks to his hair [[SpecialEffectsFailure never reacting to stimuli like water, wind, gunfire...]]
* MostWonderfulSound: The level up music in ''Drake's Deception's'' multiplayer, which is a short rendition of Nate's Theme. It'll really make you feel like a badass adventurer.
* {{Narm}}:
** Some of the character dialogue in ''Uncharted 3'' multiplayer can become this, but special mention goes to Eddy Raja's "Goddamnit, NOOOOOO!" and Harry Flynn's "Oh no, OH NO!"
** An example from Creator/NolanNorth himself: the scene where [[spoiler:a drugged Charlie Cutter tries to strangle Nate]] was very hard to do because his [[spoiler:neck]] is ticklish, causing him to [[{{Corpsing}} break into giggles]] and ruin the take.
* OneSceneWonder: In ''A Thief's End'', [[spoiler:Hector Alcázar only appears in one chapter because he is actually dead and the story that chapter tells was a fabrication.]]
* PlayerPunch: Towards the end of the third game, [[spoiler: Sully's death. Nate is [[UnstoppableRage PISSED,]] [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge and he lets the enemies know all about it.]] Thank God it's just a hallucination.]]
* PolishedPort: ''The Nathan Drake Collection''. Not only does it port the first three games to the [=PS4=] in 1080p at 60fps, it also [[AuthorsSavingThrow corrects]] gameplay niggles fans had from certain games, such as the awkward {{Waggle}} and grenade system in ''Drake's Fortune'' and the aiming lag in ''Drake's Deception''. Chances are the only complaint you'll see online is that is doesn't include either of the later games' multiplayer modes.
* RecurringElement: ''A Thief's End'' will be the first 4th installment of a Naughty Dog property to not be a Kart Racer; but, as if to give a nod to their roots, it ''will'' be the first game to feature controllable cars in certain levels.
* SpecialEffectsFailure: Nate's hair never responds to water. For instance, the first trailer for ''Uncharted 4'' shows Nate groggily climbing out of a river. It's very realistic, except for his hair, which is stiff as a brick and barely looks wet. This wouldn't be that noticeable if the games didn't love showing off how his clothes get wet.
* SpiritualAdaptation: These are the best ''Franchise/IndianaJones'' games ever, with the third game getting ads in Japan featuring Harrison Ford himself playing it.
* TastesLikeDiabetes: [[spoiler: The DistantFinale epilogue to ''A Thief's End'']] for some. [[spoiler: Especially the way it wraps up everything so neatly and perfectly. Some fans and reviewers have even compared it to the similarly diabetic epilogue to Literature/HarryPotter.]]
* TearJerker: Has its own page.
* ThatOneBoss:
** Lt. Draza in Uncharted 2. He has tough-as-hell body armor, and needs to be finished off with a melee QTE, in addition to his small fighting space.
** [[BossInMookClothing While he isn't marketed as a boss]], the armored guard you fight near the end of Chapter 14 in Uncharted 3 is a pain in the ass. Unlike most armored mooks who can still be killed with 2-3 well-placed headshots, this guy's armor covers him from head to toe and makes him completely impervious to bullets: the ''only'' thing that can harm him is a Hammer Grenade Launcher, which you have to wait until a mook carrying one arrives so you can kill him and take it. Until then, you have to try and survive the guy as he chases you all around a wide open area with very little cover, and a few rounds from him will finish you quickly.
* ThatOneLevel
** The first game has two segments (Chapters 8 and 12, respectively) where Nate and Elena ride [[ScrappyMechanic a jet ski]] that handles ''very poorly'' while being shot at by several enemies and either dodging or blowing up explosive barrels in their path that will kill them instantly if touched. In spite of this, the first one isn't so bad, due to [[AntiFrustrationFeatures Elena wielding a grenade launcher with unlimited ammo, and taking place on a flat, calm riverbed]], making it easier to move around and find cover to pick off both the enemies and barrels. The second time though is beyond frustrating, due to having them climb up a series of rapids and falls which is constantly making the vehicle control even worse than normal, the barrels are constantly moving down the rapids and some of them can't be seen until right after you climb the top of one leading to surprise deaths, and there's very little cover making it far easier to have multiple enemies pick you off. Elena also loses her grenade launcher for a standard handgun, and while it also has unlimited ammo it takes far more shots from it and ''precision'' aiming to pick off enemies from afar as opposed to the wide-ranged one-hit kill power of the grenade launcher, giving them more time to get a lucky shot off, kill you, and force you to do the whole thing over again.
** The levels with [[spoiler:the Descendants in the Nazi bunker]] in the first game, especially if one dislikes SurvivalHorror. The enemies are very fast, hard to aim at, can kill Nate with 1-2 very quick melee attacks depending on difficulty, love to sneak up behind you to surprise you with said move while you're fighting one of their friends, or otherwise appear from behind corners right as you're about to turn them, you're basically stuck with a fairly weak sub-machine gun through the entire level (so no shotguns), and the level itself is quite dark and mostly lit through your InfiniteFlashlight.
** Gets even more frustrating right after, when [[spoiler: Roman's men are fighting the creatures,]] since the game is otherwise a cover-based shooter, but the creatures will sneak up and kill you from the other direction while you're in cover, and waiting for them to kill each other doesn't work because fresh enemies pour in the further you progress. At least the [[spoiler: Yetis/natives]] in the sequel are fairly easy to see coming and you have allies for many of your fights with them.
** Towards the end of the game we revisit the cathedral. This now contains six Laser Sight mooks and two or three with rocket launchers, all trying to OneHitKill you.
** The finale on [[spoiler: Navarro's cargo ship. The enemies are behind indestructible cover while the cover you are given is not. They're at a range where they can kill you almost immediately. You are not given any grenades. And through it all, Navarro himself is invincible and popping shots off at you with a one-hit kill rapid-fire shotgun.]]
** All of "The Settlement" in the third game. The chapter consists of several gunfights with mooks of all kinds - armored, snipers, shotguns, RPGS, and more, and all at the same time. At the same time, although there's several bits of cover, they primarily consist of several shoddy pieces of rubble that don't hide Drake well making it unfairly easy for several of them to flank around you and take potshots at your backside. To top it all off, the chapter starts you off without any weapons, which means you're going to have to try and get some guns from some of the soldiers you've killed before the remaining enemies, all still armed to the teeth may we remind you, can finish you off, and they'll often do so in a matter of seconds.
** The second part of "Caravan" in ''Drake's Deception''. The sandstorm greatly limits your depth of view and you have to kill turret gunners on Jeeps to advance forward, which wouldn't be very hard if you know where they are before they kill you.
** In 'Golden Abyss,' the river rapids level, while short, is truly frustrating, especially on harder levels. You have to use the motion control on the Vita to move him, and the last several rocks will be your undoing many times.
* ThatOnePuzzle: The 'lining up the body parts' puzzle in chapter 11 of ''Drake's Deception''. The idea is to place a make shift 'torch' into one of ''several'' holes in the ground, and the light from it is supposed to cast a certain shadow onto the wall. You can switch to first person view to line it up, and the guide hints that a shadow should be cast to help you. However in game, this doesn't happen.
** ''Golden Abyss'' has one puzzle involving invisible ink that reacts to bright light. It's solved by exposing the Vita's rear touchscreen to light... and somehow, holding it half a damn inch from a blazing light bulb isn't enough to make it react. And when it does work, the progress crawls along maybe 2% and stops until you get light on another spot by waggling it around and cursing.
* TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot:
** ''Uncharted 3'' mentioned that [[spoiler: Nate isn't really Francis Drake's descendant and suggested that he made up his heritage and he's escaping his sordid past as an orphan whose father abandoned him and mother committed suicide]]. It's an epic twist that turns the whole series on its head, as it casts many of Nate's actions from earlier games in a new light but it's only mentioned twice in a one-off line from the villains and never directly touched on again.
** While ''A Thief's End'' deals with the issue head on and even provides an OriginsEpisode, [[spoiler:many felt that the suggested theory of Nathan being a conman living out a ChangelingFantasy was more meaningful than the sentimental family romance offered in the game, which by a series of contrivances, such as a long-lost brother who went unmentioned (and who apparently even Sullivan knew about) explains away Nate's life choices and actions rather than present a more critical view of it]].
* UncannyValley: Largely averted, but fingers in the second game look very... rectangular. It also seems as if there are floodlights hooked up to the characters' lower eyelids. They constantly have shining, wet look to them, and look rather bug-like.
* UnfortunateImplications: [[http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/zero-punctuation/27-Uncharted-Drakes-Fortune There are some]] who feel the series doesn't exactly treat non-white non-Americans the greatest. The first installment suffers the most for featuring mooks being ethnic minorities and Nathan being the only one capable of doing any actual treasure-hunting and clue-solving.
* VisualEffectsOfAwesome: ''Uncharted: Drake's Fortune'' was noted at the time for it's lush and wonderful environments even though it suffered from a few graphical issues. ''Uncharted 2: Among Thieves'' fixes those issues and gives some of the best graphics you can ever have from the UsefulNotes/PlayStation3. ''Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception'' takes it a step further and refines those graphics to make it one of the most visually pleasing games for the system. Then ''Uncharted 4'' came along, blowing all the previous games out of the water in this department, to the point where most people didn't think the first trailer was actually possible in game. It's considered one of, if not ''the'' best-looking UsefulNotes/PlayStation4 games out there--which is saying something since the [=PS4=] is only ''two years'' along in its life when ''4'' came out, setting the bar ridiculously high for any game released after it.
* {{Waggle}}: The first game forces you to control the throwing distance of the grenades with the SIXAXIS function of the controller...making placing grenades quite awkward. Luckily, this was made optional in the sequels.
** ''Golden Abyss'' is ''made'' of Waggle, with such well-thought-out features as using the touchscreen to zoom the camera (with your finger inevitably covering the scale), the light exposure puzzle, and a main menu that does not respond to the d-pad and scrolls chapters eight at a flick.
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