The characters are very human and believable. Joel and Ellie’s changing relationship was handled brilliantly, with many great moments of Dialog During Gameplay
, and many well-done cutscenes. Ellie eventually learning how to handle weapons, and even becoming playable, was great.
The world is also very well-designed. Posters on the wall, handwritten warnings telling people to avoid certain places, and all sorts of ambience really show a world that was lived in, but is falling apart without human maintenance. I enjoyed reading the many notes and diaries scattered about.
But how about the gameplay? After all, this is a game
There were some nice new ideas added to this game that keep things a bit fresh. You can now “see” through walls, allowing you to detect nearby enemies and sneak up on them, making a mixture of stealth and guns blaring a legitimate tactic. Health doesn’t autorefill, which is ironically refreshing. You actually have to think about how to tackle each situation. The crafting system is also a nice idea, giving a bit more strategy, as players may find themselves trying to decide if a Molotov or a medkit is best for the situation.
And that’s basically it for gameplay. They wanted to tell a story here, and tell it their way. Many moments where you walk slowly because they want you to see their world. Their linear world with only some out-of-the-way areas to explore (which at least reduces the linearity and is appreciated). There are the usual scripted segments where you have to follow a specific path while being chased because the story says so, and the intro is just one massive scriptfest thinly disguised as gameplay. There's not enough actual doing stuff.
It’s trends like this, taking the interactivity out of games, that frustrate me. Uncharted
started out feeling fresh but gradually got more scripted and artificial-feeling with each sequel, and this only continues that bad trend. A real shame. If this game were less scripted, less linear and more open, and maybe randomized enemy placement and encounters a la Left 4 Dead
, it could have been an amazing experience. As it is, it’s just moments of fun combat inbetween scripting and cutscenes telling a great story that you could experience on You Tube