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"Sic parvis magna, 'Greatness from small beginnings'."
— Nathan Drake

Uncharted is a series of Action-Adventure/Third-Person Shooter/Platformer video games developed by Naughty Dog for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. The games follow self-styled Adventurer Archaeologist Nathan Drake, a self-claimed descendant of Sir Francis Drake, and his quests to find long-lost historical artifacts and treasures.

The gameplay mixes third-person gunfights, environmental exploration, and puzzle solving. The series is notable for its cinematic presentation, with quality voice acting, fully motion-captured cutscenes and character animations, lush scenery, and Character Development.

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Uncharted franchise media:

    Video games 
Main series
Side series
Crossovers and spin-offs
Remastered collections
  • Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection (2015): A PS4 port of the first three games, remastered by Bluepoint Games. The games are rebuilt with fresh graphics and improved performance, and rework the control scheme of Drake's Fortune and Among Thieves to be similar to Drake's Deception. Some features introduced in later games are also added back to earlier ones, such as the Doughnut Drake skin for Drake's Fortune. A "Speed Run Mode", a new "Brutal" difficulty, and a "Camera" feature are added.
  • Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection (2022): Remastered versions of A Thief's End and The Lost Legacy for the PS5 and PC.

    Other media 
Films and videos
  • Uncharted: Eye of Indra (2009): A Motion Comic prequel. Nate searches for an artifact called the Eye of Indra for a man named Daniel Pinkerton. Along the way, he runs into pirate Eddy Raja and his sister, Rika. Much backstabbing ensues.
  • Uncharted (2022): A live-action film adaptation of the video games, which changes the focus of the story on the adventures of a young Nathan Drake played by Tom Holland and Victor Sullivan played by Mark Wahlberg. Notably for it's incredibly long production time where no less than six directors were attached to the film before being let go. Originally planned to be an adaptation of the first game, later the story changed and reportedly aimed to be a canonical prequel to the games. Ultimately though, it was preferred to have the film saga be its own Alternate Continuity that just takes inspiration from the original games.

Books and comics
  • Uncharted: The Fourth Labyrinth (2011): A standalone Tie-In Novel. Nate and Sully help Sully's goddaughter Jada Hzujak investigate the archaeological discovery that got her father killed.
  • Uncharted (2011-2012): A six issue DC Comics mini-series written by Joshua Williamson. Nate and Sully search for the legendary Amber Room as the descendants of a man Sir Francis Drake accused of treason seek their revenge on Drake's descendant. They also meet Chloe for the first time.


General series tropes:

  • Acrofatic: Doughnut Drake, an unlockable skin for Nate in the first two games (and the remastered version of the third). Despite being morbidly obese, he somehow defies the laws of physics by still being just as agile as regular Nate.
  • Action Girl: Elena, Chloe, Rika, and Jada. Offscreen, Nate and Sam's mother Cassandra was one, and her sons follow in her footsteps.
  • Advanced Ancient Acropolis:
    • Shambhala in Among Thieves.
    • Iram Of The Pillars in Drake's Deception.
  • Adventurer Archaeologist: Averted funnily enough, despite Drake's love of history and the Indiana Jones type adventures through ancient ruins looking for cultural artifacts, that may or may not be magical, no one in the franchise is under any delusion that they are doing anything close to archeology, the protagonists will at best call themselves "treasure hunters" while everyone else would call them thieves. Though ironically Drake would end the series by becoming a legitimate archeologist.
  • Adventurer Outfit: There are several different outfits for each character over the course of each game. You get to customize one in Uncharted 3's multiplayer.
  • Aesop Amnesia:
    • At the end of Drake's Fortune, Nate learns that some treasures are actually dangerous and destructive MacGuffins and No Man Should Have This Power, and that The Power of Friendship is more important than glory and adventure.
    • Yet, again in Among Thieves, he chases the mysterious Cintamani Stone competing with a war criminal, comes close to getting his friends killed, and ends up acknowledging the same lesson.
    • In Drake's Deception, it is Lampshaded repeatedly by Elena and Katherine Marlowe that once again Nate is chasing the trail of Francis Drake, a trail that he discovers Sir Francis had deliberately hidden from history because No Man Should Have This Power (again) and Drake once again learns that obsessions can be self-destructive and Sully finally spells it out slowly that The Power of Friendship and The Power of Love is the only real thing that counts. Considering that the fourth game takes place several years later with a long-retired Drake, this last intervention seemed to have had stronger effect.
  • A.K.A.-47: With very few exceptions, most commonly the actual AK-47note , weapons in the games are given fake names.
    • Sometimes, the names are based on their real names...
      • The first and second game's "Desert-5", a Desert Eagle.
      • The Micro Uzi as the "Micro 9mm".
    • ...or sometimes named after a different version of the same gun...
      • The Colt 653 in the first two games as the "M4".
      • The IMI Romat in the fourth game as the "FAL".
    • ...and sometimes wildly different.
      • The HK416 as the "M9" in the third game.
      • The fourth game's Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30 as the "Copperhead SR7" and "Mettler M-30" respectively.
  • All Myths Are True: The series has a combination of this and Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane, where each adventure features an encounter with something that establishes the myths and legends of the cultures around the world that is at least based on something otherworldly.
  • Almost Kiss:
    • Nate and Elena at the end of Drake's Fortune nearly kiss, only for Sully to interrupt them.
    • Nate and Chase at the end of Golden Abyss.
    • Nate and Jada a couple of times in The Fourth Labyrinth.
  • Alternate History: The games use real historical places, people, and objects to tell its stories, but rarely does it match up with history books.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: New character skins are among the bonuses for achieving various medals.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: If you run out of ammo for your pistol while hanging off something, the game will give you enough for another magazine, so you'll never be completely helpless.
  • Artifact of Death:
    • El Dorado in the first game. It unleashes a pathogen that turns anyone who ingests it into zombies.
    • In Among Thieves, Shambhala's power is protected by deadly Guardians, a tribe who drank from the Tree of Life to become nigh-invulnerable superhumans.
    • In the third game, the vessel of brass holding 'djinn' in Iram — the source of the hallucinogenic agent in Iram's water.
    • Played with in the fourth game. There's nothing really unusual concerning Henry Avery's treasure, but the sheer size and scope of it caused Avery and all the other pirates who knew of it to kill each other out of simple human greed.
  • Artificial Stupidity: In all four games, enemies never seem to react to explosives being thrown at them. While they can react, they generally don't run away when a grenade lands at their feet, nor do they try to kick it away or throw it back at you, even though the player can throw it back at them in 3.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses:
    • Drake's Fortune: Nate and Eddy.
    • Among Thieves: Nate and Flynn, and later Nate and Tenzin.
  • Badass Crew: Nate, Sully, Elena, and Chloe.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: Various famous explorers and historical figures are revealed to have discovered famous hidden cities, searched for (and found) supposedly lost artifacts and treasure hordes, as well as participated in the infamous secret societies of their day.
  • Benevolent Architecture: Oh boy, oh boy. Every single building that Nate goes looking around in is specially built with plenty of handholds just for him to climb around on like a monkey. No structure, however ancient, is safe from Nate climbing around in such a manner, unless the developers didn't add handholds.
    • Lampshaded in Golden Abyss, however:
      Nate: Suspended beams. Makes perfect sense.
  • Big Damn Fire Exit: Nate frequently has to escape burning or crumbling buildings that always happen to burn or crumble in just the perfect way to allow him an escape route.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Lazarević, right before getting brutally slaughtered by the Shambhala guardians.
    • Also Elena, after Lazarević kills her cameraman Jeff.
    • Talbot, after Marlowe dies in quicksand.
  • Bilingual Bonus:
    • If you know the Indonesian language, get ready for a kick when hearing this exchange with Eddy's mercenaries in the first game. The accent sounds more Malaysian, though.
      Guard: Halow? (Hello?)
      Nate: Buka pintu. (Open the door.)
      Guard: Siapa ini? Bicara sekarang. (Who is this? Speak, now.)
      Guard: Ah, tai! (Ah, shit!)
    • Both Eddy and his sister Rika speak unsubtitled Bahasa Indonesian in Eye of Indra too.
    • Also present in Among Thieves, since Tenzin and the entire village speaks unsubtitled Tibetan.
    • Drake's Deception has quite a bit of Spanish and Arabic that is also not subtitled.
    • Golden Abyss has touches of unsubtitled Spanish, including some Spanish namecalling from Nate himself (though Guerro quickly translates it).
    • A Thief's End has subtitled (but not translated) Spanish, as well as unsubtitled Italian.
    • The trailer for Uncharted: Lost Legacy contains Hindi.
  • Bloodless Carnage: The in-game violence is akin to a lot of PG-13 action adventure films, in that there is very little to no blood at all during the action. The most you get is a splotch of blood from a headshot enemy.
    • In Chapter 17 of Uncharted 2, Nate and Tenzin come across a group of wolves mauled to death by a coated guardian. While there is plenty of blood on the ice, no actual wounds are present on their bodies.
  • Book Ends:
    • The first game begins with Elena speaking, and the last shot of U4 is of Elena. Both games feature a coin as the loading screen icon.
    • In Chapter 16 of A Thief's End, a young Sam promises Nathan that the two of them will "go far". Near the conclusion of the game, Nathan tells Sam that they have "come far" before retiring to live a normal life with Elena.
      • Also in Chapter 16, Nate and Sam find a Polaroid camera in Evelyn's house while searching for their mother's old book. The photo taken on it actually shows up in the Epilogue, in the same book Nate and Sam left Evelyn's house with, making this a literal "book" ending.
    • At the conclusion of Drake's Fortune, Nathan and Elena try to share a moment only moments after killing Navarro. Before this can happen, Sully shouts, "you two got a funny idea of romantic!"
      • In A Thief's End, after Nate and Elena experience a close call with Captain Avery's exploding mummy traps, the two exchange the following lines which are clearly a Call-Back to the first game.
      Nate: Anyone ever tell you, you have a funny idea of romantic?
      Elena: Yeah, I may have heard that somewhere before.
    • Elena is the first of Nate's allies to appear in Drake's Fortune and the last to join him in A Thief's End. Similarly, the beginning of Drake's Fortune features Nate and Elena exploring a Lost City on an island, and the end of A Thief's End, that's exactly what they end up doing.
  • Boring Yet Practical: Overlapping with Punch-Packing Pistol, the 92FS has a good magazine capacity, reasonable stopping power and, unlike the various Hand Cannons offered by the games, has plentiful ammo available.
  • Born Lucky: According to Word of God. If the last bullet is really the only one that actually hits you, all the bad guys must be from the Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy.
  • Break Out the Museum Piece: In Drake's Fortune and Among Thieves, there are a few areas where you can find old MP40 submachine guns and Luger handguns, respectively. These weapons have been laying around in neglect since around World War II. Despite being abandoned for decades in conditions that would render them useless in real life, the guns and their ammo operate just fine. The MP40 comes especially in handy in Drake's Fortune, as it's the only weapon you'll find for a while in the Descendant-infested Nazi bunker.
    • A Thief's End takes this even further, where Nate can find and make use of 17th Century Flintlock pistols. Although they have been lying around in abandoned ruins for over 300 years, the weapons are completely functional, and even come fully loaded with ammunition and gunpowder.
  • Call-Back:
    • Among Thieves:
      Nate: Great, power's out and a girl's trapped. I swear to god, if there's a zombie around the next corner...
    • Drake's Deception:
      Chloe: If you recall, the last time we went halfway around the world searching for a lost city, things got more than a little dicey.
    • Nate calls "Marco" in the pool on the cruise ship, a call back to his game with Chloe in the rooftop pool in Among Thieves. You get a Marco Solo medal.
      • It also turns up in A Thief's End; apparently, Sam wasn't a fan of the game.
      • In The Lost Legacy, there is a part where if Chloe swims in a hidden pool, Nadine will say they don't have time to play Marco Polo, which causes Chloe to chuckle. This also serves to draw a comparison between Chloe and Nadine and Nate and Chloe in the second game, where the former is more lighthearted and the latter coming across as uptight.
    • In the third game, Elena asks if Sully's new plane has enough parachutes for everyone, to which he replies that he's pretty sure it does. Maybe.
    • The fourth one has several to the first game. Both feature a coin as the loading screen icon, and Nate and Elena travel around a jungle together and end up running away from (un)dead people in narrow passageways (descendants and exploding mummies).
  • Car Chase Shoot-Out: Practically a staple of the series and Once an Episode for each installment.
    • Uncharted: Drake's Fortune: Drake and Elena managed to get their hands on the map the bad guys had and make a run for it after Elena busts Drake from a prison. Prompting a chase through the jungle with Eddy's goons on their tail and Drake to fend them off while Elena drives.
    • Uncharted 2: Among Thieves: Drake and Elena once again, this time in a stolen jeep following after Lazarvic's convoy to rescue an ally that's been taken. Unlike the last one, Drake jumps from vehicle to vehicle, both shooting and engaging in hand to hand with some of the mooks.
    • Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception: Drake joins with a desert tribe in riding against Marlowe's forces headed for Ubar. There they must contend against another convoy where Drake can shoot from his horse and leap from vehicle to vehicle to engage the enemies.
    • Uncharted 4: A Thief's End: At King's Bay, Sam gets caught by Rafe's men, forcing Nate and Sully to go recuse him, the chase culminates with Drake and Sam having to escape on a motorcycle with an armored truck coming after them with Drake having to shoot at it as Sam drives.
  • Central Theme: Greed and obsession. Nate and the villains are in search for whatever priceless MacGuffin they are after, for money or for glory and get blinded by it. Nate consistently struggles with wanting adventure while not alienating his friends and family. Although he stumbles along the way, he eventually learns when to call it quits and gets his happy ending. The villains, for the most part, don't learn their lesson. Nadine is the only villain to survive the series because she specifically knows when to walk away from the obsessive quest Rafe is dragging her on when it's gone off the rails, gaining neither glory nor the treasure.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: The Rajas regularly betray their employers or current allies.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Nate is the victim of it in Eye of Indra.
  • Color Motif: Gold. Aside from being the color of treasure (itself representing greed), it also represents rare weapons that Nate can use. Also, some handholds in the games are gold in color.
  • Collection Sidequest:
    • Uncharted: Golden Abyss goes completely nuts with this trope: There are 138 collectible "mystery" items that tell you more about what's happening in the world (recent history as well as ancient), another 100 treasure items peppering the levels (mostly jade and turquoise trinkets), and 141 "bounty" items that randomly drop from enemies you kill (antique Tarot cards, antique Spanish playing cards, old silver and gold coins, and gemstones). What makes it more head-scratching is that, yes, the collectibles are actually canon since A Thief's End's PSX 2015 presentation video shows that Nate used the money to start his business (along with other "trinkets" he gained).
    • The card game Uncharted: Fight for Fortune manages to incentivize getting a 100% Completion by powering up its cards for each treasure you find. Gotta catch 'em all!
    • The Lost Legacy features a sidequest in chapter 4 that, if completed, gives you the Queen's Ruby, a jewelled bracelet that lets you know if any treasures are in the general vicinity. The length and variety of the sidequest almost makes up for the short campaign.
  • Crossover: A DLC pack in Among Thieves allows players to play as Cole (both Hero and Infamous rank), Zeke, Sev, a Helghast trooper, Nathan Hale, and a Chimeran trooper. A Helghast Capture Trooper can be bought as a villain for Drake's Deception.
  • Darker and Edgier:
    • Among Thieves introduces seedier characters and a more threatening villain, Lazarević.
    • A Thief's End is a considerably more down-to-earth tale that further explores Nate and his brother's Dark and Troubled Past, along with how Nate's longing for his old adventurer days causes tension between him, Elena & Sully. Most noticeably, there are no supernatural or paranormal elements surrounding the treasure of the week compared to the rest of the series.
    • Not so much with The Lost Legacy, but Asav's motives are frighteningly real. In short, he's a terrorist.
  • Death by Irony / Karmic Death: Many of the main villains die this way. They are killed either by the treasure itself or by those they wronged to get to it.
  • Death Course
  • Developer's Foresight: During firefights, friendly NPCs will occasionally comment on how you're doing; in Drake's Deception, Salim — himself a skilled marksman — will excitedly congratulate the player if they pull off a tricky headshot kill during the shootout with Marlowe's caravan.
    • The same applies to Sam in A Thief's End.
  • Disney Death: At least one per game.
    • Sully is shot early on by Roman in the first game, but is saved by Francis Drake's diary having stopped the bullet.
    • Elena takes a grenade at near point-blank range in Among Thieves, and appears to have died after Nate and Chloe pull her out of Shambhala, but turns up fine in the final cutscene.
    • In Uncharted 3, Nathan hallucinates Sully's death.
    • This doesn't even mention all the times others think Nate has died.
  • Doing In the Wizard: A running theme in the series, to the point of being Once per Episode. If Drake ever encounters an accursed locale, a magical artifact, a monster, or a supernatural phenomenon, you can bet your hide that by the end of the story it will turn out to have a (somewhat) scientific explanation.
    • The curse of El Dorado (which is believed to have turned all who tried to steal a certain golden statue into monsters) is actually a virus growing within the statue, which is actually a sarcophagus. When the sarcophagus is opened, everyone in the vicinity inevitably inhales the virus along with the dust, which causes violent insanity to the point of appearing to become a zombie.
    • The Cintamani stone is actually the congealed sap of a certain ancient tree which has miraculous healing properties and is extremely volatile, but otherwise a natural chemical. The "yetis" guarding it are actually monks who have lived for centuries by consuming the sap, which eventually caused them to grow huge and grotesquely muscled, putting on bestial costumes to deter invaders to Shambhala.
    • The ifrit note  that apparently destroyed the lost city of Ubar were an incredibly potent hallucinogen inserted into the water supply, which, the city being located in the middle of the desert, means everyone drank it. Since they were all warned that King Solomon was about to unleash the ifrit upon them, they had mass hallucinations of the event while they themselves burned down the city and killed each other.
    • The minotaurs are a failed subject of Daedalus' experiments with an herb that would turn people into obedient slaves, who instead regressed into a bestial state and grew incredibly powerful, to the point of having to be locked down inside the Labyrinth.
    • The "cursed" treasures in "The Golden Abyss" were cast from gold mined near an extremely large vein of uranium, making them highly radioactive.
    • Henry Avery's hidden treasure averts the trend, as simple human greed caused Libertalia's downfall. Everyone who had access to the treasure slowly went mad with paranoia (they were all pirates), culminating in Avery and Tew betraying most of their allies and killing each other.
  • Downloadable Content: Present in the sequels. The DLC is a mixture of free content (such as the Fort map) and paid content (such as the Drake's Fortune skins and map). All of the DLC thus far is for multiplayer, and U4 was rumoured to receive a single-player DLC campaign sometime in the future. This was probably what now exists as Survival Mode, which can be played alone or with friends.
    • According to Naughty Dog, everything in U4 multiplayer can be unlocked by grinding relics, with the cheapest random drop costing 150 relics. None of the drops is a duplicate. note  Yes, this means upcoming content updates and some DLC can be unlocked in-game. However, as this info makes the triple pack seem overpriced note , it's unknown what exactly can be unlocked without DLC. In addition, at this moment, none of the pre-order items are on the in-game store either.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Dying will take you back to the last checkpoint you passed. In some cases, you can actually jump ahead a little to the next one if you die in the right place. Which can lead to great confusion for the player.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: Drake is usually so exhausted and beaten by game's end that the villain has a real chance of killing him.
    • In Drake's Fortune he's jumped out of a plane and fought his way through the island in one day.
    • In Among Thieves He has a gunshot wound and had two full days of fighting. He noticeably slows down for each chapter he goes without rest.
    • In Drake's Deception, he's actually at his best, having only fought for a few hours after nearly dying in the desert.
    • In Thief's End, he's been through a shipwreck, been beaten up by Nadine, fallen off several cliffs, and fought a few hundred mercs. Working hard for the money, indeed.
  • Durable Deathtrap: Played with — while the adventuring segments rarely actively try to kill the player, any slippery handhold or misjudged jump can spell a quick, flat death. The puzzles often involve navigating rooms with huge clockwork systems and complex hydraulics which are always visibly decayed but, as a rule, will never be quite so decayed that Nate can't get past them. There are countless occasions where the loss of one more tiny architectural detail would render the game unwinnable, and just as many occasions where that same ledge or pole will fall off the wall as soon as Nate is done with it — meaning if anyone had tried before him, or if it had rained particularly hard the day before, Nate would have had to turn around and go home.
  • Easier Than Easy: Very Easynote  difficulty. Drake has +50% health and permanent aim assist, allowing him to survive normally-lethal circumstances such as grenades and rocket launchers while possessing rather high accuracy. However, there's no trophy associated with completing this mode.
  • Easy-Mode Mockery: Very Easy/Explorer difficulty disables player stats, trophies and progression-based awards, as to prevent players from cheesing them by playing on the easiest difficulty.
  • Easter Egg:
    • In the first game, in the opening sequence, the wetsuits Drake and Elena were wearing were of the "Ottsel" brand. An ottsel is what Daxter, from Naughty Dog's earlier Jak and Daxter series was transformed into.
    • The recurring "Strange Relic" treasure is a Precursor Orb from the same game. Bonus points for it being egg-shaped.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • Interviews revealed that Drake's "buffer" appearance in Uncharted 2 and then 3 was the intention for him in the original game, but apparently Naughty Dog used an imperfect model, which is why he's leaner in the first game. This is humorously lampshaded by Flynn in the second game, who states that Drake should "lay off the doughnuts".
    • The logo of the first game has the subtitle written on tape, rather than the simpler coloured line and plain text of the later games.
    • The other games have a lot of globetrotting before reaching the central location where the MacGuffin is located, but Drake's Fortune takes place entirely in the island near El Dorado.
    • The controls are slightly different, in that L2 is not a dedicated button for dropping a grenade, and L3 does not zoom in for automatic weapons. The puzzles are fewer in number and far less complicated.
  • Effortless Achievement: Press "down" on the D-pad in The Nathan Drake Collection. Congratulations! You have won a trophy for exploring camera mode! Note that each of the games has a separate trophy for this.
  • Elite Mook: Heavily armored soldiers. They can usually survive a grenade, take two close-range shotgun shots to drop, and though pistols and automatics will drop them eventually. They will just keep walking toward you until they either reach you and kill you (because fistfighting them is completely useless), or suffer from Critical Existence Failure. At least they can still be stealth killed.
    • The djinn from Drake's Deception count as well.
  • Enemy Mine: Almost once a game:
    • Nate and Eddy team up late in Drake's Fortune to fight a wave of Descendants. Eddy doesn't last long.
      Eddy Raja: Nate, in case we don't make it out of here, I just want you to know — I hate your guts!
    • Equally so in Eye of Indra.
      Nate: Well, we managed the job without killing each other.
    • Drake and Harry Flynn in Chapter 24 of Among Thieves as Lazarević forces them to help him open the path to Shambhala. After which they have to team up again to fight some Guardians.
      • The player can subvert this, even though your gun is taken away by attempting to use melee attacks. You get a warning, then attempting it again results in a gunshot to the face.
    • Nate ends up partnering with Dante for part of Golden Abyss.
    • In The Fourth Labyrinth, Nate and Jada have to team up with Tyr Henriksen. When he and Jada get into an argument over their ideals, Nate breaks it up:
      Nate: Just hang on! Do not fight this fight right now. We have two choices, all of us. We go forward or we go back. (...)
      Jada: I'm not going back.
      Nate: Then let's get going. One fight at a time.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: Every now and then, Nate will come across a clue on some ancient wall carving or in an old book or while staring at something completely unrelated, and then poke around excitedly for a while going "Of course!" and "Why didn't I see it before?" and "Then that must mean..." to himself, while the people around him become steadily more exasperated trying to get him to explain what the hell he's talking about.
  • Evil Brit: The first three games feature an Evil Brit or two.
  • Exploding Barrels:
    • Drake's Fortune has barrels.
    • Among Thieves has propane tanks. And exploding tree sap.
    • Drake's Fortune and The Lost Legacy have propane tanks as well.
    • A Thief's End has small wooden barrels of gunpowder marked with a white X.
  • Exposed to the Elements: Averted; even Chloe will wrap up in warm clothes in the colder climates. The only exception is Nate at the start of Among Thieves when he's only in his usual outfit of jeans and a long sleeved top while in the Himalayas. Justified in that he hadn't expected to end up there of all places.

  • First Girl Wins: See the Official Couple section.
  • Foreboding Architecture
  • Foreshadowing:
    • You can hear Descendants in the very first temple of Drake's Fortune. Eddy Raja also complains that something on the island is hunting and killing his pirates quite a while before you encounter what it is.
    • In Drake's Deception, Salim also foreshadows the Djinn, describing them as "men of smokeless fire". Of course, the Djinn are figments of Nate's imagination, but they do match Selim's description.
    • One of the first things said in the first game is that Francis Drake didn't have kids. Nate says that "history isn't always right". In the third game, it turns out his real name isn't Nathan "Drake".
    • Another one of the first things said in Drake's Fortune is that Nate advises Elena not to wind up in a Panamanian prison from personal experience. Said experience is elaborated on in A Thief's End.
      • In A Thief's End, when Sam discusses Hector Alcazar and we flash back to his memory, Alcazar's face is heavily shadowed and dark and we never quite get a clear view of his face. This suggests that Sam made up his entire encounter with him.
      • When Nadine attacks Sam and Nate on the island, she angrily rants about all the men she's lost at their hands since the game began and how she's fed up with the time she's spent scouring the island. This hints at her eventual attempt at convincing Rafe to not search Avery's boat and also her walking away from a job she deems has gotten out of hand.
  • Gameplay Ally Immortality: If you have an NPC ally with you, they can't be harmed in any way. Perhaps to make up for this, they are typically horrible shots.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: During cutscenes, characters are killed or seriously hurt by single gunshots that they seem to shrug off regularly during gameplay.
    • Word of God says that Nate doesn't ACTUALLY get shot in any given (non-cutscene) fight, and that your health is an indication of your luck, rather than your actual health.
    • Lampshaded in Uncharted 4, where the achievement for killing 1000 enemies is "Ludonarrative Dissonance", which is in reference to Nate's Informed Flaw of simply being an Action Survivor.
  • Gatling Good: The GAU-19 available in Among Thieves and Golden Abyss is portable and powerful, if sadly impractical most of the time.
  • Girl of the Week:
    • So far Nate's had a different girl for the first two games, plus Eye of Indra with Rika Raja and Golden Abyss with Marisa Chase. All three end with Nate hooking back up with Elena. Lampshaded when Elena and Chloe meet in Among Thieves:
      Elena: Hi! Elena Fisher, last year's model.
      • Elena even guesses that Drake is a guy like this in the first game when she makes a crack about him having "a girl in every port" (though he does deny this).
  • Glowing Eyelights of Undeath: Skelzor, an unlockable costume in Uncharted 2's single player and multiplayer and Uncharted 3's multiplayer.
    • The first two Warlords in U4's Survival Mode, the skeletons of Adam Baldridge and Henry Avery, possess these.
  • Groin Attack: A favorite technique of Nathan's; aside from just kicking his enemies in the balls, Drake will get creative and slide underneath his foes to punch them square in the nuts.
  • Greed: A recurring theme of the franchise. Many of Nate's enemies would stop at nothing to acquire whatever artifacts or treasure, even if their path is filled with dangerous obstacles such as booby traps, supernatural beings, the treasure contains a dangerous virus or is irradiated, or Nate killing all of them to the last man. Even the citizens of whatever ancient city that Nate stumble upon and the previous group of adventurers who found them died from their greed. Nadine is the only villain who gets to survive the series because she knows when to pack it up and go home, even though a lot of money is on the line.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: During stealth sections, guards don't always notice Nate — even if any normal human would. Additionally, if they think they saw something and their investigation turns up nothing, they'll act like nothing happened.
  • Hand in the Hole:
    • Not actually using a hole, but in Among Thieves Nate pulls the fake out version and freaks out Chloe and Sully when removing a box from the clutches of a skeleton.
    • Played straight in Drake's Deception where you have to reach in holes to look for a lever. Elena and Sully lampshade what a bad idea this might be.
      Sully: Yeah, I kind of like this arm, Nate. I use it all the time.
    • In A Thief's End, there are a few doors that can only be opened by a lever shoulder-deep in a hole.
      Sam: Give it a pull.
      Nate: What? Could be a trap.
      Sam: You're already in there... what's the worst that can happen?
      Nate: Uh, I lose my hand?
      Sam: So we'll get you a nice hook.
      (Nate glares at him)
      Sam: Give it a pull.
      Nate: (sighs) ...nice hook...
    • One of them is a death trap, with a skeleton found on it.
  • Hand Cannon:
    • The Wes-44, a long-barreled S&W 629 Classic that appears in the first three games.
    • The Desert Eagle itself, which appears in every game except Drake's Deception as the "Desert-5". In A Thief's End, it's a multiplayer-only weapon.
    • The Pistole, a double-barreled shotgun pistol from 2, 3, and 4.
    • Drake's Deception has two magnum pistols, the Tau Sniper and the Mag 5.
    • A Thief's End has the Barok .44 magnum.
  • Hanging by the Fingers: How Nate scales ledges. His grip and stamina while hanging is impeccable, being able to hold on for as long as he pleases, and he doesn't even need to have his feet propped up against anything.
  • Happily Married: Nate and Elena seemingly got married in between Among Thieves and Drake's Deception, but separated at some point (due to Nate), which is brought up when Nate and Sully notice Elena is still wearing her wedding ring (which Elena claims she's only doing because it "helps" with her job in Yemen). At the end of the story, after some advice from Sully, Nate responds to Elena's sympathies over losing Francis Drake's ring that he "traded it for something better" and reveals his own wedding ring, at which point the two embrace, seemingly confirming them as husband and wife. A Thief's End shows us their wedding album.
  • Harder Than Hard: The aptly-named Crushing difficulty. Drake drops like a fly if he pokes his head out for more than a few seconds, and enemies eat standard bullets like a child eats candy.
    • The Nathan Drake Collection bumps Crushing down to more tolerable levels and adds Brutal, where enemies take even more damage than on Crushing while Drake himself effectively becomes a One-Hit-Point Wonder. Stealth kills also don't give bonus ammo, and all ammo drops are approximately 1/6th of their standard value. Prepare to Diea lot.
  • Heavy Voice: The unlockable Doughnut Drake skin for Uncharted 2 and 3; aside from increasing Nate's body weight by a lot, it pitch-shifts his voice downward by about 15%.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: Only villains in 2 and 3's multiplayer wear helmets. Especially noticeable in Uncharted 3's multiplayer, where a villain custom character can have ten different helmets... and the one for the heroes requires actual money.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In the backstory to Drake's Fortune, Sir Francis Drake sacrificed himself and his remaining crew to ensure the El Dorado statue (and its zombie virus) would never leave the island.
    • Considering Uncharted 3, he seemed to be a rather altruistic fellow in general, when he disobeyed the orders of the Queen to hide all traces of the location of the lost city of Ubar, where an evil djinn-infested brass urn lay in the water.
  • How We Got Here: Among Thieves starts off with Nate wounded and in a train car dangling dangerously from a cliff. After climbing his way up and fighting the mooks that are still lingering, the game flashes back to what led Nate to get into the mess. And if that weren't enough, once you reach the point you came in at, you have to climb the train again! Somewhat unusually for this trope, it's a little different when he climbs it again, with Nate monologuing and an extended gunfight at the end.
    • Eye of Indra abuses this with intermittent cuts to Nate being tortured by the villain.
    • The first issue of the comic book starts with a scene that isn't actually reached until the end.
    • The prologue of Golden Abyss is a shortened version of chapter 27.
    • The first scene of A Thief's End doesn't occur until halfway through the game.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: It's very much averted, as you can only carry one pistol, one long gun and four grenades. In an even subtler twist, the character models have pockets for every single thing they use in the game.
    • Slightly present in A Thief's End multiplayer; if you happen to be carrying a heavy weapon that's a pistol, your character will store it in the same holster as your regular pistol and they'll clip through each other.
  • Improvised Zipline: Drake often does this. With his gun.note  The man's got an iron grip.
  • Indy Escape: Several times throughout the series, usually while running towards the screen, a staple in Naughty Dog games.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chests: Although they're not in chests, the treasures in the games are often in very weird places, such as an antique watch hanging from the underside of a ledge in a museum.
    • One treasure near the end of Among Thieves needs to be shot at to be collected.
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: Nate can climb just about anything...unless the local overgrowth has claimed it.
  • It's Quiet… Too Quiet
    • Used by the bad guys in Among Thieves when Nate is running around like a ninja stealth-killing them all. They won't notice him murdering their compatriots, but they will notice when you make noise, and then realize how quiet it is...
    • In 3, 4, and The Lost Legacy, enemies will notice bodies of the ones you stealth killed (unless, in the later games, they're hidden in tall grass), and in 3's case, they somehow know exactly where you are, even if you're on the other side of the area from where the body is.
  • It's Up to You: The puzzles, platforming, and so forth are all Nate's job for the most part, even when his allies can keep up with him. Mercilessly lampshaded in the beginning of Among Thieves, where among other things Nate asks Flynn if he wants to take care of the next alarm instead, to which Flynn replies by simply looking at him with a Fascinating Eyebrow.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Rika Raja gets the titular Eye of Indra and sails away without repercussions.
    • Nadine Ross, for all her mischief during the game, runs away from the island with plenty of treasure and ends up starring with Chloe Frazer in The Lost Legacy. The only way she's better than Rafe is that even as a mercenary, she knows when to stop. PragmaticVillainy certainly pays.
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • Everyone in Among Thieves is sick of climbing.
      Nate: I am so sick of climbing shit.
      Elena: There better not be any more walls to climb.
      Chloe: And... still more climbing.
      Nate: [in response to Chloe] Yep, that's usually how it goes.
      Elena: I swear, if I have to climb another wall...
    • A common criticism of the series is the immersion-breakingly colossal number of people Drake can kill (at least 300 per game) without altering the narrative. Kill 1000 enemies in A Thief's End and you'll be awarded the trophy "Ludonarrative Dissonance".
    • A Thief's End also has a great deal in the banter. For example when Nate and Sam reach the colony, Nate asks how could pirates keep it secret. Which is a good question considering how many people arrived and for some time lived there, but we never get an answer.
  • Last-Name Basis: Navarro's first name is Atoq, but only the credits tell you that. With the exception of Eddy Raja, this also applies to the rest of the villains across the first three games (although you at least get to hear their first names once in a cutscene).
  • Later-Installment Weirdness: A Thief's End and The Lost Legacy's new game mechanics, most notably the grapple hook, aerial takedowns, and using the triangle button to reload.
  • Leitmotif: Sir Francis Drake's plays prominently throughout Drake's Fortune and Drake's Deception, due to his role in the backgrounds of both games: [1]
  • LethalJokeCharacter Doughnut Drake, while appearing twice or thrice as heavy, is still as physically capable as the original.
  • Let's Play: Chip Cheezum and General Ironicus have done amazing Let's Plays of both Uncharted and Uncharted 2.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The guardians in Among Thieves. They're big, strong, fast, and jump impossibly far. Oh, and they take a small army to kill. Good thing our hero happens to be a One-Man Army.
    • Also, the Minotaurs in The Fourth Labyrinth.
  • Low Fantasy: The first three games fall somewhere between Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane and All Myths Are True. There are fantastical elements but nothing too overt and could still being seen as having some sort of logical explanation. The fourth game, however, is simply about a missing pirate colony and its treasure.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: In the first three games Drake comes across some sort of cursed item, but they have scientific explanations. Sort of.
    • In the first game we find out that the zombie curse of El Dorado is a plague-like disease born from the entombed body; it acts almost instantly and has no other equivalent in nature.
    • In Uncharted 2 we find that the guardians used to be human, and their supernatural strength comes from one-of-a kind tree sap. Sap that heals all wounds, even old scars, instantly, and makes the drinker nearly immortal. (As for the yetis, they're guardians in suits.)
    • In Uncharted 3 we find out that an ancient cursed city actually had its water supply, the only water for hundreds of miles, tainted with a powerful hallucinogenic. The source in myth is a brass urn with djinn trapped inside by King Solomon — whether or not this is true is unknown since while we see the urn covered in sigils and still fully sealed, it is sunk to the bottom of a cavern before it can be investigated.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • The mountain in Borneo in Among Thieves. It's likely that the mountain in question is Mount Kinabalu, the tallest mountain on the island. The name is thought by some to have come from a shortened version of the phrase "Aki Nabalu," which means "revered place of the dead." Considering what they end up finding there, it's pretty appropriate.
    • A Thief's End itself, given that it refers to the fact that this title is the Grand Finale to the Uncharted series (well, for Nate) and that it refers to Nate's treasure hunting career coming to an end. Likewise, Saint Dismas, the penitent thief, is a symbol throughout the game, and when Sam and Nate reach the treasury room of Libertalia, they find the pirate founders' portraits defaced with the word "Thief".
    • Cassie Drake is named after her grandmother, Cassandra Morgan.
  • Men Are the Expendable Gender: There are no female mooks in any of the games. The main female villain in Uncharted 3 dies from sinking into sand rather than being fought by Nate; like in the first two games; Drake fights her male sidekick instead. In Uncharted 4, Nadine Ross does not employ any women for some reason, and the main characters are reluctant to kill her at first — feelings that are not shown to the male enemies in the game.
    • Downplayed in Uncharted 4 multiplayer with NPC sidekicks, some of whom are female (including hunters).
  • Motion Capture: Taken a step further, with the actors doing the motion capture themselves and recording dialogue at the same time (except for Tenzin in Uncharted 2, who is motion captured by Robin Atkin Downes but voiced by Phema Dhondup). This gives their interactions a much greater chemistry, as they aren't just sitting in a chair recording their lines. It also speaks to the talent of the actors, who had only the most basic props to work with amidst an ocean of green screen.
  • Mun Danger:
    • Golden Abyss is the first game to have a non-paranormal twist: the underground city of gold is "cursed" with radiation. Nearby uranium deposits have made the gold dangerously radioactive. Of course, the bad guys plan on selling the hot gold anyway, damn the consequences.
    • A Thief's End is the only main game in the series with no zombie viruses, yetis or hallucinogenic brass vessels. Just the biggest pirate loot in history and human nature at its worst.

  • Neck Snap: Drake's (and Chloe's in The Lost Legacy) main way of dispatching foes stealthily is to sneak up behind them and snap their necks.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: The Demon Zombie Spaniards and Nazis from the first game.
    • Crossbow Yeti Psycho Immortals from the second game.
  • No-Gear Level: Several levels see Nate start weaponless, though it's not usually long before he finds a gun, or stealth kills a mook to get one.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Casual conversations reveal that the characters have many in-jokes.
      Sully: How much you wanna bet that if we follow this hose, it'll lead us right to the camp?
      Nate: You always follow the hose. Just like in Montreal, huh?
      Sully: You're never gonna let that one go, are you?
    • The incidents tend to have a bit of foreshadowing as well, such as the following example:
      Sully: You aren't going to get us lost again, are you? This place reminds me of Peru.
      Nate: Oh, you really want to bring up Peru?!
      Sully: You're not still holding that over me, are you?
      Nate: I was fifteen, Sully! You should have known after I met you that I'd end up in prison within the year.
      Sully: Yeah, but I got you out, didn't I? I always get you out.
    • Golden Abyss gives us Nate's dislike of taking the scenic route because "last time we took the 'scenic route' I wound up in a ditch behind the Taj Mahal. Naked."
  • Notice This:
    • Spend long enough in an area without progressing, and the game will invite you to press a key for a hint. The camera will then look at where you should be going.
    • When Drake is climbing, the camera will sometimes swing round to show the next stage of the route.
    • Collectible treasures sparkle, as do guns and ammo that Drake can pick up.
  • Official Couple: Nate and Elena at the end of Among Thieves. And reaffirmed at the end of Drake's Deception, in which they seem to upgrade that status to Happily Married.
  • Oh, Crap!: Nate says this often. He does have variations on the line. They tend to be "Oh, shit", "Crap", and "No, no, no nonono!"
    • Most of the time, when he says it under his breath, he tends to put unnecessary emphasis on the R (as in "crrrap").
    • The end of the 2015 A Thief's End demo (and Chapter 11 in the actual game) ends with Nate, Sam, and Sully celebrating where to go next after a harrowing encounter against the people chasing them. Only to head into their hotel room and find Elena, who Nate had been keeping in the dark, checking their stuff.
    • Lazarević's face when he sees that Drake is leaving him to the mercy of the Guardians of Shambhala is definitely this'
      Lazarević: You don't have the will.
      Nate: Maybe not... [points out the advancing Guardians] but they do.
  • Photo Mode: The series from 2015 forward includes a Photo Mode in each game, including remakes. Using it gives the player an achievement.
  • Posthumous Character: At least one per main series game:
    • Sir Francis Drake in Drake's Fortune.
    • Marco Polo in Among Thieves.
    • T.E. Lawrence, John Dee, and Sir Francis again in Drake's Deception.
    • Henry Avery (with a journey to his home in Scotland and a discussion of his life and legacy making the game a Sidelong Glance Biopic of him) and Jonathan Burns (who's left behind letters and clues about his doomed voyage attempting to find the same treasure in the early 1800s) in A Thief's End.
  • Pre-Order Bonus: Depending on where you preordered the game (if at all), you got different bonuses, ranging from golden guns in multiplayer to extra experience and attributes in multiplayer.
  • Press X to Not Die: At a few points in all of the games.
  • Product Placement:
    • The car ads during the Eye of Indra motion comics.
    • Lampshaded with:
      Nate: You take one of those niiiice-looking je-
      Elena: 4x4s.
      Nate: 4x4s.
    • There is significant attention drawn to Elena and Sully's Sony Xperia smartphones in A Thief's End. It kind of backfires, however, since the phones frequently lose signal and, as it turns out, are easy to hack. Two years later Chloe Frazer has one in "rose gold" (IE pink).
  • Public Domain Artifact: Everyone's heard of El Dorado, but the Cintamani Stone? Iram of the Pillars? Both come from legend, but are relatively unheard of. The Fourth Labyrinth combines multiple legends like the Minotaur and Labyrinth of Crete, Atlantis, and Chinese mythology.
  • Put Down Your Gun and Step Away: Happens at least a half dozen times throughout the first two games. Roman even says it word for word at one point in the first game. Nate finally gets his chance to pull one of these near the end of the second game, but Lazarević subverts it by shooting the hostage himself.
    • Also happens to Nate and Jada in The Fourth Labyrinth. The head honcho pulling this completes it with a snicker, which makes Nate snap and shove him into an abyss before surrendering.
  • Rapid-Fire "No!": A variation of Nate's Catchphrase.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: One-shot kills, no matter where you hit someone, although some of the better-armored enemies can withstand multiple hits.
    • On Crushing, they're two-shot kills, unless you hit the head or torso, even on low-armor mooks.
  • Real Is Brown: The first two games include a "next-gen filter" cheat that parodies this. Played somewhat straight in the third game from when Drake enters the Rub' al Khali onwards, but justified since it's a desert.
  • Recurring Element:
    • There's an apparently supernatural curse that has a scientific explanation in the end.
    • Each game features a Precursor Orb (called a Strange Relic in-game) from the Jak and Daxter series as a hidden collectable. This collectable awards a special trophy when found.
    • One of the main villains is an Evil Counterpart to Nate: Atoq Navarro, Harry Flynn, Talbot and Rafe Adler are all representations of Drake's worst traits.
  • Regenerating Health: Nate's health will recover if you get him to a place where he can't be hit for a few moments. How fast you recover depends on what difficulty you're playing on. Word of God about his "health" being his "luck" implies that Nate is simply letting his natural luck restore itself.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Happens in the second and third games as we learn more about Nate's contacts with various people. His history with Chloe, Harry, and Charlie aren't elaborated on, but they do appear to have at least some backstory together, given the way they talk. His meeting with Chloe and an earlier job with Harry are shown in the comic books. And then there's Sam, Nate's older brother in the fourth game, although it's somewhat justified by Nate presuming him dead.
  • Roaring Rampage of Rescue: Occurs in all three PS3 games and the Vita game.
    • The first has Nate battle through hordes of zombies and soldiers to rescue an injured Elena.
    • The second has Nate board a train and fight dozens of soldiers and a helicopter (again, TWICE) to rescue Chloe.
    • The third has Nate kill an entire band of pirates, infiltrate an airfield, stow away on a plane, and finally make his way through a convoy to rescue Sully.
    • Golden Abyss has Nate rampage through tons of soldiers and mercenaries to rescue Chase.
  • Rope Bridge: Nate and Elena's history with this prompts Nate to declare that he's never crossing a bridge with Elena again. She agrees. Which is even funnier because about 30 seconds earlier there were a bunch of heavily armored Mooks tramping across the bridge.
    • In Golden Abyss, Nate yet again has to survive a collapsing rope bridge. Chase asks him how he managed to not slip off and die.
      Nate: Years of practice.
  • Ruins for Ruins' Sake: Played straight in the first level of Drake's Fortune but amazingly averted in the rest of the game.
    • Played straight in the sequel with the ice temple, and later averted in Shambhala.
  • Rule of Three: Nate, Sully and Elena, and their enemies Roman, Navarro and Eddy.
    • Nate, Chloe and Flynn. At first... Then we get Nate, Chloe and Sully, and Nate, Chloe and Elena near the end.
    • The Fourth Labyrinth gives us Nate, Sully, and Jada. Later, when Sully is kidnapped, it ends up as Nate, Jada, and Henriksen.
    • In A Thief's End, it's Nate, Sam, and Sully in chapters 6, 7, 10, and 11.
    • The Lost Legacy has Chloe, Nadine, and Sam in later chapters.
  • Running Gag:
    • Nate checking out the ass of the person he just boosted up in Among Thieves and Golden Abyss. Brought to its conclusion when Chloe leaves, declaring that he's going to miss her ass. He won't be the only one. Sully is also not an exception. Golden Abyss features an earlier attempt at this with Nate complimenting the fit of Chase's jeans, and Dante telling Nate not to "stare at my ass".
    • Even better, at one point while hanging off the side of a cliff while Elena goes ahead of him, he looks out at the mountains:
      Nate: Oh. Nice view.
      Elena: (sighs) Men.
      Nate: No, I was... talking about the mountains. Really.
    • At least once a game, someone will use a really common idiom only for someone else to have no idea what they are talking about.
    • "Marco!" Usually in the form of an Easter Egg.
  • Ruthless Modern Pirates:
    • The Panamanian pirates from the opening scene of Drake's Fortune, and Eddy's goons later on.
    • Uncharted 3 has a group of these who reside in a ship graveyard in the Indian Ocean.
  • Save the Villain: Drake attempts it at least once per game, though it never works out.
    • During their forced Enemy Mine in the first game, Eddy Raja gets grabbed by a Descendant and dragged into a pit. Nate tries to pull him out, but Eddy gets dogpiled in a second later.
    • Upon seeing Flynn on death's door in Among Thieves, Drake offers him help and a Last-Second Chance. Flynn promptly tries to blow Drake up.
    • Marlowe ends up trapped in quicksand near the end of Drake's Deception and offers Drake his ring back. Drake throws her his ammo belt to hold, but she's in too deep and promptly sinks to her death.
  • Say My Name: Drake's allies will yell his name whenever he dies, and vice-versa. Ditto Lazarević as his fight with Drake progresses.
  • Scenery Gorn: As much as the game loves to show off its pretty scenery (see below), they seem to get equally as much joy out of ripping everything to shreds all around you as organically and beautifully as possible. 4 in particular has some ridiculous scenes of destruction that show everything falling to pieces all around Nate.
  • Scenery Porn: Oh yeah. If there's one area that the series has drawn consistent praise for, it's that the graphics in each game look really dang pretty, with the games frequently being considered to be the best-looking ones on their console.
  • See You in Hell: Inverted, as it's meant playfully when Sully says it to Drake in Among Thieves. Played straight in the third game when said by Rameses.
  • Shirtless Scene: Nate has one panel in the comic books, a shirtless scene in Eye of Indra, and a shirtless skin in A Thief's End's multiplayer.
  • Shoot the Fuel Tank:
  • Smoking Is Cool: Both played straight and subverted. Sully smokes a cigar, and is appropriately badass (and a Dirty Old Man), and his matches/lighter come in handy in both games. Nathan complains about the cigar a lot, though. Even after being in a Turkish prison for three months! Nate's long lost brother Sam smokes too, much to his brother's annoyance. Both Sam and Sully have been clear for a year by the time of the epilogue, thanks to a bet Nate made off-screen. It’s also subverted with Evelyn, Nate and Sam’s mom’s mentor. When they go through her house, you can find all sorts of pain medication for (presumably) her lung cancer. When they finally meet her, it’s incredibly obvious that she’s very, very sick. She can hardly talk but still has time to smoke. She also dies while the two of them are talking to her.
  • Spin-Off: There's a PSP pinball game based on Drake's Fortune.
  • Sniper Pistol: The Tau Sniper in Drake's Deception.
    • The Krivosk-XS in The Lost Legacy has a scope and is pretty accurate. It isn't a One-Hit Kill, but its decent power and accuracy makes it a more versatile sidearm than the Para or Raffica (if not for [[Awesome, but Impractical its rarity).
    • A Thief's End has the most sniper-pistol-y example yet: the Bishai .50 Cal, which is bolt-action. It's essentially a stubby, stockless, one-handed Mazur LDR.
  • Standard Female Grab Area: Averted. Female characters in the series are always restrained by big burly soldiers with guns. In the first game, Elena actually manages to escape long enough to grab a microphone and shout a warning to Nate, after which Roman chides Navarro about not being able to "handle a small girl." Navarro assures him it won't happen again, and pulls out his gun.
    • In the Eye of Indra motion comic, Rika is held captive by a soldier who simply holds her arms behind her back one-handed. It's just an Indy Ploy to get Rika into the room so she can grab Eddy's gun from under the table.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Averted. Nate's actually one of the few heroes who not only can swim, but also seem to enjoy this liberty as much as the player does.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity: Mostly averted, as you get most of your weapons from dead enemies, but played straight at several points in both games and double subverted in the Nazi base in Drake's Fortune. The first time you enter the cafeteria, it's just a large room full of MP40 ammo and no enemies. Then, when you return to the room after turning on the generator, you get attacked by a horde of Descendants and find out why the ammo was there.
    • Sort of present once in the sequel; right before the first fight with the coated guardian you find a Luger pistol on a long-dead corpse that's ostensibly for shooting out the icicles in the room you're trapped in, but anyone who's played the first game knows that whenever the game throws WWII-era peashooters at you, you're about to deal with something not nice. Note that it's not too generous either — if you've already cleared the game and have unlocked the ability to buy weapons to use at any time, they're locked out of this chapter to force you to use the crappy Nazi Luger for the boss fight.
      • Thankfully, the game is very generous, as you have unlimited ammo for the Luger. And, unlike other Hopeless Boss Fight scenarios, if you don't do enough damage to the enemy, you will get killed, so you need that unlimited ammo.
  • Sticks to the Back: In the first three Uncharted games, none of Nate's rifles or shotguns have slings on them. But thankfully it doesn't matter, because they just stick to his back until he needs to use them. "A Thief's End" puts an end to this trend, as the long guns in that game do have slings on them.

  • Take Cover!: A key aspect of the third-person shooting gameplay. The developers said they took inspiration for this from kill.switch.
  • Take My Hand!: Used many, many times in Among Thieves, pretty funnily when Flynn wants to do it for you.
    • Sully says it to Nate near the end of the third game, when Drake is trying to decide whether to save Marlowe from quicksand.
      Talbot: You can't just let her die!
      Sully: The hell he can't! Nate, give me your goddamn hand!
    • More generally, this is often used to indicate bonds of friendship and trust between Nate and his companions, such as Elena, Sully, Chloe, and Tenzin. It's also inverted with Nate sometimes taking their hands. The moments when Nate tries to do this for bad guys, Eddy Raja or Katherine Marlowe, he fails.
  • Theme Music Withholding: In Uncharted 3, the game's action theme "Atlantis of the Sands" briefly plays at several key scenes of the game (such as the plane chase, the Talbot chase, the settlement escape, etc), only to blast in all its glory in the game's final level. To a lesser extent, the main Uncharted motif from the first game appears very sparingly in the second and third games.
  • Theme Naming: Probably unintentional, but 1 & 3 have "Drake" and 2 & 4 have "thief" in the title.
  • The Unreveal: In Uncharted 3, the brass urn allegedly carrying the Djinn is never opened (Nate sends it plummeting back into the depths of Iram's well before the villains can retrieve and open it). What was really in there? We'll never know.
    • This is also true of the first and second game's treasures. In the first game, it's obvious that El Dorado contains some kind of mutagen, but given the fact that it operates in no way like any other biological organism, its true nature remains a mystery. In the second game, the sap of the Tree of Life does heal Lazarević and make both him and the Guardians super-durable, but whether it's magic, mundane made magic, or something else entirely is unknown.
  • This Is Gonna Suck:
    • "Anti-aircraft fire?! This is so not cool!"
    • "This was a bad idea!"
    • "No no no — let's talk about this!"
    • In one instance, Nate is being held captive by pirates, who want him to tell them where the treasure is. Nate honestly doesn't know.
      Nate: Look, you can torture me all you want—
      Rameses: [happily] Okay!
      Nate: Uh, wait. No... I mean...
    • Sam even quotes the trope word for word in the fourth game, when he and Nate have to jump into icy waters a la grappling hook over jagged rocks while fleeing from Shoreline mercs.
  • Those Wacky Nazis: Involved in the first two games' backstories. Justified because Hitler's obsession with the occult means him sending teams to look for possibly mythical artifacts isn't too surprising.
  • Throw-Away Guns: Nate can only carry one pistol and one long gun at once. Whenever he picks up a new gun, he simply tosses the old one on the ground.
  • Too Awesome to Use: There are plenty of one-hit-kill weapons, but ammo for them is rare, so use them wisely.
    • The Wes-44 revolver. It's one of the best handguns, but whenever you find it, it usually only has six shots. If you find another, it's only half loaded. But it kills any normal, non-heavy mook in one shot except on Crushing, where it will kill such enemies in two.
      • The "Tau Sniper"note , basically a Wes-44 with a sniper scope. It's actually more common than the standard Wes in Uncharted 3.
    • All of the other one-hit-kill handguns also apply, like the Desert-5, the Mag 5note , and the Wes's successor in Uncharted 4, the Barok .44note .
    • In terms of long guns, there's the M79 grenade launcher from the first game (which only has a carry capacity of 3 rounds), and its successors the M32 and China Lake. In A Thief's End multiplayer and The Lost Legacy, there's the Harbinger Sniper, an insanely powerful, insanely long semi-automatic sniper rifle.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Penny Arcade, Yahtzee, and Nate himself have all commented on how the mooks are boneheaded enough to get into gunfights with Nate in incredibly stupid situations. Mansion burning to the ground around them? They all try to kill one guy instead!
    • Nate points out how dumb they're being. Regularly.
      Nate: Guys! The ship is sinking! Can we maybe do this later?!
  • Treasure Map: But of course. Each game has one, detailing the steps needed to get to whatever hidden-away locale or treasure is there.
  • Unorthodox Reload: Drake can slide new magazines into his handguns even when one of his hands is occupied with holding onto a ledge.
  • Video Game Vista: Probably has too many examples to list, as Drake and co. are constantly in high-up places looking out over ancient, abandoned, breathtakingly beautiful cities. The entrances to Shambhala, Ubar and Libertalia definitely all qualify, though.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Guerro, Lazarević, Talbot, Rafe, and Asav absolutely lose it at the climaxes of their respective games. Granted, most of them weren't exactly sane to begin with.
  • Wealthy Ever After:
    • Nathan smartly decided to send the golden statue to the bottom of the ocean at the end of Drake's Fortune, but Sully managed to fill the boat up with assorted gold and jewels from the island as a consolation prize.
    • Among Thieves averts this when the fabled impossibly massive sapphire ends up being a big piece of petrified resin, and Sully mentions at the end that the entire hunt ended up not netting anything of value. Compounded when Sully indicates he had to spend almost all of the riches from Drake's Fortune on bailing Nate out of jail.
    • In Drake's Deception, a handful of trinkets are salvaged from Iram before its destruction.
    • And in A Thief's End, the valuables salvaged from Henry Avery's treasure are used to finance Nate and Elena's transition into legal archaeology, wherein they stay until the end.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: The games are noted for their particularly high body count due to frequent gun battles, with Nathan killing hundreds of mooks over the course of the series. But then a boss or mini-boss shows up and the player might find weapons disabled and only hand-to-hand combat available, which doesn't always end in the bad guy being killed.
  • Why Won't You Die?: Both Drake and Lazarević say this during their final battle.
    • So does Asav.
      Asav: You've ruined everything! EVERYTHING! My cleansing would have been beautiful! Why didn't you just die?!
    • Also Talbot in Drake's Deception. The man gets chased extensively, brutally beaten by Nate, and shot in a cutscene, yet he looks no worse for wear.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Eddy Raja, Harry Flynn, Jason Dante and Rafe Adler are former acquaintances of Nate before greed gets the better of them and they are now his enemies.
  • World of Snark: Gets very close, at least. Pretty much every character you interact with will have an opportunity to drop a sarcastic quip. And then there's Nate himself...
    • World of Ham: Everyone in U4 multiplayer is clearly having the time of their lives — not just reliably over-the-top characters like Lazarević, Eddy, and Rameses, but even Cold Hams like Gabriel Roman, Rafe, and Marlowe get in on the fun.
      Eddy: (nervously) There's no zombies here, right? I don't like zombies...
      Lazarević: Kneel before me.
      Elena: I am lighting. It. Up.
      Rameses: Bye-bye, habibi!
  • You Call That a Wound?: Whenever you enter a firefight alongside one of your allies, they won't die unless you get too far away from them. They can even survive getting hit by a grenade at point blank range, something that nearly kills Elena in a later cutscene. Averted on Crushing difficulty: your allies aren't invincible, just very durable. They can and in fact will die if you don't get involved in the firefights, even if you're right next to them (grenades, however, will never kill them).

Miscellaneous installment tropes:

    Uncharted: Fortune Hunter 
  • Art Shift: The game uses an overhead view with more stylized graphics.
  • Death Trap: The main threat Nate faces in the temples, since this game has No Antagonist.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    Nate: Sometimes I feel like life's one big game.
    Sully: Then shut up and play it.
  • Minimalist Cast: The only characters to appear include Nate and Sully — who don't even have their original voices, and speak only in text boxes.
  • Money for Nothing: In a rare mobile game example, if you don't use Mystic Orbs to respawn and instead trade them in for coins, you'll end up with enough money by the end of the game to buy all of the costumes and still have around 20,000 coins burning a hole in your pocket. Especially if you go for Pirate Nate first, since it increases the amount of gold earned from puzzles by 25%.
  • Oddball in the Series: A free mobile touchscreen game stands out pretty heavily against PlayStation-based third-person shooter/platformers.
  • A Winner Is You: Collecting all the artifacts just unlocks some more non-conclusive banter between Nate and Sully.

    Uncharted DC Comics 
  • Convection, Schmonvection: Nate and Chloe happily traipse over rocks and a WWI airplane floating in lava. Nate merely sweats a bit before he actually gets some on his pants, which he pretty much pats out.
  • Evil Redhead: The Doughtys.
  • Lady Not-Appearing-in-This-Comic: Elena is on the cover of the graphic novel, and nowhere inside it.
  • Not Staying for Breakfast: Chloe, only leaving Nate a note.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot: We see Chloe smirking in Nate's doorway at night. The next panel is their clothes and underthings strewn on the floor... and the next few panels are Chloe driving off at sunrise and Nate waking up in the morning.

    Uncharted: The Fourth Labyrinth