Gemini73 wrote: Jenuall wrote:Uncharted 1 - 6/10
Finally managed to finish this off tonight, the ending is possibly a perfect distillation of everything this game gets wrong. It's basically one long shooting gallery, from about chapter 20 onward you are just waking along corridors shooting at dull enemies, fighting the poor controls, getting killed by cheap shots and essentially being forced to approach the line up of enemy challenges in exactly the way the game wants you to or it's "blip" and you're dog meat.
The shooting, controls, enemy AI, arena configuration/ challenge direction in this are all just poor by any comparable standard. There are lots of things that the game does well, often really well - it's a nice story, well acted, and it must have looked absolutely stunning at the time, but the overwhelming majority of your time is spent doing those things that the game just does not execute well enough.Really hoping the second game is the step up it's described as because I have no desire to play something of the same quality as this again!
It is a massive step up on every front except for the shooting. ND just can't seem to get shooting right in any of their games.
This is on one level good to know, as being a massive step up is a good thing, but at the same time I'm still worried as the crap shooting is what really killed the first game for me!
There were other significant problems with it as well though, which hopefully they have improved on.
A big one was that the animation was atrocious at times, like genuinely hilarious levels of bad. Drake looked like he was constipated or had serious back problems for the vast majority of the time. His hilarious "pawing at the air" jump thing he does at times is just tragic to watch as well!
The incredible linearity and lack of any real player agency was another killer for me - the whole thing just felt like one long interactive movie where you really didn't have any input into what was happening. The things you did need to do were either really trite (crap puzzles where the answer is always given to you in your magic notebook), frustrating (hammering buttons to open doors, moving incredibly slowly because the game decides that it wants you to for some unknown reason etc.), awkward and badly designed (jumping sections where the controls are so wonky you keep dying as he jumps the wrong way, bad signposting on where you need to jump/climb to next, inconsistent rules about how far you can jump and what you can climb/hang on to etc.) or just dull (any of the shooting really).
Again the final boss was a tedious example of most of what I felt was bad about the action. You land on a boat where you have to move through each conveniently penned off section removing guards and taking advantage of the highly convenient waist high boxes that have been left there for you to hide behind until only the big baddy is left (who you are unable to hurt despite him being right there.
), after which he falls back to the next area (again remember you're not allowed to hit him whilst he's running folks!) where you do the same damn thing again. You've been robbed of all your alternate weapons so there is really no variety to how you can take these enemies down, you can't run in and melee anyone as you'll be gunned down in seconds. So it really is just a dull rinse and repeat of the worst parts of the game - cover shooting. They even manage to throw an annoying QTE into the mix just to try and prevent brain death in the player from the monotony of it all - which as they happen so infrequently in the game you forget about and so no doubt have to repeat at least once.
All of this then leads to the "final showdown" where it is just you and the Big Bad, but RUH ROH you drop your gun before you can shoot him! (
) so now you have to do exactly what the designer wants you to - hide behind another set of strawberry floating boxes, moving forward one box at a time until you are close enough to engage the boss in..... ANOTHER strawberry floating QTE BATTLE!
And then that's it - game done and you get to watch the quite nicely done end sequence. But the player has not achieved anything in this whole sequence, they don't feel any ownership of the victory because it was dull, monotonous, hackneyed, and spelled out to them the whole way and then reduced to a strawberry floating QTE for the final coup de grâce! There is zero satisfaction in the whole thing.
This is also all made worse by the narrative (which in many ways has been pretty solid otherwise) - the guy you are fighting is literally nobody. I don't even know when he appears first in the game but as far as I'm concerned he's just a mid-level grunt, another hired goon amongst a sea of hired goons, why should I give a gooseberry fool about squaring off with him in some final showdown? There is no compelling antagonist in the game, there's the British guy who taunts you a couple of times and then dies shortly before the end of the game, there's the pretty dodgy stereotype of a wild mercenary pirate guy but again he dies and never really earns his chops as an adversary. There isn't anything to focus your attention on, nothing driving the player or the characters into the ending.
If you want to make a movie, make a movie and do it well, but if you are going to make a game then take advantage of what a game gives you - interaction! - and do something interesting with it!
I'm probably going to start the second game tonight, and I'm really hoping it steps up in the way that people have said it will!