Monday, 13 October 2014

"Uncharted 2 : Among Thieves" - Absolutely Nail-Biting From The Get-Go!

I stumbled across an article on the web that listed some of the best opening scenes and gameplay of the last few years and it featured the opening stage of Uncharted 2: Among Thieves.
I watched this footage, which is interspersed with cut-scenes and actual gameplay and I was riveted. I played the video again for my son to have a look at and when it was over, he looked at me, I looked at him, and then I called out to my wife; "We'll be back in half an hour!" before grabbing my son and my car keys. We headed to EB Games at a nearby shopping centre and found a pre-owned copy of this game. I had already played the first game in this series and, while I enjoyed it, I found it a little too heavy with the shoot-outs.

With this sequel, however, there's a little more figuring out of obstacles and ways into hidden temples, which is good. It counter-balances against all the gun-play. There are 26 stages in this game. I'm up to Stage 18 after going through a wonderful level which takes place on a moving train. I'm now trying to dodge machine gun fire from a tank and I have no idea as to how I'm going to survive this level. There must be an RPG launcher around here somewhere. This happens to me from time to time. I can spend up to three weeks stuck on a particular level of a game before figuring a way out.
Certainly getting my eighteen bucks worth, that's for sure.

This game was released in 2009 and, by this stage, console gaming had definitely come a long way. Game developers had long been devoting time, thought and energy to every aspect of the game, making it an immersive and cinematic experience. Despite the fact that console games are all made up of ones and zeroes on a computer, many film-making techniques are used in the way the story is told in between all the running, jumping, climbing, etc. The camera angles, use of music, and the way that both we, the player, and the in-game characters see things as they unfold all owe their origins to methods employed by Hollywood film-makers over the past twenty or thirty years.

The story concerns a fortune hunter named Nathan Drake, a direct descendant of Sir Francis Drake, and he's sort of a cross between Indiana Jones and the Malcolm Reynolds character from TV's Firefly series by Joss Whedon. Sure, this game series owes a debt to Lara Croft and Tomb Raider, but Drake is a well drawn character in his own right, complete with Indy-style pluck and a wise-cracking mouth.
He's on a quest to find an artifact from one of Marco Polo's ships and needless to say, there are other, less honourable people after it as well.
I've been knocking out assignments for the last three weeks, so this is a pleasant diversion. I think I'll re-draft this latest assignment before having another crack at evading that crazy tank.

In the meantime, here's the YouTube video of that opening level. Expertly played, too!
The first 50 seconds is the game loading up, so skip ahead to 0:51.

                                                      Video uploaded to YouTube 9/10/2009 by HassanAlHajry 

 Thanks for reading!

P.S. - To see more footage of this and other games, check out;
                                                                                                    HH Gaming Channel on YouTube

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