Extra Punctuation: Uncharted 3 Should've Tried Harder

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Uncharted 3 Should've Tried Harder

Uncharted 3 could've made Nathan Drake interesting, but made him a hero instead.

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For once, you and I are completely on the same page. I just couldn't grasp how Drake could have pulled that off in the desert village. Especially after floor collapse number 425.

I like it this way, Drake is in essence the idealistic counterpart to Laura Croft.

I must admit, through the haze of adoration, I did in fact pick most of these points up, though I essentially just cast them to the depths of my mind to continue playing. To be brutally honest, I was somewhat disappointed with Uncharted 3. I still believe Uncharted 2 was much better.

It would've been nice if they gave Drake the "great pretender" arc that the game was kind of steering towards. Just a useless little street punk who measured himself a fake persona to gain respect and meaning to his disposable life.

But alas...

If you would imagine Uncharted 2 to be a vase, then Uncharted 3 is that same vase only smashed into pieces and then ducktaped together by a blind man.

Verisimilitude, what an awesome word. I like it, I plan to use it more in day to day conversation.

You know Yahtzee, you might as well just come out and say you love Uncharted and everything about it. I've been observing this for a while now, and it seems like you trot out all these same complaints every game, but in the end still wind up playing these games through to their conclusion, one after another, where major releases of AAA titles you genuinely loathe seem to be delayed for crazy amounts of time or simply "forgotten" entirely, sometimes with you mentioning it specifically in text in your videos.

Perhaps it's that your ashamed because it's the kind of Cheeseburger and Coke gameplay you claim to hate, or simply that the Joss Whedonesque quippping is exactly the kind of gimmick that you yourself practice and you feel it steals your thunder. Drake sort of being like your Trilby character gone AAA with a better budget (and honestly given that your a guy who has made games about a thief, I've wondered at the criticisms of other games basically about thieves).

I'm not an uncharted player because I really don't get into shooters, but looking at this and your complaints it seems well... like you as a smug bastard should like games about a smug bastard but feel obligated to badmouth them. Or simply "thou dost protest too much". :)

Yahtzee Croshaw:
I'd probably like Drake more if there was a moment when we saw him going to the toilet. But he wouldn't do that unless there were diamonds in the cistern, and then a thug would burst in the window and Drake would have to garotte him with his underpants elastic.

That last paragraph made me literally laugh out loud. And while my family may think it's silly to laugh at a computer screen, judging by the way they are staring at me all cockeyed right now, I gotta say thanks for the giggles.

Yahtzee Croshaw:
Extra Punctuation: Uncharted 3 Should've Tried Harder

Uncharted 3 could've made Nathan Drake interesting, but made him a hero instead.

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It's exactly what made the latest Die Hard movie awful, whereas the first was genre-defining. In the first movie, it's about your basic hard-luck cop put in a bad situation and toughing his way through it -- he's tiptoeing across broken glass, bleeding all over, feeling real pain. And in Live Free or Die Hard, he takes on a damned fighter plane with a truck.

The likely cop-out is that it's not "fun" to play a scene in which you're a captive, or to fight a losing battle. So when you get through the desert, you're back in fighting (winning) form, rather than overtaken by superior non-dehydrated numbers. But other games and stories have done it, and done it so well.

A moment of weakness, a momentary set-back, it's a chance to build the character by showing he's more than just dumb luck -- he can fight his way back to the top when knocked off. What's more, it allows you to continue progressing the story without the "hero inflation" most series find themselves slave to. You can dial things back a bit and progress (again) from there, but with a slightly more humble, slightly wiser protagonist.

But that's the problem. Nathan Drake isn't a character. He has no personality, no psychology. He's a costume with no one in it.

Hooray! Yahtzee wrote an article with a single coherent theme.

Dastardly:
takes on a damned fighter plane with a truck.

That's more of an escalation than a demonstration of valour. Mclane's flawed; it's just always the same flaw: "I'm estranged/separated from my wife/daughter".

The problem with Nathan Drake is that he's so damned pleasant in person but then murders half of the universe to get where he's going. It'd be nice to have something to explain his complete lack of an aversion to killing, like maybe he's an Ex-French Legionary or that he was bullied to much in his youth.

Being honest, I've played through only part of Uncharted 1. I haven't really got why this game is so popular, other than the new-age Indiana Jones idea. For the most part the game itself is pretty easy to guess where/when major action sequences are going to take place, there's nothing to the Prince of Persia/Assassin's Creed style wall climbing (except that in PoP and AC it was actually fun and not boring as hell). The only thing I've actually liked about the game so far came from the 30 minutes I spent playing the Uncharted 3 multiplayer beta. The one level I played was the one where you chase down an airliner then battle for the airport area. Having a scripted event was interesting and added a new element to deathmatch I didn't honestly think would work and was pleasantly surprised.
But as far as plot and gameplay for SP goes, I find myself unable to really identify with Nathan Drake. Despite his resemblance to Nathan Fillion, he's no Captain Mal. Really he's kind of annoying. Gasbag ego characters who act like they know everything about whats going on that you don't is sort of... well.. annoying. I just don't find myself rooting for him in any way. Only reason I even play the game is because my wife got it and the 2nd one for us and I want to at least finish them so I don't make her feel bad.
Sorry, but as nice looking as Uncharted is, I don't get why its been GotY for some people, or why people latch onto Drake as if he's some awesome hero-type, other than the Nathan Fillion complex, which as I said doesn't really fit.

I don't think it's because they made Nathan Drake the hero that he wasn't interesting, it was more the fact that he stayed Nathan Drake. He's Nathan Fillion minus the charm, with the invincibility of John Cena, Edward Cullen's hair jell and the luck of an offspring of a rabbit's foot gang-banged by horse shoes in a field of four leaf clovers. And being smug and annoying may be a relatable character flaw but it's not an endearing one.

Dastardly:
But that's the problem. Nathan Drake isn't a character. He has no personality, no psychology. He's a costume with no one in it.

No, the problem is that he doesn't have an arc.

He has a personality, it simply remains status quo all throughout the games. I would say it's the problem with nearly every Uncharted character. Naughty Dog doesn't seem to be able to write a witty character that can be shaped and molded by the meriad of events he or she's been through. Which is odd since they also made the Jak games.

Yeah, all that stuff about Drake just being able to magically fight just fine when needed bothered me about Uncharted 2, even. As mentioned in the article,

See, the slogan on the back of the box for Uncharted 1 was "one ordinary man, one extraordinary adventure" and in Uncharted 1, he really was just an ordinary man. But then in Uncharted 2, he's not. I once joked that "They might as well have changed Nate's name to Clark Kent for all the times he should have been dead or at least weak" and "I think Drake will be able to fly and shoot laser beams from his eyes in Uncharted 3" because of all the times Drake just randomly was okay despite injuries in Uncharted 2. It's really disappointing to hear that while he still can't fly yet, he's gotten closer to being able to do so since Uncharted 2. :(

the bigest problem i have with this game (besides being son scripted i don't know why the bother making this a game) is the friking motivation.....theres is NONE!!!

in the first one they motivation was to escape, drake himself said that the treasure wasn't worth it at some point, in the second one he has to save that chick i always forget her name....but now?? there is absoluty fucking NOTHING to kill so many people for....we KNOW he wont get al the treasure and live the rest of his life as the richest man on earth. So why the hell does he risk his life and the people around him? he also doesn't care at all for archeologic research, he basically cleans his ass with a 400 years old map, and destroyed THE BIGEST archeologic discovery ever by human kind

Fasckira:
Verisimilitude, what an awesome word. I like it, I plan to use it more in day to day conversation.

Yeah, the article was good enough, but verisimilitude made it all better.

I don't get this complaint at all. It's the hero of the game, you're supposed to feel strong and powerful. That's why I didn't like the end of Shadow of the Colossus, because you spent the whole game killing huge monsters and then you get this helpless sequence where you're sucked into something. It's the same reason I didn't get your complaints on MW3 either. In a game, you're supposed to, oh I don't know, win? You're supposed to be stronger, tougher, and snarkier than your enemies. Making sequences where you're weak aren't fun. In Alan Wake, when you were weak you moved slower, that didn't make those parts more fun. In Mario, when you get hit you get smaller, and that's not more fun either, no, the most fun parts are when you're invincible and can crush every enemy in your path.

Graham Farr:
I don't get this complaint at all. It's the hero of the game, you're supposed to feel strong and powerful. That's why I didn't like the end of Shadow of the Colossus, because you spent the whole game killing huge monsters and then you get this helpless sequence where you're sucked into something. It's the same reason I didn't get your complaints on MW3 either. In a game, you're supposed to, oh I don't know, win? You're supposed to be stronger, tougher, and snarkier than your enemies. Making sequences where you're weak aren't fun. In Alan Wake, when you were weak you moved slower, that didn't make those parts more fun. In Mario, when you get hit you get smaller, and that's not more fun either, no, the most fun parts are when you're invincible and can crush every enemy in your path.

You see, there's a reason why some people don't want to be superman (or don't like the idea of superman): when a protagonist is unbeatable, where's the drama, where's excitement ? It is not fun playing a game with the cheat code on and neither it's fun having the impression that the cheat codes are still on for the story/cinematic/cutscene...

Sometime, for a game to be fun, we're suppose to lose... think about some of the best game you ever played... Aeris died, JC Denton was captured, Alexander and Graham in KQ or Guybrush Threpwood were put into jails, Max Payne is unconscious more or less 3 times per game, your guy(s)'s got blown off by a nuclear bomb (or a bullet in its head) in MW, etc. Sometime, you can be something else then a all-vengeful god of destruction :) you'll see, it's fun ;)

Yahtzee, you may be right about everything that you say but to be perfectly honest, I don't give two flying s**ts. The Uncharted games are FUN games with FUN stories and FUN characters. And that's what video games are all about...FUN. Sometimes I think you lose sight of this fact. Either that or you pretend to lose sight of this fact when it comes time to nit-pick.

I skipped the whole article and jumped to the comment box just so I could say thank you for the spoiler warning. There is nothing worse than having spoilers thrust upon you unprepared.

James Cameron also famously admitted that he ripped the plot of the Terminator from a couple of different stories.

I have to admit the whole getting ship sequance was one of my faviorete parts of the game but as mentioned in the artiule (not to mention every other reviewer and crtic) it didn't really need to be there. It felt like they should have just stuck with either the cargo plane or the ship( it probally would havr worked better if instead the city he washed up in the desert) but naghty dog kind of screwed themselves with this one. They couldnt get rid of the plane it was in the teaser and the actual game box art and they showed of the ship at E3 and since it ended up being one of the most talked about demo's if someone did notice that it didnt work with the overall plot they knew they couldn't take it out other wise we all be here saying what happen to that awesome ship sqeance they showed I really wanted to play that. yahtzee also talks about how the game hints that drake is not who he says he is and nothing comes of it. Uncharted 3 had a lot of plot points beasides this that arent concluded. For example when cutter breaks his leg this whole concept of tarrot cards are introduced and are even put in drakes journal but are never brought up again. it seemed like the script for this game went therw alot of rewrites which might explain the inconcenties. I still like this game regrdless but naugty dog is better then this.

Drake666:
I don't get this complaint at all. It's the hero of the game, you're supposed to feel strong and powerful. That's why I didn't like the end of Shadow of the Colossus, because you spent the whole game killing huge monsters and then you get this helpless sequence where you're sucked into something.

Congratulations, you identified my favorite moment of SotC! Just because you can overcome obstacles, doesn't mean you're unbeatable, doesn't mean you're noble, doesn't mean you need to let go sometimes.

OT, Yahtzee hit so many of my points on U3, both in the review and in this XC. I will always disagree with him on the writing, but whatever. Love to see someone else bring up the desert sequence...didn't make any sense at all, even when stretching your imagination. And the pirate sequence was unbelievably weak (though the ship was so cool).

I'll admit it, I don't own a ps3, so for better or for worse I can't say I've played these games much (just with friends), but I found this article a lot of fun.
If the games' set pieces really are that silly, it does kind of line up with a major problem I had in a few other games and with some films, there's just a limit to how far you're willing to suspend your disbelief.
Even in a world like Avatar, the plot usually follows a linear sequence of events, and while there's occasionally a moment or two that's a bit lucky it mostly makes sense in a blue...cat...kind of way.
I think my favorite example of this has to be Battlefield Earth. There's a scene where the human resistance finds not only Fort Knox, which the aliens haven't already raided, but there's inexplicably a collection of Harriers that still work after a thousand years inside. And then they learn how to use them in literally two weeks.
It just doesn't work, and more than anything else I think that's what breaks my sense of disbelief, and it's interesting to see Yahtzee talk about it for a bit.

Casual Shinji:

Dastardly:
But that's the problem. Nathan Drake isn't a character. He has no personality, no psychology. He's a costume with no one in it.

No, the problem is that he doesn't have an arc.

He has a personality, it simply remains status quo all throughout the games. I would say it's the problem with nearly every Uncharted character. Naughty Dog doesn't seem to be able to write a witty character that can be shaped and molded by the meriad of events he or she's been through. Which is odd since they also made the Jak games.

I guess that's sort of what I mean. He has a "type." It's not really the same as a personality. A pile of meat has a "food group," but it isn't an "entree."

Personality is something different from a set of characteristics. A person changes and grows over time, either for good or for ill. Nathan suffers from sitcom syndrome -- after all of the "zany antics," you have to be able to hit Reset so that you can start from the same position next time. See also: House.

meromero:
the bigest problem i have with this game (besides being son scripted i don't know why the bother making this a game) is the friking motivation.....theres is NONE!!!

in the first one they motivation was to escape, drake himself said that the treasure wasn't worth it at some point, in the second one he has to save that chick i always forget her name....but now?? there is absoluty fucking NOTHING to kill so many people for....we KNOW he wont get al the treasure and live the rest of his life as the richest man on earth. So why the hell does he risk his life and the people around him? he also doesn't care at all for archeologic research, he basically cleans his ass with a 400 years old map, and destroyed THE BIGEST archeologic discovery ever by human kind

Drake had two motivations

1. Find the treasure and accomplish what Sir Francis Drake couldn't. This lost city was something he was eyeing since he was a kid.
2. Rescue Sully.

I'd say those were pretty important.

Say what you want about Nathan Drake as a character, but I loved Uncharted 2 in large part for how well it told its story. It had a very strong and deliberate structure, and was far removed from the (IMO) mediocre first installment. But Uncharted 3 is not as good as Uncharted 2.

The set pieces are as great as ever, but in the story department, it feels like Uncharted 3 followed 2's formula and structure to a T. See if you can tell which game I'm describing here:

I was excited that the game seemed like it was going to be a more personal story about Nate (what with the childhood flashback and the whole "you got your pride tangled up in this" business), but I agree with Yahtzee in that it didn't amount to much in the end. I'm fine with him being a generic action hero if the plot is interesting enough by itself (as in UC2), but it feels like Naughty Dog missed the mark in making Nate's character more central to the story this time around, and that it could have been better if they'd done more with it.

dnose:
Yahtzee, you may be right about everything that you say but to be perfectly honest, I don't give two flying s**ts. The Uncharted games are FUN games with FUN stories and FUN characters. And that's what video games are all about...FUN. Sometimes I think you lose sight of this fact. Either that or you pretend to lose sight of this fact when it comes time to nit-pick.

Sometimes I think when you rush to defend your opinion of a game you forget that other people are allowed to have different opinions of what FUN is.

dnose:
Yahtzee, you may be right about everything that you say but to be perfectly honest, I don't give two flying s**ts. The Uncharted games are FUN games with FUN stories and FUN characters. And that's what video games are all about...FUN. Sometimes I think you lose sight of this fact. Either that or you pretend to lose sight of this fact when it comes time to nit-pick.

He knows the games are fun he admitted it himself He just doesn't like the writing. Is it so wrong to expect a triple a story to have a well rounded character? Jak from Jak and daxter has a better arc than Nathan drake (Naughty dog made both titles in case you were wondering about the comparison).

I wish you would have mentioned which of the 10-or-so games released in the past 20 days you were going to review next. Now I'm stuck assuming you're going to stick to "Shooter Season 2011" with Modern Warfare 3 and Saints Row the Third (after all, SR3 would let you back into this "villains are more interesting" subtheme you have going on).

Therumancer:
You know Yahtzee, you might as well just come out and say you love Uncharted and everything about it. I've been observing this for a while now, and it seems like you trot out all these same complaints every game, but in the end still wind up playing these games through to their conclusion, one after another, where major releases of AAA titles you genuinely loathe seem to be delayed for crazy amounts of time or simply "forgotten" entirely, sometimes with you mentioning it specifically in text in your videos.

Perhaps it's that your ashamed because it's the kind of Cheeseburger and Coke gameplay you claim to hate, or simply that the Joss Whedonesque quippping is exactly the kind of gimmick that you yourself practice and you feel it steals your thunder. Drake sort of being like your Trilby character gone AAA with a better budget (and honestly given that your a guy who has made games about a thief, I've wondered at the criticisms of other games basically about thieves).

I'm not an uncharted player because I really don't get into shooters, but looking at this and your complaints it seems well... like you as a smug bastard should like games about a smug bastard but feel obligated to badmouth them. Or simply "thou dost protest too much". :)

That is... presumptuous to say the least. I honestly doubt Yahtzee rags on Uncharted due to jealousy or insecurities about his personality.

He rags on Uncharted's plot and characters because people enjoy when Yahtzee's negative. As someone who's played Uncharted, it admittedly has consistently fun gameplay, but the story has some cracks and the main character is pretty annoying, so he focuses on those aspects instead.

Also, your argument falls flat because he absolutely adores Prince of Persia: Sands of Time which has a wise-cracking thief as the main character. If anything, he dislikes these games because they pale in comparison to SOT in his eyes.

Having loved the game, I basically agree with everything you just said. About halfway or so through, they forget about story. The first half is great! Shit's happening not entirely based on pure luck, and crazy magician crap is flying this way and that. What happens? Well, like Yahtzee says, some huge coincidences later, you're in an ancient, beautiful city, doing more crazy shit... And you never learn a God damn thing. I hope if they do make another one (which I don't know if I want them too, even if they've been some of the best games I've ever played), they'll answer some of these questions. We'll probably never know how Toabit does his crazy disappearing/somehow living acts. Overall, I didn't find the experience quite as satisfying in the story/local department. Everything else was up to snuff, but seriously... Why mention his name being fake and not touching up on it? THAT'S PRETTY DAMN BIG IN THE CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT.

I will say this though... if you don't like the game's whitty dialogue (which you are sure to put in quotes), would it have been better to go your route and reference a huge cock or multi-cunted hooker three times an episode I mean chapter?

Glass Joe the Champ:

Therumancer:
You know Yahtzee, you might as well just come out and say you love Uncharted and everything about it. I've been observing this for a while now, and it seems like you trot out all these same complaints every game, but in the end still wind up playing these games through to their conclusion, one after another, where major releases of AAA titles you genuinely loathe seem to be delayed for crazy amounts of time or simply "forgotten" entirely, sometimes with you mentioning it specifically in text in your videos.

Perhaps it's that your ashamed because it's the kind of Cheeseburger and Coke gameplay you claim to hate, or simply that the Joss Whedonesque quippping is exactly the kind of gimmick that you yourself practice and you feel it steals your thunder. Drake sort of being like your Trilby character gone AAA with a better budget (and honestly given that your a guy who has made games about a thief, I've wondered at the criticisms of other games basically about thieves).

I'm not an uncharted player because I really don't get into shooters, but looking at this and your complaints it seems well... like you as a smug bastard should like games about a smug bastard but feel obligated to badmouth them. Or simply "thou dost protest too much". :)

That is... presumptuous to say the least. I honestly doubt Yahtzee rags on Uncharted due to jealousy or insecurities about his personality.

He rags on Uncharted's plot and characters because people enjoy when Yahtzee's negative. As someone who's played Uncharted, it admittedly has consistently fun gameplay, but the story has some cracks and the main character is pretty annoying, so he focuses on those aspects instead.

Also, your argument falls flat because he absolutely adores Prince of Persia: Sands of Time which has a wise-cracking thief as the main character. If anything, he dislikes these games because they pale in comparison to SOT in his eyes.

I think your missing the intended humor here. I probably should have included a few smileys to make the phrasing clear, I usually do. :)

G-Force:

meromero:
the bigest problem i have with this game (besides being son scripted i don't know why the bother making this a game) is the friking motivation.....theres is NONE!!!

in the first one they motivation was to escape, drake himself said that the treasure wasn't worth it at some point, in the second one he has to save that chick i always forget her name....but now?? there is absoluty fucking NOTHING to kill so many people for....we KNOW he wont get al the treasure and live the rest of his life as the richest man on earth. So why the hell does he risk his life and the people around him? he also doesn't care at all for archeologic research, he basically cleans his ass with a 400 years old map, and destroyed THE BIGEST archeologic discovery ever by human kind

Drake had two motivations

1. Find the treasure and accomplish what Sir Francis Drake couldn't. This lost city was something he was eyeing since he was a kid.
2. Rescue Sully.

I'd say those were pretty important.

thas pure BS!!!

1- he destroys every single treasure he finds!!!!! and all that BS about Drake not being his name and him trying to prove something gets nowhere. The "i have to prove i'm better" is just stupid, hell even the rest of the characters says that to him. We have no real backstory about WHY did he as a child wanted to get the treasure, probably the will answer that question in uncharted 4

2- this excuse has been used in the 2 game to move the plot so it kind of lost any impact, besides that how about BEFORE sully gets captured?? sully himself says "KID THIS AIN'T WORTHY!!!!"

hell even the enemys motivation is stupid...money? there is a friking bulding in fire!!! who the hell just stays inside there. May they were under that drug? probably but the game never explains

meromero:

thas pure BS!!!

1- he destroys every single treasure he finds!!!!! and all that BS about Drake not being his name and him trying to prove something gets nowhere. The "i have to prove i'm better" is just stupid, hell even the rest of the characters says that to him. We have no real backstory about WHY did he as a child wanted to get the treasure, probably the will answer that question in uncharted 4

2- this excuse has been used in the 2 game to move the plot so it kind of lost any impact, besides that how about BEFORE sully gets captured?? sully himself says "KID THIS AIN'T WORTHY!!!!"

hell even the enemy's motivation is stupid...money? there is a friking bulding in fire!!! who the hell just stays inside there. May they were under that drug? probably but the game never explains

1. It's not like he went out with the intention of destroying those treasures. In UC1 the golden man was cursed and in 2 the Fountain of Youth turned out to be way more elaborate and was destroyed in the firefight he had. Both cases Drake never intended to destroy what he found but happened as a consequence in preventing his enemy from getting his hands on them. There are plenty of smaller adventures he's been on (Eye of Indra for one) that show him going for less grand artifacts and NOT breaking them.

2. Just because it's been used in two games does not mean it doesn't exist. Your point is that he has NO MOTIVATION not that you agree if it's a good one. Rescuing Sully is a motivation and it exists therefore your point falls apart. Also for the bad guys their reason was not money, it was power and control which was what Cutter said at first and later repeated by Drake.

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