Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception - PS3

Game Description: Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception, the third installment in Naughty Dog's acclaimed adventure series finds Drake searching for a lost city in the Arabian Peninsula. New features in Uncharted 3 will include "enhanced backward climbing" and the ability to fight multiple enemies at once.
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Uncharted 3 Gameplay Impressions: From Burning Buildings to the Scorching Desert

Uncharted 3 Gameplay Impressions: From Burning Buildings to the Scorching Desert

By Christopher Monfette - Posted Dec 17, 2010

Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception surprised many with its recent announcement, but the action/adventure title continued to surprise when we were offered a meaty demo of one of the early levels. There really can be no dispute that the Uncharted series has essentially mastered the marriage of gaming and cinema, providing a visually spectacular, action-packed experience with smart scripting, solid performance and tight, visceral gameplay. In fact, the year in which Uncharted 2: Among Thieves released, the game simply couldn’t avoid comparisons to the recent Indiana Jones film, a lackluster failure in comparison to Uncharted’s mastery of the genre in any medium.

WATCH: Uncharted 3 Demoed On Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

As shown in the recently released trailer, the third game in the franchise will be set against a desert backdrop, providing a fresh challenge for developer Naughty Dog, having already mastered jungle landscapes in the first game and snow/ice environments in the second. We’re told that the narrative will focus primarily on the relationship between Drake and Sully with the adventure shifting back to the mysterious adventures of Nathan’s ancestor, Sir Francis Drake. Whether the deception in the game’s title refers to Nathan or Francis – either being deceived or doing the deceiving – is purposefully vague.


But we know for certain that Drake will be traversing the least explored region in the entire globe, the deadly deserts of the Rub’ al Khali, otherwise known as the Empty Quarter. His goal? The very same pursuit as Lawrence of Arabia himself, the famous archeologist T. E. Lawrence: the legendary City of Brass, the Atlantis of the sands, the lost city of Iram. His search, however, will pit him against an ancient group that will conjure Drake’s deepest fears.

While Drake’s time in the billowing sands of the desert will set a new visual landmark for the series – including heat haze, shifting sand formations and even mirages – the level we were shown takes place earlier in the game, prior to Drake’s arrival in the Empty Quarter. Set in an abandoned, over-grown château in the forests of France, the level begins innocently enough. Drake and Sully are trapped on one of the upper levels, searching for a way across the collapsed, rotting floor, when Drake leaps onto a hanging chandelier, showing off Nathan’s new ability to climb and interact with physics objects in the environment. The chandelier twists and turns as he shifts around the base and pushes an old column across the divide for Sully.

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Screenshots

Which, of course, is when all hell breaks loose. A pair of enemies douse a far-off wall with gasoline. As Nathan tries to sneak around, hanging from the top of a grand stairwell, two other men set the gasoline alight. A small explosion sends flames in each direction and the fire begins to spread across the woodwork, seemingly in real time. As the combat beings in earnest, we noticed the fire move across the floor, up a column behind which we were taking cover, forcing Nathan out into the open, one hand raised against the heat.

PHOTOS: Uncharted 3 Screenshot Gallery

As Drake and Sully make their way through the burning building – now a full-on conflagration – the changes to the hand-to-hand combat system become increasingly evident. Brawling is now a multi-target affair as Drake can switch between enemies, using a heavily expanded range of contextual moves. For instance, while fighting one thug, we were restrained from behind by another. As the first enemy unholstered his gun, preparing to shoot us directly in the chest, Drake reached forward, pulled the man’s gun-hand under his arm, and forced the assailant to pull the trigger, killing the grappler behind him. The gun was then wrestled free and used against the shooter himself.

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Screenshots

Later in the game, we’re told, a bar brawl might shift in your favor as your attack button will cause Drake to smash a nearby bottle over an enemy’s head, or break a glass to use as an improvised knife. Even this early on in the game’s development, it feels that the combat will offer a robust, but logical set of surprises and “Oh, sh*t!” moments as the adventure progresses…

As always, however, even in a burning chateau, there’s a fair amount of platforming, and the newly tweaked animations continue to impress. Drake can now back-jump to ledges behind and above him, as well as shoot while shimmying on platforms or moving across balance beams. But most importantly, these platforming moments are where Naughty Dog truly gets to blend the cinematic with the mechanics of gaming.

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Screenshots

A simple jump to a nearby ledge can turn into a harrowing moment where an entire wall gives away, falling back across a chasm, seemingly into the fire below. One misstep finds the floor giving way beneath your felt, sending Drake careening through a weakened wall, out into a stairwell, over the railing, grabbing desperately for any surface that’ll prevent his fall into the flaming pit three stories down.

VIDEO: Uncharted 3 Debut Trailer

Graphically, Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception continues to impress. The small, decorative details of the chateau, overgrown by the surrounding forest, really set the scene. Dust-filled streams of light poured in through every crack and window. The spreading fire gave off heat plumes, ash and smoke, moving dynamically throughout the environment. The rapid-fire transitions from platforming to scripted cinematic were seamless, pulling the viewer viscerally into the experience. And while the improvements to the game – at least in this non-desert level – were less visual and than they were contextual, the franchise certainly seems to be moving forward and we cannot wait to see what awaits Drake in the Rub’ al Khali.

Comments are Closed

  • warblade100


    Posted: December 29, 2010 3:57 AM
  • warblade100

    I am betting this title will be as successful as it's predecessors. This is Son'y next epic title after God of war. Uncharted is one of the games I will buy not caring about the ESRB rating on it because I only go for mature titles but Uncharted did something to me that a game in such a genre has to come good in order to get my attention. Game of the year next year!!!!!

    Posted: December 29, 2010 3:56 AM
  • foley1

    "the game simply couldn t avoid comparisons to the recent Indiana Jones film, a lackluster failure in comparison to Uncharted s mastery of the genre in any medium."

    You STFU.

    Read more: http://g4tv.com/games/ps3/6470 6/uncharted-3-drakes-deception /articles/73178/uncharted-3-ga meplay-impressions-from-burnin g-buildings-to-the-scorching-d esert-/#ixzz19PcEm9vG

    Posted: December 28, 2010 5:20 AM
  • ZHughes

    This makes me want to buy the first two!

    Posted: December 27, 2010 5:57 AM
  • kentla57

    ND hopefully will win every award offered, fingers crossed. I wish they would come out with an RPG like Dragon Age, now that would be awesome!!!! Super graphics, awesome story, The list could go on and on.

    Posted: December 26, 2010 9:36 PM
  • linc77

    is the game of the year addition on pre=order yet?

    Posted: December 26, 2010 11:39 AM
  • crushinrussian

    Uncharted 3....will you marry me?

    Posted: December 26, 2010 5:00 AM
  • bricon729

    As long as the story is as good as the second Uncharted I have very high hopes for the third game. The creators at Naughty Dog know what they are doing and I'm sure they will go by the "If it ain't broke don't fix it" agenda that they have been going with so far. I have full faith in this company and look forward to November

    Posted: December 24, 2010 1:35 PM
  • Ronnie74

    Uncharted is Sony flag ship you know when this game comes out everybody is getting out the way !!

    Posted: December 24, 2010 4:23 AM
  • lynch dude8

    so many Sony fan boys everywhere. fan boys give gamers a bad name with their uneducated trolling and bias statements. now Im gonna go play 360 then maybe some ps3 later on

    Posted: December 23, 2010 11:24 PM
  • Barbuganot

    What I'm psyched for is the multiplayer. Uncharted 2's multiplayer is great, I still play it.

    Posted: December 23, 2010 1:31 PM
  • DoubleDown4

    Man, I don't know how I'm going to manage to wait for the release date... so much awesome new info coming out so quickly, I can barely handle it.

    Posted: December 22, 2010 5:48 PM
  • saulpimpson

    I hope this one doesn't bring in supernatural enemies in the third act again. That formula is getting tired.

    Posted: December 22, 2010 12:20 PM
  • Chris13579

    Naughty Dogs games are superb. They should add more shooting when your driving. More driving missions and some flying ones too. I love Naughty Dog, this franchise reminds me of Jak and Daxter some. They should make a Jak and Daxter game, 3 or 4 of them.

    Posted: December 22, 2010 12:14 PM
  • turdbucket

    holy crap.

    Posted: December 22, 2010 11:12 AM
  • Scarfo

    The Uncharted series is easily the breakout game title of this generation! Uncharted 1 & 2 literally out shined a lot of hollywood blockbuster summer movies!

    Posted: December 22, 2010 10:33 AM
  • queenofvulcans

    Sick! I can't wait for this game. I loved the part where Nathan Drake jumped on the guy and knocked him down. I also was intrigued by the scene where his foot was stuck and he had to shoot down enemies stationary. Uncharted 2 was great but it wasn't divine perfection. There certainly is plenty of room for improvements. From what I saw, Naughty Dog is trying to keep the series fresh and try new, great things. Even if they're small things....I honestly can't wait for this game. I could be wrong, but I have a feeling that I may like this game better than Uncharted 2.

    Posted: December 21, 2010 8:43 PM
  • smooth_trooper

    Oh look. Gears of Indiana Jones 3

    Posted: December 20, 2010 7:30 PM
  • applzsuk313

    Is Chloe gonna make a reappearance like Elana???.......she was hot.....

    Posted: December 20, 2010 6:30 PM
  • CFenix

    makes me sad i sold my ps3. what a fool i was

    Posted: December 20, 2010 6:55 AM