Uncharted: Drake's Fortune Review
HDTV options: 720p
Developer Naughty Dog, best known for their Crash Bandicoot and Jak and Daxter series, takes a plunge into the action/adventure setting with this exploration entitled Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. Naughty Dog has been known for their well-polished games ever since their early days with Crash and this one comes as no exception. I'll go ahead and tell you this: it's much more than just a Dude Raider.
The player takes on the role of Nathan Drake, while on his journey to discover the treasure of El Dorado. Nate isn't alone in this journey however. Often times he'll have a female companion with him that will help in shootouts. She is quite smart too and helpful for some of the enemies that Nate encounters.
This game was looked upon as a Tomb Raider clone when it was in its development stages, but it clearly distances itself from Tomb Raider with the heavy focus on action that is spread throughout the game. Firefights happen often and the creators at Naughty Dog really put some slick moves on Nate while he engages in these shootouts. Sure, you have your standard leaning against a wall and ducking behind objects, but Nate performs all of these moves with some unique style mimicking that of an action hero. He has his own unique way of handling each weapon as well.
Shootouts can get quite intense and cover must be taken or you will simply get shot to death. The controls allow for some easy shooting while taking cover - simply lean up against a wall with the circle button then swing out by holding the L1 button. Let go of L1 and Nate will swing back behind the wall. Each gun handles much the way that you would expect it to. Whenever a shotgun is in a game, I expect it to provide a heavy blast with sound effects that will blow me away since the shotgun is usually one of my favorite weapons in an action game. With Drake's Fortune, I am happy to say that the shotgun does just that. Each blast provides a roaring thunder that will knock back any unfortunate mercenary that gets in close proximity with Nate. Way to go for shotgun fanatics, Naughty Dog!
There are a fair variety of weapons available. Not too many and not too few is the best way to put it. You'll find grenade guns, shotguns, varieties of handguns, magnums, desert eagles, and assault rifles among many other types of weaponry present along Nate's adventure.
Nate also has some physical attacks that can be performed on an enemy that gets too close. Nate can perform a few combos that will punch or throw the enemy to the ground. The actual button combination timing doesn't always match up with the moves that Nate will perform, sometimes causing me to miss a combination and allowing the enemy to counter. This isn't too bad once you get the hang of it though - it's only a minor issue.