I’m a big fan of Uncharted. Actually, I’m a big fan of Naughty Dog. This guys are masters of their craft. They launched their new game, Uncharted The Lost Legacy, last August, and for the past couple of weeks I’ve been playing it. Now that I’ve finished it, I can say that anyone that ever enjoyed an Uncharted game is going to have a great time.
The origin of The Lost Legacy
There were some reasons to not be sure about this. The Lost Legacy is a bit of a weird case inside the story of ND and the Uncharted series. The project was born as a DLC, an expansion to the original Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, one of my favorite games of last year. As they kept working on the project, the game grew in size to the point of becoming a standalone release.
— Naughty Dog (@Naughty_Dog) August 22, 2017
All this is important to understand some of the characteristics of the game. To start, its duration. I’ve needed 9:29 hours to finish the game. Pretty good compared to the original trilogy, but far behind Uncharted 4. Another thing is the absolute absence of new mechanics or situations. The game continues the gameplay seen in U4, with no differences at all. This is not bad, as the series has mastered the action-adventure movie-like genre.
Chloe and Nadine
The biggest difference with other games in the series is that this time we forget about Nathan Drake. He is completely absent from the game (except for a couple of comments about him). The main character here is Chloe Frazer, character introduced in Uncharted 2. In this game, she is as charismatic as Drake can be and, as the story develops, we learn more about her, her past and her motivations. It’s a breath of fresh air for the series, and I wouldn’t mind if they keep her as the protagonist for the next couple of games (if they do any).
This time, the partner role falls into Nadine’s Ross hands, one of the antagonists of U4. The personal situation of Nadine gets her to collaborate with Chloe, something that in other time would have been unlikely. The chemistry between both characters is pretty good, and the relationship of this new duo is well developed during the game. Nadine is a character with a lot of anger after what happened in the previous game, and is great to see her change as the relationship between them evolves.
Uncharted The Lost Legacy
The game is set in India, with Chloe and Nadine searching for an old relic called the Tusk of Ganesha. This will lead us to explore the jungles of India while we fight the rebels of Asav. This guy is fighting against the government, trying to start a revolution and transforming an unknown region of India (they are never specific about where is set) into a war zone. For a reason (that I’m not going to spoil), he is also searching for the Tusk, and it will cross in the path of our characters a few times.
The game does an effort on explaining aspects of the Indian culture that are relevant to the story of the game. It explains relationships of some of the gods and some of their legends. I’ve checked with my “expert” in Indian affairs and it seems to be pretty accurate.
Nothing new but…
As I mentioned before, the gameplay is basically the same we saw in Uncharted 4. The rope and the “climbing knife” are back. The platform sections and puzzles make good use of this abilities, what brings variety to those parts. Again, we can use stealth or direct action to fight against our enemies. All of those elements are present and work as well as they did before.
Naughty Dog keeps experimenting with semi open-world levels inside of linear games, and this time they have done a really good job. Chapter 5 is a big area where we can move freely and do a bunch of activities. The area is full of little puzzles, fights and platform areas and we can do them in the order we want. We saw this in the Madagascar section of the previous game, but this time there are some improvements. As we navigate the area we will start finding some discs that are not simple collectibles. They are part of a big optional mission that can take around 1:30 hours to complete. This mission will require us to fight, solve puzzles, etc. and it has a big reward at the end. It gives the player a reason to find the discs, it feels organic, and it works really well. I want to see ND working with this concept in the future.
On the negative side of things, I would highlight that the physical combat needs to be improved, specially if they keep using it in boss fights. Also there is a continuous sense of Déjà vu over the game. Is not an awful lot of times, but is still there. Also, I feel that the script falls too many times into topics of this type of story. It happened in the previous games, but this time bothered me more for some reason.
A great game
I can’t do anything but to recommend Uncharted The Lost Legacy. It’s not a perfect game, but it is a really good one. It stands on the shoulders of its prequel, but it does it by delivering almost 10 hours of fun and entertainment with outstanding graphics, art direction and acting.
Also it’s important to mention that it was released with a lower price than usual, 30 euros – 159 AED.