Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune is a PS3 exclusive title from Naughty Dog Studios, the company behind the Crash Bandicoot and Jak & Daxter franchises. Given that pseudo-unique heritage, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Uncharted would be another brightly-coloured platform game featuring cutesy, cuddly anthropomorphised characters. Thankfully, you’d be wrong and I will never need to spell the word ‘anthropomorphised’ again. Phew.
Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune follows the exploits of one Nathan Drake, treasure hunter and alleged descendent of Sir Francis Drake, ye olde explorer. The story revolves around an Elizabethan conspiracy theory that during his travels Drake discovered the secret of El Dorado and that Queen Elizabeth confiscated all items related to the treasure.
At the start of the game Nathan is off the coast of Panama searching for the lead coffin Drake was buried in. Morbid, no?
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Nathan is your typical adventure hero type: good looking, well-muscled with a stock of one-liners for every occasion. He’s accompanied on the trip by Elena, a stereotypically feisty journalist for a TV company that is providing funding for the expedition. If only all journalists were so buxom and financially well-off then this games journalism business would be an entirely different affair.
Nathan and Elena recover Drake’s coffin from the bottom of the ocean and opens it to find that it’s empty apart from a small notebook detailing the location of the fabled El Dorado treasure.
Just as this happens, our gallant hero is interrupted by a pirate raid which throws you, as the player, right into the thick of it for the first time. Without any preamble or tutorial level, the first action you take as you pick up the controller is to fight off a horde of ravening modern day pirates. Brilliant.
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Your boat is destroyed in the ensuing battle, but luckily you have time to call Victor "Sully" Sullivan, your treasure-hunting buddy who captains a hardy sea-plane.
The story that unfolds is one that Indiana Jones or Lara Croft would be proud of, though we’ll try to be spoiler-free. The plot contains crosses and double-crosses, an English bad guy, friends that return from the dead, exploration, explosions and zombie Nazis.
Hell, forget everything I just wrote. This game contains zombie Nazis: what more do you want from a game, people?