Review: Uncharted: The Lost Legacy (PlayStation 4)
Uncharted: The Lost Legacy: Official GBAtemp ReviewPlayStation 4 1,272 view 3 likes 10 comments
- Release Date (NA): August 22, 2017
- Release Date (EU): August 23, 2017
- Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
- Developer: Naughty Dog
- Genres: Action-adventure
- ESRB Rating: Teen
- PEGI Rating: Sixteen years and older
Single playerLocal MultiplayerOnline MultiplayerCo-operative
Many fans of the Uncharted series of games, myself included, were disappointed to discover that outside a few references - fan-favourite Chloe Frazer was nowhere to be found in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End when the game released back in May 2016. Introduced in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, Chloe quickly became an iconic and much loved character thanks to her unmistakable attitude and quippy dialogue. Thankfully for us Chloe returns in her own adventure in Uncharted: The Lost Legacy.
You missed this ass
Starring front and center in Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, we get to explore a bit more of Chloe’s character and backstory, alongside Nadine Ross - a more sensible, by-the-books type who we first met as an antagonist in ‘A Thief’s End’. Much like Nathan and Sully, but without the history, the relationship between the two is played out great, with smart writing that gives us insight into their past without ever being spoon-fed information via cut-scenes or flashbacks. Although not a numbered sequel, make no mistake, The Lost Legacy is a direct sequel to Uncharted 4 with numerous callbacks and references. Although there is nothing to prevent someone new to the series picking up this title, I wouldn’t recommend it.
Although starting out as a simple story expansion piece of DLC; the scope of The Lost Legacy expanded during development into a roughly 8-10 hour stand-alone experience. This is a shorter campaign than other Uncharted games but for the price it fits the bill. And while you have your standard collectables to find and photo opportunities during the campaign there is little to no extra thrills outside of the existing bundled UC4 multiplayer.
The Lost Legacy takes the tight core-gameplay mechanics of UC4, minus the fluff, to create a somewhat slower and serene trek through Naughty Dog’s vision of India. You have a handful of the usual trademark set piece moments and a thrilling final chapter that will put a smile on any Uncharted fans face, but overall I felt this was a more relaxed experience with a bigger focus on narrative than the classic rollercoaster action usually met in Uncharted. You’ll be visiting Indian temples, ruins and wilderness alongside more modern structures. Although there’s no glob-trotting in this adventure, thankfully this Indian landscape is beautifully realised and themed with plenty of Hindu-inspired imagery to gawk at.
The core gameplay is just as tight as in Uncharted 4 and for combat encounters it offers both the choice for all-out explosive action or a more stealthy approach (now thankfully with a silenced pistol option). The action flows just as brilliantly as it did before with large combat areas that can be approached from multiple angles and your absurdly long rope is back for swinging across conveniently placed tree branches and poles. A handful of new weapons introduced in UC4 multiplayer are available for pick-up during the campaign.
Massive, sprawling and often awe-inspiring Indian-themed ruins and locations are explored during the game and are the highlight of the adventure. Some can be massive puzzles within themselves while others are just there to pass by - the raw artistic talent and design of these landmarks is the best in the business and you often have to stop and stare. You’ll be mashing your Share button to capture screenshot after screenshot.
I often found myself reminded of the early Tomb Raider games in terms of atmosphere and level design but much, much less in how the heroines are handled as video game characters. These ladies are not portrayed in the same vein as the pin-up model Lara Croft of yesteryear, but with respect and humanisation as Chloe and Nadine act like actual real people put in a tough environment, just as sweat, bruises and scrapes all realistically appear on their character models.
While the visuals astound, if you’ve played UC4 you’ll find a strong feeling of deja vu is carried throughout this adventure and while that’s not unusual for what was conceived as a story expansion you can’t help but shake the feeling you’ve done this all before. There are a handful of new puzzles and ideas, and the new music tracks, more ambient in nature, do provide some differentiation and are of the standard Naughty Dog quality, The Lost Legacy never really stood out to me in a way that you could call its own. That doesn't mean it's not fun though, it certainly is and with a shorter campaign and little "filler" it almost feels like a "best-of" Uncharted, with the concept buffed to a sheen.
While there was a promise of more open-world gameplay during a longer chapter in the game, it’s not really open world in a sense that there is anything other to do besides the main objectives. You can tackle these in any order you like but I never found this choice to be of importance, the story remained unaffected by the route you take and there is little reason to go off the beaten path. The world, while beautiful is mostly empty and I found more collectables and photo opportunities during the linear chapters of the game.
Like Uncharted 4 you get to drive a jeep around which, given the size of the open-world area, is a very good thing, though I never really found the driving in The Lost Legacy nor UC4 particularly enjoyable outside of the linear action set-pieces which see you driving forward a clear path making for a faster paced and more exciting spectacle. While it works, the driving just doesn’t feel that good.
Is that the Tusk of Ganesh in your pocket...
The story, while basically paper thin provides an excellent chance to discover more about the two characters which will mean more to fans of the series rather than newcomers.
Throughout the game, Nadine, your partner who stays with you for the majority will constantly chat with Chloe and provide ongoing commentary and insight into both the story and their own backstories. This dialogue is written and done well, especially so in the cut-scenes (rendered in engine) and never becomes annoying or too much. Although I occasionally found myself tripping over or bumping into Nadine while traversing the world - especially whilst climbing, I never found her presence to be annoying, she even occasionally helps out in battle, mostly during hand to hand combat.
Things don’t always go quite as well as they do for Nathan Drake which provides a nice change of pace and with the banter between Chloe and Nadine almost as good as that of Nathan and Sully, I never found myself missing those two which I was quite surprised to realise once the credits rolled.
The Lost Legacy is a fun, quieter Uncharted adventure for the most-part, but one that sticks to its laurels while providing enough quality entertainment to leave you wanting more. The characters and writing are at the top of the game and the presentation is often jaw-dropping. If you know what to expect going in with this one, you won't find many surprises but will at least come out of it entertained. The established Uncharted 4 multiplayer returns for those seeking more of that classic, unmistakable Uncharted gameplay.
+ Fun, tight gameplay
+ Quality writing and voice acting
+ Great set-pieces
+ Incredible presentation
- Light story arc
- Introduces little new
- That feeling of deja vu
Naughty Dog at the top of their game. The quality of the environments and the passion that has gone into them is astonishing. Quality writing and characters shine through with top-notch voice acting.
Although it introduces little new, the core gameplay is polished and more importantly fun with plenty of freedom in combat.
A shorter campaign but at a budget price. The standard Uncharted 4 multiplayer is included.
out of 10
(not an average)
Uncharted: The Lost Legacy takes the fun, tight gameplay of Uncharted 4 and provides an opportunity to take a somewhat slower look at two incredibly well written characters on a fun romp through a beautifully presented version of India. While it introduces little new, it provides most of what you expect from an Uncharted game and everything great about the previous entries into a cohesive package that strips away the filler, providing a condensed but stunning and worthwhile journey.