The Uncharted franchise has been a PlayStation darling ever since it came out on the PlayStation 3. The series wrapped up Nathan Drake’s story in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and spun off a new adventure with some supporting casts on Uncharted: Lost Legacy on the PlayStation 4. Both titles get a new lease of life with a PlayStation 5 remaster called Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection just in time for the showing of the Uncharted film.
It’s a no-brainer that this remaster’s release was timed to coincide with the film. In fact, in some locations, tickets to the film are part of the promotion. But what exactly does this remaster have to offer and will it make you watch the film? These are what I’ll try to answer here.
My first Uncharted
Unlike many who played the two games part of this remastered collection, this is my first encounter with the franchise. It’s a shame, but I was dealing with life during the entire PlayStation 3 generation. Can’t really blame me. I digress.
Given that, you can imagine how blown my mind was after going through Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection. It’s the definitive action-movie-that-you-can-play experience, reaffirming my love for the action genre. Naughty Dog did away with staple game elements like skill trees and levelling up in favor of a balls-to-the-walls action adventure, beautiful set pieces, great dialogue, and characters you’ll grow attached with.
I watched a few recaps of the first three Uncharted games to get myself acquainted. And while it wasn’t enough to fill me in entirely on the franchise’s lore, it played its role in making me somewhat familiar with the game.
A quick overview
I’ll keep this whole thing relatively spoiler-free to preserve the experience for those like me who haven’t played the game before. But what exactly is going in these two games?
Uncharted: A Thief’s End is the fourth installment of the franchise and neatly wraps up the story of main character Nathan Drake. In this game, he has left his treasure hunting days behind and is living a relatively normal life with his wife Elena Fisher.
However, a certain figure from his past re-enters his life and forces his hand. He joins this person in the hunt for Pirate Henry Avery’s lost treasure. What follows is a dose of high-octane action featuring wall climbing, gun fights, and more.
Meanwhile, Uncharted: Lost Legacy focuses on supporting characters from the previous games. You play as Chloe Frazer – treasure hunter and former flame of one Nathan Drake. Here, she’s accompanied by one of A Thief’s End’s antagonists, Nadine Ross.
It’s an unlikely pairing and one that was tense at the start but finds its footing as you go around rainforests in India in search of the Tusk of Ganesh. It plays similarly to A Thief’s End but with new weapons such as a silenced pistol. There’s also a new mechanic that lets you go back into stealth mode if you hide long and well enough after an encounter with the bad guys.
So, what’s new?
Like many PS4 games remastered for the PS5, Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection adds familiar upgrades we’ve seen implemented in the past year. These are faster (practically non-existent load times), graphical improvements, 3D audio implementation, and taking advantage of the Dual Sense controller.
In terms of graphical improvements, there are three modes you can play in. These are Fidelity, Performance, and Performance+. These breakdown as follows:
- Fidelity – Plays at native 4K with a 30fps frame rate
- Performance – Prioritizes a 60fps frame rate
- Performance+ – Pushes frame rate to 120fps but at only a 1080p resolution
Personally, the TV I use doesn’t support 120fps so I primarily played in Performance mode. Initially, I tried Fidelity mode which is what I thought would be best given my experience with Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. But the Uncharted games are more action-focused, players will benefit from a smoother frame rate.
Fidelity mode certainly gives you that blockbuster motion picture feel especially during cinematics. However, the shift from cinematics to gameplay appears more pronounced which can be a little bit jarring. Additionally, the gameplay action doesn’t feel as dynamic in this mode.
Performance mode, meanwhile, has a more seamless cinematic to gameplay transition. In fact, during the first few hours of the game, I caught myself standing around thinking I was still in a cinematic. The picture looks smoother without losing much in terms of the movie-like experience.The frame rate was consistent throughout with zero lag or jaggedness.
If your TV supports it, it might be worth your while to shift over to Performance+ mode. The high frame rate will certainly aid in the inevitable gun combat sequences.
3D Audio and Dual Sense
The 3D audio and Dual Sense additions were really pronounced during parts of the game when it was raining. At the time, I was playing at night with the windows closed. I really thought it was raining outside, but it really was just in game. And I wasn’t even playing with headphones on!
While raining, you can feel the Dual Sense control rumble a little bit as if it was being hit with raindrops. The controls also affect the trigger buttons where there’s a heavier, more pronounced feeling when you’re pressing R2 to fire guns. There are plenty of more subtle but definitely noticeable implementations that add to the overall experience.
The Dual Sense improvements are also felt during the driving sections of the game. Not only do you feel the terrain as you move around. The trigger buttons also react to whatever surface you’re trying to traverse giving more resistance where appropriate.
Is it worth the upgrade or new purchase?
I’ll speak first from my experience. As someone who played the games for the first time on a PS5, it was definitely one hell of a gaming experience. If these are titles you skipped from the previous generation or you just jumped into gaming consoles on the PS5, this is certainly worth every penny.
Playing the included games alone is already a treat. But the PS5 improvements elevates everything by engaging more of your senses as you play.
Local pricing isn’t available yet but it’s already listed for pre-order in the US. It’ll set you back US$ 49.99. The upgrades are a little trickier.
Here’s the detailed information from the PlayStation blog.
- Players who purchased Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, or Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End & Uncharted: The Lost Legacy Digital Bundle have the option to pay 10/€10 to upgrade to Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Digital Version. The upgrade will be available starting at launch on January 28, 2022.
- Owners of PS4 disc copies must insert them into the PS5 every time they want to download or play the PS5 digital versions. PS4 game disc owners who buy the PS5 Digital Edition disc-free console will not be able to get the PS5 version for the discounted price.
- PlayStation Plus members who claimed Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End via their PlayStation Plus subscription are not eligible for the $10/€10 digital PS5 upgrade.
In certain territories, purchasing or upgrading gives you a free ticket to watch the Uncharted film starring Tom Holland (Nathan Drake) and Mark Wahlberg (Sullivan). That’s certainly a nice incentive. Asked if the promo will be implemented in Southeast Asia, PlayStation said they are still ironing out details with Sony Films as of the time this was published.
It’s hard for me to make any definitive recommendation on this situation. The US$ 10 may be better spent as an addition to purchase any new games you may be eyeing. But if you have that extra mount, the upgrade doesn’t hurt at all.
One thing is true, whether you’re jumping in fresh or are looking dive in for another playthrough the games in Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection are certainly worth the time and experience.
It’s easier to get a PlayStation 5 now, Sony says
More supplies worldwide
Still struggling to get a new PlayStation 5? If dwindling console stocks are keeping you down, Sony has announced a reprieve for queue waiters. The company promised that supply for the console will greatly increase ahead of the PlayStation VR2’s launch in February.
Since the console’s launch back in 2020, scalpers and bots have persistently plagued the industry, taking supplies away from most gamers. Over the years, the impact of supply problems gradually dissipated. Today, it’s easier to buy a PlayStation 5, but supply can still be an issue in some parts of the world.
During CES 2023, Sony initially hinted that PlayStation 5 stocks should increase even more this year. Now, Sony is making it even more official. Today, the company officially posted that it’s easier to find one in retailers globally.
For users hunting for the console in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Europe, Sony recommends going to the official PlayStation store to buy one.
To promote the increased supply, Sony has also released a new promotional video for the PlayStation 5’s exclusives set to imitate a news show.
Only a month into the year, 2023 is already looking to be a great year for the platform. Later in February, Sony is set to launch the new PlayStation VR2. The console will also host a flurry of notable exclusives including Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, Assassin’s Creed Mirage, and Street Fighter 6.
Concept Nyx: Dell working on intelligent game controller
The future of gaming
Dell Technologies is working on an all-in-one intelligent game controller that shall interconnect devices and screens while providing a whole different level of gaming experience.
Called the Concept Nyx game controller, Dell’s project aims to provide easy access to gaming libraries across multiple devices and screens for effortless sessions at home.
Here’s what we know so far about Concept Nyx:
To kick things off, the design-making process took lots of turns. Developers explored adding tons of buttons, attachments, sensors, and more.
This has led to the potential final design that gives users personalized settings at their fingertips. It’s composed of the following parts:
- Dual thumb control wheels
- Light ring
- Adaptive thumbstick
- Left and right scroll bumpers
- Fingerprint sensor in the middle
- Left and right adaptive triggers (underneath)
- Shift buttons (underneath)
The fingerprint reader detects who is using the controller specifically, to be able to load their games right where they left off instantly.
Dell also prioritized the device’s haptics. They come with self-adjusting variable resistance thumbsticks that can be tailored to user preferences and specific game play.
PC gaming musts have also been included in the concept. Shift buttons underneath the controller allow for more front button options, mimicking the shift combos from PC keyboards.
The innovative scroll wheels give users an easier time to navigate and select weapons, while the intelligent touchpad allows for instant access to customizable controls in-game, without having to toggle a menu screen which disrupts your real-time gaming view.
Concept Nyx dashboard
The era of tug-of-wars at home may soon be over as well. The Concept Nyx controller is being designed to accommodate simultaneous gaming.
For instance, while connected on two different headsets, two separate Concept Nyx controllers may be used to play two different games on a split screen.
Streaming to other devices and screens and wi-fi connectivity are also some of the capabilities of the controller by simply pulling the thumbstick.
All these factors have been the foundation for the development of the Concept Nyx’s intelligent edge ecosystem beyond gaming.
Buy AMD’s Ryzen 7000 series-Star Wars Jedi: Survivor bundle
Cal Kestis’ adventure continues
AMD has an early offer for those anticipating the release of Star Wars Jedi: Survivor.
Until April 1, 2023, customers may avail of the AMD Ryzen Game Bundle which includes select 7000 series processors and access to Star Wars Jedi: Survivor.
Powered by the new Zen 4 architecture, Ryzen 7000 series desktop processors offer incredible performance for gamers — up to 15% faster than the Zen 3 generation.
When purchased, gamers will receive a redemption code and will have until May 6, 2023 to redeem their copy of Star Wars Jedi: Survivor.
The action adventure game is set to release on March 17 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and Windows.
The sequel to Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order stars now Jedi Knight Cal Kestis, whose story continues with adventures that will push him further than ever as he fights to protect the galaxy from descending into darkness.
Players will discover new planets and visit familiar frontiers in the Star Wars galaxy in the game, each with unique biomes, challenges, and enemies.
Watch the Star Wars Jedi: Survivor trailer.
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