The Uncharted Collection is Not Worth Your Money
Sony has accidentally revealed that their latest remaster package coming to the PlayStation 4 is none other than... the Uncharted Collection. Since Uncharted 4: A Thief's End has been delayed into next year, this seems like a smart move on Sony's part, yes? No, not so much.
Even going past my personal reservations I have with the series, the Uncharted Collection just is underwhelming at best. You get the three campaigns from the core PlayStation 3 entries, a photo mode (previously included in The Last of Us and inFamous: Second Son), and no multiplayer except for access to the Uncharted 4 multiplayer beta.
So, let me get this straight -- the excellent co-op mode from Uncharted 2 and Uncharted 3 is completely scrapped. All that dynamic teamwork and substance in gameplay is just gone, even though people still even play Uncharted 2's co-op to this day on PlayStation 3.
Uncharted 3's also fairly dense (if sometimes questionably balanced) competitive multiplayer is also 100% scrapped for this collection. At best, day-one buyers get access to a limited-time multiplayer beta that will be unplayable after the beta concludes. Instantly, the replay value and extent of content in the package has dropped and we're just getting started.
Uncharted campaigns, love them or hate them, are not highly replayable experiences.
You play through once, you see everything. There are no new or alternate encounters to find. At best, a few sections in the third game allow you to try to be stealthy for brief intro and outro sequences. It's The Order: 1886 all over again, just with substantially longer run time and none of the cool weaponry.
Remember, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune released back in 2007. It is nearly a decade old.
Regardless of your nostalgia for the series, there are only so many times you can replay a campaign so highly scripted and linear, with no real progression system either. The biggest thing the game offers is the ability to unlock guns at any point in the campaign, like a cheat mode, but in past entries, those have required you to beat the game on its hardest difficulty. There are licensed tie-in games with more to do other than go through the motions, over and over.
This looked way more impressive back in 2007...
This is also on top of the fact that Uncharted games are foremost praised and known for their visuals. The problem there being that only rose tinted glasses can hide the aging engine tech of these games. Remember, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune released back in 2007. It is nearly a decade old.
What was once revolutionary technology is now less powerful than the latest version of the Unity engine. There are games on tablets and Android consoles with more detail than Drake's Fortune, so the whole "eye candy" angle is pointless now.
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception is the only title that can arguably be held up to a similar layer of detail as The Last of Us, but even then, has far more cramped environments as a result. The games will all be at 1080p resolution and run at 60 frames per second, but that only gets you so far.
So, the visuals aren't going to hold up great because they're built around looking realistic instead of looking stylized. The multiplayer, which for some of us was the only redeeming factor, is completely scrapped save for a limited time beta. Golden Abyss, the PS Vita entry that tried to increase single-player replayability, is absent. There is no graphical overhaul, just standard 1080p resolution and 60 frames per second. The campaigns have little-to-no replay value and are almost as linear and scripted as The Order: 1886.
Boy, I can't see any reason not to buy this collection. Especially when you could just, say, buy a PlayStation 3 for about $150, and get all three games for about $30 (and that's if you buy the Game of the Year editions). Along with access to tons of other, better exclusives for the PlayStation 3.
Because, you see, it actually has games released that are worth playing. From the creative oddballs like Fat Princess and Puppeteer, to the hardcore titles like Killzone 3 and Demon's Souls, you get a much better value for your dollar. They might not be at 60 frames per second, but if that's all that matters to you, then I don't think there's anything I can say to convince you otherwise.
[Image Credit: Uncharted Wiki, Softpedia, YouTube, Game Informer, Significant Bits]
Daniel R. MillerJune 5, 2015, 1:16 pmFeatured ContributorTo me, a big part of the Remaster debate stems from how long it's been since the original game came out. Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD is fine since it's been almost 1.5-2 entire console lifespans since those games first hit store shelves. I was also ok with The Last of Us, due to the fact that Gamestop ran a 50% off Trade-In deal, and the game was legitimately great anyway, so 25 bucks for an upgrade plus the DLC, Photo Mode, etc was worth it IMO.
Victor RenJune 5, 2015, 1:10 amColumnistIf they are leaving out all the multiplayer stuff then I hope they lower down the value to something that of $40-$45, but that probably won't happen. Sony is making this for those who never played the game, and will argue that it contain's about 30-40 hours of gameplay to sell the $60.
MarkL_TGGJune 4, 2015, 6:47 pmCorrespondent"There's only so many times you can replay a campaign so highly scripted and linear, with no real progression system either."
This is really an argument that can be made for any $60 single-player only release. I do believe remasters are more for the people that didn't get to play them on the PS3. For plenty, the PS4 is their first console.
Elijah BeahmJune 4, 2015, 8:22 pmFeatured ColumnistExcept the average $60 single-player only game does a hell of a lot more than Uncharted. Gears of War: Judgement had Declassified challenges. Spec Ops: The Line had multiple moral choices and a branching ending. Uncharted has absolutely none of that, and I think you're doing a disservice to other single-player games by daring to imply they are all the exact same amount of content and quality.
And regardless of if this is for people who did not play the past games, it is still a bad deal. It's like saying that we should release Tomb Raider on iOS just because someone might not have had an original PlayStation. It might be true, but it's not the original experience, and is questionable in being brought forward as a "new" product.
The Soapbox LordJune 4, 2015, 11:31 pmFeatured ContributorThese "remasters" are an easy, simple cash grab for huge publishers. They aren't for anyone except those who are willing to double dip usually. Most people with a PS4 had a PS3 or some other console. This isn't just to entice new people to hop on a franchise, it's to make easy money.
GabrielKrossJune 5, 2015, 12:03 amFeatured ColumnistI disagree, I like the FFX/X-2 remaster, I hated having to plug in my ps2 every time I got the itch to play them. Though I still have to do it for Xenosaga, which is frustrating. I also am one of those that liked the MCC from the start because I play halo mostly for the campaign. I used to spend entire weekends pushing through the campaign with buddies on Legendary back when I was in the military.
Elijah BeahmJune 5, 2015, 12:49 amFeatured ColumnistSee, for certain games, I don't like to play it on PlayStation 2, but others just feel best on there, so I've kept it hooked up. As for MCC... ehh, I like the campaigns most of all as well, especially the first two games, but what I've played thus far has felt a bit off center. TBH, you're better off downloading the free CMT mods for Halo: Custom Edition on PC.
GabrielKrossJune 5, 2015, 12:53 amFeatured Columnistthe only shooters I enjoy playing on PC are borderlands and Crysis. Crysis because the controller settings are bat crap crazy. Borderlands just feels right on PC even though I have it setup to run on controller.
Elijah BeahmJune 5, 2015, 5:06 pmFeatured Columnisthttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joBvfJJkELQ this may change that.
Michael SlevinJune 4, 2015, 6:37 pmColumnistMost of the time I think remasters are fine. They give people a chance to catch up and experience a game they missed. I do not, however, like when a remaster takes away parts of what made the original experience great. I think people will still want this since Uncharted is more of a single player series, but it is still disappointing to hear parts being taken away.
Elijah BeahmJune 4, 2015, 8:23 pmFeatured ColumnistThe sheer amount of people I've seen/heard/encountered playing the multiplayer speaks to the contrary. Uncharted 3's competitive multiplayer was popular enough that Sony made a F2P version of it on PlayStation 3.