previews\ Sep 16, 2007 at 8:00 pm

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune - PS3 - Preview 2

Naughty Dog has been an asset to Sony’s first-party gaming division since the original PlayStation days. The company created the highly-successful Crash Bandicoot franchise on the PS One and then moved on to create the Jak & Daxter franchise on the PS2. Now the developer is keeping with the trend and developing a brand new franchise for the PS3. Heavily inspired by penny dreadfuls and adventure stories from Indiana Jones to National Treasure, Naughty Dog’s first new franchise since Jak & Daxter on the PS2 will give gamers some great action sequences and accessible controls as the developer has been known for over the years, but with some next-gen perks that you can only find on the PS3. Uncharted will weave a fascinating yarn that will draw adventure fans in, and keep them playing with intense combat.

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune PlayStation 3 screenshots

Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune puts you in control of treasure hunter Nathan Drake, descendant of explorer Sir Francis Drake, as he embarks on a quest first began by his distant relative to find the lost city of El Dorado. Along the way, he crosses paths with an enterprising journalist, fights modern day pirates, and even takes on mercenaries as his journey takes him throughout exotic locations in South America.

At a recent press event held by Sony, the developers had a build of the game on display that showed three new sections, giving a look at the game’s action elements as well as the puzzles. The three sections included “Fortified”, a watery stage set in some ancient ruins, “Sanctuary?”, a section where the main character had to take on mercenaries and snipers in an outdoor environment, and “Going Underground”, a section in a library where you had to shoot it out with a few more mercs and then solve a puzzle that involved lining up statues to match a diagram. The puzzles weren’t anything too taxing, and mostly involved platforming and jumping.

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune PlayStation 3 screenshots

The game’s combat was fast and furious, yet pretty easy to grasp. There’s a cover system (which is essential to use, or else you die) that lets you hide behind most objects in the environment and either shoot blindly or compromise some cover and aim. The enemy AI will also react realistically and employ cover as well.

As far as weaponry goes, Drake is never low on ammo. You’ll have access to a variety of handguns, rifles and grenade launchers, as well as hand grenades. The hand grenades use the SIXAXIS for aiming, allowing you to move the reticule by tilting the controller up, down, left and right.

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune PlayStation 3 screenshots

Graphically, the game has been cleaned up quite a bit since last May. Characters use a special proprietary layering technique for some great looking facial mapping. This lets them show off some expressions more than just the typical stoic action hero look. Drake will grimace as he fires weapons, show emotions based on the conversation he’s having, and basically change his look depending on what is happening in a game.

Get ready to put your exploring boots on, Uncharted ships on November 20th.

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