An Uncharted game is helmed for the first time by female leads.
Let’s get this out of the way – this is the first Uncharted game not to feature the titular Nathan Drake, but you are really not going to miss him or his buddy Victor Sullivan.
While both are no doubt synonymous with the Uncharted titles, the new protagonist Chloe Frazer and her partner Nadine Ross are equally interesting.
And they are faces fans are already familiar with as they have appeared in past Uncharted titles. Chloe, the likeable roguish treasure hunter, first appeared in Uncharted 2 while Nadine showed up in Uncharted 4 as the rather unlikable Shoreline mercenary.
But as you play the game you might even learn to like her just because of the camaraderie between the two.
And let’s face it – when developer Naughty Dog said Uncharted 4 was Nathan’s last adventure, we all felt a pang of loss because we wouldn’t be able to play another Uncharted title.
But luckily that only meant Nathan is done but we get to go on one more adventure in the Uncharted world, even though it is likely to be the last.
Tusk at hand
Chloe is on the hunt for the legendary broken tusk of Lord Ganesha – a life-long quest and obsession of her father’s.
You may be familiar with how the elephant god lost his tusk but as with many mythologies there is more than one explanation – the one Naughty Dog picked is slightly less known, at least among my friends.
The quest takes her and Nadine deep into the Western Ghats. I can’t say this enough – The Lost Legacy is a beautiful game made even more beautiful because it takes place in India, an enchanting land entrenched in culture and mystery.
From crowded marketplaces and dilapidated slums to lush forests and ancient ruins, everything is rendered with painstaking detail.
It’s almost hard to imagine that the studio was able to squeeze so much out of the PlayStation 4. It’s too bad we didn’t have a PS4 Pro but we can only imagine the game would look even more spectacular in 4K and with HDR (high dynamic range).
The game starts in a crowded marketplace and it is thrilling to hear the people speak in Tamil – that totally sucked me into the world instantly. The studio didn’t get the accent right all the time but for the most part it was pretty decent.
About the only thing that spoiled the magic was that sometimes the dialogue between Chloe and Nadine repeated but the banter was always entertaining so it never became annoying.
The Lost Legacy’s gameplay is centred on platforming, puzzle-solving and excellent combat.
The platforming is fun – things break off and blow up as you are jumping – but it’s never challenging as you are rarely required to time your jumps properly like in the old Prince Of Persia titles.
The puzzles, on the other hand, range from simple to smart but never mind- bending. I am just thankful that they don’t border on bothersome, as there are no puzzles just for the sake of puzzles like in some games.
The combat, as with other Uncharted titles, is just excellent. Your quest for the tusk requires you to “borrow” a medallion from Asav, a ruthless warlord. As you would expect, he never forgives you for it and his rebel army is constantly on your tail.
This makes for some amazing set-pieces and it’s entirely up to you on how you approach a battle.
It is extremely satisfying to flank the goons and take them out silently because the stealth mechanics are highly polished.
And while it’s not compulsory to take out enemies quietly, it helps thin the numbers greatly. You’ll want to take out some enemies this way as those that wield sniper rifles and RPGs only take a shot or two to kill you.
Freedom to fight
Just within an hour or two into the game, you’ll be given a large open area filled with waterfalls, rivers, ruins and valleys to explore with your Jeep.
What’s amazing is that you can tackle the challenges in almost any order, giving you the freedom to zip around any way you like and I found myself stopping every so often to enjoy the visual spectacle.
There is also an optional quest you can undertake that will require you to collect tokens.
The multiplayer component has been transplanted from Uncharted 4 with an additional component – Survival Arena – which is a co-op mode you can play with up to three players and take on waves and waves of enemies.
What’s cool about the multiplayer is that it’s a unified system so both Uncharted 4 and Lost Legacy owners can play together without having to own both titles.
If you have played the other Uncharted titles then I only need to tell you that The Lost Legacy is as good as the other games, the difference being the main character and her chum.
Nothing has been lost in making them the heroines – rather the only big complaint is that the title has nothing new to offer.
Not surprising really, as it’s meant to be a standalone expansion, not a full-blown new title. So there really isn’t any good reason why you shouldn’t have bought the game already.
If you are new to the series, this may not be the best point to start, as some things – dialogues and references to past characters and events – will be lost on you.
But you are still in for a rollicking good adventure, and if anything it’ll convince you to play the other titles, all of which are available on PS4 now.
Pros: Gorgeous graphics; stunning set pieces; smarter puzzles; taking out guards stealthily is fun; amazing set pieces.
Cons: Repeated dialogue; offers no new major features.
Uncharted: The Lost Legacy
Action adventure game for PS4