As part of our general household streamlining last month, I traded in a bunch of old games for store credit* and brought home a couple of fresh titles.
Jenn and I have been playing the Uncharted series together, and the third one, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, is another highly entertaining installment in the series. This series follows Nathan Drake, a kind of modern day fusion of Indiana Jones and Jack Bauer, who roams the world tracking down archaeological treasures and solving historical mysteries. The earlier Uncharted titles boast some of the best story-telling in the business, and this one is no exception. The graphics, meanwhile, are absolutely gorgeous. (The cityscapes in Yemen are particularly impressive here.) The gameplay is fun, a combination of puzzle-solving, third-person shooter, and cinematic viewing experience; in fact, if there’s a flaw to the game, it’s that it tries to be all games to all people. For me, the shoot-outs and action sequences grow tedious after a while, interrupting the flow of narrative, and the body-counts get increasingly ridiculous. (Others will probably live for the fights.) Overall, though, this title is pretty great.
I also snapped up FIFA 2013. EA Sports does sports games right, and this soccer simulator is pretty spectacular. Like the NHL franchise, this one has modes where you can control the whole team, or just one player (“Be a Pro”). I’m finding the controls more complicated than hockey, but the graphics, commentary, replays, weather effects, and ball physics are all very well done, and in general I think it’s a better-looking game than the NHL series, and just as addictive.
* Footnote for the future: In 2013, there are still brick-and-mortar video game stores where you can go to buy games.