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Uncharted: What Does it Mean to the PS3?

A lot, actually.  If you asked me which exclusive PlayStation 3 title is the most important, I would tell you it is Uncharted, by an astronomical unit.  Uncharted: Drake's Fortune dropped onto the PS3 as Sony's answer to Gears of War.  Where Naughty Dog arguably wasn't able to match the standard set in Gears' gunplay, they succeeded in developing an amazing action-adventure universe.  Naughty Dog was able to capture those classic adventure genre set pieces, create compelling characters and then weave them into a story with amazing cinematic presentation.

As Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception's release date approaches, the hype has been steadily growing.  It's sort of weird, but as more information about Uncharted 3 comes out, the less I want to hear about it.  I already know Uncharted 3 is going to be amazing and because it is such a story driven game, I am really only interested in the press regarding its multiplayer components.  I have spent a good amount of time with Uncharted 3's multiplayer in the open beta and at PAX Prime. It is solid.  I really like the addition of the buddy system and the sprint button.  The thing I love most about Uncharted's multiplayer is that it practically plays the same as the single player campaign.  The gunplay and platforming mechanics translate perfectly into co-operative and competitive online play. 

Through its great writing and gameplay, Uncharted has certainly become the flagship IP for the PlayStation brand.  The Uncharted name alone carries enough clout that Sony decided to bring a new chapter of the franchise to the PlayStation Vita, the company's newest portable platform.  It has not been announced if the PlayStation Vita's release has been delayed in Europe and North America so that Uncharted: Golden Abyss will be ready as a launch title, but it is not a big stretch.  Sony seems serious about the PlayStation Vita and an Uncharted game at launch would make a 'day one' purchase hard to resist for a lot of gamers, including myself. 

To further reinforce my point, IGN.com featured Uncharted: Drake's Fortune and Uncharted 2: Among Thieves in the top 15 of their Top 25 PS3 Games feature.  Uncharted 2 was ranked #1 on that list.  Its importance to the PS3 is unquestionable.  Uncharted is the jewel in the crown of the PS3 exclusives.  Games like Infamous, Resistance and other key PlayStation exclusives are important as well, but none of them can match the experience that Uncharted has provided.  The critical acclaim and popularity of the series is only matched by the biggest AAA franchises.

Even Hollywood has come knocking and talks are in progress to come up with a suitable screenplay.  While the success of Uncharted has been great for Sony and gamers, I wonder if it will get to be too much.  Initial reports of the screenplay had the Drake family as a band of eccentric thieves with Mark Wahlberg provisionally cast as Drake.  Nerds raged and the original screenwriter has been sacked, but it got me thinking.  I started wondering if Naughty Dog should wrap up the story in the third chapter, Drake's Deception.  We all appreciate games that are put together as well as the Uncharted series, but there is such a thing as too much of a good thing.  The last thing I want is my amazing memories of this series tarnished by lackluster sequels that drive it into the ground.  Personally, I'd like to see Nathan set off into a glorious sunset with Elena and know that the story is finished when I complete Drake's Deception.  Golden Abyss on the Vita could be a prequel and flesh out Nathan Drake's origin story prior to the start of the PS3 trilogy.  Am I crazy?  Is there such a thing as too much Uncharted?  Let me know what you think in the comments.


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