Uncharted: Drake's Fortune Aesthetics Preview - 14/11/2007

TGSN takes a look at the aesthetics of this epic adventure from Naughty Dog and exclusive to PlayStation 3.

Back in 2001, when the PS2 was finding its feet, Naughty Dog, the creators of the Crash series, unleashed Jak and Daxter. The game kicked off PS2's hugely successful life, and without the open ended nature of the world they created, we wouldn't have some of the platformers that we do now. They're hoping to repeat this success with their latest adventure, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune and they think they have created a spot on next-gen experience.

Uncharted's titular protagonist, Nathan Drake, believes that he is a distant descendant of the legendary Sir Francis Drake. This gives him an immediate infatuation with adventuring, and he sets out to discover his predecessor's treasure. He is joined by Elena Fisher, an independent woman who makes sure Drake sticks to the path. These two adventurers look great, and blend into the environment effortlessly. They seem like they are more real than the average videogame character, feeling similar to Alyx Vance from Half Life 2. Everything about them is polished, from their hairstyles to the tone of their voices. The clothes they wear are worn out and rough, adding to the realism the game entails.

But not all the elements of the game give a sense of realism. The developers have already hinted at some mysterious events that happen on the island, covering the real story in a cloud of thick fog. So far the plot is looking to be a great part of the game, and we can't wait to see what else happens to this dynamic duo.

The art direction in Drake's Fortune is simply stunning. Naughty Dog have used every ounce of power that the PS3 offers to create a world that is full of vitality. Rather than attempting to have a photo realistic jungle, which Crysis has proven it can deliver, the environment feels richer than it usually would be. The colour used gives it a stylised look, making the world eye-catching and vibrant. While the textures found are effervescent.

The graphics are amazing from a technical standpoint too, with Uncharted being the best looking game on any Sony platform to date. That may seem like an overstatement, but when you see this game running, it's chocolate dripping from your HDTV. This year, there has been no other game to make you feel envious of the main character, purely because they are in this vivacious world. If only you could venture into this environment, but alas, technology isn't quite that advanced yet.

We haven't even touched on the gameplay, but for information on that see our Demo Impressions article. But even so, the game's aesthetics seem so good that it's definitely one to watch. Keep on TGSN for the extensive review when it comes out on December 7th.

- Sam Atkins


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