Some characters, like Master Chief or Marcus Fenix, are heroes: always capable, always resourceful, always confident, always in control of every situation. Nathan Drake, by contrast, is almost never in control of any situation. He’s always outgunned, outnumbered and outflanked, and continually finds himself in situations where he’s at an absurd disadvantage – hanging from a tall signpost in the middle of a plaza while surrounded by angry mercenaries, for example. Somehow, his quick thinking, plucky resilience and Rasputin-like endurance always pull him through unscathed, but watching him completely lose his shit in the meantime is always entertaining.
Nathan’s charm extends well beyond his uncanny knack for getting in over his head, though. A globe-trotting, treasure-hunting thief with an apparently inexhaustible travel budget, he begins each game with completely selfish motives, but by the end he’s always saving the world from international supercriminals who want to unleash some ancient evil on the world for profit. He also has the good fortune to be paired with (mostly) female partners who act as ideal foils for his cocky swagger and apparent inability to take anything completely seriously, and the screwball patter that erupts between them is part of why Nathan, and his adventures, possess a depth and humanity that most videogame characters can only dream of.