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Uncharted 2's multiplayer was surprisingly strong for a first attempt – Naughty Dog provided players with a ton of modes, both competitive and cooperative, as well as a ton of avatar skins, both hero and villain. The developer even managed to squeeze in some platforming amidst all that gunplay.
Still, we believe that a series as special as Uncharted deserves multiplayer that is equally special. Rather than emulate the generic modes we expect in generic shooters – deathmatch, capture-the-flag, territories, etc – we'd love if the Naughty Dog team would invent totally unique modes that emphasize the less violent and more adventurous elements of the series.
Above: Not a bad template to follow
For competition, have players race through a temple, jumping, shimmying and swinging past traps (and each other) to reach an artifact first. For cooperative, take a cue from XBLA / PSN gem Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light by asking players to work together and combine their characters' unique skills (Nate's the most acrobatic, Elena can squeeze into tight spaces, Chloe does explosives, etc.) to solve puzzles and overcome obstacles.
Imagine yourself back on the train in Uncharted 2. You race across swaying, speeding rooftops as the scenery flashes from vivid jungle to black tunnel to snowy mountain. You dangle from the sides of carriages, leap between cars and dive through compartment windows. You struggle to maintain your balance and your aim, as enemies attack from every angle. Only the enemies aren't campaign AI… they're your PSN buddies.
Uncharted boasts some of the most beautiful environments in gaming, and the multiplayer wisely uses most of them as maps. But Uncharted is also famous for staging fantastically cinematic action sequences in these environments, and it's a shame that spectacle can't be carried over to the multiplayer maps as well. In addition to fighting through a moving train, we'd love to wage online war in the collapsing Nepalese hotel as one of the greatest helicopters in digital history rains fire down on all of the combatants.
We wouldn't dare imply that Uncharted's settings need improvement – they're the most exotic eye candy available in gaming today, and the team at Naughty Dog always surprises us with where they decide to go next. We will, however, offer a few humble suggestions in order to spark discussion…
For example, despite our mockery of mummies earlier in this article, we'll be crushed if Nathan Drake doesn't explore the ancient tombs of at least one Egyptian pyramid during his Middle Eastern adventure. And since no Uncharted game stays in the same place for long, we'd also love to see him in some decidedly non-desert settings. Maybe even some non-exotic settings, like a European castle or American metropolis.
Too crazy? Tell us where you want to see Drake visit in the comments below.
Because otherwise, the Mark Wahlbergs win.
Feb 16, 2011
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