Postcards from the Uncharted 2 beta

3 Oct

I’ve been playing the public beta – which these days is just another way of saying “demo” – of Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, sequel to what I thought was a stellar action/adventurer on the PS3, and a game that’s been receiving preposterously good reviews across the board. It comes out later this month and I can’t wait, and thus didn’t.

I’ve only played deathmatch and Co-op so far, but my favourite mode is the movie maker system. Games are automatically recorded (without a drop in framerate quality, unlike the PC’s FRAPS program which turns games in Powerpoints) and can be played back, from any angle, at multiple speeds, and paused so you can take screenshots. This is exactly what I did.

I started out on the ‘Heroes’ team as a heroic, uh, old man. It did not go well.

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For instance, this dick who found a riot shield in the Nepalese mountains charged through my hail of wildly innacurate automatic fire and slotted me with a pistol.

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Here, we both tried meleeing each other. I missed completely.

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He knocked me off a cliff.

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More or less because we had me on our team, we lost. And if that isn’t enough personal pronouns for you, I. Though when the next match began I was playing as the genero-tastic Villains. I chose the character with the gasmask, because I once saw a TV show which said the SAS wear gasmasks to look intimidating as well as prevent them from dying, and went gunning for the good guys.

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Here I am murdering the game’s main character. There were about four Nathan Drakes running around, though I still managed to harass this particular Drake.

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I informally teamed up with that guy on the right to lay down a double-Kalashikov smackdown on the square-jawed yet extremely likable chump. My buddy was actually shot mere microseconds after this was taken, but I have no sympathy- note his inferior cover technique.

Drake Clone eventually caught up with me, following me into the map’s underbelly and clouting me. I deserved it a bit.

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Of course, my real enemy in that game was the nefarious Grenade.

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After my arse was on the wrong end of two seperate kickings, I switched maps to a gorgeously detailed village. My luck started to change, even if the Drake:Non-Drake ratio did not.

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When you kill someone, you can hear their voice chat for a short time afterwards. I knew this guy was chasing me so I high-tailed it into the first floor of a shack, then spun and pointed my shotgun at the top of the ladder I just climbed. Sure enough he followed suit and was met with a chest full of buckshot. The guy controlling him was audiably displeased.

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It was actually an act of revenge for this close-range drubbing I recieved from one of the Drakes, who all seem to have a problem with being in focus. It wasn’t actually the same dude, but being killed with the puny AK47 when you have the mighty M4 carbine doesn’t so much sting the pride as it does create fiery hatred.

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I doused it, in a sense.

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I don’t know who this is but his rocket looks cool.

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The seething irritation of a man being shot. Even in multiplayer, the animations and facial expressions are top-notch, with the exception of death – characters clutch at their wounds and flail like the hilarious ragdolls they are, but their faces become eerily blank. It’s unsettling to behold, but you’re doing something wrong if you’re staring at dead faces when there’s a crazy-fun deathmatch to be had.

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