‘Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves Collection’ Review: A Dazzling New-Gen Remaster
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Featured Image Credit: Sony
Naughty Dog’s 2016 PlayStation 4 epic was - and still is - a stunning-looking game. It’s really, properly gorgeous. The Henry Cavill of video games, if you will. Nathan Drake’s final adventure pushed the PS4 to its limits, its remarkable vistas and beautifully rendered characters sending our poor consoles into fits of thunderous whirrs.
Uncharted 4 absolutely holds up to this day, and looks better than the vast majority of more recent releases in the process. In short, it’s never needed any improvements. But that hasn’t stopped Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves Collection from trying anyway.
Legacy Of Thieves Collection bundles Uncharted 4 and its excellent standalone spinoff adventure Lost Legacy into one handsome package, throwing in a bevy of delightful graphical upgrades and enhancements to boot. The resulting product is a thrilling return to two essential PlayStation exclusives that have never looked or played better.
It’s worth noting that Legacy Of Thieves Collection hits PC at the same time as PS5, and that’s the real headline here. For the first time ever, PC gamers will get the chance to experience Uncharted on their preferred platform. While it’s a bit weird that Sony has opted to kick this off by giving PC gamers the final chapter in Nathan’s adventures instead of The Nathan Drake Collection, you don’t really need to have played the first three games to get anything from Uncharted 4. In fact, given the whole brother retcon that comes out of nowhere in the first ten seconds of the game, it might actually benefit you in the long run.
Nathan Drake’s swansong is as affecting now as ever, an unforgettable cast of beloved characters old and new coming together in a no-holds-barred adventure that spans the globe. There’s a lightness of touch to the Uncharted games that’s universes away from Naughty Dog’s other major franchise, The Last Of Us. It’s a welcome change of pace to return to a less intense world after the dour The Last Of Us Part II, even if watching Drake quip as he shoots his way through hundreds of presumably innocent henchmen can be occasionally jarring. Nathan Drake has just as much blood on his hands as Joel. Perhaps his golf club execution is being saved for Uncharted 5.
Uncharted 4’s commitment to larger, more open levels and a more sandbox-style approach to stealth and combat serves it well, and helps to keep the gameplay from falling into an endless loop of climbing and cover-based shooting. Drake’s finale is still far too long and could stand to be at least a few hours shorter than it actually is, however.
The Lost Legacy, meanwhile, is a perfectly bite-sized adventure that utilises everything that makes Uncharted 4 great with none of the bloat. Its inclusion in this package is what elevates it to an essential upgrade, in all honestly - especially because Uncharted 4’s excellent and underrated multiplayer has been removed for the remaster. I get why, but it’s still a painful omission.
While PlayStation fans will obviously have seen it all before, Legacy Of Thieves Collection is still a worthy upgrade for any PS5 owners looking to revisit Nathan and the gang. Unlike the Death Standing and Ghost Of Tsushima Director’s Cuts, there’s no new content to speak of, but a number of visual enhancements and PS5-specific features add new depth.
Both Uncharted 4 and Lost Legacy look better than ever before, which is especially remarkable given that they were never exactly ugly games to begin with. Most of the improvements are subtle, all combining to provide a much smoother and more rewarding experience overall. Non-existent loading times are always the big one for me, but the improved 4K resolutions aren’t to be sniffed at either. The wide-open plains of Madagascar pop with vibrant colour like never before, while the war-torn streets and untamed jungles of India sing on the new hardware.
Everything chugs along at a silky 60fps too, though you do have the option to run the game at 120fps at the expense of resolution, if you so choose. Either way, Uncharted has never looked better - and that’s quite the feat in itself.
If you’ve never played an Uncharted game before and want to see what all the fuss is about, Legacy Of Thieves Collection is a must-play. Whether you’re coming to it on PC or PS5, both games serve as a reminder that nobody does gripping, story-driven action-adventure quite like Naughty Dog. If you are a veteran of the series, these welcome upgrades add an extra shine to an already gleaming treasure.
Pros: More gorgeous than ever before, two excellent stories, gripping action set pieces and explosive action throughout
Cons: Uncharted 4 is too long, no multiplayer
For fans of: The Last Of Us, Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy, Tomb Raider
Uncharted: Legacy Of Thieves Collection is available January 28 for PlayStation 5 (version tested) and PC. Code for review was supplied by the publisher. Find a guide to GAMINGbible's review scores here.