A Frank Discussion About Uncharted 4
— Peter Smith (@pasmith) May 12, 2016
It probably would have been really easy for the developers and designers to create a nice, Martha Stewart-esque approach to the Drake household and saved themselves a whole lot of design-time, but they made a conscious effort to make this house looked lived in. Not just lived in, but relatable. The place is generally a mess, with towels and clothes on the floor, bathrooms with grooming and cosmetic supplies on the counters, papers and books everywhere (and not in the “see how academic they are!” kind of ways). There was very little difference between the Drake’s house and my own house, and it helped to sell the “realism” of the situation.
I also got a massive kick out of Nathan and Elena’s “dinner” on the couch as seen in the video above. Nolan North’s and Emily Rose’s execution of their lines just sound like married people talking about their respective daily experiences. The best part was when they argue over who will do the dishes, and settle it by playing Crash Bandicoot (“Your…TV game thing”, Nate calls it). Of course, you get to play Crash on an aged PS2 while Nate and Elena provide a comically self-aware commentary on the loading speed of the ancient system (exactly how kids today would react to playing on the PS2), learning how to play games (exactly how your mom would react to playing for the first time), and most importantly, how Crash’s running and jumping is something Nate could school him on.
I think the game does a pretty good job of balancing the cut-scenes with the action, but the Uncharted series has always been one where I’ve never minded having to sit through the narrative, because the execution has always been stellar. In fact, if you need to catch up, or haven’t ever played an Uncharted game, you can catch a super-cut of all of the narrative scenes (with relevant action sequences added when necessary for cohesion) from each game on YouTube. I was going to link them, but found that there are several iterations from several sources, and without having reviewed them, I can’t say which one is best, so I’ll just urge you to search them out when you’ve got some free time if you’re interested.
As a footnote, I would have had more screens if A) I’d remembered to take them while playing, and B) I’d remembered how to take screenshots and share them on the PS4.