You wake up with an immediate sense of danger, and an atrocious pain penetrating your side. Nothing is right side up; your hand is filled with blood. Something has clearly gone wrong. You are inside a train that's precariously dangling from a mountain... with a bullet hole in your side. This is the opening scene of Uncharted 2 Among Thieves. Nathan Drake has to scramble up this train, and players are immersed from the very start. This is only the first chapter, but it represents Uncharted 2's ability to put players in the middle of a blockbuster movie. A blockbuster movie that does everything right from plot to characters to dialogue. Uncharted 2 is clearly something special and it's one of the best experiences that gaming has to offer.
The plot is inspired by Marco Polo as Nathan Drake, Victor Sullivan, Elena Fischer, and Chloe Fraser are in a global conflict against a warlord ,Zoran Lazarevic, to reach the cintamani stone. This journey will take you from Borneo to Nepal to the Himalayans letting Uncharted 2 delve into a diverse set of environments. There is never anything that seems repetitive and the fun will last until the credits. You will be engulfed by both story and gameplay.
The biggest improvement is on the gameplay side of things. Puzzles, climbing, and gun play are spread out evenly to create a well paced experience. On the puzzle side of things you will never fill overwhelmed or lost. They are all pretty easy, but what makes them so great is their creativity in terms of atmosphere. My favorite being the classic bounce the light around the room puzzle. There is something spectacular about climbing a huge dagger as that outstanding music starts to kick in. I get goosebumps every time I play that section, and I've played it a lot of times! Uncharted 2 experimented with the idea of slowing down the pace for a section where you walk around a small town in the Himalayan mountains. This consists of Drake awkwardly saying high to people, harassing kids, and smelling Yaks. The change of pace is actually very welcome, for if gives players a time to breathe after climbing up that train, and before running away from a tank(yep, that's the life of Nathan Drake). Naughty Dog even includes this type of thing in their future games like Uncharted 3 and The Last of Us. Soon after this mission, Nathan Drake and Tenzin (Tibetan speaking awesome guy) go parading in an ice gave. This is one of my favorite missions, because you watch these two characters bond and they can't even properly communicate. This is an example of how video games can stand up to films and TV. Naughty Dog has crafted such a great relationship between these characters(not just Tenzin and Drake, but the whole cast) proving that they are masters when it comes to storytelling.
Uncharted 2 Among Thieves does everything right, and is one of the best experiences on Playstation, so it deserves our top score of 9.9!