I actually finished this game a while ago, but I haven’t figured out what to say about it. Still, I should probably give it a shot. Drake’s Deception is not my favorite of these games for several reasons.
**Some spoilers ahead**
Perhaps the biggest reason I didn’t like Drake’s Deception as much as I liked the first two was because of Nathan Drake himself. One of my favorite things about his character that I’ve talked about several times is that he’s always been a genuinely good guy who puts his friends’ lives above his own mission. In this, that isn’t so true.
There were a lot of instances where I thought Nathan was being kind of a jerk. I get that this particular mission was very personal to him, but it felt like he was being more reckless with not only his life, but that of his friends. Normally, I wouldn’t mind that kind of character. The problem was that it was against his established character.
I’m also getting a little tired of the will-they-won’t-they relationship between Nathan and Elena. I feel like they’ve been through so much together already that they should either stay together or break up and go adventuring with someone else. I mean, they apparently married between games 2 and 3, but they were separated by 3. If they’re broken up again by game 4, I’m going to be very annoyed. Seriously Naughty Dog, there are other ways of manufacturing tension for a game.
Actually, the consistency of the way Naughty Dog makes the tension and conflict of the games is part of the reason I didn’t like this one as much. It’s just starting to feel like a rehash of the plot from the other games. They all go like this:
- Nathan and Sully get into some trouble
- Bad guy is revealed
- Nathan and Elena meet up again
- They all go to some exotic locations
- Bad guy captures/almost captures them, but they get away
- They find some ancient civilization with a dark secret
- They decide against stealing the secret thing
- The bad guy tries to kill Nathan, fails, and dies
- They destroy the ancient civilization
- Nathan and Elena lovingly bicker a bit before the credits roll
That’s the plot to the first three games (as far as I can remember). It’s getting formulaic, and predictable at this point. I sincerely hope they at least something at least a little different in the next game.
Before I continue, you should understand that I didn’t hate this game entirely. Just because I was a little disappointed, that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy playing it.
The graphics were, as usual, very good. It was a gorgeous game with a lot of interesting locations to visit. The controls were very smooth, although I missed the assisted-aiming feature (to be fair, I may have just not been able to figure out how to turn it on). I also didn’t hate the jumping puzzles in this one.
One plot-related point I did really like was the villain. Marlowe was a much more interesting villain than the villains from the other two games. Most of the reason was because she actually meant something to the main characters. I appreciate that sort of thing.
I also really enjoyed getting to see young Nathan growing up and getting his origin story. That was probably my favorite part of the game.
Overall, it was a bit disappointing as a part of the series, but an enjoyable game to play through at least. It didn’t kill my love of the series, and I am really looking forward to playing the fourth of the Nathan Drake games and starting on some of the spinoffs.