Reviews of Naughty Dog’s Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End are now out in the wild, answering the question of whether Nathan Drake’s last adventure can live up to the hype.
When Naughty Dog confirmed that Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End would be Nathan Drake’s last adventure, the studio put a lot of pressure on itself to deliver a satisfying closing chapter. Today, the game’s review embargo is lifted, so we’ll finally find out how the finished product turned out.
Over the past decade, the Uncharted series has become something of a flagship franchise for the PlayStation brand. It seems that A Thief’s End will truly be his final outing — at least in terms of interactive entertainment, as a film adaptation is set to release next year.
Fortunately, it seems like the team at Naughty Dog has gone above and beyond, delivering a game that surprises and satisfies in equal measure. Here’s the early world on whether A Thief’s End closes the Uncharted series out with a bang or a whimper.
Game Rant (Anthony Taormina)
Uncharted 4 sees Naughty Dog push the bar for excellence to a new height, with stunning visuals, next-level character work, and one of the best games of this generation.
Gamespot (Mike Mahardy)
In both its momentous set pieces and its intimate, personal moments, Uncharted 4 drives its narrative forward with a rare understanding of its characters, its world, and the gameplay tying them all together. It’s a stunning combination of disparate parts. It’s a breathtaking marvel of a game.
Videogamer (Steven Burns)
So there goes Nathan Drake, off into the sunset, and with him a whole generation of memories and other lies. The first three games haven’t aged well, and so it’s a relief that Uncharted 4, base similarities aside, feels markedly different to them. It’s a confident, assured, and rather more intelligent game than it first appears, and a strong end to the series.
Polygon (Griffin McElroy)
A Thief’s End presents a pitch-perfect conclusion to the Uncharted series, and should serve as a benchmark for other franchises approaching their twilight years. There are no threads left unresolved, no relationships left unexplored and no shirts left partially untucked. It’s as cathartic an ending as you could hope for, and then some.
USGamer (Mike Williams)
Uncharted 4 is a fitting end for Nathan Drake. For its first full outing on PlayStation 4, Naughty Dog brings together all of its technical and storytelling mastery to create an amazing adventure. The game absolutely stands alongside previous entries in the series and Uncharted fans won’t be disappointed.
Destructoid (Steven Hansen)
Stunning art direction; satisfying game feel; a willingness to shake up third-person action conventions, to know when to introduce variety, or let a foot up off the gas; excellent dialogue that reveals a lot without oversharing; and a heck of a conclusion. A thief couldn’t ask for a better end.
By any estimate, that’s a pretty impressive set of responses to such a well-hyped release. It seems that Naughty Dog has been able to blend the strong characterization and narrative confidence of The Last of Us with the different tone of the Uncharted series, as well as adding some new gameplay elements to boot.
However, perhaps the most exciting part of these impressions are the references to the risks the game takes — it certainly doesn’t sound like a safe sequel. Given Naughty Dog’s previous comments about wanting to play with the emotions of players, it certainly sounds like they accomplished their goal.
Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End will release for the PlayStation 4 on May 10, 2016.