Failing to Contain my Excitement


*This post is spoiler free*

I went to bed Sunday night convinced that I would not be receiving my copy of Uncharted 3 in time for the UK launch on the 2nd November. My pre-order had still not been despatched and I had consigned myself to another two or three evenings of Arkham City Challenge Maps; not a bad substitute, but still not quite Drake. However, my prospects of having a copy in hand come 02/11 drastically improved when, early Monday morning, I checked my emails to find a despatch notification for Uncharted 3.

My fortunes continued to improve when later that morning I received a text from my wife regarding a welcome arrival. Uncharted 3 had been delivered - my wife was all too aware of how excited I was and understood that I must be informed of its arrival at any cost - and a full two days before its official release. Ways of shutting the office and getting home early occupied my mind for the rest of the day, but I manged to temper my excitement and remain at my desk until 5pm. For the first time in months I actually left work on time, put pedal to the metal and sped home. I wolfed-down some dinner and hurriedly unwrapped my copy. With hands trembling and pants pissed, I threw it on and spent most of the evening grinning like a child at Christmas, mesmerised by a game that could never be anything less than spectacular.

It is a rare occurrence that I get this excited about a video game - at least since reaching puberty - and find myself so strongly anticipating a new release. I'm usually happy to wait a few weeks for the inevitable price drop, only pre-ordering half a dozen or so games per year, but Uncharted 3 had to be a day one purchase and I hoped for a premature arrival. The last game that I remember being this excited for was Uncharted 2 back in 2009. Having played the first game earlier that year, being wowed by the E3 and Gamescon trailers, and treated to a beta that assuaged my concerns regarding the multiplayer, I was well and truly prepped for adventure come October 13th.

Living in Japan at the time, and unwilling to wait the two extra days for the considerably cheaper Japanese version, which included a full English voice track, I liaised with my local import shop countless times in the week leading up to release, trying to get a handle on when exactly they would be receiving their shipment. I'm sure fielding daily calls from an Englishman inquiring about Uncharted 2 in broken Japanese was the highlight of their daily routine. But the pestering paid off, and they put a copy aside from the first batch. I near sprinted the two miles from office to Akihabara, decked out in suit and tie at a time of year when it is still relatively hot, to grab my copy and get stuck in. The journey home was unbearable, but it was well worth it. The rest is Uncharted history, and two years later I continue to dip back into my favourite game of this generation.


Pre-Drake, Metal Gear Solid 4 was my reason for buying a PS3. I had held off on the costly upgrade, making do with my PSP, PS2 and Wii, but decided that I would splurge when Hideo Kojima's latest was about to hit the shelves. That is exactly what I did when I laid-down around 55,000 yen (ish) in April 2008 for the console, an extra controller, Ridge Racer 7, and Resistance, followed by Call of Duty 4 a few days later, and all in preparation for MGS4 in June. A costly purchase, but worth every penny/yen.

Jumping back two generations, the prolonged wait for Final Fantasy IX was torturous. Having discovered the series the year previous, and playing VII and VIII multiple times in preparation, the wait was exasperating. Though it sounds ridiculous now, the other PS1 game that I found myself counting down the days for was Mission Impossible, which I had convinced myself would be a perfect hybrid of what were my two favourite, non-FF series: Metal Gear Solid and Syphon Filter. Unfortunately, it turned out to be shit. The only other game I recall getting myself worked-up over at launch was NBA Live '97 on the Saturn, but I have told that story before, and won't repeat it here.

With the possible exception of a fourth Timesplitters, we may reach Uncharted 4 before I get this excited again about a new game. I still enjoy Final Fantasy, and I'll always make time for a new entry in the main series, but my days of pre-orders months in advance and wasting money on expensive soundtracks are well and truly behind me. Sonic may be an old favourite, but he has a lot a grovelling to do before I'll anticipate a new entry, though I'm sure I'll give Generations a whirl at some point, and I'm just a bit confused about where the Metal Gear Solid franchise is headed, and will reserve my excitement until I've seen something substantial regarding Rising.

From what I have experienced thus far - I'm guessing I'm around two thirds of the way through the campaign - it was well worth the wait. I'll have some impressions up here in the next week or so, and in the meantime perhaps I'll see some of you online for co-op and competitive multiplayer (PSN tag - talkingbook).

Comments

  1. I'm almost done with Uncharted 2, and I get why this franchise gets all the praise it does. Drake's Fortune was a fantastic game, that was fun to play and beautiful to look at. Among Thieves is Drake's Fortune times 10! I'm almost done with UC 2 and now I'm looking forward to 3...

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  2. Naughty Dog games are the video game event for me. I can't stop playing Uncharted 3. So addictive. I am having a blast with it. Hope to catch you for some online some time.

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  3. @ Ceva - Great games. Did you have a chance to check out the multiplayer and co-op in Uncharted 2?

    @ Trip - Just finished the story and looking forward to jumping into the multiplayer this weekend. Hopefully see you on there.

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  4. @toomanywires - Not yet really. I played 1 versus match and died 17 times. I also only killed 4 people... lol. I'll check it out again after I beat the game, but I get the feeling everyone will be busy playing UC3.

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  5. It gets easier the more you play it and you learn not to approach it like the single player. There is a lot more running and gunning in multi, as opposed to the cover-and-fire in the campaign, and you are also able to sprint. I'm pretty average at it, but it is really good fun.

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