534 Uncharted's Vocal Hints

A small but important detail I noticed in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End is their use of character vocals to deliver puzzle and gameplay hints.

It’s usually a smart idea (for immersion’s sake, I guess) to turn off the hints in Uncharted games. They’re certainly useful, and only show up after a certain amount of time of the player being stuck, but they’re usually too revealing, as far as “hints” go anyway. Something nice in the new entry is that Nathan the main character, and other characters too, will sometimes say things out loud that assist the player in what they need to do next. I imagine some of these are pretty smartly programmed into the game, for example maybe if the player tries to do a certain action X number of times, play the audio hint to redirect them closer to the actual solution.

The first time I encountered it, I was trying to climb up some gears in a clock tower (not a weird activity for Nathan Drake if you’ve played an Uncharted game before…), but couldn’t seem to figure out how to progress. After a few times of trying, Nathan says “Alrighty, just need to ride this gear up to transfer over to the platform.” It was slightly more eloquent than that obviously, and was delivered in such a casual way that it didn’t feel like an obvious “hint.” I really enjoyed the effectiveness of this in terms of immersion and game progression.

Naughty Dog continues to surprise and delight. :)

[ Today I Was Playing: Steamworld Heist and Fire Emblem Fates Birthright ]

June 17, 2016

#game-mechanic-system, #game-review-critique