Spoilers for the end of Uncharted: Lost Legacy
That was a very, very long train.
Only a little bit frustrating. All in all, a very exciting finish. The train, the jeeps, swinging back from jeep to train, etc. Getting to use a jeep gun, swinging, great stuff. Some of it did feel a little like checking boxes, though. A couple things on the side of the car to dodge (Hey, remember? From two!) and getting pulled behind a jeep for a little (Hey, remember? From four!) but, all in all, very exciting stuff. More “I feel like an action hero!” Good ending. Little bit too much of the teeth gnashing last screaming dialog of the villain, but nothing’s perfect.
All in all, good game. I liked it. Great, action movie fun.
And I’m gonna praise something we don’t usually talk about (if ever): the credits. Seriously.
These were movie style credits. Upbeat music, little cartoony things, a funny cutscene in the middle, just like an action movie, and that was GREAT. Credits in movies are like that for a reason: they give you that last little jolt of excitement, last little laugh, a reminder that this was FUN, and they let you wind down from the excitement and the fun. Usually games just go straight to the orchestral or electronic names scrolling until the after credit scene, but this way worked far better.
PFTL. We even notice the credits.
Now, you mentioned yesterday about strange individual decisions yesterday, and said I should play until the very end and we’ll talk. Well, here I am. So I figure you want to talk about some combination of a) Chloe letting Asav die, b) Nadine joining up with Chloe, c) both of them “going straight” and giving the tusk back to the ministry of culture or d) Sam coming back at all.
I’m guessing it’s probably A. But I’ll hand it over to you. I played first. Now you talk later.
It was a long train! But yeah, mostly a fun and exciting one. And you could keep making progress, since even if you died, you’d usually come back further along than the last time you started, so there wasn’t a sense of getting stalled anywhere.
I mainly wanted to discuss the decision not to keep the tusk. Letting Asav die, whatever. That guy was a jerk and tried to kill them on numerous occasions. I’m fine with both Chloe and Nadine being willing to let him die. Sam had at least been helping Nadine recently, and never actively tried to murder her with his bare hands: it makes sense to me that she wouldn’t feel right just abandoning him to drown. Asav? No such qualms.
But that choice to give back the tusk…that felt a lot more out of character. Like…so Chloe is not only doing good deeds to help a specific group of people in a specific marketplace (and even more specifically, one little girl with whom she formed a connection), now she’s doing good deeds to help national history museums or whatever? Hm. That felt like a change of pace for her.
There was one bit you were NOT resurrected past the guy. It was the armored guy. I hate armored guys.
Ok, C then.
I wasn’t all that troubled in terms of the arc of the narrative. The tusk starts out as just a treasure, a thing one goes and gets for money. She ALSO seems to think that her father, at some level, was chasing it for the same reason, if not just as a treasure hunting thief, then as someone who was going to build a career and fame and fortune off of finding it. When she realizes that he did find the tusk, and that HE realized it was bigger than all that, she came to the realization that maybe there were more important things to do with it.
It’s all from that scene where she realizes her dad was there. In that scene, we get things like “It wasn’t just a depiction of their kings, it was THEM,” which imbue the tusk with more importance than just “golden thingy.” When she ends that scene with “I can’t let Asav get that tusk,” and Nadine replies “No, we can’t,” it’s pretty clear that she’s not finishing that sentence with “because we want the money.” She’s finishing it with “because that tusk is too important to let it fall into a selfish asshole’s hands. It should be with someone who will treasure it for what it is.”
Because I took her decision at the end not so much as “I want to preserve culture” but more as “I want this special thing protected.” After all, when she happily is the “selfish dickhead” that Nadine partners with so they can go become treasure hunters, you don’t get that the two of them are going to go off being the Indiana Jones “IT BELONGS IN A MUSEUM!” types. No, they want this particular treasure saved, and now on to more lootin’ and raidin’. At least that’s how I read it.
But on the subject of culture……and the whole “It was THEM” deal…..
What did you make of the fact that they felt the need to make Chloe part Indian? That kind of came out of left field. I don’t remember anything like that in the Nathan games, so it seemed like something where they were avoiding offense or making a point or something. I never really got that. And I would have had a whole lot of trouble if she had been all “No! This is not the way we preserve OUR culture!” to Asav at the end. Just, no.
It was an odd choice, and obviously a very conscious one. And I’m not sure if it added anything, or what it was even trying to add.
Though back to C, and before we go down the “why is she Indian” road…
another thing they might be doing in the “IT BELONGS IN A MUSEUM” mold is, looking towards sequels (which there may well be), differentiating Chloe from her twin, Lara Croft. Lara isn’t really all that altruistic. Her motivations are complex, but she is no do gooder. By making Chloe more of the benevolent, archeology minded treasure hunter, a la Indiana Jones, there’s some difference there in a narrative sense.
And it wouldn’t be that much of a stretch. She sure knew tons about the history of all of this stuff.
As for your point on C…that’s true. Giving her some kind of personal tie to the history of these items can make it more reasonable that she wants to save and preserve them for everyone, rather than just have them locked up in a personal collection (which she wouldn’t care about as long as she got paid, otherwise).
As to the question about her heritage, OK, yeah, we should talk about that because they did not give us enough information for me to decide whether I liked that or not. Because…I admit I’m confused here and may have missed something, but do we know which of her parents was Indian? Frazer, presumably her father, doesn’t sound like an Indian name (although maybe he changed it…or had some non-Indian heritage himself), so one kind of thinks it was her mother?
Which makes it all rather awkward that her mother is never once mentioned and this whole quest is about her (non-Indian?) father’s journey to discover…Indian history…which his (presumably Indian?) wife/partner never had any comment on or anything to add to or…I mean…if you’re going to give the character Indian heritage maybe make the parent she got that from SLIGHTLY RELEVANT? Somehow? Just a thought?
Or did I miss something, and it WAS in fact her father who was Indian? Because if so I retract a lot of my puzzled annoyance and replace it with “OK, yeah, that works,” because that would make this whole “inspirational dead dad” thing a bit more interesting (if she’s seeking out her own heritage as well as following his footsteps professionally because…inspiring profession).
And to be sure, there’s no reason she would have to have his name, that’s just the expectation (thanks, patriarchy!). So, if that’s the case, I’m kind of into it? Except that maybe they could have made it a little clearer?
Did I miss something? Did they say if it was her dad? If not, I may just have to put that into the novel I read between the lines, because I do think it kind of works that way. Otherwise, it doesn’t work very well at all.
And either way, I really feel like it could have been more clearly stated so that it either meant something or didn’t. I dunno, as written, it’s kind of weird.
On C: That’s how I read it. Because she never really goes on about the tusk’s place in history (much) or its beauty or whatever. She talks about far more about how important it is to her personally.
I hope we get a sequel to find out. I’d play more AS CHLOE.
On point 2: Wow. Your question laden rant captured my own confusion with her Indian heritage both literally and metaphorically. That’s quite an accomplishment of blogging. I salute you.
I wish I remembered the conversation in which she was talking about her parents and when she was sent off to Australia, but that was a while ago. I think it was that her dad was Aussie/British/whatever and he married an Indian woman, but he, himself, was into Indian culture.
Frankly, this would’ve been one game where the whole “Use an Aussie, pretend they’re British” thing would’ve been fine with me, as we could’ve had some good British colonial vs. Asav themage, but, unfortunately, Claudia Black is Australian.
That is the only time I’ll say “unfortunately, Claudia Black” in a sentence that isn’t “Unfortunately, Claudia Black isn’t in this.”
Sadly, an all-too-common lament.
Yeah, I don’t remember the details either. But I do have the vague and possibly mistaken sense that it was her father who was the non-Indian in the union. Which if true really makes it extra weird to me that her mother is never mentioned. It almost becomes a case of “India is of special interest to me because my father was interested in it,” full stop, never mind the little detail that his interest included marrying?–having a brief torrid affair with?–maintaining a long, friendly, non-marital relationship that on one drunken occasion led to…? we don’t know!–an Indian woman.
I mean, we know nothing here! And maybe it’s because there’s nothing to tell, but one would IMAGINE that if one’s MOTHER were Indian, that might in SOME WAY feature in one’s personal interest in the history and culture of the Indian continent JUST A LITTLE. Maybe. As a side note. A little “oh yeah and there’s mom” to add to the saga of one’s father’s intense professional interest and long artifact-hunting journey and so forth.
I don’t know. It just seems weird.
People. Just make her father be the one who was Indian. They have archeology professors in India, you know! That way her desire to follow in his footsteps becomes a desire to learn more about herself and her own heritage, as well as just to succeed where (she thought) he failed. At…you know…metaphorically conquering the mysteries of her mother’s country or something weird and kind of unwholesome when you look at it that way.
It could even be all complicated and angsty because maybe she feels guilty about having ‘denied’ that part of herself in the past by using her mother’s name because it was easier to pronounce in Australia or something! There could have been a story there, if they’d wanted!
And, as we discussed at near-interminable length, we’re kind of done with that particular story, but since they went that route, they could have at least GONE there. As it is, we’re left unsatisfied, with these faintly troubling questions that shall probably never be answered.
However, I will stress that all this aside, I did very much enjoy the game and would totally play another one, if they wanted to address those or any other questions in the future.
Sigh. So many questions. That’ll remain unanswered as, even if there is another game (and I hope there is), it’s very unlikely to be set in India, thus making her heritage less relevant. I mean, what are they gonna do, go for Ganesh’s OTHER tusk? Adventure games, as a general rule, do not visit the same place twice.
Ah, well. Still a really good game.
Yes! Ganesh’s other tusk remains at large and we must find it!
But no, you’re right, even if that was the plot, we’d find out it had been stolen and was now in Siberia or something. They don’t like to reuse locations, lest people complain that “this is the same as the last game!”
So we will probably never know. Thanks for leaving all these loose ends, game.
I still want to play another one.
I’d play another one, too. Even without huge themes. Shit, Naughty Dog’s next game will have themes a plenty and I figure we may still harken back to the fun of PLAYING AS CHLOE! I’d hit x to order the sequel after the (very well done) credits.
I am now in the car. I will be for the next three hours or so as kids have to be everywhere except in the same place.
How does this happen?
Poor life decisions, my friend. Poor life decisions.
But yeah, I forgot to respond to your comments on the credits. Nothing much to add, but I agree, those were fun, smart credits. I always let them play anyway, but I don’t usually pay much attention to them, and these I actually watched for a while. (Also, which you didn’t play, Flower. That had nifty credits. You actually moved through them, and the names would kind of bloom around you in the theme of the game–quite cool.)
Ooo! Theme credits! Nice.
This was a terrible life choice. Cuz of snow, play practice was canceled last week. Make up conflicted with something junior had, so, today, get nugget, take him to play, come back, get junior, take him to play so he can rehearse with the other cast, grab nugget, watch everyone play ipad (how did anyone raise kids before iPads?) for an hour, grab junior, go home at six. Cuz play? Total other side of town. At rush hour. Can’t go home. Oh, and they have regular play practice tomorrow. And they all had to eat in the car.
So I’m freezing, everything stinks of peanut butter, my ass hurts and I’m not playing games. Or drinking. Cuz car.
At least there are iPads.
Ugh. Dude. Sympathy.
At least there are iPads.