Uncharted 3 Multiplayer Beta Community Split

Many Fans of the Series Upset with New Features

June 29, 2011 by

The Uncharted 3 beta was released not even 24 hours ago and the official forums are already flooded with a mix of praise and complaints from fans of Uncharted 2‘s multiplayer. I had a chance to get my hands on the same multiplayer build at E3 earlier this month and voiced some of the same concerns that are now constantly being brought up on Naughty Dog’s forums. So is Uncharted 3 an evolution in multiplayer gaming or a trainwreck of new features?

Uncharted 2‘s multiplayer was praised for its simplicity: players fought in 5 vs. 5 battles where everyone started with the same stock weapons and fought to pick up more powerful weapons throughout the map. The only customization players had was choosing which player model they used when playing as a hero or villain and which two boosters they used. Boosters worked similarly to perks in Call of Duty, but almost everyone who knew what they were doing used the same two boosters and refused to use anything else due to how worthless the other boosters were, somewhat defeating the purpose.

While the Uncharted 3 multiplayer is filled with tons of bugs and glitches at the moment in its early beta stages (because it’s not a glorified demo), that’s not the biggest problem players are having. The problem that most are having is with the vast amount of new features and changes to how the game plays. Players who loved Uncharted 2‘s simple, yet perfected, multiplayer are up in arms with how complex Uncharted 3‘s multiplayer has become. Unlike most developers who tend to release the exact same version of their multiplayer year after year with minor tweaks, Naughty Dog has revamped just about everything in Uncharted 3.

The first thing different is the overall pacing of the game, which feels noticeably slower than Uncharted 2. Players now move slower and more sluggishly in order to empathize use of U3‘s new sprint feature. U2 had no ability for players to sprint, which allowed players to constantly run at a faster pace. Maps are also slightly bigger than in U2, which creates pauses in the nonstop action that smaller maps seemed to create. Since there are only two maps currently in the beta, there’s no telling how big or small the rest of the maps will be. Multiplayer games are also designed unlike anything else in gaming with matches on maps like Airstrip not only taking place on two completely different maps, but the first map featuring a moving plane that’s about to take off with vehicles chasing after it. Players can jump from moving vehicle to moving vehicle and even make their way inside the plane all in real time; it’s truly amazing and unlike anything you’ve ever seen in multiplayer.

One of the biggest changes is how weapons have been tweaked and allow players to pick and modify their weapons with upgrades before they enter matches. I mentioned in my E3 article how I instantly noticed a change in the accuracy of guns during my limited time with U3‘s multiplayer. That’s because I used the new AK47, which in its current state is almost worthless. Uncharted 2‘s multiplayer allowed players to use weapons like the AK47 at any range and with pinpoint accuracy. Uncharted 3 now features more realistic recoil when firing guns; however, Naughty Dog has gone a little overboard and made the AK so hard to keep on a target when firing that the gun now needs to be fired in bursts. Having to fire in bursts wouldn’t be a problem, except for the fact that there’s a more powerful gun called the GMAL (U2‘s FAL), which automatically fires in bursts and is more accurate and powerful at any range.

While players coming from U2 aren’t happy with the minor tweaks, the addition of Kickbacks and Power Plays are what seem to have people the most upset over balancing issues. Kickbacks allow players to use a custom power-up once reaching a certain amount of kills, similar to Call of Duty‘s kill streak system mixed with Homefront‘s buy-what-you-want-at-any-time during the game system. The Kickback system allows for abilities like speed boosts, no reloading, instantly equipping an RPG, and even the ability to transform into a swarm of spiders. To counter players getting Kickback power-ups, there’s also a new Power Play system that goes into effect when a match starts to become lopsided. Teams that are losing by a significant amount are given chances to kill players marked on the other team for extra points and can also be given the ability to see where enemies are. There’s even the ability to spend a significantly large amount of money before each game and purchase a one-time-use upgrade like bullets with increased damage.

One of the most unique new features is something I’ve never seen in a multiplayer shooter before and works like a role-playing game. Treasures can randomly drop from enemies after they’ve been killed, which players who made the kill can then pick up. But the treasures aren’t dealing with objectives or the score of the game; instead, treasures picked up go towards a player’s overall character progression. There’s an entire list of treasure sets that can be viewed from the menu, with each set unlocking new customizable items like clothing to dress your character in. It’s a really neat feature that will at times have you debating whether to run into the heat of battle to pick up a potentially rare treasure which could be the last piece you need to unlock that bad-ass face mask you’ve been wanting for your character.

With all the new features, it’s easy to see how Uncharted 3‘s beta can seem foreign to players coming from Uncharted 2 and be upsetting. Even experts from U2 will feel like noobs as they figure out all the new features and learn which guns they’re now best with. While the game still needs a lot of work, the overall gameplay and features look like an improvement over the last game. At first it might seem like Naughty Dog is trying to do too much with multiplayer, but with the point of the beta being to see how the community reacts to changes and for Naughty Dog to tweak the game to perfection, we’re sure to end up with another great multiplayer game, and not just a rehashed version of the last. The Uncharted 3 multiplayer beta runs from June 28 – July 13 and is available to anyone who has PlayStation Plus, a copy of Infamous 2, or a beta key.

  • Mark101

    Wow an actual honest article that’s not licking NaughtyDogs arse

    Most sites would just think “Oh it”s ND they do everything right”

    I don’t care about glitches, poor graphics, animations etc because that’s all stuff which ND will improve but they need to get rid of Kickbacks OR let us use them just ONCE in a match. Powerplays should be scrapped aswell.

    The point is it feels like ND don’t care about the players who made U2 what it is today, they’re basicaly just telling us “if you don’t like it, play Hardcore”….why should we be shoved into Hardcore mode and forgotten about just so they don’t have to listen to long time U2 players complaints.

    Thanks ND for making this into a TP COD clone.

    • uhmmmmm

      that’s what Hardcore mode is for…

    • Sobekflakmonkey

      Are you an idiot?

      No, honestly, are you an idiot?

      It’s people like you who ruin games, I’m sick of your BS “ND don’t care about the players who made U2 what it is today”, you should know…you didn’t make ANYTHING! NOTHING! ND worked super hard to make something they believed would be good, and they are doing that again, and whats with “but they need to get rid of Kickbacks OR let us use them just ONCE in a match. Powerplays should be scrapped aswell.” and “….why should we be shoved into Hardcore mode and forgotten about just
      so they don’t have to listen to long time U2 players complaints.” Quite frankly you sound like a sniveling wining brat who isn’t getting HIS or HER WAY, “Shoved into Hardcore mod and forgotten”? you can’t be serious….you know why Hardcore mode is there??? well it’s clearly not there because they FORGOT about you and your hoard of mentally challenged buddy’s who don’t like change, like…really? You honestly couldn’t be anymore stupid if you tried, it’s just mind boggling sometimes, jeez, it’s people like you who make me angry the most, like…HARDCORE MODE! THERE IT IS! THERES YOUR NO KICKBACKS AND NO POWER PLAYS! but STILL you say “….why should we be shoved into Hardcore mode and forgotten about just
      so they don’t have to listen to long time U2 players complaints.” Just…Wow..

  • Mrdude

    For everyone bitching about boosters and power plays and kickbacks…that’s what Hardcore mode is for you whiners…

  • Sky

    Oh shut the hell you guys, the guy is right. Why should U2 veterens be tied down to Hardcore mode, were the ones who made U2 what it was. Most people who didn’t even give a crap about U2’s online care so much now.

    Don’t tell us to stick to hardcore…ND should be giving us better and more options for U2 veterens. Not just stuffing us all into Hardcore mode. Don’t become ND’s lap dog

  • LeChoke

    Honestly, I played U2’s multiplayer for many days total, and I feel right at home with U3. I find that the game is more like what it was when U2 first came out, such as the boosted health and low weapon damage. Also, I don’t think the load out issue is an issue at all – look at any map in U2. There were FAL’s around the beginning of every stage. So after 5 seconds, if the players chose to, they would have a FAL. Instead of just placing them right there, ND decided to let the players choose to load out with the G-MAL. As for the option of loading out with the dragon sniper, it is less powerful than last game and takes a headshot to kill someone, so I really don’t view that as being unfair. Medal kickbacks are something I think we’ll see a tweak in by the final game. My guess is that they’ll only be able to be used once during a match. As for the more sluggish movement, yes, it is slower, but it’s not as bad as everyone is making it out to be. Lastly, to the person who said this is a TP COD clone, clearly you have never played COD because this is FAR from it.

  • Listen to these clowns.. we made uncharted what it is.. sure you did.  That would be some feat to accomplish while sitting on your fat collective asses holding a controller munching on some cheetos.  Just be thankful ND is beta testing unlike cod which year after year shovels out broken and gimped online and the fools keep sucking it up.  Hopefully, some of these issues mentioned will be ironed out by launch and what will be left is a very tight multiplayer experience.  I will never denigrate a developer for trying new things, especially a successful one who lovingly crafts brilliant single and multiplayer experiences.  I for one would have been hugely disappointed if ND had just rehashed the multiplayer and simply dressed it up without implementing new experiences.  You should be thanking them for not expecting you to be fools (as other developers do) and simply open your wallets to be fleeced.

  • WEL

    the AK is better for blind fire than the Fal though 

  • Anonymous

    Games are supposed to be pushed. Adding features that make you change your play method, make you think and adapt. A rehash of Uncharted 2 would have been poor. Hardcore fans might say we made U2 what it is. No you did not, everyone who purchased the game allowed it to be what it is.  Your whining because you wanted to load up the beta and own everyone so you could go on about how great you are, just like COD fans who are served the same dinner every year so they can carry on without thought.
    The power plays are great and funny. They allow the game to balance out and add some nice shifts between the players. The kick backs are good and seeing as everyone has the chance to unlock them then that’s fair. To attract more gamers is their mission, to offer more appeal and better variation.
    I applaud ND for stepping out and experimenting. Gamers like developers have become lazy, same thing, different cover, it’s about time things changed.

  • Capjaksparrow88

    I played Uncharted 2 a bunch and I think Uncharted 3 is even better. I think the “veterans” need to stop whining and just play hardcore if they don’t enjoy the fun multiplayer. Naughty Dog likes to expand on their games, not keep them the same in every iteration (Halo, Cod, Gears). Please sit back and enjoy the damn game or play something worse because right now, Uncharted 3 is some of the most fun I’ve had online.

  • ChronosRaikou

    Im a UC2 vet and have adjusted to the new mechanics pretty easily. Most of my matches, im leading my team with 15-22 kills easy. 

  • i have been destroying with the ak47 it just takes practice. I am glad that the ak can no longer cross-map, it made the game too easy and all the other guns were useless. People just dont like change the game is good. its not friendly towards noobs which unfortunately hurts the games reception. recoil is fine deal with it.

  • Sobekflakmonkey

    Sky…once again…are you an idiot?

    You don’t think other people are new to Uncharted 3 also?
    Huh? You don’t think other people are having to get used to these new mechanics?
    I’m a U2 “Vet” myself, but I don’t feel the need to put myself on a pedestal like the rest of you
    friggin strange control freaks who are afraid of change, like…what did you want? they gave you
    a mode where you can play classic Uncharted MP and still, you want something more?
    Do you just want the game to be a rehash of the second Uncharted game? Well it sure as
    hell sounds like it, like…how can you not see that what your saying is childish?
    U2 “Vets” PFFFFFT, get over yourself you don’t deserve shit.

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