Disclaimer: An Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection review code was provided by Sony PlayStation for this review.
Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves is a repackaged bundle of Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and its successful Hindi mythology spin-off featuring the return of the Uncharted 2 fan-favorite Chloe Frazer and Uncharted 4 deuteragonist Nadine Ross. And featuring updated graphical performance enhancements for the PS4 Pro and PS5 consoles such as improved framerate, 4K UHD television compatibility, and the ability to choose between “fidelity” and “performance” in the graphics options, with fidelity mode favoring greater visual detail over speed and input response times. For those unaware, A Thief’s End is the final chapter in the story of series protagonist Nathan Drake. The story follows an older Nathan Drake who reunites with his long-lost older brother Samuel in an attempt to find the hidden treasure of Captain Henry Avery valued at $400 million and the mythical pirate utopia known as Libertalia. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy follows Chloe and Nadine as they travel to India in search of the legendary Hoysala Empire and the fabled Tusk of Ganesh. Previous versions of both titles earned the barrier-free ratings at DAGERSystem, and since both games are intact this remains the case.
Across both entries, motor-impaired players will have nothing to worry about, as aiming a weapon can be toggled in the accessibility menu, and the camera can be made to follow the player character automatically, as well as a wonderful aim assist that once again automatically highlights both hostiles and objects that can be interacted with by shooting them. The aforementioned highlighter not only reveals foes’ positions even while hiding in cover, but also snaps the player’s aim to the highlighted enemy or object, and all of these features are more responsive than ever courtesy of enhanced framerates. Uncharted 4 is a good starting point for those who favor action over problem solving, as this entry has more adrenaline-pumping shootouts than any of the three entries preceding it, but the handful of puzzles will give players plenty to think about without being overly complex.
In Legacy there’s more of an emphasis on puzzles for players who enjoy an intellectual challenge, with my personal favorite being the one where players must correctly position the statue of Parashurama. One feature I found to be present in this version that I don’t previously recall, is that if you linger on a puzzle long enough you will actually be explicitly told how to complete it by Nadine. There are sections involving having to jump from grapple point to grapple point, which can be a small challenge due to the limited amount of time you have to reach the next grapple spot, but these sections are very few and far between so I don’t consider it to be a barrier. Haptic feedback is used to great effect in both entries and is now an asset to accessibility. Chloe’s Queen’s Ruby bracelet (if acquired) will give a tactile cue with intensity that increases the closer one gets to a hidden treasure, and the resistance of adaptive triggers is different based on the weapon currently in use or the stability of the point you latch onto with the grappling hook.
Just like in the initial release, I don’t see anything within either of these two entries that constitutes a visual barrier, and the new settings make it an even bigger blast to play due to brighter colors making climbable surfaces more distinguishable and an upgraded resolution allowing for a sharper image.
The auditory side of things remains as accessible as ever, as neither title requires hearing to enjoy. The automatic lock-on makes target acquisition simple, and the hint system and its large white arrow makes pathfinding easy when lost so there’s no need to hear an NPC constantly repeat themselves. Those who prefer to use headphones now have the added benefit of being able to use their Pulse 3D Headset to activate directional audio thus making identifying the direction of a sound a breeze.
To conclude, Naughty Dog continues to set an example in the industry of what an accessible game should be. The technology afforded to them by the PlayStation 5 allows them to make two of the most accessible action-adventure titles in recent memory even more approachable, and anyone fortunate enough to own a PS5 shouldn’t miss the opportunity to play them in the most pristine condition they’ve ever been.