There’s a good handful of game modes in the beta, too: the classic Team Deathmatch; a new addition in the form of Three Team Deathmatch, which puts three teams of two players against each other; a Free For All mode; a Co-op Arena which has your team of three doing certain tasks such as getting treasure or killing enemies in a certain zone, against AI. And then there’s Hardcore, which removes all Boosters and Kickbacks, leaving it all up to your skill alone.
You can now collect treasures in multiplayer, another thing carried over from the single player. These are dropped by enemies, or alternatively found in the treasure chests that appear on the map. These treasure chests also can give you Paid Boosters or Medals. Power Weapons can also be found dotted around the map; RPGs, Pistoles, bolt-action Snipers which you can’t add to your arsenal by normal means.
The customisation is great, too. You can choose either one of the heroes from the game such as Sully or Drake and change their clothes, once you’ve unlocked them, or choose a generic hero or villain and pick their skin, clothes and voice. Loadouts, which act as different classes, can also be edited. There’s a good choice of weapons, with the returning AK-47, Dragon Sniper and some new ones such as the M9 and the G-MAL. Different Mods can be added to these weapons, for faster reloading, bigger clips and other similar additions. Finally, as if there wasn’t enough customisation already, you can create an emblem for yourself which other players will see and if you’re the top player, it will appear around the map.
Another thing that makes the multiplayer more than just a fight to the death are the Powerplays – where a selected team gets an advantage such as double damage, although sometimes it will change the game into an assassination mode, in which one player is the marked man and his team must protect him from the opposing team. The included Buddy System works rather well: everyone is assigned a buddy, and you can spawn on them or pick up treasures for them and vice versa. Perhaps the best thing about this is the fact you can high five over a dead enemy and gain a medal for doing so.
There’s a lot of content in the beta and that’s just the stuff in-game. In the menus there’s a Party system, Facebook integration, Cinema mode in which you can watch back how bad you were and edit it to make yourself look good and even Uncharted TV, which features clips from the game, trailers and developer commentary. The beta looks great too – naturally – and the lighting in particular is wonderful. If this is just the beta, I can’t wait to see what the full game has in store for us.
There are a lot of things to unlock and collect in the beta alone, so when Uncharted 3 comes along, it seems the multiplayer will have a lot to offer. It’s a lot of fun and fans of the previous game’s multiplayer will love this. It might even convert non-fans too; I was always a lover of the story mode, but this multiplayer beta proves that the online portion of Uncharted 3 may just be too good to miss.