Time Crisis and Uncharted are two of my favorite game series of all time. Whenever someone asks why, my answer is this: They make me feel like an action movie hero.
I’m sure many people share this straightforward sentiment—after all, Time Crisis and Uncharted are both hailed for their action-packed gameplay—but I have a handful specific reasons upon which I’d like to elaborate today.
In my eyes, Time Crisis best captures the “aerobic” nature of being an action hero. Physically pointing and shooting a gun at yucky VSSE foes while deftly dodging their attacks with the proprietary foot pedals is a high-energy activity that more than makes up for the lack of exploration for which rail shooters are known.
On top of that, the narratives woven throughout each entry strike me as particularly “pulpy,” chocked full of dastardly villains and sky-high stakes. Although not even I play Time Crisis solely for the story, the onslaught of climactic beats never ceases to captivate my attention and, once again, make me feel like an action movie hero.
Compared to something like, say, Johnny Nero Action Hero, there’s no competition. Time Crisis captures the lighthearted, do-gooder side of the action genre so spectacularly accurately that I can’t help but feel invested. I may as well the guy leaping in front of fiery explosions and relinquishing foreign nations from totalitarian regimes.
Uncharted goes for more a “rogue” approach, equally effectively documenting the journeys of a dashing treasure hunter who operates apart from any established organization. The Uncharted stories are admittedly more nuanced and personal than anything Time Crisis has ever presented, but the set pieces are no less bombastic and spectacular.
It certainly helps that the characters are remarkably fleshed out compared to most games. Nathan Drake of Uncharted is a living, breathing protagonist who reacts to the insurmountable circumstance surrounding him, and he’s surrounded by a vibrant gallery of living, breathing supporting characters who do much the same.
The more human approach of Uncharted is greatly amplified by the third-person gameplay, which offers far more freedom of movement. Here, you’re not only pointing and shooting; you’re also climbing, jumping, and collecting relics. This genre distinction doesn’t automatically make Uncharted the better game, but it does provide a different sort of action movie feel.
Time Crisis is like the G.I. Joe movies—ridiculous yet entertaining—whereas Uncharted is like the Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy—decidedly more serious without completely compromising the fun factor. Both Time Crisis and Uncharted succeed spectacularly at making me feel heroic and daring in their own special ways.
In all honesty, I’m not even that big of a fan of action movies, but Time Crisis and Uncharted exuberate the strengths of the genre. Nostalgia also plays a small role in my affection, as the two series were major parts of my growing up years.
One thing I’m curious to learn is if other people have made the same connections between Time Crisis and Uncharted I’ve made today. Let me know if they make y’all feel like action movie heroes on Twitter or Discord.
That’s all I have for now, folks. See ya ‘round.