"Guns Fire In A Completely Different Way"
Uncharted 3 is an incredible achievement, and Matt rightfully ladled hot dollops of critical praise all over it in yesterday's full review. However, weapon handling has always been an niggling issue with the series - and we weren't the only ones to point it out. The Naughty Dog forums are overflowing with complaints about the inaccurate aiming, so community manager Arne Meyer has spoken out to defend the mechanics and explain what's changed in painstaking detail.
Apparently, the new feel of the ranged combat is down to a number of purposely-implemented factors, which include the faster pace of the enemies as well as higher sensitivity. More after the break.
In an impressively thorough post on the Naughty Dog website, Meyer lists the new features and the reasons behind their implentation. In raw mechanical terms, bullets now aim and travel in a completely different way to the prequels.
First off, the guns fire in a completely different way in Uncharted 2 compared to what you're experiencing now in Uncharted 3. Keep that in mind, as it affects your perception of gun combat as a whole since it's very easy to want to compare the two sets of mechanics between the two games. In Uncharted 2 the bullets would leave the barrel at a pre-set deviation when you were aimed in. What this means is that the bullets would not fire straight out of the barrel all the time -- they could come out at an angle. Therefore, you could have a target clearly in the reticle and still miss it by a wide margin. This was frustrating, because it was difficult to tell why you were missing a target.
As a result, we wanted to be sure you had a better grasp of whether you were hitting or missing a target. In Uncharted 3 the bullets now fire straight out of the barrel 100% of the time. However, we have recoil -- where the reticle moves/bounces as you fire. Therefore, it is easier to tell if you are missing or hitting a target. Now it is much more obvious when you are hitting or missing based on the reticle itself.
Aiming is identical to Uncharted 2 - we took a look at the values side by side. We did adjust the sensitivity to be MUCH higher in Uncharted 3 to give you a more precise feel. With Uncharted 3, you can deviate from the straight path from each of the 8 directions much easier and more precisely.
Movement speed and pacing is also a key factor. AI enemies now seek cover and move across the battlefields much faster than before, which changes the way that the ranged combat feels. On top of that, multiplayer sprint speed has also been increased.
The AK has been purposefully made less accurate to avoid players using it unrealistically at extreme range, while the recoil has been reduced to make up for it.
I'd highly recommend reading the post in its entirety if you're interested in the weapon handling or want a closer look at the behind-the-scenes decisions that went into making Uncharted 3.