Maybe a video game can have too much detail?
The new PS4 Uncharted game Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is plenty likable, with lots of scenic vistas, exciting car chases, and all the other expected Uncharted trimmings. It’s also extremely good-looking, especially if you pay close attention.
Early in the game, protagonist Chloe Frazer and her partner Nadine Ross arrive in the Western Ghats of India to search for a long-lost artifact. It’s a larger, more open area than in past Uncharted games, so much so that the game gives Chloe a map to help her navigate. Like in a lot of other games, if you press the map button, the game will pause and you’ll go to a map screen.
Each time you find a new point of interest or temple, Chloe takes out her map and writes on it. Maybe she’ll cross off an area they’ve already visited, or mark a new location based on new information.
It’s a nice-looking animation on its own, but it’s even more impressive if you use photo mode to pause the game and check out the map she’s holding:
Here’s what the map looks like when I press the “map” button right around the same area and go to the actual map screen:
Red circles added by me. Notice how Chloe has put red marks through a few of the map markers.
Now let’s go back to the in-game map and zoom in:
She’s holding the same map, complete with the marks she’s added and even including the tiny red arrow that indicates her current location. That means that every time Chloe takes out her map, the game is taking the current status of the map in the map screen and superimposing it in minute detail on the map she’s holding in-game.
I have little doubt that someone—probably a small team of someones—spent a lot of time getting that working, just so the game would be a little bit more detailed. Good lord.