With the addition of multiplayer to an already great campaign, does Uncharted 2 acheive status as "better then the 1st?"

User Rating: 9.5 | Uncharted 2: Among Thieves PS3
I just finished playing Uncharted 2 and it is freaking amazing. Honestly, buy this game. Let's get this review started.

Presentation: 9.5/10
Uncharted 2 looks even better then the first Uncharted last year. The characters look great and the enviorments are extremely detailed. Soaking in the lush, vibrant forest or the explosions, fire, debris and destruction of the streets or even the detailed designs on statues and walls within tombs. Everything looks beautiful and taking in your surroundings while exploring the game is wonderful. I honestly cannot stop talking about the detail. Shadows and sunlight creep through chinks in trees or between buildings, bodies of water glimmer and vibrate leaves on plants and trees blow in the breeze. This makes the game even more enjoyable to behold and improves the experience. Once again this game matches the first game's ability to create an experience which is a perfect balance between movies and game. The enviorment during cutscenes is just as detailed as regular gameplay and the voice acting is great. The story is also amazing. There are many plot twists, and the characters really grow on you and you become attached to them. The plot also has a very interesting premise and getting to the bottom of it is a lot fun.

Gameplay: 9.5/10
The gameplay in this game is exactly like the first game, which is perfect, the first game was awesome. You will spend a lot of time solving puzzles. This may involve placing blocks in specific parts of the walls and using hints in Drake's journal to find out which blocks work on which walls. It may also including turning a knob to activate a set of stars then climbing on a statue and turning the knobs on the statue to activate an exit. These puzzles are fun to solve and not too hard, but they make you feel like a freaking genius when you figure them out, and they require lots of your brain and thought which is always good. You will spend a lot of time fighting. The combat system is improved in this game. Last time you would have to perform brutal combos to kill enemies. Now you just mash square until he swings then you duck and counter with another tap on square. This is much easier which helps the combat move faster. Most of the fighting however is gun fights. The shooting is returned from the first game and with a goal line of weapons and tight controls killing all the enemies thrown at you is fun and simple. Finally, the last thing you will be doing is platforming and exploring. This has such ease and goes so fast (like the first game) that you don't really have to worry about falling or getting frustrated. Howver the level design is brilliant. There will be a ledge hidden above you. You will jump to that then have to shimmy around the back of a building, for example, then hop to a ladder and bull yourself up. Or in a cave you might have to climb a statue then jump from the statues head onto a platform the run onto a ladder and climb. Everything is set up so perfectly you just hop and jump through level after level having a blast. This makes exploring even better and when you combine that and the presentation, exploring and moving through these vast levels is a thing of beauty.

Length/Content/Replay Value: 9.5/10
This is the biggest improvement over the first game. This part was good in the first game because of the 60 treasures, the medals, and the PSN trophies, as well as a decently lengthy single player campaign 8 hours on normal. But this one just owns that game in this section. You know the 60 treasures in the first game? They're back but now there's 100 of them and they are even better hidden. The strange relic, the super hard treasures, is also back. Finding these treasures are awesome and add hours to your play time forcing you to solve extra puzzles and explore the detailed enviorments more. Not only are there more treasures but the length of the campaign has been further increased. On Normal, Uncharted 1 took me about 6-8 hours. On Normal for me Uncharted 2 took me about 9-11 hours. 2-3 extra hours may not seem like much but when you're as addicted to the game as I was, they mean a lot. In fact, the 6-8 hours was what bothered me in the first game. I was super addicted and then it ended and I wanted to keep playing. But in Uncharted 2 there are more missions and longer missions keeping the sharks grinning. So you may be like: "OK. Slightly longer campaign and more treasures. So what? Does that really warrant such a higher score?" And the answer is, I'm not done. The biggest addition is multiplayer. I wasn't sure how they would pull off multiplayer but they did and it is absoloutely fantastic. Simply, it is exactly like the shooting in the campaign except it is against humans, you focus on Kill-Death-Ratio, and you gain cash and XP and levels. This multiplayer experience is addictive and I've already doubled my play time (JamaicanPatty11 add me) by playing multiplayer. Killing players gets you cash and XP which helps you level up and buy weapons and upgrades. Leveling up and improving my classes was extremely fun and the maps are top-notch. This will add so much time to your play time and knowing that there is still more content to enjoy after the single player credits roll is satisfying. And I'm not even done yet. Not only are the competitive online matches there are also private and split screen matches so you can enjoy the experience with a couple friends. And there is also co-op online, which is kind of like COD Spec Ops, where you complete missions with your friends to also level up and earn cash/XP.

Overall: 9.5/10
At the end of the day, Uncharted 2 improved heavily on the first Uncharted. With Co-Op online, Competitive Online, and new Treasures there is more content, length, and replay value then the first game. And with the even further improved graphics, sitting on your couch and watching it like a movie or just exploring and taking in your surroundings was never this good in Uncharted 1. And even though some people might complain that the basic gameplay is the same (explore, platform, search for treasures, solve puzzles, shoot people, punch peoples) this is good because they didn't need to change anything, the gameplay from the first game was already perfect.
So what I'm trying to say (in a really complicated way) is that I love this game and they added new things that are great and kept the old things that were great.