Topic: Why is Nathan Drake such a loved protagonist?

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Hey guys,
So I found this video essay the other day stating why Nathan Drake is such a loved character in gaming and I thought it was very good. I’m interested to get you’re opinions on it



@GreenMachineGame I'm not a fan of Drake personally. However when the vid compares him to Snake, Kratos and Geralt I can totally get on board with that point of view. The three mentioned characters are all gruff, super tough, no situation phases them kind of characters. Drake on the other hand is more of a real person with relatively real world issues.

However there are a bunch of even better characters once you look passed that hurdle, game characters who have depth. Aloy, Noctis, Niko Bellic, Clementine, Fetch, Vivi etc

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@themcnoisy yeah that's a great point, particularly when you mentioned clementine. She is such an underrated character in my opinion and TellTale did a great job with her character development with how she evolved over the series



I enjoyed the games not sure I ever loved him like i do other characters I have met in video games. So many loved characters lack any morality in video games.



I'd say from a story and character standpoint, I definitely agree with the video on that Nate has that relatability that most characters, especially in his particular genre lack. Whether it's from his past or his relationship with Elena, there's always something personal about him during his adventures that ties with his character development over the series' course. One of the best things about him is how he reacts to his situations, usually with panic or disbelief that he's caught up in danger, like how most of us probably would. Even his one-liners aren't even trying to be funny: He's trying to take the edge off, and sometimes he sounds nervous saying the jokes. Something I did like about A Thief's End was that away from the treasure hunting, he valued and wanted a relatively simple life.

My main criticism for him is that when it comes to the "everyman" shtick it's not always conveyed well with the gameplay. I'm assuming he's had next to no practice with shooting, although this is also limited by how good the player is. The kicker for me is how many people he fights off at a given moment either by himself or with a buddy or two. Among Thieves, as much as I love it, probably does this the worst since he's fighting actual soldiers with street level fisticuffs and shooting technique. There's even the particular part where he's fighting off some soldiers after the train wreck, while injured and freezing. There's surviving falling buildings, and then there's outfighting numbers among numbers of enemies. On that topic, Nate takes a lot of falls and wounds that would cripple or kill a lesser man. All of this is usually justified in story by his "good luck", but it gets pretty flimsy after a while.

As grounded as he is as a character, when it's time to play, he's still doing videogame things. I don't really consider that a bad thing, that may even be part of the appeal. But I feel that people sometimes focus so much on his realistic character qualities that they forget that the actual games have him doing some crazy, unrealistic things.

I actually find it interesting that the video brings up Solid Snake as a comparison tool. While Snake may not be relatable, he's not that different than Nate in terms of humanity as characters. The character development for Snake in Metal Gear Solid was coming to terms with that human element he has, rather than just being a soldier. Similar with Nate wanting a simpler life than his treasure hunting. The difference is that Nate eventually gets out of his treasure hunting, while Snake keeps doing his soldier work until MGS4, where he can't keep going, although he has different reasons for doing it than before, because of his humanity.

"We don't get to choose how we start in this life. Real 'greatness' is what you do with the hand you're dealt." -Victor Sullivan
"Building the future and keeping the past alive are one and the same thing." -Solid Snake

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Well, to put it briefly, he's down to Earth, relatable, charismatic, an underdog, and just plain fun. What's not to like? Now, he's not a wholly realistic character by any stretch of the imagination, but if he was then he wouldn't be Nathan Drake (and really, what video game character is?). It's really that uncanny luck in the face of certain defeat that makes any action-star what they are, and without at least some degree of unrealism (a huge degree in Drake's case lol) that particular equation of greatness fails; it's a fundamental component of what makes him and any character like him awesome, and that inspires us. But that's just my view. You're welcome to trash him if you wish.

Don't try to copy other people; it just takes away from your own creative power and unique self. Amp your own style and play the way YOU want to. That's what makes gaming a personally rewarding experience — self-expression.


because he isn't some super powered Demi God or militarily trained genetic super soldier or magically enhanced hunter he is just a normal guy hanging by the seat of his pants and dealing with a wild situation that's out of his control to the best of his ability and that makes him more relatable

"I pity you. You just don't get it at all...there's not a thing I don't cherish!"

"Now! This is it! Now is the time to choose! Die and be free of pain or live and fight your sorrow! Now is the time to shape your stories! Your fate is in your hands!


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