The Most Challenging Missions From The Video Game Franchise, Ranked

The Most Challenging Missions From The Video Game Franchise, Ranked

The Uncharted series got a resurgence in interest thanks to the movie starring Tom Holland, which has gone on to become a huge success. It’s gotten players back into the game series where Nathan Drake has to contend with enemy swarms on a regular basis. While there are over a hundred missions altogether, some stand out as particularly difficult.

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Although mystery is a part of the fun of gameplay, it’s worth remembering which missions players need to be prepared for and will feel the challenge truly come together. Whether it’s guiding Nate across a difficult river stream or on a sinking ship, Uncharted has missions that will test anyone’s skills.


Chapter 25: Broken Paradise (Uncharted 2: Among Thieves)

Protagonists look at the tree of life in Uncharted 2 Among Thieves

Tom Holland’s Uncharted is considered one of the best recent adventure movies, and a lot of the material was derived from levels like “Broken Paradise.” Here, players have to go through a small army of guardians in Shambhala who eat up massive amounts of damage until they can be killed.

The mission doesn’t hold back on human enemies either, as Nate, Elena, and Chloe frequently come across Lazarevic’s forces. The dynamic environment that breaks apart at frequent intervals also means that players don’t have much time to gather their bearings.

Chapter 14: Tunnel Vision (Uncharted 2: Among Thieves)

Nathan Drake aiming a gun in Uncharted 2 Among Thieves

Continuing along with Nate’s mission to save Chloe, “Tunnel Vision” has him face off against Lazarevic’s army of mercenaries by himself on a moving train. The difficulty in this level comes from the challenge of aiming since the train makes being precise extremely hard against mooks that are shooting in return.

The presence of a chopper out to get Nate doesn’t make things easier, with players having to use a turret to bring it down – it’s easier said than done because of the fast-moving chopper’s evasion of Nate’s attacks. The final boss fight can be tricky for those who don’t crack the strategy needed to beat Lazarevic’s lieutenant.

Chapter 20: Race To The Rescue (Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune)

Drake takes cover from lasers in Uncharted

The Uncharted movie is a video game adaptation that didn’t fully follow the source material since Tom Holland’s Nate never fought droves of enemies. In the first game, players have to do just that in “Race to the Rescue,” with the level divided into areas where Nate is ambushed by Eddie Raja’s goons.

In particular, it’s the shootout in the church that players can find brutal because of the many enemies that arrive. Moreover, there are different types of bad guys to take down, with most carrying laser scopes that force players to stay in cover and try to dispatch them from a distance.

Chapter 15: Sink Or Swim (Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception)

Drake crashes through a glass in Uncharted 3 Drake's Deception

This one is designed to create a sense of panic within players, as the environment progressively gets destroyed. With Nate having to run for his life as the ship gradually fills with water, the mission is basically about escaping as fast as players can, which is difficult to do when things break apart so easily.

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Adding to the challenge are the many mooks that attempt to slay Nate – it doesn’t make sense why they try to do so when the ship’s about to sink but players have to fight them nonetheless. Perhaps the most frustrating aspect about the mission is that it turns out Sully was never there, meaning it was all for naught.

Chapter 20: No Escape (Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End)

Uncharted 4 features the biggest environments in the series yet and each mission lasts a long time. “No Escape” stays true to its name, as the main objective here is to survive. With the climax almost having arrived, players have to escape while Rafe’s forces are hanging around in every corner.

The mooks here are very trigger-happy, to the point where they all look to unload all their ammo if they spot Nate. Level design is such that stealthy ways to take the baddies down can be attempted, but it’s all so confusingly constructed that players are more likely to lose their way while contending with heavy gunfire.

Chapter 5: The Fortress (Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune)

Nate hangs on a rope in Uncharted Drake's Fortune

It’s hard to believe that Uncharted is a game that turned 15 in 2022, although the first installment is still arguably the most difficult. “The Fortress” also features platforming sequences that can be a challenge, as Nate has to maneuver around the crumbling fortress with a high likelihood of players missing their mark and having to start over.

Of course, the real problem arrives when Nate breaches the fortress, which is when Eddie Raja’s goons turn out altogether to try and kill him. Uncharted’s baddies are blessed with precision aiming, meaning that players have to spend a lot of time in cover during this mission if they want to survive into the next one.

Chapter 21: Atlantis Of The Sands (Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception)

Nate enters the Atlantis Of The Sands in Uncharted 3 Drake's Deception

Many feel that Uncharted is like the game version of a blockbuster movie, with all the high-octane action and magnificent set pieces. This mission is along the same lines, but that sense of wonder dies out pretty soon when Nate has to contend with enemies with djinn powers.

It can be a real hassle to fight these enemies since they have extreme levels of durability and take on fire-based attacks. The game doesn’t have mercy on players either when quite a few environments turn up and taking cover isn’t possible – Nate has to basically run around to evade attacks that massively deplete the health.

Chapter 12: Abducted (Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception)

Nate is captured by pirates in Uncharted 3 Drake's Deception

Nate was apprehended in his bid to rescue Sully, which got him trapped among pirates. “Abducted” can be a chore to play because of the multitude of enemies that turn. The area of the ship graveyard is the biggest challenge in Uncharted 3, with mooks carrying destructive weapons in large numbers.

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The environment isn’t user-friendly either, as Nate has to be controlled through tight spaces during platforming sequences, while open areas are a disadvantage during combat because enemies can shoot from all directions. It’s a mission that can be very unforgiving on the Crushing difficulty.

Chapter 12: Heading Upriver (Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune)

Nate and Elena on a jetski in Uncharted Drake's Fortune

Uncharted wasn’t fine-tuned in its first title, and missions like this one can feel rather clunky in execution. Here, Nate and Elena have to head upriver, where enemies attempt to shoot them down from elevated platforms. Not helping matters are the barrels of explosives that go off with the slightest touch.

The mission is reminiscent of Naughty Dog’s Crash Bandicoot series with the way players have to constantly swerve around dangerous items. Even moments without conflict can be tough, as moving up heavy currents of water can be a task of its own that requires quite a bit of trial and error.

Chapter 11: Trapped (Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune)

Nate takes cover from an enemy in Uncharted Drake's Fortune

There’s no mission in the entire series where Nate is pinned down as badly as he is in “Trapped.” While there are platforming sequences to be found, players will largely remember it for the way Nate is cornered behind poorly-built boxes or broken-down statues while enemies arrive in droves.

Crushing difficulty can leave many players stuck in this mission since enemy gunfire is completely relentless and Nate’s health depletes rapidly. There’s not much room for strategy either, as focusing on enemies on one side allows the rest to sneak up on Nate from the other end.

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Saim Cheeda
(1376 Articles Published)

Saim Cheeda is an entertainment writer covering all of Film, TV, Gaming and Books. He’s been a writer for Valnet since 2017, contributing 500+ articles for The Gamer, The Things, Game Rant, Comic Book Resources and Screen Rant. Apart from freelance writing, Saim is a lifestyle blogger, co-owning the blog 3 States Apart.

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