Uncharted: 10 Differences Between The Movie And The Game

Released in early 2022, the long-awaited film adaptation of Uncharted did incredibly well. The action/adventure game turned movie stars Tom Holland as the main protagonist, Nathan Drake, and Mark Wahlberg as Victor “Sully” Sullivan.

Although many aspects of the film are strikingly accurate to the source material, there are plenty of moments where creative liberties are taken. As with any adaptation, the story of the Uncharted film strays from the games in multiple ways. Here are ten differences between the Uncharted movie and Uncharted 1-4. Fair warning, you’ll find some minor spoilers for the movie and games.

10 How Nate Met Sully

Nathan and Sully’s relationship is one of the greatest in gaming. The two protagonists are the perfect dynamic duo. Their character chemistry and care for each other are heartwarming in every game.

In the Uncharted movie, Nate, a bartender, meets Sully at a bar in New York City. Sully intentionally seeks Nate out with ulterior motives. However, in Uncharted 3, Nate meets Sully in Colombia at a younger age. Sully and Nate's original meeting happens by chance, but the circumstances of their worlds colliding are similar.

9 Changes In Age

Speaking of younger ages, there are plenty of age differences in the movie. The film introduces Nate as a child, but then later as a young adult, who’s much older than he was upon first meeting the characters in the games.

Sully seems to be around the age he was in Uncharted 3 when meeting Nate, but the age gap between them in the film is much smaller than it would be in the games. And Chloe is younger than she is typically depicted, but it fits the story.

8 Timeline Changes

In true Uncharted fashion, the movie opens with Nate in a precarious situation. Some of the best scenes in the Uncharted film made reference to iconic moments in the games. The movie opens up with Nate in mid-air, dangling from a cargo container. This scene is a clear reference to an incredibly similar moment, save some story differences, in Uncharted 3.

Other scenes like the auction house and the discovery of the pirate ships resemble moments in Uncharted 4, but again, much earlier than Nate actually experiences them.

7 How Nate Got The Ring

Nathan Drake is always seen wearing the ring of Sir Francis Drake around his neck. It’s a significant part of the games and Nate’s origin story, as he adopts Drake as his last name.

Like the games, the movie focuses on the ring, but Nate receives it much earlier than he did in Uncharted 3 when in Colombia. The original Nate steals this ring from a museum, but his movie counterpart is gifted the ring by his brother Sam at a younger age.

6 Sully The Cat Lover

As cute as this furry friend might be, Sully doesn’t have a cat in the games. In fact, he doesn't really interact with animals at all. One of the few animals in the series is Nate's dog, Vicky, so it's possible that Sully befriends her at some point.

Nonetheless, introducing the pet is a good way to soften the movie’s different take on Sully’s personality while also endearing him to the audience. And perhaps the cat will be the vehicle that transforms Sully into the character that fans know and love.

5 Significance Of The Lighter

In the movie, the lighter, given to Nate by his brother, plays almost as large of a role as the ring. The film definitely creates plenty of cool scenes around this lighter, which helps to drive the plot. This object, although running out of oil, is used in a variety of ways.

However, in the games, lighters are occasionally used but aren’t significant to the plot. In fact, Nate has to ask to borrow a lighter from a character in Uncharted 2. And Sam’s lighter is mostly used for lighting cigarettes.

4 Sam’s Story

Nate’s family is seldom mentioned in the first three Uncharted titles, but in Uncharted 4, the orphaned Nate is reunited with his brother Sam, who he hasn’t seen or even mentioned in many years.

The portion of the plot involving Sam in the movie is partially faithful to the game but streamlined to fit the story. In the games, Sully only meets Sam after meeting Nate, as opposed to the film, where Sully meets Nate through Sam. The whereabouts of Sam in the film are technically accurate to Uncharted 4, but the way he gets there is wholly different from the video games.

3 Brothers Departing

In Uncharted 4, the story aims to further bridge the gap between Nate’s childhood and adulthood. While Nate and Sam both live in the orphanage in the movie, Sam has already been kicked out of the orphanage in the game.

Despite Nate sneaking out in both the movie and the game to follow Sam’s plan, the two journeys differ. And Sam doesn’t leave without Nate in the game. In the latter, Nate and Sam stick together for years until they’re separated; In the movie, Sam’s departure was the last time the two saw each other.

2 New York, New York

Traveling all over the world in both the film and the games, there’s one location that has never been mentioned in the games. In the movie, you’re introduced to both Nate and Sully in New York City. However, there is no mention of New York at all in the original material.

This also gives the characters a bit of a New York accent that they don't have in their virtual counterparts. Although the city isn’t central to the story, the setting definitely differs from the ones available in the series.

1 Sully’s Personality

In the movie, Sully is a rude, selfish, and completely money-motivated individual. Sure, he has some character development in the movie, but this newer version of Sully, portrayed by Mark Wahlberg, was virtually unrecognizable from the Sully in Uncharted 1-4.

In the games, money is definitely a motivation for Sully’s treasure hunting because — after all, he is a treasure hunter. However, his care for Nate ultimately outweighs the potential financial gain without question. He’s a fan favorite to many, and his father-son-like relationship with Nate is a significant part of the Uncharted story.

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