I actually hadn't played Uncharted 1 at the time, though I had seen footage/screens of it online. I'd dabbled in a little Xbox 360 IRL, and been blown away by Gears of War 1 and later very impressed by the likes of Bioshock and Gears 2. Uncharted 2 though, once I saw it firsthand on a friend's PS3, was on a whole 'nother level. The sheer density of detail, the lifelike animations, the scope and complexity of the big action setpieces, it was just astounding.
Nothing since has quite recaptured that feeling, though as I say Metro Exodus PC maxed out and raytraced comes close.
It's not that there haven't been games besides those two in the last decade that impressed me graphically, just nothing else that has really made my jaw hit the floor.
That makes me more curious how I would have reacted to it if I hadn't played Uncharted 1 first. Or perhaps if I had played it earlier.
According to my Trophies, I played Final Fantasy XIII and Gran Turismo 5 before Uncharted 2. A friend of mine recommended the series, and lent me the first two games. So I went through Uncharted 1, and then immediately after I played 2. And because of that I can almost only remember thinking of how it compared to the first one. Although there were some moments in 2 that had no equivalent in Uncharted 1 that just impressed me on their own, such as when you use a sniper rifle to shoot down some big towers in the distance that collapse.