Platform Reviewed: PS4 Platforms Available: PS4 Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment Developer: Insomniac Games Release Date: April 12, 2016 MSRP: $39.99 (Php. 1,895.00)
When I first saw the preview of Ratchet & Clank, all I had in mind was that the game would really be a success and beautiful. There hasn’t been a lot of revivals, remakes, or reboots on the PlayStation classics since then. Ratchet & Clank, developed by Insomniac Games, was originally released on the PlayStation 2 entertainment system in 2002. There were remastered editions that were released on the Playstation 3, but this time on the next-generation console, PS4, Ratchet & Clank is back with much more improved gameplay, better controls, great dialogue, and astonishing graphics.
We return to the world of Ratchet & Clank in the PlayStation 4 system along with its upcoming CGI-movie based on the game this April 29. Get your booty-lombax butt in and assist the Galaxy Rangers in this fun and spectacular action-adventure platformer remake.
Ratchet & Clank starts off in the planet Veldin where the hopeful Lombax, Ratchet, auditioned to become part of the known hero organization led by the too-full-of-himself hero, Captain Qwark. The basic tutorial starts in Veldin and followed by the introduction of the cute companion and tin-can partner, Clank, escaping the factory of Drek in the planet of Quartu. The dynamic duo embarked on a journey to send a warning to the Galaxy Rangers to let them prepare for the imminent attack of Drek’s army of deadly-robots. What’s great about the first two levels is that it shows you more of what Ratchet and Clank did before they met in Veldin unlike the previous classic version of Ratchet & Clank. The game conveniently tells you the basic mechanics of the game and gives you bit and bits of guide for the new weapons you acquire.
Gameplay-wise, the Ratchet & Clank retained its previous version which is quite as nice as it didn’t lose the touch of the series. You still have to use your Omniwrench 8000, gather bolts for your credits from destroying crates and destructible items, and upgrade your weaponry. It’s your good ol’ smack-and-shoot platformer that Ratchet & Clank veterans love. And as a newcomer to the series, it’s quite fantastic that the game reintroduces the whole franchise to the new generation. I’ve watched a dozen of gameplay videos of Ratchet & Clank in the past since I’m a follower of the series but didn’t really have a chance to play any of it due my lack of “funds” –as I was still a kid back then — and all I can say is that the remake version of Ratchet & Clank stayed loyal to its series. One good thing to note as well is that the controls of the game are pretty smooth, the sensitivity is fair and very precise. It makes Ratchet and Clank easy to control and maneuver.
The level design is pretty simple and you can go back to planets if you need to finish optional missions if you want to. There are also gold bolts where you can use to buy extra perks in the game like outfits and cheats.
The weapons are similar to the 2002 version of Ratchet & Clank. What I like most on the list of weapons are the Groovitron and the deadly floating companion, Mr. Zurkon. The Groovitron, as from the word groove-ey, hilariously forces your enemies to dance and making them vulnerable to attacks. While Mr. Zurkon is your companion who floats and helps you take out the bad guys while commenting a lot with humorous and sarcastic comebacks. In the list of weaponry, you still have the Fusion Grenade (previously known as the Bomb Glove), the highly-trusted plasma Combuster gun, the flamethrower Pyrocriter, and more. But these, however, which for veterans of the series, makes Ratchet & Clank a bit repetitive and could have added more to the weapons and upgradability for a “reboot” or “remake”.
Graphically, this remake version is incredible. One of the best I’ve seen in any PS4 games so far. Ratchet & Clank aesthetically improved in a way that it can be crowned as the best-looking game of 2016 on the PlayStation 4 system. With its eye-candy visuals plus the smooth motion blur gives us a cinematic feel of the game, adding the smooth explosions with smokes, lighting glare effects, detailed character models, water visuals, and the whole environment makes the whole the game more catchy — yes, it’s almost comparable to its CGI-movie. Additionally, the game showcased a new awesome costume in Ratchet & Clank that wasn’t in the previous version — the Galaxy Ranger blue armor-suit for Ratchet. And all I can say that it looks badass. Visually, Ratchet & Clank is one of the game changers for the PS4 this year as a second-party game.
The voice-acting of this version of Ratchet & Clank is really impressive. Yes, Mikey Kelley, the original voice behind Ratchet was decent, but James Taylor replacing Kelley was not a bad choice at all. He gave life to what the developers wanted to have for Ratchet. That youngster-teen voice-over with a bit husky-young-adult voice was a suitable voice for that Lombax we all know and love. The studio still re-casted good old voices of Clank, played by David Kaye, and Jim Ward behind Captain Qwark — who, by the way, is also the narrator of the game.
The game is pretty much almost 9 to 11 hours of gameplay, 7-8 hours tops if you’re in a very fast pace of accomplishing the game. There are challenges in the game where you can unlock certain perks/unlockables which makes the game worth playing again. Even without these little adventures, the game is still enjoyable to play with.
The Ratchet & Clank reboot is one of the best exclusive games I’ve bought so far. It was worth it for only $39.99 (Php. 1,895.00), it’s pretty affordable for a remake on the PS4, unlike other exclusives which usually goes to a full price of $59.99 (Php. 2,595.00). It offers a better reintroduction to the series for all newcomers. Aside from being almost similar to the old version, the fantastic improvement on its aesthetics, decent level design, great voice actors behind the game, smoother controls, and the cinematic feel makes this game worth adding to your PlayStation 4 library without a doubt.
This review is based on a retail copy purchased by the author.
Editor’s Note: Republished as the game is part of the December 2017 PlayStation Plus free games in Asia. Originally posted on April 17, 2016, 7:24PM Philippine Time.