June 24, 2009

Ratchet Clank Future: Tools of Destruction and Quest for Booty Reviews

I remember getting the first Ratchet Clank game a long time ago for my birthday. The game introduced me into a world where this talking cat, Ratchet, and his robot friend, Clank, went around traveling the universe and blowing/bashing stuff up. I loved the first game. Then came the second...well, same thing. Second was fun. Then the third...same thing again....okay this is starting to suck. This pattern went on until I gave up on the series and decided that, since the game was the same over and over again on different planets, that I would stop playing the series forever. Well, I have a friend who has owned a PS3 since it first came out, and he guaranteed me that this game was different. In his opinion, he said Ratchet Clank Future: Tools of Destruction was the best game on the PS3 (granted, this is pre-MGS4). Well, he's wrong. It isn't the best game, it's the second best. It is also the most fun game on the PS3.

The formula is similar to previous games, but Insomniac basically revolutionized the series by adding several puzzles and varying from the norm of travel to planet, break everything, and move on. From the beginning, the game shows off it's stunning graphics and ability to test the player multiple ways at once. Immediately, you face hordes of enemies that each die in fun ways (ie explosions), and are equipped with weapons that basically give you over 9000 ways to enjoy the destruction. After a few enemies, you jump on grind rails, have to dodge obstacles, and experience the motion sensor power of the Dualshock 3 (flying, HALO jump missions, and some puzzles take advantage of this wireless feature). Unlike previous games, each planet has its own set of secrets, missions, and weapons. There are also variations from the past in that now Ratchet has to manuever through warhouses and battle on pirate ships rather than the same scenes. Also, upgrading weapons is great because not only do they upgrade by using them, but they also can be upgraded by raritarium (I highly recommend buying the raritarium upgrade, which is a purple crystal used to upgrade weapons, because the raritarium upgrade makes enemies drop these crystals).

One improvement that is God-sent is that before, when you died, all the progress you made (ie bolts and raritanium collected) was lost. Now, you keep it. So you could basically go on suicide missions to max out your weapons and get tons of money, and the only penalty is your time was wasted. I love that. Other improvements are new gadgets like the Groovitron, which is a disco ball that makes your oponents dance, and the Pirate Disguise, which turns you into a jig-dancing pirate. Sounds childish, but presents new ways to enjoy the game.

I can't really say anything bad about this game, so I'll say some more good stuff. You unlock cool alternate skins for Ratchet by finding Gold Bolts, cheat codes by accomplishing secret missions in each level, and the characters are hilarious. My favorite is Rusty Pete, a pirate robot who is always drunk, and Captain Slag. Whenever you face off against them, the Pirates of the Caribbean theme song plays (which is an epic song, even in this slightly altered version). Even better, the battles with the Space Pirates include Star Fox like missions in which Ratchet takes to the skies, blasting away pirate space ships, dodging laser canons, and just like Star Fox, fighting a mega-robot space boss. Thank God Slippy wasn't here.

I know this review seems like it's saying nothing, but in truth that's because Ratchet Clank Future is very very fun, and there is no other way to describe it. The story line made me laugh almost the entire way, and the plot is actually good for a change. There is also a gladiator arena which always puts a smile on my face. I would give this game a 10, however, past the fun the game lacks that extra gusto to put it at a ten. That being said, the playback value is incredibly high, because once you beat the you get new weapons, new armor for Ratchet, and a new difficulty. In addition, the game has one of THE BEST game soundtracks I have ever heard. The music is phenomenal.

If I were ages 4-14, I would give this game a 10. However, here's the review:

Rating: 9.5 (the game is the funnest on the PS3, and has a great soundtrack, hilarious story, and constantly provides a new challenge. Also, it is highly addicting. I've been playing for two weeks).

Second Opinion: 9 (Some of us "more mature" gamers may not appreciate the kiddy cartoon theme, but will still enjoy the combat and boss battles).
After beating Tools of Destruction twice, I immedietly downloaded Quest for Booty on Playstation Network. Quest for Booty is an expansion to the game, and I went in with high expectations. What a let down. Basically, Insomniac succeeded again in varying the challenges, but failed in the overall game. Some genius decided to have Ratchet stripped of all his weapons and thrown on an island with purple Kangaroo-Zora type aliens. Then, they decide to make Ratchet fight only with his wrench until the last level, which sucks ass. Also, about half the game revolves around Ratchet using his wrench to pull platforms around so you can cross gaps. Lame. The game is very short as aspected (it is a $10 download after all), but now for what makes it crappy besides being stripped of what made Tools of Destruction fun (ie Tools of Destruction).

So, I played it on Hard thinking it would be a joke. Problem is you start with 10 HP, and die in 1 hit. This is even worse since you only have your wrench. Almost the entire game takes place on 1 island, fighting hordes of pirate robots (a lot, but not too many). It is very repetitive. The puzzles also aren't challening since its running on metalic surfaces while dodging traps and then using your wrench to move a platform. There are some good things though.
For one, altough the game is short, the story line is just as good if not better than Tools of Destruction. It also displays more of Rusty Pete, one of the funniest video game characters I have come across, as well as the history of the Space Pirates. The final boss is amazing too, albeit slightly annoying because you get your weapons back just for him and none of them are upgraded (so they do little damage).

In the end, the expansion is just okay. Maybe if you kept your weapons, it would have been a lot more fun. I still don't know why Insomniac took them away but whatever. For the price, though, it provides a few hours of entertainment and makes you want to go back and play Tools of Destruction even more.

Final Review: 7 (the reason being that when the game is taken for what it is, a mini-expansion, it's not bad.)

1 comment:

  1. I hear the second expansion, A Crack in Time, is much better.