Ratchet & Clank was one of the defining games of the PlayStation 2. The original trilogy was critically acclaimed, sold very successfully, and have become true timeless jewels. As the PlayStation 3 arrived, Insomniac did not leave the fans waiting, releasing game after game. Although the first few were mirroring the original trilogy's success, as more and more began to over saturate the PlayStation 3, the series lost its roots and became lackluster. Insomniac took a 3 year hiatus and decided to bring back the true fundamentals of the original title to give its core fan base what they have begged for since the series: Ratchet & Clank Future. Insomniac hoped to bring a resurgence to the franchise and onCe all is said and done, a resurgence is what they brought. Ratchet & Clank is enjoyable, beautiful, and extremely true to the title it was meant to reboot.
Ratchet & Clank stars the duo that the title is named after as they stumble upon each other and use each of their skill sets to help save the galaxy. Ratchet, a Lombrax, has lived as an assistant in a garage his entire life, always wishing he could even meet his role model, Captain Qwark. Clank, a robot created in a Blargian war-robot factory, is by Ratchet's side, having large amounts of intelligence while being very peculiar and gullible. Ratchet & Clank go on an adventure to ensure the galaxy's safety alongside the famous fighters known as the Galactic Rangers. This fantastic duo is comparable to famous video game duos such as Jak and Daxter or Nathan Drake and Victor Sullivan, being some of the most likable leads in video game history.
The game play of Ratchet & Clank is a fantastic overhaul of the original, giving the player a vast assortment of fantastic guns and weapons to use at their disposal. The player controls Ratchet, shooting bad aliens, jumping from ledge to ledge, and using his disproportional wrench to break crates of bolts which allow you to buy more guns, and crystal shards of raritanium, which allow the player to upgrade the guns purchased. The gun upgrading system is very smart and unique, only allowing the player to upgrade their gun as much as they use it, making the player want to use all of the weapons allowed to them to see what upgrades would make which guns and gadgets the best to use depending on the play style. Just as one can level up each individual gun, one can also level up Ratchet, giving much needed extra health that will most definitely come in handy in the second half of the game. Ratchet & Clank also features collectibles such as golden bolts and holocards. Golden bolts are hidden all throughout the game and are predominantly used to unlock extras and cheat codes. Holocards are collected to find sets of 3 that end up raising certain stats dependent upon which set found. One more feature in Ratchet & Clank is the addition of a challenge mode, which gives the player all of the guns and gadgets with all of their levels restarting the game, making it much more difficult, while also giving the player the chance to raise the cap of the upgrades on each gun. All of these things make Ratchet and Clank's game play not only deep, but addictive.
One big part of Ratchet & Clank is the environments as well as the supporting cast, which all add to the charm of Ratchet & Clank that makes this reboot genuinely feel like the original. All of the great wacky characters that players know and love are all back in the new installment looking better than ever. These fantastic and weird characters are complemented with one of the most gorgeous games visually with some of the most fascinatingly fun to look at landscapes that Ratchet gets to explore. Each planet feels different from the rest making the player never feel like they are doing the same thing more than once.
A part of Ratchet & Clank that stuck out to me was a possible too large amount of correlation between the game and the upcoming movie. Many cut scenes are very obviously straight from the movie and this makes the player at some points feel as though they are missing something in the plot or feel like maybe a character is under explained because a certain cut scene was not included. All of this, however, happens very few and far between but it is still pretty apparent.
Ratchet & Clank is still Ratchet & Clank, and that is one of the biggest compliments it can get. Insomniac struck gold with their try at a resurgence of this franchise and Ratchet & Clank for the PlayStation 4 will remain one of the best looking, most fun, and deep 3rd person action platformer to be released for many years to come.