The new PS 4 exclusive Ratchet & Clank is sort of reboot/re-imagining of the classic Playstation Ratchet & Clank games. This 2016 take on the series starts back at the series beginnings, but still includes the hallmark guns that this series has been known for since its first appearance on the PS2 over a decade ago. The story in this case ties into the movie set to be released on April 29 and closely mirrors that first outing in 2002. Although in this version of the original game, Dr. Nefarious is introduced and plays a major role. The game sticks to its platformer roots fairly closely.
Let’s start with the good. Graphics are decidedly improved. Even though I’m not a fan of solely judging a game based on its graphical prowess and polish. In this case, the PS4’s power is put to good use, but I did occasionally get some shuddering when a large number of enemies met my good bouncer. The environments are without a doubt gorgeous. One plus is that many aren’t jumping onto is that this game is cheaper than most games from the larger studios. Starting at 39.99, with not costly DLC in sight, this game is a more respectable use of your gaming money.
Other pluses to this new installment in the series include sticking to the old formula with slight updates. This game feels like a Ratchet & Clank game should and scratches all the platforming itches in the best possible way. There are some notable improvements to game play, including the ability to strafe.
My biggest complaint is the relative brevity of the game. Considering this game cost only 39.99, maybe a campaign of longer than 10 hours shouldn’t be expected. That aside a true fan may not feel like they have had their fill of our lombax and his mechanical side kick by the end of their first play through.
The upgrade systems for the weapons and Ratchet in general has changed mostly for the better, but a small grip is the card collecting mechanic. Collecting what the game calls holocards nets the play boost to certain stats and omega weapon unlocks. This mechanic works as cards are scattered throughout the levels and are also acquired through random drops. The issue I have is that there’s not mechanic for dealing with cards once you have them all because you keep collecting them once your sets are completed. This seems like an oversight and missed opportunity for some sort of reward for players attempting to 100 percent the game. Maybe the ability to trade in for bolts, which would help with unlocking omega weapons would have been nice?
Also the game doesn’t seem particularly difficult, even on challenge mode on the hardest setting. Challenge mode, incidentally, is unlocked after completing the game. Maybe I’m just that good at these games, but I can say that I’ve been challenged all that much during my first play through and even most of the way through challenge mood. Maybe this isn’t the purpose of the game. Maybe it should just be a game for a good time, which Ratchet & Clank excels at even when it’s not that difficult.
I think this is definitely one you’ll want to play it now. I have minor issues with the length, but if you are a platformer fan, this should find a way onto your gaming queue. It’s great fun even when it isn’t too difficult.