Ratchet and Clank: Tools of Destruction (PS3)
Posted by Guest Writer on Fri, 21 Mar 2008.
You are Ratchet the orphaned Lombax with your cyborg companion Clank. You travel the galaxies fighting against robot pirates, Cragmites and hordes of vicious native beasts. Tools of Destruction in my opinion is a very successful sequel to the previous Ratchet and Clank games, which I can raise my hand proudly and admit to owning them all at one point. I love the Ratchet and Clank games, the first one got me hooked. The later releases were a little shaky and didn’t quite live up to the Original, but each one brought new features to the series such as new armours and upgradeable weapons. Ratchet and Clank Tools of Destruction easily lives up to the first releases reputation, with its clever humour, array of shiny weapons and gadgets and loveable characters and storylines.
You begin in Metropolis a vibrant and colourful city, kind of like a futuristic New York. You have hover cars flying above and below, monorails in the background, an army of Cragmites in robotic armour attacking you and this is all suspended in mid air, on platforms built between these massive skyscrapers. You first realise this attack when Captain Quark, the intergalactic super zero, calls you up and asks for aid - “if you’re not busy, I can handle” as he hides behind his big desk. Emperor Percival Tachyon (pronounced Tack-ee-on) commands this army and all flying ships, lasers and explosive devices are pointing at you. Ratchet is the last Lombax in the known galaxy, and the Cragmite Tachyon knows that the Lombax are the only species that can wield the device that destroyed all the Cragmites years ago.
As you battle through metropolis armed with your Grenade Glove and Repeater Blaster and of course your trusty wrench, you take on swarms of enemies, grind down grind rails, free fall through rush hour (using SIXAXIS) and avoid speeding trains. You get a sense of the hectic environment you’re in, and it’s really fun jumping out of the way of a train at the last minute while shooting at some flying hovercraft speeding towards you with rockets at the ready. Once you finish free falling, you meet the Mighty Ruler, Emperor Percival Tachyon which draws sniggers from Ratchet and Clank, wondering if they should fear a “Percival.” With some slight sarcasm they run under the Emperor’s giant robot suit and onto his ship and fly off to some far off swampland.
I have to admit to getting over excited when graphics are superb and stupidly precise on every detail, Ratchet and Clank is one of those games where I stood there and watched as everything flew by. There wasn’t a real loop in the background visuals, they were all randomly generated, and the water/slime all had properties of water/slime, for example if you fall into a marsh you can jump out easily as long as you don’t sink, but you can drown in water if you’re not careful. When you do make it out of the ‘swim-able’ waters, the water drips off Ratchet’s fur, and you remain wet for a fair while, leaving little wet paw prints on the ground. It’s just little features like this that make most games for me. The normal visuals were superb, the colours were bright and vibrant, each weapon had its own theme and style and they all looked fierce and powerful. The different ammos are especially colourful, and you could make a rainbow out of all the lasers and slimes and explosions you have at your disposal. Not too mention the Groovitron, and Disco Grenade that caused all to dance uncontrollably like John Travolta, even bosses, which you generally don’t get with an area effect device in most games.
There are also space missions, when you get to fly around in your space ship and take on the robot pirates in a little space shooty thing. It’s not amazing but it’s fun and just breaks up the game slightly with little space battles that reminded me of the Gunstar Heroes Green boss battles.. just not quite as fun as them though.
The game play is easy for all to grasp, you can dodge quite easily, and strafe jump left and right as well as strafe with simple controls, quite easy for anyone to pick up and play with or without knowledge of any games. The quick select menu now has three windows to accommodate your mass of gadgetry and arsenal. This feature has been in from day one of the series, and is very handy for selecting a different weapon with ease - it’s similar to the system used In Resistance: Fall of man if anyone is familiar with that, and similar to the one in the Metal Gear Solid series. The SIXAXIS bit is obviously unneeded, but not unwanted in my opinion, as you use it for lock picking free falling and dancing. You could easily do this via the analogue stick, but this way just adds a little something extra to the game, as opposed to Medal of Honour’s stupid rowing control.
It has massive playability, as once you’ve completed the game the once, there is another mode which is nice and difficult. Basically it’s exactly the same, but you get to keep your weapons you’ve obtained before, the enemies are many times harder, and the first boss on Hard mode has twice as much health as the final boss on normal. However don’t despair at this seemingly impossible task, the game gives you new upgrades for your weapons up to level 10 (it was 5 before), the chance to buy a Golden Disco ball that replenishes itself and the Raritanium armour. The amount of Bolts and Raritanium you will need for this is staggering, BUT if you score more kills without getting hit you start to rack up a bonus meter which can raise your income by up to 10 times what it should normally be, which obviously helps when purchasing the new epic weaponry.
I would rate this game quite highly, and unfortunately it is one of the best games on the PS3 at the moment, I say unfortunately because there really should be more and not because the game is bad. I would give it at least a 9 if not a 10 - the graphics are great, the gameplay is smooth and flawless, the array of gadgets and weaponry are amazing and the plot, characters and humour are some of the best you can get on a game, with quotes such as “ARGH!!! You got me wee cannonballs” and “This broadcast was brought to you by the letter Arrrrrrr!”. Sorry, I couldn’t resist - I do love the robot pirate levels.
So if you happen to have a PS3 and need a new game that you want to enjoy, remain relatively stress free and just to be a good laugh, you should try out Ratchet and Clank, and maybe you can help save the galaxy from the Cragmite Terror.
- Review by Scrunchie