Ratchet and Clank finally find their way to the PlayStation 4 with a brand new game that’s based on a film that’s… based on a game. It’s a little weird, I know, but how this game is tied into a movie is kind of irrelevant. If you love the Ratchet & Clank series or PlayStation 2-era platformers then you’re going to find a lot to love about this title.
Ratchet & Clank is a remake and retelling of the original PS2 game. The classic duo meet for the first time and they must work together to stop the evil Chairman Drek from destroying planets for profit. Though the core story is from the first game, it adds many elements from other games in the series, most notably, Dr. Nefarious who made his debut in Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal. Just like the first game, this one manages to tell a simple yet highly enjoyable space faring tale.
Besides the excellently written dialogue and characters, what makes the Ratchet & Clank series work so well is how it blends traditional platforming and puzzles with intense shooting. Of course, you’re not just using regular weapons. This game has weapons from the original game, the sequels, and even some new instruments of death. An arsenal filled with guns that turn enemies to sheep, makes them dance, pixelizes them, and more, never gets boring and you’ll be motivated to keep using each weapon in order to upgrade them and see what new insane and devastating effects they have.
Graphically speaking this is one of the most gorgeous looking games of the current generation. It looks as if you’re playing a Pixar movie. But it’s not just obvious things like gleaming metropolises, lava filled planets, and cold robot factories that make this game so pretty to look at. There are a ton of subtle touches like weather effects, lighting from bioluminescent flora and fauna, and pieces of debris from destroyed robots or crates that really make the overall package extremely pleasing to the eye.
Just like other games in the series, there is a lot to do here. Each planet contains many hidden secrets, some that can’t be found unless you have the right equipment. Best of all, playing on New Game+ gives you access to better gun enhancements and equipment. There are even collectible cards that can be traded in to unlock additional bonuses. Let’s not forget those awesome hoverboard races that remain just as addictive as ever. However, I do miss the arena matches of old games and wish they had been included.
Ratchet & Clank is a staple of PlayStation and I’m glad that the series has come to PS4 in such style. This is the perfect starting point for anyone who has (somehow) missed out on playing these games and should hopefully open the door for more games in the future. If the movie if even half as good as this game then we’re in for a real treat.
This review of Ratchet & Clank is based on a retail copy for the PlayStation 4 which was provided by Sony Computer Entertainment.