This is a HD collection of the first three Ratchet & Clank games with HD remastered graphics as well as 3D option for PS3. This collection also supports Trophies for each game.
2) Ratchet & Clank HD Review
This is the first Ratchet & Clank game originally released for PS2. The game's story began when Ratchet first met Clank in planet Veldin, as Clank crash landed to the planet to find the hero called Captain Qwark to save the galaxy from an evil businessman called Drek. Both went on an adventure together to find Captain Qwark in different planets as well as stopping the evil businessman's plans.
This game perhaps feature a good deal of character development of Ratchet, from being a selfish feline alien into a heroic alien. The characters in this game have memorable designs, and they have rather simple roles in this game. The villains are pretty great too, despite the large number of supporting characters. The humour is pretty solid as well, like the RYNO joke.
The gameplay is a mix of action and platforming, with emphasis on puzzle solving. Most of the time, you will control Ratchet as the primary playable character, and Clank has it's own playable sections. Ratchet has an arsenal of awesome and sometimes bizarre weapons, where you can purchase from vendors in every planet you visit. You can only progress to new planets after completing certain missions, as you may need gadgets and coordinates to get there. Ratchet can jump, use a melee attack, fire his weapon, and climb as well as do many other actions with the help of gadgets.
Firing weapons require ammo, and ammo can be obtained by destroying boxes. You may also acquire Bolts as currency by defeating enemies or breaking boxes to buy ammo or new weapons. Both Ratchet and Clank have their own health points, so dying each time qill require you to restart from the latest checkpoint.
Occasionally in different planets, you will encounter bosses as well as piloting a spaceship to battle. Both gameplay sections are incredibly fun to play, with some easy to learn controls. There are also side missions and optional things to be done in this game, such as racing and collecting Gold Bolts.
The game's graphics is amazing despite it's age. The in-game engine cutscenes, gameplay and character models look great in remastered form. However, the pre-render cutscenes still look a bit dated compared to that. The characters have memorable designs and the level designs look spectacular and unique for each planet.
The voice acting is solid, and the music is great. This game's Ratchet's voice actor did not return in any subsequent games, as he was replaced with James Arnold Taylor with all subsequent Ratchet & Clank games. The music is great, fitting on each level.
The replay value is rather moderate, since this game does not offer a true Challenge Mode where you can obtain lots of Bolts as well as new weapons. However, you can play the game again using the same save file to acquire all weapons or complete all Skill Points.
This is the beginning of the greatness of Ratchet & Clank games, and this game sets a precursor benchmark for action and platforming games. There are some issues present in this game, however, such as poor camera angles, predictable storyline and initially unlikable main characters. Regardless, this game is worth playing for any action & platforming game fans.
Final Score: 9/10
3) Ratchet & Clank 2: Going Commando HD Review
This is the second Ratchet & Clank game in HD, with some new gameplay improvements like the ability to strafe while shooting and more gameplay variations. The game's story began after the events of the first game, where Ratchet is out on a mission to find a secret experiment on a spaceship. However, he ended up failing to get it as he is often interrupted with several "accidents".
The game's story is longer than the first game, and the characters are instantly more likable, possibly due to better relation to the main two characters. The new characters are very well-characterised and likable, such as the Thugs-4-Less Leader, who is both funny and threatening enough to make players feel him as an evil character. Special props to Steven Blum, the voice actor of the Thugs-4-Less Leader. Ratchet's voice actor is also replaced, who is notably the voice actor of Tidus in Final Fantasy X. I prefer James Arnold Taylor's voice as Ratchet in this game and subsequent games than the first game, but the first game's Ratchet's voice actor is great as well.
The gameplay is still a mix of combat, platforming, and puzzle-solving. This game also sports some new game controls like strafing, which is a simple yet effective shooting in third person view games. A good amount of variety of other minigames also include space combat, racing, and many more. Boss fights also return in this game, where many of the boss fights are incredibly fun and well-done.
A new gameplay feature in this game is weapon leveling system. Each weapon has their own levels, and each can be upgraded when you use them enough in combat such as when defeating enemies. As your weapon level up, it's effectiveness will increase, such as increased firepower and ammo. Weapon mods are also featured in the game, and you can customise certain aspects of your weapons further.
Again, the game's graphics is amazing, with impressive in-game engine levels and cutscenes. Prerendered cutscenes still suffer dated looks, so be aware of that. No serious technical issues encountered while playing this game.
The soundtrack is good and suitable in different levels. The voice acting is also incredibly good, with increased humour compared to the first game.
The replay value is high, as you can opt to collect every collectibles in the game and complete all Missions. This game also features Challenge Mode, where you can play the game again in another playthrough with all of your upgrades carried over. In Challenge Mode, you have the ability to gain Bolts (currency) in an increased rate, purchase better weapon upgrades, as well as fighting tougher enemies.
This game is a major improvement over the first game, with no solid disadvantages I could possible comment about.
Final Score: 10/10
4) Ratchet & Clank 3: Up Your Arsenal HD Review
This is the third Ratchet & Clank game remastered in HD. After the events of the first two games, Ratchet found out that his home planet is under attack by aliens. Both Ratchet & Clank rushed to rescue the planet from a certain destruction.
The story is solid as well in this game, with both new and old likable characters as well. The Q-Force team members are funny, despite many of them being unreliable in combat. The new villain, Dr. Nefarious, is a funny, threatening and evil robot who wants to destroy all organic lifeforms. Special props to the voice actor Armin Shimmerman for delivering funny yet memorable performance as the character in this game as well as the subsequent games.
In comparison to previous two games, combat is more heavily emphasised in this game, where many Missions in this game require you to fight waves of enemies. This game has more larger areas to explore compared to previous two games. Minigames, puzzle solving, and platforming are still present in this game however.
Despite solid and great gameplay, this game does not introduce many new features compared to the second game, except a certain 2D sidescrolling action minigame, not unlike Mega Man games. You may also choose to play the online multiplayer mode if you wish. The boss fights are still the highlight of Ratchet & Clank games, and they are still well-made in this game.
The game's graphics is, as always, great. Great looking character models, environments, animations and in-game engine cutscenes. Prerendered cutscenes are still used however, and they are noticeably in lower quality compared to in-game engine cutscenes.
The soundtrack is good, and the voice acting is great as always. The humour is also used effectively in this game as well.
Replay value is high, where you can attempt to tackle Challenge Mode in this game with increased difficulty level as well as the ability to purchase more destructive weapons to use. You may also opt to play the multiplayer mode if you wish.
Despite not having much improvments over previous games, this is still a solid good game that mixes shooting, platforming and minigames really well.
Final Score: 9/10
Despite some aging on the pre-rendered cutscenes, this collection boasts three solid games with impressive mix of combat, platforming, and minigames. Not only each game has interesting storylines, the characters are also very likable. By playing the games in order of release, you may notice there are subtle yet good improvements made between the first two games. The third game, only retain the quality of the second game despite having not many improvements. The real criticisms of this HD collection include lack of bonus content such as PS3 themes, and other content. Otherwise, this is a solid HD collection of three impressively made games.
Pros and Cons
- Solid gameplay throughout all three games.
- Impressive artstyle and character designs.
- Good amount of content for all three games.
- Impressive and unique arsenal of weapons in all three games.
- Fun minigames in all three games.
- Lacks bonus content like PS3 themes.
- Pre-rendered cutscenes look noticeably dated compared to in-game engine cutscenes.
- Clunky and stiff controls in the first game.