Ratchet and Clank return in their best ps3 game to date to itch your trigger finger and scratch your head respectively.
shepowy wrote this review on .
Ratchet and Clanks second major outing on the ps3 sees the twosome split apart, as they try to find each other, discover the truths of their origins, as well as put a stop to returning villain Dr. Nefarious's dastardly plans.
In order to do this ratchet must of course shoot his way through an amassed array of enemies with his outlandish arsenal of weaponry, of course the series staples of the blaster and bomb glove return, as well as the rocket launcher like negotiator, and the groovitron glove, as well as this there are new guns such as the sonic erupter, which is a creature that burps out projectile shockwaves, and the rift inducer, that shoots out black holes from which alien tentacles emerge to grab enemies and pound them into the ground.
Whilst a crack in times arsenal of guns is good, and most serve up satisfying levels of destruction it's certainly not the largest collection of guns ratchet has ever had to work with, nor is it the most exciting, also the fact that your weapons can only be upgraded to lvl 5 through repeated use may irk long time ratchet fans even further.
But one aspect of a crack in time that is bound to rub you up the right way is the humour, the Ratchet and Clank games have always been known for this and the jokes are certainly on good form here, whether its Qwark making a fool of himself, or Nefarious blowing a fuse and dispensing cheesy space opera dialogue there is always something around the corner to make you chuckle.
Something that won't tickle your funny bone, but may have you scratching your head is Clanks excellent time recording puzzles.
In these sections clank must record his actions using time pads, in order to create multiple selves, so one may stand on a button on the floor that opens a door, while another recording makes it out of the door to move forward, combine multiple buttons that need to be pressed, up to 4 recordings, and a time limit to recordings, and some of the later Clank levels can give a gamer pause for thought. These levels offer a great change of pace from Ratchets slice of all out action, whilst never being too difficult to become frustrating.
But if you want a little challenge in your games, and do not mind a little frustration, than experienced gamers may consider taking advantage of a crack in times new difficulty settings, which are a first for the series and is certainly a welcome addition to Ratchet and Clanks expertly honed formula.
An additional element added to a crack in time is space travel and indeed combat. Previously in the series you would hop in your ship select a planet and zoom off in some cut scenes, land and then explore the planet, but now you get to travel between planets yourself on a 2d plane, shooting at hostile space crafts that get in your way, completing side quests for troubled travellers, and even explore mini-planets for some enticing collectibles.
Of course a crack in time retains the currency of previous titles, the bolts that appear upon smashing a crate apart and defeating enemies can then be used to purchase weapons and armour to improve ratchets effectiveness in combat, there is also the rarer gold bolts to discover, as well as constructo-mods that can change and improve your weapons effectiveness by offering say a shot that can pierce through multiple enemies, or a type of bullet that hits enemies and bounces off to damage other enemies. There are also little robotic creatures called zoni to collect in order to progress to certain planets, and if you collect all 40 zoni a secret boss encounter is unlocked.
Speaking of bosses there are a few notable encounters with the main antagonists in the game, as well as a surprise boss at the end, they prove to be quite the obstacle on the harder difficulties, especially the last one.
There are also some hectic large scale battles with many enemies, and even the odd mini-boss thrown in for good measure that can prove to be quite entertaining, it is also very impressive that the frame rate never drops, and the action remains smooth throughout.
Smooth is very much the word when describing how Ratchet and Clank a crack in time looks. It is a great looking game, the best looking in the entire Ratchet and Clank cannon infact, it is expected to look better on the ps3, but it's also a marked improvement upon the main predecessor to the game, tools of destruction, with bigger explosions, shinier shiny things, and a terrific use of space, in more ways than one.
A tad disappointing however is the lack of enemy and npc variety when compared to other Ratchet and Clank games; however given the variety of environments it isn't too distracting to be a problem.
Also compared to other Ratchet and Clank games it is probably one of the shorter campaigns if your just interested in finishing the story, though with all the collecting, questing and battling in a combat arena your play time can be extended considerably.
In conclusion in many ways Ratchet and Clank a crack in time is the best in the series, the best looking, the best clank sections, and the best from start to finish, however there a few areas that insomniac could have made bigger and better, certainly the weapons, but never the less a crack in time is the best outing on the ps3 so far for the terrific twosome, and is a shining star in the Lombax and little robot pairings galaxy.