"In my opinion, the PS3 hasnít had any exclusive games that appealed to me with the exception of Metal Gear Solid 4 and Final Fantasy XIII which are still a long ways away. However, when I saw previews for the new Ratchet & Clank game and learned it was coming out in Fall 2007, I was excited. I played the demo at the Penny Arcade Expo in August and loved it. My roommate has a PS3 but all the games he owns are crappy sports game so I had to fix that by waiting for my local Blockbuster to have a..."
In my opinion, the PS3 hasnít had any exclusive games that appealed to me with the exception of Metal Gear Solid 4 and Final Fantasy XIII which are still a long ways away. However, when I saw previews for the new Ratchet & Clank game and learned it was coming out in Fall 2007, I was excited. I played the demo at the Penny Arcade Expo in August and loved it. My roommate has a PS3 but all the games he owns are crappy sports game so I had to fix that by waiting for my local Blockbuster to have a copy of Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction to rent which explains me being a few months late to getting to this game.
Tools of Destruction is the sixth game in the series and if youíve played any of them then you should have a good idea about what theyíre about. The story revolves around the cat-like Lombax, Ratchet, and his smart-talking robot friend, Clank. It seems just as soon as our heroes start relaxing from the last time they saved the galaxy, a new evil approaches, and this game is no different. The self-proclaimed ruler of space and time, Emperor Percival Tachyon is hell-bent on releasing his Cragmite kin from another dimension and annihilating the last of the Lombaxes, Ratchet. Now itís up to Ratchet and Clank to stop Tachyonís evil plan.
Like the other games in the series, youíll jump across platforms and fight hordes of enemies. Ratchet is initially equipped with a minimum arsenal, including his wrench for melee combat, a blaster rifle for firing at a distance, and fusion grenades for blowing up groups of enemies. As you progress through the game, you will acquire new weapons and gadgets, including devices that may give you an advantage in battles. One device that was very helpful yet had limited ammunition was the Groovitron where you fire out a disco ball that causes all the enemies in the vicinity to start dancing instead of attacking. Defeating enemies and destroying objects will drop bolts which is the gameís form of currency for purchasing weapons and ammunition. In addition, you can pick up Raritanium Crystals which are needed for upgrading weapons, which can help in defeating stronger foes. In addition to purchasing upgrades, your weapons gain experience when used which allows them to level up like in an RPG, additionally Ratchetís health increases upon defeating enemies. Regardless of how you fight, the staple of the series has always been blowing stuff up.
Clank is attached to Ratchetís back and provides support to Ratchetís jumps such as hovering in midair and propelling him higher. Throughout the game Clank will encounter small robot creatures known as the Zoni and they provide him with upgrades such as the ability to fly or to fire a laser that can cut holes into rock walls. Additionally, there will be times where Clank will separate himself from Ratchet and will go on individual missions to retrieve an important item. In these levels, Clank is able to command a group of Zoni to power up devices or move objects to progress.
Throughout the game, there will be parts that utilize the PS3ís SIXAXIS tilt controls. Among these instances include freefalling toward the ground to avoid objects in the air, controlling tornadoes from a gun that fires them out. One of the tilting activities that frustrated me were times when you hacked a security by rolling a marble to complete a circuit from one point to another. Sorry, but I think I prefer the tube-swapping hacking game from Bioshock over this.
Aside from that, the game is still great and it maintains the humor and witty dialogue thatís been present in all of the Ratchet games. Everything from the weapon descriptions to the pirate crewís annoying yet humorous shanties help make the story entertaining and I found myself laughing several times throughout the game. All the jokes couldnít have been pulled off without the talent of the voice actors that have been part of the series since the beginning. James Arnold Taylor still portrays the role of Ratchet as are the other actors for their respective roles. Like the other games in the series, the constant explosions you create usually overshadow the music. However, the pirate theme from this game is probably the only music that stood out from anything else in the series. The rest of the music is just intense background music that maintains the gameís atmosphere. The sound in general is a blast.
Since this is the first Ratchet & Clank game for the PS3, itís also the first time the duo appeared in high-definition. A character in the game even says he didnít recognize them at first for being in high-definition, and itís funny to see a game tout its own merits. While I was restrained to a crappy 12-inch standard definition television in my dorm room, the game still looks better than any of its predecessors.
In closing, Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction is a fantastic game and is definitely a must have for the PS3 (which isnít saying much since you can count all of them with one hand). This entry follows its predecessorís with a relatively short length of about ten hours. Unlike Up Your Arsenal and Deadlocked, which featured online multiplayer modes, Tools of Destruction features none. However, like the other games, you can continue your completed file to search all of the gold bolts and unlock all of the skill point achievements. Of course, more difficult version of the game, challenge mode, which also includes inflated bolt acquisition, is still available upon completing the game. All in all, you should definitely play this game if you havenít yet.
Community review by Ness (January 16, 2008)
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