Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Review: Ratchet and Clank All 4 One

I actually don't really want to review this because of the mood I'm in but it's best I review it while it's still fresh in my head. I was excited to see a new Ratchet and Clank when it was first announced but after slogging through this one I really want a new game but from the part of Insomniac Games that actually made the previous ones. Doesn't sound to good already doesn't it? Well if you're a fan... it's about to get worse.

The games story has Ratchet, Clank, President Captain Qwark and Dr. Nefarious getting kidnapped by a giant sphere like drone.After waking up in a facility and being helped to escape by a girl names Susie, they are forced to team up to survive on what's left of the planet Magnus and to stop the Ephemeris creature collector and Nevo's evil plot. The humor of the game is still in tacked but it's not like the previous games, this is more kid friendly.

They game plays like a castrated version of previous games... what does that mean you ask? Well let's start with the fact you can't control the camera at all! Instead the right stick selects your weapon. The targeting is automatic and it almost never targets what you want to hit. It's easy to get blindsided by an enemy because the camera can't be controlled and puzzles require not thought to solve. Also the game is designed to force multiplayer.

Those who know the series knows that the game is a platform/shooter. While this is true the auto targeting screws up the shooting for veterans ands to make matters worse weapons no longer upgrade through use, they instead require you to buy upgrades with bolts. This makes it not worth using certain weapons because most people will just focus on the most powerful or most ammo weapons. There is also a weapons overload ability that makes the damage higher when more then one player uses the same weapon on a target. This is a great addition but people will fight over which weapon to use and the A.I. always wants you to use what it wants... which is always the most powerful weapons. Fighting the A.I. over what weapon to use is more frustrating then people without headsets! Ammo is also no longer in boxes, instead there are ammo refill stations placed at specific locations.

Now while the plaforming isn't too much different, it now require you to team up with either an idiotic A.I. or other players(online or offline) to activate devices or cross larger gaps. While it doesn't sound bad it's actually frustrating when players are fighting each other over camera focus or the A.I. goes brain dead and you can't proceed. Also co-ordinating anything is frustrating both with players and with the A.I.

The enemies also have an extremely high amount of health and what's worse is that the bosses while fun to fight, have WAY to much health and make the fights long and boring somethings. They all have patterns that are way to easy to follow but it's because this game is after all for families and kids to play, not us Ratchet and Clank veterans.

Skill points return to the game and this is where the veterans will rejoice because they are still as fun and challenging to obtain unlike the golden bolts. Yes they even dumbed down finding the golden bolts by making most of them extremely easy to find... by putting them in plain sight! Completing Skill points will earn you cheat like in the past to have extra fun with the game and the golden bolt unlock costumes for the characters... but you need to find them for all the characters, not just the one.

Playing with people online and offline is essentially the same experience except lag issues and lack of headsets makes playing online frustrating sometimes... what am I saying sometimes, I mean all the time. Also because of having more then 2 players at one time the frame rate sufferers dearly for it. I mean it's bad enough it's got a lower frame rate to other Ratchet and Clank games but when you've got 4 players on screen and a ton of enemies onscreen the word "Clusterf*ck" doesn't do it justice and it's a low frame rate clusterf*ck that can freeze on you sometimes too.

Ratchet and Clank All 4 One is a game that tries to force multiplayer on you and is a watered down experience. This game was designed with kids and families in mind. If you're a veteran playing with your family you will be frustrated by both how it plays and how your family plays. If you play single player the A.I. is so brain dead that you'll want to play with people for slightly less frustration. All and all it's not a bad game, just not really meant for veteran fans to be challenged with. The story and all the stuff to obtain will keep you occupied for a long while if you're patient but if you pass on it I won't blame you. Also if you don't like playing with other people I would pass on this game, it punishes the loner!

Score 3/5

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