Last weekend I finally finished Ratchet & Clank 3 and so here is a small review of it :-) As with Ratchet & Clank 2, Insomniac simply took the predecessor and made it better.
For example: While I loved the weapons system in RC2, there were too few upgrades available for my taste. So now you can upgrade your weapons (in the normal mode) to level 5. But this also comes with a downside. While in RC2 the update actually sometimes felt like a totally new weapon, in RC3 most of the upgrade are just marginal updates like higher frequency or simply stronger. Only I think 2 out of those 5 are complete upgrades. For example the Shield you might know from RC2 is more or less the same up to level 4. All you get is, that it perhaps holds up enemies a little longer each time and you get more “ammo”. But at least level 5 is once again the shooting shield :D
The humor (the other big selling point for me for all the Ratchet & Clank games) is also great once again. The whole game actually takes place inside of a war against your stereotyped big bad guy who is basically a cyborg … and who seems to switch into the soap opera TV-channel when he’s getting too mad. So he basically freezes and all you hear him saying is stuff from some soap opera. There are also the soldiers on the “good side” who are also robots but are completely cowards. Absolute hilarious :D
The levels? Well … basically more of the same. Not that this is bad, though. I loved the levels in RC2 and I also love the ones in RC3. There are also some new ideas here and there (not really totally new, but at least something different from what you normally get in the series) like using lasers and some kind of a reflector weapon to connect lasers to reactivate the defensive shield of a palace. There’s a mini-moon level where you use the same weapon to reactivate a satellite network.
A new element are the more or less regular “challenges”. Remember the arenas in RC2? It’s basically the same idea but more situated in the warzone this time. For example: Once you have to fight back enemy forces and capture a hover ship. In the next stage you then have to use this ship to disable enemy posts. And after that you take your
cowards buddies and destroy the enemy base.
Actually there was nothing that I didn’t like about RC3 … OK, perhaps except the voice acting of the German edition were they seem to have switched the actors (or they just had a really bad week). And I don’t mean the quality of the voice acting. It was great as always. It’s just that esp. Ratchet sounded different this time.
The other thing was, that while RC2 had basically 2 areas where you could totally stock up your weapons and get lots of bolts (the desert and the ice planet), RC3 only has one: The sewers. But on the other hand you have a big tournament where finishing the last challenge gives you tons of bolts … I think it was something around 500,000 ;-) So it’s not really a problem. I just loved those two areas in RC2 and was kind of disappointed when I just got the sewer in RC3.
But apart from this, Ratchet & Clank 3 and basically the whole series in my opinion really belongs into the collection of every PS2 owner, or at least into those of people who don’t totally hate action games with strange animal-like creatures wielding guns ;-)