Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal review
Doesn't seem right

The good:

Highly addictive adventure+shooting gameplay.
Can be challenging at times.
Fixes some faults that the original and Going Commando had.
A little longer than the last 2 games.
Better graphics.
Better versions of some of the older guns.
Slightly enhanced rumor.

The bad:

Some faults that the last 2 games had are still around.
Can get frustrating.
The enemy AI is far more random this time around; some are dumb, some can predict your movements and kill you quickly.
Still too short.
Proves to be very easy at times; especially when your weapons upgrade at a fast rate.
Pretty damn glitchy.
The humor could be a little more "mature".
No more Grind Boots, Hoverboard/Hoverbike Races or Space Battles; just land combat and limited exploration


Ratchet and Clank still proves to be a mediocre series struggling to impress us well. You would expect that Insomniac would make this game last longer and stop giving us the random enemy AI, but instead, the AI is more random than ever and, while this lasted a fair while, still proves to take as little time as possible with as little difficulty as possible.

The game starts with Ratchet and Clank playing some sort of game that crosses Dungeons and Dragons with Chess (). Then Clank turns on the TV and it shows a TV show where Clank is a secret agent, blowing up enemy robots. The next scene shows Clank and some of, what I like to call, whores, picking up his limo from the valet, which is played by Ratchet, which, of course, pissed Ratchet off (if you were acting as a low form of life on a big TV show, you'd be pretty pissed too). Then Rachet turns the TV to the news and sees his planet getting the shit blown out of it by an alien race known as the Tyrranoids (or Noids for short). Ratchet and Clank then fly their ship towards Ratchet's planet and then they have to save the planet. Once the planet has been saved, Ratchet and Clank need to look for someone who can take down this new evil madman known as Dr Naferious. The man ends up being Captain Qwark (who is re-tarded when you find him). His memory must be restored, then you and several other characters from the original Ratchet and Clank game, as well as some new characters, join forces to make a team. The team must kill the Tyrranoids and Dr Naferious. The rest of the story explains itself in the form of some cutscenes.

Don't worry, you'll figure out the rest of this story without having to do much outside the main story.

First off, in Going Commando, there were 2 stadiums that both kept on expanding everytime you went further in the game, got a new weapon and/or have completed the earlier events. In this one, you only have 1 coliseum that either have events which involves a deathcourse where you have to traverse through it while trying to stay alive or a gladiator-style event where it's Ratchet onto an army of Robots, Gladiators and Tyrranoids. The challenges there can differ from easy to hard, depending on how you manage to play each event, your strategy and this thing called "common sense". Yes, in these gladiator cups, more common sense is needed. Unlike in GC's gladiator cups, the enemies come in swarms and won't hesitate to kill you. In the earlier cups, the enemies will just swarm and swing their weapons when you get close to them, which means they can kill each other. Going further and further, the enemies will grow some brains and a good pair of balls and swarm and kill quickly. The prizes are bolts (and sometimes, gadgets).

Secondly, in Going Commando (again), there were instances where you battled enemies with your ship. This time, space battles are a miss and in its place is some shitty replacement known as "missions with the galactic forces". The first few times, the missions do provide some sort of challenge and/or have interesting conditions, but as you get further in the game, the missions will be the same thing: Kill enemies; either with a ship or on foot, turn some bolt cranks or defend something. It's interesting the first couple of times, but throughout the game, it's going to be samey, therefore, repetitive. Now, yes, the space battles were also repetitive, but the space battles also provided a lot of challenge. In space battles, you had to watch all corners, with no radar or any form of direction. With these "missions", you have a lot of sense of direction, the enemies are low in numbers and it isn't half as chaotic nor fun. In space battles, the ship was fast. In missions, Ratchet is fairly slow unless he has access to vehicles, which is pretty rare. Both have one weakness that is the same: Repetitiveness. However, with the space battles, again, it is fast paced, meaning that repetitiveness is what could make this better. While in missions, repeititveness is bad. Considering that missions are a lot like normal gameplay only with the galactic rangers, it's just playing normally but with a few thousand bolts as a prize. However, I just thought that there should be space battles in this title.

Thirdly, in the original and GC, there were Grind Boots. There aren't this time around. Grind Boots added some challenge in the last 2 games, so without them, this game has lost some of the normal challenge. Grind Boots, for the clueless, are boots that grind on certain rails. If you fall off a rail, you die. You have to jump rail-to-rail a lot. But why am I writing that? You'll never experience something like that in Up Your Arsenal (this game)! So that is another fun point off this game.

Fourthly, there were races in the first 2 games. This game lacks any form of racing. Racing in the first game was for the purpose of items. Racing in Going Commando was for the purpose of items and to get some spare change. There are no races in this game as this game has focused too much on combat and adventure. Racing was added as a fun way to get bolts and skill points. However, this one just doesn't have races, which means it has not too much fun within it.

Fifthly, this game feels more linear than the last two games. In the original, the worlds were big and expansive, with lots of exploration value. In Going Commando, the worlds were a bit more linear but has more sidequests and harder AI which wasn't re-tarded or weren't masterminds. Also, in Going Commando, you had this thing called more freedom. In this Ratchet and Clank game, freedom is more limited. From collecting Sewer Crystals for the plumber you have seen in the other two games; to gladiator cups; to doing missions. I counted 3-4 things that weren't relating to the main story. That is not many at all, making this game pretty damn linear. Not good at all.

Look on the bright side; if you like adventuring and blasting your enemies to bits, this game might actually prove to be better than the last two. I thought this was far better than the original even though the original had more freedom. The original was slow paced with shitty weapons. This one is fairly chaotic (though not nearly as chaotic as Ratchet: Gladiator, but more than Going Commando), with a lot of action and you are going to need fast reflexes. For example, just today, I was storming through one of the levels with just 1 bit of health left and I was about half way to the objective when I hit 1 HP. I just stormed the place with whatever gun would help me survive and a lot of strafing and sideflips.

There aren't half as many continue points this time around as there were in Going Commando; you're going to have to sideflip, backflip, mash the X and O buttons and choose your weapons carefully in order to live. If you die and you're very close to a continue point, you will have to start from the continue point that is far, far away from where you are. That is why you need fairly fast reflexes or a really good strategy like falling back when your ammo is low and only attacking when the enemies are altogether so you don't waste your ammo.

Some weapons do not have multi-targeting features. In fact, some of them hit one enemy like the N60 Storm. Some weapons are melee weapons, like the Omniwrench or the Plasma Whip. And some weapons from past Ratchet and Clank games make a return. You can get the original's weapons at the Startship Phoenix and you can get Going Commando's weapons from Slim Cognito (the same guy who selled Ship Parts in Going Commando) at Aquatos. This time around, the upgrades aren't complete ass. Instead of a multi-hit weapon turning into a meteor that hits 1, the Lava Gun turns into Liquid-Nitrogen Gun which freezes the enemy. Although for that to happen, you'll need to upgrade it quite a bit by using it a lot to kill enemies.

I guess it's that time...


Gameplay: 3
Unless you have fast reflexes, fast thinking or a good overall strategy, you're going to have a hard time going through some of the levels. There are two ways to take this. Either be a pussie and fall back when your weapons are screwed or be a man and use the weapons to the full extent when you're low on health and need to kick some ass.

Control: 5
I don't know about the readers, but these are possibly some of the easiest controls I have come across. First off, all platformers which aren't in this series (excluding the original) and the Jak and Daxter series have really average or pissy controls that take time to master. The only time you'll need mastering these controls is when it starts getting chaotic. Remember, though, these controls aren't exactly perfect. There is the simple screw-up with Quick Select, otherwise, these controls are pretty easy to master.

Story: 3
The story is quite average at best. It's the samn damn thing as the original and Going Commando. Ratchet has to save the galaxy he saved in the original game. I won't go too far into detail, though, you could get this (and Going Commando) and watch the cutscenes and play.

Graphics: 4
The graphics just look better and better, now with more vibrant surroundings, more violent deaths and more colors around the worlds you have to go to. My main concern here is the fact that the explosions are more plentiful, and if they hurt your eyes, this will cause a fair lot of serizures. Turn your brightness down a fair bit before playing this.

Sound: 2
The voice acting is pretty cool and some of the sounds are pretty good. Maybe if the sound effect staff and the voice actors would get rid of those blankets and stop covering them up with sounds that make me want to pry out my ears, I would probably be able to give my ears something good.

Lifespan: 2
This is my main concern. Since this is fairly linear and only barely scratches the 18 hour mark, this might not last too long. There is a hard mode, but that is more of the same linear gameplay. There is online, but you will get sick of it in a couple of months. If you don't have online, this will last for little time. If you want to upgrade all weapons, get all Titanium Bolts, etc., it will range to around 30-40 hours since they're kind of hard to do. However, by the time you finish it the first time, you'll probably get sick of it due to the lack of something better to do than move and kill.

Funfactor: 3
I don't have online, but I hear that it's like playing the missions, only with weird soldiers instead of robots and no reinforcements. There is no gore or swearing, but that is maybe what makes the "humor" suffer a bit. See...if you want humor in a game, there needs to be some form of swearing or "middle finger". In some part of the game, someone asks for Clank and insults Ratchet. Ratchet should've given the guy the finger instead of just turning off the screen. Yes, this is for kids, but the kids need to learn of this stuff earlier than I did.

Bottom Line:

This mediocre series just hit a bump after Going Commando. Going Commando proved better than the original but this just proved to succeed little over the original but prove worse than Going Commando. Before getting this game, get Going Commando and enjoy that. Then you can try this one.

Many problems made this huge mission a 3.1/5.0

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