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4.6 out of 5 stars
Ratchet & Clank: A Crack In Time (PS3)
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51 of 55 people found the following review helpful
Where to begin...

The gameplay has been so perfectly refined in the years the franchise had been going that it's simply the best platformer available on any console. If you've never played the series before, it's a good place to start, though it does follow on directly from the previous two so you might want to pick those up first. If you're looking for a new platformer and are having doubts, read on...

The gameplay is a seamless blend of platforming, action combat and puzzles, each intensifying as the story progresses. When I played the first of the PS3 R&C titles the thing I was mostly impressed by was the sheer amount of information the screen could handle at any time- bolts (in-game currency) flying everywhere, enemy fire coming in from all sides, the level of destruction is vast and handled smoothly by the console. Imagine facing a horde of thirty-odd enemies, dodging fire while dealing out some of your own, all while facing an ever-dwindling supply of health thanks to some nasty nerve toxin. That's just one of the game's combat challenges (mandatory, mind you) that adds a different flavour to the usual run-and-gun, encouraging a kind of absolute concentration that's initially tricky to master but thrilling to execute. Most interesting of all though are the Clank levels, in which you often have to record your own actions and then replay the levels in tandem with the recording(s) in order to achieve multiple targets, all in under a minute. These are the game's one true innovation, and are as frustrating to figure out as they are rewarding to complete.

The game's humour is the best of any I can remember, from the always-hysterical Qwark's myriad one-liners ("keep the change, villain!" and "it's like time is all...not working" among the best) to the constantly apologising robots ("WE.WERE.JUST.KIDDING.WOULD.YOU.LIKE.TO.GO.FOR.SOME.PIE?"), or Dr. Nefarious' screaming for his butler LAWRENNNNNNCE and the various assorted aliens aping actors as* diverse as Woody Allen and Peter Lorre. I also picked up references to Seinfeld and Star Trek among many others. In addition to the humour there's a few moments of genuine sadness too, owing much to the game's exploration of family and in particular, fatherhood. Deep stuff.

Graphically, it's at least the best looking game of it's kind of this generation, only less impressive than those games that go for photorealism. Each of the game's planets looks nothing less than amazing, from the nuclear winter of the Tombli Outpost to the heatstroke haze of the Molonoth Fields. The planets are sprawling, vast landscapes with distinctly non-linear paths that encourage exploration for collectables such as bolts, weapon schematics and upgrades. This is extended with the addition of the moon levels, essentially mini levels focused entirely on platforming or combat. It would be easy, given their skewed camera angles and gravity allowances, to criticize these as Super Mario Galaxy rip-offs, but let's not forget that Ratchet and Clank games had been set in space for years before the portly Italian set his sights on the skies, so it was an inevitable conclusion. Speaking of the emptier regions of space, Tools Of Destructions' on-rails shooting sections have been abolished in favour of free roaming sections that allow you to explore for side missions and enemies for levelling up.

While the score is suitably orchestral if underwhelming, the voice acting is second to none. Jim Ward's Captain Qwark I've already covered, though Dr. Nefarious gives him a run for his money as the series' best character. Kudos to Armin Shimerman (surely familiar to Buffy fans and Trekkies), whose throat must have been wrecked when the recording sessions were done. The rest of the cast give it their best too but these characters are beyond praise.

In short, everything from the previous PS3 titles that could be improved upon has been. In terms of length, it took me a good 20 hours to finish the main story, although that was a very thorough run through on the hardest difficulty. Still, it's a refreshing break from the standard 12 hour run-throughs that we accept these days as long as there's multiplayer bundled in. Platinum trophy hunters ought to wrench (hohoho!) another week out of it, too. Quite simply the best platform game ever made.

*Have you ever SEEN such alliteration!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 17 September 2014
We continue from the end of Quest For Booty, Dr. Nefarious has abducted Clank and taken him to a facility known as the Great Clock. Dr. Nefarious is hell bent on trying to access Clank’s memory banks in order to find out the secrets of this powerful facility. It’s a race against time to get the clock, find Clank and put Nefarious’ plans to an end.

The characters are always a joy to watch, Captain Qwark is a confused hero as he shows courage then switches to being cowardly in an instance. Dr. Nefarious is wonderfully evil, assertive and doesn’t take any crap from anyone. The script is excellent, to the extent of the supporting character being completely nuts and ridiculous, but it works and gives everything else that extra sparkle.

The Great Clock is wonderful in design and art direction, a complex creation with many pieces and attachments stretching as far as the eye can see. Environments are diverse in design and colour schemes; some worlds may be futuristic utopias, whereas others are lush jungles that inhabit ancient civilisations. Character design is as creative and expressive as ever, ranging from bizarre to adorable-looking aliens. The game engine performs very well to render large open environments, displaying verticality in design and showcasing incredible animation.

The space environments are open in design, filled with tiny planets that you can venture upon; comets hurl by at breakneck speeds and enemy satellites track your movements. It all looks spectacular and I guarantee you won’t be in any hurry to do the story missions. The destruction looks amazing, mix up your combat options and blow everything to pieces. The soundtrack is funky and a small selection of radio stations is available during space travel. Sound design is excellent, weapons sound powerful and menacing. The voice acting is diverse and creative, many alien species are a joy to listen to and effortless make you grin the more you hear them.

Level design can ultimately be too linear, the game aims to keep the pacing tight as it constantly pushes you forward, but alternate routes or branching paths would have been a welcome inclusion.

You’ll start with basic weapons, the more you progress and the more credits you rack up will help expand your inventory into a formidable collection. The Groovitron is a classic, Constructor Bombs are deadly up close or from a distance, Sonic Eruption keeps enemies at bay, or use the trusty Mr. Zurkon as a miniature ass kicking robot bodyguard. These are just some of the weapons available, many more are ready for you to unlock and some can be upgraded with powerful attachments. Throughout the game, you will unlock special items for our hero, these will be critical components in order to complete missions successfully and give you a strong advantage in battle.Enemies merely act as cannon fodder and there intelligence is very limited, that’s not a negative because they just want to come at you with everything they have.

The fantastic grind-rail sections are back, adding speed and dexterity to the gameplay. There are gameplay sequences that involve some high-speed movement as you jump from aerial platforms and bounce off giant boost pads onto distant areas. Ratchet also uses his trusty spaceship to get around the various systems, but this isn’t a simple trip when Nefarious’ forces are watching his every move. Your spacecraft is very manoeuvrable, the ability to barrel roll is a useful evasive technique and your weapons are just as powerful when encountering enemy crafts. Your spaceship can be upgraded by collecting Zoni, add greater thrust power, improve your defensive capabilities or give yourself extra offensive options. improving the abilities of your spaceship should always be taken into consideration. The free roam gameplay in space is a great distraction away from story missions, you can also visit smaller planets to find collectables and thus give you the chance to improve your weapons at a quicker rate.

There are a variety of challenges to take on; some involve fighting in a giant arena, as you take on waves of enemies. If you crave some serious action then get to that arena and prove your worth! I’ve rambled on about Ratchet, though Clank has his own quest and this aims to give your brain a workout. Clank is at the Great Clock for a purpose, to master time and oversee the power of this amazing facility. There are many puzzles and challenges to overcome as you are given a special item to help you on your journey.

The gameplay sequences involving Clank are a nice change of pace, the puzzles are clever but this could have been mixed up with greater combat. There is combat for the little robot, but it is extremely repetitive and doesn’t do anything to enrich the experience. The controls can also be fiddly during high speed gameplay.

I‘ve had a complete blast playing this game; it improves upon Quest For Booty in many ways and adds plenty into the gameplay mix. Ratchet and Clank are two characters that are a joy to watch together or separately, and they have some fantastic supporting characters to bind them in their adventures.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 8 November 2010
Having never played a Ratchet and Clank game, I wondered if it might be a little 'kiddish', but thankfully I was wrong. Don't let that low age-rating fool you, as many of the jokes kids won't even understand. And talking about the jokes, they are fast and a-plenty, but never get in the way of the game itself, which is good, because this is a really enjoyable piece of fun.

If you are looking for a really good game, with fantastic graphics and a great storyline, all the while finding yourself chuckling away, then this is definitely for you.

Might have to buy the other R&C games now.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on 3 December 2009
Love it! Each day, time seems to stand still while I'm at work as I'm so eager to get home, plonk myself down in front of my telebox and play this awesome game.

I've played every one in the series and as a child of 34, I'm slightly embarrassed that all my mate's are currently raving about Modern Warfare 2 when I'm more into actually enjoying a fun, action, platformer with great funny cut seens, witty diologue, intense gun battles with ever more weird and wonderful weaponary such as Mr Zurkon, Rachet's homicidal, suicidal, blaster weilding maniac body guard mini-robot.

It's just crazy fun and difficult enough to present a challenge to adult gamer's such as myself.

I'd recommend this to anyone who can't remember the last time they really ENJOYED a game and your kids will love it too.
It's the last in the series apparently??? :(
But they're going out on a high, that's for sure :)

I've loved playing many different types of games such as the uber scary, brilliant Dead Space, was amazed with both Uncharted games and I'll be playing Modern Warefare 2 next for sure, but Rachet and Clank remain my all time favorite franchise.
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on 4 December 2014
First a word of caution before you purchase this game. This is the finale of an ongoing trilogy and it is best that you play the previous games to know what's going on. Yes insomniac did include a little intro cinematic serving as a 'last time on' but it will be much more epic and dramatic if actually know who these characters are. Disclaimer aside, what can I say about the game.

This is one of my favorite games of all time, I'll list everything wrong with the game first as it will be easier. The game suffers from a few bugs, mostly audio ones, though there is a weird one where if you die during the final boss, you re spawn as the wrong character, so, no pressure but: do not die during the final boss and lastly the framerate occasionally dips from 60fps to 30.

Complaints out of the way I can now reasure you that everything else ranges from great to fantastic: Writing, voice acting, plot, music, artwork, animations and most importantly gameplay are all superb. I don't think any Ratchet and Clank game has had such a fun set of mechanics, to anyone who disagrees, I simply point you to the hover boots or the time bombs. This game reminds me of the original Jak and Daxter: colourful, charmingly light hearted, challenging but fun. I would ramble on longer but then I'd be wasting time so let me finish by saying that spending money on this game is money well spent, even if you should buy the other games frist, but hey, I can easily recommend those games as well. Okay they were release early in the life cycle of the ps3 so they don't look or play as well, but the story and charm is certainly still there. Buy all three and have a fun week of gaming!
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on 18 September 2011
A Crack in time

I skipped the short game "Quest for Booty" and shot straight into this powerful and awesome game that sees Ratchet try and seek his friend Clank who appears to have been lost in time through the Zoni. Opening with a great humorous introduction from Captain Qwark you can already tell this is better than Tools of Destruction, which was a good game, and so you know you're in for something special.

What is great about this release is it follows a very similar styling to T-o-D. The weapons are similar, you use similar gadgets, vendors are the same, controls are the same and eliminating the difficult frustrating segments.

Like all other Ratchet and Clank games there are bolts to collect, plans to assemble, small side tasks, stunning scenery graphics, challenging bosses and monsters to fight etc.

Whilst I'm currently half way through what I love already is the hoverboots. Hovering slightly above the ground you have the option of zooming around all over the place, its fast its ferocious sometimes its impossible and its simply great.

The layout game play is slightly different in that you are in sectors of space. You can have space battles and land on planets to collect Zoni and gold bolts.

But a major difference is the playing of Clank. Never before has Clank been fun to play as and here he is finally manageable. He has the ability to throw time bombs, to jump thrice in the air. What is a little tricky is a time and record sequence where you must record your action, then record another so you can get through doors.

I love this game. Honestly I have played nearly all from the very first and this, I'll say it, is the second best behind Ratchet Gladiator.

It may even be the best story the team have created as well.
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on 22 July 2010
Ratchet and Clank : Crack in time carries directly over from the previous title Tools of destruction ( Feel free to check out my review ) and its add on Quest for booty.
Released in 2009 it keeps the platform and shooting gameplay aspect with a simple puzzle element for a bit of variety.

As was the end of the last game, Clank has been captured and taken away by Dr Nefarious and Ratchet sets out to try and find him. Of course this all part of a much bigger scheme for Nefarious and so many challanges , twists and turns await Ratchet as he tries to save his freind but also finds out about where the duo have come from, as well as where they are going in the future.
The story runs along at a nice enough pace for a Ratchet and Clank game, it is one of the more emotional stories in the series as the question sorounding the game is wether the duo are meant to be toghether or wether this is where their paths split. It is intresting and engaging right to the end and probably my favorite storyline of the series.

Ratchet has a new gadget to accompany his wrench, new hoverboots allow you to fly about the level and give you more freedom to explore. However while these do let you travel higher and are more exciting, you can still expect to be hitting the invisible walls.
Ratchet can also set off in his ship to investigate moons and other planets, but these planets often are just for collecting or small challenges which add little to the game except a gimmick.
Clank has the less exciting ability to stop time, via his Chronosceptor. This can also be used as a melee weapon in the same way has Ratchet's wrench from previous games.
In addition to this Clank can use "time pads", these are a weird bit of equipment and resemble the holographic images in star wars. What time pads allow Clank to do is record upto a minute of movement and then the holograph repeatedly plays out that action, letting you do somethings else. This is used quite a bit in puzzles and I struggled to get my head around it at first as it isn't a simple system, upto 4 can be on the go at the same time and its hard to keep track of what the individual one is doing.
The usual array of weapons and upgrading remains with you now being able to upgrade the handeld weapons as well as Ratchets ship, although you never get into much combat to make it worth upgrading the ship. In terms of handheld weapons you now have "Constructo weapons" in 3 areas, pistol, shotgun and bomb. These weapons can be built up and modified in numerous ways and offers a more individual experience when playing through, some of the designs and styles you can make are really cool and make you want to change the weapn around to see what other looks it has.
New weapons to the series include spikes which can be thrown on the ground to electrocute close by enemies, a shockwave weapon where an alien screams out and breaks anything within range. Finally there is the dynamo of doom which makes use of the sixasis, it's a big ball of energy which you guide around the level and is suitably menacing for clearing big groups.

As you travel through the game you are shown well designed levels in a multitude of areas such as , deserts, jungles, canyons, mines and futuristic citys to name a few. This gives a grand sense of scale to the game and feels as though you are going on a big journey across the universe, you actually get to travel to the great clock at one point, which is situated right at the centre of the universe.
Birds flying and plants blowing in the wind give a sense of realism and environment and lets you feel like you are part of something bigger than just your own story.

The combat is as smooth and exciting as the previous titles and keeps the same destroy and collect mechanics, you do find yourself battling only a handful of enemies throughout the game and as you notice this more and more it's a little annoying.

The contols are easy to pick up and get used to meaning it is fun for any ages to get involved, all the usual button combinations are in this like R1 to shoot and X to jump. The responce is really good and things happen almost instantly, whats more is the games camera manages to hold the 3rd person perspective well and doesn't continually lead you off edges.

The game has a nice polish over the whole design, it's all bright and textured with vibrant colours. The character designs are the same but the environments are re-worked and looking better than ever.
Cut-scenes are funny as well as informative, with my favorite use being when you get a new weapon. Unboxing it gives you a video from the makers , Grummelnet, and these are hilarious as it mixes wit and information about how to use it.

The same voice actors are in this game so it has a good continuity from the previous titles, one thing I would of liked was more of a soundtrack, as it meant the game lacked a little added atmosphere at times.
The combat and noise of weapons is clear and exciting, drawing you into the game as the fighting becomes more ferocious. Explosions are suitably loud and feel as though they have an impact, the noise of jets flying overhead isn't too shabby either.

A good 30-40 hours available for collecting everything and seeing all their is to offer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 11 January 2014
not played or watched it myself but know they all mad on it 16 11 and 7year old equally love it so i would recommend
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 27 September 2013
for me this is the most exiting game from the future series. the game its improving every year so i dont see hoe it can v
be a bad game.
i waited for this game for years but i didn't have a PS3
i'll recommend this game to any player ..... it does worth
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on 23 March 2012
after not having playing the ratchet and clank games in a while last one was tools of destruction in 07 i got back in playing a crack in time and having seeing the improvement from the last games i was shocked the graphics were amazing especially the cinematic scene the jokes are still funny if not funnier the gameplay is still the same but thats not a bad thing we have new weapons and gadgets fun boss battles free roam in space first time ever and a lot of bolts and other fun collectibles to collect which we can use to how advantage and a amazing storie which pulls you in overall,
graphics 10/10
gameplay 10/10
story 10/10
collectibles 10/10
nothing bad to say about this game perfect 5 stars 10/10 must buy for anyone
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Ratchet & Clank: Quest for Booty [PS3]
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