**Ratchet and Clank: All for One, PS3**
As a Playstation Plus member I often get to enjoy the benefits of this membership in the form of downloading free games each month, and we're not just talking demos or trial games here, these are full games! Sometimes the games are rubbish but other times they are great, back in November when I first joined Playstation Plus the free game of the month was Ratchet and Clank: All for One.
Ratchet and Clank: All for One was originally released on the PS3 in October 2011 and is available to buy both in the shops with the usual game disc, box and instructions or as a download from the Playstation Store through your PS3 console. Usually the disadvantage of the download version is that you don't get an instruction manual, however with Ratchet and Clank: All for One there is an option to view the manual on the game screen.
As I have the download version of the game I had to install this game before I could play, this was a simple process and the speed of your installation will depend on your internet speed. At the time when I downloaded this game our internet was stupidly slow and it took ages for the file to download, I remember getting rather frustrated as I simply wanted to play! Yes, I know, I'm a big kid! Once downloaded the game had to install its settings which took around another 5ish minutes to complete and then I was finally ready to play.
**Ratchet and Clank: All for One**
Meet Ratchet: A cute Lombax who is currently on his way to an awards ceremony with his sidekicks Clank and Qwark. Once at the ceremony they find out they have been tricked into coming to the ceremony and the city of Luminopolis is under attack from Z'Grute. Being the action superheroes that they are Ratchet and his team must fight their way through tons of minions and track down and defeat Z'Grute. This is where you, the player, come into it, you will need to jump into the game as either Ratchet or one of his team and work together to progress from the bright lights of the city through many dark and sometimes quite creepy lands to find and defeat the attacker. Along your way you will need to collect bolts which you can use to purchase and upgrade weapons. If you play the game as Ratchet you will always have your sidekick Clank with you to help you along the way. There are parts of the game which require you both to do an action, these parts can be frustrating as Clank often jumps in and kind of takes over but on the whole Clank is good to have as he will always be ready to defeat enemies and help out when under attack.
When the game first starts you are shown the usual title screens and then taken to the main menu. The main menu offers a variety of choices:
Offline or Online: Offline and Online modes are very similar to each other with regards to the layouts of the levels and the only difference really is whether you prefer to be playing alone or with other people. Personally I have tried both and I prefer offline as firstly it is quicker to begin playing as I don't need to wait for other people to join the game and also because I can take my time and feel no pressure of not to do something stupid, if I want to jump off a ledge then so be it! One thing I do like about the Online mode is that you cannot chat with other players, I think this is good as it lets younger players play safely without parents and guardians having to worry too much! With both online and offline modes you will play exactly the same game and the same levels.
Profile: In the Profile area you can check your progress on the games Trophies and how many skill points you have earned. In all honesty I never really used this area at all other than clicking on it to see what it is.
Options: This area is where you can change the settings of the game to suit your preferences, things like controls, sound effects and music can all be changed here.
Extras: As it sounds, this is all of the extra bits. If you feel like viewing the credits for the game, the cinematics or the concept art then this is the place you should go to. Personally I don't find viewing these kind of things that interesting so I haven't really spent a great deal of time in this area but some may enjoy it.
Ratchet and Clank: All for One has a multiplayer mode, both in the form of online multiplayer as I mentioned earlier and also offline multiplayer where you can play with your friends at home. In all multiplayer modes there is no split screen as you are working together, so you will all be within the same area. I like this as I often find split screens take away a lot of the fun as you cannot see what is coming. I've only played offline multiplayer a couple of times as my partner isn't really into games so I usually end up playing alone.
**Is It a Smooth Player which Sounds Good? **
The graphics in the game are very smooth and the game itself is very bright, colourful and crispy-clear. The loading time between levels and scenes isn't too long so I don't find myself getting frustrated between levels. The sound in the game is also very good, the background music is mainly a track which gives you an image of adventures, exploration and a hero mission, which is basically what this game is. The sounds effects are all suited to the game and I would say my only real complaint is that the catchphrases of the characters are quite limited and therefore they become very repetitive very quickly.
**Playstation Network Trophies**
Ratchet and Clank: All for One supports the Playstation Network Trophies. There are a total of 45 trophies to collect. The trophies vary in difficulty, a large amount of them are won by simply playing through the game whereas other require you to complete certain parts of a level perfectly or without taking any damage, these are quite hard and unless you are a games expert you will need to play through the levels a few times. There are a few trophies for collecting items, these will come as you progress through the game and replay certain areas so all in all there is a nice mix of easy and hard ones.
**Price & Availability**
When I downloaded this game it was free to Playstation Plus members however I think that it has now been taken off the download list and you will need to pay to download it. I'm not sure of the price as for download as it shows up as "purchased" when I click on it. The game can also be purchased in disc format and a quick online search tells me it is £17.50 on Amazon.
**A Hero Among Games? **
Ratchet and Clank: All for One is certainly one of my favourite games on my PS3, I had never played the Ratchet and Clank games before this so I didn't know what to expect, but as a result of playing this I have since bought the Trilogy and the newer release Q-Force as for me, Ratchet and Clank seems to be a very enjoyable game. I like the fact that it is light-hearted and fun but yet it is still a challenge and has a good story to the game as well.
I do have one complaint with Ratchet and Clank: All for One and that is that it is really short! I completed the main storyline of the game within a week so unless you are someone who wants to replay lots of areas in order to complete your trophy collection then this game may be a bit too short or repetitive for you. Personally I am happy to replay parts of the game so this isn't too much of a problem for me but at the same time I would have liked to have played a few more levels too.
The controls of the game are quite easy to pick up and in general the game is quite easy to really get into and enjoy.
I will be giving Ratchet and Clank: All for One 4 out of 5 stars with one being lost for how incredibly short the main game is.
Thanks for reading :)
Unlike the other games in the Ratchet and Clank series, All 4 One focuses on four player co-op mode (both online and offline) which allows players to drop in and drop out when they want. The game can also be played solo with an AI controlled character. A player can take the role of one of the four main characters (hence the title A4O) of the game: Ratchet, Clank, Qwark and Doctor Nefarious.
Ratchet and Clank have decided to go into retirement. Captain Qwark is now the new Galactic President... Well that can't possibly go wrong can it? (There are a couple of "well I didn't vote for him" jokes throughout) Quark is having an award ceremony for himself and decides to invite his old buddies Ratchet and Clank to escort him. During the ceremony, our three hero's old nemesis Nefarious appears and unfreezes a creature which then turns against him and forces Nefarious into an alliance with the trio. After they triumph, ratchet, Clank, Qwark and Nefarious are all kidnapped and once again forced to work together. It has the great laugh out loud moments that you'd expect from an Ratchet & Clank game from start to finish, even if the plot isn't particularly memorable.
The game plays just like all the other Ratchet and Clank games, but it has a fixed camera and a very linear story. It still has a wide range of fun and imaginative weapons (such as one that turns your enemies into pigs), weird and wonderful characters, oversized bosses - everything you'd expect from an Insomniac game. The bosses are all massive, and utilize the co-op system in a very creative and well designed way.
It looks pretty much the same as previous Ratchet and Clank games but with slightly scaled back graphics - this is to cope with having four online players with minimum disruption to the game play (such as lag or frame rate drops). It's not a particularly noticeable difference, especially since
All of the main voice actors are back to reprise their roles, and once again nail everything. The music is good but nothing special.
I'd definitely recommend All 4 One for some great co-op fun, both offline and online.
Ratchet and Clank is an extremely popular and successful 3D platform game developed by Insomniac Games exclusively to the Sony Playstation system.
I have played through all of the Ratchet and Clank series, and I would say the latest in the series is not the best. As always the graphics are crisp, the game looks nice and colourful and it has a fun and compelling story line. However, the gameplay can get a bit tedious and repetitive. For example, there are many aspects of the game which require you to be playing multiplayer in order to complete or explore it to the full extent, and this can get quite annoying when playing single player. Also, alot of the enemies seem to take an age to die, so you literally have to sit there with your finger on the same button jumping around for about 10 minutes at a time. Your fingers end up numb from holiding down the fire and jump buttons for large periods of time.
Despite all this, Ratchet and Clank all 4 one is the first in the series to have a local multiplayer option, and this is really what makes the game. It is possible to have up to four players simultaneously in a new co-operative gameplay, both online and locally, and it is great fun to play with your friends, much better than playing it on your own.
To sum up, this game is very enjoyable, looks beautiful and works well as a local multipayer game. However it is nowhere near as good as Ratchet and Clank: Locked and Loaded, or A Crack in Time.
Network compatible: Yes
Age guide: Universal
Playtime: Under 10 hours
Ratchet and Clank return, (once again) for another intergalactic adventure. The universe once again finds itself in peril and its up to Ratchet and Clank who had quite happily retired from the hero business to save the day as usual. Dr. Nefarious and Captain (now president) Quark also come along for the ride but this time Nefarious is working with the heroes to save the day. Perhaps he isn't so bad after all. When a massive war ship looms it falls to the four to track down its creator and find a way to put a stop to it before its too late.
Created by Insomniac games, this is not the first outing for Ratchet and Clank. After many other outings on the PS3 for me the formula is becoming a little tired. Shoot some monsters, buy new weapons, shoot some more monsters with new weapons, travel to new planet, shoot some more monsters. What first attracted me to the franchise was the comedy aspect of it. Ratchet and Clank has always been a series that is able to raise a couple of easy laughs whether through slapstick or clever writing however this time around the jokes come sparsely and when they do, I found myself wishing they hadn't bothered. That's not to say the series has completely lost its charm. Every now and again I found myself tittering at a funny quip. However the series has done little since its beginnings to throw anything new into the mix. It all feels a bit samey and hence I found myself finishing it all too quickly.
One new addition though is the ability to choose between the four characters or to have others join in with you as you play through the levels. This makes a change from being stuck with Ratchet throughout the whole game but on the flip side if you choose one of the other characters they don't really have anything new to offer.
Its perhaps a blessing that you are given the option of playing with a friend as I found that the artificial intelligence here when playing on the single player campaign left much to be desired. Quite often I found myself standing around wondering where my companion had disappeared to only to find they had plummetted to their death down a chasm. Perhaps more frustratingly when needed to push a button I found Clank to be exceedingly unhelpful, twiddling his thumbs while I desperately jumped from one button to the next before the time ran out when in other instances Clank jumps on the buttons for you, as is the point.
The end of the game does offer a surprise twist which I won't ruin for you but needless to say, I didn't see it coming. At least the developers did put some effort in when putting pen to paper on this one. The main story campaign will at most take about ten hours to complete or less but there is more available to play online with others to drag it out a little more. Skill points are awared for completing certain objectives so there is reason to play through a level again but for me I found myself not really caring if I got them or not as there isn't really anything to gain. From collecting gold bolts in the levels and completing certain puzzles you are able to unlock new skins for your characters.
The ability to play in 3D also offers a new addition to the series graphically but that's only if you have a 3D capable TV to play it on.
My greatest annoyance while playing this game was the distance between save points while playing. In the past it has been clear where autosave was taking place and I always clearly knew where I would be starting off from again the next time. However in All 4 One I was never certain exactly when it was saving but it didn't seem to be that often.
The simplicity of the gameplay means that you can pretty much pick up this game and know straight away what it is you need to do, especially if you have played before. The furry lombax will certainly be popular with the young ones and the variety of weapons on offer with increasingly comical effects will be enough to keep them happy. My particular favourites were the critter strike which turns your enemies into little piggies and later on bloodthirsty warhogs and Mr. Zurkon who disposes of your enemies for you, leaving you free to take in the scenery.
Frankly, though the formula has worked in the past I think for the next installment, and I'm sure there will be one, Insomniac are going to have to try a little harder to pull something new out of the bag. The ability to control time in the last game A Crack in Time seems to have been completely disregared, however this was something that was quite different and brought a new dynamic to gameplay.