Ratchet & Clank Collection Review

Ratchet & Clank Collection (Available exclusively on PlayStation 3)
ESRB Rating: E10+
Number of Players: 1 to 12
Genre: Action Platformer
Publisher: SCEA
Developer: Idol Minds Digital Entertainment/Insomniac Games
Release Date: August 28th, 2012
PSN: Online Multiplayer

Parent Talk: Crude humor, some mild animated blood, and cartoon violence are about all you’re going to see in this compilation. While the ESRB rates the series E10+, I’ve always found this a series anyone can get into, and should.

Plays Like: If you don’t know how Ratchet and Clank plays by now, what’s wrong with you? The dynamic duo have become mainstays in the PlayStation universe for years, and are adored by millions around the globe. These are action platformers at their best. You run, gun and jump your way across the cosmos picking up incredible weapons along the way.

Review Basis: This is another game in the Collection series that Sony started this summer, however unlike the others this is the very first time all three games have been remastered in HD so I took my time looking at all the changes. I am also giving this set a proper review as it deserves it!

Original Review: Project C.O.E. wasn’t around when the first two games in the series were released, but Justin Simson did review Up your Arsenal, which you can read right here: http://www.projectcoe.com/sony/games/r&c3.html?var1=sc3.

The Ratchet & Clank series is one of the very best the PlayStation family of consoles can call its own. These are the original three games that started the legacy, and should be played by any self-respecting gamer. They are absolutely outstanding videogames, and this collection only makes them better by bringing them to a new console and therefore an entirely new generation of gamers can experience the magic.

The Great:

If there’s one element that has withstood the test of time it has got to be the weapons. They are some of the most creative and awe-inspiring weapons you will ever have the honor of using. From transforming your enemies into sheep to shooting small nuclear blasts, and the mighty Rip You a New One (R.Y.N.O.), the Ratchet & Clank series has become the best place to mess around with incredible weapons. This collection only highlights that fact.

The Good:

+ All three games look superb in 1080p. The developers were smart and didn’t rework the textures, instead focusing on sharpening the colors, which go a long way in making these worlds overflow with life. They hold a candle to the Future titles, but still run at 60 frame-per-second and have never looked so sharp before.

+ As the series progresses each game becomes better than the last. By the time you hit Up your Arsenal I doubt anyone will go back to the original. The weapons, environments and humor only improve as the series aged.

+ Hands-down some of the most hilarious games ever made. It truly saddens me that Insomniac is no longer working exclusively with Sony because I fear the magic of this series might be lost forever.

+ Mission variety, online multiplayer (from Up your Arsenal) and everything else from the original trilogy is back and just as fun as it was years ago. I don’t remember having this much fun with the series, which proves they have aged perfectly.

The So-So:

+/- While I didn’t test the 3D aspect, I know that 3D mode downgrades the resolution to 720p and drops the framerate to 30 frame-per-second. While it’s great to have the 3D option, it’s not so hot losing the super smooth gameplay.

+/- I don’t know if I’m a better player now, but I found the challenge to be a little less than I remember it. These games were originally created for everyone and that sort of shows. That said, if you’re going for all three platinum trophies, you’re up for a lengthy and challenging ride.

The Bad:

– Any bugs or other issues that were in the originals have mostly found there way in here, but those are few and far between.

The Ugly:

FMV cutscenes remain in 4:3 aspect ratio and haven’t been updated in the least, which is a little jarring, but understandable.

The Lowdown:

You might think I’m insane for giving a collection this high of a score, but this isn’t just any collection. Sony has brought together three of the very best videogames ever created. Insomniac is an outstanding developer and all these years later their flagship series remains just as relevant today as it was when it first shipped. If you consider yourself a true gamer, this is one game you must have in your collection.

Final Score: 9.5/10

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