Retro Review: Ratchet and Clank 2

Posted by RivaOni (24 posts) -

Now before I go ahead. I'd like to point out that I run a website (and write for it obviously) called bitparade. For the past few weeks I've been playing games that I've got gathered in my rather expansive (and rather random) collection and then putting up a review of whichever title I've been playing that week onto the site each weekend. I'll be putting these Retro Reviews up (even though PS2 isn't strictly retro) on here from now on and hopefully show off any writing talent that I may or may not have. If you're interested in reading anything else by myself or one of our other two writers, head on over to http://www.bitparade.co.uk.
 
So anyway, my retro review of Ratchet and Clank 2.
 
 Its probably an odd place to be introduced to the Ratchett and Clank series, but a spell of boredom and a lack of drive to play something that fits into my normally played catergory of games (so racing and JRPG then...) had me dig this out, I'd always heard good things about the series and this is the only title I have available in my collection of games, so Ratchet and Clank 2 (or Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando or Ratchett and Clank: Locked and Loaded depending upon where you live) is this weeks "Retro Review".


I'll happily admit to being a fan of Insomniac Games' Spyro the Dragon games on the original PlayStation so its a wonder that its taken me this long to play a game from this series (the first title was released eight years ago!). Now that I have though I'm glad I did. Insomniac have taken everything they did succesfully with the li'l purple dragon, ramped that up a notch and thrown guns galore at the gameplay. It's odd saying this so long after its release but it really does feel like a platform game designed for the Modern Warfare generation, and I mean that in the best possible way.

Visuallly its still pretty damn good considering that this is a PS2 game, there's not a blocky texture or poorly designed item to be seen and the worlds the game has you visiting are richly populated and vastly different to each other resulting in each new location being a genuine treat. Okay so it still visits the staple Platformer style locations of "swamp place" "ice place" "fire place" "big fat futuristic city" but come on, if you didn't expect that then you were just being delusional. The characters are all fun, especially the relationship between the two main leads which provides many moments that will raise a smile.

The only criticsm I can possibly aim at Ratchet and Clank 2 is that sometimes the difficulty is cranked up a little too far, usually in the form of there being too many enemies, and whilst this was only a mild iritation (and no where near as difficult as some sections of Nintendo's Mario games) it could provide too much for someone much younger or less experienced with games than I and detract from them enjoying the rest of the game. No ones asking them to make the game stupidly easy, and in all honesty it makes overcoming those situations quite satisfying, but a bit o f middle ground would of been nicer especially as the spikes come at almost random moments where the level beforehand was fairly easy and the sections immediately afterwards are a breeze. Admittedly most of these problems are resolved as your weapons upgrade, but sometimes it involves alot of dying in order to have the firepower to progress.

As a complete package though, Ratchet and Clank 2 is incredibly entertaining, suprisingly so for a game of its age, I really mean it when it shows very few rough edges in any of the key area's we look at when playing games and its only the mild irritation of a few poorly chosen difficulty spikes that detract from the overall experience.

#1 Posted by RivaOni (24 posts) -

Now before I go ahead. I'd like to point out that I run a website (and write for it obviously) called bitparade. For the past few weeks I've been playing games that I've got gathered in my rather expansive (and rather random) collection and then putting up a review of whichever title I've been playing that week onto the site each weekend. I'll be putting these Retro Reviews up (even though PS2 isn't strictly retro) on here from now on and hopefully show off any writing talent that I may or may not have. If you're interested in reading anything else by myself or one of our other two writers, head on over to http://www.bitparade.co.uk.
 
So anyway, my retro review of Ratchet and Clank 2.
 
 Its probably an odd place to be introduced to the Ratchett and Clank series, but a spell of boredom and a lack of drive to play something that fits into my normally played catergory of games (so racing and JRPG then...) had me dig this out, I'd always heard good things about the series and this is the only title I have available in my collection of games, so Ratchet and Clank 2 (or Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando or Ratchett and Clank: Locked and Loaded depending upon where you live) is this weeks "Retro Review".


I'll happily admit to being a fan of Insomniac Games' Spyro the Dragon games on the original PlayStation so its a wonder that its taken me this long to play a game from this series (the first title was released eight years ago!). Now that I have though I'm glad I did. Insomniac have taken everything they did succesfully with the li'l purple dragon, ramped that up a notch and thrown guns galore at the gameplay. It's odd saying this so long after its release but it really does feel like a platform game designed for the Modern Warfare generation, and I mean that in the best possible way.

Visuallly its still pretty damn good considering that this is a PS2 game, there's not a blocky texture or poorly designed item to be seen and the worlds the game has you visiting are richly populated and vastly different to each other resulting in each new location being a genuine treat. Okay so it still visits the staple Platformer style locations of "swamp place" "ice place" "fire place" "big fat futuristic city" but come on, if you didn't expect that then you were just being delusional. The characters are all fun, especially the relationship between the two main leads which provides many moments that will raise a smile.

The only criticsm I can possibly aim at Ratchet and Clank 2 is that sometimes the difficulty is cranked up a little too far, usually in the form of there being too many enemies, and whilst this was only a mild iritation (and no where near as difficult as some sections of Nintendo's Mario games) it could provide too much for someone much younger or less experienced with games than I and detract from them enjoying the rest of the game. No ones asking them to make the game stupidly easy, and in all honesty it makes overcoming those situations quite satisfying, but a bit o f middle ground would of been nicer especially as the spikes come at almost random moments where the level beforehand was fairly easy and the sections immediately afterwards are a breeze. Admittedly most of these problems are resolved as your weapons upgrade, but sometimes it involves alot of dying in order to have the firepower to progress.

As a complete package though, Ratchet and Clank 2 is incredibly entertaining, suprisingly so for a game of its age, I really mean it when it shows very few rough edges in any of the key area's we look at when playing games and its only the mild irritation of a few poorly chosen difficulty spikes that detract from the overall experience.

#2 Posted by blazerx9x (648 posts) -

that game was epic, still one of those games that made me want to buy a PS2 again

#3 Edited by GunstarRed (4730 posts) -

Hmmm R&C2 is incredibly easy, probably the second easiest of the retail games. I played 1 and 2 within a week and  burnt through the second one  in just over a day. The final boss ban be beaten literally by strafe jumping in a circle and holding down the fire button.  Which parts were so hard?
#4 Posted by RivaOni (24 posts) -
@marioncobretti: 
 
 I kept being overpowered by a swarm of enemies, my gun upgradedshortly after I decided to do something else band it wasn't a huge problem but could see it being so for someone else, just one of those things that can make or break a game for a certain type of person. With this being a review for a website I'd rather mention it than not and it probably sounds like a bigger issue than it really is in the above text. Rest assured I wasn't stumped for long, just got annoyed enough to swear at the game (I don't tend to swear alot if I can help it).
 
Glad I've not been flamed (thus far) for mentioning the website though, I'm honestly not here to promote the site, just join in with the community a bit, do some blogging and leave it at that. Just didn't want anyone to read this then stumble across the site with the article on and say one or the other is copied. :)
#5 Posted by sagesebas (2003 posts) -
@RivaOni: There was a bug or scratch in the game that never let me finish it, Beat the first and third one though and the first one still ranks as one of my favorite games
#6 Posted by Ashby (145 posts) -
@RivaOni:  
Nice review! I somehow missed these games when they first came out, but I've heard pretty great things about them. : )

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