Giant Bomb Review

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Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty Review

3
  • PS3N

Ratchet & Clank: Quest for Booty is a decent diversion for the price, but will make you long for the next full installment in the series.

Man, I really hope you like pirates and robots, because Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty is, if nothing else, a vehicle for as much campy robot-pirate humor as a downloadable title can hold. Much like your Ikea bookshelf, you'll find that Quest for Booty looks great for the price, but doesn't really contain the love and craftsmanship of its higher-priced counterparts.

Quest for Booty begins soon after the events of Tools of Destruction, the previous PlayStation 3 installment of the series. Clank has been not-so-forcibly kidnapped by the Zoni, a mysterious race of robot that have some kind of greater plan for our little, metallic friend. This basically sets the scene for Quest for Booty, as Ratchet and his ladyfriend, Talwyn, search for clues regarding Clank's whereabouts and dig a little deeper into this whole Zoni situation. Along the way you'll encounter some old pirate acquaintances, some new pirate masterminds, pirate ghosts, pirate ships, bats, and pirates. Also? Pirates.

While this sounds all well and good, the story in Quest for Booty does little to flesh out the universe. Players that didn't make it through Tools of Destruction will be dropped into a world full of undeveloped characters and a plot that seems to revolve more around setting up campy pirate jokes than continuing the story arc from the previous game. As someone who thoroughly enjoyed Tools of Destruction, I found much of the charm to be missing and the whole experience to be a little hollow.

Did we mention there are pirates?
For me, the Ratchet & Clank series has always been about platforming, exploring, and powering-up your collection of weapons. While Quest for Booty certainly delivers on the platforming, the other two elements come up a bit short. There are really no incentives to explore the somewhat limited areas of the game, save for the few weapon upgrades hidden throughout. There are no golden bolts or collectibles to find, which is probably for the best, since this is strictly a linear affair and you won't be able to travel to previous locations at will. Finding enough bolts, Ratchet & Clank's currency, to buy the couple of items you're presented with is also a non-issue and doesn't require anything more than tearing into the crates and baddies presented along the course of the game.

With subtitles like Up Your Arsenal, Going Commando and Tools of Destruction, the Ratchet series has a pretty well-established reputation for delivering the goods when it comes to weaponry. Quest for Booty eschews the gun collecting and instead, in true abilitease fashion, starts you off with a set number of guns that you subsequently lose and then recover throughout the course of the game. This strips away an essential layer of the gameplay, leaving only the sticky residue of a half-hearted weapon powering-up mechanic. With enough use, each weapon will increase in power, up to a maximum level of five. Considering that each gun already starts on level three, the gun leveling doesn't require much effort. On top of that, you'll be hard-pressed to find a real need to use more than two or three items from your limited arsenal. Finally, as if to make the entire process even less meaningful, you'll keep the weapon's earned experience when you die. This is standard for the series, but the new levels come so quickly that you don't really get a sense of accomplishment when you've finally maxed out your weapons.

This is one good-looking downloadable game.
Making your way through the levels mostly involves either basic platforming or some confined combat situations. Everything is pretty solid, but I didn't encounter anything that made me feel like I was the prince of the double jump either. I didn't really feel a sense of danger or tension, except for the grind rail portions, which offer the most thrilling sequences in the relatively short experience. You'll also discover that your wrench has now mysteriously been upgraded to include the ability to remotely tether items and manipulate them. Many of the platforming puzzles throughout the game make good use of this new mechanic, and it's something that I hope to see more of in future iterations of the series.

The presentation is amazing for a downloadable title. The graphics, voice acting and animation are all comparable to its big-budget brother. You won't be overwhelmed with the variety in the enemies and environments, but what you do encounter looks great and seems to fit very nicely into the universe. The music is probably the only thing about the package that seems to not measure up, and it can get somewhat repetitive. Imagine taking a road trip with a guy who can only remember the first five bars to the Pirates of the Caribbean theme song. I was also hoping for a few more cutscenes, but considering the abbreviated length of the game, I can't really find fault in their absence.

I guess Quest for Booty just feels like the Aladdin 2 of Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction. It has all the same elements as the original, but it just doesn't deliver the charm and appeal. Of course, it is an intentionally shorter game at a markedly lower price, so it's not unexpected that some compromises would have to be made. In the end, Ratchet and Clank Future: Quest for Booty delivers a quarter of a game at a quarter of the price, and ultimately, you're only getting a quarter of the entertainment. Vinny Caravella on Google+
58 Comments
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Posted by bucky

like the ikea bookshelf analogy

Posted by Whisperkill
Posted by MattBodega

Another great review, Vinny!
Hopefully, those editorial jerks will let you get your hands on more than just so-so fughting games and downloadable stuff from here on out!

Posted by Lockeyness

Excellent review, Vinny!  "The Aladdin 2 of Ratchet & Clank" is a great box quote!

Posted by Zergvasion

Fair score for a fair game.
Good work, Vinny!

Posted by Mourne

"Aladdin 2 of Ratchet & Clank"--amazing!

Great work, Vinny. Keep it up!

Posted by SpikeDelight

Cool cartoon Vinny! Also great review!

Posted by Ben_H

Good thinking with the bookshelf analogy!

Online
Posted by TheGTAvaccine

Great review Vinny.

Posted by carzy

good review, but shitty game

Posted by x_iNcReDiMe_x

Good review, but I can't help but think that the ending was a little harsh, even though you gave the game a decent score.

Posted by Hyperesthesiac

Really great review.

Posted by Snipes424

Hmm... I don't get some of these reviews (not just this one from giantbomb) They will list all these things that they loved about the game and then say that they wanted to play more of the game, and since its only 3-4 hours they only give it a score in the 70s.  It seems like to me that these reviewers want to play a full $60.00 game for $15.00, and it's pretty selfish.

I don't believe that Quest for Booty deserves 10s, but after actually playing it, it has to be one of the most underscored games this year.

Posted by zhinse

Its funny how supportive the users are on this site when it comes to a review. It's a great review though. I wanted to buy it, but i never played a Rachet game before, so i never decided it. 

Posted by RenegadeSaint

Sounds about right to me.

Posted by Erdie

It's got to be hard to rate a miniature version of a game that everyone's so used to being an epic adventure.  It still looks amazing for $15.

Posted by hungrynun

The Ikea metaphor was amazing.

Posted by Dizzyhippos

The thing I am wondering is why they didnt just make this the start of the next game, I hope this dosnt mean insomniac is going to take forever for the next full game

Posted by PLWolf

dizzyhippos,
 They have already said the next Ratchet will be out next Fall. ;)

Posted by Jackel2072

Yeah i think i will be skipping this game just dont really have any desire for Ratchet and Clank at the moment. Good review Vinny Thank You!

Posted by Pathos

Wow, Vinny is great at reviewing games. Excellent review! I hope you review some more games.

Posted by fluxbit

Hey, Vinny, Ratchet wants me to pass along a message:

She's not my special lady, she's my f*****g lady friend. I'm just helping her conceive, man!

Posted by Acid08

Eh I don't really feel this game was average in any way. The R&C gameplay is still top of the game for its genre.

I felt this game was much more focused and that the pacing was incredible. The game gives you a lot of the different gameplay there is in a Ratchet game in a short amount of time. Each area is pretty unique. I especially liked the underground caverns.

I think a lot of people were expect ToD 2 with this game but it was never positioned as that. It's a short epilogue  to ToD with the next full game coming next week. It was a blast for the 3 hours it lasted and I can't wait for the next game.

Posted by Scooper

I really like Vinny reviewing stuff, it's really fresh reading.

Posted by Thermonuclear

The biggest problem I had with this game was the fact its about a year till the next installment. The shortness wouldnt have bothered me so much if the next one wasnt that far away but a year, that sucks. Only thing that would make me happy now is knowing that the next one is infact a proper full game and not just a little short episode like this.

Posted by zophar53

Glad to see you're doing more reviews Vinny.  This was a really good one, keep it up!  I pretty much agreed with everything you said, this feels kind of like Ratchet and Clank Lite more than anything else.  A bit of a teaser game.

Posted by calf_exercises

great review vinny, I really enjoy reading your work. Its ashame that we have been missing out until recently. Keep up the awesome work man!

Posted by toxicEnchiliada

YEAAHHHHHHHHHH VINNNNNNYYYYYY

Posted by Dizzyhippos

TheWolf

as Duke Nukem forever and TF2 prove that date dosnt mean anything untill the game is out

Posted by Ax

I actually thought Aladdin 2 did a great job recapturing the fun of the first movie.  Just saying is all.

Posted by Light_Geiger

too short and no replayability (insomniac games not putting in a challenge mode?! weird) and no bonus for playing Tools of destruction (small gripe, but still....)

though good while it lasts....

Posted by piecat

Great review, but i really don't agree with it. I thought Quest for Booty was highly successful in its attempt to offer a small, shorter game that would give gamers at least something until the next full ratchet game, for at least a little while. I also though the pacing was perfect. But hey, its your opinion and i can respect that. Plus I'm sort of a ratchet fanboy :P

Posted by Gump

Cameraman, editor and reviewer at the same time! ¡WOW!
Vinny ROCKS!

Posted by Drebin_893
Posted by Kohe321

Vinny you write great reviews! think I'll get this game, I loved tools of destruction.

Posted by get2sammyb

Really good review Vinny. I totally agree.

Posted by V_Ben

Great review

Posted by insanegamer

can't wait to play the game

Posted by Dante_the_Jedi

A good review, think I may get the game, but it will not be at the top of my list. 

Posted by slowpantz

good game  but your review is right

Posted by AaronBelfast

Great review as always.

Posted by SleepyDoughnut

Vinny, how long did it take to think of that Ikea metaphor because I cant stop thinking how amazing it is

Posted by Super_King

"Along the way you'll encounter some old pirate acquaintances, some new pirate masterminds, pirate ghosts, pirate ships, bats, and pirates. Also? Pirates."

Vinny rules

Posted by ElectricHaggis

Great review Vinny, keep it up.

Posted by BertieWooster

Clearly at the head of the class when it comes to ... reviews.

Posted by lord_canti

but arnt we all....on a quest...for booty

Posted by MagusMaleficus

This is already out? How did I miss that? Wow.

Posted by nickystixx

I agree with Snipes424. It delivers for  $15.


Posted by Emandudeguyperson

You guys (Jeff, Vinny, Brad, Ryan) are great reviewers, GameSpot is a crappy mess right now, you guys are the only ones I can trust.

Posted by Derios

Man Vinny great analogy.

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