Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One
ESRB Rating: Everyone 10 and Older
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Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One
Platform: PlayStation 3
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment America, Inc.
Developer: Insomniac Games
Style(s): 3D Platform
Synopsis: Sony's silly sci-fi series returns to PlayStation 3 with all-new weapons and cooperative action for up to four players. Players must work together as Ratchet, Clank, Qwark, and Dr. Nefarious to escape from a powerful machine on a mysterious world. Each character offers distinct skills and co-op weapons, from the burning Pyroblaster and bulldozing Blitzer to the freezing Frost Cannon and flailing Arc Lasher. The drop-in, drop-out cooperative play can either be experienced locally or online via PlayStation Network. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide
Package Contents: 16-page Instruction Manual
Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One is a strange release. It's not your typical Ratchet & Clank game, with stripped-down features, linear environments, and a focus on shorter action sequences. Yet it also isn't a typical four-player game, either, with "forced" cooperative elements that lack ingenuity and uncharacteristically sluggish pacing for an Insomniac Games title. The game has you and up to three friends progressing through nine futuristic worlds, each divided into a series of smaller regions. The environments are extremely confining in All 4 One, filled with narrow corridors and loaded with crates to smash for the currency needed to purchase new weapons or upgrades at vendor stations. While each area offers various objectives, there's no possibility of missing them since you can only go one way down each stage. You'll do typical Ratchet & Clank things, like grind rails, swing across chasms using the hook shot, and acquire a variety of offbeat weapons. You'll also have to perform silly exercises in teamwork, such as smashing pressure pads together, rotating platforms in unison, and having one person fetch an item while others pull a lever to remove its protective barrier. Again, these "puzzles" feel more like busywork than something added to enhance the game's playability. Players will also have to combine their shots on certain enemies to destroy them, or fling their teammates on specially marked bull's-eye targets to advance. Instead of giving players the freedom to do what they want while working together as a team, the cramped levels <i>force</i> them to cooperate just to get anything done. Adding to the frustration are frequent, lengthy cinematics that can't be skipped and some tedious platform sequences that are only challenging due to the fixed camera perspective. At the end of each world is a boss battle that will typically require aiming at specific points on its body as well as jumping to avoid damage from incoming fire, electrified floors, and similar dangers. While the game supports online cooperative play, it is also a game that can be played alone, with the computer taking control of a teammate. This is actually the preferable way to play, as having four characters on the same screen is more confusing than entertaining. All 4 One's limited scope will not appeal to fans of previous titles in the series, and the cooperative elements won't appeal to those expecting the fast-paced play mechanics of games like Gauntlet, Contra, or New Super Mario Bros. Wii. All 4 One simply isn't up to the developer's consistently high standards and ranks as one of the most disappointing Ratchet & Clank games yet released. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide
the game requires Joystick/Gamepad.