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Japanese Ratchet ad is like totally kawaii

There's something adorable about the Japanese Ratchet. He's so much more energetic ... and, well, squeaky. But don't let his cute demeanor deceive you: he's still the same killing machine he always was. In this new Japanese ad for Size Matters (also known as Ratchet & Clank Gekitotsu! Dodeka Ginga no MiriMiri Gundan), Ratchet appears to encourage school boys to destroy their schools with WMDs. Oh, how adorable.

Continue reading Japanese Ratchet ad is like totally kawaii

Ratchet & Clank interactive strategy guide

Did you ever get stuck in Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters? Well, have no fear! Sony has just released an interactive guide for the entire game, and we have it right here. There's over 60 pages of inside info for your perusal: not only on how to beat the game, but find its elusive secrets as well.

Download for PC (18.1MB)
Download for Mac (25.1MB)

*Note: Please do NOT direct-link these files! Thanks.

Metareview: Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters

Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters just came out on PSP and a lot of gamers have high hopes for the title given the history of the series. We here at PSP Fanboy love Ratchet & Clank, but what about everyone else? It seems like most critics agreed with us, but let's see why:

  • IGN (90/100) "It's packed with fantastic single-player content, has a strong multiplayer element, boasts a great visual and thematic presentation, and excels with razor-sharp gameplay mechanics."
  • Yahoo! (100/100) "For the last two titles, the developers of Ratchet & Clank have done a wonderful job building full-featured multiplayer support into their games. Size Matters is arguably the best attemt to date. Although it only supports four players at a time, the maps and modes are meticulously build to wring the most out of multiplayer matches."
  • 1UP (70/100) "If you're looking for a game that matches the quality of the previous games in the Ratchet franchise...well, keep looking."

Not sure what game 1UP was playing, but they're the only one to even give the game anything close to that score, so if you're a fan I think you need to check out Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters.

Play Ratchet on custom firmware

Like many PSP owners, I like the added functionality of Dark_Alex's custom firmware. What I didn't like though was how Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters didn't work on my PSP because of it. Luckily, the fine folks at DCEmu have come up with a solution. Let me run you through it step by step, so you too can get Ratchet swinging his wrench on your custom firmware.

  • First, totally turn off your PSP (not sleep mode)
  • Now, hold down the right trigger and turn it back on
  • This will bring you to recovery menu where you can change several options
  • Configuration: Game folder homebrew (currently:3.XX Kernal), Use NO-UMD (currently:disabled), Fake region (currently: America), Free UMD region (currently:enabled)
  • Advanced configuration: Plain modules in UMD/ISO (currently:enabled)
  • CPU Speed: Speed in UMD/ISO (currently:266)
  • Plugins: All disabled

And that should do it. Now you can play the greatness that is Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters. Thanks again for the great fix DCEmu community!

PSP Fanboy review: Ratchet & Clank

My first draft of this review featured a lengthy introduction ... and then I deleted it all so I could get to the point: you must buy this game. Whether or not you've played a Ratchet game before, you'll find that the game's fantastic visuals, excellent presentation, and downright fun gameplay make it a must-have for any PSP owner. While the game certainly has some flaws, the overall experience of the game is above and beyond most PSP games. Not since Daxter has a game on Sony's handheld exhibited such polish.

Continue reading PSP Fanboy review: Ratchet & Clank

More Ratchet & Clank interviews than you can handle

Hope you're interested in Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters because GameTrailers has posted not one ... not two ... but SIX interviews from the game's developers. They discuss various elements of the game, from multiplayer to designing the game engine. See past the cut to get your dose of Ratchet & Clank and then make sure you come back at 12:01AM on February 12th to see PSP Fanboy's review of the game. The game releases on February 13th.

Continue reading More Ratchet & Clank interviews than you can handle

Hands-on: Ratchet & Clank's online multiplayer

I competed against various members of SCEA, High Impact Games, and other members of the press today in Rachet & Clank: Size Matters' Infrastructure multiplayer mode. Having become comfortable with the controls in single-player certainly helped the experience quite a bit, as I was raking up the kills, quickly becoming number one in the leaderboard (that position was unfortunately lost over time). The online interface is easy enough, and seems unchanged from the multiplayer beta that I participated in months ago. However, there were a few glitches in the process: some games were simply impossible to join, unless it was through the game's Quick Game option. Also, typing messages in the chat room is quite a troublesome burden, simply because of the game's reliance on the PSP's default on-screen keyboard. I found it quite easy to accidentally disconnect from a room while chatting, so I opted out altogether.

The actual online gameplay was smooth, and surprisingly responsive. There wasn't any noticeable lag, and the graphics were on par with the impressive single-player graphics. The weapons are varied, as they are in the story mode, and can be upgraded through secret power-ups scattered throughout the level. However, the variety in weapons reveals that the game might not be too well-balanced, as certain weapons easily outclass others. One game ended in quite a bit of frustration, due to a camping sniper. While these kind of problems are common with online multiplayer games, it was surprising, and somewhat distressing to see.

Also, each game is limited to four players. After an hour of play time, I have to admit that this simply isn't enough to enjoy the multiplayer potential. Levels seem slightly too large for only four players, especially in objective-based modes, where you will only have one partner. Personally, I found the objectives of Iron Lombax mode to be unclear. It would've been helpful to have more guidance to the next objective, a la Unreal Tournament.

Ratchet & Clank's online multiplayer is not going to redefine online gaming. However, it is still an impressive effort, especially for a portable system. It's nice to see the developers include such a solid, but imperfect, experience ... and have it playable worldwide via Infrastructure. You'll be able to log-in and fight when the game ships next week. Expect a complete PSP Fanboy review soon. And don't forget to read past the cut to see all the multiplayer modes available in the game.

Continue reading Hands-on: Ratchet & Clank's online multiplayer

PSP Fanboy hands-on: Ratchet & Clank

Sony recently sent me a copy of Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters to try out, and so far, I have to say I'm quite impressed. While you'll have to wait until our full review on February 13th to get all the gory details, I'll briefly describe the time I've spent in single player so far. Firstly, the game is quite a visual stunner, especially with the character models. Both Ratchet and Clank are nicely detailed, and they're animated stupendously. There's full voice acting in all the cutscenes which is a nice plus.

The levels themselves are fairly nice looking, and the framerate is very smooth. However, many areas feature some pretty bland textures. Ready at Dawn's Daxter seems to have better graphics, but that game didn't throw as many enemies and particles at you as this does.

The controls are easy to pick up, and although the camera system isn't the most intelligent, it gets the job done. Moving Ratchet around in the environment is easy enough, with the analog nub used for general movement, and the D-Pad used for strafing. You'll frequently switch between these two inputs during battle: it works very well, but may be counter-intuitive for some.

While the missions are a bit too long for my taste, the varied weapons, satisfying power-ups, terrific graphics, and quick load times are making Ratchet and Clank a winner so far. The game seems to feature a lengthy and varied single player experience and I can't wait to get through it all. Of course, the game includes online Infrastructure multiplayer as well.

Expect a full review closer to the game's release.

See also:
Ratchet & Clank multiplayer beta hands-on

Ratchet & Clank heads to gold; developers ruminate

High Impact Games, developers of the upcoming Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters, has started their own blog at Club IGN. Obviously, it's filled with tons of PR-talk that hype up the game. However, considering the impressive footage of the game we've seen so far, I think it's safe to give the team the benefit of the doubt, and assume the game's at least pretty decent. With the game's release now only a few weeks away, the game is quickly approaching gold status. A few random tidbits of note from their blog:
  • On control: "I find myself switching between analog stick and D-pad moment to moment, depending on whether I'm platforming or annihilating angry robots with upgraded Lacerator."
  • On graphics: "[Ratchet]'s been cut down to half his normal polys, but the furry little guy looks almost indistinguishable from his PS2 counterpart!"
  • On mini-games: "It's a real joy to see Clank hold his own in the demolition derby game. Is that a gleam of anger I see in his tiny green eyes? Malice?"
High Impact promises more updates to their blog soon, so those of you interested in the game may want to bookmark their Club IGN page. We'll have a full review closer to its February 13th launch date.

PSP January Content Pack now available

Every month, Sony offers an EXE file they call the "Content Pack" which contains a variety of files, like videos, music and wallpapers for your PSP. This month's pack contains an extensive eight-minute video preview of the upcoming Ratchet & Clank game. You'll also get to keep those creepy PLAY B3YOND ads for the PLAYSTATION 3, and see the "Gran Turismo Awards."

This video-heavy package clocks in at a hefty 178MB. Feel free to visit Sony's official US website to download.

[Thanks, Lucas Caruana!]

Japan gives Ratchet & Clank a lengthy title

While searching my favorite import site Play Asia I saw a listing for the Japanese version of Ratchet & Clank for PSP. Normally I wouldn't pay attention to something like that since I plan on buying the US version the day it comes out, but the title really grabbed me. Just don't ask me to repeat it without looking.

So rather than Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters Japan gets Ratchet & Clank Gekitotsu! Dodeka Ginga no MiriMiri Gundan. Which in Japanese translates either to Ratchet & Clank Collide! Watch the Galactic Symphony or Ratchet & Clank I Don't Really Know Japanese! I think maybe the reason that there isn't cover art for the game yet is because they're still trying to figure out how to fit the title on the box.

Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters hits US shelves next month.

Even more Ratchet & Clank videos

You probably know this by now: Ratchet & Clank is a beautiful, beautiful game. As if the previous deluge of videos wasn't enough to satisfy you, GameTrailers.com has uploaded two more of the game in action, proving that guns can make any genre more fun. Check them out, after the cut.

Continue reading Even more Ratchet & Clank videos

More Ratchet & Clank videos than you can handle

Think you can handle five videos of the hotly anticipated Ratchet & Clank? With this much video content, you might think you were actually playing the game. Sad truth is, you're not. Check out all the vids, after the cut.

Continue reading More Ratchet & Clank videos than you can handle

Ratchet & Clank interview showcases PSP's best graphics

Gamespot recently interviewed Leslie Mathieson from High Impact Games, developer of the upcoming PSP-exclusive platform-shooter Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters. Leslie talks about how the team wanted to stay true to the series' storytelling blah blah blah blah. I'm sorry, I couldn't pay attention to what she was saying because I was so mesmerized by the graphics of the game. The incredible detail, and fantastic animation, make it easily one of the best looking titles on our handheld. The still screenshots don't seem to do the game any justice. Do yourself a favor and watch the video now.

PSP Fanboy hands-on: Ratchet & Clank

Did you successfully get into the Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters beta test? The packages have been going out to the lucky GAP members that were fast enough to get into this very exclusive group (only 2000 people were allowed to sign up!). I've been playing a few rounds online, and it's been an overwhelmingly positive experience so far. The graphics are smooth, and the controls are pretty solid. It's been very easy to jump into a game, and the network connection has been fantastic, with lag not noticeable at all.

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: Ratchet & Clank

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