Sunday, November 02, 2014

Ratchet and Clank HD Trilogy / Vita

So, completed the first and third of the series this weekend. Had a bloody awesome time! Been a loong while since I spent so much time on gaming. I think there's something to be said about the positive mood gains when completing a level :)

The first game was generally very well done, the main "issues" I have is platforming with the gravity boots, the controls aren't very intuitive for me with them, and I've fallen off the (narrow) paths too many times. If they are static paths, no problem, I can just inch through them step by step, but there are some paths that have lava or what not cuts into the path at times and omg it is so annoying to have to restart a section after falling off the edge >.>

The final boss was the other showstopper, I spent all my bolts buying various ammo (I did not have the ultimate weapon) and didn't really get anywhere. In  my frustration, I switched from "hit him from a distance" to "ah, *@&^ this, let's get close and let him eat my blaster!" (fact: I ran out of bolts to buy the more expensive ammo as I died sooo many times :P)

Unbelievably, the blaster, one of the earliest weapons in the game did really good damage to the final boss! In addition, the blaster takes out mines and critters the boss shoots out, and really the only thing to avoid was the shockwave grenades he throws - I couldn't seem to jump over the shockwaves in close, only from a distance.  By the time I reached the final form of the boss, I had run out of ammo for the blaster. Took out the pyrocitor to melt the mines and critters, while waiting for the ammo boxes to appear... then when the blaster was maxxed out. Bam. Dead boss.

The 2nd game has major crashing issues. Online forums indicate buying the digital download avoids this, gah. I bought the cart because it was used, so really affordable. The crashing is a pain, but what seems to happen is the game saves the data, then loads up the next stage. This loading of the next stage crashes, but upon reloading, you continue onwards in the next stage so it's not too bad, just friggin big waste of time.

I found part 2 of the trilogy to be a big step forward, yet at the same time, many things did not appeal to me. I felt the mini games to be a real drag to play, and that the enemy damage/ammo-you-have balance to be skewed towards the end of the game - or its just that I suck.

Fighting with the wrench up close towards the end of the game is not really doable when fighting large vehicles supported by other flying vehicles with gunbound enemies! The 2nd to last stage had me going back to the ammo vendor endlessly to refill my sniper rifle, then back again. Some stages, I basically gave up killing every enemy unit, and just blitzed through them to get to the end zone, as I had no ammo left!

This is the problem I'm encountering at the moment, running out of ammo as I'm fighting the bulk of the enemies, only to encounter a pair of tanks that I can't kill as I'd spent all my long range ammo on the snipers! Gah! I'm going to put the game aside for awhile.

The 3rd of the trilogy plays like a well tuned engine. It is balanced near perfectly, and has so many convenience features like a "buy all ammo" option. In addition, weapons you have and are already maxxed out don't show in the weapons vendor screen, making it very easy to determine what you can buy for, and what ammo you need.

The mini game here was simple, and very easy to get into the zone; I love the MDK-esque parts when you skydive into new areas with other commando robots. Not sure what else to say, it's a very polished game, and the pacing is great, something is always coming up, making it difficult to say, "I'll stop here for the day" without feeling a sense of un-accomplishment.

One fun thing about the trilogy is that weapons from previous games are available, and if you bought them, get them free! I also like the fact that Clank starts out the 2nd game fully upgraded, because the first game had us going around to upgrade him. Characters from previous games also make appearances. Such continuity just puts a smile on my face.

Can't wait for the movie next year, I'll know who all the characters are now :3

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