Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal
Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal (also known as Ratchet & Clank 3 in Europe) is a run & gun platforming game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 2, released in North America on November 3, 2004 and Europe on November 12, 2004.
Why It Rocks
- If you hold all the L and R triggers on the title screen you unlock a Sly 2: Band of Thieves demo.
- High quality graphics and polished sound effects.
- Planets feel more alive than environments in other games on the PlayStation 2 due to the moving objects in the background.
- Many awesome futuristic gadgets and weapons to use, such as the Bouncer, Mini-Turret Glove, Shield Charger, Hypershot, and more.
- The weapons upgrade system is vastly improved from Going Commando, now all weapons can level up to level five rather than just upgrading once. This is a very effective way to encourage the player to keep rotating weapons consistently to upgrade them rather than just sticking with a few. Each upgrade gives the weapon new abilities, or improves one of the existing abilities, as well as making it more powerful and possibly extending the weapons ammo capacity. The level five upgrade changes the appearance of the weapon drastically, gives it a new name, as well as giving it a new ability.
- In "Challenge Mode" (this game's term for new game plus) you can purchase Mega weapon upgrades for weapons already at level 5 which allow you level up the weapon to level 8, and make the weapon even stronger.
- If you're in the Phoenix base you can try out weapons before buying them so you don't end up wasting a lot of bolts on a weapon you won't like.
- Awesome driving and ship driving controls.
- Ratchet's health is now properly displayed by a numbered health bar that is easier to keep track of.
- Many optional missions and mini games.
- Captain Qwark is playable in 2D arcade-styled platformer minigames. These tell the backstory of Qwark and Dr. Nefarious but form Qwark's egotistical self-centered point of view.
- The game's difficulty is significantly more forgiving than Going Commando, which was criticized for being too difficult.
- Non-stop action and shooting experience.
- The game features a multi-player mode.
- Many secret items lie hidden on every level.
- Travel through different planets from around the galaxy, each with its own environment, enemies and obstacles.
- Doctor Nefarious is a very funny villain. Whenever he gets really upset he malfunctions and broadcasts a soap opera.
- There's a Britney Spears parody character called "Courtney Gears", who actually does have a song in-game and is a boss fight.
- Throwbacks to the first game are included as some planets such as Blackwater City and Metropolis from the first game are revisited with remixed themes.
- If you have a save file for the first Ratchet & Clank game where you have completed the second Hoverboard Race you get a discount on Gadgetron weapons, and a skin that makes Ratchet look like he did in the first game. This is foreshadowed in the first game when Ratchet gets a job in Gadgetron and is told that his employee discount would activate in two years.
- If you have a save file for Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando you can obtain the weapons from that game available in said save file for free. These weapons can upgrade all the way up to level five and eight unlike the Gadgetron weapons in the second game and are actually very powerful in this game.
- Like other games in the series, Up Your Arsenal has very funny jokes thrown in for good measure.
- Great online multiplayer modes.
- Like the second game this game hints that it is the third game in the series by flipping the ampersand in the logo to reveal a symbol that looks like the number 3 and the subtitle has three words in it.
- The Hacker mini-games are likely to get repetitive and tedious.
- Qwark's Hideout is a massive difficulty spike. The Qwark-bots deal too much damage, quickly destroy cover, you have to deal with ice physics, and there's too many of them at once.
- Had BARELY any levels compared to the other two games, as this game only has 20 levels when the first game had 38 levels, and the second game had 31 levels, meaning this game has the least amount of levels in the series.
- This was the result of the game only being in development for a year.
- The HD ports have some glitches such as Ratchet's helmet floating over his head.
- To pad the game's length, most of the enemies in later levels annoyingly start to become bullet sponges.
- This game slightly shifts away from platforming compared to Going Commando and into more shooter-like gameplay, although this is minor.
- The HD port also has Pause on Quick Select off, and there is no way to turn it back on.
The game was met with critical acclaim upon release, earning an average review score of 91% at Metacritic. In August 2005 Up Your Arsenal entered the Greatest Hits line-up. Since its release, it has sold over 2.15 million copies in the US alone.
- ALWAYS use the strafe feature during combat. Moving side to side makes it easier to face the direction of your enemies than if you turned left or right while still being able to shoot them. You can strafe by holding L2, or force Ratchet to strafe all the time by changing to Lock-Strafe or First Person mode in the options menu. This was considered so important to the gameplay by the developers, that if you don't use it often enough a help-desk message will actually show up to tell you to use the strafing feature.
- Make sure you use at least 5-6 weapons and consistently rotate your weapons so all stay at reasonable levels, otherwise your strong weapons will run out of ammo and you'll be forced to work with underpowered weapons.
- Just like Going Commando, the Annihilation Nation Battle Arena is a good option to grind experience for weapons.
- Prioritize saving Bolts for Armor upgrades. Without the latest armors enemies will kill you in 2-3 hits in the later levels. Big Al will bring this to your attention if you forget to purchase the newest set of armor.
- For the second section of the final boss against Doctor Nefarious, use the Charge Boots to dash past the enemies and rush to get to the section where Nefarious becomes vulnerable again, don't waste too much ammo fighting other enemies.
- When you start Challenge Mode, grind for some bolts to buy some Mega weapons. If you don't, then you will be stuck using the V5 weapons which are made useless quickly, but if you buy the Mega weapons, they immediately become efficient again, and will help with the game's difficulty spike in later levels.