Distributor: Ster Kinekor
Reviewed on: Playstation 3
Also available on: N A
If we had to give it a numerical score: 8.8/10
Ratchet and Clank Into the Nexus feels very familiar, and fortunately it feels familiar to me because I paid more attention to the series in the previous generation, where my favourite titles in the series were found. Into the Nexus’ mechanics are very reminiscent of the games from the Playstation 2 era. I normally am the first to point out a ‘rinse and repeat’ sequel, but with such a wonderful and classic series, “more of the same” is exactly what I am looking for, as for me it was the Ratchet and Clank games from the said era that made the series. Into the Nexus plays in the manner that I want my Ratchet and Clank games to play.
It’s certainly no copy and paste job as we do get some wonderfully zany new weapons and gadgets to work with, and the narrative concludes the Future series. Some of the fan-favourite tech that returns is the hover-boots and the heli-pack. Any ardent fan of the series will tell you that besides the distinct style of humorous storytelling, the weapons and gadgets are what the series is all about really. Into the Nexus offers some of the beloved classics in this department, and some well-designed new stuff. The highlight of the new tech includes a new variant on the heli-pack – the jetpack – which works well within the “future” theme.
Insomniac also introduce us to some new puzzle components with Into the Nexus, and thrown into the platforming is some zero-gravity bits, for which Ratchet is equipped with some Gravity Boots to deal with this component. Then staying with the “gravity” theme, Ratchet has a new grav-tether which fires gravity streams between points. The 2D puzzle bits are where Clank shifts into the “Nexus” and where he can manipulate gravity. The gravity puzzles are not the most complicated and keep the pace of the game flowing nicely.
While I welcome the new gravity-themed gameplay, I love Into the Nexus for all the same reasons that I loved the PS2 games. I remember falling in love with the series all those years back, where half the joy of playing through the game was eagerly awaiting the next gadget or gun to unlock, and Into the Nexus surprises and delights in this department, pleasing and surprising in a timely pace.
Insomniac skipped the multiplayer, something I just didn’t feel was appropriate for the series, and chose to rather include a Challenge Mode, which basically just pushes up the difficulty of activities and objectives. The game in ‘normal mode’, which worked perfectly for my young daughter, was a little too easy for me. So if you are looking for a real challenge, then Into the Nexus Challenge Mode has you covered.
In terms of production quality, Into the Nexus certainly looks pretty and the sound quality if top notch. From the orchestral score that compliments the humorous dialogue, to the equally humorous sound-effects. The characters themselves look better than ever, as do their animations, but the gaming world is not an enormous step forward. The five planets you explore are pleasing on the eye, but a little more detail would have been welcome.
In conclusion, I would describe Into the Nexus as a triumphant return to form for the series. It shows that Insomniac know what their audience are looking for from the series, and ran with the more loved aspects of the series. I look forward to where the whole ‘gravity gameplay’ could go with any future title in the series, and I got the closure I wanted from the Future series, so I’m a happy fan.
Coming in it at a cheaper price point, including a whole other game in the series and offering some of the best traits from the series as well as some awesome new stuff, makes Ratchet and Clank Into the Nexus a no-brainer to recommend.
Read about our ratings here.
What I liked
- New weapons and gadgets and variants in cop mode
- Includes Quest for Booty
- Gameplay captures the best of the series
Not so much
- A short-lived experienced (but priced according at least)
- Still, I want more!