Between 2002-2004 PlayStation 2 has been blessed with three blockbuster platformers, Sly Cooper, Jak and Daxter, and of course Ratchet and Clank. But in 2005, just Sly remains true to their platforming roots, with Ratchet becoming a full-fletched shooter, while Jak makes a questionable shift into a racing title. Today we are going to check out Ratchet: Deadlocked for the Playstation 2. Can this game possibly do as well without the beloved Clank? Read our full review to find out!
Sure the gameplay in the Ratchet and Clank series has been solid, but they never have been known for fantastic storylines, which to be honest has always been a tough point for any Ratchet game. They have all been good, but definitely nothing to write home about. Well thus is the same with this game, as Deadlocked really doesn’t offer anything overly new in terms of story ideas. Basically Ratchet’s ship is taken over by a group of bad guys who then force him to participate in this really weird reality show called DreadZone. The idea is an interesting choice for Insomniac, and it shows their desires to change this game from the platformer to a more pure action title.
Ratchet: Deadlocked definitely is much more of an action game. You will be introduced to all of this action in the qualifying rounds of DreadZone, where you learn the in and outs of the game. The core controls have remained the same, which is explained in a very short but informative tutorial mode. It is here that you will meet your two new sidekicks who basically replace Clank. The two bots can be controlled using the directional pad and become quite essential, especially later on in the game.
The whole purpose of Deadlocked is basically to make it through this reality show, and this is how the game goes from start to finish. The action in the game will remind you of what you have seen in the past few Ratchet games, with plenty of different guns and upgrades. So the actual action in the game won’t surprise anyone. Throughout the game you will be looking to upgrade your weapons with new abilities, making them more lethal and effective. This is old hat for any Ratchet fan, but actually fits even better in this game, especially with how the game gets more and more difficult throughout.
The single player mode is fun; it has some great qualities that can make for a very fun experience. I must say that Ratchet does a nice job of keeping things nice and clean cut. You know exactly what to expect from the game from start to finish, the biggest downside is how quick the end comes. This game will take most people under ten hours, as there is not a whole lot of depth to this game. Deadlocked really plays just as smooth as the games in the past, just without all of the jumping.
Of course the single player is not the only draw for this game, as it also hosts some online and offline multiplayer. The game not only hosts co-op, which works pretty well, but also some great multiplayer modes, including Deathmatch, King of the Hill, Capture the Flag, Juggernaut, or Conquest. The games played great online, but from my experiences online, finding games has been a pretty difficult. Once you do find an open game the experience is solid and manages to get the job done.
Overall Deadlocked is not a game that brings an overly new feel to the world of Ratchet and Clank. This is the first year where I sat back after playing the game and just wasn’t all that thrilled. Sure the game was still a solid experience, but in the end it didn’t bring a whole lot of new content to the game.
Visually Ratchet is still a great looking game, and this is mainly shown in the fantastic character models that can be seen throughout the game. I must say that Insomniac has definitely got the whole Ratchet formula down, as the game just never misses a beat from where the series has been going. The frame rate in the game stays smooth throughout, even with the added commotion that wasn’t as apparent in previous games.
The only real gripe I had was the environments, which were nowhere near as varied as they had been in year’s past. Sure the detail was there, but it began to feel like you were playing in the same environments over and over again. Overall the presentation of Deadlocked is solid, giving a great amount of detail, a good amount of detail, and an overall solid appearance.
Ratchet: Deadlocked is a solid game all the way, and the same can be said about the fun value of the game. For those gamers who have enjoyed these sort of games in the past (Ratchet and Clank games) then you will continue to enjoy Deadlocked, as this is still the same sort of game just with a lot less jumping. In my opinion I liked the game better when they had more jumping and less shooting, but either way the game still ends up being impressive. In the end if you enjoyed Ratchet and Clank, then you will enjoy Deadlocked.
There is no other way to say this, other than to say that Deadlocked is a downright solid game that really doesn’t suffer from any major problems. The only real gripe I do have with the game is that it is not all that big of a leap from previous titles. But for those who have enjoyed the previous Ratchet and Clank games, you will continue to enjoy Ratchet: Deadlocked, even if Clank only plays a minor role in this adventure.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.