Saturday, June 1, 2013

Ratchet: Deadlocked (HD)

Recently, Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault finally had its Vita version released, months after the original game (even though it's a Cross Buy title). To make up for this wait, those that purchased the PS3 version of the game not only got the Vita release, which I plan to talk about separately, but also the HD version of Ratchet: Deadlocked for free. After taking advantage of this offer, I decided to see how well Deadlocked made the transition to HD. It made the transition pretty well, but it has...issues.

Something I should mention right away that I didn't in my original review is that this game has a difficulty setting, which would be abandoned and then brought back for Quest for Booty forward. To this end, I played on the Easy difficulty then and now in order to get through the game quicker. Plus, it seems you can change the difficulty at any time, which provides a bonus for some people who may want to lower it to get past a difficult challenge. However, this is still probably one of the shortest Ratchet & Clank games by far, surpassed only by the aforementioned Quest for Booty. Consider this paragraph a much-needed addendum to my original review.

This paragraph, however, is not an addendum. While everything about the original experience remains intact, there's only one problem I have with it: the graphics. Now that's not to say the graphics are garbage; they actually look better with the HD treatment applied to them. The problem herein lies within the real-time cut scenes, which end up acting a bit choppy as they constantly try to readjust the shapes they are rendering. There's also some rather...intriguing mis-rendering, such as, among others, being able to see Gleeman Vox's gumline rendered through his upper lip and being able to see right through the models' eyes whenever they wear glasses or shades; there's even a slightly nightmarish close-up at one point of Ratchet, in which you get to see right through his face and see the inside of his head polygons. I don't think I remember seeing this problem in the original game, and I hope someone notices and fixes this.

Ratchet: Deadlocked has a rather good HD port, even with some buggy cut scenes. This game has a multiplayer function, but while I didn't take a look at it, I think fans of the original release's multiplayer will be glad to know it's back online. I would encourage you, if you are new to the series and have access to it through buying Full Frontal Assault, to play Ratchet & Clank Collection first before taking a shot at this game. It may be an imperfect port, but at least it was free.

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