Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus

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Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus
Ratchet & Clank Into the Nexus Cover.jpg
Developer(s) Insomniac Games
Tin Giant (Cancelled PS Vita version)
Publisher(s) Sony Computer Entertainment
Composer(s) Michael Bross
Series Ratchet & Clank
Platform(s) PlayStation 3
Release date(s) AU November 6, 2013[1]

NA November 12, 2013[2]
EU November 22, 2013[3]
JP December 12, 2013[4]

Genre(s) Platform
Mode(s) Single-player
Distribution Blu-ray Disc

Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus (known as Ratchet & Clank: Nexus in Europe) is a platform game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. It is the fourth and final installment in the "Future" series.[5] It released exclusively for the PlayStation 3 on November 6, 2013 in Australia,[1] November 12, 2013 in North America,[2] November 22, 2013 in Europe[3] and December 12, 2013 in Japan.[4] The series is noted for the inclusion of exotic and unique locations and over the top gadgets, a concept of the traditional Ratchet & Clank experience, that returns in this game.

Insomniac Games also confirmed there will be a download code for Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty included in this game.[3]

Plot[edit]

Ratchet and Clank, on board the Nebulox Seven Prison Ship, are tasked by Talwyn Apogee to deliver notorious criminal Vendra Prog to the Vartax Detention Centre. The duo wake up Cronk and Zephyr, who deactivate Vendra's cryosleep chamber so they can deliver her; however, the chamber malfunctions and Vendra awakens, using her psychic powers to distort the Nebulox's gravity. Ratchet manages to overcome the broken gravity and repairs the proton field around Vendra's cell, before activating an external backup generator. Vendra's twin brother Neftin, aided by the Thugs-4-Less organisation, suddenly attacks and frees Vendra; Ratchet and Clank pursue the Progs to the Nebulox bridge, only to be immobilised by Vendra. Vendra activates a number of explosives placed throughout the Nebulox and escapes with Neftin, while Ratchet and Clank are sucked into space through the fractured bridge window, unable to saved Cronk and Zephyr.

Escaping through the debris field, Ratchet and Clank latch on to an enemy ship which is proceeding to planet Yerek in the Zarkov Sector. Upon landing on Yerek, Ratchet feels disheartened about what happened to Cronk and Zephyr. He tells Talwyn, who urges the duo to return home because they are all she has left now. Seeking revenge instead, the duo venture into the forests of Yerek. During their explorations, they meet the Terachnoid Pollyx, who upgrades Clank with an experimental Rift Cracker to allow him to travel into another universe known as 'the Netherverse'. One of Pollyx's assistants gives the duo a Grav-Tether to move around the planet.

The duo reach the Meero Orphanage, the former home of the Prog twins, and discover that the Progs have built their own Dimensionator in order to open rifts to the Netherverse and allow the Nethers, the creatures which reside in that dimension, to enter their universe. Ratchet and Clank escape the oncoming Nethers and are rescued by Captain Qwark, bringing Ratchet's ship Aphelion with him. Qwark agrees to provide support for the team; Ratchet and Clank fly to Planet Kragg to compete in the Thugs-4-Less Destructapalooza Arena where they win a GrummelNet jetpack upgrade for Clank.

The duo fly on to Planet Silox, the centre of Vendra and Neftin's transdimensional experiments, and travel through the remains of Weeblesnog City to reach the Sky-train Station. The duo confront and defeat Neftin; Vendra then arrives and uses the Nether Dimensionator to bring the Nethers into their dimension. The Nether Leader, whom Vendra refers to as 'Mr Eye', captures her and reveals she was a pawn in his master plan, before having her cast into the Netherverse. Ratchet and Clank escape, and with some help from Neftin, agree to rendevouz with him on Planet Thram.

On reaching Planet Thram, the duo meet up with the Smuggler, who offers to give Ratchet back his Hoverboots in exchange for ten Gargathon horns. Having done so, Ratchet and Clank find Neftin's hideout, where he gives them a Tourbot that he and Vendra stole from the Intergalactic Museum of History on Planet Igliak. Neftin asks the duo to steal the Lombax Dimensionator so he can repair it and help them to banish the Nethers and rescue Vendra; Ratchet agrees on the condition the Progs turn themselves in.

Arriving on Igliak, Ratchet and Clank make their way through the museum and get the Dimensionator to Neftin. Mr Eye then arrives with the Nethers to destroy the Dimensionator; the duo quickly travel to the central city where they defeat four Netherbrutes, elite Nethers with advanced weaponry and armour that act as generals for the Nether armies. Mr Eye attempts to reach Neftin to destroy the Dimensionator; Ratchet hoverboots through a freeway to reach Neftin, and engages in battle with Mr Eye.

During the battle, Neftin uses the Dimensionator to launch Clank into the Netherverse where he locates and frees Vendra. Ratchet manages to defeat Mr Eye; Neftin uses the Dimensionator to return Clank and Vendra before opening another portal t the Netherverse. Using her powers, Vendra is able to banish the Nethers and Mr Eye once and for all. Neftin then turns himself and a powerless Vendra in to galactic authorities. Ratchet and Clank return to the museum's main hall with the now-inoperable Dimensionator, which Clank later takes with him.

In a post-credits scene, Cronk and Zephyr are shown as ghosts in front of a display dedicated to them in the Museum's main hall. After briefly trading insults, the two leave.

Gameplay[edit]

The gameplay is just like the other games in the series but more focuses on Gravity. The game features new weapons and gadgets as well as some returning ones like the Fusion Grenade and The Warmonger. The game introduces new weapons as well like The Winterizer, which creates a tornado freezing enemies and turns them into snowmen, The OmniBlaster, a fast short range weapon and a Nightmare Box, a device that scares enemies, usually in forms of clowns, an eye or a pirate leaving Ratchet all sorts of weapons to eliminate them. Skill Points, Cheats and Gold Bolts make their return. Gadgets include The Repulsor which suspends enemies in mid-air. Clank also participates in 2D sections referred to The Netherverses which are mind bending puzzles, where Clank must navigate a treacherous maze while a Nether follows him. The main goal is for the Nether to reach the other side of the rift through Ratchet's dimension. Gravity is a vital entity in this game, as it is used to travel to hard to reach places. Characters such as Zephyr, Cronk and Talwyn returned, not forgetting the half-hearted super-size hero Captain Qwark and The Plumber. The army of enemies called Thugs-4-Less (an army from the series' second game) will return. The Intergalactic Arena (named later as Destructapalooza) will also return. Raritanium is used to upgrade weapons. The game has three difficulty settings: Cadet, Hero and Legend. A Challenge Mode is also available.[6]

Development[edit]

Gameplay development[edit]

During early development a prototype level was created to ensure the game felt as it should for a traditional Ratchet & Clank game. One of the game's key themes is gravity with various puzzles and gadgets based around the use of gravity.

While developing the game inspiration for many of the gameplay features were taken from previous games in the series. The developers played through many of the previous games and took inspiration to bring back many favorite featured and also to tweak the game engine.

The 2D sections using Clank were inspired by a concept of turning Clank into a shadow. Insomniac Games' creative director Brian Allgeier used a projector to demonstrate Clank changing gravity. This eventually developed into the 2D Netherverses with gravity changing mechanics.

The game uses Insomniac Games' newest PlayStation 3 engine.

Plot development[edit]

The plot maintains the Ratchet & Clank series' expected humor but also has a scarier direction while exploring the darkness of space.[9] It continues Ratchet's personal story-arc and acts as an epilogue to the Ratchet & Clank Future saga. Into the Nexus was written by TJ Fixman. The villain's connection in finding their species is a key part of the plot in Into the Nexus and it follows previous Ratchet & Clank games in connecting Ratchet with the villains. The plot is also about Ratchet coming to terms with his decisions in Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time.

Title[edit]

The title shares some similarities with a cancelled project from 2006 titled Ratchet & Clank: NEXUS but no other similarities with the project are present. A working title for Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus was Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nether Regions referencing both the exploration of the darkness of space and acting as an innuendo common to the Ratchet & Clank series.

Release[edit]

The game was released on November 12, 2013 in North America and November 20, 2013 for most PAL regions, on the PlayStation 3 in both disc-based formats and also digitally through the PlayStation Store.

It was released on 6 November 2013 in Australia, 15 November 2013 in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, 21 November 2013 in Spain (Not much later it came out in Mexico), 22 November 2013 in Italy, and 12 December 2013 in Japan.

Ratchet & Clank: Before the Nexus[edit]

A mobile application, Ratchet & Clank: Before the Nexus, allows players to earn Raritanium for upgrading weapons in Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus. The game is in the style of an "endless-runner" where the player must collect bolts and defeat enemies as promotion for Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus. It was released December 18, 2013 only for iOS and Android devices

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 77.06%[7]
Metacritic 76/100[8]

Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus has received mostly positive reviews from critics. It has an aggregate score of 77.06% on GameRankings[7] and 76/100 on Metacritic.[8] GameZone's Josh Engen gave the PS3 version a 7.5/10, stating "Into the Nexus is good. Not great. Not bad. Just good. And anyone who tries to take a heavy-handed position is being ridiculous. "[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Ratchet & Clank™: NEXUS". PlayStation. Retrieved 2013-11-13. 
  2. ^ a b Ivan, Tom (2013-10-03). "Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus launches in November". GamesRadar. Retrieved 2013-10-03. 
  3. ^ a b c Hood, Joshua (2013-10-18). "Ratchet & Clank: Nexus Delayed A Week, Getting Free Quest For Booty". The Sixth Axis. Retrieved 2013-10-18. 
  4. ^ a b Homeyard, Craig (2013-09-30). "Ratchet & Clank Into The Nexus release date announced". TNT Gamer. Retrieved 2013-09-30. 
  5. ^ Moriarty, Colin (2013-07-10). "Traditional Ratchet and Clank Is Back With Into the Nexus". IGN. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  6. ^ 12.↑ 12.00 12.01 12.02 12.03 12.04 12.05 12.06 12.07 12.08 12.09 12.10 12.11 12.12 12.13 12.14 12.15 12.16 12.17 12.18 12.19 Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus Preview playthrough with Dev Q&A
  7. ^ a b "Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus for PlayStation 3". GameRankings. Retrieved November 12, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b "Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus for PlayStation 3 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved November 12, 2013. 
  9. ^ Engen, Josh (13 December 2013). "Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus Review: Follow the bouncing bolts". GZ. Retrieved 22 January 2014.