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Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One is a game for the PlayStation 3 developed by Insomniac Games. It is the 9th installment in the Ratchet & Clank series. The game is a platformer shooter; however, it relies on a four player co-operative system where the players can choose to play as either Ratchet, Clank, Qwark or Nefarious. It is the first spin-off game in the series by Insomniac Games.
All 4 One takes place two years after the events of A Crack in Time. [verification needed] The game begins when Galactic President Captain Qwark goes to the city of Luminopolis to receive an "Intergalactic Tool of Justice Award," and he asks Ratchet and Clank to escort him which, in reality, is Nefarious's latest plan. During the "ceremony" he unleashes a Light-Eating Z'Grute on the city of Luminopolis, which is eventually defeated by Ratchet, Clank, Qwark and Nefarious. However, this rare creature attracts the attention of Ephemeris the Creature Collector, and the foursome are kidnapped and dumped on planet Magnus, banding together as the Fearsome Foursome. Ephemeris was using Magnus as an open-air reserve for the universe's most dangerous creatures, terrorizing the locals. The team is rescued by a little girl. Although hesitantly, Ratchet and Clank postpone their vacation and set off to stop Ephemeris. With no other way to get home, Qwark and Nefarious join the heroes—begrudgingly. The team found out that Ephemeris was guarded by Commander Spog after the team went to the Deadgrove. The team found N.E.S.T, a base of operations for Spog. After the team battled Commander Spog, Ephemeris had been controlled by Nevo Binklemeyer, a long-time friend of Frumpus Croid.
After fighting Commander Spog at the N.E.S.T, they find out that only the Architect knows how to defeat Ephemeris and head over to Terawatt Forest, beyond Octonok Cay. They also find Dr Croid's first holo-diary. It shows the happier times on Magnus. While in Octonok Cay, they find Dr. Croid's next two holo-diaries. They show that Dr Nevo Binkelmiyer, Dr Croid's colleague betrayed him, ravaged his laboratory, took Mr Dinkles, Dr Croid's companion and stole the plans to a protomorphic energy extracter and that Dr. Croid sent a smaller version of Ephemeris to rescue his companion, Mr. Dinkles. When they reach Dr Croid's research station, they find Dr Croid's fourth holo-dairy. It shows that Nevo seized control of Ephemeris and modified it into what it is now, and that Nevo is responsible for everything Ephemeris has done. When the team reaches the Hall of Paradoxology in Terawatt Forest, they find that Dr. Croid has moved his laboratory to the Phonica Moon, having expected Nevo to make an assassination attempt on him. When the team reaches Phonica Moon, they realize that Dr. Croid has seemingly gone insane. After accessing the lab's computers, Nefarious discovers that Ephemeris has a charging dock that recharges its power cells, the dock being stationed on the VilerogPlateau just outside Uzo City. The team takes Dr. Croid's escape pod to the Vilerog Plateau, but on the way, Ephemeris attacks them and they crash land into the Polar Sea, unable to contact Cronk and Zephyr. When they discover a railway station, they find that it is broken. Qwark fakes dying, attempting to make amends with Nefarious. Just then, the plumber appears and fixes the railway platform so the heroes can travel to Uzo City.
When the team reaches the core of Ephemeris, they discover that Nevo is not actually in charge of Ephemeris, having been betrayed by Mr. Dinkles, who is possessed by a Toranux Spirit. He reveals that Nevo did not betray Dr Croid. Mr Dinkles had done the things Dr Croid thought Nevo had done. Although Nevo tried to stop Mr Dinkles, Mr Dinkles captured Nevo and made him his "pet." He will also use the collected beasts as vessels for the Toranux Spirits so that they can destroy the universe. After fighting the heroes, he extracts his spirit into a Rykan V Grivelnox. After a long and fierce final battle, Dr. Croid and Nevo manage to extract the spirit, which is promptly destroyed by Nefarious. Soon afterwards, the Fearsome Foursome take sigh of relief and Dr.Croid and Nevo reuniting. A moment later, Cronk and Zephyr arrive, revealing that they finally received help from Lawrence. Nefarious and Lawrence steal Cronk and Zephyr's ship and leave the heroes stranded on Magnus. Thankfully, Ratchet remembers that Ephemeris is still active, and everyone decides to use it so that they can return to Luminopolis.
After the credits, Lawrence tells Nefarious of a secret route they can take past the barriers set by the Polaris Defense Force. During this, Nefarious nostalgically looks at the picture he took with Ratchet, Clank, and Qwark.
Gameplay consists of firefights with a varied arsenal of weapons like previous games, but it is largely centered around cooperative gameplay mechanics. Players will often have to cooperate and rely on each other to progress though a level, but Insomniac has been careful to keep All 4 One enjoyable at the same time. "We had gameplay mechanics where one player would do something and the other three were waiting for them to do it. It was just intensely boring. Waiting around is not a lot of fun," said Mike McManus, a gameplay programmer at Insomniac.
Examples of this co-op gameplay are sections where players must launch each other onto buttons with the Vac-U, or tilt their controllers in unison to move the team in order to escape a wind tunnel by creating the most air resistance. Some platforms act like a seesaw and will topple over if too much weight is applied to one side, so players must work together to balance the platform and prevent falling off. Teamwork is rewarded though a co-op points system. These points "are charging something up" and "make a very cool thing happen in the game." Some points go to players' individual profiles "when you work together very well." For example, co-op points are awarded when extraNanotech is passed onto a teammate who is low on nanotech.
The "director's view" camera allows for more cinematic views than previous games, which Insomniac has named "cinematic co-op." These cinematic sequences occur in "almost every level." In addition to providing cinematic views, the camera changes position to give the optimal view of points of interest, such as a 3/4 top view of a group of enemies or a side view of a platforming section.
While cooperative, gameplay can also be competitive. The bolt counter at the top right of the screen compares players' individual bolt counts, fueling friendly rivalries and races to become the first owner of a new weapon. The Vac-U can also be used to launch players into a bottomless pit in order to get a certain item first. The before-mentioned co-op points system is meant to discourage from players abusing these competitive mechanics and acting like total jerks by rewarding cooperation. According to an article by Joystiq, the competitive mechanics can be switched off if this becomes a problem, though there has been no mention of this since. Players can also be kicked or banned from a session. More casual competition exists in mechanics like Cluster Cannons, where the first player to activate the cannon gets a bonus.
Death is penalized only with a small bolt penalty (40 bolts in the Luminopolis demo) and having to wait a few seconds to respawn. If you die in combat, you can be revived by other players using your Vac-U. However, if the whole team dies, they have to go back to the last checkpoint.
All 4 One adds a four-player drop-in drop-out co-op system to the classic Ratchet & Clank formula. The four players can be local, through the use of multiple controllers; online players, through the use of PlayStation Network; or, in the case of a single player, one AI character controlled by the CPU. Voice chat is supported. Players can drop in or out at any time during gameplay. If you play alone, you will have the choice of playing as Ratchet, Clank, Qwark, or Dr. Nefarious. If you choose Ratchet, Qwark, or Dr. Nefarious, an AI controlled Clank will ride on your back and hop off to fight enemies and help in sections that require two players. Any combination of characters can be used when playing single player, such as a miniaturised Qwark that hops onto Clank's back in singleplayer and jumps off in combat in full-size. As players progress through the game, they build up a profile associated with their PSN ID. When players join an online game hosted by another player's profile, they get to keep "some things" associated with their profile, one of which is trophies. Players can also login to their profile on another PS3 to keep those "things" when playing.
To accommodate inexperienced players, All 4 One uses alerts to keep online players on the same page and avoid the frustration of trying to tell your clueless team members what to do. In addition, each character has an appropriate color which is used to associate items and objects in the HUD with that player. To keep players aware of where their characters are, character-colored trails appear during longer jumps, and colored rings appear underneath characters in darker areas like Terawatt Forest. This is also used in more specific situations, for example, characters wakeboard in one gameplay sequence, connected to the boat with colored ropes. This allows players to quickly locate their relatively small characters on screen by looking for their character's color.
At the end of each level or section of a level, bonus bolts are awarded, players' bolt counts are compared, and players are given "awards" reflecting their approach on the level. Example awards are "Bolt Master" for collecting the most bolts and "Noob" for dying the most.
Weapons and gadgets
Weapons are more powerful when used cooperatively. The Combuster, for example, adapts to All 4 One's cooperative nature by multiplying damage as more players fire at an enemy. New weapons like the Darkstar Fission Tether and Thundersmack are made for multiplayer. Electric energy beams connect player's Darkstar tethers together, creating a web of electricity which can be moved around of slice through groups of enemies or damage a larger enemy. Weapon upgrades can be purchased with bolts.
Each character uses their own unique melee attack, which are all aptly named. Ratchet uses his wrench, Clank uses Clank Fu, Qwark punches enemies with his "Fists of Justice," and Nefarious uses his claws, named "Annihilator Blades." In addition, each player can perform a slam move that acts like an OmniWrench Hyper-strike. Each character also has a boomerang-like weapon which acts like an OmniWrench Comet-strike.
A new gadget called Hookshot replaces the Swingshot from previous games and adds some new features for co-op. Players can latch onto each other with the Hookshot's grapple. Versa-targets are placed with a lot of space between them, so players must latch onto each other to reach the next vera-target. The Hookshot can also be used to pull a player falling to their death back up, or to pull the rest of the team over a gap after one player has gotten across.
Each character also has an appropriate special weapon. Ratchet has the Doppelbanger, a decoy; Clank has the Zoni Ray, which slows down enemies; Qwark has the Quantum Deflector shield, highlighting his "not a fighter" personality; and Nefarious has the Cloaker, highlighting his sneakiness and treachery. These weapons can be used cooperatively to help other team members. For example, you can draw enemy fire with a Doppelbanger decoy, taking the pressure off other team members.
is used as an action button in All 4 One. Some objects have a icon floating over them whenever the characters are close. Whenever a player holds , their character performs the action related to it. If there is no object such object near, is used for the Hookshot. The Quick Select can be accessed by moving the right stick. Melee attacks can be performed with . L3 is used for sprinting. is no longer used for firing weapons, but for the Vac-U. Holding L1 is locks onto the target in the aiming reticule, and makes your character strafe. L2 is used to show bolt total, how much bolts remain in your bank or to call your companion in single player. The D-Pad is used for two things, toggling between the last weapon used (if you currently have a gadget equipped) and the last gadget used (if you have a weapon equipped) and 3 quickslots. To assign a weapon to a quickslot, hold L2 + R2 and press the direction on the D-Pad you want to assign the weapon to, up left or right.
All 4 One uses a different art style than previous PlayStation 3 titles. Objects and scenery take on a cartooned appearance, and the sizes of characters have been distorted. Clank for example, was the size of a backpack in previous titles, but is now taller and closer to Ratchet's height. In addition, Ratchet lacks visible fur and Qwark's head has shrunk considerably. The HUD uses even more cartooned versions of the characters. In the HUD, Qwark's chin is exaggerated, and Nefarious's head is taller.
Surprisingly, cel-shading does not return in aspects such as explosions unlike in its predecessor, A Crack in Time.
All 4 One's art style continued to see usage in succeeding titles, with minor differences, such as Clank's size returning to normal and Ratchet's fur becoming longer and more noticeable. It was not until Ratchet & Clank (PS4) that the art style would be severely changed.
- Commander Spog
- Dr. Croid
- Kip Darling (heard only)
- Loki Master
- Nevo Binklemeyer
- Pepper Fairbanks (heard only)
- The Plumber
- Vorn Garblak (heard only)
- Light Eating Z'Grute
- Commander Spog
- King Sepiad
- Tank Minion
- Mr. Perkins
- Scorch Minion
- Alpha Grungoth
- Loki Master
- Mr. Dinkles
- Rykan V Grivelnox
- Annihilator Blades
- Anti-Matter Pulse Cannon (mentioned only)
- Arc Lasher
- Critter Strike
- Darkstar Fission Tether
- Fists of Justice
- Mr. Zurkon
- Omegatech Frost Cannon
- Ratchet's wrench (either OmniWrench 8000 or OmniWrench Millenium 12)
- Plasmabomb Launcher
- Pyro Blaster
- Quantum Deflector
- Qwark's throwing weapon
- RYNO VI Protosuit
- Zoni Blaster
- Glob Lobber
- Gravity Boots
- Grind Boots
- Quake Hammer
- Agorian (mentioned only)
- Blarg (mentioned only)
- Cragmite (mentioned only)
- Drophyd (mentioned only)
- Kerchu (mentioned only)
- Terachnoid (mentioned only)
- Terraklon(mentioned only)
Planets and locations
- Rooftop Amphitheatre
- Aldaros Plains
- Detention Cell
- Receiving Station
- The Deadgrove
- Orthani Gorge
- Root Cavern
- Access Shaft
- Mining Camp
- Elerox Pass
- Moktor Outpost
- Vertigus Cliffs
- N.E.S.T. Enterance
- Rehabitation Center
- Octonok Cay
- Reef Shallows
- Octonok Lighthouse
- Top Of The Lighthouse
- Terawatt Forest
- Kaleero Trail
- Phonica Moon
- Polar Sea
- Middle of Nowhere
- Uzo City
Behind the scenes
Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One was not the only title that was considered for the final product. Insomniac Games mentioned there was a spreadsheet that contained manypotential titles. The three most popular unused titles were 4 Play, Multiple Organisms, and Bros b4 Foes.
All co-op gameplay mechanics had to pass a test which Insomniac has dubbed "CAKE." This stands for "Co-op, Active for all players, Kinetic, and Easy to understand."
Various members of Insomniac Games had wanted to have co-operative play with both Ratchet and Clank at the same time. Brian Allgeier soon suggested adding Qwark and Chad Dezern then decided Nefarious could also be added to turn it into a four player game.
Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One received mixed-average reviews. It achieved a score of 70 out of 100 at Metacritic and 70.63% at GameRankings. The game overall sold 1.5 million copies. [verification needed]
It was given a "Great" 8 out of 10 rating by IGN who praised the fun multiplayer gameplay and puzzle sections. However, they did say that the story and graphics were not as good as the previous Ratchet & Clank game, Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time. GameInformer also praised the game's co-operative gameplay, giving it a 8.75 out of 10.
Official PlayStation Magazine UK gave Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One a 6 out of 10 rating. They praised the co-operative fun with a range of gadgets and weaponry and the humorous story but criticized the lack of interaction concluding that it would be better as a "half-price kid's game" or released as a shorter title on the PlayStation Network. Destructoid stated the game was "below average" and gave the game 4 out of 10. They criticized it for jumping on the "co-op bandwagon" and having poor camera angles but did praise amusing cutscenes.
- Captain Qwark claimed that the game was being replaced by Copernicus Qwark's Awesomely Epic 3D Adventure Through Time & Space.
- All 4 One gives a description on how to earn skill points just like Ratchet: Deadlocked.
- Using a cheat code, you can unlock the Alpha Cannon. [verification needed]
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One hero bolt locations
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One Monsterpedia
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One skill points
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One trophies
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One walkthrough
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One cheats
- Ratchet & Clank series
- Ratchet & Clank comic series