When Ratchet and Clank – Size Matters was announced as a PSP exclusive, haters of the dinky handheld console had yet another clip of ammo added to their “but it’s only a handheld PS2” weaponry. The daft sods.
Starting life way back in the early naughties on the PS2, Ratchet and his little robotic pal Clank have consistently offered up some cracking third person platforming action. We’re talking some of the best PS2 games currently available, so this release is a real biggie for the PSP.
Let’s just hope this port brings across all that giddy goodness that the PS2 versions included firmly intact.
Not familiar with the series? Well, let’s give you a little taster of what Ratchet and Clank are all about.
R&C is a platformer in the Mario 64 mould with a lot of running and jumping around levels, trying to achieve set goals in order to blast off to the next planet. The platforming’s nice and simple, but not quite as enjoyable as the Nintendo classic.
But that’s where R&C’s sneaky little extra comes into play. Weapons. There’s dozens of the buggers in fact. Just run around picking up nuts and bolts and you can exchange them brand new weapons and ammo at certain points.
Weapons also upgrade themselves over time. Keep using one and it’ll magically turn into a more powerful and, most important, more fun version.
The weapons make R&C what it is and, luckily for us, this PSP version doesn’t disappoint. Our favourite is the one where you can set groups of tiny robots on your enemies and just sit back and watch the carnage. Hilarious.
The story is just as over the top and comical as always. With the dynamic duo away on their holidays, a little girl asks them to pose heroically for a few shots. But suddenly she’s kidnapped and R&C’s holiday is cut short as they set off on a gallant rescue
OK, so the ‘save the fair maiden’ doesn’t sound like anything new story wise. Trust us, the tale is anything but dull. Most cut scenes will cause a few giggles and some will even bring on some real deep belly laughs. Every character’s been voiced absolutely superbly and the humour is for everyone. There’s a few subtle jokes that will cause the more worldy wise amongst you to laugh out loud, while little Jimmy wonders what it all means.
R&C on the handheld is so easy to control. With the d-pad used for strafing around targets, the shoulder buttons to rotate the camera, the analogue stick to move and the face buttons to jump and fire, it’s all fine and dandy. Long time fans may miss the second analogue stick, but you’ll be used to it after a half hour’s play.
Speaking of playtime, Size Matters will last you a good dozen hours. Even after that, there’s a load more to see with a second play through and even a four player multiplayer mode to jump in and enjoy with your pals. Seems the title wasn’t kidding.
The graphics are pretty sharp too. Sit this and the last PS2 game side by side and chances are you’ll see no differences in terms of looks. Size Matters really shows off what the PSP can do when it’s in the right hands.
So what if it’s similar to the PS2 versions? This is so much fun that every PSP owner out there should give it a try at least. Chances are you’re going to love it.