Why there has never been a better time to revisit this classic handheld gem.
Or to put it simply (and to paraphrase the marketing of the upcoming Ratchet and Clank PS4 release); Why now is a good time to play the handheld game based on a console game which is currently about to see a reboot in the form of a game, based on a movie, based on a game!
That’s right! There is a big new juicy Ratchet and Clank game just around the corner that finally looks like it’s going to be the game that makes good on all those Pixar movie comparisons we have heard every time a new iteration of the franchise gets revealed.
However we are still a few days away from the new game that promises to push the PlayStation 4 to its limits. So what can you do to pass the time until everyone’s favourite Lombax and his mechanical companion make their big next gen debut?
Well you could download the HD Trilogy, which came to the Vita in 2014, safe in the knowledge that our very own Charlie Large gave the classic threesome a dazzling 4.8 stars in his review. But you’ve played those games dozens of times before, if not on your vita then almost certainly on your PS3 or PS2. However I’m willing to bet dollars to donuts you may have passed up on a forgotten little handheld adventure that came to the PSP in 2007. I am of course talking about Ratchet and Clank Size Matters.
R&C Size Matters is near and dear to my heart as it was the first attempt to bring the core Ratchet and Clank experience to Sony’s handheld, and it succeeded phenomenally in every single one of its endeavours. High Impact Games achieved what many thought to be impossible back in the day and managed to cram the full console experience into the palm of your hand.
The premise of Size Matters is a simple one at heart, and although a few twists and turns are introduced in the second act of the game there is nothing here that is reinventing the wheel. It is however a solid cross galaxy romp as our dynamic duo team up with fan favourite Captain Qwark in order to rescue a girl they meet whilst vacationing on Pokitaru and uncover the truth of the Technomites, a race thought to be long extinct.
Although slightly shorter than its console counterparts everything you would expect to be in the action platformer’s arsenal is here in spades. You want the tried and tested run and gun gameplay that the franchise is known for? You’ve got it! How about a varied and incredible armoury of weapons at your disposal including not only classics like the R.Y.N.O but also newcomers such as the Bee Mine? They’re yours baby! Not to mention the game is positively bursting with extra challenges and missions! Fancy fighting as clank in Robot Wars style arena battles? It’s here! Or do you miss the thrill of zipping around the hoverboard course from the first Ratchet and Clank game? Well you’ve guessed it! Hoverboard races make a comeback too!
Seriously, playing this game again in order to refresh my memories of it and see if it has stood the test of time has been a literal and figurative blast. There is so much to see and do you would be forgiven for thinking that this was a port of a full on AAA home console game. Although interestingly it did see an eventual (although lacklustre) port to the PlayStation 2 soon after its release.
Time has done little to diminish the wow factor of having a complete R&C game to take with you wherever you please, and Size Matters plays just as well if not better on the Vita than it ever did. Playing on the Vita now comes with the added bonus to remap the controls in whatever way suits your style of play and the inclusion of a second analogue stick means that this game plays almost perfectly. In fact I would go so far as to say that my only criticism of the game at all is that sometimes the camera can be a bit fiddly and is not always positioned in the most user-friendly position.
So there you have it. This is my argument as to why there has never been a better time to either revisit, or play for the first time, Ratchet and Clank Size Matters. Whether you’re a newcomer to the game or, like me, haven’t picked it up for a few years I think you will be pleasantly surprised at just how well this game has held up. And with all the Ratchet hype doing the rounds at the moment, there really is no better way to whet your appetite.
Ratchet and Clank Size Matters is available to download on the PlayStation Store now!