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Sep 8, 2008

Review: Secret Agent Clank

Secret Agent Clank
SCEA, High Impact Games
Available for Playstation Portable.

While James Bond fans have to wait patiently for their new videogame, Quantum of Solace from Activision to come out, I have another super slick spy to keep their trigger fingers busy.

Secret Agent Clank, which is set in the Ratchet & Clank universe after Size Matters, but before Future: Tools of Destruction, pokes fun at the Bond franchise as you follow Clank, the robotic agent with a license to kill, on a secret mission to save his superhero partner, Ratchet.

Clank while on a mission to halt a major jewel theft at the Boltaire Museum, witnesses his buddy Ratchet fleeing from the scene of the crime. Ratchet though is quickly found and arrested for the jewel theft and you as Clank must track down the missing jewel in order to prove your friend innocent and spring him from jail.

Unlike other R&C games, Clank's gameplay is now more like Ratchet's in that you can attack enemies and use weapons and gadgets. Clank also has the ability to sneak through areas, take down enemies or dance for his life by repeating a sequence of buttons on the screen.

Clank's arsenal of weaponry in this game reads much like a list of Q's favourite toys. From tie-a-rang to a blowtorch briefcase, Clank has a little of everything to play with from the vault of the Bond gadgets. Clank can even upgrade his Clank-Fu moves throughout to help him take down bigger enemies.

Having never played a Ratchet & Clank game before, I was quite impressed with the game's humour and great game play. The controls were easy to pick up and I love taking down enemies with Clank's cool little gadgets.

Throughout the levels, you change between playing Clank, Ratchet and Captain Qwark who each have their own type of challenges to complete. Clank's levels were more platforming, puzzle solving and follow the button sequence challenges, while Ratchet's levels were just arenas filled with tons of enemies trying to kill him and Qwark's levels were based on the adventures he regales to his little reporter friend. One of his levels had you battling a giant Godzilla monster after Qwark magically grew in size.

While the Qwark and Clank levels were quite fun and addictive to play through, Ratchet's levels felt repetitive and impossible to complete. I died more often in those levels than any other. The enemies tend to come at you way too fast and Ratchet is soon overwhelmed before he can even get to a health orb.

The 3D animation style graphics are perfect for games like this and really add to fun in the game. Best of all, despite the cartoon style of the game, both young adults and adults can enjoy this series because it has such great game play, wonderful storylines and such charming characters. Clank especially works so well as the James Bond type character.

The voice acting in the game is quite delightful and it makes the characters all the more interesting to play through the game with. Clank’s voice such has a neat intellectual sound to it and when he makes those clever Bond remarks, it fits so perfectly into the spy character. The James Bond type theme playing throughout the game really adds to the whole Bond parody and makes snowboarding away from the enemy's secret lair all the more fun.

While I couldn’t wait for each of Ratchet’s levels to finish, I must admit the rest of Secret Agent Clank is a fun and addictive game. Bond fans might get a kick out of the few references to the famous spy series and enjoy taking down bad guys will razor sharp bow ties. Each level in the game is short enough too that it makes for a great on-the-go game. Ratchet & Clank is definitely another classic franchise that I am glad to have finally played and would recommend it as an excellent purchase.

Rating: 8 out 10
Buy it!

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