Franchise: Ratchet & Clank
One of X weapons and gadgets not fit for this world.
The adventures of Funny Animal
alien Ratchet and his Robot Buddy
Clank as they save the galaxy through Platforming
, Puzzle-solving, and Prodigious Firepower
. The series is developed by Insomniac Games
after they were finished with the first three Spyro the Dragon
games. This series maintains the whimsy and humor of those games, with a kitchen sink of sci-fi elements, and a bunch of Impossibly Cool Weapons
The series so far consists of:
In addition to the above games, there are also two non-canon games released by High Impact Games
Insomniac and DC Comics have a comic book mini-series, with the first issue out in September 2010. It is set after the events of A Crack in Time
. After the defeat of Dr. Nefarious at Great Clock, Qwark is promoted to Galactic President and Ratchet and Clank return home for some rest and relaxation. However, something strange starts to happen, entire planets are beginning to disappear, and the duo discover this to be the handiwork of Artemis Zogg, the planet thief. Word of God also confirms that Lawrence saved Dr. Nefarious from the crashing space station at the last second, and have retreated to a currently unknown location.
Another development is revealed in the final issue, where Tachyon is revealed to be stuck in another dimension after Zogg is stuck there as well.
Alongside the announcement of Resistance
3, Insomniac revealed Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One
, a game that features Co-op play as its main draw, with it being easy to join and leave games at any time. Characters you can play as are Ratchet, Clank, (now Galactic President) Qwark and Dr. Nefarious after they are all captured in a People Zoo, forcing an Enemy Mine situation.Playstation Move Heroes,
, was released where Ratchet and Clank team up with Sly Cooper
and Jak and Daxter
. They're also playable characters in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
After the release of All 4 One, there was announced two Ratchet & Clank games, an HD remake of the first three R&C games (an HD release of Deadlocked
is also available), and a Playstation Store title named Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault
in other countries) which mixes the gameplay of the originals with a Tower Defense
aspect. A new game was announced via teasers on Sony's Facebook, titled Into the Nexus
, which is NOT based on a cancelled previous game. It was released in 2013 on the PS3
, with a budget price.
As per The Wiki Rule
, Ratchet and Clank have their own wiki at Ratchet and Clank Wiki
. There is also a second, independent wiki that is walkthrough-oriented called Ratchetpedia
is set for release in 2015, alongside a remake of the original game
This series contains examples of:
- Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: Not only do several weapons come at rather insane prices, varying on game and level, the demands of the populace to get story-crucial information or gadgets is just plain brutal. It gets to a head in Going Commando:
Ratchet: What?? Now even the COMPUTERS are charging us?! That's it, this galaxy (Bogon) blows.
- All There in the Manual: Many fans and critics didn't know what Ratchet was supposed to be until the later games were released, but the back of the European boxart for the first game clearly called him a Lombax.
- It's also stated in the unlockable concept art of the first game: "Oh, and in case anyone asks you, Ratchet is a Lombax." A Crack In Time tries to make up for this by calling him a Lombax at every opportunity.
- He's also referred to as a lombax several times in Up Your Arsenal, mostly by the announcer of the death matches you can participate in.
- In A Crack in Time, one can listen to a number of radio stations that broadcast music and news; amongst the news items are a few relevant details for long-time fans, including the fate of Angela Cross from Going Commando.
- An unusual example is Ratchet's age, which has only been featured in Jak X: Combat Racing if you had Deadlocked save data on your Memory Card. He's 18 in that game, released at the same time as Deadlocked, so it's possible to work out his age in the other games, too.
- A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far Far Away...: Three Galaxies, if you want to get technical. One line in Tools of Destruction references an "Andromeda System," but that's as close as the script gets to Earth. That is to say, not very. There are a few minor references to Earthly things, though, like Copernicus Leslie Qwark and the Tesla coil (and spikes in A Crack in Time). Orvus also makes a reference to baseball during one of Clank's tutorial levels in A Crack in Time. One of Merc's random comments in Deadlocked is to ask Ratchet if he's read Chaucer.
- The hidden Dan Johnson statue in Into the Nexus has the description stating he "once lived on a primitive planet called 'Earth.'" Being an Easter Egg, it's likely to be a joke rather than canon for the setting.
- Always over the Shoulder: The "Lock-Strafe" mode.
- American Kirby Is Hardcore: The main characters are a little cuter/more disturbing in Japan.
- Or, in this case, Japanese Ratchet is Less Hardcore.
- In the Japanese release of Tools of Destruction, Ratchet has a slightly-altered character model with green clothing, anime eyes, and thick, black eyebrows which brings Ratchet's in-game look into line with the official Japanese art and Ratchet & Clank manga.
- Androids Are People, Too: The robots, like Clank, are treated on the same level as the organic characters.
- The Artifact: The Thruster and Hydropack upgrades in the later games. In the first game, they were mandatory upgrades needed to complete the game, and the Thruster Pack originally had a distinct moveset from the Heli-pack. From Going Commando and onward, it was only treated as cosmetically different from the Heli-pack, and as of A Crack in Time, the Thruster Pack was abandoned altogether. The Hydropack is still used, but rarely due to how sporadic swimming segments are in the later games.
- The Omniwrench has arguably become this in later games. While it was a very practical default weapon in the first game, the abundance of long range, hard hitting and heavily armed foes in the sequels, which mandate the heavy amount of firepower you acquire throughout them, makes the Wrench seem like an emergency weapon, mainly useful for smashing crates.
- Art-Style Dissonance: It doesn't take much looking past the cute, cartoony art style and humor to realize that the entire universe from the ground up is deeply, horrifyingly dysfunctional and has only been getting better at all because the main characters keep killing the worst of the lot.
- Badass Adorable: The eponymous duo.
- Baby Planet
- Bag of Spilling: Averted to some degree, as in the second game Ratchet returns to his apartment and picks up some of the items from the previous game, having memory card data from the previous game allows you to obtain weapons from it, and Clank still has some of his upgrades.
- Played straight in the PS3 games, even though they all take place in the same galaxy and very little time passes between the games.
- Baleful Polymorph: The Morph-O-Ray, the Sheepinator, the Quack-O-Ray, the Boar-Zooker, the Pork Bomb Gun, the Mootator, the Transmorpher, and the Chimp-o-Matic, to date.
- Beam Spam: The RYNO IV locks on to enemies and blasts them with this until you let go of the button, while the Harbinger from Deadlocked is actually the targeting system for an orbital laser that rains down blasts from the sky.
- The Harbinger's lasers might actually come from the things that it shoots into the ground.
- Both are correct in a way. The Harbinger (and later Supernova) shoots out very small satellites that then lock onto the ground, before basically destroying everything on the screen with lasers of death. Those who fully upgrade the weapon get it in Rainbow for extra fun
- Benevolent Architecture: The grindrails certainly count. Even in the parts where there's any practical reason for them at all, they're very conveniently navigable.
- BFG: Way, way too many to count—most games start you off with a basic rapid-fire gun and a slow-firing area effect weapon, but by halfway through you'll be toting half a dozen guns bigger than you are, with effects like "portable black hole launcher, aim away from face" or "fires missiles which split into mini-missiles which launch bomblets that squirt lightning". Then there's the Infinity Plus One Gun...
- Bonus Boss: Several of the optional arena bosses throughout the series, and the final battle with Lord Vorselon in "Crack in Time."
- Boss Banter: Particularly in later entries. Gleeman Vox From Deadlocked, Emperor Tachyon from Tools of Destruction, Klunk from Secret Agent Clank, and Azimuth in A Crack in Time talk up a storm while fighting you.
- The earlier bosses do so, too; however, they do so more between stages of their fight rather than in the middle of it.
- Brawn Hilda: Helga, Qwark's "pleasantly plump" personal fitness trainer.
- Brick Joke: A subtle one. In Up Your Arsenal, in the first vid-comic, it is stated that Qwark fought a crew of "Robotic Pirate Ghosts", which is lampshaded accordingly by the narrator of the comic. Cut to Quest for Booty, guess what you're fighting? That's right, Robotic Pirate Ghosts.
- In Going Commando, a one-off gag mentions "lawn ninjas" (lawn gnomes Dual Wielding katanas). In Up Your Arsenal, lawn gnomes are actual enemies.
- Call a Hit Point a "Smeerp": The series uses "Nanotech" to represent HP. In theory, this means that the characters have nanomites inside their body that will instantly repair any damage taken — until the supply runs out and the character succumbs to their injuries. In practice, this functions identically to a standard health bar.
- Camera Centering
- Captain Ersatz: Courtney Gears is a parody of Britney Spears.
- Captain Superhero: Qwark
- Casual Interstellar Travel: Taking a trip across the galaxy is pretty much the equivalent of driving across town. But of course, realism was not something the developers were aiming for.
- Cat Folk: Lombaxes.
- Cerebus Syndrome: The first five games and Secret Agent Clank are episodic and have little continuity between them. The Future series is a long arc covering two full-length games and one downloadable game and deals with some fairly heavy issues.
- Chainsaw-Grip BFG: Heavier guns tend to have two grips on them. A slight variation in that the second grip is usually on the side. Presumably, it was done in the PS2 games so that Ratchet only has to use one animation for most of the guns, and continued in the PS3 ones because of how it was used throughout the series.
- Chick Magnet: Clank seems to put no effort in attracting half the female NPCs he and Ratchet ever encounter, despite being a robot.
- It's gotta be the voice.
- Well, in the third game he is a movie star.
- Cool, but Inefficient: Given the sheer number of weapons that have appeared in the game, it's unsurprising that some would fall into this category, but special mention should be given to the Hover Bomb Launcher in number 2. It fires a powerful but agonizingly slow moving explosive projectile that must be manually steered to its target. You can't move while the projectile is active, the projectile automatically detonates if Ratchet takes damage, and the camera is fixed looking at Ratchet while it's moving, so you can't use it to attack anything that's out of Ratchet's line of sight. Its flaws are especially noticeable given that the same game features another weapon, the Spider Bot, which functions almost identically to it except that the camera follows the Spider Bot around and can therefore be used to attack enemies while safely away from them.
- Cool Ship
- Ratchet's (stolen) third ship in the first game.
- Ratchet's Star Explorer in Going Commando and Up Your Arsenal.
- The Phoenix in Up Your Arsenal.
- The Aphelion in Tools of Destruction and A Crack in Time.
- Cranial Processing Unit: Played straight with most robots in the series, but the soldier robots on Damosel in the second game can function with only legs.
- Crunchtastic: Well, actually, Qwarktastic, but close enough.
- Curse Cut Short: Klunk disguised as Clank in Up Your Arsenal while the group is at Qwark's memorial service.
- Cute Machines: Clank.
- Damn You, Muscle Memory: Playing all of the games in succession can be an exercise in frustration, as the functions of the shoulder buttons keep changing:
- In the first game, L1 and L2 activate first person mode, and R1 and R2 are crouch (which is used for long jumps, high jumps, and wrench throwing).
- In the second game and third game, L1 is first person mode, R1 is crouch, and L2 and R2 are used for strafing.
- Size Matters is the most infuriating one: L1 is first person mode, R1 is crouch. But unlike in earlier games, crouch in itself is not used for long/high jumps and wrench throwing; one must hold both L1 and R1 together for that.
- In the PS3 games, L2 becomes the solitary strafe button, crouch is moved from R1 to R2, and R1 becomes the fire button. You will kill yourself while trying to long jump over a gap for the first time.
- Darker and Edgier: The move from the first to the second game. Quite apart from the darker level lighting in several levels, Ratchet becomes a commando, he works for a Mega Corp. of dubious moral authority, the thief goes after his friend, there are hired thugs and a psycho hitman out to get him, less cutesy enemies, murderous children's pets that can reproduce within seconds, lots of unfriendly futuristic buildings to explore, and less whimsical musical scores.
- And then of course there's Deadlocked. Ratchet, Clank, and Al are held against their will on a gladiator TV show that features the killings of many famous heroes. If they don't comply, their Deadlock collars will either electrocute them or worse, blow their heads off. Other fun elements include the very dysfunctional relationship between the commentators who slander Ratchet at every turn, and the lengths the villain goes to in order to increase the ratings of the show.
- Deadpan Snarker: Lawrence.
- Death Course: Lampshaded... somewhat.
- Death of a Thousand Cuts: Played straight and avoided in equal measure: some enemies fit this perfectly, others get bits blown off them.
- The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: Many examples. Nearly all weapons have some sort of corresponding NPC commentary, and every enemy dances differently when you use the Groovitron. You can even defeat Nefarious with the Chimpinator/Chimpositron, and he turns into the wind-up monkey used for mechanical enemies (sadly not in the cutscene). In the first game, you can also blow up the Captain Qwark robot at the fitness course with a well-aimed Devastator missile, even though there's no reason to return to this area past the stage of the game where you can get the Devastator. (Except if you're a perfectionist, as one of the skill points requires blowing the robot up.)
- The second game features a good example of just how much the The Dev Team Thinks of Everything in one of the Megacorp weapons facilities. The level opens up with a guided tour of some of their rockets and missiles, where you can accompany a bunch of bots around to learn the history of Megacorp. You can destroy each of the rockets you're seeing, and they all get destroyed in different ways. The second rocket will hurt you if it falls on you, and can kill any enemies and/or tourists it lands on. The third one, the robot version of Mr. Fizzwidget, will tell you "sent Bobo the Squirrel into space" as a test, but they never saw said squirrel again. Blow it up and sure enough, a squirrel will appear. Finally, the last one launches up into space, disappearing completely. Furthermore, protecting all the tourists from the killer squirrels in the area nets you a skill point, but deliberately destroying tourists as they exit the bus (the tour won't start until there's a large enough group ready to go around) means you get a series of increasingly threatening warning messages. However, there's more to it than that. Then, later in the level, you'll encounter a very large and very tough security bot, who you will have a hard time beating with all your weapons, or it will be destroyed by the rocket that launched earlier.
- The Ditz: Captain Qwark in Size Matters.
- Door to Before: All. The. Time.
- Double Caper
- Double Entendre: The titles are clever plays on naughty phrases.
- "Ratchet & Clank", when replacing the & sign with the word "and", has an acronym of RAC, aka rack, which means tits.
- "Going Commando" means not wearing underwear.
- "Up Your Arsenal" is a reference to "up your arse", the British term for ass.
- "Deadlocked" refers to bondage gear.
- "Size Matters" refers to penis size.
- "Secret Agent Clank"'s initials are SAC, aka sack, which means scrotum.
- "Tools of Destruction" is a reference to sex toys or "tool" which means penis.
- "Quest for Booty" is the journey for sex.
- "A Crack in Time" refers to butt cracks.
- "All 4 One" refers to a foursome.
- "Full-Frontal Assault" is pretty obvious.
- The original name for "A Crack in Time" was "Clockblockers". How brilliant would that name have been?
- "Clockblockers" does get used as a skill point name in "Into the Nexus".
- At one point, All 4 One was going to be called "4-Play".
- The working title for "Into the Nexus" used to be "Into the Nether Regions". It was made into a trophy instead.
- This only applies to the American releases, at least for the PS2 games — Going Commando either had no subtitle or was renamed to Locked and Loaded in Europe, and Up Your Arsenal just became Ratchet & Clank 3. Size Matters and the PS3 games have avoided the title changes, however, except for the removal of the "Future" from the PS3 releases.
- Double Jump
- Early Installment Weirdness: The first game is basically from a whole different series from the other two PS2 main titles and the PS3 games.
- Enemy Mine: Why Dr. Nefarious joins up with Ratchet, Clank, and Qwark in All 4 One.
- Everything Makes a Mushroom: The Mini Nuke isn't actually nuclear.
- Lava Adds Awesome: The Lava Gun, natch.
- Equal-Opportunity Evil: Just like the heroic characters, the villains are diverse with a mixture of both robots and organic creatures.
- Evil Laugh: Shown off by most of the main villains at some point or another. Dr. Nefarious gets a particularly impressive one before the final battle in "A Crack in Time".
- Evolving Attack: From the second game onward, weapons gain experience and level up as you use them.
- Exploding Barrels: And crates and streetlights and...
- Fake Difficulty: More often than not, success or failure relies less on skill and more on how big your weapon is. That, plus the fact that despite having armor suits (in later games) that are supposed to reduce damage, some enemies can still finish you off in a few hits.
- The B2 Brawler from Going Commando in the Galactic Gladiators embodies this trope. It's basically a brain on 4 giant legs with dual laser cannons. The lasers are easy to dodge, but your bullets go right through its legs more often than not. It gets really unfair when it lowers itself on the ground, spinning its legs and slowly chasing you down. This isn't so bad in and of itself, but if you get hit, Ratchet will probably fall out of the arena, into the field of electricity, get zapped back up, get smacked by the legs again, and then rinse and repeat until Lombax barbecue has been made. As if that wasn't bad enough, the developers practically rub it in your face by having a Skill Point for defeating it without taking any damage. There are MMORPG Bonus Bosses that are easier than this.
- The above quote still holds here though, the no damage skill point can be achieved relatively easily with judicious use of a big gun. Observe.
- Fake Longevity: This mainly lies in unlocking cheats, and various bonus content, which requires acquiring "skill points" which require the player to accomplish various objectives, but they never tell you what they are, and even then, some skill points require playing "challenge mode" just to unlock said cheats/bonus content, or even to get new weapons (such as the RYNO, which even in regular, non-challenge mode is so expensive in some games, that players might have to resort to farming in order to get it), or even fully upgrade existing weapons.
- Fake Ultimate Hero: Qwark, who later on does try to make a few attempts at becoming a real hero, mainly by tagging along with Ratchet.
- Bizarrely, outside of the main characters, it seems the galaxy at large does still consider Qwark a celebrity superhero — usually because he claims Ratchet and Clank's victories as his own.
- In the comic series, Qwark pulls this on Artemis Zogg, screwing Zogg out of a chance to be Galactic President. In this case, it comes back to haunt everyone, as Qwark's shenanigans are what drives Zogg to villainy.
- First-Person Shooter: Since Going Commando's New Game+, the series has had the option of being played as one.
- Free Rotating Camera: The "Third Person" view.
- Fun with Acronyms: The RYNO, which stands for "Rip Ya a New One".
- Kept in the French version, where it becomes the TELT (T'Eclater La Tronche = Beating Your Face Up)
- In the Italian version they changed it into MIPS (Muori In Pochi Secondi = Die In Few Seconds), but they randomly changed back into the RYNO from the second game on.
- Flanderization: Qwark gets more and more stupid as the series goes on.
- Funny Robot: Clank, Mr. Zurkon, Nefarious, and Lawrence.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: A page for it.
- Giggling Villain: Actually, giggling hero - Clank has a rather creepy, or adorable, depending on what you think of it, laugh.
- He likely got it from his father, Orvus.
- Clank's evil doppelgänger Klunk has a variation of the laugh that actually is creepy.
- Girl of the Week: Though Sasha, his love interest from the third game, has a brief cameo at the beginning of the fourth.
- Global Currency: Even the people over in the other two galaxies use Bolts. Though they're shiny golden bolts that look like currency from R&C2 onward, rather than the large, prosaic bolt-ish ones of the first game, and undergo more insane inflation in each and every game.
- Examples of the inflation (which may or may not be intended by the developers): in the first game the R.Y.N.O., the most expensive weapon, cost 150,000 bolts (which was considered an insane number that most people would not acquire in one playthrough), while the most expensive weapon in Going Commando, the Zodiac, cost 1,500,000 bolts. In perhaps the most extreme example, the Ryno IV's weapon upgrade in the New Game+ for Tools of Destruction costs 50,000,000 bolts.
- Grappling-Hook Pistol: Various forms throughout the games.
- Grind Boots: Trope Namer.
- Harmless Freezing: Enemies in Deadlocked frozen with the Freeze Mod will break out and continue fighting if left unattended.
- In A Crack in Time, a new weapon, the Cryomine glove, can freeze enemies and you can visibly see icicles forming on their bodies. However, this weapon easily deals the least amount of damage of all weapons in the game. (Even the Groovitron deals damage when fully upgraded.)
- Well, most of them were robots.
- Heroic BSOD: Ratchet gets one after Qwark tries to kill him in 1. He's eventually pulled out of it by the realization that if he doesn't stop Chairman Drek, no one will.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Alister Azimuth at the end of A Crack in Time. See Redemption Equals Death down below.
- Ratchet makes one prior to the fight with Tachyon in Tools of Destruction, albeit without his death — Tachyon opens a portal with the Dimensionator to the Lombaxes' current location and tells Ratchet that he can stay and die, or go through the portal and meet the rest of his species. Ratchet stays, knowing that Tachyon will just kill his friends once he's through the portal and that he can't trust Tachyon not to come after him and kill the rest of the Lombaxes later.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: Ratchet and Clank.
- Hyperspace Arsenal
- Lampshaded in many battle arenas where the announcer asks how Ratchet can carry all his weapons.
- Iconic Sequel Character: Doctor Nefarious came about in the third game, Up Your Arsenal, yet he's since become the series' most recognizable villain, even being made playable in All 4 One along with series mainstay, Captain Qwark and the titular duo.
- Impossibly Cool Weapon: The games are even hyped on this trope.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: The Chopper from Going Commando. It's basically a shuriken gun that costs only 5,000 bolts, basically chump change, that can be bought really early in the game. The shuriken that it fires then will do loop-do-loops, phase out of reality, go through map geometry, and give my physics teacher a hernia, to hit opponents. After it hits an enemy 3 times (any enemy will do, it's not picky), it disappears. I've even seen the thing do a complete 180 with no change in speed whatsoever, it literally reversed momentum, just to hit the enemy it was tracking. It gets worse when you get the upgrade, which splits into three upon hitting an enemy, and then even worse with Up Your Arsenal's equivalent upgrade, which can split into as many as sixteen, all with equally insane tracking skills.
- Inevitable Tournament: Every game from Going Commando onwards features at least one, including the entirety of Deadlocked.
- Infinity Plus One
Sword Gun: One final, ridiculously powerful gun in each game: RYNO, RYNO II, RY3NO/RYNOCERATOR, Harbinger/Supernova, RYNO IV/RYNO 4-EVER, RYNO V/MEGA RYNO V, RYNO VI Protosuit...
- The Golden Groovitron. Infinite uses of a disco ball that stops everything from attacking in range, except for Tachyon, Kerchu Guardian (They are stopped for far less time than normal), and dropships. Simply put, it can turn the game into a cakewalk. It does cost so much that by the time you get it, it's just a time saver.
- In-Series Nickname: Since Tools of Destruction, Cronk and Zephyr seem to have dubbed Ratchet 'Rookie'. Occasionally, they'll shorten it to 'Rook'.
- Definitely an In-Series Nickname, bordering on Affectionate Nickname — Ratchet's been fond of calling Clank 'Pal' instead of saying his name for a long time, now. The 'Affectionate' part becomes rather obvious in A Crack in Time.
- Interspecies Romance: All of Ratchet's love interests except Angela (although he only showed interest in one) plus Qwark mating with a one-eyed monkey.
- Involuntary Dance: The Groovitron.
- It's a Small World After All
- Joke Item: Though unintentionally so, most of the recurring Ratchet & Clank weapons in Going Commando certainly qualify, if only for the fact that they're so freaking useless. It seems that Insomniac forgot to scale their power with the new weapons', so what you've basically got is a Visibomb Gun, a weapon that could take out almost any non-boss in a single hit in the first game, that takes at least two shots to down a medium-powered Mook in the second game. As a result, the only returning weapon that has any use at all is the Decoy Glove, since it's the only one that was never intended to be used offensively in the first place. Up Your Arsenal takes it in the opposite direction by making the recurring weapons from Going Commando extremely overpowered and also allowing them to upgrade the same way as the others.
- Kent Brockman News: Darla Gratch of Channel
2 64 News in the first three games, Dallas and Juanita in Deadlocked, Kip Darling and Pepper Fairbanks in A Crack in Time.
- Killer Rabbit: Ratchet himself could qualify, as he's a cute little furry cat... thing with a very, very, big arsenal. The Protopets from Going Commando are another example, considering they're basically carnivourous, foul tempered tribbles.
- Large Ham: In pretty much any scene with Dr. Nefarious in it, expect there to be a lot of scenery chewing. Lord Vorselon in A Crack in Time has his moments as well.
Clank: "Is (Vorselon) always this dramatic?"
Ratchet: "Yeah, it's kinda his schtick."
- Lantern Jaw of Justice: Captain Qwark.
- Laughably Evil: Dr. Nefarious is this in spades. Every time he gets hammy, he'll likely malfunction and play a soap opera until one big knock to his head gets him back into consciousness.
- Level-Map Display: All the games have a map that you can look at when the game is paused. Each game also has a Map-O-Matic/Mapper gadget you can find, which makes said map also show secret areas.
- Macross Missile Massacre: The R.Y.N.O.
- Malevolent Architecture: Present in all the games, although especially absurd in Secret Agent Clank.
- Mascot with Attitude: In spades.
- Medium Awareness: After slightly denting the Fourth Wall on a couple of prior occasions, the Plumber really presses against it in Tools of Destruction, as he "almost didn't recognize [Ratchet and Clank] in high-def", referring to the fact that the Plumber was wearing glasses (which he had never worn before).
- Captain Slag further demolishes it in Quest For Booty, accusing Ratchet of unplugging his controller during their boss fight in the previous game.
- "After several lucky shots and a few cheat codes..."
- Klunk also yelled at Clank saying "No fair, you cheated!" when you beat him.
- Dr. Nefarious gets a good one in A Crack in Time: Initiate super-wavy flashback effect!
- In Going Commando, after Ratchet and Clank fail to catch up with Angela again, they take a few seconds to wonder why they're always late. They both proceed to look at the player accusingly.
- Miles Gloriosus: Qwark.
- Monster Arena: Gladiator Games and Megacorp Games in Going Commando, Annihilation Nation in Up Your Arsenal, the entire fricking game in Deadlocked, the Imperial Fight Festival in Tools of Destruction, Ratchet's segments in Secret Agent Clank, the Battleplex in A Crack in Time.
- More Dakka: And then some.
- The Musketeer: Ratchet wields his trusty omniwrench on top of his Hyperspace Arsenal. It's quite useful early in the game, though it gets less and less relevant as things progress.
- Due to the way the hit points system operated in the first game, it was possible - though sometimes difficult - to progress through the whole game using only the wrench. In later installments, it receives a number of upgrades to ensure that it remains useful for puzzle-solving even after it becomes redundant as a weapon.
- Name and Name
- Nanomachines: Used as healing items as well as the characters' health.
- New Game+: Exists in every game except Quest for Booty - you keep all weapons, bolts, and some gadgets and items, but lose everything else. From Going Commando onwards it's known as Challenge Mode and features a few more twists - the enemies are tougher, it's easier to score higher numbers of bolts, and you can purchase further upgrades for your weapons.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Zombie robots, ninja robots, zombie ninja robots, lawn ninjas, robot pirates, robot pirate ghosts — the list goes on.
- No Indoor Voice: Dr. Nefarious neatly combines this with Large Ham.
- Old Save Bonus: You can often get weapons from previous games for free if you have a save from that game with the weapon obtained.
- Particularly interesting is Up Your Arsenal which doubles as a continuity bonus - you run into Slim Cognito who'll sell you Megacorp weapons from the previous game at a reduced rate because you're a "regular customer", and you'll receive a discount on Gadgetron weapons if you have a complete Ratchet & Clank save. Near the end of the first game, Ratchet and Clank actually get a job as publicists for Gadgetron devices, and are told that the employee discount won't kick in for two years - when, in real time, the third game was released.
- With A Crack In Time, you'll earn discounts in the weapon shop if you've completed Tools of Destruction, and a pirate hat for Ratchet if you've completed Quest for Booty.
- One Lombax Army: And he has the weapons to count for it, too!
- Pass Through the Rings: Going Commando, Deadlocked, and Tools of Destruction.
- Planet of Hats: Most alien races seem to be homogenized groups who all do one particular thing. Terachnoids are brainy geeks, Grummels are merchants, even Lombaxes themselves are all inventors.
- Planet Ville
- Power-Up Magnet: Some games have an upgrage that increases the range at which you pick up bolts.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!:
- Ratchet's "There are. No. TECHNOMITES!!" in Size Matters when they come across a so-called Technomite artifact.
- And in Deadlocked when you're battling Vox, at one point the announcer says to Juanita, "Don't pretend that you care...YOU...NEVER...CARED!"
- Punny Name: Slim Cognito, Otto Destruct.
- Purposely Overpowered: The RYNO in every game it appears in. In each game it varies from firing a cluster of powerful missles or rapid-firing missiles, but it's always capable of putting many enemies down very quickly.
- Real Time Weapon Change: When the "Quick Select" menu is not set to pause when using.
- Recurring Traveller: The Plumber, lampshaded in the fourth game where he doesn't show up and is mentioned in the credits as such. A lesser example would be The Smuggler, who appears in all three of the "Future" games.
- Rewarding Vandalism: Almost everything can be smashed. Smashing almost anything gives you at least a few bolts. This means that randomly tossing explosives at scenery can result in profit.
- Just the opposite in the Great Clock, where you fix broken things.
- Ridiculously Human Robots: Where to begin?
- Robot Buddy: Clank.
- RPG Elements: From the second game onwards, you and your weapons gain experience and level up, gaining more health and power in the process.
- Running Gag: Several, such as "No <animals of the game> were harmed in the making of this game.", the inclusion of Dan Johnson (before it became out of respect), Dr. Nefarious malfunctioning, Dr. Nefarious yelling someone's name (usually Lawrence or Qwark), Qwark's crudely drawn "plans," et cetera.
- The "No <animals of the game> were harmed" message takes it even further, being a gag in the credits for the original Spyro trilogy before Ratchet and Clank!
- The Great Clock is located in the exact center of the universe!...give or take fifty feet.
- Attention is only called to it once — by Nefarious — but the series has a habit of stranding characters on asteroids in the middle of space. Nefarious and Lawrence in UYA (shown again in Deadlocked and referenced in ACiT), Tachyon in ToD, Qwark at the end of ACiT, and then Artemis Zogg at the end of the comic series, on the same asteroid as Tachyon, no less. Technically, it's happened to Ratchet and Clank, too, in the "Super Ironic Death Scenario" sense.
- Sawn Off Shotgun/Short-Range Shotgun: The double barrel mod in A Crack In Time turns your Constructo Shotgun into this, doubling the spread at the cost of range. The Choke Barrel does the opposite.
- Scenery Porn: Each planet from Going Commando onwards begins with the camera positioned to make a striking tableau of the starting area.
- The very first trailer for Tools of Destruction was nothing more than the camera showing off HD, PS3-era Metropolis before panning to show the Ratchet & Clank logo on a blimp.
- Score Multiplier: They've done this since the second game. The New Game+ mode gives a bolt multiplier that lasts until Ratchet takes damage.
- Servile Snarker: Lawrence, full-on. He takes Nefarious' crap with stride and passive-aggressiveness.
- Sharing a Body: Captain Slag and Captain Darkwater in Quest For Booty.
- Ratchet & Clank uses at least parts of the game engine from Jak and Daxter. As such, both series frequently make shout outs to each other.
- One of the best comes on planet Damosel in Going Commando when Ratchet and Clank perform same dance that Jak and Daxter did whenever they found a Power Cell in The Precursor Legacy. Numerous posters of the duo are also found throughout the game.
- Another clear one comes in Up Your Arsenal when Al informs Ratchet that he'll need to travel to planet Daxx (which is Daxter's nickname in Jak and Daxter series) - upon hearing the name, Ratchet pauses and says it to himself.
- Jak is an unlockable skin in Deadlocked (and Ratchet is an unlockable racer in Jak X: Combat Racing).
- And to another Naughty Dog franchise, when Qwark suggests "A leisurely stroll through this Uncharted jungle."
- In Ratchet: Deadlocked, Green, a combat robot, sometimes yells "Wolverines!" while fighting. A literal Shout-Out to the movie Red Dawn (1984) (1984).
- After defeating Captain Slag in Tools of Destruction, Rusty Pete offers Ratchet a "gimmicky pirate name" since the code apparently says Ratchet is Captain now:
- In A Crack in Time, The Plumber appears before Clank in a dream sequence, standing in front of a familiar looking green pipe which he encourages Clank to enter. Clank asks if the Plumber is coming too, but the Plumber points out that jumping down every pipe you see would be a ridiculous thing for a plumber to do.
- Due to A Crack in Time having a lot to do with time-travel, the PS3 trophy you get for beating it is called 88 MPH.
- Also in A Crack in Time:
- In the same vein, the AI from All 4 One's training ground acts a lot like GLaDOS, down to damning the PCs with faint praise and making idle threats.
- On a similar note, more than one villain asks if/how the heroes are "Still Alive" — sometimes several times in a row.
- Also a different AI, at one point, lies about cake.
- And again in A Crack in Time. Qwark's infiltration plan relies on a conveniently-exposed thermal exhaust port. While trying to pull it off, you're nearly crushed in a smelly, watery trash compactor.
- Mr. Zurkon refers to robotic enemies as "toasters."
- A Crack in Time has quite a few. After you beat the game, Lord Vorselon taunts you by revealing that he is your father's... accountant.
- In Deadlocked, there's a combat jeep quite similar to Halo's Warthog...called the Puma.
- And, yet again from A Crack In Time: "That's CAPTAIN Qwark. I didn't take a two-week hero correspondence course just so I could be called 'Mister.'"
- The robots in the opening stage of Up Your Arsenal quote a number of lines from the Alien series. Including Stay Frosty and "Game over man!" from Aliens.
- Deadlocked had one Ace Hardlight, a reference you might not get unless you're up on your British sci-fi comedies.
- Yet another possible one from A Crack in Time: Lord Vorselon is an evil alien with green skin, pointed ears, prominent fangs, and a single large eye, and he's always seen with a glass dome encasing his head. In other words, he looks an awful lot like Kang or Kodos.
- "Clank, I don't think we're in the Solana Galaxy anymore."
- The name of the comics' first issue is "Ears of War".
- Probably unintentional, but there's also this from the comic series:
- Show Within A Game: Secret Agent Clank, which plays a large role in the third game and is the basis for the duo's second PSP venture.
- Also, the Captain Qwark-themed Games Within a Game in Up Your Arsenal.
- And DreadZone from Deadlocked, of course.
- There are dozens of others mentioned in dialogue, and many commercials for these shows are used to introduce new planets via Infobots and telescreens.
- Single-Biome Planet
- Soap Within a Show: "Lance & Janice", which Dr. Nefarious is prone to broadcasting when he breaks down.
- Space Opera: Especially in later games.
- Squishy Wizard: Clank is essentially one in his solo gameplay sequences - low HP, physically weak, and needs to rely on special abilities or commandable allies. (Somewhat ironic considering that "squishy" is an in-game nickname/insult for organic lifeforms...)
- Standard FPS Guns: Along with the crazy stuff like portable black hole launchers and devices that make your enemies dance uncontrollably, Ratchet's weaponry in each game usually includes a
knife wrench, a pistol (which eventually becomes an automatic), a grenade launcher, a rocket launcher, a shotgun, a gun that turns your enemies into animals, and the RYNO — with the occasional sniper rifle or flamethrower thrown in. These guns usually also have their own quirks, such as ricocheting bullets or buckshot that freezes your enemies. And then explodes.
- Stealth Insult: Pretty much any other line Lawrence has about his boss.
"If there's anyone equipped to beat an utter moron at his own game, it's you, sir."
"Even drooling imbeciles can achieve success in certain fields, sir. Mad science, for example."
"You put the wit in twit, sir."
- Stuff Blowing Up: Oh boy, is there ever.
- Stylistic Suck: Captain Qwark's "video-comics" in Up Your Arsenal, and the "My Blaster Runs Hot" arcade machine in A Crack in Time.
- Averted with the Space Invaders and Asteroids mini-games (with sheep) in Going Commando, which use the same modern graphics and sound effects as the main game despite featuring intentionally retro gameplay.
- Tempting Fate: The writers love to punish those who tempt fate. Even Qwark's managed to catch on by A Crack in Time:
Qwark: The key to surviving situations like this is to avoid phrases like "It's too quiet in here" or "Everything is going to be alright".
- Though he goes ahead and does it to himself again later in the game...
Qwark: It usually results in catastrophe when I say this but, what the hey? Mission Accomplished!
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill: About two thirds of every weapon in the series.
- Third-Person Person: Mr. Zurkon from Tools of Destruction and A Crack in Time.
- Time Police: The Zoni, to some degree.
- Top-Heavy Guy: Qwark.
- Tornado Move: In Ratchet And Clank Future: Tools of Destruction one of the weapons is called the Tornado Launcher, a controllable tornado that sucks in any enemy and debris in its path.
- Totally Radical: Skidd McMarxx personifies this trope - his ship is even called the Solarship Radical.
- Unreliable Narrator: Many times throughout the series, we find out about Qwark's latest endeavours via animations scripted and narrated by Qwark himself — needless to say, there's very little truth in Qwark's own words, though the accompanying images usually show the true story.
- Urban Legend of Zelda: Every so often, a troll will show up on Ratchet fan forums claiming to have found an Insomniac Museum in a game that doesn't have one. Typically, you would need to do a nearly or outright impossible task to 'find' it, like making it to the end of the bridge that gets blown up in Metropolis in Tools of Destruction. Such claims have died out after A Crack in Time had its museum accessible just for beating Vorselon (or even as a pre-order bonus!).
- Video Game Achievements: The skill points, acquired by performing certain feats in the game. Most of the time the game tells you nothing about them until you actually do them; only Deadlocked and All 4 One give you the requirements beforehand.
- Video Game Flamethrowers Suck: They've been getting better with each subsequent game. The Pyrocitor in the first game is your standard video game flamethrower: weak, short-ranged, and not very useful. The Lava Gun in the later games acts like a real-life flamethrower, and is consequently quite effective.
- The Pyroblaster in Tools of Destruction functions just like the Pyrocitor... but does so much damage you won't care.
- The Pyrocitor itself was actually an aversion of this trope... at the start of the game. Since most enemies were mostly weak anklebiters with pathetic range early game and your weapon choices were limited, the Pyrocitor was a rather effective way at spewing your own Instant Death Radius. Unfortunately, enemy health and range grew throughout the game, and the later weapons that you bought left the Pyrocitor in the dust.
- The Scorcher in "Size Matters" starts out similar to the Pyrocitor, but once you level it up enough, it becomes the Incinerator and gets a dramatically increased range and power boost, and you can make it even more powerful with the Sunflare and Spitfire mods.
- Video Game Flight
- In Going Commando, you gain access to the Levitator which allows you to fly anywhere... but you can only take off from special pads, and your fuel decreases rapidly every time you ascend.
- And from the same game, the Glider lets you fly forever — but again, it's only used in certain locations, and it can't be used to fly upwards unless you want to stall and crash.
- In Tools of Destruction, the Robo-Wings let you fly anywhere without hindrance, but they're only used in a few stages, and even then you can usually only use them after you've already cleared most of the area.
- Clank's Jetpack attachment in Into The Nexus allows you to fly infinitely as long as you have fuel, which you must restock. Notably, you're able to fire while using it, allowing for kickass dogfight segments.
- Video Game Trophies: The Skill Points present in every game of the series can be considered an ancestor of the Trophies − entirely optional challenges with memetic or punny titles, that offer no reward but the satisfaction of succeeding. Except in Up Your Arsenal, where completing them all is one condition to access the Insomniac Museum.
- Villainous Breakdown: Dr. Nefarious is prone to literal breakdowns. Whenever he gets too angry or excited, his robotic brain overheats, causing him to seize up and begin broadcasting soap operas. It takes a hard whack to the head (usually courtesy of Lawrence) to get him back to normal.
- Villains Out Shopping: Your enemies seem to have a large number of hobbies. For example, Dr. Nefarious — when not plotting organic genocide or universal domination — obsessively watches Secret Agent Clank, plays video games, rehearses his epic romantic action comedy space opera, calls in to radio shows to bitch about the season finale of his favorite soap opera, and hooks up with the leader of a robotic Amazon Brigade.
- Weapons That Suck: The Suck Cannon.
- Don't forget the Rift Inducer in the third game (in A Crack in Time, it was changed so that it opened a portal for an Eldritch Abomination to grab enemies).
- Whip It Good: Plasma/Quantum Whip in Up Your Arsenal, Lightning Ravager in Tools of Destruction.
- The Wiki Rule: Here.