Secret Agent Clank

Akshat Jiwan Sharma, Tue Apr 29 2014

let's get dangerous

Secret Agent Clank was the second game developed by High Impact games for the P.S.P, their first being successful Ratchet and clank Size Matters. As the title probably suggests this game stars Clank as a secret agent. Much like Jak in Daxter, Ratchet is locked up in prison and Clank has to find a way to save him while carrying out his other “duties”, he is a secret agent after all! The game had a nice concept and developers at High Impact Games put some neat ideas into the product, but ultimately the game fell short of public expectations and was chastised by both the critics and the fans. The major criticism being that this game was way too different from the previous installments in the series and took too many liberties in the design and game play to be considered canon. They were probably right too, I am no expert on Ratchet and Clank games and have played only one game in the series Size Matters (loved it to death though) which is probably why I enjoyed the game as much as I did. I shall enumerate below the things that I loved about the game and hopefully someone who has not played it would give it a shot . Here goes-:

to infinity and beyond

Quark: - Quark is an egoistic boastful giant that was first introduced in ratchet and clank as an antagonist but in later games became innocuous joke character, and was mainly used for funny quips and some mini games (for some reason Quark reminds me of lauchpad from the Darkwing Duck series). Size matters added a bit more back story, but it is in secret agent clank that he truly shines. He is aiding a writer in writing his biography and as expected of him he exaggerates trifles and fabricates numerous fictitious accounts of his bravery. Imaginative folks at High impact games created wonderful levels where you can play as Quark in his invented skirmishes with monsters and con men and what not. These levels are very creative , fun to play and hilarious. A particular one, where quark beats up baddies while singing a ballad, is a personal favorite of mine. For me Quark is the number one reason to play this game.

where are my men!

Level Design:- The levels in Secret Agent Clank are very well designed. They are vibrant and popping with color, much like any other ratchet and clank game, though they are a lot more interactive this time around. For instance the level where you have to follow the con man while disposing his goons without arousing his suspicion is the one that stands out. Here is what happens. You have to follow this con man and attempt to gain more details on the robbery that took place on that fateful night which lead to ratchet's arrest. But the trouble is he is guarded at all times. So before you can get close to him it is important to get rid of his goons. To do this you divert their attention by creating noise in the background and when the guards would come to examine the noise Clank could easily dispose them off using his clank-fu technique. Of course not all segments require you to be surreptitious. Heavy doses of action are still present, and the game progress much in the same way as other ratchet game, but these stealth levels provide a nice freshness nonetheless adding to what can be done with clank as a main character.

Story: - The story in this game succeeds in portraying clank as a suave, debonair, suit wearing secret agent, saving the world while trying to vindicate his friend, rather than just an accessory in Ratchets' inventory. As expected this comes with taking digs at numerous spy films but after playing this game you will know for sure how do agents manage to win the game at cards no matter how bad their position is (Hint: They have their trusty Gadgetbots at their side :). It is remarkable that how much this game has changed my perception of clank. I wish that the main games in the series had put a bit more effort on clank and fleshed him out a bit.

Dialogue:- This game is incredibly funny and it's not just toilet humor at that, intelligent and subtle quips gives life to the characters and even a supposedly insignificant role like that of the jail warden is treated with care. I found myself putting my psp down and laughing several times during my playthrough.

I know that to long time fans Secret agent Clank will be a black sheep, something that was not even developed by the original devs, but if you give it time the game will grow on you and before long you will find yourself pulling off those stealth kills and dancing to those absurd button pushes. Believe me this game did not deserve the flak that it got. And I am really glad that I played this game.

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