Ruff Trigger: The Vanocore Conspiracy
|Editor Rating:||5/10, based on 1 review|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
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At first I entertained the idea of reviewing Ruff Trigger without ever mentioning Sony's popular Ratchet & dank franchise. It would have gone something like this: "A cuddly yet cocksure hero jumping and shooting his way through futuristic worlds? How original!" But my penchant for humorous irony subsided after I actually played through this unfathomably derivative platformer. Now, if you're going to make a bargain-basement Ratchet & Clank rip-off, you should at least pilfer all the good parts. Ruff successfully apes the basic framework but omits all of the crucial details that make it such a great game. While Clank sports sharp writing and lovable heroes, Trigger otters ugly characters, unfunny writing, and hideous cut-scenes (which look eerily like those crappy Academy of Art commercials MTV luns & 3 a .m.). Plain-Jane visuals and haphazard controls (iffy collision detection causes plenty of cheap deaths) make it look and feel worse than even the first Ratchet, and the inability to purchase ammo or upgrade your weapons is simply inexcusable. Sure, it's only S20, and kids will probably dig the suite of simple unlockable minigames, but all four of the Ratchet titles blow away this wannabe.
This game is the poster child for budget titles. As Shane ably points out, Ruff Trigger blatantly copies characters, ideas, and motifs from other games. The levels are solid, but besides the racing portions, nothing stands out. You can get lots of guns, sure, but you'll rarely use any but the first two. The transformation feature--which should have been cool--is so unbalanced that you never really need to go back to your original, nonpowered-up-beast form. Amidst the rest of the monotony, you'll collect lots of glowing icons by smashing an endless number of crates, unlock a few minigames that you'll never play, and watch lame cut-scenes--complete with spelling errors in the subtitles. Ruff Trigger isn't a bad game--it's just obnoxiously average.
Have you ever wondered if maybe an alternate universe exists where everything is the same, except that Ratchet & Clank is actually a mostly mediocre game with unlikable characters (including a hypersexualized Siamese cat with absolutely pendulous mammaries) and annoying racing segments (I have no idea what Jay's thinking) with a vehicle prone to popping like a soap bubble? I woke up in that universe today, apparently, and I want to go home. Jay right on in saying that RuffTriggerisn't offensively bad, and sure, it's a S20 budget game, but do some legwork and you'll find plenty of things for S20. For instance: most of the Ratchet & Clank games, of which there are already too damn many.