What do you do when your bestbuddy gets thrown in jail? If you're like most GR editors, you visitlong enough totake some cell phone shots of him in the clink, run back to your Tijuana hotel to post them on your Facebook page, then try to figure out how toget his girlfriend into the sack. Luckily, if this 3D action adventure is any indication, robots are more loyal. When his fuzzy buddy Ratchet gets framed for a jewel heist, the loyal Clank does what anysteel-skinned sidekick would do: he makes like James Bond 007 and knocks heads until things are put right again.
The emphasis is on stealth and sneaking here, as opposed to the bombastic wrench slinging and laser blasting of the main Ratchet & Clank games. Oh sure, there's shooting - jailbird Ratchet and super heroic Captain Quarkbothmake playable cameos, and their levels tend to be more weapon based. AndClanknot onlyknows "Clank-Fu", he also has some destructive gadgets, from his shuriken-like tie-a-rang to exploding cufflinks. Buthe'smuch morecomfortable slinking around, wearing disguises and performing stealthkills (button-press minigames).
Above: That plant used to be a simple boutonniere in Clank's label. Spy gadgets are fun.
It allworks fairlywell, but thefinal package is atoo uneven and disjointed. The arena-like Ratchet levelsget monotonous, but the Captain Quark levels-tall tales about him singing, dancing, and clobbering gigantic monsters- are a high point.The levels starring Clank's Gadgetbots are clever puzzles.Therhythm action minigames that seem to have been shoved into any instancewhere theymade a lick of sense are tedious. Oddly, many of the best bits are optional and many of the worst are mandatory. And once things do start to get more bombastic, you'll notice how limited Clank's arsenal - not to mention the in-game camera - really is.
SecretAgent Clank is stillquite playable, even with these weaknesses -a sub-parRatchet & Clank game is still better than almost any other platform actioner out there - it's just that we expect more out of this series.