Ratchet & Clank

Ratchet and Clank [PS2 – Beta]

Ratchet and Clank was the first game in a series that would become a cash cow for Insomniac Games. The main goal of the game, is to blow up anything that moves, while exploring large levels for hidden items. The series is also known for it’s comical approach, with weapons such as the Morph -o- Ray, which turns enemies into chickens. There were some changes made to the final game however, one of which, involves the farm friendly foul.

In this video, can be seen what appears to be a mashup of different betas. To start with, at 0:22, it’s rather fast, but pause it and you’ll see the beta bolt meter, but in the top left part of the screen. In all Ratchet games, it’s in the top RIGHT. It can be seen there in another part of the video, but also in it’s proper place as well. At 0:49 can be seen a strange weapon icon, a no chickens sign. The HUD is still beta here, and the no chicken sign is too.  

Ratchet Deadlocked [PS2 – Beta]

Ratchet Deadlocked (Ratchet: Gladiator in PAL regions, also known as Ratchet & Clank 4) is an arena style shooter from Insomniac games, released on 10/25/05 for the Playstation 2. This game strayed the most from the standard gameplay of the Ratchet and Clank series, being the first and only Ratchet game to be based upon the idea of arena fights instead of exploration.

Combat bots at one point were supposed to have legs instead of their hover base. This changed how they affect gameplay, mainly because flying lets them get a better angle than they could by walking. Also to be seen here, is that when given a command, that command appears above their heads. This can be seen at the very start of the video. The combat bot on the left to be precise. Also here, is a beta version of the ammo crate. It’s orange here, but the final version is green. And also, the ammo refills are the Gadgetron ones, and they are cylinder shaped. The final versions, are more box shaped, and green and black in color. Finally, notice that Ratchet has two combat bots here, and rescues a third. It is not known if the third battle bot would have affected gameplay or not.

Evan Hanley found even more differences in the early trailers shown at E3 and Tokyo Game Show:

  • The Eviscerator lacked his leg pads.
  • Ace Hardlight has a different missile glove.
  • The combat bots had legs at one point.
  • The Landstalker had different missile sound effects.
  • The HUD was different.
  • The health bar was different.
  • The weapon icons look slightly different.
  • The number text for the health bar, ammo and bolts was different.
  • The minimap is different.
  • The robot ability box is a different shape.
  • There is no level text for the weapons.
  • The EXP text is different.
  • The EXP bar is smaller and harder to see.
  • The Weapon EXP bar is different and in a different position.
  • The Landstalker’s health bar is different.
  • The Flail Whip has no hit sound effect.
  • The Electric Mine Launcher has a different sound effect.
  • Ratchet doesn’t grunt when hit.

The Online Multiplayer footage has pretty much the same differences as the Tokyo Game Show Trailer but has different HUDs and activity texts for different modes.

Thanks to Evan for the contribution! 

Ratchet & Clank 3: Up Your Arsenal [PS2 – Beta]

Ratchet & Clank 3: Up Your Arsenal is a platform / third person shooter developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony. It is the third installment in the Ratchet & Clank series and was released in November 2004. [Info from Wikipedia]

Bowsersenemy was able to notice various differences in the early beta screens and in some videos:

  • The upgraded version of the N60 storm, used the icon from the Lancer from RAC 2. The whole weapon status meter is from RAC 2!
  • In another beta screen the N60 had the icon of the second form Lancer, with LESS max ammo than before!
  • A beta screenshot of the multiplayer mode
  • Some removed enemies
  • A removed wrench weapon
  • Holostar studios mission was set in the evening, while the final version is in the day.
  • Qwark vid comics had beta timer, beta life bar, and beta Q token counter (bottom right corner)

Ratchet & Clank: A Crack in Time [PS3 – Beta]

Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time is a platform / shooter game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony in october / november 2009. As in other R&C games, to learn more about A Crack in Time’s development and its beta differences the team added a nice bonus to unlock in the form of the “Insomniac Moon” (unlocked after collecting all the Zoni and fighting a secret boss). As we can read from an article at Press the Buttons:

[…] a 3D recreation of the Insomniac offices in the form of a museum that serves as a tribute to and exhibit of all kinds of interesting objects, enemies, levels, and basic design features that did not actually make it into the main game.

[…] From the moment players guide Ratchet into the museum, it’s apparent that something special is going on here. While the area sports a minimalistic design, the real stars are the deleted and unfinished materials. Wander around the place and it’s not long before you’ll stumble on a guided missile weapon that uses flaming birds as ammo. Then there’s a set of crates that pay out special bonuses depending on how Ratchet whacks them with his Omniwrench. Want to have a look at a flying space monster that involved animation too complex to work into the environment in which he was meant to patrol? The museum can offer that.

[…] The best surprise inside the museum is that several of the cut level elements are playable. There’s a hoverboot race that was originally planned for the Agorian Battleplex, and checking out its exhibit space leads to being able to race through the semi-completed environment. There’s also an additional Great Clock platforming puzzle originally meant for Clank and another dropped Battleplex element that involved a procedurally generated obstacle course.

Huge props to Insomniac! If more studios could share this kind of bonus in their games, it would be easier to preserve the cuts and the changes in the development.

A couple of videos of the Insomniac Moon can be found on Youtube, but if someone could be able to record more footage of the area and take some direct-feed screens of all that beta-stuff, it would be nice!

Thanks to Robert Seddon and Bowserenemy for the contributions!



Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando [PS2 – Beta]

Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando (aka Ratchet & Clank 2: Locked and Loaded in certain PAL regions) is a 3D platformer/shooter developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony for the PlayStation 2 in 2003. Going Commando was approved for development five months before the first game’s release, after highly positive reviews from the original’s playtesters. In August 2002, Insomniac Games started designing the visual concepts for Going Commando, while still fixing bugs in the original game. [Info from Wikipedia]

In the early screens of the game we can notice some graphic differences, especially for the HUD and the weapon designs. Also, the slot machines that should be in one of the levels are blank in the beta version. The launcher model was used for a sort of flamethrower weapon, but there wasn’t a flamethrower in the final game, just a firey-rock thrower and a gun with a stream of magma. There is also a beta Sniper Rifle and a beta Blitz Gun.

In the image with the glass tubes, the level is at night instead than to be during day like  in the final version. Also, something in the background looks like a tree… and an odd one at that. The gladiators in the arena were pink, while in the final they’re green. As we can see from a beta trailer from MegaLamb YT account, all of the MegaCorp crates were  still “Gadgetron” crates at that stage of development.

In the first beta video below, one major thing is at about 1:11: that weapon looks like NOTHING in the game. The graphics aren’t the same, but it does have the same general effect as the Zodiac. They both blow EVERYTHING up around them.

In BOTH videos, you can see two different versions of the SAME area. In the first video, it’s at 1:00 and in the second, it’s at 0:49. Also, in the second video the boss life meters are different from the final ones. Also in the final game  you can unlock an area called the “Insomniac Museum”, that is full of  beta-info and unseen-models! You can check a tour in the Insomniac Museum in the videos below, thanks to Bowserenemy and ScottishDuck17 YT channels. In Bowserenemy first R&C: Going Commando video you can even see the glitch way to reach the Insomniac Musem!

You can check the Ratchet & Clank Beta topic in the U64 Forum for more info!

Thanks to Bowsersenemy for the contribution!