It seems as if nowadays it's not enough to have just one hero in your platform game. Mario has Luigi, Jak has Daxter and now Ratchet has Clank. Ratchet and Clank are the newest heroes on the way to the PlayStation 2 and they have more in common with Jak and Daxter than just being a double-act. Apparently Naughty Dog (creators of the original Crash Bandicoot titles and Jak and Daxter) and Insomniac Studios (creators of Spyro the Dragon and Ratchet and Clank) have been pooling their resources to squeeze every last drop of platform gaming goodness out of the PlayStation 2. Ratchet and Clank was announced just prior to E3 and we spent a fair bit of time at the show checking out this interesting pair of heroes.

Ratchet and Clank is a platform game at heart but it does a have more happening than the usual 'collect one hundred of these collectable things to open the next door' mechanism which seems to have become the genre staple. The first noticeable difference is that combat is much more important. Word is that there will be up to thirty five different weapons in the game and that each is necessary to dispatch the different varieties of nasty critters that our heroes will encounter.

There is also a strong element of exploration in the game as Insomniac have made much of Ratchet and Clanks ability to explore the universe. They have their own rocket ship even! Judging from what we saw at E3 (and the screenshots that have been released so far) there is a lot of variety in the games different enivronments and there is likely to be plenty to see.

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