Holostar Studios was the location where several classic holo-films were filmed, such as Gone with the Solar Wind, War of the Stars, and The Adventures of Pokitaru Peterson. Clank also filmed Secret Agent Clank episodes here, one of which was set in the Maktar Casino, which Ratchet starred in as his chauffeur.
On Daxx, Ratchet and Clank learned that Courtney Gears was producing propaganda for Dr. Nefarious. They then agreed to meet her in the Annihilation Nation, where she gave out prizes. When they did, Gears was utterly uninterested in talking to Ratchet, but agreed to Clank's offer to impart more information about Nefarious if he gave her a part in Secret Agent Clank. They then traveled to Holostar Studios to meet up with her there.
In "Film a Secret Agent Clank Episode", Clank then filmed an episode for the director, named "Maxmillian Strikes Back", in which he fought Maximillian's ninjas and the Terror of Talos in a bid to rescue the Baroness, played by Gears. After filming the episode, Gears instead kidnapped Clank and took him to see Dr. Nefarious, where Nefarious pleaded with Clank to join his cause, before losing his patience and giving Clank no choice. Nefarious then deployed Klunk, a clone of Clank's, to find Ratchet, as well as a tyhrranoid ambush.
Ratchet waited at Lot 42 for Clank to return, when he was ambushed by tyhrranoids. After fighting through them, Ratchet met up with Klunk, whom he mistook for Clank, who informed them that Nefarious was held up in his star cruiser, the Leviathan.
Holostar Studios is located on a planet with a yellow-ish atmosphere, and from space appears to have grey water and green continents. Two areas of Holostar Studios are visited: Lot 42, and Lot 43. In both of these areas, buildings with green gambrel roofs are prolific, with the "H" logo atop their large gates, and movie sets with filming equipment are contained inside. Many of the sets for Secret Agent Clank are recreations of casinos, with slot machines and gambling tables.
Lot 42 is the location of "Escape the Tyhrranoid Ambush", where Clank's trailer is found. The lot comprises a group of buildings with different movie sets within them. Immense satellite dishes and radio towers are seen outside the lots. The smaller first smaller building near Clank's trailer is the recreation of a graveyard with tombstones and a fake rain effect, while the one near the Star Explorer landing pad is the recreation of a city street containing skyscrapers with bright neon lights. In the eastern end of the lot, a few towers are located, with no equipment inside, and versa-targets allowing the Hypershot to be used to swing across them. Reached using an elevator is the recreation of a casino with an audience podium.
Near the Star Explorer landing pad is a grav-ramp leading inside a building through an opening at the top, one of a set of buildings on the western side of the lot. These buildings have little inside aside from some filming equipment, some cardboard cutout of trees, and huge grav-ramps. In the first building, a circular grav-ramp in the middle forms a hole in the ground, which itself is a tunnel leading to a room underground. This room contains several spiraling grav-ramps over a pool of a yellow liquid, where the upper spiral leads to a gap in the wall containing a titanium bolt, while the lower spiral leads to a circular room. Said room has wide grav ramps flanking one smaller grav-ramp directly to an open area. Here stands a tall grav-ramp spire to the ceiling where a titanium bolt and a teleporter back to the ship are found.
Lot 43 is a movie set seen where the Secret Agent Clank episode "Maximillian Strikes Back" is filmed in the mission "Film a Secret Agent Clank Episode". It begins in a recreation of a bar, with stool chairs, tables, simplistic paintings, fans, and a bar, behind which is an open exit to the next area of the set. This is a wider room recreating roads in a city, with a few flying vehicle props moving up and down in front of a fake air backdrop to represent a chase scene in rush hour traffic, before reaching a recreation of a casino at the back of the room, held on top of stilts.
Past this room is the recreation of a cityscape, with the set taking place on the rooftops of skyscrapers connected by bridges. Clank himself traverses recreated rooftops, with satellite dishes on top, while several cardboard cutouts of skyscrapers are seen in the distance. This portion of the set ends in the inside of a recreation of a skyscraper with gold plates around its walls, and a giant gate.
The next portion of the movie set is another recreation of a cityscape in which Giant Clank appears. Several large skyscrapers with neon lights are modeled, as well as an entire monorail track, a radio tower, a sports stadium, power plants, a factory, parking lots, miniature cars, and trucks. The background has a wallpaper of skyscrapers, to give the impression that the cityscape is larger. Each of the buildings on this set is destructible and leaves behind rubble after Clank hits them.
Behind the scenes
Mike Stout designed the Clank segment, while Tony Garcia programmed the tyhrranoid setups for the Ratchet segment. Stout considers the Holostar Stuidos Clank segment to be his best, as the story of filming the movie made it interesting. Stout found it easier to design Clank gameplay with Secret Agent Clank than with regular Clank, as he could get away with making the level cheesier and including mechanics that were hard to explain in story otherwise. The gadgebots had to be included in the design, as it was difficult to design a Clank segment without them.
The developers were very behind on the level, meaning it was hard to have custom artwork for every part of the Clank section; as a result, the fake backdrops only appeared in the first part of the level, and could not be used for the later portion.
The original design for the Terror of Talos was inspired by Godzilla movies. The idea was that there was a robot on the monsters' head controlling its six arms with little strings. Though the programmers were on board with this idea, the artists and animators felt this was impossible. Though Stout was extremely proud of this design, communications broke down in a meeting as to why it would never work. The meltdown led to Brian Allgeier including it in a speech at DICE.
- Off 2004 p.98
- Up Your Arsenal script § "Meet with Courtney Gears (gameplay)"
- Up Your Arsenal script § "Film a Secret Agent Clank Episode (gameplay)"
- Stout, Garcia 1:29
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- Stout, Garcia 2:36
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- Video games
- Insomniac Games (2004). Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal. PlayStation 2. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Greg Off (November 2004). Ratchet & Clank Up Your Arsenal Official Strategy Guide. BradyGames. ISBN 0744005000
- Mike Stout, Tony Garcia (August 13, 2012). Ratchet and Clank 3 - Developer Commentary - Ep 23. uselesspodcasts. YouTube.