Joba is a planet in the Bogon Galaxy featured in Going Commando. It is a forest planet with a harsh climate on which the Megacorp Games event, a large arena event, and the Megacorp Hoverbike Race, are hosted. The world is also home to native tribesmen.
Ratchet and Clank visited the Megacorp Games after earning entry from the Mathematician when they defeated the Thug Leader in the Lunar City in Dobbo's orbiting moon. From the games, they obtained the Infiltrator, the Gravity Boots, and the Charge Boots.
The native Joba tribesmen were distant cousins of the Vukovar tribesmen from Barlow. A batch of Barlowian saur-beasts were sent to the Joba to be trained, and due to the harsh climate, evolved a tougher shell allowing them to withstand more damage. Megacorp at some point began to host the Megacorp Games on the planet, a gladiatorial combat event, and the Megacorp Hoverbike Race. The Desert Riders participated in the hoverbike races, and having one of their biker helmets allowed racers to enter. The Megacorp Games was a popular event to visit live, as tickets to the arena were sold out.
Ratchet and Clank visited after receiving an invite from the Mathematician, which they earned when they defeated the Thug Leader in Lunar City. In "Enter the Megacorp Games", the two fought through waves of Joba tribesmen, but were unable to enter the arena. The Shady Salesman, whom they had previously met on Rilgar and purchased the R.Y.N.O. from, sold them another blargian device, the Levitator, allowing them to enter as participants.
When they entered the arena, the announcer recognized Ratchet, as he had participated in the Galactic Gladiators in the Maktar Resort, but referred to Clank merely as "some metal guy". The two won the Infiltrator from an ordinary match, and the Gravity Boots from a subsequent cage match. They later competed in more challenges, earning bolts.
The duo also entered the hoverbike races, where Biker Two welcomed them as they owned the helmet. After winning the Charge Boots from the first race, the next race included bolt cash prizes.
Joba has a large amount of water as seen from space, though the area that Ratchet and Clank visit for the Megacorp Games is almost entirely tall cliffs with pine forests on top and an empty vast abyss below, suggesting its cliffs extend up several thousand feet. The planet has a very harsh climate, causing the saur-beasts to evolve to adapt. It is home to hostile native tribesmen, with several Megacorp buildings likely used for the Megacorp Games. The forests on top of the cliffs are home to trees with very thick trunks, and large mushroom-like growths growing out of the tree canopies. They are also home to harmless pink birds that rest on rails and the ground, as well as fireflies that gather by lamps.
The Megacorp Games area is built on top of very tall cliffs and within the forests. Though the area is mostly built on, as lamps illuminate the paths and several buildings are built along the way, though they are occupied by the indigenous tribesmen. A few large pipes are also built into the rocks and trees, connected to the buildings. In the distance, several tall cliffs can be seen, with small towers built into them. The largest building in the area is the Megacorp Games arena, which is an extremely tall stadium emitting a large light form the interior into the sky.
From where the Star Explorer lands, a natural bridge extends down to a lower cliff with a Megacorp vendor. Another natural bridge extends up here to a slightly wider cliff, with a building on the left entered through a large tunnel-like gate, beginning the path to the arena, and a path just off to the right leading to the race course. Adjacent to the building's entrance is a power box with a Dynamo activator that opens a door in the building to the left.
The paths surrounding the arena connected to the Star Explorer landing pad lead across several disparate cliffs, connected by bridges and versa-targets, with structures built on them. The path forks in two, where a path right leads over a few cliffs to the hoverbike garage, and the path left leads through a building onto a longer path. The hoverbike garage path simply leads over a few bridges connected to small cliffs with tall cylindrical towers built atop them, while the hoverbike garage is located on the side of a cliff. The arena path begins through a building with an abyss below, traversible through machinery activated by the building's power generator.
The path to the arena leads through disparate, smaller buildings over cliffs, all of which are occupied by tribesman. Turrets are also located between the buildings, which are also operated by the tribesman occupants. On one of the larger cliffs is a wall blocking the outer cliffside path from the area further inland. Another cliff directly below one of the larger buildings on the end of the path is dotted with moving machinery throughout it, forming a path from a lower cliff to the building at the top. Past this building is the area directly outside the arena, as a zipwire leads down to a metal platform nearby.
As the arena is located on a cliff far removed from the rest of the cliffs, the area surrounding the arena is mostly abyss. Aside from the Levitator, the arena can only be reached by taxi. In addition to a metal platform (where the Shady Salesman sold Ratchet the Levitator), several tall towers can be found around this path, nearby the arena's back entrance.
The Megacorp Games arena is considerably larger than the Galactic Gladiators arena in the Maktar Resort. The arena has a long, oval shape, and is surrounded by lava, with several audience podiums dotted around the outer rim. Many hazards, in the form of spinning blades and flamethrowers, are built into the ground, and activate on some challenges. In some challenges, the circular block in the center of the arena will rise and transform into a jump pad up to the round, glass cage at the top of the arena, where cage matches take place. Eight bullpens, four on either end of the arena, are used to transport challengers in. One large screen is located on the end of the arena, from which a challenge is selected.
Hoverbike race course
The race course goes through several paths around one of Joba's forest cliffs. It begins with a wide room filled with tall pylons, at the end of which are two tunnels on either side; a metal gate will keep one closed at all times. Both of the tunnels lead out to a swamp filled with mud, with rocks spread throughout, presenting a hazard for the racers. On the right of the swamp is an opening to a canyon path, blocked for most challenges, but leading directly to the second shortcut. At the end of the swamp is a tunnel through a cave, with a long gap past that leading to two vertical entrances: one higher up that can only be reached by a boosting hoverbike, and one lower down. Both of these routes are filled with tree roots either side, and end up at the same path through a forest, though the higher-up cave reaches the end of this path sooner.
At the end of the path is a ledge that drops down onto a wider, grass road with a fence on the left blocking the way to a large river. Flying turrets over the track drop three explosive barrels presenting hazards to the racers (only one turret appears in the first challenge, and three appear in later challenges), and the path ends in a fork, which is also where the first shortcut merges again. The fork to the left is a long path through a cavern lit up by blue lights along the track on the right, with slopes periodically on either side containing power-ups. The fork to the right (blocked by trees in some races) is a gap out to another cliff with forest on, which can be more reliably reached by a boosting hoverbike, and has one more gap at the end. Both paths lead out to an artificial tunnel back to the starting line in the first room.
Behind the scenes
Joba was designed by Lesley Matthiesson, programmed by Tony Garcia, and artwork was provided by Craig Goodman. Goodman's art encouraged Garcia to put extra effort and detail into Joba to make Goodman's art shine. As he did not want to add flying cars in the background to provide ambiance (which was necessary for Ratchet & Clank levels), he instead had the idea to program in fireflies. Due to how many segments included in Joba, it became especially difficult to fit them all in memory.
The section during "Enter the Megacorp Games" in which the Dynamo created a floating platform used to traverse along the wall was also designed by Mike Stout (and programmed by junior programmer Tony Garcia). This section was internally unpopular at Insomniac due to being a 2D design, the objects pushing Ratchet off a cliff, and the distance between objects not reaching the minimum jump requirement. Tony reflected that the trial and error nature of the challenge was an old school mentality.
- Going Commando, Monsterpedia
- Going Commando script § "Enter the Megacorp Games (gameplay)"
- Going Commando script § "Purchase Levitator (gameplay)"
- Going Commando script § "Win the Infiltrator (gameplay)"
- Stout, Garcia August 2011 1:35
- Stout, Garcia July 19 2011 0:17
- Stout, Garcia July 18 2011 2:38
- Stout, Garcia July 21 2011 6:19
- Insomniac Games (2003). Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando. PlayStation 2. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Mike Stout, Tony Garcia (July 18, 2011). Ratchet & Clank 2 Dev Commentary: 14 - Hrugis Cloud Space Combat. uselesspodcasts. YouTube.
- Mike Stout, Tony Garcia (July 19, 2011). Ratchet & Clank 2 Dev Commentary: 15 - QA Testing / Hoverbike. uselesspodcasts. YouTube.
- Mike Stout, Tony Garcia (July 21, 2011). Ratchet & Clank 2 Dev Commentary: 16A - Joba. uselesspodcasts. YouTube.
- Mike Stout, Tony Garcia (August 10, 2011). Ratchet & Clank 2 Dev Commentary: 23 - Gorn Space Combat. uselesspodcasts. YouTube.