Kerwan is a planet in the Solana Galaxy featured in Ratchet & Clank, the 2016 re-imagined game and movie, Up Your Arsenal, Tools of Destruction, with additional appearances in Deadlocked, Full Frontal Assault as an optional map, and Issue 3: Lost and Spaced of the Ratchet & Clank comic series. It is a large, bustling, urban planet home to the gigantic city of Metropolis, known as Aleero City in the 2016 re-imagined releases. Metropolis is known for its use of flying cars in pre-designated lanes, grav-trains, and large skyscrapers dotted in green vegetation, plants, and moss. The planet is home to Big Al's Roboshack and Gaming Superstore. It is also the home of Captain Qwark, and the most prominent location in the Ratchet & Clank series.
Ratchet and Clank first came to Kerwan in search of Captain Qwark, after seeing a commercial for Al's Roboshack. While unable to locate Qwark, they were able to obtain very useful gadgets, including the Heli-Pack and Swingshot, which would be invaluable in all their subsequent adventures. The two later returned to Kerwan during Dr. Nefarious' attack with the Biobliterator, as he successfully turned the entire population of the planet into robots. Later, Ratchet and Clank had lived in Metropolis prior to Emperor Tachyon's attack with his drophyd army, and fought off the drophyds while fleeing the planet.
In Up Your Arsenal, the city features a hidden teleporter to the Insomniac Museum. Once the player defeats enemies near the ship at the center area, by going left and breaking the glass, and jumping across to the next section, a teleporter can be found. If the player's game clock is set between 3:00am and 4:00am, they can be transported to the museum.
Before Ratchet & Clank
Kerwan was the home of Captain Qwark, where he grew up, and attended the Kerwan Learning Annex to draw schematics. It was also the home of heroes Quaternion X and Captain Starshield, the latter of whom had earned the title Citizen of the Millennium.
Documented in the Qwark vid-comic Deja Q All Over Again, while Captain Qwark was training at his fitness course at the behest of Helga von Streissenburgen, Dr. Nefarious attacked the city with an army of insectoids. Qwark interrupted his fitness training session in order to fight off the insectoids, and then defeated the robotic Nefarious. Nefarious vowed to return to Metropolis and enact vengeance, and Qwark threw his detached robot head into a trash can. However, Lawrence, Nefarious' butler, knocked Qwark out, recovered Nefarious' head, and took them both to Nefarious' hideout.
At some point, Qwark appeared in a commercial endorsing Big Al's Roboshack. The grav-train in the city also provided scenic tours, prior to the blarg's invasion.
Ratchet & Clank
The two landed on the planet in search of Captain Qwark, and found it under attack by the blarg. In "Visit Al's Roboshack", Ratchet and Clank visited Al to inquire about Qwark's whereabouts. While Al was unable to help search for Qwark, he was able to upgrade Clank with the Heli-Pack for 1,000 bolts, as he recognized Clank's compatible XP-18 sisterboard hardware. The two purchased the Heli-Pack, allowing them to explore the rest of the city, and eventually traveled aboard a grav-train to chase an infobot, which provided coordinates for Eudora.
The two also completed Qwark's fitness challenge, ran by Qwark's trainer Helga, who offered a prize to those who completed it. Upon completing the challenge, she scolded the two for "disgracing" her obstacle course. While Qwark had asked her to reward the two with a Swingshot, Helga demanded that the two pay 1,000 bolts to buy it from her instead. Though reluctant at first, the two obliged and purchased a Swingshot.
In Qwark's retelling of events and the holo-film, Kerwan is home to Aleero City, which features the Hall of Heroes, the headquarters of the Galactic Rangers. Aleero City is invaded by Chairman Drek, who sends a warbot army from a Class G Dreadship led by Victor Von Ion to destroy the Galactic Rangers and stop them from interfering with his plans. The Rangers fight the warbots from their Hall of Heroes, and are mostly unsuccessful. However, Ratchet and Clank arrive, using Mr. Micron's ship with Mag-Boosters that allow them to take down the Dreadship by throwing warbots into it. This destroys the warship and ends the assault. Shortly afterwards, Qwark, after being put on the spot by reporters, recruited Ratchet and Clank to the Rangers.
Ratchet and Clank were left stranded in the city after a blarg destroyed their ship, and had to find a route to the Hall of Heroes. This led to them fighting through blarg forces to reach Al's Roboshack, where Al upgraded Clank with a Heli-Pack for free as a gesture to the Rangers. Al then advised them that they could find a train to the Hall of Heroes, as a grav-train near his roboshack would take them straight back. They then used the Heli-Pack to travel to the grav-train station and rode a grav-train, transporting ships, statues, and dangerous animals and disconnect a bomb installed on it by the blarg. After disconnecting the bomb from the train, they then took the train to the Hall of Heroes.
Ratchet and Clank were then trained by the Rangers in the Hall of Heroes. Ratchet was trained by Brax Lectrus, and completed the Rangers' fitness course, while Clank stayed behind with Elaris, the tactical support.
Up Your Arsenal
Following Qwark's apparent death after he did not appear to escape the Leviathan, Al gave Ratchet the Qwark vid-comic Deja Q All Over Again, which had arrived in the mail for Qwark. The vid-comic, which took place in Metropolis, detailed Nefarious attacking the city with an army of insectoids before Qwark stopped him. After completing the vid-comic, Ratchet believed that Metropolis would be Nefarious' next target.
In "Find Dr. Nefarious", Ratchet arrived on the planet with Klunk, whom he still believed to be Clank, and found the planet was already under attack by tyhrranoids. Meanwhile, Nefarious had the real Clank locked up in a cage by a grav-train. Ratchet fought through waves of tyhrranoids, before Nefarious then used the Biobliterator. This device turned all organic lifeforms in Metropolis to robots, including the tyhrranoids, aside from Ratchet who successfully dodged it. Ratchet then fought through the robonoids and found Nefarious as well as Klunk. Nefarious then teleported away while Klunk revealed himself.
In "Defeat Giant Klunk", Klunk transformed into Giant Klunk and fought Ratchet on the grav-train. Ratchet defeated him and then freed Clank, who lamented that it was all his fault, though Ratchet ascribed no blame to him. After this, in "Destroy the robotic Tyhrranoid Forces", Ratchet and Clank assisted the Galactic Rangers elsewhere in the city in Operation: URBAN STORM. In it, Ratchet destroyed explosive charges that the tyhrranoids had placed all over the city, before then repelling the tyhrranoids in the hovership, on land, and using the turret. The Rangers after the battle awarded Ratchet the Map-o-Matic after all squad members chipped in for a gift.
After Up Your Arsenal
Sasha Phyronix became appointed interim Mayor of Metropolis, leaving the Starship Phoenix to Ratchet, Clank and Al. According to Vox News, Sasha had been appointed after the previous mayor stepped down amid a sordid scandal involving illicit funds from an amoeboid mafia.
Tools of Destruction
Ratchet and Clank had been living in Metropolis when the city came under attack from Emperor Tachyon's Imperial Army. They were first notified by Qwark, who sent them a transmission from within the Planetary Defense Center, requesting they come to his aid. The city suffered major damage from Tachyon's army, while Ratchet and Clank fought through waves of drophyds to reach the Planetary Defense Center.
Upon arrival, the two found the Planetary Defense Center vacant, and were forced to flee on grav-train rails using the Grind Boots. Eventually, they caught up with Tachyon, who introduced himself, and promised to kill no one else on Metropolis if Ratchet surrender and allow Tachyon to kill him. Ratchet disabled Tachyon by breaking one of his walking throne's legs, and fled using Tachyon's ship to the Polaris Galaxy.
According to the IRIS Supercomputer, a portion of the Imperial Army stayed behind on Kerwan in search of the Dimensionator before leaving, while the city underwent reconstruction and the inhabitants were stuck watching repeat screenings of Big Al's Bot Wars.
In Lost and Spaced, Kerwan is mentioned as one of the planets that were stolen by Artemis Zogg and taken to his Artemis Galaxy. Once Zogg was defeated, it was presumably returned to its previous location.
Metropolis is a large, bustling city, with huge amounts of dense skyway traffic can be seen, and there are many forms of transportation, including a grav-train transit system, suggesting the city is constantly active. The city also appears very commercialized, with blimps in the sky advertising logos, and brightly colored billboards are seen through (most prominent in the re-imagined releases). The entire population of the city were transformed into robots, following Dr. Nefarious' use of the Biobliterator.
Metropolis is the home and birthplace of many galactic heroes. Aside from Captain Qwark, it is also home to named heroes Quaternion X, the Brown Ranger, and Captain Starshield, though all of them were kidnapped to compete in DreadZone. Qwark's logos and imagery appear throughout the city, suggesting he is popular among residents.
Metropolis has a mayor, presumably elected, as interim mayors are appointed by the President when a sitting mayor steps down. The Planetary Defense Center featured in the city is used to defend against external threats.
Various means of transportation are used around Metropolis. Most prominently, flying cars in pre-designated lanes make up the dense skyway traffic seen in the air at all times, while a transit system of red grav-trains connect many parts of the city. Grav-trains, red hovering freight trains flying throughout Metropolis, also provided scenic tours of the city, prior to the blarg invasion. Some trains can also be seen on rail tracks. Blimps with logos can also be seen in the sky, used for advertisement.
Grav-trains feature prominently in Ratchet & Clank, the 2016 re-imagined game, and Up Your Arsenal. These carriages have flat platforms in the carts on which Ratchet can stand, and carry luggage. In the original and re-imagined release, Ratchet fought blarg forces while running across the train, with the re-imagined release also transporting killer fish, construction materials, and a large bomb that the blarg attempted to use to destroy the Hall of Heroes. In Up Your Arsenal, Ratchet fought Giant Klunk on the grav-train.
Trains on rails appear in Tools of Destruction, with Ratchet grinding across the rails while many came at him full speed during Tachyon's invasion.
Blimps were seen in the original Ratchet & Clank and Up Your Arsenal, with a large Qwark logo. These blimps appear to be mainly used for transport. Destroying these blimps earns the skill points "Blimpy" and "2002 was a good year in the city" in the respective first and third games.
Metropolis is a large cityscape with tall skyscrapers covered in vegetation, and dense skyway traffic. The skyscrapers are so high up that those who look below from the top will see only a dense blue-ish fog that obscures the view. The buildings also feature bronze caps with spires on top and green windows as decorations, as well as grassy areas, plants and moss, and are connected by sky bridges. Several areas on top of buildings and floating islands have grass, trees, vegetation, and also street lamps.
Several brightly colored billboards with logos and imagery are found throughout the city (particularly prominent in the re-imagined release).
Big Al's Roboshack and Gaming Superstore
Big Al's Roboshack is visited in Ratchet & Clank, the 2016 re-imagined game, and mentioned in A Crack in Time and All 4 One. It is a large store run by Al, which provides repairs and upgrades for technology. It is a grey store on top of a skyscraper, identified by a large, rotating, gold robot statue carrying a wrench on top of store's entrance on the skybridge. Inside, the store is home to several robotic parts, along with Al's workbench. Behind the back exit of the store is a storage area with many stacked crates that lead towards other skybridges eventually towards a grav-train station.
Big Al's Roboshack supplied several repairs for Captain Qwark's equipment during his adventuring, and also supplied the Heli-Pack upgrade for Clank. Qwark filmed an ad for Al's Roboshack before Ratchet and Clank arrived. The Roboshack was relaunched years later as Big Al's Roboshack and Gaming Superstore, expanded to sell videogames, and advertised over Space Radio commercials.
In the re-imagined release, upon visiting the store, it also sold My Blaster Runs Hot, Fongoid with a Stick, Speero the Space Mouse, and Intransigence: Fall of Blarg, for which the Mega-Limited Ultra Edition release was available. Posters for each of these could be seen in the store, along with items including Captain Qwark books and a Qwark clock. The outside of the Roboshack is different, as it is a red structure lacking the golden rotating robot statue, instead featuring a billboard sign to the left. The building was also closed off when the blarg attack.
Captain Qwark fitness course
Qwark's fitness course appears in Ratchet & Clank, the 2016 re-imagined game, and in Up Your Arsenal during the vid-comic Deja Q All Over Again. It is a fitness course ran by Qwark's fitness trainer, Helga von Streissenburgen, and advertised by a Qwark bot with a spring for legs. A prize was offered to those who could successfully traverse the course. The course contains expanding and retracting platforms to jump on and wall jumps to get across, with the goal being for the participant to reach the top of an island and then use a zip wire to reach the next. The first island contains a rocky hill with some built-in jump slots to be climbed, while the second holds a large, yellow and black structure.
Qwark used the fitness course himself during the vid-comics, and Ratchet and Clank beat the challenge only to be scolded by Helga. In the re-imagined release, the Captain Qwark fitness course instead located in the Hall of Heroes and is used by the Rangers, with a similar structure though the first island features a metal structure rather than a hill, and islands are not connected by zip lines. This version requires the Ranger to reach the top of the first island, the "Summit of Justice", and climb the structure on the second island, the "Tower of Power", and features Qwark bots throughout the course, at the bottom and top of the first two islands, and on the final island.
Planetary Defense Center
The Planetary Defense Center appears in Tools of Destruction. It is ran by Captain Qwark, and used to defend against external threats, and it is not open to the public. Ratchet and Clank visited the Planetary Defense Center after Qwark requested their help in defending against Tachyon's drophyd attack, only to find he had vacated the building before they arrived.
Hall of Heroes
The Hall of Heroes appears in the 2016 re-imagined release of Ratchet & Clank. It is the headquarters of the Galactic Rangers, located on a large, grassy, floating island. The Hall's island has a gate leading towards a long stretch of land before a tall building, in which the Rangers reside. It is home to their VR training deck, used to train Ratchet, a small central control room ran by Elaris that exists within a broom closet, and a cafeteria for food. The island is connected to a grav-train, and in this release, is home to the Captain Qwark fitness course.
Ratchet & Clank area
The area visited in Ratchet & Clank is a set of buildings connected by sky bridges, leading to Al's Roboshack and a grav-train station. Their ship lands in a small grassy area by a landing platform, with a tunnel leading down to a circular area connected to two paths. Surrounding the landing platform are several inaccessible buildings in the distance, and large amounts of air traffic. Below the landing platform is a large tunnel through which air traffic travels. Above the platform is a train station.
The path on the left leads to Qwark's fitness course, located behind a large structure. The fitness course consists of three large, round, grassy islands, with each leading to a summit containing a zip line down to the next island. The first island is attached to the structure leading to the course, and has a large, rocky hill to climb with jump slot areas for wall jumps, and leads towards the second island. This is a round island with a yellow and black structure, containing retracting and expanding platforms, as well as jump slots, to climb to reach the zip wire. This leads to the third island, a small island featuring three platforms built into its ground, connected by Versa-targets allowing the Swingshot to be used to reach the highest platform, containing a zip line back to the first island. Located just to the east of the second building is an building accessible from the surrounding openings.
The path on the right leads to a series of sky bridges connecting several buildings, eventually leading to Al's Roboshack and to a grav-train station. The first two buildings are located on the east side and are connected by a short bridge, and the second has a longer bridge leading west, to two open platforms on buildings connected by an escalator leading down to the lower platform. This contains a long bridge east that marks the entrance to Al's Roboshack.
Behind Al's Roboshack is an open concrete area with large stacked boxes, which can be climbed to reach a building with an elevator to its summit. This is located next to another building to its north, with an elevator up to a sky bridge to the grav-train station. The station is entered with an elevator, and has many large stacked wooden boxes and crates. To the left after the entrance to the station, a grav-train is boarded. This returns to the train station above to the starting area, with two open areas from it, of which the one on the right leads down to an elevator returning to the beginning, while the one on the left simply leads to a balcony surrounded by a metal fence.
The first area visited is an area surrounding the Hall of Heroes, with several surrounding buildings, and an orange forcefield around where the blarg attack.
After this, Downtown Aleero City is visited, which is very similar to the Metropolis area visited in the original Ratchet & Clank in its path, though it is notably home to more advertisement billboards. This begins with a large area with a familiar tunnel leading to a similar circular area, though there is no path on the left leading to Qwark's fitness course. The path on the right still leads to the two buildings connected by a sky bridge, with the second leading to a third building with a tunnel leading down to a lower platform with a small fountain. This platform has a bridge to Al's Roboshack.
Behind Al's Roboshack is a familiar stack of crates in front of a building with an elevator to its summit, with a building to the west that also has an elevator up leading to the grav-train station. The entrance to the grav-train station is a tunnel with stairs leading inside, and is stacked with wooden crates with the grav-train boarded to the left of the entrance.
The grav-train leads to the island on which the Hall of Heroes is located. To the right of the entrance to the Hall of Heroes is a bridge to the Captain Qwark fitness course made of three floating islands, surrounded by a large open gate. A Qwark bot greets those who enter, and the first island of the course is made of grey and orange boxes with jump slots and platforms to climb to reach the summit of the first island, known as the "Summit of Justice", containing another Qwark bot greeting those who reach it. A series of versa-targets allow participants to Swingshot down to the second island. This island features the "Tower of Power", a larger grey and orange structure with many more retracting metal platforms and jump slots, as well as another Qwark bot greeting it. The top of the Tower of Power has another Qwark bot and an edge leading to the third island, a much smaller island with only a small structure and a final Qwark bot, and a taxi leading back to the beginning.
After reaching the Hall of Heroes, the two reach the Rangers fitness course, home to the "Summit of Justice" and the "Tower of Power".
Up Your Arsenal area
The main area seen in the mission "Find Dr. Nefarious" is a linear path across a set of rooftops, leading to a plaza where the grav-train stops. The Star Explorer lands on a flat rooftop, with a bridge connected to the first tower. This tower is adjacent to another tower on the left, which can be reached by hopping across a balcony, where the teleporter for the Insomniac Museum is located on one balcony, and another has a versa-target across to reach a further balcony where a titanium bolt is located. The first tower also has a bridge bending right to the second tower, which is similar to the first though the Skrunch trophy is located on one of its balconies.
The second tower connects to a flat rooftop, with a corridor on its right leading to a ledge, on top of which is another tower. This tower has a grav-ramp down to another corridor, which leads to a wide balcony. Adjacent to this is another balcony, with a grav-ramp nearby that leads across the side of a few buildings onto a flat rooftop. On here is where a bridge, one activated by the Refractor, connects to a round plaza on a rooftop where the grav-train stops.
Operation: URBAN STORM area
The area in Operation: URBAN Storm is a symmetrical set of rooftops and towers, connected by bridges, with one long bridge in the center from northeast to southwest. The area has four tall towers, of which two on the northeast and southwest respectively are connected to identical circular rooftop plazas linked to the main bridge in the center, while the other two are disconnected from the main bridge and are linked by smaller bridges to two lower rooftops. Both towers have two levels with balconies, on which enemies are fought. Either side of the central bridge, on the northwest and southwest respectively, are blue pyramid-like structures adjacent to the two disconnected towers.
Tools of Destruction area
Up Your Arsenal
Metropolis is a large map that supports all game modes. It is based on the map in Operation: URBAN STORM, with the main differences being that the towers in the top-right and bottom-left are replaced with flat rooftops on which the bases are located. The map is symmetrical and designed for Siege, and features hoverships. Versa-targets are used to traverse the different islands of the maps.
Full Frontal Assault
Metropolis features as a downloadable map for Full Frontal Assault. It does not appear in the main story.
Behind the scenes
Metropolis was one of the first big levels in Ratchet & Clank that Insomniac Games created, and almost "started a war" between the designers and the artists. The goal was to have lots of greenery built into retro science fiction buildings to create a unique contrast. Many of the bronze caps on top of buildings was removed because they clashed with the rest of the city.
Metropolis was later the first level of Ratchet & Clank that Insomniac prototyped and presented to Sony to showcase the game, before the game engine had been developed, in which buildings were merely cardboard cutouts of their final appearance, and Ratchet had a Pyrocitor and a Suck Cannon. Vegetation (suggested by Mark Cerny) and flying cars were added to the city to make it feel alive. It was shown as the "Metropolis" diorama. While the name "Metropolis" for the city was constant throughout, in the beta, planet Kerwan was originally named "Planet Caldera".
Kerwan was later used as a tech demo for Tools of Destruction, as the team began development by recreating a diorama of Metropolis in the Resistance: Fall of Man engine to visualize what a Ratchet & Clank game would look like. A camera was sent through it and audio effects were added, which was shown at the 2006 Game Developers Conference.
Throughout its appearances, planet Kerwan as seen from space has changed in appearance dramatically. In the original Ratchet & Clank, the appearance from space resembles Coruscant from Star Wars, implying its surface to be a worldwide city. In Up Your Arsenal, Kerwan from space is instead a lush, vegetated world covered in vast oceans, implying there is more to the planet beyond Metropolis' urban landscapes. In subsequent appearances, Kerwan similarly looked different from space, but more closely resembled the Up Your Arsenal version.
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Giant Green Bratwurst"
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Quit While You're a Head"
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Redecorating the Torture Chamber"
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Ratchet & Clank (2002 game), "Ride the Robot Train"
- ↑ Ratchet & Clank (2002 game) script § "Hey, you're that robot guy, right?"
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Ratchet & Clank (2002 game) script § "Welcome!"
- ↑ Ratchet & Clank (2002 game) script § "Listen up you lardballs!"
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 Ratchet & Clank (2016 game)
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Phoenix 6"
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Find Dr. Nefarious (gameplay)"
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Defeat Giant Klunk (gameplay)"
- ↑ Up Your Arsenal script § "Turret Command (gameplay)"
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 13.2 Insomniac Games 2005
- ↑ Ratchet & Clank (2002 game) script § "infobot - Ad for Al's Roboshack"
- ↑ A Crack in Time
- ↑ All 4 One
- ↑ Ratchet & Clank (2002 game) Goodies § "Sketchbook"
- ↑ Stevenson, Price 2017 26:28
- ↑ Allgeier, Fixman 2018 10:50
- ↑ Ratchet & Clank (2002 game), E3 demo
- ↑ Fiorito 2008 p .34
- Video games
- Insomniac Games (2002). Ratchet & Clank. PlayStation 2. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Insomniac Games (2004). Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal. PlayStation 2. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Insomniac Games (2005). Ratchet: Deadlocked. PlayStation 2. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Insomniac Games (2007). Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction. PlayStation 3. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Insomniac Games (2009). Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time. PlayStation 3. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Insomniac Games (2011). Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One. PlayStation 3. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- Insomniac Games (2016). Ratchet & Clank. PlayStation 4. Sony Interactive Entertainment.
- John Fiorito (February 2008). Game Developer: The Leading Game Industry Magazine. Game Developer.
- Insomniac Games (October 24, 2005). Entertainment News - News Update. Insomniac Games. Archived from the original at November 8, 2019.
- James Stevenson, Ted Price (November 7, 2017). Insomniac Live - Ratchet & Clank. Insomniac Games. YouTube.
- Brian Allgeier, TJ Fixman (June 26, 2018). 15 Years of Ratchet & Clank: A Lombax Story. GDC. YouTube.