The Pyrocitor is an incendiary weapon featured in Ratchet & Clank and its re-imagined re-release. It is a short-ranged flamethrower manufactured by Gadgetron, which exhausts ammunition quickly, but can easily defeat smaller enemies.
In the original release, it upgrades to the Gold Pyrocitor. In the re-imagined release, it upgrades to the Lavacitor, and later the Omega Lavacitor.
Ratchet & Clank
The Pyrocitor became available from Novalis onwards, for 2,500 bolts, and was the first weapon that Ratchet could purchase from a Gadgetron vendor. Upon completion of the game, the Gold Pyrocitor, Gadgetron's deluxe version of the weapon, became available for 30,000 bolts and 4 gold bolts. It was also used by test dummies on Kalebo III when fighting Ratchet.
In Qwark's retelling, the Pyrocitor was also made available on Novalis, purchased for 2,000 bolts. With use, it upgraded to the more powerful Lavacitor, which replaced standard Pyrocitor fuel with Lavamorph to deal more damage, and caused enemies killed by the weapon to burst into embers, damaging nearby enemies.
Ratchet also upgraded the weapon with Raritanium upgrades. Sixteen range upgrades granted a 5% increase in the length the flames reached each upgrade, fifteen stream width upgrades granted a 14% increase in the width the flames reached each upgrade, six bonus Raritanium upgrades increased the Raritanium dropped by enemies killed with the weapon by +8% each upgrade, and twenty ember damage upgrades increased the damage by enemies exploded by the weapon by +10% each upgrade. Three mystery upgrades were also unlocked. The mystery upgrade located on the left was Pressurized Canisters, increasing ammo dropped in crates; the upgrade on the right was Extradimensional Tank, increasing ammo capacity; and the mystery upgrade available once the weapon upgraded to Lavacitor was Lavamorph Isotopes, increasing the amount of embers left per explosion.
Up Your Arsenal
The Pyrocitor was used by test dummies in the testing arena, but was not usable by Ratchet.
The Pyrocitor is a large weapon, colored silver with a red trim. It has a large base with a handle protruding from the side, along with a large scope and a large, red muzzle. There is a red gas canister just below the weapon with a tube connecting to the muzzle, which supplies the weapon with its flame. The flame thrown is relatively short-ranged and continuous. When upgraded to the Gold Pyrocitor, the flame becomes green rather than orange and has slightly increased range.
The Pyrocitor's main use is to fight large groups of small enemies in relatively close range. As it has a high ammunition capacity and can easily defeat weaker enemies, the Pyrocitor is very effective against large swarms of enemies, or enemies that cover a wider distance. A good example is the sandsharks on Aridia, where the Pyrocitor can make the mission far easier than the OmniWrench can. However, the Pyrocitor is very poor against larger enemies which require more hits to be defeated.
In the original Ratchet & Clank, due to its lack of targeting, and Ratchet's lack of strafing, the Pyrocitor cannot easily focus on a single target, but is instead better at "spraying." The Pyrocitor in this version is very useful for a large portion of the game, until the player acquires weapons which outclass it, such as the Morph-o-Ray or the Tesla Claw. The Morph-o-Ray outclasses the Pyrocitor in that it requires no ammo and is useful against the same enemies. The Tesla Claw outclasses the Pyrocitor, as it can target specific enemies, meaning it is useful against large mobs of small enemies and larger enemies, while the Pyrocitor can only effectively combat the former. Other than the Tesla Claw and the Blaster, the Pyrocitor does not have many peers among weapons in Ratchet & Clank.
In the re-imagined release, the Pyrocitor remains relevant for longer, due to the upgrades in the form of raritanium upgrades, and the weapon leveling up with use. Initially, the weapon is fairly weak, though raritanium upgrades improving its stream width and length quickly make it strong against mobs. Additionally, when upgraded to the Lavacitor, enemies killed by the weapon leave behind embers, spreading its damage to even more enemies. When increased with raritanium, the embers left by the weapon make even quicker work. However, it is still easily outclassed by the Sheepinator and Pixelizer for dealing with mobs of small enemies, particularly when no raritanium upgrades are unlocked.
Behind the scenes
The Pyrocitor was featured in the Ratchet & Clank demo, where the flames moved more quickly than those of the weapon in the full version of the game. This meant that the spin technique was less effective with this version, as the trail would not bend as much. It is unknown why this was changed.
The ammo for the Pyrocitor found in ammo crates was identical to the fuel tank seen on the weapon itself, albeit much more stubby. Insomniac employee Alex Hastings has called the Pyrocitor one of his favorite weapons.