Skyboards are vehicles featured in Size Matters. They are anti-gravity boards, similar to hoverboards, used primarily in dangerous races in the Solana Galaxy. Unlike the hoverboards, skyboards are airborne and capable of flight, with a greater freedom of movement. Ratchet and Clank used a skyboard for a few races to obtain gadgets.
Skyboard races are overseen by a committee, who forbid the use of nano-roids and certain alternafuels. This resulted in the Skyboarder being accused of cheating multiple times. Ratchet and Clank first used a skyboard on Kalidon during "Win the skyboard race", after being challenged by the Skyboarder who wished to prove his innocence. In beating him, they won the Shrink Ray and Grindboots. Later, they used the skyboard once again in a race around the wreckage of the Medical Outpost Omega, in "Rematch - Skyboard racer", winning them the Polarizer when the Skyboarder challenged them to a rematch.
Skyboard races are competed in by interacting with the Skyboarder on Kalidon or the Medical Outpost Omega and selecting an event. The events on which the tracks take place differ in the placement of the objects and availability of boosts. Each race consists of three laps around a map, and is won only by coming in first place.
The skyboard is capable of jumping, and holding down a boost to consume fuel and fly mid-air, either staying airborne or gaining more height. Boosting to fly allows the racer to avoid obstacles more easily in some cases, and in others, regain fuel from high areas to extend flight further. Along the courses are red tracks that provide a burst of speed when crossed, and blue tracks that slow the skyboard down, red rockets containing fuel refills, and both moving and static obstacles. The obstacles come in the form of mines, moving machinery, and floating rings, some of which contain a forcefield, all of which will cause you to crash if hit head-on. If Ratchet's skyboard is destroyed, he will respawn a distance away, but lose all momentum gained, making it a considerable setback.
In order to beat other racers in speed, the player must hit as many boosts and obtain as much fuel as possible. Players should ideally be using the boosts to stay airborne as much as possible, as this lets you avoid the more hazardous lower areas, and gain access to more boosts and freedom in the air. This also often grants access to hidden shortcuts. By doing this and avoiding obstacles, most races can be completed with ease. Fuel used to boost while passing over a red boost is redundant, making these red boosts ideal to conserve fuel for the rest of the track (or in particular when flight is desired).
Subsequent race rewards were always halved compared to the previous reward, up to a maximum of three times, after which they stabilized.
List of races
|Challenge||Description||Prizes in bolts|
|Learner's Permit||Everybody's got to start somewhere. Beat some junior boarders and learn the basics of what skyboarding can throw at ya'.||Shrink Ray
|Speeding Ticket||Speed is the name of the game. Hit all the speed-up tracks to get the edge on the competition.||2,500||1,250||625|
|Tricky Air||Sometimes staying on the ground is a bad idea. It's especially bad on a course loaded with explosive mines and board-breaking moguls.||3,500||1,750||875|
|Master's Challenge||This is it. The big Kahuna. The toughest race you're going to find in this sector, or anywhere.||Sludge Mk. 9 gloves
The first race consists of three laps around the basic track. The track starts in a wide metal tube and leads onto a rock path with some metal blocks along the way, before the edge of a cliff past which the track continues. Here, the track leads over an acid river and bends right, with some floating platforms above it that contain speed boosts. At the end of the river, the path continues through a building, with several hazards inside in the form of pistons and cogs. Past this, the track leads back onto the rock path with several ramps along it, eventually leading back to the start.
The track has adequate amounts of fuel and boosts to allow Ratchet to get ahead of the competing racers. By avoiding obstacles and using boosts as much as possible, this race is fairly simple to complete. Obtaining fuel as often as possible is ideal, as the floating platforms over the acid river containing red boosts are ideal to make use of.
The second race contains an abundance of speed boosts on the ground, with some changes to the track. As the track begins, the path is full of speed boosts with pillars as obstacles instead of the blocks, and on the acid river, the platforms containing boosts are much closer to the surface, with a few small ramps, and larger forcefield ring hazards that need to be flown through or avoided entirely. Past this, several obstacles form around the entrance to the building, within which are more speed boosts and mines, until the final room where there are blue speed bumps instead. Past this is a relatively drought of speed boosts, aside from the tops of a few pillars with the final boosts across them, and more forcefield ring hazards. Just before reaching the starting line again, near the final stretch are several rigged fans attempting to push the skyboard off-course.
Make use of the abundance of speed boosts, and conserve fuel for this. The fuel should be preserved for flying through the hazardous rings, or flying to reach the speed boosts near the end of the track. This is especially crucial for the acid river, where passing over the acid will slow the skyboard down considerably. By doing this and avoiding obstacles, this track can be won fairly easily.
The third race contains a large amount of forcefield rings as well as rigged fans. From the starting line, several fans push the racers to the right edge, before the path continues to several criss-crossing speed boosts through only a few obstacles before reaching the acid river. Here, fans will also attempt to push the skyboard down onto the acid or into the mines, and platforms are scarce. In the building, moving pistons and cogs near the start present a hazard, following which are speed boosts and speed bumps between hazards until the end. The last stretch contains a few floating platforms and rings above a mass of speed bumps below, once again making flight important.
A notable difference on this track is that near the start of the acid river is a tunnel on the right presenting a shortcut to skip the river. It is crucial to take this each time, due to how dangerous the acid river is, and how much time is saved doing so. If enough fuel is preserved here, another shortcut also exists within the building that can skip a portion of it. Beyond this, the key is to preserve fuel in order to fly on the key portions of the map that are hazardous, particularly the river and the final stretch. If this is done, the race should be won handily.
The final race contains a considerable amount of objects, and the racers will also take the shortcuts. From the starting line, the ground is comprised of speed bumps, with only a few metal blocks in the middle to avoid them and obtain fuel for flight. Across the acid river are a sparse amount of platforms, with floating obstacles and forcefield rings making it more challenging. In the building are fans and mines followed by a set of speed boosts straight into a metal block which must be flown over to avoid it, while the final room contains moving cogs and speed bumps. Past this is an abundance of forcefield rings, immobile pistols, and mines, with no speed boosts.
The shortcuts from the previous race are also available, as well as an additional shortcut at the end of the building that should all be used. Beyond this, fuel needs to be preserved for flight in order to dodge the obstacles and beat the race, and for the final stretch before the finish line where all fuel can be expanded to boost to victory. In order to win, make use of any opportunities to cut corners and expend boosts if several packs of fuel are found together.
Medical Outpost Omega
|Challenge||Description||Prizes in bolts|
|Interior Decorating||Description: Intrepid racers have pieced together the remnants of Medical Outpost Omega into a race track, combining the safety of an asteroid belt with the style and comfort that only sterile, twisted metal can bring. What could possibly go wrong?||Polarizer||2,000||1,000|
|Danger, High Voltage||Electrostatic Mines: For when racing through the abandoned husk of a detonated medical facility in the outer reaches of space simply isn't enough. A real racer might be able to avoid the mines, but I wouldn't throw away that anti-static wristband just yet, newbie.||5,500||2,750||1,375|
|The Vortex||The air vents in this race have been jury-rigged to reverse their flow; now they suck unwary racers into the embrace of their gaping, metal maws. Hey, but at least they don't explode.||7,000||3,500||1,750|
|Vertigo||The ultimate showdown, the final race of the season. Never has there been a greater opportunity to show off insane rocket tricks. Never has it been so easy to hit a spinning chunk of space rock so hard that you form your own crater. Either way, immortality is yours.||Electroshock boots
The first race consists of two laps around the basic track to obtain the Polarizer. This begins in the lower asteroids, where a few speed boosts and minimal obstacles begin the path. After this is a series of hallways left from the facility's debris; across their upper shelves, fuel can be obtained, which is crucial for the later portion. After this, the track leads into the metal, completed track, forming a helix-shaped track of two adjacent zig-zagging roads that must be traversed to reach the top. After this is a series of disparate islands, some of which with holes beneath them, that lead back to the starting line.
The key with this race (and with future races in these tracks) is preserving fuel near the beginning, due to its ability to cut corners. During the spiraling loops, it is possible to cross over between the zig-zagging tracks with flight, cutting much of the path. In the final segment with disparate islands, the objective is simply to head straight to the right back to the finish line: if possible, fly there directly as soon as this portion is reached to cut a considerable part of the track.
One good way to conserve fuel is to tap the boost periodically button rather than simply hold it down. This allows Ratchet to mostly maintain the same altitude, without using up too much fuel.
Danger, High Voltage
The second race consists of two laps around the same track, with more walls, speed boosts, speed bumps, and electrostatic mines on every portion. The strategy is similar to the previous race, though it is crucial to avoid many of the obstacles that appear throughout the course, and this should be prioritized. Rather than saving fuel for the final push, it may be necessary to use flight early on in order to avoid the speed bumps also. Finally, for the spiraling loops, it is even more important to jump between the more favorable tracks to pick up speed boosts and fuel and to avoid obstacles.
The third race takes place over the same track with more obstacles, as well as with air vents, some of which pull racers towards them while others push away. Once again, the same strategies apply, and flight may be required even more often early on. Make use of any opportunities to conserve fuel by using speed boosts where available. Avoid obstacles as much as possible, though remember that the final portion allows a lot of ground to be regained.
The final race once again takes place over the same track, with more of the same obstacles in different positions, and added forcefield rings. The same strategies apply, though dodging obstacles increases in importance once again. The added number of speed boosts early on also makes for great opportunities to conserve fuel by relying on these for speed instead of boosting. For the final stretch, if Ratchet is about to fall, simply steer the skyboard as close to the starting line island as possible, so that on respawning, Ratchet will arrive on the starting line and complete the lap.