Ratchet: Deadlocked begins with a cutscene showing a famous hero being forced to participate in a futuristic game show known as Dreadzone. After this superhero is killed, Sasha contacts Ratchet and Clank and tells them that they need to go investigate this and stop it from happening again. However, right as she contacts them, Ratchet's ship is boarded and they are taken hostage.
The duo, along with mechanic Big Al, are taken to a lawless fringe of the galaxy known as the Shadow Sector. Once there, it is revealed that Ratchet has been captured by Vox Entertainment chairman Gleeman Vox, and he is forced to take part in the same futuristic game show that the other hero was in. Ratchet tries to escape, but it is made impossible due to the Deadlocked collar around his neck, which will electrocute and kill him should he ever wander outside the predetermined zones or become boring.
Ratchet becomes a part of Team Darkstar, which is composed of Al, Clank, and two support robots named Merc and Green who accompany Ratchet on missions. Clank serves as mission support, while Al tries frantically to remove the Deadlocked collars from their necks, allowing them to escape. After completing a grueling series of challenges and slaying many of the Exterminators (a squad of ruthless bounty hunters working for Vox), Ratchet confronts their leader, Ace Hardlight. As Ace fakes his death, he tells Ratchet, "Don't let Vox do to you what he did to me."
As Ratchet returns to Vox, he is offered a spot as the leader of the Exterminators. Ratchet refuses, calling Vox "stupid" and "greedy." In his anger, Vox sends Ratchet to a course called "The Gauntlet of Doom," which has been proven mathematically impossible to survive in. Ratchet successfully passes the test and returns safely to his holding area. There, he discovers that Clank found a way to deactivate the containment shield holding the other heroes hostage. He is also told that he needs to take a shuttle to destroy the stations central computer, but that it is also a "one-way trip."
Arriving on the station, Ratchet is informed by Gleeman Vox that he wired the entire Battlezone with explosives, and that if he fails everyone there would die. After successfully getting through the obstacles of the station, he manages to deactivate the containment fields and make the escape pods usable again. But as he is about to escape, Gleeman Vox stops him, and a lengthy battle against Vox and his mech ensues. After Vox is defeated, Al and Clank rescue Ratchet and the contestants just before the station explodes, taking Vox with it.
After the credits are over, a small cameo scene involving Dr. Nefarious and his butler Lawrence plays out. They are waiting on an asteroid, floating towards the DreadZone station. However, it has just blown up, and upon realizing this, Dr. Nefarious throws a childish fit.
To completely conquer DreadZone, Ratchet has to battle Exterminators. These are elite gladiators working for Gleeman Vox who kill other heroes.
ShellShock - Ivan Von Shellshocktonberg (better known by his DreadZone name as ShellShock) is a robot that specialized in ammunition. He is first and lowest ranked of the four Exterminator members. His brain was destroyed by a cruise missile during the Obani Moon war, and was replaced with a coffee machine's AI chip. As a result, Shellshock is immune to pain (but not damage) and made a great cappuccino. He is basically a robotic version of Arnold Schwarzenegger. He was very large and muscular, had a plethora of weapons, talked with an extremely distinct Austrian accent, and used insults such as "girly men" and "sissies" on almost everybody. His best friend was Reactor, whom he carpooled with. He became the "Sexiest Robot Alive" on Vox Magazine.
He has multiple weapons at his disposal. The first are the mortars on his back that he uses to unleash a barrage of missiles at your general direction. The second is his jump attack that sends out a blast wave of energy that you have to jump over. The third and final are what appear to be Bouncers from Going commando embedded into his chest that he can use to fire bouncing mines at you.
Dull "Reactor" Bookworm - This exterminator is a huge robot with a nuclear reactor built into his body, who was once a high school math teacher before he became a DreadZone contestant. Ratchet is barely up to his knees. He apparently dated Courtney Gears and was dumped by her. Because of his formidable strength, Reactor became one of the most dangerous Exterminators at DreadZone and is now the third highest ranked exterminator on DreadZone. He is Shellshock's friend. His first weapon is a blaster in his arm. He can blast twoards you and jump attack. He also has flamethrower that leaves burning lines on the ground that hurt you.
Eviscerator -The Eviscerator is one of the many illegal robot-alien hybrids. He enjoyed killing and humiliating other heroes, it was likely that he was never much of a hero himself. He has Corbonox armor and razor sharp titanium blades. Not much of his personality is revealed either however, he doesn't seem to be as cocky as the other exterminators but rather calm and smart. Kidnapped by Gleeman Vox, the Eviscerator sliced it's way through DreadZone, becoming one of Ace Hardlight's trusted Exterminators. He also called in Slasher (mostly known as Tremors) enemies. Also, he fired a vibronic ray out of a ball of sonic energy that he formed in his hands, and also fired small missiles.
- Ace Hardlight was once a famous hero from Bolden 3 who had mysteriously vanished from the face of the Solana galaxy, never to be seen again. However, reasons lead to suspect that it was at the time of his disappearance that he'd been kidnapped by the Vox empire to become one of the many contestants on Gleeman Vox's show DreadZone. During his time in the competition he started to enjoy his work and became one of the best at it, topping many leaderboards. He trows grenades that explode into shockwaves. He can become invinsible and heal himself however this only happens 3 times. He can creates copies of himself and all of them shoot you with his blaster. He also has a laser that homes in on you.
You can go to different planets to earn medals and earn dread points to advance through the ranks of DreadZone. All of the planets are at the Shadow Sector of the Solana galaxy.
DreadZone Station - the main hub of Gleeman Vox's empire Vox Industries and home to the Battledome. It orbited an unnamed planet surrounded by a number of moons. This space station was enormous. Also, many lanes of traffic, like those on Kerwan, could be seen passing through and across the station. It was cylindrical in design, as evidenced by its massive fly-through hangar bay and circular rim. The station was the factory for Vox's merchandise, his media center, weapons manufacturing, and so on. Many heroes had living quarters here before the station was destroyed by Vox in an attempt to gain the biggest ratings in the galaxy. This is also where you upgrade your bots and where you "live".
- Advaced Qualifier - Prove that your worthy to compete in DreadZone
- Grist for the Mill - Kill all the enemies
- The Big Sleep - Kill the enemies when your health continually decreases
- Manic Speed Demon - Defeat all the enemies in 90 seconds
- The Tower Of Power - Make it to the tower of power
- Climb The Tower Of Power - Make it the top of the tower of power
- Perfect Chrome Finish - Dont get hit and destroy all the enemies.
- Close and Personal - You only have your wrench to destroy enemies with.
- Static Deathtrap - Use your wrench to defeat the enemies
- Marathon - Stop the countdown by hacking the orbs or you blow up
- Reactor Battle - Kill Reactor
- Zombie Attack - Survive for 2 minutes while your being attacked by zombies
- Heavy Metal - Fight big robots
- EndZone - Dont let the robots make it past you and get to the endZone
- Murphys Law - you only have 1 weapon each round
- Air Drop - Survive for three minutes being bombarded by cannons
- Eviscerator - Defeat the Eviscerator
- Higher Ground - Make it up the Tower of Power again
- The Corkscrew - Activate grind rails to make it to the end
- Swarmer Surprise - ALOT of swarmers, kill them
- Accelerator - You will become increasingly faster when you kill enemies
- Ace Hardlight Battle - Kill Ace Hardlight
- Dynamite Baseball - Survive
- Less is More - Your ammo and health drain while your fighting so win fast
Catacrom Four - Catacrom Four laid deep in the Shadow Sector and was filled with ancient ruins. In actuality it was a robot burial ground, so travelers had to be careful about robot zombies poking their heads above ground level and taking a swipe at them. Due to its status as a burial ground, Catacrom Four likely hosted only a minimal living population. Catacrom Four is full of surprises, both on the surface and beneath. It is also DreadZone's starter course and where Ace Hardlight killed Captain Starshield.
Catacrom Four is a rocky yet vegetated world with many caves and canyons. It hosts a cloudy, gloomy atmosphere.
- Valley of Heroes - Defeat all the enemies and make it through the valley
- On the Prowl - Find the Landstalker
- All Aboard the Landstalker - Use the Landstalker to make it to the Burial Dome
- Rise Up - Defeat all the zombies in the burial dome
- Hoverbike Madness - Race through the checkpoints and don't die
- Destruction Derby - Use the Landstalker to destroy as many enemies in the time limit
- Monuments of Death - Destroy the ancient statues using explosives
Sarathos - A hellish alien swamp world with a very gassy atmosphere. Sarathos is inhabited by Leviathans, monstrous and very agressive scorpion-like beasts that lurk in the swamps. The average Leviathan's monstrous nature was matched only by the King Leviathan, a much larger and more dangerous Leviathan that resided in a combat arena built by the Vox construction team. Like many other planets in the Shadow Sector, Sarathos was used by Gleeman Vox as a DreadZone challenge course.
- Alien Soil - Find the alien combat arena and hack your way in.
- Sarathos Sprint - Locate the Puma Vehicle.
- Where the Leviathans Roam - Get control of all the control points to access the the King leviathans lair
- King Of the Leviathans - Defeat the King Leviathan
- Check Me Out - Race the hoverbike through the checkpoints
- Swamp Fever - Use the Landstalker to destroy all the leviathans before the time runs out.
Kronos - A planet similar to Koros, and it is here where Shellshock roams. The Dark Cathedral is the biggest building in the city that was once a cathedral but was the taken over by Shellshock. Kronos is also a planet with an abundance of grind rails. It is home to a massive and highly-advanced city that took on a dark and sinister appearance, created for a fearsome atmosphere. It was not uncommon for storms to occur on this planet. The city on Kronos was possibly one of the largest in the Shadow Sector.
- Infiltrate the Cathedral - Hack the controls for the spotlight to gain access to the Dark Cathedral
- Introducing Shellshock - Defeat Shellshock ( for the first time )
- Enemies are such a grind - Take the grind rails and dont die
- Infiltrate the Cathedral, part 2 - Hack the second Spotlight
- Shellshock Returns! - Fight your way to the Cathdral that has now opened
- Fight to the Cathdral - Continue going to the Cathdral
- Showdown with Shellshock - Defeat Shellshock permanently
- Night Flight - Destroy all the turrets with the Hovership
- Inverted Action - Continually hack the orbs to stop the walls from crushing you while enemies attack you
- Dark City Arenas - Fight through several rounds of typical arena challenges.
Shaar - icy planet that is the site of various mysterious ancient temples. The icy tundra made survival a struggle. Little is known about the nature of the temples or who built them, although the existence of "the Ancient Guardians of Shaar" has been hinted by DreadZone paint jobs. After the temples were abandoned, Gleeman Vox had them turned into a DreadZone battlecourse.
- Return to the Deathbowl - Fight your way to the Landstalker.
- Landstalker Stalkin` - Capture the nodes with the Landstalker.
- As the Wrench Turns - Capture the nodes and survive.
- Assault on the Frozen Tundra - You only have a few weapons available and you have to capture the nodes
- Shoot to Kill - Target shooting with the Landstalker
- Whack-A-Swarmer - Kill the required number of swarmers in the time limit
- Robots in a Barrel - Eliminate the enemies
Orxon - A heavily-industrialized world filled with Raritanium mines, which caused the horrendous pollution that has rendered the planet virtually uninhabitable. Most Blargs were forced to wear oxygen masks in order to survive in the poisonous atmosphere. Orxon was used as a gauntlet course for DreadZone contestants, and the world had been "terraformed", as it is raining. The planet returns from the original Ratchet and Clank, however the game makes no significant try to make you realise that.
- Labyrinth of Death - Unlock the forcefields and kill all the enemies in the maze.
- Node Overload - Destroy the Blargian mining Drill.
- Refinery Ambush - Hack your way through the processing factory.
- Chains of Villany - Use the Landstalker to save the people from certain death
- Swarming the Gauntlet - Kill all the swarmers
- Scoring with the Blarg - More target shooting with the Landstalker
The Valix Belt - A group of asteroids in the Shadow Sector that are home to the Valix Lighthouse. The lighthouse projected a beam that prevented any passing ships from crashing into the asteroids or the black hole. It is Ratchet's job to reactivate the lighthouse during his battles on DreadZone.
If one were to look around as soon as they entered the Valix Asteroid Belt, a black hole could be seen in the distance pulling small debris and asteroids.
- Lost and Found - Locate the Hovership
- Space Ace - Fly around the asteroids and find safe landing place
- Power Up! - Reactivate the power stations to start up the Lighthouse
- Let the Light shine through - Redirect the light to activate the Gamma Energy Beam.
- Time Extension! - Fly through the asteroids within the time limit
- Your Land is My Land - Retake the nodes
Torval - A deserted planet that was the site of various toy factories belonging to Gleeman Vox of the Vox Media Empire. Vox's line of Ace Hardlight action figures were built on Torval, but the factory was eventually shut down due to bad sales. The factory remains soon became infested with robot zombies. After the factory was shut down, Vox had the abandoned factory turned into a DreadZone battlecourse. A planet that resembles Torval can be seen in the sky from Stratus City on Kortog, which hints that Torval may be close to the Polaris Galaxy.
- Hoverbike or Bust - Deactivate the forcefield to unlock the hoverbike
- Seek and Destroy - Destroy the flying drones by chasing them with the hoverbike
- The Turn on - Activate the nodes to find the hidden escape pod
- Blast of fresh Air - Destroy the Ace Hardlight statue to reveal the escape pod
- Turret Trouble - Use the turret to fight of the DreadZone forces
Stygia - A planet plagued by meteor showers, probably from the nearby Valix Belt, that were only held in check by massive forcefields. If these shields were to fail, Stygia would be destroyed within mere hours. Gleeman Vox turns the forcefields off and sends Ratchet to turn them back on. There are also massive lightning storms on the planet frequently. The city itself is suspended high above the surface, possibly explaining the rough weather.
- Junking the Jammers - Use the landstalker to destroy the jamming devices that are sabotaging the forcefields
- Energy Collector - Shut down the lightning collectors
- Shields Up! - Reactivate the planetary defense shield
- No challenges
Maraxus - A desert world that was at some point used as a prison for troublemakers around the Shadow Sector. The Maraxus Prison is heavily guarded by Air Patrols that used Bogos as weapons. The Maraxus Prison was apparantly abandoned and subsequently used by Gleeman Vox of the Vox Media Empire as a battlecourse for DreadZone. A planet resembling Maraxus could be seen in the sky from Stratus City on planet Kortog, indicating it is close to the Polaris Galaxy.
- Jail Break - Free your first bot from Alpha block
- Total Control - Gain access to Beta Block
- Leave no Man Behind - Locate Delta Block
- Showdown in Delta Block - Release your second bot
- Speed Trap - Race the puma through checkpoints
- Spider on a Wire - More targetshooting with the Landstalker
Ghost Station - The Ghost Station, sometimes reffered to as the Gauntlet of Death, was an area built as a DreadZone suicide mission called the Gauntlet of Doom. This is where Vox sent heroes who were getting on his nerves. It is inhabited by the ghosts of the dead DreadZone soldiers. This means that there are also ghost-zombie-robots on the station.
- The grinding Chase - Get to the stations core using grind rails
- Running the Gauntlet - Traverse the Gauntlet of Doom
- Prison Break - Destroy the Main Computer
- Escape - Use the hovership to destroy the haunted station
- You destroy the station so no challenges
Scorpion Flail - A powerful mace-like weapon, somewhat similar to the Plasma Whip. Unlike the Plasma Whip, however, the weapon's power is massively improved and could even take out bosses in a matter of seconds if upgraded to a very high level. Rather than being swung horizontally, it was discharged then slammed downward into the ground, with impact powerful enough to create earth-tearing shockwaves.
cost - 75,000 bolts
Magma Cannon - A Vox-developed weapon that is given to starting DreadZone contestants. It shoots a blast of magma energy out with each shot, and is similar to weapons such as the Blitz gun, Concussion gun, and Shock blaster. The damage increased if it was used at close range. The weapon was quite effective against swarms of weaker enemies such as Swarmers, although it was not very effective against enemies with more health and often drained ammo very fast when it was used against such foes.
cost - free
Dual Vipers - Ratchet's starting weapon in DreadZone. They have a very fast rate of fire, and they are the best choice for small and medium enemies. They change to the Dual Raptors which fire blue holographic bullets that, when reflecting, have a homing ability on any interactive object (Enemies, vehicles, and the environment). However, they must be in extremely close proximity and the reflective ability also appears to be affected by Aiming Mods and have more power when reflecting. Upon leveling up to 99, the bullets turned multi-coloured .
cost - free
The Arbiter -The Arbiter is usually your first choice against virtually any large enemy in Deadlocked, but especially Executioners, Laser Backs, Dropships, and other high-priority targets. It was rare that an enemy could take more than one shot from a mid-to high-level Arbiter in the easier difficulties. In Hero and Exterminator difficulty, later enemies took around 3 to 5 missiles to destroy.
cost - 60,000 bolts
B6-Obliterator - The B6-Obliterator's grenades aren't as powerful as the Arbiter's rockets, but it is an excellent weapon for all manner of potent Omega Mods. It also upgrades rapidly, and in doing so, gradually acquired a vast area of effect and a respectable amount of knockback. If one had the space to use it, this was a better tool than the Magma Cannon.
cost - 15,000 bolts
Hunter Mine Launcher - Deploys several mines that waited for enemies and then attacked. When upgraded to the Stalker Mine launcher, the mines have the ability to become invisible and when they exploded, two extra mines appeared. This was especially useful with the Mini-Bomb Mod.
cost - 100,000 bolts
Fusion Rifle - Just like the Pulse Rifle and the Flux Rifle from Going Commando and Up Your Arsenal, respectively, but wasn't as useful due to frequent close combat in Deadlocked. It upgraded to the Anti-Matter Rifle at level 10, which could shoot through enemies. You wouldn't often get the chance to use the Fusion Rifle's scope, but it allowed you to eliminate distant enemies safely.
cost - 50,000 bolts
Holoshield Launcher - A weapon that launches a special Holoshield that protected Ratchet from all projectiles that came in contact with it. Unlike the Holoshield glove, regular enemies could not pass and were slightly damaged if they tried, while bosses could pass through the shields easily with damage by doing so.
cost - 20,000 bolts
Miniturret Launcher - Very similiar to the Miniturret Glove. It deployed a spherical metal canister which stuck to the floor. Upon touching the ground, it deployed a bar with a gun mounted on it in a vertical position. This turret fired on any enemies within range, until it ran out of ammo (pre-set), or after a certain amount of time.
cost - 100,000 bolts
The Harbinger - The Harbinger was a Weapon created by Vox Industries as an answer to Gadgetron's RYNO and the Apocalator. This devastating superweapon caused a large number of devastating laser blasts to beam down upon any enemies in the vicinity, causing instant and total annihilation. At V10, it upgraded into the even more powerful Supernova.The technology used in the weapon was directly stolen from the RYNO meaning that this might as well be a RYNO.
cost - 2,000,000 bolts
- Charge Boots
- Gravity Boots
Along with the standard Ratchet singleplayer game, Deadlocked features a more robust online component than seen in Insomniac's previous online effort, Ratchet and Clank Up Your Arsenal. Shortly after release, the game earned a reputation for extensive stat tracking, which included number of kills with each weapon, kills with vehicles, and various game modes.
- Deadlocked was the first Ratchet and Clank game to feature full on Co-op play. In this mode, the 2nd player played as Clank in a robot suit similar to Ratchet`s.
Multiplayer Game Modes
- Deathmatch: Deathmatch is a classic mode where all players try to kill one another before being killed themselves. Each kill awards the player with a certain number of points, and suicide takes points off of the players total score. Can be played with or without teams.
- Juggernaut: Similar to deathmatch, except one player is super powerful, with more health than other players, fully upgraded weapons and can become invisible. Invisiblity can be toggled on or off, and if on the juggernaut can become invisible by standing still, or becomes visible when he is hit with any weapon. The player that kills the juggernaut becomes the next juggernaut himself.
- Conquest: A game mode where players try to capture various nodes throughout the map to gain bolts. The longer a team holds nodes the more bolts they earn, and the more nodes they hold allows them to earn bolts faster. There are also various ways for players to earn bolts without capturing nodes, as just killing an enemy player earns a total of one bolt, and certain special kills can earn more bolts still. Special kills include killing an enemy with a sniper rifle, or running over them with a vehicle.
- King of the Hill: Players have to stay in a certain glowing area of the map to earn points for their team. Every second that a player from one team is present in the glowing area, their team earns one point. But that rate can be multiplied based on how many other players are in the area.
- Capture the Flag: This mode involves players trying to enter the opposing team's base and steal their flag, which is shaped similar to that of a large wrench. To earn points, a player must steal the flag, escape the opponents base and return it to their own team's base. While holding the flag, the player cannot fire weapons. If the player dies, then the flag will respawn at the opponents base if it is not picked up by a member of your team.
- Clan Battle: This mode pits members of the same clan against members of another clan. While in a clan battle lobby, other non- clan players cannot hear you talk, and only members of your clan can join. All game modes can be played in clan battle.
There are two powerups only accessible through multiplayer online and local play.
- Quad Damage
A temporary powerup giving you 4x the power to ALL of your weapons which usually results in a 1 hit kill.
- Allied Shields
A temporary shield that will surround you for a minute and protect you from heavy damage.
Ratchet: Deadlocked features a wider array of vehicles than any other game in the series, with a total of 4 distinct vehicles, each serving a unique purpose on the battlefield.
- Hoverbike: A fast motorcycle like vehicle, but hovers a short distance above the ground and travels extremely fast. It can fire a quick stream of laser fire at the enemy, and can now strafe and jump, something that was absent the last time the hoverbike was seen in Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando.
- Puma: A jeep of sorts, with a cannon mounted on the top that another player can use, and rapid fire laser cannons on the side.
- Landstalker: A walking battle tank, with 4 large legs extending from a cockpit where the player sits. On each side of the cockpit sits a group of laser guided missle pods, each capable of locking on to 3 enemies each, but have to charge for a short time first. In cases of emergencies, the landstalker can jump upwards quickly.
- Hovership: The only airborne vehicle in the game, the Hovership contains machine guns on the front that the driver can operate. On the rear of the Hovership are mortar launchers that a second player can control, but they only operate when locked on to one or more targets.
In some countries ratings boards are so very paranoid about protecting children that they go as far as to edit the title of a game if a word like dead should appear in it.
In the UK and Australia Ratchet Deadlocked was re-titled Ratchet Gladiator, hilariously the actual game itself never had the word Dead ever removed from its content. Characters in the game were still referred to as wearing deadlock collars for example.