It’s time to immerse yourself in the first adventure of this duo of intergalactic adventurers in a new generation. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is the newest exclusive PlayStation 5 game and brings the protagonists of the same name in the middle of an adventure that starts at a party in celebration of Ratchet, which ends badly.
Dr. Nefarious, the franchise’s main villain, breaks into Ratchet’s party and puts his bullies to disrupt the street parade that was in progress. After a few moments of battles, which serve as a quick and simple game tutorial, we find the real problem that helps to understand the game’s name. Clank presents Ratchet with the Sizer, a kind of weapon capable of allowing travel to other dimensions.
Clank did this with the noble intention that Ratchet could meet the history of the Lombax (Race of Ratchet). However, thanks to the confusion created by Nefarious, the weapon suffers a breakdown and causes several dimensions to be confused with the current of ours heroes. Until, by a fluke of distinction, we end up in a dimension where the villain becomes the emperor of, well, practically the entire universe. This is where the game starts and where we begin to understand why this might be the most fun adventure of the beginning of the PS5.
We started exploring the game universe in Corson V, the City of Nefarious. The capital shows some of the local nightlife and what to expect from the game, where we can navigate through the gameplay of semi-open worlds. Each city has its peculiarities, biomes, NPCs, and enemies, and a lot to explore. The main objectives are shown by pressing R3, but it is also possible to open the map by pressing the DualSense touchpad. It always shows points of interest from previously explored locations that you may have missed, and when we click on one of these points, we have a direction indicator to help find the desired location.
When we arrive in the first city, we look for Clank, who separated from Ratchet due to the trip to this new dimension. After going through the events of the first planet (and to avoid spoilers), let’s say that this is the event responsible for meeting the new character in the game, Rivet.
Rivet is the newest protagonist in the franchise, a Lombax, like Ratchet. Like her counterpart from another dimension, she also has a Nefarious to worry about and a galaxy that needs to be explored to stop the villain’s reign. As much as she is Ratchet’s counterpart – so much so that her gameplay is similar to Ratchet’s (and we’ll talk about that in a moment) – exploring the different planets with her, in addition to her story and motivations, is a lot of fun.
Exploration also helps to understand why this game became PlayStation 5 exclusive. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart has no loading screens, and even side quests or secret stages found inside the main ones don’t. This shows that the game makes good use of the capabilities of the SSD and other technologies available on Sony’s new device. In other stages, for example, with a certain item of the stage, you change to another dimension. This does not interfere with the exploration of the stage and is also done practically instantly.
In Rift Apart, it’s beautiful. A game that most resembles an animation from big studios, like Pixar, for example. Its cinematic scenes are beautiful to see, and the game is not lacking. The game has several options to make the best use of the technologies you have at your disposal. You can even go up to 60 frames per second at a 4K resolution (available with the day-1 patch).
Thanks to that, the worlds are vibrant and colorful, and his frantic action doesn’t weaken the title’s graphic quality. R&C still takes full advantage of the effects available thanks to ray tracing, making everything even more beautiful. And all this technology was well applied in the graphics of the environment and characters. Expressions make them more alive, from smiles in moments of happiness to expressions of pain or sadness. Even the wind from the environment stirs the fur of our favorite Lombax.
The perfect match of the look is made with the game’s sound effects and music. Enemies have their own characteristics and voice. River, Ratchet, Clank, and other characters you know have life and personality. The work also brings the option to enjoy 3D audio if you have a headset compatible with the technology. But if you don’t, no problem. After all, the game uses the DualSense speaker well for secondary sound effects, like items you collect. A simple detail, but that adds more to the final result since the good times of Transistor (remember? That game where the protagonist’s sword spoke to you through that control speaker).
Everything gets even more fun thanks to the combination of these elements with the gameplay. The new Ratchet & Clank has simple gameplay, and you soon become familiar with the commands, and these make good use of the features of the new DualSense. Several of the game’s weapons make use of the controller’s adaptive triggers, where some have more trigger resistance to fire, and others have more than one button function – press halfway to fire just one Annihilator shot, or press all the way down to use your double barrel.
We also have several gloves, which count as weapons, with the craziest grenades, from explosives to one that shoots mini-robots, which hinder your opponents while you detonate them. There’s also a weapon that turns enemies into plants, making them immobile for a second attack. Rebound fires ammo that doesn’t hit opponents directly but hits them as you change position around the target. Anyway, the most different options can be enhanced with the right resources in Ms. Zurkon’s shop.
The same can be said of the unlockable accessories with their progression through the game. They bring new options, such as reaching super-high speeds or reaching previously impossible places, an obvious incentive for exploration and aid in combat. These, like much of the game, leave you free to choose how to engage your enemies. Whether in hand-to-hand combat, weapons at a distance, using your tools to trick them, or even through the cracks scattered across the map, the approach will be totally the one you prefer.
To assist in this fight, we still have armor for Ratchet and Rivet. Divided between head, torso, and legs, several of them have the most different effects and bonuses – ranging from receiving less damage from a certain type of opponent to extra experience. They can be found in secret stages within worlds or in competitions or tasks spread across the universe. And, of course, you can even customize the colors to match your style.
And if you want even more challenge, in addition to the different difficulty levels, which can be adjusted not only at the beginning of the adventure but also at any point in the game, there is a “challenge mode” (let’s call it that again to avoid spoilers) with various tasks worthy of a Hercules from space just waiting for you. And yes, we have good rewards for those who succeed.
Choices and Options
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart has a lot of content to explore. These start as soon as you pass the level and, most of the time, you’re introduced to another two new ones to explore. Its semi-open behavior makes the storyline of progression somewhat linear. However, how much you want to explore each planet is up to you.
As an incentive, there are several collectibles to be found, in addition to the armor, I mentioned above. Gold Bolts bring even more customization to your adventures, from the skin of your close-range weapon (whether it’s Ratchet’s wrench or Rivet’s hammer) to standard bolts (I selected the famous Overcharge energy drink from Sunset Overdrive). There’s even an RPG mode, activated by the Gold Bolts, which shows the damage done on each hit to your opponents (my favorite!). Spybots not only tell more about the history of the universe, but they also release something special if you find them all across the galaxy. And the Lorbes are Lombax orbs of knowledge, which reveal more of the story that Ratchet wanted to know so much.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart brings a new adventure that explores different worlds with new and old characters and a lot of freedom of choice. And while it doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it’s a beautiful adventure, packed with hours of content and actually the most fun game available on PlayStation 5 so far.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
The return of Ratchet & Clank is embellished with spectacular technical achievement but normalized by a rather predictable style of play and level design. However, he lets himself be played with great taste.
- Great 0%