Ratchet and Clank return after five years with a new game in the series, Rift Apart; which has been a staple of PlayStation consoles since 2002. Basically, little has changed in all that time, but this new part is truly a showcase for what the PlayStation 5 has to offer.
The PlayStation 5, which was released last year but is still very scarce, is not yet overflowing with large, exclusive titles. But for those who crave something new, there’s Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart . The new part in the beloved series uses the pumped-up possibilities of the game computer to unpack the story technically.
Title characters Ratchet (a Lombax, a kind of feline) and Clank (the robot on his back) are separated from each other in the beginning of the game. They find themselves in different realities as an evil emperor acquires a device that allows him to rule over all dimensions. But the device causes the dimensions to collapse and become semi-connected, merging different realities.
Clank finds in his universe a female congener of Ratchet named Rivet, and vice versa Ratchet also finds an alternate version of Clank. Through several interwoven storylines, Ratchet and Clank must come together to save the world.
An arsenal of crazy weapons
The heroes’ journey takes them to different planets, where hordes of enemies must be defeated. This is done, as is typical for the series, with a large arsenal of weapons. There are rocket launchers, shotguns and snipers, but you can also shoot robots and mushrooms that fight with you. There’s even a weapon that turns enemies into bushes.
You are not just shooting in this action platformer. For example, you can run on certain walls, race through the world on floating shoes, swing on hooks and there are mini games in which you control a small spider-like robot that defeats computer viruses.
There are also dimensional cracks in the game world. You can move yourself there, which makes you teleport to another place. Handy for getting closer to enemies or quickly getting out of the way when it rains bullets.
Power of the PlayStation 5
The game feels like a classic Ratchet & Clank in that regard . The game is linear in design and apart from the dimensional cracks there are few really major innovations. Some areas are ‘open’, but there too the goals are clear and there is little to do outside the main story and some collecting options. In that regard, Rift Apart doesn’t feel like a next-gen title, but stays true to previous installments in the series.
The real power lies in the PS5. Starting the game is lightning fast, the same goes for switching between game worlds. In addition, the planets and characters in Rift Apart look breathtaking. Because of the cartoony style, the story and the use of color it is actually like playing an animated film. CGI movies that tell the story flow seamlessly into the game world, where something is happening everywhere. Even with many enemies, lasers and explosions in view, there is no hiccup.
Watch the trailer for Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
Although the game sometimes feels a bit dated because of its level construction and gameplay, the foundation is strong enough to remain intact in 2021. Add to that the visual splendor, the speed of the game and the innovations in the controller (in terms of sound and vibration), and you have another great title for the PlayStation 5 with Rift Apart.