It is pretty rare for a platforming series to be going strong after 19 years, but thanks to an outstanding 2016 remake we were reminded how amazing Ratchet & Clank truly is. Now with the first sequel to the remake Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart tries to convince you to experience the power of the PS5 … if you can find one.
Rivet and Kit: Rift Apart
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart has the evil Dr. Nefarious up to mischief again, this time tearing holes in dimensions because he thinks his plans through. This results in Ratchet & Clank being separated as they fall into a different dimension.
Dr. Nefarious finds himself in a mysterious world governed by Emperor Nefarious, Ratchet finds himself a new robot companion Kit, and Clank finds himself with a new Lombax named Rivet. These new characters all have their similarities with their original counterparts, but are given enough unique aspects to not be a bland copy and paste exercise. Instead with their unique personalities Rivet and Kit become the stars of the game, even if Kit gets a touch mopey at times.
As with the 2016 remake the game has a fantastic story that is perfectly suited for all ages, with the perfect use of humour to round out the characters and story. It’s like playing a long but brilliant movie that justifies the use of headphones so you don’t miss any great humor during battles when you are too busy fighting to look at the subtitles.
Rift up your PS5
One of the key questions going into the game was how the rifts were going to work gameplay wise and how it was going to use all this power. Basically, in the maps there are a bunch of rifts which you can essentially zip to which will pop you through to another spot. It wasn’t quite what I was expecting as I was kinda hoping it was going to be a bit more ambitious like a Portal type of mechanic.
The way the grunt of the PS5 is used here is for this to be seamless. There are levels where you hit a crystal to switch between dimensions which changes the whole level. This and zipping through portals to go to bonus stages or to move across an arena is absolutely seamless. No loading screens or even a stutter, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart ran so damn smooth that initially I thought it was underwhelming, before taking a moment to realise it seemed underwhelming because it worked so well. It is so good at what it does, it makes it look easy.
It’s not only the Rifts that are new
Ratchet & Clank games have always felt good to play thanks to fun shooting to go with the great platforming. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is no exception with some pretty crazy weapons. We have come to love weapons that make enemies dance or explode them into tiny cubes and this time they are crazy, but not as crazy. Next to a rocket launcher and sniper rifle is the gun that fires a sprinkler that turns enemies into shrubs for a period of time.
So you know, still bonkers.
Rivet and Kit aren’t the only new stars of the game. The mini games have a new contender for my favorite mini games ever with one that has Clank playing essentially a 3D game of Lemmings. He needs to throw orbs that have different powers to get a stream of Clanks to hit the end which was fun as all hell to play. Every time there was a mini game I was gutted when it wasn’t one of the stages.
Same Ratchet & Clank, new Rift
You absolutely don’t need to have played Ratchet & Clank before to enjoy this excellent game. The self contained story will appeal to newbies and veterans of the series alike. With charming characters, fun gameplay, and extraordinary graphics, it is as much a treat to watch as it is to play.