Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart Review

Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is the best game on PlayStation 5. It’s been a while since we’ve seen our favorite Lombax and his robot buddy in action, but their latest outing is more than worth the wait. The 2022 movie tie-in game was good, but it featured a safer, watered-down version of the series that was clearly created for the big screen first and foremost. Rift Apart is really a go back to form for the series full of great combat, thrilling setpieces, and sharp writing, and I loved every second of it.

As should you couldn’t tell in the trailers, this can be a good-looking game. Most comments are probably going to mention Pixar or something like that along those lines, and so i won’t make that comparison. Still, the visuals actually are that impressive. It’s not only the raw visual fidelity that impressed me, either. The ray-traced reflections and high-resolution textures are nice to check out, sure, but it’s the sheer degree of detail in each and every environment that elevates farmville to another level. Every environment is ridiculously busy. From the neon streets of Nefarious City towards the swamps of Sargasso, there’s just so much detail to take in in each and every scene. A lot of love was clearly put in the animations as well.  There’s painstaking focus on detail in every cutscene, weapon animation, and character model, and each area of the game feels handcrafted and unique. This is a true next-gen graphical showcase. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever used photo mode or even the share button that much.

The default graphics setting for Rift Apart is Fidelity mode, which supplies a native 4K image locked at 30 FPS. However, you will find three separate modes to choose from. Performance slightly drops the resolution to some dynamic 4K picture but doubles the framerate to 60 FPS. There’s also a Performance RT mode featuring dynamic 4K at 60 FPS with ray-tracing enabled. After testing the 3 modes, you can’t go wrong with them. Fidelity mode obviously offers the sharpest picture, however i found that both Performance modes were still fairly sharp. If you’ve messed around with these settings in Spider-Man: Miles Morales, then you definitely curently have an idea of how these graphics modes perform. Whether you would like the absolute best-looking picture or perhaps a silky smooth framerate, Insomniac has thankfully provided a solution for everyone.

This is also the best use of the DualSense controller with a mile. Returnal’s raindrops were an okay use of haptic feedback, but Rift Apart takes things to the next level. This game has the most creative and artistic uses for the DualSense’s adaptive triggers, haptics, and controller speaker, to the point where some weapons just flat out aren’t as fun to use without one enabled. Each weapon features its own unique ways to use the controller. The Enforcer shotgun fires just one barrel with a half pull from the trigger and both barrels if you pull the trigger all the way, for example. Most weapons incorporate a half trigger purpose of some kind, but each weapon and gadget includes a distinct feel because of the controller’s wide array of features.

The whole concept of Rift Apart is hopping between dimensions, and the PS5’s lightning-fast SSD really shines here. Each planet has optional pocket dimensions, and you may instantly walk into a small level immediately after opening them. Also, certain levels have crystals that load a completely new version of a planet when struck, and this transition is instantaneous. It’s seriously impressive. The burden times even include non-dimension hopping shenanigans. Taking off in one planet and landing on another occur in seconds, only needing a fast fade to black to load another zone. Irrrve never had to wait for anything, which is crazy considering the number of assets this game needs to load at a moment.

Of course, this can be a game and not simply a tech showcase. Thankfully, Rift Apart is a stellar gaming. As always, there’s a wide arsenal of wacky weapons to use. Each weapon can be leveled up just by utilizing it, eventually unlocking a new form at level 5. Each gun also has a large grid of bonuses to unlock by spending Raritanium, which can be found by exploring planets. Each upgrade gets a minor stat increase, but when you completely surround special yellow upgrades by buying all of the minor upgrades around the grid around them, you’ll unlock something cool for your weapon. The upgrades all feel worthwhile, too. No guns begin weak, however they do feel noticeably stronger when you level them up and obtain a few Raritanium upgrades to their name. The sport also showers you in Raritanium if you do the smallest amount of exploring, so you’ll be able to always buy upgrades in large quantities when you reach a store.

Using these weapons may be the main draw of Rift Apart, and combat encounters are extremely enjoyable. Insomniac knows just what enemies to throw to you and which enemy types to pair to create fights interesting. Arenas are also beautifully designed, giving you lots of possibilities to alter your gadgets like the grappling hook and rift tether. Boss fights really are a bit disappointing because none of them really change things up whatsoever, but they’re not bad, just uninteresting. Obviously, nonstop shooting would get really old really fast, but the pacing in this game is amazing. It’s all killer, no filler. Lots of that's owed to the variety of levels. Some planets are short and linear with many different shooting, while some are massive and allow you to explore on your own if you would like. Just when the shooting begins to get old, the game will throw a cutscene at you. Just when things get slow, you’ll reach an exciting setpiece with rail grinding and explosions. It’s easy to lose track of just how long you’ve been playing because the game does an excellent job of keeping you hooked.

Also, side content feels meaningful. Characters always have something new to say when you go back to a planet, and completing side missions and looking for collectibles just gives the excellent writing and dialogue more time to shine. The rewards will always be valuable as well. The sport doesn’t accept just providing you with bolts or Raritanium for your trouble. To me, the optional side missions are simply as essential as the main missions. Even the side missions focused on gathering things to fill a checklist are still fun because they give you more time to experience having a planet’s mechanics. You’ll also get to listen to extra dialogue and banter that you simply wouldn’t often hear otherwise. It may also help that there’s usually just one side mission per planet, keeping you moving to new locations and stopping things from getting too repetitive.

The only thing I loved a lot more than Rift Apart’s gameplay was its characters. Ratchet and Clank are great of course, but newcomer Rivet absolutely steals the show. Seriously, if Rivet doesn’t return later on sequels, i quickly will be immensely disappointed. The game utilizes a dual protagonist system though, so you’ll be swapping between both Lombaxes regularly as you hop from planet to planet. There are other new characters that I won’t spoil, but just know that every original character in Rift Apart is wonderful. The game has a simple plot on paper, but the character interactions and side characters really make the story something. A lot of the story happens during gameplay, too. The game comes with some good cutscenes, but many dialogue happens when you’re exploring for collectibles or shooting the right path through goons. It helps everything feel natural and provides more life to the characters since they’re constantly reacting to what’s going on. If only I possibly could talk more about the story and characters, but the reveals and jokes are best experienced firsthand.

Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is definitely an absolute blast from beginning to end. I loved every second of it, and I was sad if this was over. Despite the fact that I’ve already platinumed the game, I’m still likely to go back through for another playthrough on Challenge Mode. Not only is it an incredible game at its core, but it’s also the first true taste of next-gen. Insomniac are technical wizards, and that i can’t wait to determine what else they are doing with the PlayStation 5 because the console matures. Rift Apart cements Ratchet and Clank as one of PlayStation’s premier franchises, and that i really want to see much more of Ratchet and Rivet soon.

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