Ever since the release of the PlayStation 5 last November 2020, we were all expecting new groundbreaking next-gen games to be released that will fully utilize this new and powerful hardware. But all we got were remakes and remasters of recently released PS4 games and some devs struggling to have their games playable on older consoles.
I was hesitant to try Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart at first since it would be my first R&C game experience. And also not to be judgemental, I thought it would be a KIDS game that I assumed would not satisfy my hardcore gaming heart.
BUT I WAS HELLA WRONG!
Being an exclusive game for the PlayStation 5, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart boasts breathtaking graphics, instant loading times, and challenging missions (once you bump up the difficulty). The experience is maximized by the interactivity of the dual sense controller, awesome multi-dimensional storyline, and super fun gameplay!
This is truly the first next-gen game for the PS5!
Let’s talk about design
Now, this is my first Ratchet and Clank game. I tried to watch footage of the 2016 game on YouTube but it was blurry. Luckily, I got it on the PS store when it was free. The previous R&C game was already a beauty but the new one is just drop-dead gorgeous with its incredible level of detail.
The developers laid out their hearts on this one to polish every nuance. From bullet markings on the walls, environmental damage done, character design, and up to Ratchet’s fur, every detail was crispy to the bone.
When you go on Photo mode, even the extras of every map are fine to the tip and the environments beautifully rendered. Yup, even the extras are beautiful!
Performance vs Performance RT vs Fidelity
There are three graphic modes you can choose from — Performance, Performance RT (running that buttery smooth 60fps goodness), and Fidelity which runs at max 4k with all the fine details but a lower, last-gen level 30fps.
We need to compare what matters most: Perf vs. Perf RT both run at 60fps but Perf RT adds ray tracing.
Even though it said that the Perf RT would run at a lower resolution, I did not see any decrease in detail. played on a 55-inch 4K TV and a 27-inch 1440p monitor right in my face and the difference isn’t that noticeable. Plus, all of the light reflection makes everything such eye candy!
So unless you want to see every little spec and maybe some screws on the floor run Fidelity otherwise Perf RT is the way to go!
The console’s NAVI Based AMD card was utilized very well. I didn’t experience any frame drops, even with ray tracing enabled. In the most intense scenes of the game where there are lots of things are happening on screen, the game stayed perfectly LOCKED at 60fps! It was such a treat!
The Real MVP next-gen SSD
Aside from the graphics, let’s not forget the real MVP that makes the PS5 next-gen — the custom SSD. This makes loading time inexistent! Also, waiting for the game to boot or load when changing locations is a thing of the past.
The SSD truly shines during the run on Blizar Prime where there’s a fast-paced rail ride where. You’ll need to instantly change dimensions.
This means every time you hit a Blizon crystal, the game loads different areas every time. And the change happens instantaneously!
The soundtrack was okay. It matched pretty well with the futuristic-cyberpunk feel of the game. The quirky sound effects from the dual sense controller, like from reloading or when hit. added an extra sauce to make the game more immersive.
Voice acting was ON-POINT. The voices matched the characters and made them feel more alive and animated. (The albino-hippy-alligator-sage named Gary was making me do the peace sign every time he talks, lol.)
We find ourselves with Ratchet and Clank being celebrated as the heroes they are. Clank fixed up the Dimensionator for Ratchet so he could find others Lombaxes like him across dimensions.
Then suddenly, a huge attack came from their arch-nemesis, Dr. Nefarious. He accidentally gets the Dimensionator and all of the reality goes into shizzz. Then it’s up to you and your dimensional counterpart to save the day.
The story was very much riding on the waves of the whole interdimensional/multiple reality gimmick but still adding a Ratchet & Clank spice to it. While the story is straightforward, it never fails to have interesting plot points and twists to keep you intrigued.
Some of the side missions and collectible recordings in the game also give you a brief background on R&C history. So for those who aren’t familiar with the past versions, the game helps you keep you up to date with the current R&C story.
The dimensional counterparts of R&C give a bit more weight to their story as the Dr. Nefarious of their dimension is more sinister.
The gameplay is a 3rd person point shooter where you can use melee and long-range weapons. Aside from Ratchet, you can also play as a female Lombax named Rivet depending on the planet.
The gameplay reminds me of a combination of Spiderman, Mega man X, Mega Man Legends, Dynasty Warriors, and Crash Bandicoot all into one awesome game. It was thought out properly to seamlessly merge those game mechanics and make the game super fun.
From double jumping while air dashing, changing to multiple arrays of weapons, swinging from one-dimensional rift to another, or just pummeling tons of enemies, you will absolutely have a fun time.
The game is not as frustrating as Demon Souls or NiOh but still packs a challenge at harder difficulties. I played the game on hard and it gave me the right amount of fun and frustrations.
Searching for collectibles is quite easy, too, since the map shows its location as long as you explore specific areas of the map. This can either good or a bad thing depending on the player.
For me, it was a good experience since I didn’t have to explore deeply and waste a lot of time checking every nook and cranny of the map. In the end, it kind of makes the collectible locator useless if you’re the explorer type.
So for those platinum trophy hunters, this one should be an okay challenge.
Just one annoying thing, when you try to climb an area, the character sometimes goes into a free-fall state then dies. It’ll be a problem for players who like to climb and explore everything.
In the game, Bolts act as your in-game currency.
These can be exchanged for goodies like music packs, an extra photo mode, changing how your loot looks like, switching your melee weapon to a fish, and even unlimited ammo!
Your armor can be changed into multiple sets, too. Sony was kind enough to send the Deluxe Edition of the game so I had access to most of the armor and was even able to change the color per part.
The side buddies, Kit, Clank, and Glitch, all have their own mini-puzzles, too, which adds variety to the gameplay.
Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart is a good 12 hours if you play just the main story without skipping the cutscenes. I highly suggest that you don’t grind that much at the start, though, because once you finish the game, a new challenge mode is unlocked and all the rewards will be multiplied.
Weapons, weapons, and more weapons!
The best part of the game for me was the huge arsenal of weapons I could have! As you use a weapon, it levels up and you can buy more upgrades to make it even stronger.
The guns are very situational so you would be forced to use them all as well as defeat challenges. They also come into play when doing combos to produce damage multipliers.
The game even gives a gold skin as a reward once you achieve a certain amount of Bolts. This gives off a very Call of Duty feel for those weapons skin unlockers out there!
The Dual Sense controller is your weapon
The controller provides the most immersive experience of the game. It really mimics the sensation of every action you do. Whether speeding up from rocket boosters or being damaged, the weight of the triggers changes depending on which weapon you’re firing.
After spending some time with this game, I can say that Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is a must-have for all PlayStation 5 owners out there! The awesome graphics are a treat and are accompanied by non-existent loading times and support for new Dual Sense controller features to make for super fun gameplay. I can honestly say that THIS IS NEXT GEN.