Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart | Review of the first true PS5 graphics benchmark

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart | Review of the first true PS5 graphics benchmark

Ratchet & Clank

There was a period in which the platform of the year was contested, on PlayStation, always by two counterparts: at first there were Crash Bandicoot and Spyro, then came Jak & Daxter and Ratchet & Clank. The road taken, then, by Naughty Dog is there for all to see, with the release of Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin who brought the American software house to a much more mature declination, first addressing the adventures of Nathan Drake in Uncharted and then the stories of Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us.

On the other hand, however, even if Insomniac wanted to focus on other experiments, he has not forgotten his flagship franchise, the one that allowed him to depopulated at the time of the PlayStation 2. With the push of Sony, therefore, Rift Apart, the new chapter starring the Lombax and the most famous robot in the world, was announced as the first real video game developed with the infrastructure of PlayStation 5 in mind. Talking to you today means preparing yourself for an adventure of great impact, which will give you back between ten and fifteen hours of play to dive back into the intergalactic parades of Ratchet & Clank.

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, welcome back to the Galaxy

Five years have passed since the last chapter of the saga, which by the way was a remake of the original episode, released with the goal of supporting the CG film also distributed on Netflix. Rift Apart, however, does not want to resume anything that has happened previously, although the intention may initially seem to continue the events narrated in Into the Nexus: on the other hand, Nefarious has been defeated, Ratchet & Clank are celebrated as saviors of the galaxy, but finding oneself in front of this adventure as virgins of previous experience is not a problem anyway. Rift Apart can be a perfect entry level for anyone who wants to discover the magic behind Insomniac's work, but at the same time it will satisfy all fans of the first hour, eager to find out what happened to Captain Qwark, Mister Zurkon and his family, as well as all the characters we met throughout the saga.

Beyond the time placements, the time has come for Clank to once again be kind and cordial towards his travel companion Ratchet: the Lombax, as known, has been traveling for years in search of its family, being recognized as the last of its kind. The melancholy experienced by the protagonist is a recurring element in the saga, despite the very ironic and playful style: the subtext of the duo, however, is about to be rewritten, because Clank has the Dimensioner with him, a weapon that is able to open the doors of other realities present in the galaxies, so as to allow Ratchet to find his family.

In the moment before the activation of the weapon, however, Nefarious, despite the defeat, manages to intervene to steal the sophisticated device of Clank, giving life to a problem of dimensions and welcoming us into the multiverse that Sony is now making us admire with many other productions. Ratchet & Clank are thus projected into a reality where the course of events is different from what we know, with Nefarious who is an undisputed emperor - and less messy than his homegrown counterpart - against whom Rivet tries to rebel: the last Lombax of the new dimension.

More than what happened in previous iterations of the saga, this time Rift Apart seems to have something to tell that is able to go deeper into the subtext of the protagonists. On the other hand, the melancholy now becomes shared, giving rise to a sort of dualism that involves the two Lombaxes and tries to make them feel less alone than expected. Rivet's character is characterized in a much more angular way than Ratchet, becoming she almost reluctant to befriend Clank at first. Equipped with a mechanical arm and much more arrembante, so much so as to throw herself madly against the opponents of turns, in some moments it will prove to be even more functional than the male counterpart, dressing as a banner of a woman power that gives a boost to the narration of Rift Apart. in addition, towards a mature content and at the same time conjugable towards a wider range of gamers than those pretexts and palliatives included in the previous chapters.

Unleash your arsenal, Lombax

If of the technical sector we will talk shortly, anticipating that it will be a total and overall incensation of the work done by Insomniac, it is inevitable to dwell on an aspect that after the first half of the adventure will affect everyone. The core loop provided for Rift Apart is slightly dull, with ideas that do not risk and that do not try to create gameplay proposals capable of providing dynamism and alternatives to the normal archetype. The number of planets that can already be explored will not be very high, but there will be a backtracking that will affect us at different times, leading us to live a loop that involves the counting, exploration, destruction of the opposing troops and the jump towards a another goal.

Rift Apart has many little exploited ideas on its side, such as dimensional leaps, so much praised during the various presentations: beyond some haggard moments in which Ratchet and Rivet will be able to use the movements very well, interdimensional shifts only work to find secret collectibles, even easily avoidable ones. A little exploited feature, which only offers you the surprise effect at the beginning, but which in the long run will not meet you even in what could be an escape from an encirclement, because you are so busy defending yourself that you will not even fix the scenario looking for a portal in which to escape.

In the same way the battle system has foreseen some fights that after the first 5 hours end up being repetitive: the boss battles, except three of them, are all the same, with opponents using the same patterns and textures. The proposal linked to the UI is also lazy, which often only shows you the life bar of a single boss despite the fact that there are two or even three on the screen. Beyond these imperfections, it is impossible not to emphasize how rewarding the combat system is once our arsenal is unsheathed. Insomniac has always had the peculiar ability to surprise us with any method of mass extermination: from killer mushrooms to the classic robots that can accompany you in battle up to a number of four allies, passing through the executioner and the most classic machine guns or missile shooters. , Ratchet and Rivet will set up a situation so confusing and colorful as to create a living kaleidoscope.

Also with the haptic feedback of the DualSense you will also find yourself being able to use an alternate fire reaching a total stroke of the key, so to be able to quickly decide how to manage your firepower and how to juggle it against your opponents. The rhythm itself has only to benefit from it, especially when to break the otherwise too slavish trend there are puzzles in the metaterminal with Glitch, called to defeat viruses, and puzzles with Clank, which he will have to carry with him of holographic projections. What weighs in the whole ecosystem is the fact that we don't have a well-balanced progress curve, because Ratchet and Rivet will be much more powerful than their opponents can go forward, transforming the arsenal at our disposal into something really too deadly.

The skin of the Lombaxes

We then come to incense everything we found ourselves watching while playing Rift Apart. The technical structure is phenomenal, making Ratchet & Clank the video game that most of all marries the concept of next gen: the lighting work, as well as the high number of polygons at our disposal, combined with an infinite number of effects resulting from use of weapons, jumps, dodges, boots that will allow us to speed up our movement, ends up creating a breathtaking vision. Among other things, every shift between the dimensional gaps is immediate, leading to an immediate change of what surrounds us, without having to wait even a second. Furthermore, each loading between the various planets is often masked by a cutscene that manages to adequately alternate the needs of the gamer with those of the software.

There will be game sessions in which you will find yourself embracing such a rapid flow you hardly want to stop, with the use of rails to jump from one point to another and almost create a sort of QTE well calibrated with your actions, to give life to moments of pure adrenaline. The artistic direction in the same way reaches very high levels, ensuring us always alive environments, which teem with existence and vitality, allowing us to admire the different outposts of the galaxy in which we find ourselves. With an Italian dubbing that enriches the vision, it will seem to have before our eyes a real Lombax, which we would almost like to go and embrace for the fun it has given us all these years.

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