Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is a 2021 platformer and action-adventure video game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment. It is the 16th installment in the Ratchet & Clank series, announced June 11, 2020. It is also a sequel to Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus.
The gameplay of Rift Apart allows the player to play both as Ratchet and Rivet, although they both play identically, sharing weapons and gadgets. It retains elements of previous Ratchet & Clank games, involving gunplay, collection of bolts, upgradable weapons and gadgets. Though most of Ratchet's moveset is identical to that of the previous Ratchet & Clank (2016 game), he has two new glove gadgets in his Omniglove that he acquires early into the game. The first of which is known as the Rift Tether; allowing him to pull himself towards rifts to quickly travel across battlefields or to reach inaccessible areas. He can also use it to pull open gaps in the damaged dimensions to access pocket dimensions. The second is called the Phantom Dash, allowing him to run horizontally along specific wall panels and perform a short dash forward that will make him intangible for a very brief period to phase through barriers and enemy attacks. The Hoverboots also return with new enhancements and can be used much easier for use in and out of combat. They can be used by holding and pumped using or repeatedly to activate the accelerator.
Ratchet and Rivet have twenty weapons in total: fifteen new and five returning. New weapons are the Burst Pistol, the Shatterbomb, The Enforcer, Mr. Fungi, the Negatron Collider, the Topiary Sprinkler, the Ricochet, the Lightning Rod, the Drillhound, the Void Repulser, the Cold Snap, the Bombardier, the Blackhole Storm, the Headhunter and the RYNO 8. Weapons returning from previous games are the Glove of Doom, the Buzz Blades, the Warmonger, the Bouncer and the Pixelizer.
The Shatterbomb is an explosive weapon similar to the Fusion Grenade. The Enforcer is a double-barrel shotgun resembling the Shock Cannon, which uses the DualSense controller's adaptive triggers to give tension; if the player holds their finger down half-way they can fire one trigger, or two if they pull it all the way.. The Topiary Sprinkler resembles the Miniturret Glove, but instead shoots streams of water, that cause plants to sprout on anything it touches and traps enemies for a brief period of time.
In an alternate dimension, a Lombax Resistance fighter named Rivet is on an undercover mission to steal an infobot in a robot filled dystopian city. Before escaping with it however, she pursues an organic citizen being hunted down by one of the city's troopers and rescues them. Soon after, the city's patrolling forces track her down to retrieve the stolen infobot and she retreats.
The Festival of Heroes
Meanwhile in Ratchet and Clank's dimension, the Festival of Heroes is being held in Megalopolis on Corson V, to celebrate the duo's many achievements in heroism, although they remark it has been years since they did anything heroic. The festival is hosted by Captain Qwark, Skidd McMarx and Rusty Pete. Qwark also announces that Clank has a gift to present to Ratchet at the front of the parade route and the two begin heading towards it. The celebration is interrupted however by the recently rebranded Goons-4-Less as a bounty has been put on Ratchet and Clank's heads. After breaking through the attacking goons, they reach the front float, where Clank reveals that he has rebuilt the broken Dimensionator from the ending of their last adventure. He presents it to Ratchet, so he can travel the dimensions and find his species; the Lombaxes, who are lost in another dimension.
Before Ratchet can voice his issues however, the device is stolen by Dr. Nefarious in his Party Crasher ship, who hired the Goons in place of his assistant Lawrence after he had been placed on paid paternity leave. Nefarious attempts to use the Dimensionator against them but Ratchet impulsively shoots the Phase Quartz power core and causes mass dimensional chaos to begin occurring. After taking a piece of the chipped phase quartz that landed near him, Ratchet uses it to pull himself towards the rifts and yank open gaps in the damaged dimension as part of a new makeshift gadget known as the Rift Tether.
Upon catching back up to Nefarious, Ratchet and Clank fight him in his ship and defeat him. Nefarious; sick of frequently being defeated, puts his true plan into motion with the Dimensionator and uses the device to bring the three of them to a dimension where the Doctor always wins. After arriving on a rooftop in a neon lit, rainy city, the Dimensionator finally goes critical from being damaged and explodes. Clank awakes in another part of the city and finds his right arm has been blown off and his legs are locked into their retracted state. Rivet drops down behind him and after seeing the dimensional chaos happening and hearing him admit fault to it, she takes Clank with her against his will. Dr. Nefarious awakens in a throne room and is mistaken for being his counterpart in this dimension; known as Emperor Nefarious. The Emperor's Assistant remarks he has returned early from his conquest and the Doctor ecstatically takes his place on the throne.
Ratchet finally awakens and finds a wanted poster of Rivet, wondering where he could be. He soon finds he is in a place named Nefarious City on a dimensional counterpart of Corson V. He meets Ms. Zurkon; a counterpart of Mrs. Zurkon, who is an ally of the Resistance force against the evil tyrannical Emperor Nefarious and his Empire, who rule the entire known universe in this dimension. Ms. Zurkon offers to sell him weapons but suddenly, Rivet runs past him with Clank on her back and escapes in her ship. Ms. Zurkon informs Ratchet that only royal starships can leave the planet without being shot down and to find one he must look for a Resistance member known as the Phantom at Club Nefarious. The Phantom is revealed to be a counterpart of Skidd McMarx and has his cover blown at the Club, before being pursued by the Empire's robotic enforcers; the Nefarious Troopers. Ratchet chases after Phantom and defends him from the attacking troopers. Recognizing him as a Lombax like Rivet, Phantom upgrades Ratchet's Omniglove with Resistance tech and gives him a gadget known as the Phantom Dash, allowing him to run along wall panels, become intangible for a short period to pass through checkpoint barriers and avoid enemy attacks. Phantom informs Ratchet that Rivet always goes to her base on planet Sargasso after her missions.
He makes Ratchet a deal and agrees to help him get a royal starship to leave the planet and pursue Rivet and Clank, if he helps him with hacking a propaganda blimp at the Nefarious Day Spa. Ratchet agrees and provides cover for Phantom from the Troopers, so he can program a message into the blimp for the downtrodden citizens of the city. Phantom then gives Ratchet a hacking program named Glitch, so he can use the Emperor's private shuttle to get into Nefarious Tower and steal a royal starship. Suddenly however, Phantom gives himself up to the Nefarious Troopers to try and fight the Empire's corruption from the inside out. Glitch clears the Zeta Virus infections in the shuttle's access console and Ratchet succeeds in stealing a ship after narrowly escaping Dr. Nefarious and the Troopers.
On the way to Sargasso, Clank attempts to explain what is happening to Rivet, but she refuses to believe his story. A distress call then appears on her ship's computer from her friends who live on the planet; the Morts. A Nefarious Seekerpede suddenly clips her ship and sends it crashing to the ground, forcing them to make their way to the Morts' Gelatonium factory using other means. On the way, Rivet runs into Ms. Zurkon who informs the Lombax that she has added Ratchet's vendor account to Rivet's so the two now share purchases. She refers to Ratchet only as their "mutual friend on Nefarious City", leaving Rivet confused. To cross the planet's acid swamps however, they will need to ride on the back of a Speetle and attempt to track one down. Clank also attempts to contact Ratchet with his communicator but finds that it has also been broken. Several Speetles escape but Rivet spots one heading into a pocket dimension and follows it inside by using her own Rift Tether built into her robotic arm to pull open a gap in the damaged dimensions. Inside the pocket dimension they spot the Morts' helperbot; Maynard and follow the Speetle until it hides in one of it's nests. Rivet hits the nest, causing a Speetle to jump out and allowing her to finally jump on it's back. Maynard acts as a guide and leads Rivet along a path out of the pocket dimension and back to the Gelatonium factory using the speeding Speetle. After arriving, Rivet finds that the Goons-4-Less have taken the Morts' hostage and demand they give up the location of their bounty. Clank tries to explain that they had travelled through the dimensional vortex and are looking for Ratchet but Rivet continues to dismiss his claims.
Once all the Goons at the factory are defeated, Rivet checks the Morts are okay and they assure her that they are fine but some of the other Morts are trapped inside a large, purple dimensional anomaly next to the factory. Clank offers to inspect it as he has experience with dimensional anomalies from his previous adventure with Ratchet. Upon touching it, Clank has his consiousness transported to a space between dimensions and meets the astral form of a man named Gary who has been searching for someone like Clank to help him fix the dimensions. Gary introduces himself as a cosmic prophet and resides on planet Savali, studying in it's vast Interdimensional Archives. He helps Clank with learning to repair dimensional damage and warns that the damage caused by the Dimensionator will continue to spread and eventually lead to a Dimensional Cataclysm unless it can be reversed by that which caused it; with another Dimensionator. After Clank learns more about dimensionality and how to reverse it's damage, he eventually is able to repair the anomaly and reawakens on Rivet's back. Once the Morts are freed from inside the anomaly, Rivet meets back up with a female Mort she is good friends with and gives her a part from the Space Pirates needed to finish fixing a starship. While the Mort is fixing the ship, Rivet travels back to her secret hideout, plugs Clank into her main computer system and looks through his memory banks to find the truth about him. The events that occurred in Megalopolis play out on her monitor in which she witnesses the Dimensionator, Dr. Nefarious and Ratchet. She is shocked to see a Lombax and finally views the Dimensionator explode in Nefarious City. Rivet wakes Clank up again and admits that he was telling the truth about everything. She reveals to him that she has a rather hard time trusting robots after her many bad experiences with them from the Emperor, his followers and pirates in which she has lost friends and during one such conflict; her arm, leaving her with some degree of PTSD.
Once the Infobot she had is decryted, it begins sending out a signal and the Seekerpede that was patrolling the planet suddenly breaks open the wall of her hideout using it's giant mandibles. The Seekerpede uses a tractor beam to pull all metallic objects towards it and it mistakenly takes Clank instead of the Infobot. Rivet; plagued with guilt over her treatment of Clank, chases after the Seekerpede on a Speetle to save him and launches onto it's back, ramming the machine's flight stabilizer. Upon it being grounded, she battles the craft and eventually destroys it's Nefarious Trooper pilot. Once she saves Clank, Rivet offers to help him get a part to fix his broken communicator and the two hop into the new ship the Morts have fixed up for her. Before leaving the planet, Rivet finally checks the contents of the Infobot and finds that it is a target hitlist of the Emperor's key opposers; Phantom, Moydoy, Captain Quantum, Clatchkey and Rivet herself. She posts the list to the Resistance's network to warn them of the danger and the two take off in their ship.
Zurkie's Gastropub and Battleplex
On the way to their destination, Clank laments the actions that lead him and Ratchet to end up in this situation and blames himself for his short-sightedness in showing off the Dimensionator in public. The two arrive at Zurkie's Gastropub and Battleplex; a refuelling depot and Zurkon family-run business floating in the debris of planet Scarstu that had been destroyed years ago by the Emperor. Rivet and Clank go to the Gastropub and look for Zurkie; the establishment's owner and founder. Zurkie is a counterpart of Mr. Zurkon but is instead a pacifist with a stern violence restriction in his Gastropub.
To get the part to fix Clank's communicator, Rivet searches for the Space Pirate that she knows has it and goes to the bar to ask Zurkie if he has seen them. Before Zurkie can answer however, the robot Space Pirate in question interrupts and quickly makes himself known. He is Pierre Le Fer; a counterpart of Rusty Pete and the first mate of Captain Quantum. Rivet has known Pierre for a long time and is quite familiar with his antics. He attempts to flirt with her and flaunts his ego but Rivet repeatedly and flatly demands he hand over the part. She finally decides to challenge him to a fight for it but Zurkie comes between the two and tells them to settle their quarrel in the Battleplex. The son of Zurkie and Ms. Zurkon; Zurkon Jr. is the mastermind of the Battleplex and arena announcer. He introduces Rivet and her opponents whilst providing his own brand of maniacal commentary for the fights. Rivet battles and defeats several waves of Pierre's crew until she is set to fight the pirate himself. Despite Pierre's vain boastings, he is in fact rather cowardly and feigns a sprained ankle to avoid figting Rivet himself and sends a pirate Marauder named François to battle in his stead. After a tense fight, Rivet eventually emerges victorious against François and Pierre bitterly throws the part to her but not before first threatening that he will get his revenge for their defeat.
Rivet and Clank return to the Gastropub and sit down at a free table where Rivet inserts the part into Clank's chest compartment and is able to get his communicator working again. While Ratchet is flying the stolen starship towards Sargasso, Clank activates his communicator and is able to make contact with him. Clank assures Ratchet he is fine and is currently with the Lombax that had taken him. Rivet sheepishly greets Ratchet over the communicator and he relays the information that Dr. Nefarious has taken over as the Emperor of Rivet's dimension. Clank concludes that to begin forming a solution to their problems, they will need to build a new Dimensionator. He recounts what Gary had told him earlier about the Interdimensional Archives and Ratchet volunteers to travel to Savali and ask for his help in constructing a Dimensionator. While Ratchet goes to Savali, Clank suggests he and Rivet go to the planet Blizar Prime to acquire the Phase Quartz needed to power the device. Unbenounced to the three however, the Emperor's Assistant had been eavesdropping on their plans in the Gastropub the entire time. Upon returning to their ship, a public broadcast from the Emperor's office plays where Dr. Nefarious announces he is offering a large bounty for the dead or alive capture of Ratchet and Rivet. The Assistant's spying also informed him that they would be arriving on Savali and Blizar Prime soon, where he has already sent Nefarious Trooper strike teams to intercept their arrivals.
Ratchet arrives on the planet and quickly runs into Gary who recognizes him from his research on Clank's history. He instructs Ratchet to make his way to the Interdimensional Archives just past the Monks' settlement and find his apprentice, who can help him with building a Dimensionator. The Nefarious Troopers however have arrived on the planet and are attacking Monktown while searching for a Lombax. Ratchet destroys the occupying troopers and makes his way to the Archives, however the structure detects an interdimensional anomaly and enters it's defensive mode; rising up on it's robotic legs to walk itself away from any danger.
Upon it rising, a small robot falls from the top and lands in front of Ratchet and he realizes she is Gary's apprentice. To get back up to the Archives and acquire the Dimensionator blueprints, Ratchet suggests to her that they team up but she is quite reluctant and insists she would not make a good partner. Ratchet makes a deal with her that in the event something goes wrong which he assures won't, they will go their seperate ways with no questions asked. She agrees but maintains their alliance is only temporary. To get onto the Archives again they will need help from the monks, Gary's acolytes. They however have been taken prisoner at their three temples by the invading Nefarious Troopers and placed inside forcefields. The apprentice gives Ratchet a pair of Lombax Hoverboots that will allow him to quickly traverse across the planet's Urfdah Mesa. Ratchet recalls he did not catch her name and she meekly introduces herself as KT-7461. They free the monks at the Badlands Temple and at the Primeval Forest Temple, Ratchet defends KT-7461 from waves of troopers while she disables the forcefields through it's access terminal. Whilst travelling between the temples, Ratchet proposes giving KT-7461 a nickname but she is unsure about his suggestions. The Mountain Temple required Ratchet to pass a series of dangerous time trials in order to ascend to the top quickly with his Hoverboots or the track he is on would collapse. After destroying the Nefarious Sniperbots guarding the monks at the mountain's summit, KT-7461 found the forcefield's access terminal was infected with Zeta Viruses and using it would cause her to be infected aswell. Ratchet sent Glitch in to clear out the viruses and bring the machinery back online, allowing KT-7461 to free the monks.
Once all of the monks are freed, Ratchet gets warped back to Monktown through one of their rifts and Gary works with his acolytes to open a path through multiple rifts, allowing Ratchet to boost with great speed up to the top of the Archives. Upon reaching the Archives however, they discover that the Nefarious Troopers are already there, seeking to plunder it's contents to present to the Emperor and convert the structure into a war machine. Whilst fighting them off, KT-7461 frets that some of the Archive's contents are irreplacable and the troopers might damage them. Ratchet succeeds in destroying the attacking troopers and powers up the Helix Generator to open the rift inside the Archive's vault. Inside, KT-7461 is relieved that the Dimensional Map and the rest of the contents are safe. Ratchet discovers Lombax language writing inside the vault and confides in KT-7461 that his father Kaden was the keeper of the original Dimensionator and lamented that he couldn't keep it out of the wrong hands like his father wished. After scanning the Dimensionator blueprints, KT-7461 informs Ratchet that the only place with the facilities powerful enough to create it are at the Emperor's Kedaro Station on planet Cordelion; the most secure outpost in the galaxy. She then decides that of Ratchet's name suggestions, she liked Kit the most and began using it from that point forward. Suddenly several Nefarious Dropships began bombing the Archives to destroy it, forcing Kit to very reluctantly transform into her aggressive Warbot form to ward off the attackers. She then points her weapon at Ratchet but snaps back to her senses and transforms back. She dourly explains to Ratchet that she was a creation of the Nefarious Empire and built to be a powerful weapon to keep the Emperor's galaxy secure. She was naively manipulated by the Emperor and fled her role in great shame after she severely injured someone on one of her patrols. Years ago she exiled herself to the remote planet Savali to keep others safe from her own destructive capabilities and devoted her life to building and preserving knowledge in the Archives. Ratchet is not soured by this however and wants Kit to continue travelling with him as a team. She is surprised at this but hesitantly accepts and remarks that she will continue to try. Once the Archives are safe, Kit and Ratchet leave for planet Cordelion to use the Kedaro station's Rubion Forge to build a new Dimensionator.
On the way to Blizar Prime, Rivet recalls Clank telling her on Sargasso that he repaired the Dimensionator so Ratchet could find the other Lombaxes. Rivet had also been estranged from her own kind her whole life and wishfully asks him if finding the Lombax's home was truly possible. Their conversation is shutdown however when they approach Blizar Prime and find that the planet has been shattered to pieces. They land their ship in the debris field, wondering aloud what could have happened and Clank worries that the Phase Quartz could not have survived. However they soon find a purple glowing Blizon crystal and Clank tells Rivet to strike it with her hammer. Upon doing so, they find themselves shifted into another dimension where the planet is still intact. Like Clank had theorized, the Blizon had absorbed and stored the energy from the dimensional rifts, allowing the two to use them to shift back and forth between Rivet's dimension and another unknown one. Clank discerns they can find intact Phase Quartz here and they should speak to a miner or engineer about using the site's main drill to excavate some. While shifting back and forth between Rivet's dimension and the intact one, the two meet a survivor in the ruins who angrily curses her predicament. Rivet informs her that there is another dimension where the planet is still intact and the stranger eagerly asks how she knows this but figures out that the Lombax had used the Blizon and hastily takes off. The Nefarious Troopers sent by Dr. Nefarious pass by and scour the planet's remains for Rivet and Clank. Soon after, the two start hearing gargled transmissions from the stranger, broadcasting a warning to anyone who will listen. Her messages are unclear so Clank suggests they look into it after they have first secured some Phase Quartz.
The crumbling barriers between dimensions had been causing seismic activity throughout the intact Blizar Prime forcing much of the mining site to undergo lockdowns for safety purposes. Rivet and Clank made their way around the lockdowned areas on their way to the main site. On the way there, more members of the Goons-4-Less emerged from dimensional rifts and had followed Rivet to fulfill their contract. The goons however have trouble differentiating their Lombax target between Rivet and Ratchet, so they attack them both. After defeating the goons' forces, they make their way to the main mining hub and take a lift to the Chief Engineer's Survey Station. Rivet asks the Engineer if they can drill for some Phase Quartz but she claims she has been hearing voices coming from the dimensional rifts and has sent her three Science Bots to discover what the disturbance is. The Engineer states she cannot authorize use of the drill until this has been investigated first. Rivet offers to speed up this process and goes to find the Science Bots B.O.B., J.I.M. and S.A.M. herself so they can report their findings. Once all three return to the Survey Station, the Engineer begins decoding the message they picked up from Rivet's dimension and authorizes use of the drill in the meantime. On the way back to the mining hub, a dimensional anomaly identical to the one on Sargasso, appears at the site's Hydraulic Pump and needs to be repaired before they can continue further. Clank enters the anomaly and meets Gary again, who again assists Clank with repairing it. Clank asks Gary about the book he always carries with him and he explains it is the most up-to-date collection of knowledge in the universe as catalogued by his father, whom Clank knows as the Plumber. The Plumber is currently taking his first ever vacation and has left Gary in charge. Gary asks how things are going with Rivet and Clank notes the differences between her and Ratchet, namely her wariness of robots which Ratchet never had. Clank realises that he has begun to trust Rivet and that she is starting to trust him too. Clank repairs the Anomaly, and receives some parting words of advice from Gary: confidence is the key to not getting caught up in the details.
After getting clearance to use the elevator, the two continue along a grindrail system and reach the drill. Once the drill is activated, the Chief Engineer calls and plays the message fom her counterpart in Rivet's dimension. The message from the stranger implores them to not turn on the drill. The rifts had damaged it and was the cause of her Blizar Prime being destroyed. The Engineer desperately attempts a remote shutdown but is unable to. The drill excavates some Phase Quartz that Rivet recovers but she quickly returns to the other dimension to save the planet. The Goons-4-Less continue trying to attack her but Rivet knocks one of their Dropships into the drill and successfully dislodges it's laser before it shatters the planet. In the chaos, Clank and the Phase Quartz fall into the dislodged laser's trajectory but Rivet chooses to narrowly save Clank while the Phase Quartz is broken to pieces. While the situation looks bad, Rivet picks up the shattered fragments and recalls to Clank stories the Morts had told her about an individual on Torren IV known as the Fixer, who is said to be capable of fixing anything. Rivet, understanding how bad the Morts are at lying, feels their highly spoken tales of The Fixer are worth looking into. Clank takes her word for it and the two head back to Rivet's dimension again and jump in their ship to take off to Torren IV. Just before they leave, another public broadcast from Dr. Nefarious plays, where he attempts to dispel panic that the dimension is in danger and discards them as lies. He also significantly increases the bounty he had previously placed on the Lombaxes.
In the announcement trailer, Ratchet and Clank are seen running through rifts that take them through several planets, including alternate reality versions of Sargasso, Torren IV, Ardolis, as well as a city named Megalopolis. The Goons-4-Less and a giant hologram of Dr. Nefarious are also seen, as well as Rivet, a female lombax. The scenes depicted in this trailer differ from those of the final game.
The PlayStation 5's increased horsepower allowed more enemies, effects, and objects to be loaded per world, as Insomniac intended for each planet to feel real and alive than was possible on previous generations. The Solid State Drive of the PlayStation 5 also allowed gameplay in which players could be projected to other worlds at near-instantaneous speed, creating the first Ratchet & Clank with no load screens between planets. The PlayStation 5 also allowed for 3D spatial audio, creating greater immersion.
On the 11 of February in 2021 the release date of June 11 in the same year was revealed on the PlayStation website blog. It also included information on the game's pre-orders for the Standard Edition and Digital Deluxe Edition. The former includes a graphically remastered version of the carbonox armor from Going Commando (for both Ratchet and the new lombax), as well as the Pixelizer (also visually improved) from Ratchet & Clank (2016 game). The Digital Deluxe edition contains, aside from the full game, five armor sets (presumably four plus the carbonox armor), a sticker pack for the new Photo Mode, 20 Raritanium used to upgrade weapons, and a digital soundtrack and artbook.
Most of the voice actors from previous games, such as James Arnold Taylor as Ratchet, David Kaye as Clank, and Armin Shimerman as Nefarious, reprise their roles in Rift Apart. The only longtime voice actor that did not reprise his role was Jim Ward, who voiced Qwark, as he developed complications of Alzheimer's Disease and COVID-19 in 2021, which forced him to retire from voice acting. His new voice actor is Scott Whyte.
|2||Festival of Heroes||3:54|
|3||A Most Nefarious City||4:06|
|4||Sweet Home Sargasso||4:08|
|5||Ride Through the Omniverse||2:16|
|6||Ode to Nefarious||1:58|
|7||Meet Me at Zurkie's||3:00|
|8||Urfdah Mesa Major||3:34|
|9||Blizar Prime'd and Ready||4:47|
|10||Molonoth Means Paradise||4:44|
|11||Cascading Entropic Fissure||4:02|
|12||A Tale of Two Cordelions||5:01|
|13||Glitch in the System||3:05|
|14||A Late Arrival||2:10|
|15||The Battle for Sargasso||1:49|
|16||Urfdah Mesa Minor||1:41|
|18||Zordoom and Gloom||4:03|
|19||Culmination at Corson V||5:36|
|20||Join Me at the Top||2:29|
|OpenCritic||89 (based on 96 reviews)|
|Metacritic||89 (based on 97 reviews)|
|Electronic Gaming Monthly||5/5|
Rift Apart received highly positive reviews. Critics praised the visuals, the introduction and writing of Rivet, and the refined gameplay mechanics. Most of the praise focused on the game as a strong showcase of PlayStation 5 hardware, as critics were most impressed by the SSD's fast loading between levels, the DualSense making weapons feel different, and the graphical fidelity and high performance the hardware provided. As an adventure in its own right, it was commended for its heartfelt and humorous story, the weapons, and the traversal mechanics, though some critics noted that some of the side missions were poorer than core gameplay. Rachel Weber, writing for GamesRadar+, called it the "best Ratchet and Clank adventure yet".
Rift Apart was noted for taking advantage of the PlayStation 5 hardware. Andrew Reiner, writing for Game Informer, praised the graphics at both its Fidelity and Performance RT modes (while recommending Performance RT), calling the game a "visual dynamo that lights up the screen with cluttered sci-fi cityscapes, colorful aliens, and intricately detailed texturing". Weber, of GamesRadar+ agreed, saying the game deserves the "like a Pixar movie" comparison, and looks pristine even with a high-speed pace. Weber also mentioned finding collectibles by accident after wandering around to take in more of the scenery. Praise also went towards the use of the SSD for fast loading. Steve Watts, writing for GameSpot, said the lack of load times made the game feel "feel cinematic and harmonious in a natural, unselfconscious way". He also said the DualSense controller made a significant difference in how the weapons felt, helping the functionality feel "more impactful than a mere gimmick". Weber also said the use of the DualSense in Rift Apart was "a great exhibit A in my campaign to convince the world" of the controller's merits.
The story also received a positive reaction, with many comments focused on Rivet's character. Jonathon Dornbush, writing for IGN, said Rivet's distinctive personality made her feel like more than a gender-swap of Ratchet, calling her one of Insomniac's best-written characters and praising Jennifer Hale's performance. Dornbush said that she, and other new characters, were so indelible they it was "hard to imagine the series without them", but also said the old characters felt fresh. Watts of GameSpot agreed, highlighting voice actress Jennifer Hale's portrayal of self-doubt and loneliness while maintaining her "heroic determination", and called Rivet the real star of the game and a "fantastic addition to the larger Ratchet & Clank universe". Weber more broadly said that Rift Apart had evolved the series' storytelling, and said it was the first game in the series she had engaged with emotionally.
Reaction to the core gameplay was positive. Most critics highlighting the Topiary Sprinkler as a standout weapon, and praise also went to the traversal mechanics. Watts of GameSpot praised the newly introduced Phantom Dash and Rift Tether for combining well with Ratchet & Clank mainstays to allow for "breathless, harrowing setpieces" in platforming segments, and for being fun to use during combat. Goroff of EGM also praised the use of the Hoverboots, saying that their smoothness and ease of use made other ground-level traversal systems in gaming feel "pedestrian" by comparison.
Critics were more divided on the game's secondary gameplay, with Clank and Glitch's missions receiving a positive reaction while the mount riding sections were criticized. Dornbush of IGN felt that moments spent riding mounts were the only times the game lost momentum. Conversely, he felt that the Clank puzzles were successful in making the player feel clever while not being too challenging, and said that Glitch's segments were fun due to Glitch's personality. Watts of GameStop agreed, saying that riding Trudi felt "sluggish and temperamental" in comparison to Ratchet and Rivet while noting these segments were short enough to not detract too much from the overall experience, and praised the puzzle gameplay of Clank and Glitch.
|Ratchet||James Arnold Taylor|
|Dr. Nefarious||Armin Shimerman|
|Emperor Nefarious||Robin Atkin Downes|
|Captain Qwark||Scott Whyte|
|Captain Quantum||Zeke Alton|
|Skidd McMarx/Phantom||Jess Harnell|
|Ms. Zurkon||Courtenay Taylor|
|Mrs. Zurkon/Ms. Fungal||Ali Hillis|
|Mr. Fungi||Josh Dean|
|Mysterious Stranger/Chief Engineer||Fryda Wolff|
|Emperor's Assistant||Kimberly Brooks|
|Junk Bot||JP Karliak|
|The Fixer||William Salyers|
|Zurkon Jr.||Richard Horvitz|
|Nefarious Troopers||Zeke Alton
|Robot Pirates||Shaun Conde
|Additional Voices||Ali Hillis
James Arnold Taylor
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