Ratchet & Clank have been stamped on Sony consoles since the Playstation 2. The pair emerged in 2002 and became the brand’s mascot, captivating adults and children with platform and action games that focus on good humor, charismatic characters and gambling hot without compromises.
Almost twenty years have passed and the heroes are back, now with a special mission, both in the game and in real life. While in the game, they must finally stop the evil plans of Dr. Nefarious, in real life the new title in the series has the mission to show even more the power of the PS5’s ultra-fast SSD and other features that the console can offer.
How is the game? Worth to buy? Is the game as cool as the trailers showed? The answers to these and other questions you will know now.
Also check out our video review:
A little of history
Contrary to what many may think, “Rift Apart”, or “Em Uma Outra Dimensão” which is the official title in Brazilian Portuguese, is not a continuation of the 2016 game’s Remake, but rather the duo’s adventures in Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus, released for Playstation 3 in 2013.
To situate everyone, I’ll tell you a little about the game’s context. Ratchet is a skilled mechanic from the Lombax race who dreamed of being a hero and meeting other beings of his race, since he was the last. He saw an opportunity by joining a group of heroes known as the Galactic Rangers and during that journey he met the little robot Clank.
A lot of time and many adventures passed and now, the two are in a gigantic parade to celebrate theirs. In the end, Clank hopes to present his longtime partner with a device called the Dimensioner. This machine will allow Ratchet to travel through the dimensions to finally find other Lombaxes. However, Dr. Nefarious breaks into the party, steals the Sizer and causes a fuzz of spacetime. Now, the pair must follow the villain through the dimensions and stop him.
The beautiful universe of Ratchet & Clank
As soon as the adventure begins, we are surprised by the beautiful setting. Important here, this analysis was done in the LOYALTY mode, which prioritizes the look of the game that is a show. This is the only mode available before the Day 1 update, in which Performance and Performance RT will be added.
In Fidelity mode we have a 4K resolution running at 30 FPS and with all the graphics features activated, such as ray tracing, enhanced lighting and additional visual effects.
You can see every little hair on Ratchet’s face, the reflection of light on Clank’s metal, but the highlight is the setting full of NPCs, extremely colorful and with lots of particles on the screen, from confetti being thrown by the crowd to the pieces of boxes that we break to collect the screws, which is the “money” of the game.
What makes us want to use photo mode almost all the time, by the way, this mode is as complete as the Spiderman game, even offering light point creation.
Ray Tracing is almost flawless, this is for sure the best demonstration of this technology on the PS5, with reflections of light rays that mirror everything around and global lighting, which creates a very realistic environment, bouncing different light sources on the scene and even object colors, bringing a physical simulation, In Ratchet & Clank 2016, the setting was already quite beautiful, but the leap taken when compared here is jaw-dropping.
But why did I say “almost” flawless? Well, if I want to be very cri cri, you can say that some dynamic objects, such as suitcases on the first planet, have a “simpler reflection, if we look closely, we realize that only the silhouettes of these objects are reflected, while static objects in the scenery , how the plants are reflected with their colors. But, as I said, it’s a very specific thing that just seeing the game frame by frame is really remarkable.
In short, graphically Ratchet & Clank is an extremely beautiful game that pays attention to details, whether you’re in a city environment, full of lights and neon, or when you’re on a wilder and more swampy planet.
However, as technology advances, worlds become much more structured and beautiful, we have SSDs, we have ray tracing, we have a lot of things… We still haven’t got rid of the damn invisible walls. Yeah, it pisses me off a little bit.
An incredible arsenal
Continuing with the franchise’s gaming tradition, in another dimension it also offers a really cool arsenal with 20 weapons that are very different from each other. Snipers, turrets, grenade launchers, machine guns and space shotguns are all part of this pack.
Each of these weapons has its own system of evolution with levels, initially reaching level 5, which modifies not only its power but also its name and appearance. After finishing the game once, the Omega version of the arsenal is released, which allows you to evolve up to level 10.
Using an ore called raritanium, the player can fortify each weapon in whatever way they see fit. If you prefer firepower, just buy the damage nodes, if you want to shoot faster, just stick to the nodes that offer more rate of fire.
Of course, at some point it’s possible to fully level weapons, but choosing the priority of what to level is entirely yours.
As said before, this is already standard in the franchise, however here, because of Dualsense, we have news. Each weapon offers a different feel in control, those with a shotgun style, for example, make the peripheral vibrate much stronger than the others when firing.
Weapons that need to charge the shot, such as the Negatronic Collider, start with a very light vibration intensity until they fully charge and release the blast. It may sound silly describing it, but it brings a really cool immersion to the game.
Adaptive triggers also get the spotlight here. Some weapons have different types of shots, using the Burst Pistol as an example, pressing the R2 only halfway gives it cadenced shots, with long intervals between one and another and very accurate. By sinking your finger into the button, the pistol fires much faster, but with a decrease in accuracy.
This is just one example, different weapons react differently to Dualsense’s adaptive triggers.
a new protagonist
Ratchet & Clank: In Another Dimension brings another novelty: a new protagonist, the lombax Rivet, who would be the dimensional counterpart of Ratchet. She is very similar to him, not only in appearance, but also in her determined and adventurous way.
The game is practically 50-50, in some worlds the player controls Ratchet, while in others it controls Rivet, who share the same arsenal, so when you evolve weapons with one, the other will also have access.
She is a rebel leader who struggles to free her dimension from the terrible Emperor Nefarious, Dr. Nefarious’s counterpart. So, she is super respected by members of the resistance despite hiding several insecurities.
Rivet has a nice evolution during the game, we can say that she was a great addition to the franchise and I hope to see her in future games.
Her presence in the game is so natural that at times the player won’t even notice if he’s playing with her or with Ratchet. However, this may be her biggest problem: the girl could have been a little better worked, besides the few physical differences between her and Ratchet, the gameplays of the two are almost identical.
crossing the dimensions
Now, let’s talk about one of the most important aspects of the game: the dimensional cracks. The game’s greatest asset during Playstation’s marketing campaigns was the possibility of traversing space-time using a type of grappling hook.
When watching trailers and videos of the game, it seems that it is a system that will be happening all the time, that at any time during the game one of these ruptures will appear and take you to another dimension, in a completely different place and from there you will continue to phase until another break appears and so on…
Well, that’s kind of it, but in a simpler way than the game trailers and videos make it sound. In phases there are two types of ruptures:
Yellow: They get you from one point to another instantly, almost like a teleport.
Purples: These are much more interesting, they transport you to a completely different dimension where the protagonist must fulfill a challenge to gain a piece of armor.
This is VERY reminiscent of bonus stages in Crash games, the ones where you step onto a platform with a question mark and go to a different area.
What’s cool here is that it happens instantly, without the need for a loading screen, one moment you’re in one dimension and the next you’re in another with a completely different structure.
There are some phases, or chase moments, where you use these purple breaks to traverse multiple worlds at once. However, they are scripted scenes. It’s still amazing, but it doesn’t mean that out of nowhere in a stage, you’ll find one of these cracks and you’ll be on another planet that can be explored, that’s not how it works.
There are two planets that allow the player to switch between two dimensions using purple crystals, one of them is Blizar Prime. While in one dimension it is a planet that has a huge mining factory, in another it is completely destroyed and abandoned. The transition between one world and another is a snap, just tap the crystal.
But this kind of transition, despite being incredibly fast and transforming the entire planet, is not unheard of. If it were done the same way as the purple break, then it would be more impressive. Don’t get me wrong, I still think it’s awesome and the game really shows the power of the Playstation 5 SSD, but I was hoping for something more impactful when I watched the game trailers.
Dubbing in Ratchet & Clank is nothing new, the 2016 remake has been fully localized. But being a little boring here, Clank’s voice in English is much more flashy and iconic, not that the dubbing work in Portuguese was bad, but the voice of the little robot in English, along with his metallic laugh, marked me in the times of PS2 and PS3, I thought I would get used to it after the 2016 game, but I was wrong.
I also think Ratchet’s voice doesn’t suit him that much, but that’s not even remotely a problem. However, the voices of Rivet and Captain Quark in Brazilian Portuguese are even better than the originals in English. In the PS4 game, the captain’s voice had already put on a show, with very funny intonations.
In Another Dimension, like other games in the Ratchet & Clank franchise, it is a game for those who enjoy that casual game, when you just want to relax your mind and have fun with a humorous work. It’s the same feeling as watching a sitcom after spending hours watching a head movie. This is by no means a bad thing.
Although minigames are too easy, they are fun. To give some examples: in one, the player takes control of a nanorobot called Glitch that needs to deal with viruses inside some machines and in another Clank needs to make his, “dimensional probabilities” come to a door using some artifice across the scene.
There’s also an arena you can visit to win prizes by winning some challenges, like defeating more powerful bosses or hordes of enemies, something that’s not new to the franchise either.
Between the constant evolution of the arsenal, coming and going on planets to pick up collectibles (like the well-known golden screws) and acquiring more money and raritanium to improve the arsenal, I finished the game in 15 hours. Which is a very interesting time, considering that there is still a New Game+ that increases the game’s difficulty and allows the purchase and evolution of Omega weapons, but that doesn’t have any difference in the story.
Ratchet & Clank: In Another Dimension it’s amazing, a really fun game for all ages. As much as it has this colorful game face aimed at children, anyone will have fun playing. It’s the kind of game that should come with the Playstation 5 to show even more power in the next generation. This game together with the Remake of Demon’s Souls and Spider-Man: Miles Morales were the first steps.
It has fast transitions from one world to another, no loading screen, there’s that disguised cutscene loading but it’s also extremely fast and made in a way that makes a lot of sense with what happens in the gameplay.
Sensational graphics quality with a very well-made use of technologies such as Ray Tracing, Global Illumination and more. It is a game that is very exciting for what will come later in this generation.
However, despite the insertion of a new character, who has played other games in the Ratchet & Clank franchise, will not find many evolutions in gameplay. As fun as it is, it’s even more of the same if we take into account boss fights, fights against hordes of enemies and exploring the scenarios. I’m not saying there aren’t new things, we can use armor customization as an example. But the addition of Rivet could give a different style of play, even though she is Ratchet’s dimensional counterpart, the girl could have different abilities, but the differences between them are only in gender, color and in the fact that Rivet uses a sledgehammer as gun and not a wrench like Ratchet. What I mean is: It’s a great character, but she could have been put to better use.
The game still has some rough edges to fix, like the reflection of dynamic objects, boring invisible walls and hitboxes that don’t make sense. But none of this takes away the shine of this game that opens many doors for the next PS5 exclusives.