Ratchet and Clank are back, and this time they need to save reality itself from falling apart. Poised to be the first major PlayStation 5 exclusive of the year, while boasting some flashy visuals, Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart's main intrigue surrounds dimensional shifting, which utilizes the console's super-fast SSD to move the player seamlessly between worlds.
The upcoming third-person shooter platform adventure will feature enhanced lighting, ray tracing and a targeted 60 frames per second performance mode, as our galactic duo planet-hop to defeat the evil Dr. Nefarious. The new Insomniac-developed title will arrive on June 11, 2021, picking up the story from 2013's Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus.
A new female Lombax will also be playable, alongside a huge arsenal of weapons, including the Burst Pistol, Topiary Sprinkler and the Shatterbomb. Most importantly, the Rift Tether can pull Ratchet and Clank through anomalies to move around the world.
To find out more, here's everything we know so far about Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart.
- Best new games 2021: game release dates for console and PC
- Best PS5 games: don't miss these titles
- PS5 vs PS5 Digital Edition: what's the difference?
Cut to the chase
- What is it? A new Ratchet & Clank game, and sequel to 2013's Into the Nexus on PS3
- When can I play it? June 11, 2021
- What can I play it on? PlayStation 5
Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart release date
Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart will release on June 11, 2021, as a PlayStation 5 exclusive.
The game was first revealed during the PlayStation 5 showcase on June 11, 2020 (an exact year before it's due to release). This is the 12th game to date in the series, with the original debuting on the PS2 at the tail end of 2002. It's also the longest gap in the franchise's release history at five years.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart trailers
Premiered at the PlayStation 5 showcase, the announcement trailer takes us to a prehistoric planet (possibly Sargasso), until Ratchet and Clank suddenly break through a dimensional rift. Clank notes that the "dimensions are collapsing on one another," before a horde of robots follows who start firing on the pair.
Ratchet pilots an Anthropod to safety, only to be thrown through various different dimensions - resembling Megalopolis and Torren IV - ending at Ardolis where the Lombax takes on a group of pirates already fighting a kraken. There's also another planet in the rift-jumping sequence where Ratchet rides a dragon at night through traffic – however, this does not seem to resemble any recognizable planets previously seen in the series.
The trailer ends as Clank is separated from Ratchet during an explosion on the pirate ship, resulting in the little robot falling through a rift, only to be welcomed by a female Lombax on a planet ruled by Dr. Nefarious.
We saw a glimpse of gameplay footage following the announcement trailer, but this was then expanded on in a seven-minute extended gameplay demo at Gamescom's Opening Night Live on August 27, 2020, which we will focus on here.
The extended gameplay demo began with a cutscene as Ratchet and Clank return to Megalopolis, noting that they still have time to stop Dr. Nefarious. A squad of Goon-4-Less attack, leading into the actual gameplay. The fuzzy-eared Lombax and his robot sidekick make their way through the city, disposing of enemies via a selection of new weapons and the former's trusted OmniWrench.
Eventually encountering Dr. Nefarious, Ratchet damages the former's "Dimensionator" causing numerous rifts to materialize, which consequently transports creatures from other worlds into theirs. Ratchet and Clank pursue Nefarious until a rift appears and pushes them through the same dimension hopping sequence shown in the announcement trailer.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart news and rumors
Right now, the big mystery in Rift Apart surrounds who is the female Lombax that leaps into frame at the end of the announcement trailer. This is only the second appearance of a female Lombax in the series - Angela Cross previously appeared in 2003's Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando on the PlayStation 2. It was then established in-game that only male Lombax possess tails, with many now questioning if this new female Lombax is actually from the same species or from an alternative universe.
On June 16, 2020, Insomniac Games confirmed that the female Lombax will be playable alongside the titular heroes.
Play as Ratchet AND a mysterious new female Lombax from another dimension. #RatchetPS5 #RiftApart pic.twitter.com/aMDSAB77iGJune 16, 2020
Where in the timeline does Rift Apart take place?
Interestingly, Rift Apart is not a sequel to the 2016 reboot. Instead, the game was confirmed at Gamescom Opening Night Live 2020 to follow on from Ratchet and Clank: Into the Nexus, which launched on the PlayStation 3 back in 2013.
"Canonically this is an extension of Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus - the 2013 game - but it's a standalone adventure," Insomniac’s creative director Marcus Smith explained.
"So, it's one that even if you've never played a Ratchet and Clank game, you can get into it and you'll understand it and you'll enjoy it. For hardcore fans, we have a lot of nods... you are going to see a lot of returning characters and planets, and see them all through a whole new light of 'multiple-dimensionality'".