It’s not often that a video game series runs for (almost) 20 years, but you can be sure that if it does it has built a veritable mountain of fans along the way. Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is the newest in the beloved series, which saw its first entry back in 2002, and this installments’ flashy “next-gen” graphics and style may catch your kids’ eyes.
But what if you don’t know anything about Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment? Well, ESRB is here to outline what parents need to know so you can make sure it’s appropriate for your family.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is a single player, third person (meaning the camera is behind the character’s back) action platformer/shooter. For the uninitiated, this basically means that the gameplay involves a lot of running, jumping, exploring, and shooting!
Rift Apart’s visuals can best be described as a playable Pixar movie.
You and your kids will be dropped into the boots of Ratchet and series newcomer, Rivet, as they try to repair an inter-dimensional disaster set in motion by one of the series’ long-time villains, Dr. Nefarious. With the help of the eponymous Clank, some familiar faces, and new allies, Ratchet and Rivet will need to travel across multiple planets and dimensions to prevent the destruction of the known universe.
Saving the universe has never been so fun, colorful, and visually captivating. Insomniac has iterated on the tried-and-true gameplay of Ratchet & Clank while upping the ante to incorporate elements that solidify its status as a “next generation” video game. One aspect of this is Rift Apart’s visuals, which can best be described as a playable Pixar movie; accompanied by charming voice acting and relatable storytelling. The gameplay is also refined, expanding upon the tentpole mechanics of the Ratchet & Clank series with more varied movement (including a “rift tether” mechanic that allows players to traverse great distances in a blink), larger and more explorable areas, and frenetic combat (see below for what “combat” looks like in this game).
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is only available on the PlayStation 5, and while there is no multiplayer mode, the single player experience has multiple difficulties and dozens of collectibles that encourage replaying the game over and over. Even though only one person can play at a time, nothing is stopping you from sitting down with your kids and experiencing the game as a team!
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is rated E10+ (Everyone 10+) with Content Descriptors including Alcohol Reference, Animated Blood, and Fantasy Violence. It also includes the Interactive Element for In-Game Purchases, which in this case refers to the ability to upgrade to the “Deluxe Edition” edition with an additional purchase.
Many of the weapons are highly stylized and rather than simply shoot, have cartoony and entertaining effects.
ESRB’s rating summary of Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart goes into more detail, explaining that “players use over-sized blasters/ranged weapons, defeating enemies with fiery explosions, lightning, plasma blasts, and other effects (e.g., ice, fire). Players can also use a wrench for melee attacks at close range.”
Many of these weapons are highly stylized and rather than simply shoot, have cartoony and entertaining effects. While the Burst Pistol is a more straightforward laser gun, players can also use inventive weapons like the Topiary Sprinkler, which turns enemies into hedge-art (think Edward Scissorhands), and the Cold Snap, which freezes enemies in place as you continue to wreak havoc. Ratchet & Clank typically has a varied and innovative arsenal of silly weapons, and Rift Apart promises to continue the tradition.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart for the PlayStation 5 is available at various video game retailers for $69.99.
As mentioned, ESRB assigned the In-Game Purchases Interactive Element to highlight the players’ ability to purchase an upgrade to a “Deluxe Edition” which has additional content via the PlayStation Store for approximately $10.00. Beyond that, there are currently no additional offers to purchase digital goods for this game.
Don’t forget to visit ESRB’s step-by-step parental control guides at ParentalTools.org to help you manage what your kids play, with whom, for how long, and how much money they can spend (if any!).