¡¡¡¡Ratchet and Clank is the new poster child of next generation gaming.Rift Apart has been billed as the first true showcase of the PlayStation 5 from the moment it was revealed.Demon’s Souls is a remake, Returnal wasn’t developed in-house and Spider-Man Miles Morales – like the upcoming Horizon: Forbidden West – can run on last generation’s PlayStation 4 even if it isn’t as pretty.READ MORE: Gameplay and details revealed for long-awaited PlayStation titleAnimation levels are similar to a modern Pixar film. (YouTube)Free of those concerns, Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart expectations were high for the old-school PS2 mascot and Insomniac Games don’t disappoint.Animation is at Pixar levels of quality with fidelity you’d expect from a modern film.Best of all, it runs smooth as butter no matter which graphical option you choose.The same fidelity, performance and performance RT (ray-tracing) modes from Miles Morales return in Rift Apart, however the sacrifices were much more noticeable in Ratchet and Clank over the first few hours of my playthrough.Performance RT was my go to in both Spider-Man games, but the drop in resolution Ratchet needs to achieve 60 frames per second was too noticeable on my 4K TV.I’m not normally a stickler for resolution but Ratchet’s fur looked so obviously pixelated to me that I changed the setting to fidelity mode 30 seconds into the first cutscene and have never looked back.READ MORE: You could lose your licence due to double demerits this weekend and not know itThe new game is the sixteenth instalment in the Ratchet & Clank series. (YouTube)Here, Rift Apart truly shines. The detail in character models, reflections, levels and the creatures who inhabit them is mind boggling. Sure, it’s no open-world but the scale and density of the levels is a sight to behold.Thanks to Ratchet (and Rivet’s) slower movement compared to Spider-Man, plus their cartoony design, I never noticed or cared about the 30 frames-per-second limit. The game is rock solid, as are its much talked about loading times.Swapping between dimensions and into entirely different landscapes is a phenomenal showcase of the PS5’s new SSD. It truly is flawless and Insomniac has ironed out any dip in performance from the demos for perfect continuity.Dimension hopping in combat to get a new angle and the jump on your enemies is a great new mechanic, albeit a little discombobulating. The gimmick truly shines in traversal however some may be disappointed at how scripted these moments feel in practice. There’s very little player agency to choose alternate dimensional paths.READ MORE: ‘Violent extremists’: Neutral host to deploy troops for Biden-Putin summitThe game went on sale on June 11. (YouTube)Same goes for the Ratchet v Rivet split. You’re playing two separate characters, on separate but intertwined adventures yet they control identically and inexplicably share the exact same weapons and upgrades.We’re too early in our playthrough to comment on the story, but Insomniac’s ability to realise characters through dialogue and animation endears you to the main cast instantly.It’s by no means perfect, but Ratchet and Clank Rift Apart will and should be near the top of most people’s wish list looking to buy a PS5.
¡¡¡¡PlayStation¡¯s competition goes far beyond its gaming rivals, Sony¡¯s head of PlayStation Jim Ryan told Axios.
¡¡¡¡Why it matters: With entertainment converging on every screen imaginable, old distinctions between the business of games, movies, streaming and even social media are becoming less relevant.
¡¡¡¡¡°We are an entertainment company with a community of more than 100 million gamers with really extraordinary levels of commitment and engagement,¡° Ryan told Axios when asked how he defines PlayStation and its competition.¡°I would say unequivocally that we are competing for leisure hours, and that any definition of competition has to extend way beyond the boundaries of what has traditionally been defined as gaming,¡± he said.
¡¡¡¡The big picture: Sony supplemented its splashy and largely successful November launch of the PS5 with news this spring that it plans to expand its key franchises into at least 10 new movies and shows.
¡¡¡¡It has an HBO series in the works about hit PS4 game “The Last Of Us,” a movie in development about PS4 game “Ghost of Tsushima,” and more.
¡¡¡¡Sony¡¯s PS5 console is off to a hot start in its first seven months, but market leaders in previous video game console generations have struggled or outright failed in subsequent ones, something Sony is doing its best to avoid.
¡¡¡¡Sony is learning from one one of the PS4¡¯s few shortcomings, a lack of hot games early. ¡°Yes, the output during the PS4 cycle was excellent,¡± Ryan said, referring to a slew of critically acclaimed blockbuster games that were exclusive to Sony¡¯s previous console, ¡°but the great majority of those games came in the second half of the cycle.¡±? Sony ramped up game production early for PS5, with multiple exclusive games at launch followed by April¡¯s ¡°Returnal¡± and June¡¯s ¡°Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart.¡±
¡¡¡¡Sony¡¯s biggest PlayStation challenge doesn¡¯t seem to be making games for the PS5, but getting consoles to customers.
¡¡¡¡The company says it shipped a record 7.8 million PS5s by the end of March, but demand is high, production is squeezed by chip shortages and consoles are tough to find.¡°This really frustrates me and upsets me, especially when resellers and bots manage to get their hands on stock,¡± Ryan said.Sony is ¡°working incredibly hard¡± with retail partners to get PS5s into ¡°the right hands,¡± he said, and pointed to Sony¡¯s own distribution service, ¡°PlayStation Direct¡± as a way to help that along. That U.S. program will expand to Europe before the end of March 2022.
¡¡¡¡Sony is also targeting an expansion to mobile, as it joins other console gaming powerhouses in craving the bigger mobile market. It will have something to show there soon, Ryan teased.
¡¡¡¡¡°The thinking here is that our IP portfolio is in such a strong state right now, it seems perverse to restrict enjoyment of it to our existing PlayStation community,¡± Ryan said. Sony listed an opening for a head of PlayStation Mobile earlier this year. Asked about the state of that role and whether Sony would focus on studio acquisition or developing expertise in-house to make mobile games, Ryan said: ¡°We are working on a number of models to open up mobile. You¡¯ll see the first fruits of this sooner than you might think.¡±
¡¡¡¡PlayStation made news last December for a game it decided to not sell. In December, it delisted the highly anticipated but surprisingly buggy third-party game ¡°Cyberpunk 2077.¡±
¡¡¡¡¡°This was a tough decision for us to make, but ultimately, we had to act in the interests of the PlayStation Community, and not knowingly sell a game that might result in a bad experience for them,” Ryan said. Sales of the game have suffered, its studio, CD Projekt, has said. The studio is in ongoing discussion with Sony to bring it back.Ryan offered no details about what it¡¯ll take for the game to return.
¡¡¡¡What¡¯s next: After ¡°Ratchet & Clank,¡± the PS5¡¯s future is a little less clear, but PlayStation overall is set to greatly expand.
¡¡¡¡Sony¡¯s next, big promoted game, ¡°Horizon Forbidden West¡± is officially a maybe for a 2021 release.Of those multiple TV and video projects the first big one is likely to be an ¡°Uncharted¡± movie, slated for release next February.
¡¡¡¡Go deeper: “Why would anybody play this?”: PlayStation boss’ most notorious quote
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