Ratchet and his robotic buddy Clank have returned in Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart. Of course, Insomniac’s newest release is far from the duo’s only adventure. Players interested in picking up Rift Apart may be wondering if they need to play past games to understand the story. Fortunately, understanding the Ratchet and Clank timeline is as easy as looking at each game in order.
Ratchet & Clank Timeline | All Games in Order
The Ratchet and Clank timeline follows a linear path from the first release all the way through Rift Apart. The only oddball in the timeline is Ratchet and Clank 2016, which serves as a reimagining of the PS2 original.
Put simply, the Ratchet and Clank timeline follows all games in order. The story begins with the very first release and continues all the way through Rift Apart. As such, you can follow the overall story by playing each game in order of release:
- Ratchet & Clank (2002)
- Ratchet & Clank 2: Going Commando (2003)
- Ratchet & Clank 3: Up Your Arsenal (2004)
- Ratchet: Deadlocked (2005)
- Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters (2007)
- Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction (2007)
- Secret Agent Clank (2007)
- Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty (2008)
- Ratchet & Clank: A Crack in Time (2009)
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One (2011)
- Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault (2012)
- Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus (2013)
- Ratchet & Clank (2016)*
- Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart (2021)
It’s worth mentioning that the Ratchet and Clank timeline canonically also includes the self-titled DC Comics series. Assuming you want to experience the full story in order, the comic series takes place after A Crack in Time.
There is one catch to this list, and it involves Ratchet and Clank for the PS4. The 2016 release is a “reimagining” of the 2002 release with a few mostly minor changes. Both games follow the same story, but the 2016 remake does give players an early introduction to Dr. Nefarious, who otherwise first appears in Up Your Arsenal.
If you want to follow the entire Ratchet and Clank timeline, simply play each of the games in order of release. However, if you just want to catch up on the story for Rift Apart, you can save time by playing the 2016 remake followed by Into the Nexus.