Aside from a beloved series of games, Ratchet & Clank has spawned manga, comics, books, toys, and even a feature movie. One thing it hasn’t produced is a television series, which is why the sudden and quiet appearance of a 23 minute TV short, Ratchet & Clank: Life of Pie, has confused many people. Available on Canada’s TV and movie service Crave, it turns out the short is a prequel to upcoming PS5 game Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart as a PlayStation Original. Ratchet & Clank: Life of Pie requires a Crave subscription to watch, and is as yet unavailable to view elsewhere. It’s unclear if the short will receive a wider release beyond those who have a subscription to Crave.
Life of Pie tells how the duo discovers Dr. Nefarious’ Portalizer while running an errand to get some pizza. To prevent him from taking over the multiverse, the pair decide to steal the interdimensional portal device from its inventor and lock it up in a weapons museum where it will be safe. They’re interrupted by Captain Qwark, who uses the weapon to create a sentient pizza-topping horde that invades Galactic City. Now Ratchet and Clank have to defeat the mob while preventing anybody from using the weapon to cause more harm.
The short is directed by Mike Alcock and Craig George of Mainframe Studios, known for their work on Spy Kids: Mission Critical. George has confirmed Life of Pie is a one-off special that serves as a prequel to Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, which is due to be released in June. As such, the actors used to voice the characters in the game are all present here too, including James Arnold Taylor as Ratchet, David Kaye as Clank, Armin Shimerman as Dr. Nefarious, and Jim Ward as Captain Qwark.
Rift Apart is a standalone story that won’t need players to have seen the prequel short, nor played any of the other games in the franchise. Those who do play the game with prior experience of the franchise will recognise familiar environments as well as “deeper connections” to previous titles. Rift Apart will be released on June 11 while Life of Pie is available now for subscribers of Crave. We’ll let you know if the short receives wider distribution in the future.