2021’s first big PlayStation 5 exclusive is nearly here.
Returnal, the new game from Resogun, Nex Machina and Alienation developer Housemarque, arrives tomorrow on PS5. Returnal is not only PS5’s first big exclusive this year, it also represents a bold new direction for its maker.
Housemarque has left the top-down perspective behind to bring its bullet hell gameplay, tight controls, particle effects overload and spectacle to third-person. Returnal represents a new adventure for the studio, one that also experiments with telling a proper story in-between and through runs of this rogue-like.
In Returnal, you play as space pilot Selene, whose ship crashes on an alien planet. With every death, she’s forced to relive those moments, only to witness a different variation of the same planet, with a new arrangement of rooms, new enemy variants and new buffs/debuffs to obtain.
In that sense, Returnal works as a traditional rogue-like: you start each run hoping to get good weapons and buffs as you make your way through the game’s six locations. Die and you lose all that, except for one currency that carries over between runs. All the while, you’ll come across audio logs and snippets of story that help you make sense of what’s happening, as well more directed narrative sequences.
If you’re intrigued by any of this, check out our round-up of reviews below to see what the critics are saying.
- The VG247 review – Housemarque’s exclusive is all about Control 4/5
- IGN – 8
- Gamespot – 9
- Game Informer – 9.5
- GamesRadar+ – 4/5
- EGM – 4/5
- Press Start – 9
- VideoGamer – 9
- Post Arcade – 7.5
- Paste – 6
- Destructoid – 7.5
- Easy Allies [Video] – 8.5
- Gameblog [French] – 9
- Spaziogames [Italian] – 8
Returnal launches tomorrow, April 30 on PS5.