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Returnal (30 April 2021) - Information Thread, update: reviews from OpenCritic posted


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After reading all the previews I would be extremely pumped for this game if I owned a ps5. Difficulty may be harsh but it's seems like it's so fun and rewarding. 

 

I hope all that get it have fun regardless if they struggle with it. 

 

You can even do what vic said: :p

 

23 hours ago, Mr.Vic20 said:

I just want to stand in a game world and take it all in. And If I can’t beat it, at least I’ll give it my best and enjoy the ride while I’m there! 

 

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4 hours ago, ShreddieMercuryRising said:

Looks incredible.  Very much like a 3D Nex Machina.  The movement and shooting also looks sort of reminiscent of Control.

The dash animation and everything actually looks a lot like Nex Machina to me as well, just translated to 3D TPS. Immediately thought that as well, it's instantly recognizable.

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3 minutes ago, Commissar SFLUFAN said:

Review embargo just lifted - I'll post the OpenCritic compilation when I get the chance.

 

For some reason, I thought it was lifting tomorrow.

 

EDIT: Hey, are you sure it lifted? I think it's actually Thursday at 8am ET.

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9 minutes ago, SaysWho? said:

 

For some reason, I thought it was lifting tomorrow.

 

EDIT: Hey, are you sure it lifted? I think it's actually Thursday at 8am ET.


Whoops! You’re absolutely correct - it is tomorrow!  I thought today was the 29th.  In any case, Fextralife accidentally posted theirs early before taking it down - the score was 9/10.

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3 minutes ago, Commissar SFLUFAN said:


Whoops! You’re absolutely correct - it is tomorrow!  I thought today was the 29th.  In any case, Fextralife accidentally posted theirs early before taking it down - the score was 9/10.

 

:fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap::fap:

 

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15 minutes ago, Commissar SFLUFAN said:


Whoops! You’re absolutely correct - it is tomorrow!  I thought today was the 29th.  In any case, Fextralife accidentally posted theirs early before taking it down - the score was 9/10.

 

https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:QWbCg2DeWZkJ:https://fextralife.com/returnal-review-impressions-phenomenal-cosmic-fun/+&cd=1&hl=it&ct=clnk&gl=it&client=firefox-b-d

 

9.3
SUMMARY:
A sleeper hit, Returnal is bound to captivate you from start to finish, no pun intended. If you are a fan of good Sci-fi in the vein of The Expanse, Stranger Things, or Mass Effect, you surely won't want to miss this game. Returnal is the early front runner for Game of the Year 2021, making a compelling case to get a Playstation 5...if you can find one.

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If you're worried about roguelikes or it being too hard (that means you @stepee and @best3444), here's this reviewer's impression (no story spoilers or gameplay spoilers or anything like that):

 

Quote

Returnal was neither a game I was looking forward to, or knew too much about before playing this past week. I’m generally not a fan of rogue-like games, but Returnal has changed my perspective completely. And, while I enjoyed Hades immensely “for a rogue-like game”, I simply enjoyed Returnal. Full Stop.

 

Quote

Returnal is proof that superb writing can still be achieved while incorporating fun, challenging gameplay, and raises the bar for future titles, particularly on Playstation 5

 

 

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49 minutes ago, Commissar SFLUFAN said:


Whoops! You’re absolutely correct - it is tomorrow!  I thought today was the 29th.  In any case, Fextralife accidentally posted theirs early before taking it down - the score was 9/10.

 

Another leak. This review is more spoilery, so I'm copying the non-spoilers:

 

returnal-logo.jpg
WEBCACHE.GOOGLEUSERCONTENT.COM

Housemarque has succeeded with their fusion of third-person shooting and roguelike elements in Returnal, one of my favorite PS5 titles so far

 

Quote

Over the past week, all I can think about is Returnal and how much Housemarque has delivered on their promises to create something exceptionally unique for the PlayStation 5.

 

From that review, the pros:

  • Third person shooting, roguelike loop, and enough combat depth to have the two systems overlap without friction
  • Dozens of artifacts and parasites to give Selene a fighting chance
  • Excellent implementation of all DualSense features
  • Each map is randomly generated but filled with handcrafted maps and combat arenas
  • A good Dreadbound build is my favorite playstyle in all of Returnal
  • Each complete run lasts up to an hour and a half


Cons:

  • Being struck by unseen enemies and losing half your life is a common occurrence
  • Half the weapon roster either underpowered or utterly useless for long range encounters
  • Getting your corpse scavenged and taking a negative ailment in an otherwise perfect run isn't cool
  • Many lore pieces relegated to audio logs and alien scripture tucked away across randomly generated stages
  • Occasional dips below 60 FPS during firefights with high explosion counts
  • Malignancy effects are rampant in Act Two with nearly 50% of every item drop covered in negative effects


Reviewer loved it. 

 

9.3

 

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1 hour ago, SaysWho? said:

If you're worried about roguelikes or it being too hard (that means you @stepee and @best3444), here's this reviewer's impression (no story spoilers or gameplay spoilers or anything like that):

 

 

 

 

 

This is fantastic news all around! Thanks for the spoiler free impressions/reviews and if I had a PS5 I'd be really hyped right now. I can't wait until tomorrow to read all the reviews. 

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2 hours ago, SaysWho? said:

 

Another leak. This review is more spoilery, so I'm copying the non-spoilers:

 

returnal-logo.jpg
WEBCACHE.GOOGLEUSERCONTENT.COM

Housemarque has succeeded with their fusion of third-person shooting and roguelike elements in Returnal, one of my favorite PS5 titles so far

 

 

From that review, the pros:

  • Third person shooting, roguelike loop, and enough combat depth to have the two systems overlap without friction
  • Dozens of artifacts and parasites to give Selene a fighting chance
  • Excellent implementation of all DualSense features
  • Each map is randomly generated but filled with handcrafted maps and combat arenas
  • A good Dreadbound build is my favorite playstyle in all of Returnal
  • Each complete run lasts up to an hour and a half


Cons:

  • Being struck by unseen enemies and losing half your life is a common occurrence
  • Half the weapon roster either underpowered or utterly useless for long range encounters
  • Getting your corpse scavenged and taking a negative ailment in an otherwise perfect run isn't cool
  • Many lore pieces relegated to audio logs and alien scripture tucked away across randomly generated stages
  • Occasional dips below 60 FPS during firefights with high explosion counts
  • Malignancy effects are rampant in Act Two with nearly 50% of every item drop covered in negative effects


Reviewer loved it. 

 

9.3

 

After reading that Cons list I did not expect a 9.3 at the end. 

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2 minutes ago, Bloodporne said:

After reading that Cons list I did not expect a 9.3 at the end. 

 

Quite likely the pros are a bigger deal as pros than the cons are as cons.

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Just now, SaysWho? said:

 

Quite likely the pros are a bigger deal as pros than the cons are as cons.

And granted, being struck by unseen enemies is like TPS 101 at this point. 

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2 hours ago, SaysWho? said:

 

Another leak. This review is more spoilery, so I'm copying the non-spoilers:

 

returnal-logo.jpg
WEBCACHE.GOOGLEUSERCONTENT.COM

Housemarque has succeeded with their fusion of third-person shooting and roguelike elements in Returnal, one of my favorite PS5 titles so far

 

 

From that review, the pros:

  • Third person shooting, roguelike loop, and enough combat depth to have the two systems overlap without friction
  • Dozens of artifacts and parasites to give Selene a fighting chance
  • Excellent implementation of all DualSense features
  • Each map is randomly generated but filled with handcrafted maps and combat arenas
  • A good Dreadbound build is my favorite playstyle in all of Returnal
  • Each complete run lasts up to an hour and a half


Cons:

  • Being struck by unseen enemies and losing half your life is a common occurrence
  • Half the weapon roster either underpowered or utterly useless for long range encounters
  • Getting your corpse scavenged and taking a negative ailment in an otherwise perfect run isn't cool
  • Many lore pieces relegated to audio logs and alien scripture tucked away across randomly generated stages
  • Occasional dips below 60 FPS during firefights with high explosion counts
  • Malignancy effects are rampant in Act Two with nearly 50% of every item drop covered in negative effects


Reviewer loved it. 

 

9.3

 


That last con is interesting. On the Bombcast they sorta listed that as a pro as they enjoyed the extra goals it gave you to accomplish in order to lift the ailment 

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13 minutes ago, Mercury33 said:


That last con is interesting. On the Bombcast they sorta listed that as a pro as they enjoyed the extra goals it gave you to accomplish in order to lift the ailment 

 

And the guys on the bombcast also couldn't wrap their head around Pac-Man 99 :silly:

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  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to Returnal (30 April 2021) - Information Thread, update: "The Tide" launch trailer

Housemarque with a letter to fans:

 

 

"At the time it was very hard to see which, if any, of the projects would be moving us forward in the years to come. Our multiplayer PvP prototype seemed at the time as a necessary experiment as the industry seemed to have moved on from single-player games towards multiplayer games. We were thinking that if we don’t have anything to show on that front, we might be out of the business very soon as we wouldn’t be able to sell any projects to publishers anymore. "

 

"Although we managed to release one of the best reviewed new game of 2017 according to metacritic, we were certainly left disappointed with the sales leading me to declare #arcadeisdead and ending our long standing commitment to the arcade genre. Giving up on the genre didn’t mean that we’d be giving up on our deep commitment to fast-twitch action gameplay. Instead, we wanted to take on the challenge to figure out how we could translate our arcade 2D gameplay expertise into a 3rd person action game. On the other hand, it was still very uncertain, if we’d be able to move past the prototype phase and convince Sony to keep on funding a new, unproved concept. The concept was ridiculously ambitious and looking back we as a company really weren’t totally appreciating the challenge ahead of us and how hard it could be to tackle it.


In the age when game publishers are taking less and less creative risks, we are truly thankful to our publishing partner Sony, who has given us an opportunity to work on something very risky and has given fantastic support during the whole project.  We are forever grateful for having this opportunity."

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2 minutes ago, Mercury33 said:

Seems a bit contrary to the “Sony hates smaller unique things” narrative. 

 

Well, some people on this board think third person with trees means it's the same kind of game, so it's easy for them to get caught up in that.

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"Returnal is a relentless meditation on not giving up"

 

Returnal_20210424011831.jpg
WWW.POLYGON.COM

Housemarque’s PS5 exclusive elevates the time loop genre

 

 

"Even after more than 60 runs of Returnal, the enchanting presentation and sense of discovery still remain. I now feel vigorous compared to the creatures that have tried to defend their territory against an unwanted visitor. The last boss only took me one try to beat it, yet I could barely make any progress in finding the right answers. I feel like I’m running in circles. But I’m not giving up. "

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Game Information

Game Title: Returnal

Platforms:

  • PlayStation 5 (Apr 30, 2021)

Developer: Housemarque

Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
    
Review Aggregator

OpenCritic - 86 average - 89% recommended

Critic Reviews


Daily Star - 5 / 5 stars

I have thoroughly enjoyed playing Returnal so far and its unique die-and-start-over mechanic, excellent graphics, gameplay and sound all work brilliantly to deliver yet another fantastic first-party exclusive for the PS5.


Digital Chumps - 10 / 10

Housemarque’s Returnal is a brutal roguelike that constantly keeps the fun coming through its well-thought-through item system that is exquisitely balanced and its randomized gameplay design that feels fresh after every death. Definitely a must-have game for the PlayStation 5.


Game Rant - 5 / 5 stars

Housemarque's Returnal is a shining example of what the studio is capable of, packing tight gameplay together with an interesting world.


GameSpew - 10 / 10

Playing Returnal, it feels like next-gen has truly begun.


PlayStation LifeStyle - 10 / 10

Returnal is an essential PS5 title, now and throughout the console's life. Housemarque took the rogue-like bullet-hell formula and applied it to a AAA experience in a way that creates something exceptionally unique yet wholly familiar. Returnal is an engaging experience in narrative, gameplay, and player discovery, consistently surprising on every level. Utilizing the PS5 technology in a way that most other developers are barely tapping into, Returnal feels like one of the first truly next-gen experiences, letting Housemarque set the stage for the new console. And like Housemarque games before it, it's the kind of game that will withstand the test of time, begging for additional cycles well into the future.


PSX Brasil - Portuguese - 98 / 100

Returnal is beautiful, extremely addictive and has an intriguing story. Even if you're not a fan of the genre, give it a try, I'm sure your experience here will be worth every minute of your time.


Game Informer - 9.5 / 10

Returnal brilliantly meshes roguelike mechanics with precise combat and enigmatic exploration, making for an excellent game


Game Revolution - 9.5 / 10

As it did with the PS3, Vita, and PS4, Housemarque has once again provided Sony with another launch-era hit and in doing so has created a rewarding, replayable, and revolutionary game that’s hopefully the foundation for other future AAA titles that are as clever with the roguelite blueprint.


Geek Culture - 9.5 / 10

A truly AAA sci-fi roguelike masterpiece full of intense moments and inviting mysteries, Returnal continually reminds us of why we love Housemarque so much in the first place.


God is a Geek - 9.5 / 10

Returnal's fluid, graceful movement and satisfying, punchy gunplay combine with a sense of exploration at once both wondrous and morbid, and a drip-fed progression system that makes you feel like you're always discovering or unlocking something new.


Nexus Hub - 9.5 / 10

As much as I can break down all the great things about Returnal, I think a simpler statement would be that this is the strongest candidate for Game of the Year so far for me. More importantly, is the addictiveness that is repetitive insistence in trying to conquer a challenge that has done nothing but beat you down. The joy and elation when you finally beat a section you have struggled with, or a boss that has given you your backside, is a feeling that is indescribable, and that is what Returnal is: indescribable.


WellPlayed - 9.5 / 10

Returnal is a challenging, atmospheric and creative experience that boasts amazingly smooth and satisfying gameplay. Add in an intriguing narrative, graphical excellence and some impressive utilisation of the DualSense controller and Returnal might just be an instant PlayStation classic.


Fextralife - 9.3 / 10

A sleeper hit, Returnal is bound to captivate you from start to finish, no pun intended. If you are a fan of good Sci-fi in the vein of The Expanse, Stranger Things, or Mass Effect, you surely won't want to miss this game. Returnal is the early front runner for Game of the Year 2021, making a compelling case to get a Playstation 5...if you can find one.


IGN Italy - Italian - 9.3 / 10

Housemarque delivers an unforgettable experience: Returnal is an intoxicating action game that thrives on its design and aestethic.


Wccftech - 9.3 / 10

Barring a sci-fi horror tale that doesn't quite nail the slow building reveal, Housemarque has absolutely succeeded with their fusion of third-person shooting and roguelike elements in Returnal, one of my personal favorite PlayStation 5 titles so far.


COGconnected - 92 / 100

Returnal is so much more than a rogue-like bullet-hell game. It tells a captivating, mysterious, and oftentimes haunting narrative with gorgeous, unsettling visuals and compelling voice acting. It offers a wide variety of collectibles, health upgrades, and unique features to give you a fresh and varied experience with each cycle, and gives players shortcuts so they can continue to press on with the story rather than have to complete every single biome time and time again. It’s tough but fair, with RNG playing a minor role in how difficult the next room will be. You’re going to die. A lot. That is the nature of this genre and this game, but it blends that concept so beautifully into the narrative design that you’ll only feel a momentary twinge of frustration before you set out again to help Selene reach the signal.


Video Chums - 9.2 / 10

Returnal absolutely blew me away with its challenging combat, atmospheric exploration, amazing sound design, and rewarding campaign setup. Housemarque crammed a ton of elements into this experience and everything comes together brilliantly.


Critical Hit - 9 / 10

Returnal is an unrelenting and unforgiving challenge for the ages, but it still captures the magic of what makes Housemarque so special. It has a weirdly unique style and substance, every level is an unpredictable white-knuckle ride and it fully commits to its rogue-like influences. The end result isn't just a showcase title for what the PS5 is capable of, it's a thrilling mix of arcade bullet-hell gaming with precision thrill power.


DualShockers - 9 / 10

A must-play for anyone with a PS5 who isn’t afraid to work through the frustrations of dying over and over again.


GRYOnline.pl - Polish - 9 / 10

Returnal is supposed to be the beginning of a new road for Housemarque. Known until now for its niche arcade games, the Finnish development team enters the AAA segment without any complexes.


GameSpot - 9 / 10

Returnal blends elements of shooters, roguelikes, action games, and horror to redefine bullet hell and conjure a mysterious, moody masterpiece.


Gameblog - French - 9 / 10

Returnal is the first big original PS5 exclusive, a fantastic game and a quite intense adventure. It looks great, plays wonderfully, tells a captivating story and is definitely an amazing AAA Rogue-like that PS5 owners will be delighted to play again and again.


GamingBolt - 9 / 10

Returnal is an astounding game, one that easily and instantly claims the proud title of being Housemarque's best game to date, and is an unmissable killer app very early in the PS5's life.


GamingTrend - 90 / 100

Firsts don't come around very often, but this is one of PlayStation's first PS5 exclusives and Housemarque's first triple A releases, and the combination is a triumphant success. I'm not sure how they've managed everything in play, taking the bullet-hell stylings of old and meshing them with the trappings of a third-person roguelike, but it works to a fantastic degree. On top of that, the action-packed gameplay is some of the best around, additionally being one of the most immersive and next-gen experiences available thanks to an incredible understanding of the DualSense controller. Yes, the story may take a backseat, but that's the nature of the roguelike genre, and doesn't hinder Returnal in the slightest. I may not be much for roguelikes, but I can see myself "returning" to play this one again and again.


Geeks & Com - French - 9 / 10

Though it might not he exactly what Housemarque got us used to, Returnal offers an excellent experience. It's a very difficult 3rd person roguelike that can be frustrating at times, but will also come up as greatly gratifying. When we figure out what to expect, we let ourselves be taken by the intriguing atmosphere and the decisions we have to take to survive. Housemarque did it once again.


Gfinity - 4.5 / 5 stars

Returnal is undoubtedly one of Housemarque’s best games and is a triumph for the PlayStation 5. The premise is interesting right off the bat, and the way the game feeds narrative breadcrumbs throughout the game only made me want to continue on. With the tight gameplay that the studio is known for, along with an intriguing story and blockbuster presentation, Housemarque hits all the right spots. Returnal sits as one of PlayStation’s most unique exclusives.


Glitched Africa - 9 / 10

Returnal went from a tough horror game to a brilliant arcade roguelike bullet-hell shooter. Very few games can evolve this way. Returnal is roguelike at its finest and one of the best reasons to own a PS5.


Metro GameCentral - 9 / 10

What should have been a hotchpotch of other people's ideas, made worse by frustratingly high difficulty, is in reality one of the most cleverly designed video games of recent years, with superb action and endless replayability.


PlayStation Universe - 9 / 10

Returnal is a masterclass in how to create gripping, exhilarating arcade action and feels like the first game to truly realise the PS5's potential. It uses everything the system offers to craft an experience completely unlike anything else available today at this budget. Apart from narrative missteps, Housemarque's latest is flawless and a game that everyone who owns a PS5 and every gamer should experience at some point. I hope this is the start of a new, prosperous franchise for PlayStation and Housemaque.


Press Start - 9 / 10

With some doubt at the front of people's minds, Returnal is a shushing finger across the lips of detractors as well as a tremendous example that PlayStation's middle line titles can still offer as much value and entertainment as its tentpole exclusives. Housemarque achieves an atmosphere like few can and set up a universe ripe for expansion while marrying it to a grind - which is more forgiving than most of its kind but will still alienate some -that's both brutal and gratifying all at once.


Push Square - 9 / 10

Housemarque has delivered the PS5 promise with Returnal. All the console's bells and whistles enhance the experience, making this a real showpiece for the hardware. But more than that, the game is a force to be reckoned with; the breathless combat, super slick gameplay, and the subtle but unsettling story combine for an experience of surprising scale. Rogue-lite aspects mean it won't gel with everyone, but for those looking for a challenging, addictive arcade shooter, this comes highly recommended.


SomHráč.sk - Czech - 90 / 100

Even though I was excited for Returnal, I wasn't expecting Housemarque's first foray out of the arcade genre in a long time to be this well made. Returnal is an excellent game that will rank among the best PlayStation 5 games even in years to come.


Spiel Times - 9 / 10

It’s almost hard to believe that Housemarque have created their first third-person shooter with Returnal. Yet in doing so, they've instantly catapulted themselves to the top of the heap of action shooter developers.


The Games Machine - Italian - 9 / 10

Returnal is an amazing game. Metroidvania, roguelite and bullet hell mixed perfectly, and the result is fluid, rich and incredibly addictive action. The loop becomes the cornerstone of a mysterious, allegorical, at times terrifying narrative, capable of keeping you glued to DualSense from start to finish.


TheSixthAxis - 9 / 10

It feels immensely satisfying to be sat here in 2021, eons after playing Super Stardust HD on PS3, and see just how far Housemarque has come. Offering a visual bullet hell spectacle, a showcase for the DualSense controller and a rewarding sci-fi narrative woven around the roguelike loop, we can say with unflinching confidence that Returnal is the PS5's best game to date.


TrueGaming - Arabic - 9 / 10

Returnal is an engaging and intriguing game from the start till the very last second


VideoGamer - 9 / 10

Complex systems are made simple, by committing their clutter to muscle memory, and play-good play, at any rate-requires that you, like Selene, ride its enigmatic loop.


We Got This Covered - 4.5 / 5 stars

Returnal cast a spell on me -- awing with explosive combat, immersing with haptics, and captivating with a monumental atmosphere. Not only is it an easy game of the year contender, but it might also be one of the best action rogue-lites ever made.


IGN Middle East - Arabic - 8.9 / 10

Returnal is both a stark departure from Housemarque’s previous stable of games, and also a familiar experience that the studio is well known for. It at least proves that they are capable of producing AAA-games that are able to take strides with the best of PlayStation exclusives, even when they are tackling an entirely new genre. It’s an expert blend of third-person exploration and bullet-hell shooting with many layers of customization that makes every playthrough exciting - even if the current system is skewed towards more of a roll of the dice than pure skill. Returnal is a punishing and a heart-pounding affair that requires precise execution and utmost mastery of the game, neither of those that will be easy to come by.


GamePro - German - 88 / 100

Returnal is a high-end rogue-like shooter whose many strengths overwhelm balancing weaknesses.


Worth Playing - 8.8 / 10

If there's a sticking point to Returnal, it's that it's a big PS5 exclusive that is most definitely not for everyone. It's next-gen beautiful all the way, but if you've never played a game like this before, even all that beauty and amazing design might not be worth the sense of dejection you might feel as the body count starts mounting. Returnal and other games like it will force newer players to ask questions about what kind of games they want to experience. It takes a little bit of weird thinking to relish the prospect of repeated punishment. I recommend it, just for the experience of it. If you're part of that wider audience who wants to give a next-gen roguelike a shot, then be prepared for an awakening. And another one. And … another one.


Cerealkillerz - German - 8.7 / 10

Returnal is by far the most interesting game this year and offers everything that we are used to from Housemarque, in a level of quality and scope that I didn't thought was possible for this studio. A lot of excitement is lost due to random collectibles later in the game and not all of the roguelike elements fully come together in the end as intended. Still, no PS5 owner should miss out on Returnal.


Everyeye.it - Italian - 8.7 / 10

It is a powerful act of courage, a "leap into the void" that could usher in a bright future for Housemarque or put his work at risk. Recklessness and ambition are not enough to break through, but in this case they are accompanied by a grandiose creative vision, solid production values and meticulous and calculated design. Returnal does not achieve Hades' perfection, but is destined to make his mark in the Roguelike landscape.


Easy Allies - 8.5 / 10

Returnal is a great new step for Housemarque on the PS5, thanks to its excellent gameplay, intriguing narrative, and replayability. *Review Copy Provided by PlayStation*


Gaming Nexus - 8.5 / 10

Returnal is a shining technical achievement, possibly the best looking game on PlayStation 5. With addictive gunplay, a brutal learning curve, and a focus on exploration and temporary buffs, roguelike fans will be in heaven. Be warned though, the difficulty level is not for everyone. Though I learned to love Returnal with time, many players may walk away frustrated.


Nerdburglars - 8.5 / 10

Returnal is a whole lot of fun to play. The adrenaline-fueled combat is complemented with flawless controls. The Dualsense haptics further amplifies the action, absorbing you into the game. The story contains more than enough mystery to catch the attention of any sci-fi lover. It drives you to discover more and does a great job at trying to explain the mechanics of a roguelike in a more mature and detailed way. The randomness of the game can be a little frustrating at times when you just can't find the items you need to survive. The inability to apply any permanent upgrades that impact your combat strength makes it very hard to stay engaged when you are faced with an obstacle that is proving to be a real challenge. Difficulty goes hand and hand with the genre and despite making your blood boil from time to time, Returnal is a masterpiece for the roguelike genre and was a worthwhile risk for the development team that really paid off. It doesn't matter how much you get your ass kicked, you will keep coming back for more.


Next Gen Base - 8.5 / 10

Returnal is a really strange beast. It’s a game from a studio that have very clearly been given the funding to make a big budget version of the type of game they want to, and it really shows. There’s a very thin line between accepting that you made a mistake and ranting that the game screwed you over, and Housemarque have got it right with their mechanics. If you die, you learn from it and go again. Thankfully, the PS5 makes this incredibly quick, and it’ll have its hooks in you for “just one more run”. If I had to pick holes in it, I just wish there were a little bit more permanence to some of the upgrades you pick up, but I know this will diminish some of the ‘purity’ of the game. While I know some of this will be met with derision at openly admitting to not quite finishing it, I can only hope that the impressions I’ve had of Returnal give you an idea of what to expect if you pick up this absolute gem of a title. Now, Housemarque, here’s the Yellow Pages. Make a game based on that.


PowerUp! - 8.5 / 10

Returnal makes an important, evolutionary (house)marque on the arcade shooter landscape.


AnaitGames - Spanish - 8 / 10

Housemarque experiments with genre and narrative without losing its arcade DNA.


Daily Mirror - 4 / 5 stars

While the PS5 has hinted at its power with the odd excellent remake and some impressive cross-gen titles, Returnal genuinely feels like the first truly fresh title designed for a new generation of hardware. Gorgeous graphics, intelligent controls and an astounding level of immersion combine to create an atmospheric thriller that wouldn't have been possible on older hardware. The game is tough, but every failed loop is a lesson learned, a push to do better and a pull to uncover more of the game's plot.


Digital Trends - 4 / 5 stars

Returnal takes full advantage of the PS5's features to give players a fast and furious sci-fi spectacle.


Digitally Downloaded - 4 / 5 stars

Scratch beneath that surface and the game doesn’t say much to justify its existence, and it is going to be far too challenging for a lot of players, but within its fairly narrow scope, for the audience that it was made for, Returnal is going to be a vividly entertaining ride.


EGM - 8 / 10

Returnal excellently blends third-person shooter gameplay with bullet-hell style enemies and roguelike elements to craft a fun, challenging action game that you'll have a blast learning to master. The only real shame is that the action is yoked to a story that mistakes being vague for being smart and interesting.


Filmweb - Polish - 8 / 10 stars

You’ll die. A lot. But then, you’ll stand up and go deeper into madness. Housemarque made a brilliant piece of code, elevating bullet hell genre to another level. Now, they can proudly stand among other AAA creators.


GameMAG - Russian - 8 / 10

Returnal is a bold sci-fi adventure, where the plot and the setting co-exist in a very natural way, while everything else being brought to life trough unique DualSense features and great sound from Pulse 3D headset.


GamesRadar+ - 4 / 5 stars

Returnal can be messy, tough, and perhaps a little too uncompromising for a $70 game. And yet, despite the moments of pad-clenching exasperation, it remains a moreish experience even after you've plummeted its depths.


Hardcore Gamer - 4 / 5

Returnal stands as Housemarque's most ambitious title yet, taking the studio away from the arcade genre and into uncharted territory.


IGN - 8 / 10

Its roguelike runs are too long and it needs a way to save in the middle of them, but Returnal's third-person shooter action, clever story, and atmosphere are excellent.


IGN Spain - Spanish - 8 / 10

Returnal mixes the peculiarities of roguelike with continuous progress that rewards the efforts and dedication of the player, with an enigmatic story that will keep us prisoners of that house that we will visit (or not) in each new attempt. Perhaps it fails in trying to offer an experience like infinite roguelike.


Kakuchopurei - 80 / 100

I won't mince words. If you're expecting to play through Returnal just for the story or expecting it to be like any other AAA PlayStation exclusive before it, then you should probably skip it altogether. Returnal is for those who are ready to grit their teeth for some truly unforgiving and punishing combat. Consider that a genuine warning.


Merlin'in Kazanı - Turkish - 80 / 100

Returnal the game that combines roguelike and metroidvania genres, using horror elements as spice. Combining so many different types in them, it has managed to keep the aspects that all of them are successful in, despite some of their shortcomings.


Saudi Gamer - Arabic - 8 / 10

A fast paced and intense shooter true to the developer's pedigree, with an intriguing and mysterious world, marred only slightly by some control issues and its brevity


Screen Rant - 4 / 5 stars

Returnal is a brutally difficult roguelite shooter.


Spaziogames - Italian - 8 / 10

Returnal is the most important game for Housemarque, with a stellar gameplay and a ever changing structure of levels. However, procedural algorithms create some problem with casual enemy spawn and luck managment.


Telegraph - 4 / 5 stars

Dazzling next-gen graphics belie a hardcore rogue-like which could test your patience as much as your reflexes


VG247 - 4 / 5 stars

While Returnal’s marriage of rogue-like loops and serpentine story isn’t perfect, it’s a dark, engaging, and innovative experience which provides plenty of gameplay grunt to match its brain-teasing plot.


Destructoid - 7.5 / 10

Returnal is a mostly thrilling sci-fi action romp that suffers from a lack of scale at times. In the moment, I'm completely fixated on my run, upgrading like a fiend, and dashing around for iFrames like I was playing a Capcom game. But after that run ends and I'm looking at the bigger picture, Returnal can feel a little smaller than it actually is. Keep that in mind before you take the pricey plunge.


Enternity.gr - Greek - 7.5 / 10

Returnal brings smiles, combining relentless action with amazing people and a good story, but also a very atmospheric sound and deep lore. However, to enjoy it for ten minutes, you will probably spent hours irritated, without feeling that you progress.


Post Arcade (National Post) - 7.5 / 10

Housemarque's PlayStation 5 exclusive is a punishingly tough roguelike shooter with great action – assuming you don't mind diving into bullet hell.


AusGamers - 7 / 10

Enemies spawn in unpredictable ways, and for what it thinks it's worth, Returnal tries to keep you guessing, on your toes, and Eveready -- like the battery.


SECTOR.sk - Slovak - 7 / 10

Returnal is a game unlike any other. But with flaws and bugs like many other games.


TheGamer - 3.5 / 5 stars

At its core, Returnal is one of the most satisfying third-person shooters I’ve played - it’s Hades via Vanquish. It forces you to meet it at its tempo and doesn’t relent. It makes Doom Eternal seem like Baby’s First Shooter. It’s gorgeous, frenetic, and endlessly replayable. I just wish success wasn’t so tied to luck, which only exacerbates any frustrations you have when repeatedly trekking through areas you’ve already beaten. Even after the credits rolled, I felt satisfied, but that satisfaction was also mixed with relief - the ordeal was finally over and the chiropractor's elbow has been removed from the small of my back.


GamesBeat - 3 / 5 stars

This lack of variety in the style of play makes every run feel samey, and they begin to blur together. That leads to a roteness that made me want to put down the game when I was struggling with the difficulty. I like challenging games, but roguelites need to walk a fine line between familiarity and routine. Familiarity is the warm embrace of something that feels like home. Routine is boredom, and it is poison for a game like this.


Paste Magazine - 6 / 10

I'm cynical because the assumption that Housemarque has made here is that AAA games are a genre unto themselves, one whose form is based on cinematic regurgitation, excess, and the speed of disposability. And what sucks is they're slowly being proven right. Prestige television came early to this console generation, and I'm sure for many it will happily pass the time and then it will pass away into memory because memories are short, and there's always a next big thing, and then a bigger next big thing.


ACG - Buy

Returnal is one of the best games I have ever wanted to dropkick out my window. Coming out in the next couple days from Housemarque.


Ars Technica - Unscored

Returnal clearly heralds a new era for Housemarque, in terms of turning the focused arcade-blasting likes of Super Stardust HD into quest-worthy 3D action. Keep it coming, Sony and Housemarque.


Console Creatures - Recommended

Housemarque has delivered its finest title to date and while it may not be for everyone, when the clicks, it is impossible to put down. Returnal offers a satisfying loop strengthened by a sense of discovery that few games offer.


Echo Boomer - Portuguese - Liked-a-lot

By remixing ideas and concepts from other high profile games, the bits of originality stand out. While its refreshing, Returnal is also very intimidating in the long run with risk reward decision starting with time to play confortable.


Eurogamer - Recommended

In Returnal, Housemarque builds a game on both euphoric highs and confounding lows.


GameOnAUS - Disliked

If you like challenging games which require reflexes, juggling several different threats at once, and grinding through levels to improve your skills – and are interested in a sci-fi thriller – then Returnal will have a lot to offer. For gamers looking for a more accommodating action/adventure experience, or wanting something that doesn’t have more grind than a lensmaking factory, however, Returnal is not the game you’re looking for.


GameXplain - Liked-a-lot

Video Review - Quote not available


Kotaku - Unscored

Returnal feels like a next-gen game.


Polygon - Unscored

Housemarque’s PS5 exclusive elevates the time loop genre


Skill Up - Unscored

Video Review - Quote not available


 

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"Returnal is an unrelenting and unforgiving challenge for the ages, but it still captures the magic of what makes Housemarque so special. It has a weirdly unique style and substance, every level is an unpredictable white-knuckle ride and it fully commits to its rogue-like influences. The end result isn’t just a showcase title for what the PS5 is capable of, it’s a thrilling mix of arcade bullet-hell gaming with precision thrill power."

 

 

8.5 from Easy Allies

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  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to Returnal (30 April 2021) - Information Thread, update: reviews from OpenCritic posted
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Returnal is the best reason to own a PS5 right now

 

Quote

Returnal is a system-seller in its own right. While many of the game's best ideas come from other rogue-lites, Housemarque has blended together all of these different elements into one uniquely satisfying package.

 

This remarkable game feels completely original in the big-budget gaming space, which often feels frustratingly risk-averse. Returnal stands shoulder-to-shoulder with beloved PlayStation exclusives like God of War and Ghost of Tsushima, and is the first must-play title of the new console generation. 

 

GamingBible: 9/10

 

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Let's do the time loop again.

 

 

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VANCOUVERSUN.COM

Housemarque's PlayStation 5 exclusive is a punishingly tough roguelike shooter with great action – assuming you don't mind diving into bullet hell.

 

Quote

I don’t see Returnal becoming another Uncharted-style mega-franchise for Sony. It’s just too punishing and quirky to nab a massive audience. That said, it’s a well-produced and polished play that doesn’t really feel like anything else out there at the moment. If you’re not afraid of a challenge, it may be worth adding to your PlayStation playlist.

 

Playstation Tropies: 91%

 

Quote

Developer Housemarque has achieved a seemingly impossible task, balancing fast-paced action with a slow-burn story and an incredible atmosphere, and done so with a flourish, at that. Returnal is an utterly essential addition to the PlayStation 5 library; a game that will creep and crawl and whisper its way into your brain, staying with you long after you’ve put down the controller, dragging you back for more, again, and again, and again

 

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Play 10/10 

 

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PLAY.CO.RS

Nakon par meseci, došlo je vreme da PS5 dobije svoju prvu potpunu konzolnu ekskluzivu, kako je Demon’s Souls samo rimejk, dok su ostale sve multiplatform igre. Returnal je delo simpatičnog studija Housemarque iz Finske koji je poznat po fantastičnim naslovima poput Resogun i Nex Machina. Ovde po prvi put deluje kao da ovaj studio ima […]

 

Gamespew 10/10 

 

Quote

Since its launch just six months ago, Sony’s PlayStation 5 has had a good amount of games that have showcased its next-gen capabilities. But nothing has highlighted them quite like Returnal.


From Housemarque, a company renowned for its arcade-style shooters, Returnal marks a new direction for the developer. A purposeful change of direction, actually, as Housemarque announced it was stepping away from its arcade roots back in 2017. And as much as we loved Alienation, Resogun et al., we’re so very glad it took that leap of faith: Returnal is phenomenal.

 

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WWW.GAMESPEW.COM

This isn't just Housemarque's best game yet, it's also perhaps the best game currently available on PS5. Here's our Returnal review.

 

God Is Geek: 9.5/10

 

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In Returnal, fluid, graceful movement and satisfying, punchy gunplay combine with a sense of exploration at once both wondrous and morbid.

 

Comicbook: 4.5/5

 

Quote

Returnal may not beat out other more anticipated titles for Game of the Year honors at the end of the year, but its won’t by any means be forgotten as the potential of next-gen hardware is explored. It’s a shame the game isn’t available on the PlayStation 4 or even other platforms so that more players could experience it, but if that compromise means we get more games like Returnal, that’s a convincing argument. Other games may employ similar mechanics in the future, but Returnal should always be remembered as one of the ones that did it first, and, as of now, did it best.

 

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COMICBOOK.COM

Returnal feels like a game that’s slipped under many people’s radars. Perhaps you’ve seen it [...]

 

Well Played: 9.5/10

 

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WWW.WELL-PLAYED.COM.AU

A roguelike revelation

 

@Commissar SFLUFAN I can't do anymore. :p But hope this helps pad out what you already have.

 

 

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I didn't need to see Review scores to know I'd probably dig this game.  I've avoided most coverage like I do most games I'm excited for.  

 

Only thing I wish I had was the ability to use a controller with paddles underneath.  I've become to used to using my Xbox Elite controllers with the paddles, it really does come in handy so much during certain games.  When I play without them it stands out.

 

This will be my first real PS5 game I'll be dumping a lot of time into, after I played through Astrobot, so I am excited to get more time with the Dual Sense.

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1 hour ago, JPDunks4 said:

I didn't need to see Review scores to know I'd probably dig this game.  I've avoided most coverage like I do most games I'm excited for.  

 

Only thing I wish I had was the ability to use a controller with paddles underneath.  I've become to used to using my Xbox Elite controllers with the paddles, it really does come in handy so much during certain games.  When I play without them it stands out.

 

This will be my first real PS5 game I'll be dumping a lot of time into, after I played through Astrobot, so I am excited to get more time with the Dual Sense.

 

I'm glad I have the platinum headset now. 3D audio in this game is sounding sick.

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