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Returnal Review

Returnal Review

Returnal is an excellent PC version of a PlayStation exclusive game and should be purchased by anyone who hasn't already played it on PS5. Curious to know why? Let’s review it together.

Selene, our protagonist, has to battle an array of bizarre alien creatures who bombard her with a variety of brightly colored energy beams in the darker environments of Atropos. To stay alive and continue on her treacherous journey, she must utilize the weapons she finds while exploring the procedurally generated world to fend off the enemies and dodge the incoming attacks. Death results in having to go through the entire "cycle" again, so the stakes are incredibly high during the battles in Returnal.

8Very Good
  • Unique and catchy story
  • Intense combat and replayability
  • Stunning visuals and 60FPS
  • Co-op mode available
  • Rewards for decisions tend to be minimal
  • Taking risks can often be too harsh

Everything You Need to Know About Returnal (PC)

Returnal™
Returnal™
11,69
from

Plot

The story behind Returnal is quite unique and catchy. After crash-landing on a planet that shifts and changes with each cycle, Selene must traverse the barren landscape of a long-lost civilization in search of her escape. With no one to rely on, she is pitted against a relentless array of enemies as she battles to survive. Each cycle brings with it new combinations of items and weapons to help her progress, offering exciting opportunities for diverse strategies and intense combat. The stunning visuals of this decaying world are full of surprises, from bullet hell-style battles to unexpected twists and turns.

As the mystery of the planet deepens with each loop, Returnal invites players to take on evolving challenges, no matter how many times they are defeated. Experience an ever-changing world of intense replayability, where only the bravest will make it to the end.

Gameplay

It appears that Selene has been entrapped for a much longer period than she remembers, a fact that is made clear by the presence of her former corpses and audio logs of her former selves. This narrative serves as an excellent set-up for a roguelike game, where the player is taken on a continuous journey through Atropos' levels. In each run, the player is presented with a series of rooms containing loot, secrets, traps, and enemies. Combat is intense and requires the player to be constantly on the move, attacking enemies while dodging their attacks and maintaining their Adrenaline buff.

returnal pc review

Making decisions while playing runs involve taking risks and seeking rewards—should you open a chest, knowing it may cause a negative effect? Should you attempt a difficult challenge room to gain extra rewards? Should you brave a lethal trap to get a health pick-up? Unfortunately, the rewards for these choices tend to be minimal, and the risks taken are often too harsh. Combat is so challenging that one wrong debuff or too much damage taken prior to a battle can ruin a run, no matter how far along you are. Therefore, it is not worth taking a chance for a slight increase to health (in a game where you should never get hurt in the first place), a slightly better gun, or one of the artifact buffs that, due to their uniqueness, rarely ever come into use.

Co-op Mode

In Co-op Mode, join forces with another PC player to explore the ever-changing labyrinth of Atropos. Hostile enemies remain, but the two of you can work together to survive. When using the Chronosis device, the host player can either invite a friend or be randomly matched with an online player. The progress of the host will determine the items available during the multiplayer session. When you arrive at the Tower of Sisyphus, you will be able to unlock the Icarian Grapnel and participate in a challenging gauntlet of combat. Fight your way through the tower to gain exclusive items, Scout logs, and previously unseen story fragments.

returnal review

Graphics

The visuals in Returnal are simply breathtaking, making for an unforgettable experience. The alien environment is both beautiful and haunting, featuring creatures and machines that draw inspiration from the Alien films and the art of HR Giger. Against this eerie backdrop, the combat explodes with noise and light, creating a dazzling display of neon bullets and blasts that evoke Super Stardust. Even two years after its original launch on PS5, the graphics are still stunning, and the game runs smoothly at a consistent 60FPS, no matter how busy the action gets. It's the perfect combination for a game that requires lightning-fast and precise reactions.

Is it worth playing?

Absolutely. Returnal offers an intense and unique roguelike experience in a stunningly beautiful world. The ever-changing dungeons provide an exciting challenge that keeps players coming back for more. With its intense combat, unique weapons, and procedurally generated levels, Returnal is an engaging game that is definitely worth playing.

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