Returnal (PlayStation 5)

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Returnal is a very interesting game, a big, expensive production that is completely uncompromising in aesthetics, storytelling and gameplay. Alien-esque visuals, dark and discordant atmospheric music, a world where you are utterly alone, and a story told through Selene's sparse monologue, which hints at a fascinating sci fi mystery.
In contrast, the fast third-person shooter gameplay demands precision and mastery over sophisticated controls, and the uncompromising roguelike-inspired structure keeps the game interesting, while threatening with the loss of hours of progress.
As I have come to expect from veteran PlayStation developer Housemarque with roots on the Amiga, this PlayStation 5-native game runs flawlessly and is a joy to play.
screenshot
Image source: pushsquare.com

Facts

    2021-05-01
  • [11869]
    You can go back to the Helios and sleep to restore some health.
  • [11870]
    Translocators are teleporters that are usable after getting the proper artifact and then touching them.
  • [11871]
    After sleeping at the Helios, enemies stay dead.
  • [11872]
    I believe the triangular doors are dead ends with loot, and rectangular doors connect to the rest of the map.
  • 2021-05-02
  • [11877]
    The Astronaut Figurine is an instant respawn, which can be seen as the recycling arrow next to your health.
  • [11878]
    Proficiency is your per-cycle weapon pickup level. It increases with kills and certain items. Proficiency Rate is how fast it grows with kills.
  • [11879]
    Ether can be used for 1) The Reconstructor (6 for an extra life), 2) removing 'curses' from chests and the like, 3) exchange for Oobelites, and 4) The Cthonos, which produces per-cycle items and gets more expensive per purchase.

Log entries

    2021-04-28
  • [11846]
    I have pre-ordered this at full price, i.e. 529 DKK.
  • 2021-04-30
  • [11855]
    Downloading version 1.003.000 10 GB patch...
  • [11856]
    This game is very good so far. I'm so happy that a game like this exists in 2021. Every choice made so far is something that appeals to me. The Alien-esque visual aesthetics, the dark atmospheric music, a world where you are utterly alone, with almost no dialogue, the complicated and lightning-fast action, and a mysterious story that hints at a huge sci fi mystery. And this is a big expensive game as well. Amazing.
  • [11857]
    I need to figure out what the door shapes mean on the map.
  • [11858]
    Another question: is weapon proficiency permanent?
  • 2021-05-01
  • [11873]
    After watching Malu play two very long runs where she got to the boss of the first area, I played a single run before going to bed. I ended up doing pretty well myself, I got the sword, found the surreal house and entered it, and fought the boss twice. I'll get him next time.
  • 2021-05-02
  • [11874]
    I had a really good run and managed to beat Phrike. My pulse is pounding like crazy. This game is one of the most stressful experiences since playing the Souls games for the first time.
  • [11875]
    I died in the red desert, but I feel great about beating the first area.
  • [11876]
    I completed a daily challenge run with 409.408 points, which is rank 4100 out of 7697 playing today.
  • [11880]
    I did another run in the red desert. I reached the end boss, a horrible warped angelic creature.
  • 2021-05-04
  • [11883]
    I reached the second boss, Ixion twice, and died twice. If only I had had a Astronaut figurine.
  • 2021-05-06
  • [11885]
    Got the Ascension trophy. - I played a very intense run where I ended up in the Crimson Wastes with low health but a whole bunch of good upgrades and a good weapon. I found the shop but didn't have enough Obolites to get a health Consumable. After running all over, I managed to find enough Obolites in rocks to buy it, and I went to fight the boss, IXION. I managed to beat it, and got the Grapnel upgrade. I immediately flung myself down from the mountain and died. But the Grapnel is a permanent upgrade.
  • 2021-05-07
  • [11886]
    I visited Martin and played some Returnal on his awesome surround sound setup. It was cool to hear the bullets impact behind me.
  • 2021-05-08
  • [11887]
    I had to go back to the Crimson Wastes to proceed to the new area, the Derelict Citadel, which is an cool looking place full of robots.


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