During The Game Awards showcase that took place recently, we got a look at a number of games. One of those is the PS5 exclusive Returnal. It’s a weird play on the soulslike genre, twisting it to form a new sort of sub-grnre that squeezes in sci-fi and Cthulhu lore all at once. I’m really interested in the game, and love the look of it. The problem is, I’m also quite scared of what I’m going to experience when it finally launches. It looks like it could break be.
Looking at this game, it seems to be the swansong for an older astronaut who suddenly finds themselves stuck in a time loop on an alien world. This is pretty interesting as far as the concept goes on the whole, but it’s the fact that the planet changes with every death and rebirth that I love the most. You can’t get used to the environment because it’ll be different the next time you’re there. This makes only the bosses and other enemies something you can compete with, but even they could be changing with every loop you make.
Towards the end there’s also some sort of link to the astronaut’s home and history. That’s what makes me most terrified of playing this game. It’s going to have a link to the past that makes me question everything I know about reality. Games are wonderful when they do this, but it’s also very hard to get your head around. I suspect that there will be people, myself included, playing this game multiple times just to try to figure out what is going on behind the scenes.
The PS5 doesn’t have too many exclusives at the moment. To be honest, there aren’t even that many games that have specifically released for it. I can’t wait for Returnal to come along and offer something new and interesting. It’ll be a game that people play and don’t get right away. It’s going to take perseverance and stamina to beat and understand in the way that the developers have designed. Hopefully, it lives up to its marketing when it launches early next year.