If you're not already, you should be paying attention to Housemarque. The Finnish developer has been crafting fantastic arcade games since the mid-90s, and has often partnered with Sony to bring these to PlayStation. If you've played Super Stardust HD, Dead Nation, Resogun, Alienation, or Nex Machina — to name a few — you'll have first-hand experience with its brand of bombastic, satisfying arcade gameplay.
For its debut on PS5, the team is building Returnal, a rogue-lite third person shooter about a stranded explorer who's caught in a loop in which death sends her back to her crash landing. After watching lots of brand new gameplay footage — which you can read more about in our preview — we spoke with game director Harry Krueger and marketing director Mikael Haveri all about the game. If you're curious about this title's structure, how it balances story with random elements, and what Housemarque has to say about value, read on.
Note: This interview has been edited for clarity.
Push Square: Just to recap, could you give us the rundown on Returnal?
Harry Krueger: Returnal is the biggest and most ambitious title we've ever made. On the one hand, it's a bit of a departure for us, but in many ways we feel it's a natural continuation of this arcade-inspired gameplay that we've been working on for the last two console generations. We're just taking all those lessons, that creative philosophy — tight and responsive controls, the audiovisual flair, explosive and intense combat — and really cranked it up to 13, taking it to the next level with Returnal.
The result is something that could be described as a third person, bullet hell, arcade adventure. It's enriched with a lot of rogue-like elements for variation and replayability, and also has a deep and compelling narrative. So this blend of different influences is definitely something that's been unique for us as a studio, but we also feel it offers a fairly fresh take on third person action.
You play as Selene, who winds up trapped on this alien planet, Atropos. Could you tell us a bit more about her?
HK: She's a Greek-American deep space scout who, perhaps against her better judgment, answers the call of the void — this mysterious signal that's emanating from this planet called Atropos. In the first moments of the game, we see her approaching the planet to investigate the signal. She crash lands there, and very quickly succumbs to the elements. Instead of finding release upon her death, she finds herself reawakening moments before the inevitable crash landing. So, she's trapped in this endless cycle where even death is no escape.
As a character, Selene is something that we're extremely proud of. It's the first time we're telling such a layered and deep story with such a strong protagonist. There are many layers to her that we're excited to talk about, but we'd rather just show some restraint and allow players to discover that as they dive into the world of Returnal with her.
As you mentioned, the game has rogue-like aspects to it. There are lots of random elements — weapons, upgrades, enemies, map layouts, etc. How do you ensure that every combination of these variables is fun to play?
HK: With Returnal, we've taken a bit of a hybrid approach to our procedural content. What that means in practice is that all areas — you have treasure rooms, combat spaces, traversal-based connecting areas, narrative spaces — all of these have been meticulously hand-crafted. So you get the maximum quality there with asset placement, lighting, narrative beats, audio design, so there's this consistent quality to those individual areas. However, these are combined and connected very freely across multiple runs.
The content you find in these areas is also procedurally generated. That means, even if you do identify a treasure room for example, or an arena space, it will often be filled with unfamiliar content. Sometimes you will have a certain combination of enemies and varying numbers, you might have just one elite enemy there, other times you might just find a treasure chest waiting for you. These are just some really quick examples of how we're embracing this variation and making sure that each run creates memorable player stories.
The term 'rogue-like' can be one that scares people off. It's a genre that typically provides a high level of challenge, progression is usually reset, and it can feel at times that you're not making any headway. What are you doing with Returnal to tackle these concerns people might have?
Mikael Haveri: So, we have a single difficulty setting, and the rogue-like elements scale in the sense that, you as a player kind of determine your pace. More aggressive players can jump into more challenging areas by choice; more timid players can maybe learn to keep away after a couple of deaths, so there's learning from your mistakes as well. As you play the game, you do open up permanent progress items. Things that really add to your repertoire, like the melee blade, and the hookshot. These allow you to traverse into new areas, and previously unseen compartments in familiar areas.
In general, what happens when you play more and more, it opens more pathways for you to choose to take and build your strategy. So for example, after you've defeated the first boss [for the first time], the portal to the next biome opens and stays open for your next sessions. Doing that, you can always go back to the boss, gear up, get a lot of health upgrades, level up your character and proficiency and weapons. All these things add up to making the run ahead of you that bit easier.
It's sort of catering to a lot of different tastes. The rogue-like name may be intimidating, but in the end, it's a third person shooter with a lot of cool variety.
HK: We have designed Returnal around replayability. Just like our previous games, we want it to be easy to pick up and hard to master. It should be accessible, yet deep. In many ways, we want it to be a game that, the more you play it, the more it opens up to you. As Mikael said, with permanent progression, and lots of layers to discover with the story, systems, weaponry, and the character herself — there's a lot of replay value, and that creates a lot of flexibility with how players can approach each run. That relationship people have with the difficulty will not be as rigid or intimidating as it might seem initially.
If we're getting technical, the game is more of a rogue-lite than a rogue-like; as you mentioned, it features some permanent progression. You're not going to always be starting from square one. Could you go into these a bit?
HK: After you defeat a boss, you gain access to a key that opens a passage to [the next biome]. Of course, we have a wide variety of biomes to explore. All of these milestones, they will persist across multiple sessions. That means you can carve out your own way to play over multiple runs; you can choose to take the shortcut to the next biome, or spend more time upgrading your character. You won't have a very rigid relationship with the game's challenge — it will allow you to approach it in any way you like. Combined with the variation each run provides, we feel it's going to be a world of different possibilities in every run for players.
On the flip side, what are some random elements players can get excited about?
HK: So for example, the Parasites are one aspect. These are intended to give you both a positive and negative modifier, so these might lead to a lot of tricky decisions for players, especially as the stakes get higher. Do you want to take that gamble? Sometimes it won't pay off, other times it will.
All of these [upgrades and equipment] are tracked in a central databank, and the more time you spend playing Returnal, the more it will open up to you. A lot of these elusive weapons, items, artefacts, permanent upgrades — once you get them, they'll be available to you from the beginning of the next run, enriching the variation as you spend more time with the game.
MH: To the extent that — for example the weapons, you always start with a level zero pistol, but when you move to the next areas, the unlockables there are now a bigger pool of the things you've uncovered in your previous runs.
From what we've seen so far, the game has Housemarque's fingerprints all over it. Fast-paced action, fluid movement, big visual effects — but it's also a third person shooter, which is new territory for you. What has it been like taking your brand of arcade action to this new perspective?
HK: At the heart of [our games], we always have really tight responsive controls. Players have a sacred bond with the controller that demands reverence, and we designed the controls to be really responsive and immediate from the get-go. Honestly, we nailed those within the first few months of prototyping; after that we haven't really touched them. So it's just keeping them as immediate and direct as possible so that, when a new player picks up Returnal, they identify it as a Housemarque game.
The controls and the visual flair you touched upon, those were somewhat straightforward to transfer to a third person perspective. But then of course we have all the enemies, the bullet hell elements, and the challenges that introduce a new dimension of possibilities with our verticality — new opportunities and challenges to solve there as well. So that means we have a wide range of different enemies, each with a unique role, a lot of different bullet patterns and projectile attacks. These have all been meticulously designed, tuned, and balanced to find that sweet spot where the game is always challenging, but not so much that it spirals out of control and becomes incomprehensible.
In the end, the game is the boss. We try something out, we playtest it, and if the game tells us this isn't working, we tune it further. And there's a lot of layers that come into this tuning, in terms of enemy attacks, timing, pacing, and spatial awareness. Even just notifying players where attacks are coming from — that's something that the 3D audio is helping us with. It gives this more crystallised positionality to certain attacks, and you can see that, oh, there's an enemy that's just spawned behind and to the right of me. It helps create this more intimate feedback loop for the core gameplay.
It looks really frantic to play, in the best way, and that's best shown off with a boss battle. Can you talk about the boss encounters?
HK: Most of our biomes will culminate with these climactic boss battles. These will really put your skills to the test, and have a lot of over-the-top bullet hell, and varied, unique challenges to provide. They just have really epic and memorable set-pieces individually as well.
You've seen the first boss, for the Overgrown Ruins, that shows that audiovisual flair, and the bullet hell that we're after. [The bosses] will also serve a role in the story and the player's permanent progression. There are lots of enemies in the game, some elite encounters as well, culminating with these boss fights. It's one of those things I'm really eager to read player's reactions when they first encounter these in the game.
With Returnal, you're putting a big focus on story, which is not something you've really done before. Can you talk about combining your strengths in gameplay with this narrative aspect?
MH: We do have a narrative team now, expanding the expertise internally has been a big part of it. Creating this from the beginning, Harry had a clear vision on how a rogue-like should play, and the story elements were always very much a part of that. So when you do enter the planet, you crash land with Selene, she's reacting to the world. You may pick up audio logs from previous corpses of Selene, which is kinda creepy, but those are the things that, you keep playing, and the audio's getting into your head, and you're maybe thinking about it, maybe not, but around the fourth audio log you start realising that Selene is just descending into this madness. This constant death is starting to have a huge impact on her, and that's how we start understanding her as a character, transforming with the planet.
We have layers of the alien civilisation being brought up; there's these old Xeno archives that have these cool particle projections that you can find, there's these stone tablets to decipher, you collect information and the alien language... Overall, this type of stuff compounds into layers that — you need to die and relive that to be able to unlock a lot of these narrative beats. Harry can go into the house sequences, which is a big part of this.
HK: From the get-go, we envisioned Returnal as a game where the gameplay and the story are inseparable. So, we have the rogue-like nature of the game, we're embracing that from every perspective to strengthen the narrative and not combat against it. Even after the first time you die, Selene will immediately start commenting that, the world wasn't like this before. That already is the narrative recognising the game's structure and vice versa. It's a central element of Selene's descent into madness and her emotional journey.
The narrative itself has been designed around haunting the player. We want questions to be lingering inside your mind, hopefully even after the credits roll, where you'll be wondering certain things, and interpreting them in different ways. It's definitely a game designed around mystery.
The house sequences are one thing Mikael touched upon. We have these first person sequences. The idea is that we shift away from this third person perspective to allow players to be in Selene's shoes and, from a first person perspective, have a much more intimate exploration of her mysterious past. It's also a great opportunity for haptic feedback and audio design to shine through.
As the game has so many procedurally generated aspects, I was wondering how you ensure the story carries forward at a good pace. Say for example a player is 10 hours in, and has done dozens of runs — will these house segments and other story elements still show up? How is it structured?
MH: There's a lot of layers. So of course, when you begin the game, you'll get small cutscenes, more of a tutorial aspect where you're learning with Selene. The further you go and the more things you unlock, the content changes as well. So the types of things you'll encounter are maybe a bit more complex, they might be there [to haunt you], there may be things that are purely there to stop the pacing and push elements that are so off-beat that it makes you stop and take a look. There's a lot of layered elements that add to this, but what's constant is that they're always in unison with player control.
The only part where we take a different pacing aspect is when you go into these first person sequences. Everything else is added on top of you always playing the game and having different types of story elements made available to you.
HK: To add to that, at any given moment you should have a fairly clear goal as a player. There should be something that's teasing you, haunting you, whether it's like a ledge you can't access or a chasm that seems impassable. There will always be clear goals for the player.
From a narrative perspective, there are as Mikael said lots of layers, and these will be woven into the experience at multiple steps along the way. So during small cinematic sequences, or maybe you find a device that recharges your health or gives you some other upgrade — interacting with that might give you flashbacks, or glimpses into the particular aspect of the story you should be focusing on at that point. So it's not just a very linear progress that's cut off after a certain point, it's an ever-present part of the game experience.
Let's talk about the PS5. This is your first game for the new console — how does it make use of PS5's hardware and features?
HK: We've been at the forefront of the last three PlayStation launches; on PlayStation 3 with Super Stardust HD, Resogun on PS4, and now another unique opportunity to be here with Returnal on PS5. It's always been exciting for us to dive into new tech possibilities with new hardware.
We touched upon the 3D audio briefly, that's one key aspect. Another one is the controller. The haptic feedback we have this time around has a new layer of fidelity and expression possibilities. It's taking that audiovisual feedback that we have, and just reinforcing it through the controller. That creates this extra dimension of tactility for a lot of our interactions. This can be for our narrative sequences where you're in first person, picking up items and feeling those nuances coming through the controller, or during combat or interacting with various devices.
In our core gameplay, we make use of the adaptive triggers as well. The way that it works is, if you press L2 half-way, you get traditional focus aim, and after that it actually clicks into place and activates the alt fire mode. This dual functionality on one button allows very intuitive access to these different aspects of the core moveset. It's very intuitive, it's a great addition to the core gameplay.
We have of course the SSD. The fast loading, in a game that's all about dying and respawning, and streaming a lot of highly varied content, it's proven invaluable in improving the overall quality of the experience. It minimises downtime and ensures players spend as much time as possible engaged in the action.
MH: To add to that, the planet itself may seem dark and dead at first, but in the end we have lots of flora there that not only reacts to Selene, but you have your guns and the fog — all these are dynamic elements that are catering to creating this sort of fluid environment. You also have the enemies with a lot of tentacles; that's one of our technologies that informs the player of when they're attacking, they have lots of tentacles that tell you when an enemy's gonna bounce at you.
These are all technical things that may not be apparent at first, but there's so much intricate movement, and even some destructible parts of the environment. These things add up and create a unique and living world that's really only possible on PS5.
Obviously we've been covering the game since it was announced last June. One concern we've noticed among our readers is with regards to value. It seems there's a disconnect between what people expect from Returnal — or from a Housemarque game — and its price point. Are you able to speak to that at all?
MH: We're able to speak to that to the extent that, clearly, this is a much larger endeavour than our previous portfolio. We're aware of this jump into the bigger space as well. So from our side, we're making [Housemarque's] biggest game ever, we're adding all these platform features — the 3D audio, the haptics. Everything really caters to a new type of experience that will let any player experience gaming in a fresh light. It's quite a new thing overall. So we're trying to fulfil the part of the value proposition that allows us to give the best, most replayable, and most engrossing experience to everybody out there.
Now, it is of course a new console generation and a next-gen title, so there's things that come along with that, but as long as we're fulfilling our part of it and making the best game possible, then we're doing our half of the value proposition in that regard.
Is there anything else you'd like to add before we wrap up?
MH: It's a deep, dark, beautiful, sci-fi rogue-like [with a] very interesting character and world. Hopefully you enjoy it! We postponed it to 30th April, but really excited to get it out soon.
Mikael said it — Returnal releases exclusively on PS5 at the end of April. A huge thank you to Harry and Mikael for taking the time to speak to us about Housemarque's latest title, and to Sony for making the interview possible. Are you looking forward to this one? Crash land in the comments section below.
oh dang i just hope to beat the scalpers to get a playstation 5 , i been a playstation gamer since the original console. i love me playstation! lol this game looks seriously awesome.
This feels a lot like something we would have gotten back on the PS1. I can't help but think of MDK when I see combat vids from this game.
I was on the fence, but I'm leaning more and more towards getting this at launch.
Excellent interview, too. More like this. (Yes, I'm only half way through it).
of course they are stressing value. They are charging a price for this game that warrants it.
However, what Sony and developers must realize, that the more hey continue to push game prices ever closer to the top quarter of a hundred bucks, the more often gamers will wait for reviews and pre-orders and day one purchases will tank.
This means developers better damn well make sure their games are polished and a quality game play experience.
The other consequences of this is another large influx of live service, profit based gaming endeavors.
I wish it were coming to PS4 as well.
£70 though? Should have priced it more reasonably because I'm gonna wait for it to hit ps plus now, or maybe a super deep sale.
You ***** up this one, Housemarque. And I say that as a big fan of your work.
Great interview!! This brings more context to the gameplay shown so far and has me genuinely excited to dive in!
It's either this for £70 (to be fair it can be found for £65) or RE Village for £45, no contest really. They must be secretly a little pi$$ed off with Sony for lumbering them with such a high price.
The price is going to kill this game.
I hate rogue games and I'm not a fan of bullet hell but damn is it a beautiful game so I'll buy it...one day...at half price
Really great interview, @Quintumply. Great to get so much insight from the team! Always been a big fan of Housemarque, so it's cool to see them get a shot at a project like this.
Just here to remind you lot that there is an actual game here to discuss (and an excellent interview), not just the price of it. The price will come down, the quality of Returnal will not.
Loving all the interviews on the site recently, Returnal looks excellent!
Hi there fellow gamers.
Awesome interview @Quintumply. Thanks!
Love to learn more about the game.
People really need to stop fussing about the games price and start focusing on the quality of the game itself.
And it seems bloody brilliant to me.
Housemarque has never disapointed me with their games, quite the opposite.
They were all super fun and addicting to play.
You always want to do another run because the gameplay mechanics are soooo good!
This is the type of brand new title that I purchased my PS5 for.
I can´t wait to play this and experience all the Dualsense goodness with this game.
Cheers, stay safe and happy gaming to us all
People saying the price isn't relevant or important:
If the game launched at £100 would it still be brilliant? What about if were £200? Still a great game and day one purchase?
Like it or not, the pricing of a game IS that important. It's not even a case of whether an individual can afford it or not....it's whether there is fair value in the purchase. Without this concept, we'd all go out and spend every last penny on anything and everything 'because price doesn't matter.'
Housemarque will learn this the hard way, however good the game may be.
@LiamCroft the quality is unknown. The price is in our face like a big, shiny tagger.
@RaZieLDaNtE Cant agree more ill buy it on release no question about it. Dont hear pushsquare talking about the value of the sportsgames full of MT and the thing that they are useless after a year.
@Loftimus And now think about how much effort Stephen put into this interview, for the comments section to be then inundated with posts of "I'm not buying this for £70". Believe me, it is incredibly frustrating to have so much of your work reduced to bickering about a pricepoint.
Imagine a Souls game except the map changed every time you died. Thats what this sounds like. And I already paid $70 for Demons Souls. Sounds like good value to me.
@LiamCroft dont get me wrong, it was a great interview and enjoyed the read. I also see it from Housemarque's point of view, they deserve as much as any dev for a top effort, but £70 is just too high for any game and it needs addressing.
@LiamCroft your entering some dangerous territory here. Why even have a comments section if you want to control what the community is allowed to discuss? Hate speech and abuse is one thing, but discussing the main factor into whether we're going to buy the game in question or not because it's overpriced is another. This is the perfect chance for us to express our feelings about the price hike to the devs and Sony.
@Old-Red I'm not trying to control what is discussed, there is no dangerous territory here. This topic of price has just gotten very, very boring to see discussed over and over again.
@LiamCroft so because you are one of the few that are fine with the price hike, everyone else should shut up about it?
@Flaming_Kaiser Hi there friend.
And Amen to that.
If people think that any CoD, a game that you can finish in 4 hours, maybe 5, is great value for money, than they are wrong.
Sure, theres multiplayer that makes the game last and you can play with friends.
But what happens when the servers go down?
Or are permanently shut down?
No more multiplayer and a 4 hour campaign game with no replay value whatsoever.
For the normal price tag.
I rest my case.
Cheers, stay safe and have a good one
@LiamCroft that maybe so, but this is one article we know 100% will be seen by the devs and possibly Sony. The pricing in EU/UK is wonky and they need to reconsider it.
My gut is telling me this game is going to be great fun, critically acclaimed, but is going to bomb.
I may pay 70 for it. I really don’t want too but depending on what I’m doing with other games at that time will be the determining factor. If this game was 40-50 I’d buy it without thinking about it but higher than that makes me pause.
This would be a day one purchase from me if I had a PS5. Price point is whatever, lack of people owning consoles for people to buy the game is what really sucks.
Great interview. I’m really starting to get hyped for this.
@Old-Red oh, believe me, the price is ludicrous for us in canada as well. with taxes, we're looking at just over $100CAD. i feel like i have been transported back to 1993 and looking at a snes cart of street fighter 2 at toys r us. at least that price was more justified due to the cart's chipset being the main reason some games commanded such a high price point. and this is not just about returnal but all ps5 games. it just stands out more with returnal due to the nature of the game being an arcade inspired rogelike that makes it even harder to swallow. that said, i have a feeling that prices will fall much faster this generation as sales are more likely not to meet expectations (due to the price point of course) and sony will have no choice but to permanently slash the price a month after release. they will learn from ths experience and make a new price tier going forward i hope.
@Porco the $70 price tag will become the norm you guys like it or not (all across the different publishers, not just Sony)..... you can wait for sales all you want, but that won't change that.
@rpg2000 not all AAA games necessarily fit that price point, though (due to the genre, length of the game or perceived value) and returnal is a prime example of this. it's not one size fits all. don't forget that ratchet and clank (ps4) did not launch at full price at the time so a tiered system should be used on ocassion. o yea, destruction all stars (ps5) was originally intended to release at full price and we all know how that worked out lol... this is a case of being out of touch with the market.
@LiamCroft 2 points here...1)i actually for once totally agree with you about price/quality..price will drop and quality will only increase with future updates etc. 2)i also agree that if an article is written and people's responses are about the high price point affecting their decisions on to buy or not to buy then you really shouldnt take to keyboard to give them a scalding..its a very important issue and one that is very close to gamers hearts..sonys high pricing needs addressing rapidly because its going to hurt them..
No one here has addressed the gameplay, which looks incredibly busy — hard to follow what is going on a lot of the time. Hard pass.
@RaZieLDaNtE Lets be fair original games dont sell people want the same crap every year. And then people complain why Sony is going mainstream if it does not sell why invests. ☹️
Its a bleak future.
Good interview, but this pushing of the game really makes it feel like they’re having a lack of pre orders! 80 euros is out of the question for this game and many others and Sony will feel it !!!
@Old-Red Exactly my chain of thought !! RE no doubt !!!
It really sounds great. However I've gone from day one buy to when it's good value buy because of Sony current tendency to reinvest the money they get into making PC ports to make even more easy money.
The gameplay looks great. And the production value of Housemarque games has always been good, but this is out of this world. It's on the first games that really look next-gen to me.
And I'm still so intrigued by the use of the DualSense. Can't wait to hear from actual impressions if that plays naturally or not.
@Quintumply Love the interview! Did an even better job of hyping up the game for me than yesterday's trailer.
@Loftimus you don´t get what is the point here... why do people write about the pricatags over and over again is the point and not the price itself. Lets go back and talk about the GAME. If you are not comfortable with the price, wait a month and there you go. Where is the problem? This is a PS exclusive title and we know that there are not so many PS5 consoles out atm. So who are you to complain about 10 bucks more because of that. Think about it.
@doctommaso it's pretty easy to follow once you get used to it. If you can play Resogun, you can play this.
Follow the White Shadow
This was a really great read, thank you! Seems like the team had a very focused vision of what they wanted to accomplish, a natural evolution for their brand of game. Everything I hear about this gets me more excited, can’t wait till I get to play it.
@LiamCroft I have bought every Housemarque game (and enjoyed them all) but the price point IS the issue, and not just with this game, but any game priced at £70, it's inching ever closer to £100 per game... and this is simply not acceptable, nor can it be stated that games are getting so advanced that they warrant such a price hike (a resolution increase here, and frame rate increase there) - and 3D audio has been around for years. As a gaming journalist maybe instead of being bored by the topic, maybe take it up and report about it, investigate it, it's clearly the main concern of all readers / consumers... it's a topic that needs to be constantly highlighted and taken to developers / publishers...
@sajoey Hmmm... encouraging words. Maybe still a chance for me to get into it.
Been a fan of Housemarque since the days of Super Stardust (wasn't that on the Amiga first?) and Dead Nation but those games were fairly cheap on the PSN and were great for a few hours play.
The review piques my interest - it certainly could be one of the few PS5 only games so far worthy of the jump given Housemarque's resume.
However, with a limited install base (< 5m) and that price there will be very few copies sold.
A few months down the line when it's dropped to about £40, people will buy it. Just hope they (and more importantly Sony) don't expect a big seller from the get-go.
I was already planning to buy it, but this new gameplay made me preorder it.
This is my most anticipated game.
Day one for me!
@OneManDroid mate games were 49.99 in 1993.
Was on fence about this, but actually it looks really good so might pick it up day one.
I'm not 100% sold at the moment, but it does look appealing after that gameplay, you can see the effort thats gone into this game.
Great interview and I'm excited to play the game. Unfortunately I'm not quite accustomed to paying £70 for an unproven concept yet so will be waiting for reviews and potential price drop.
@Flaming_Kaiser Wich is a dam shame.
What happen to gamers being excited for brand new titles on their new consoles?
New, different, similar and fantastic gaming experiences on new hardware?
Developers, creating this new worlds, new playgrounds for the players have fun and joy?
I think things like Game Pass is making people complacent to average because it makes some games cheaper.
If you don´t have enough money at the moment or you don´t know if the game is going to apeal to you, then, like I have said in a previous post, wait for a sale like so many of us have done before and will continue to do so.
Plain and simple.
Oh well, I for one, I´m super excited for this game.
Housemarque has never failed so far.
Cheers, stay safe and all the best
Game looks great and I intend to get it day one. I have no problem with price increases as they cost a lot more to produce now, but it should be level across the board. £70 is the same as $97, that's a big difference we all get the same game, same experience, should be the same price wherever you are.
I'm interested in seeing where they take the story. Having a Greek-American protagonist named after the goddess of the moon known for riding her chariot across the skies makes me wonder what other mythology they've incorporated. Nice choice on the planet name too. Atropos is one of the three Fates. The one who cuts mortal's life lines with a giant pair of scissors. Seems appropriate!
@JapaneseSonic it is. And there's indicators around your character to warn of incoming danger, kind of like in God of War 2018
My fellow Americans, fret not about price. Sign up for GameFly! Honestly I was shocked they were in business but they’re still kicking. This way, you can probably play it day 1 and just purchase it reduced price if you decide to.
I'm really happy to see this interview and it's exactly the kind of content I'd love to see here!
@LiamCroft To be fair, a lot of the concern about the price of this game was highlighted by PushSquare itself in past articles.
With regard to price, one thing people may be forgetting is that since the Brexit vote the value of the £ has dropped dramatically. Though your wages may be the same, global corporations will likely make price adjustments to account for the lost value. Not fair to the common person, but that's probably a significant factor.
Housemarque have earned my trust in the gameplay department and I am confident Returnal will deliver. They also have my trust in the power-up department. Though this is their first rogue-like, arcade games are basically rogue-likes in that you start anew each time. I wonder how they will do with regard to the story. I think tying the dynamics of a rogue-like with certain psychological concepts like repeating life mistakes could be interesting.
And, simply put, I'm excited to have a PS5 game that actually takes advantage of the hardware! Other than Demon's Souls this is the only other game that can reasonably make that claim. And new IPs are exciting! I've already played enough Assassin's Creed and Call of Duty to last a lifetime!
@willi3su I've also preordered it, looks great, already platted Demon Souls and have pre ordered Death loop and RE Village as well, Horizon forbidden west will be a day one buy too.
I'm going to echo so many others but I'm highly reluctant to spend £70 ($90+) on any game, let alone a rogue-like/lite no matter how good it appears.
I'll be keeping my eyes peeled for somewhere selling it at a more reasonable price after it launches.
I'll probably get this at launch, as I'm a big housemarque fan but for games to be a success people who buy a couple of games a year and see an advert on youtube or the side of a bus need to pick it up. I can't see many doing that at 70 quid
It's astonishing how cheap everyone is on here. Housemarque is a great company that deserves to be supported. Unless all you want are Call of Duty sequels this is exactly the game you support. It looks amazing. Secondly game prices have not gone up in 20 years despite tons of inflation. It is now more expensive than ever to make a game but your right Returnal should cost what a NES game did which was 50 bucks. I'm beginning to think it might be a British thing because people are not nearly this cheap on other sites! Lol!
The game looks decent and I hope it does well. The price is a factor for me but I'm not averse to paying out £70 for a game. Replayability is key, I enjoy shoot em ups and I imported Ketsui from Japan on release. Its a game which on the face of it can be completed very quickly, however to beat the game with a good score on higher difficulties requires mastery of epic proportions which has endless amounts of replayability, I have sunk over one hundred hours into it. The thing is, Ketsui is a genre defining game which for me is worth the cash, will Returnal be this genre defining game, it will have to be if I'm paying £70.
Great interview, you can notice how much effort and passion they put in this project. I might get this eventually, when it drops to $20 - $40.
There is a lot of this game that is appealing, but a lot that is not. Rogue-ish games generally hide their lack of content behind their reset mechanics. I'm not seeing the value prop he mentioned but we'll see when it gets reviewed.
@RaZieLDaNtE You get i dont play a lot of AC games why because the biggest upside is how long it is. I really liked Syndicate shows it best. If you cut out the filler put in all the story DLC then you have a great game not a game that fills your time. The best thing about the game was Evie Frye i have the last games but i just cant bring myself too start it up... ☹️ I cant wait too play Returnal but first lets get a PS5. 😄
@Flaming_Kaiser I was enjoying Sindicate a lot more than Unity, since the fighting mechanics were really good and I just love to use grappling hooks, but my game got buged in a pursuit mission, wich I have always hated, and I couldn´t progress in the game any more. I had both characters maxed out even.
And Evie Frye was awesome. A really good written character.
I´ve been a fan and have played all of the Assassin´s Creed games and the "old formula" needed to change.
That´s why I feel you should give AC Origins, my second favourite AC game, a chance.
It is actualy a very nice open world game, with some great set pieces and one of my favourite characters, Bayek of Siwa.
Having said that, I couldn´t get AC Odissey that much.
The map felt way to big and there was so much to do, it was kinda overwhelming to me.
I still want to try AC Valhalla, since I like the viking setting, but
I´m kinda on the fence. Probably gonna wait a few more months and wait for a sale when theres nothing going on.
Cheers, stay safe and all the best
@Xenomorph_79 I agree, and I generally enjoy HM’s games.
Their last game, Matterfall, was shockingly bad!
@RaZieLDaNtE Immortals Fenyx Rising (terrible name because it doesnt stick) is the one im playing now.
I love the style and if they let them drop monetization crap and all that stuff i need too collect add keep the best from AC not the controls i really dont think AC controls nice.
The free camera is great so at some times its and terrible at others. If i need too do a timed section its more of a battle against the camera then fun. I do love the parrying and attacking.
But im more a fan of the fixed character camera atleast with battling and precision platforming.
Stop the Ubisoft crap with monetization and the ridiculous amounts of hoarding less is more. Plus when i start the game i dont want a 10 minute check of content every time...
Returnal is interesting insofar as it feels like an indie game with access to a AAA budget. With that said, even if I had access to a PS5, I'd be hesitant to spend money on it. Not JUST because of the price, but because I've been very unimpressed with the Housemarque games I've played so far (Resogun and Dead Nation on PS4; Super Stardust Delta on Vita). Despite the clear regard Sony has for this developer, all of their games have lacked that something extra that really makes an experience stand out. Their games feel polished but hollow.
Well, regardless, it was an interesting interview.
@Flaming_Kaiser Imortals Fenix Rising(Bad name, Gods and Monsters much better)
Is an interesting one for me.
I still don´t like the art style and when I finally played the demo it felt kinda underwhelming. I though i was going to love it since it´s very similar to Breath of the Wild, but it just didn´t clicked with me.
It happens sometimes.
But yeah, microtransactions are the bane of my exixtence, especialy in rpgs.
It just does not make any sense at all.
But enjoy it my friend. As long as your having fun, that´s all that matters.
Cheers, stay safe and have a good week
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