Would it be a push to call A Plague Tale: Innocence an overlooked gem? We don't think so; what Asobo Studio achieved on PlayStation 4 deserved a lot more recognition. The somewhat historical tale of Amicia and younger brother Hugo can hold its own amongst many of the greats, and while its stealth-based gameplay may prove formulaic for some, the 10-hour undertaking is a special one when taken as a whole. Let's hope then this upgraded PS5 version can be the game's true coming-out party.
Under the hood, a rock-solid 60 frames-per-second coupled with a 1440p resolution (technical analysis reveals it's not actually 4K) makes for a better playing game than the original 2019 launch. The glow up is particularly noticeable in the faces of character models and many of the more colourful locations, with some beautifully lit environments that really pop under the heat of the French sun. Contrasting them are the hauntingly dark sequences through whatever the gigantic rat horde had to munch on for its breakfast. It's every bit as dire yet captivating as The Last of Us.
Where the PS5 version excels further is its use of the DualSense controller, especially when you're on the run. Holding R2 sends Amicia into a sprint, and the trigger replicates the action by gently applying pressure in turn with her footsteps. A subtle but effective use that heightens chase sequences. Haptic feedback joins the party whenever the sling is needed, simulating the motion of rope swings just before the rock it holds is unleashed onto a member of the Inquisition. Without going overboard, the game is elevated with clever uses we hope future titles take notice of.
Gameplay is unchanged, retaining the linear nature that guides you through a crafted campaign full of surprises and standout sequences. The English army of 1348 and rodent infantry burrowing underground create environmental puzzles with inventive solutions while combat is almost always a life or death situation. Miss your shot and doom is likely right around the corner. But so too is one of the most underrated experiences of the past few years. A Plague Tale: Innocence has always been a great game. PS5 makes it that little bit better.