• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.
  • The Politics forum has been nuked. Please do not bring political discussion to the rest of the site, or you will be removed. Thanks.

Returnal Review Thread (PS5)

DonJorginho

Banned
Jan 22, 2020
4,059
12,678
770
Kanye's Kitchen


REVIEW EMBARGO LIFTED!


Will update the thread as we go!

METACRITIC: 86
OPENCRITIC: 86 (88% Critics Recommend!)

GAMESPEW (10/10)
Playing Returnal, it feels like next-gen has truly begun. The way it seamlessly moves from third-person to first-person; how you move from biome to biome without loading screens taking you out of the action; the DualSense implementation; the fluidity of the gameplay; the phenomenal visuals and audio; all of these elements, and more, come together to create an experience that is truly like no other. This is not only Housemarque's best game to date, but perhaps also the best game currently available on PS5. It's a genre-defying delight that raises the bar on so many levels. If you own a PS5 you need to play Returnal. It's as simple as that.

GAME INFORMER (9.5/10)
Returnal is a relentless nightmare that’s a dream to play. The journey is full of horror and terrible discoveries, but also unbridled curiosity and wonder. If you have the taste for it, this is an adventure that begs to be experienced.

PLAYSTATION LIFESTYLE (10/10)
Returnal is an essential PS5 title, now and throughout the console’s life. Housemarque took the rogue-like bullet-hell formula and applied it to a AAA experience in a way that creates something exceptionally unique yet wholly familiar. Returnal is an engaging experience in narrative, gameplay, and player discovery, consistently surprising on every level. Utilizing the PS5 technology in a way that most other developers are barely tapping into, Returnal feels like one of the first truly next-gen experiences, letting Housemarque set the stage for the new console. And like Housemarque games before it, it’s the kind of game that will withstand the test of time, begging for additional cycles well into the future.

GAMEREVOLUTION (9.5/10)
As it did with the PS3, Vita, and PS4, Housemarque has once again provided Sony with another launch-era hit and in doing so has created a rewarding, replayable, and revolutionary game that’s hopefully the foundation for other future AAA titles that are as clever with the roguelite blueprint.

CRITICALHIT (90/100)
Returnal is an unrelenting and unforgiving challenge for the ages, but it still captures the magic of what makes Housemarque so special. It has a weirdly unique style and substance, every level is an unpredictable white-knuckle ride and it fully commits to its rogue-like influences. The end result isn’t just a showcase title for what the PS5 is capable of, it’s a thrilling mix of arcade bullet-hell gaming with precision thrill power.

PLAYSTATION TROPHIES (91/100)
Even once the credits roll, after 20-25 hours, there’s plenty more to discover on the hostile world of Atropos. More mysteries, more secrets, more weapons, more data logs - and I was more than ready to jump straight back in. Developer Housemarque has achieved a seemingly impossible task, balancing fast-paced action with a slow-burn story and an incredible atmosphere, and done so with a flourish, at that. Returnal is an utterly essential addition to the PlayStation 5 library; a game that will creep and crawl and whisper its way into your brain, staying with you long after you’ve put down the controller, dragging you back for more, again, and again, and again.

WCCFTECH (9.3/10)

GAMESPOT (9/10)

Returnal is constantly unsettling and consistently challenging. Its mysterious story and demanding action feel intense, urgent, and fresh. The fast-moving combat manages to appear incredibly daunting, bordering on overwhelming, without ever actually becoming insurmountable. Every moment is a rush, either because you just barely evaded a giant purple laser or because you have no idea why there's an Apollo-era astronaut following your every move. Do you need to be a little brave to play Returnal? Yeah. Do you need to be glutton for punishment? It helps. They say that anything worth doing should scare you at least a little bit. I'm not sure if that's always true, but Returnal makes a strong case.

METRO UK (9/10)
What we would say though is that Returnal is by far the most fun we’ve had with a video game all year. Despite being a new IP it doesn’t always feel entirely original, given how liberally it borrows ideas from other games, but even when Lady Luck abandoned us we were always quick to get back up and try again. The action is perfectly crafted but the way it interfaces with the exploration and story aspects is just as impressive, as it creates an endlessly entertaining experience that we’d be playing again and again even if there was no time loop.

PUSH SQUARE (9/10)
Housemarque has delivered the PS5 promise with Returnal. All the console's bells and whistles enhance the experience, making this a real showpiece for the hardware. But more than that, the game is a force to be reckoned with; the breathless combat, super slick gameplay, and the subtle but unsettling story combine for an experience of surprising scale. Rogue-lite aspects mean it won't gel with everyone, but for those looking for a challenging, addictive arcade shooter, this comes highly recommended.

EUROGAMER (Recommended)
In Returnal, Housemarque builds a game on both euphoric highs and confounding lows.

SPIEL TIMES (9/10)
I have no doubt that many will buy “Returnal” without understanding how punishing its combat difficulty and permadeath system can be, how relentlessly it demands your full attention, how little respite it offers. But for those players who decide to stick through that baptism of fire, they’ll be rewarded by the cascading layers of interlocking systems that make success feel so cathartic. When it clicks, it’s unlike anything else I’ve played

IGN (8/10)
It's roguelike runs are too long and it needs a way to save in the middle of them, but Returnal's third-person shooter action, clever story, and atmosphere are excellent.


FEXTRALIFE (9.3/10)
Returnal was neither a game I was looking forward to, or knew too much about before playing this past week. I’m generally not a fan of rogue-like games, but Returnal has changed my perspective completely. And, while I enjoyed Hades immensely “for a rogue-like game”, I simply enjoyed Returnal. Full Stop.


VENTUREBEAT - Jeff Grubb (6/10)
My low point with Returnal came as I was struggling to get through the second biome. The monotony of the runs was getting to me, and I would’ve put the game down if I wasn’t reviewing it. Eventually, however, I did get a strong build from the first biome, and that made the second level much easier.

[The difficulty] is not a fatal flaw. But it is one that I think turns significant chunks of Returnal into a slog. And that reduces what is otherwise a great game into one that I merely like.

PC MAG (No Score - Review In Progress)
Returnal expertly weaves shoot 'em up and Metroidvania mechanics into its base, roguelike gameplay. Though its tight controls, visual fidelity, and intriguing story may entice you to play, the game's almost insurmountable difficulty will certainly alienate a portion of its intended audience.
 
Last edited:
x1
Jan 30, 2019
394
474
285
From one stupid article I read the game is quite challenging, which is fine by me. As long as the gameplay loop is really enjoyable, I’m all for it.
was it polygon lol? i watched a skillup hands on and he said it wasnt very difficult but was still engaging and fun. mentioned only died twice on the first biome but was expecting it to likely get more difficult as he went on. we'll see i guess.
 

Golgo 13

The Man With The Golden Dong
Jun 14, 2014
5,205
3,501
915
was it polygon lol? i watched a skillup hands on and he said it wasnt very difficult but was still engaging and fun. mentioned only died twice on the first biome but was expecting it to likely get more difficult as he went on. we'll see i guess.
Nah it was some stupid article that came up on my newsfeed, from a “nobody” site, claiming the game was harder than Demon’s Souls, etc. I seriously shouldn’t have given them the click.
 

skit_data

Member
Nov 3, 2020
1,661
4,149
385
9.3 from another one as well, it looks like

edit: edited out of respect for the publisher
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Bo_Hazem

NewChoppa

Member
May 10, 2020
210
678
380
I need this game injected into my veins ASAP


The way how positive pretty much all the previews are, I think we’re probably seeing an MC score above 86 at the very least. Maybe even a low 90 score?
 

Bo_Hazem

Gold Dealer
Feb 10, 2020
16,861
78,531
965
35
Salalah, Oman


REVIEW EMBARGO LIFTS ON THURSDAY 29th APRIL AT 05:00 PT, 08:00 ET, and 13:00 BST.


Will update the thread as we go!

METACRITIC: N/A
OPENCRITIC: N/A


(ONE REVIEW REMOVED TO NOT CAUSE LEGAL ISSUES FOR THE PUBLICATION, WILL REPOST IT AFTER OFFICIAL EMBARGO LIFTS, WAS A 9.3/10)

FEXTRALIFE (9.3/10)


Wow, first one at 93! Good start.
 

kyoji

Member
Jun 17, 2015
773
2,485
640
welp boys see you sometime friday evening or saturday, im going media/radio silence on this from here on out! I got the game coming in from amazon sometime on friday but i probably should have just downloaded it! Hopefully im in the morning delivery cycle.
 

RedWhiteBlue

Banned
Jul 5, 2019
244
500
285
looks amazing. i usually agree with wccftech reviews so that's a great sign. I hate this price hike though. $70 is tough to accept imo.

Yeah, for me these prices probably mean I will buy less games. Or will wait for sale more often.

For this I am OK since it's only the second real PS5 exclusive but I don't see myself buying too many games at this price point.