The Returnal launch trailer is to die for, so you can watch it again

If you’re a proud owner of a PlayStation 5, you might have stumbled upon this game called Returnal. Since the launch of this Housemarque game is almost upon us, PlayStation feels like there’s something we need to see. That thing is the Returnal launch trailer, showing us what to expect. The short answer is hell. Bullet hell to be exact. And believe me, I know. I’ve been going through all layers of it myself while playing it last week.

In case you really haven’t got a clue what Returnal is, let me try to explain it briefly. Returnal is a third-person bullet hell roguelite sci-fi shooter in which Selene – the game’s protagonist – seems to be stuck in a perpetual loop. After responding to a distress call from the planet Atropos, she parks her vehicle rather roughly in a non-designated area. In other words, she crashes. It doesn’t take her very long to figure out that this isn’t her first rodeo on Atropos, as she stumbles across multiple corpses of herself. So if leaving by space ship isn’t an option anymore and dying also won’t end her suffering, what’s left to do? It’ll take you a multitude of attempts to figure that out for yourself.

Having had the opportunity to play it for a little over a week now, I can assure you that you’ll have your work cut out for you with Returnal. Every failed attempt to reach the end sets you back to the very beginning, where you’re stripped of almost everything but your sidearm. To make it even more interesting, the environment keeps changing with every cycle. Rushing towards your goals because you already know where all the hostile alien lifeforms are, ain’t gonna happen. As if dodging thousands of flashy neon-like projectiles isn’t hard enough as it is.

Even though Returnal is Housemarque’s first big AAA game, it still carries the true Housemarque DNA that we’ve seen in previous, more arcade-style games of the Finnish studio. Games like Matterfall and Resogun have already taught us how to dodge and weave through barrages of flashy bullets. Only this time around, we get to do it in a third-person, Alien/Prometheus-like setting. There’s even a few disturbing first-person scenes, where we get to go through Selene’s stuff in her house, which is weirdly enough replicated on Atropos. If you think that’s mindboggling, you’d better get prepared.

Returnal will launch (and hopefully won’t crash) on April 30, exclusively on PlayStation 5. I’ll try to get a review on here ASAP if I ever make it to the end…