Today, we have been very proud to debut our new story trailer for Returnal with you all and reveal more info concerning the game’s story before next month’s release. This PS5 exclusive combines explosive action, roguelike elements, and cinematic storytelling to make a dark, sci-fi action thriller.
Storytelling is really a big new feature to Housemarque games and we’ve a bold story to inform. Our goal with Returnal would be to tell a mysterious, layered, and haunting story that – like our explosive action gameplay and roguelike twists – is something you find, replay, and rethink on every play.
Our narrative direction and storytelling philosophy with Returnal is that the complete story shouldn’t compromise the gameplay. It should rationalise instead, deepen, and blend with it. We’ve touched upon the game’s combat systems already, so in today’s post I’ll shed more light on a few of Returnal’s mysteries and the challenges Selene faces from the narrative perspective . . First, ensure that you watch our Story trailer below.
1. An unauthorised recon mission gone wrong
Our story follows Selene, a Greek-American ASTRA deep space scout who’s a layered and complex character that’s driven to a fault, intelligent, and resourceful. For the very first time in her career she goes against orders to go to the alien planet Atropos to check out the “White Shadow” broadcast signal. Upon arrival she crash lands within an alien forest. Here the ruins are discovered by her of an alien civilisation filled up with statues, gates, xeno-tech, and alien corpses. But she’s not by yourself. The planet’s surface is teeming with hostile creatures that attack Selene on sight, along with other threats left by the world’s former inhabitants
Across Atropos everything is hostile, mysterious or alien, leaving Selene to be among our sole human elements. So that it was very important to us our lead was a compelling, complex character that players would root for and desire to understand better. I’m very happy to talk about that Selene is voiced in a raw and grounded performance by Jane Perry (recently Diana Burnwood in the Hitman Trilogy), while her visual appearance and facial capture is conducted by Anne Beyer.
We wanted Selene’s suit to stay stark contrast to the dark and outlandish world she’s stuck in. Bright and clean design is really a canvas showing on her behalf journey, and enables you to track her movement in both dark bullet and environments hell combat.
The ASTRA Scout Suit can be an impressive little bit of technology nonetheless it will not make Selene impervious to damage, nor do the fighting on her behalf. We didn’t want the ball player to feel safe in a suit of armour but survive through skill and fast thinking.
2. The way the world changes to challenge you
During her first scout, Selene scans xeno-tech, defends herself and finds useful resources, but eventually she succumbs to sun and rain and dies and then reawaken again in her ship’s cockpit moments prior to the crash. On leaving the crash site, she discovers the global world has changed its layouts, making her journey to the “White Shadow” signal different on every cycle and rebirth. It’s an endless cycle where death is not any escape even.
With Selene, players uncover this mystery and also have to fight through the hostile creatures together, traps, hazards, and much more hostile components of Atropos. This is a story you need to piece with Selene and interpret through our environments together, sound design and pure story elements. We show a few of these environments inside our story trailer and there’s a lot more unique environments and creatures to explore, understand, and overcome during Returnal.
Each environment is really a special location which has new creatures to come across, more story to find plus much more. As possible plainly see from the trailer, the Overgrown Ruins is really a maze-like oppressive forest, filled up with the remnants of the alien civilization that rearranges such as a puzzle on every cycle,. Compared, the Crimson Wastes can be an open red desert with new hostile story and threats layers to discover.
Every location on Atropos shuffles and changes on each rebirth and death, giving players and Selene a fresh challenge with every replay. Fortunately Selene is quite resourceful and will utilise the xeno-tech to get shortcuts, while making permanent progress because of certain items which withstand the cycle. Other items allow her to fight longer and harder with every cycle also.
3. Relive other cycles that aren’t your personal
Throughout your journey through Atropos you find the story of the alien civilization by way of a group of holographic statues, which are called Xeno-archives, and the disturbed writings entirely on Xenoglyphs, which tell exactly the same story from another true viewpoint. Xeno-archives are visual that require to be deciphered purely, whereas Xenoglyphs are need and written to be translated via language samples collected across Atropos. This is a new solution to tell a tale and we’re very excited for players to attempt to uncover the mysteries of the alien civilization.
As shown inside our trailer, Selene discovers her very own scout corpses across Atropos also. These corpses can feature projections of other players’ deaths (via our online systems), or Scout Audio Logs which are left out by other versions of Selene, that she cannot remember recording. The projections show other players deaths in Returnal, towards the end of which it is possible to opt to scavenge the remains for items or revenge their death, triggering events which are discovered once you play best. Story content from audio logs is handcrafted storytelling, whereas the projections are created via other players’ deaths and found across all the environments in Returnal.
4. Uncover a deeper mystery in first-person
Lastly, as you seen in our trailer, Selene discovers a mysterious house that’s strangely familiar also. Returnal is really a third-person action experience primarily, but Selene and players may also elect to go inside this house on Atropos in atmospheric first-person story sequences where she confronts strange and familiar events inside you need to piece together…
So Returnal isn’t a sci-fi action action thriller and roguelike just. We’ve a bold also, dark cinematic story to tell. This is a mystery to decipher and replay, like our gameplay mechanics come every cycle. For me it’s a story about self-discovery, progress and breaking the cycles we put ourselves in.
on April 30
Thanks for reading and we can’t await you all to play Returnal.
Stay well and all remain safe!
Find out more about Returnal
By PlayStation Official blog (blog.playstation.com)