Some tips for beginners and those looking to see the end. Here is a guide on how to play Returnal and not suffer.
On the eve of Labor Day, Returnal came out – apparently with the aim of getting PlayStation 5 owners to work hard. The game turned out to be more complicated than typical Sony exclusives, so an unprepared player may be “pleasantly” surprised by what awaits him after the first act.
Since I had the opportunity to complete the game before the release (okay, I only completed the game on the day of release), I want to share a few observations and tricks that will help players suffer less and see the end of the story.
The most important tip for those who decided to go through the game to the end is point 8. It describes how to collect and get everything you need to advance through the story in the third act.
1. Don’t Relax
I’ll spoil the surprise: at the beginning, Returnal is shy and doesn’t show his true essence. The first three biomes (night jungle, desert, citadel) are noticeably lighter than the next three (daytime jungle, glacier and underwater temple). Therefore, do not think that you are the king of the world when you see the first ending and kill the first three bosses – after that, the difficulty will increase dramatically.
By the way, there are 6 biomes in the game, and 5 bosses – the glacier did not have a “leader”.
2. Take your time
As it has been repeatedly noted in all kinds of reviews, do not rush to the boss at breakneck speed. Unfortunately, after each death, you will have to spend time trying to increase your health again, collect artifacts and find a decent weapon. Go to each additional room (read on how to enter the “hut” correctly) and hope for the best.
Remember that the passages to the main locations on the map are marked as P and the additional ones as L. The former will lead you to bosses and portals to other biomes, and the latter to wealth and glory.
3. Be calm but fast
Continuing from the previous point, the basis of playing various bullet hell and other hardcore games is calmness. Don’t panic and beat the keys. Slightly slow down the tempo of the brain – much more harm from haste.
At the same time, the basis of survival in Returnal lies in the same place as the basis of life – in movement. In battle, you cannot stop for a second: neither when shooting, nor when picking up items, nor when planning a route.
If you don’t shoot, be sure to sprint. It is better to shoot from the hip, because when aiming, Selena moves even slower.
There is no need to release the trigger at all – almost all weapons in Returnal with R2 constantly held down work better than with individual presses. It will also help with fast recharging since this approach will not accidentally lock it up.
4. Parasites are not your friends
This point is controversial, but it seems to me that parasites do more harm than good. Most of their bonuses duplicate the effects of artifacts, so think three times before using them.
However, some of the effects are really useful – the increase in maximum health and its automatic recovery is worth sacrificing, for example, the speed of the adrenaline bar gain.
5. Don’t go too deep
Some locations are locked until all enemies are destroyed. This happens after the player has walked more than a few meters across the arena. In Returnal, there is no random generation, the opponents also often appear the same, so you will quickly remember most of the situations. Think three times – do you need to enter this arena now (or ever) if a fat mini-boss is waiting there?
The same goes for the secret rooms into which Selena falls from above. In one of their varieties, the player is immediately attacked by a strong enemy, but nothing prevents him from jumping into the teleport behind his back, without entering into confrontation.
You can assess the situation immediately after opening the doors by looking at the area. If you see a strong enemy slowly appearing in the arena (from the red portal), think about turning around and leaving.
6. Make use of the second chance
Despite its roguelite nature, Returnal sometimes offers multiple second chances. Firstly, the items “astronaut figurine” and “children’s wrist watches” will help with this. Thanks to them, you can resurrect with full health in the same place where they died. In the pre-release version, the astronaut was sold everywhere – in almost every fabricator it could be purchased for 300 morons. In the patch of the first day, the developers changed the balance, so now it is quite difficult to find it.
Secondly, there is a special device that creates your copy for 6 ethers. You need to use it in those locations in which you are going to spend the most time in this race. For example, you plan to farm well in the Deep Scar, and it will be unwise to spend a resource in the jungle because when you change the biome, the device stops working.
7. A few tips for trophy chanters
At the moment, Returnal is in mediocre technical condition. Excluding various bugs, let’s talk about achievements. It seems like everything can be buggy – but many trophies can be fixed. For example, trophies for bosses. By the way, I didn’t get a trophy for Hyperion – if this or something like that happened, just go and go through it again.
PowerPyx also recommends playing with the Internet turned on so that the game will correctly track progress. The developers decided to rely on the PS5 functionality, and accounting is carried out through activity cards. On them you can see how many certain actions you need to perform in each biome in order to get a gold trophy for it. There are 6 of them, like biomes.
Also, in the guide of the same PowerPyx, you can see when and where he recommends making backups of saves – in short, more often.
8. What to do in the third act?
Completed Act II of Returnal and don’t know what to do? Is the plot not moving in Returnal? Lost goals? Yes, the developers decided to play old school and not directly tell what needs to be done to see the last scene in the house.
After completing the second act, free exploration begins – players are free to move back to the night version of the jungle and replay the first three locations. To do this, you need to return to Helios and go to the device in the back room.
Each of the 6 biomes contains 1 piece of the amulet shown in the screenshot above. Your task is to comb all the locations and find them – they can appear both in the additional and in the main rooms. For example, in the Broken Wastes, part of the amulet is in the middle of a large arena that resembles an amphitheater, and in the Ancient Citadel I have it under water in one of the corridors.
Only 1 piece can be collected in one run. After you have found her, feel free to restart the cycle and go to the next location.
After that, all that remains is to visit the house and watch the last scene in it, and then re-kill the boss in the Deep Scar and open the car door. Everything, Returnal is completed, you are delicious.
No matter how many more tips I have found, they may turn out to be too subjective or simply useless. Most importantly, take care of your physical and psychological health. The game is very bright and flickering elements are often found in it – if you or your relatives suffer from epilepsy, be extremely vigilant. Also, don’t let negative emotions get the better of you when you fall into the abyss for the 10th time.