Is Returnal Worth Paying $70 For Video Games | Screen Rant
Built for the new generation of console hardware, Returnal also comes with the next-gen price tag. Does the PS5 exclusive justify the higher price?
The new console generation is fully underway with titles like Returnal coming exclusively to the new hardware. The third-person shooter roguelike with horror elements from developer Housemarque looks and plays very smooth. Ray tracing creates a convincing ambiance and PS5's DualSense controller really adds to the immersion of the alien planet Atropos. The game has come under some scrutiny since release for its difficulty and lack of regular saves, but there's no denying that it's certainly a poster-child for "next-gen."
Still, a broader question remains when entering the new console generation: are new video games worth $70? The new consoles like PS5 brought with them a $10 increase in game prices (before tax, of course), and many gamers are now wary of buying brand new titles for fear of not getting their money's worth. For some, the price is not worth it regardless of how good the game is, claiming $60 was already steep enough. The debate will no doubt continue as the industry adjusts to the new price point, but how does Returnal stack up to its monetary valuation?
The answer to this question - just like for most games - is: It depends on the player. Everyone likes different games, and everyone has a personal value attributed to the dollar. Although Returnal has had some pretty serious bugs, it's tough to argue the game is not high quality. If critical reception has any sway in the decision to purchase, it's worth noting that the game has received mostly favorable reviews, especially for its fascinating narrative and responsive combat.
Returnal is certainly not for everyone. On the whole, the game is quite unforgiving, and Returnal's punishing difficulty will be the biggest factor in turning away potential customers. As a roguelike, the game is designed to make dying a severe setback. New players may easily get frustrated and wish they hadn't spent $70 on a game that has very little sense of progression. On the other hand, though, the difficulty might be alluring for some. Fans of notoriously difficult games like Cuphead or even the faster Soulsbornes such as Bloodborne and Sekiro might get satisfaction out of learning enemy attack patterns and weaknesses.
At its core, Returnal is a three-dimensional bullet hell game. There is often a lot happening on screen and quick reflexes are required. There are lulls in the action, but the combat itself is frantic and stressful, which may not appeal to many PS5 owners. Overall, Returnal looks and plays the part of a full-price, next-gen AAA title, and the presentation is matched by an equally compelling story. The only caveat is the potentially off-putting gameplay, which largely comes down to personal preference, but those who enjoy it will find it very much worth the price of admittance.
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