top of page

Returnal PC Review

Initial release date: April 30, 2021

PC Release: February 15, 2023

Developers: Housemarque, Climax Studios

Engine: Unreal Engine 5, Unreal Engine 4

Composer: The Haxan Cloak

Platforms: PlayStation 5, Microsoft Windows

Awards: BAFTA Games Award for Best Game, MORE

"Review Code Provided By PlayStation"

Housemarque, a game development company, demonstrated a remarkable evolution of their classic arcade-style gameplay in the third-person action adventure genre with Returnal, which was released on the PS5 console in April 2021. This game also incorporated innovative elements of the roguelike formula, which impressed us greatly.

The highly anticipated release of Returnal on PC is a reason for celebration. Not only does it present the PS5 Game of the Year contender in all its magnificence, but it also offers the typical array of exclusive PC technical features, which is a consistent hallmark of PlayStation Studios' efforts to bring their PS4 and PS5 games to the PC platform. In simple terms, Returnal on PC upholds PlayStation Studios' exceptional reputation for going the extra mile with their PC ports, and I am extremely satisfied.

To start with, Returnal remains a crucial addition to the third-person shooter genre that everyone should try out. Players assume the role of Selene, a tough space explorer who is stranded on the mysterious planet Atropos, where she must venture into the wild armed with a weapon to locate a puzzling signal that has been transmitting continuously since her arrival. However, Selene finds herself caught in a time loop where she reawakens at the wreckage of her spacecraft every time she dies, but with memories of her previous life intact. Moreover, the planet of Atropos also contributes to this feature by altering its layout every time Selene restarts her journey, a fundamental aspect of the game's roguelike design that complements its responsive third-person arcade shooter gameplay. In summary, Returnal is a one-of-a-kind adventure that retains its uniqueness even after making the transition from PS5 to PC.

Returnal on PC offers several technical enhancements that were not present in the PS5 version. Firstly, it provides stunning lighting, shadows, and reflections through high-quality ray-tracing visual presets, alongside 4K resolution. Additionally, PC users can take advantage of performance-boosting technologies such as AMD FSR 2.0, NVIDIA NIS, and NVIDIA DLSS, which allow the game to run smoothly at over 60 FPS, making it more responsive and enjoyable to play. Returnal on PC also includes several neat technical features, including an FPS counter, CPU and GPU usage gauges, and a latency tracker. These updates demonstrate that the developers have the same dedication and commitment to their PC player base as they do for PlayStation gamers.

On the Steam Deck, the game runs into a few hiccups here and there. It for the most part, runs at 30fps but will dip below that to mid 20s while the menus run at 60fps. Is it playable on Deck? Yes but its no where near as bad as all these Steam Deck creators make it out to be.

Moreover, being a PlayStation Studios project, Returnal fully supports 3D audio and the DualSense controller, providing PC players with the same haptic feedback and adaptive trigger functionality enjoyed by PS5 owners. In summary, Returnal continues the trend of PlayStation Studios delivering outstanding PC ports and showcasing a host of technical advancements that make the most of the increased technical capabilities of the PC platform. The quick release of a patch to address visual, performance, and crashing issues demonstrates their commitment to providing an excellent gaming experience.

It's great to see that Returnal on PC includes all of the post-release content that enhanced the PS5 version, such as the Tower of Sisyphus and the Suspend Cycle function. Additionally, the game also features a Photo Mode and a variety of visual presets and tweakables that allow players to tailor the game to run on a variety of PC rigs. However, it's worth noting that to get the most out of all of the visual enhancements in the PC version, a substantially powerful setup is required. Overall, Returnal remains an outstanding third-person shooter that has been masterfully blended with roguelike design, and its transition to PC has been executed with great care and attention to detail. The fact that PlayStation Studios has consistently provided PC gamers with excellent ports is a testament to their commitment to delivering high-quality gaming experiences across multiple platforms.

#ReturnalPC #Returnal

Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
No tags yet.
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page