Housemarque’s arcade-inspired roguelite shooter Returnal is set to release next month, and a new story trailer shows how it offers a more cerebral and personal tale than many of the studio’s previous games.
The trailer wastes no time getting us into actual gameplay, with protagonist Selene crash-landing on an alien planet and venturing into the unknown. Quickly, she discovers one person she does know–herself, or rather her corpse. Her previous self’s death is seen replaying in her suit’s cracked face mask.
But how could she be lying on the ground, dead, when Selene is alive and well? It’s this narrative wrinkle at the heart of Returnal, which uses it as its explanation for the roguelite elements that permeate the game. Die, and you’ll keep some progression, like unlocked abilities, but you’ll also be starting over in terms of equipment and resources.
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