‘Returnal’ director describes “leap of faith” development

Written by on 27/03/2022


Returnal’s director at developer Housemarque has reflected on the challenges and difficulties faced when creating the PS5 game.

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Director Harry Krueger did a recent talk at GDC 2022 (via IGN), reflecting on the year-old roguelike.

“It was really just adapting all the time, and that was a real challenge as well. Everyone was underestimating the complexity of the project,” said Krueger.

The development of Returnal was also described as a “leap of faith” where the team had to “build our wings while falling,” due in part to it being Housemarque’s first 3D game.

Returnal. Credit: Housemarque

“We were trying to make a 3D game feel as simple as a 2D game, and that was never going to happen. I think that’s why the game feels very hard for players, because trying to shoot and do anything else at the same time is incredibly demanding. And that’s why you end falling off ledges and getting killed by cheapshots because you spent all of your time trying to shoot enemies.”

When the game was released last year, it was met with critical success, and the NME review awarded Returnal five out of five stars, saying the “wonderfully weird release sticks out less like a sore thumb and more like a defiant middle finger.”

Despite the difficulties in development, Krueger adds in his GDC talk that the team was able to work together and “punch way above their weight” and that collaboration with Sony “went really smoothly.”

Returnal’s newest DLC was also released recently. Called Ascension, the free update adds online co-op and a new endless mode called Tower of Sisyphus.

In other news, the next-generation upgrades for three Resident Evil games have been confirmed to not launch with physical releases later this year.

The post ‘Returnal’ director describes “leap of faith” development appeared first on NME.

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