If you have already had the opportunity to play Returnal you have probably seen that it is far from an easy game, but its devilish action actually has trick and, from the hand of several advice, it sure is much easier for you. Here goes one guide with 21 things I would have liked to know before starting it.
Always in movement
Stop at Returnal it’s like painting Selene’s helmet with a bullseye. By abandoning the classic aerial view of this style of roguelikes, the possibility of being attacked from the back grows several integers and not having eyes on the back of the neck does not help. Stay always in movement to avoid being an easy target.
Attentive to the structure of rooms
Over time you will begin to see repeated patterns and rooms that, far from being a tedium, ends up being a great help. Try to memorize in which points of that style of rooms there are consumables that interest you or which hiding places keep chests or a secret room that may be of interest to you. Go through the halls knowing what and what not to do speed up each run a lot and improve your chances.
Break it all
Very in line with the above. Especially in the first biomes you will find objects scattered on the ground that you can break. Break it. Break it all. Over time you will see that certain rooms do not hide anything but there are others that save life and multiple objects inside.
Don’t worry about what you can’t reach
In your passage through the different biomes you will often find inaccessible places or elements with which it seems that you can interact but do not know how. Do not be overwhelmed, they are part of the improvements that you will get as you progress and, in the purest style metroidvania, later you can return to them to take advantage of them and get new prizes.
Attentive to the doors
Understand how the map works Returnal it is one of your first goals. The blue doors are usually dead ends that lead you to a prize or manufacturer, the white doors are the ones that make you advance across the map towards your final objective, the yellow ones with a star hide a horde-style challenge and many prizes if you manage to survive The ones with a circle on top are the door to a new biome, and the red ones are the ones that lead you to the last section of a biome and its corresponding boss. Don’t be afraid of any of them and try to go through them all.
The bars are not one of them
Of course, do not do the canelo as I did and think that the bars that are throughout the game are an inaccessible jail. Actually all you have to do is activate the switch which is near that cage, a kind of pyramid with a light that, once fired, will open the door so you can get what is inside.
If for some reason the game chokes you and you think you can’t move on, don’t despair. A good option may be to focus on improve your character based on the prizes that you can get in chests or scattered on the ground.
While they are not maintained from game to game, everything you unlock with ether on the pillar next to your ship will appear in subsequent games, and I assure you that there are very useful artifacts waiting to be unlocked.
Something similar to the above occurs with weapons, which also improve their powers as you use them and each time you will feel more comfortable with them and you will appreciate that they work better.
The key is to find the ones that best suit your style of play and make the most of them. Do not run away from the fighting, because even if you lose it will mean that your favorite weapon will still be better during the next game.
Spend your obolitos
The yellow stones that you collect around and that enemies also drop are the closest thing to a coin in the game. It will not take long to start valuing them as such and, although it is best to save it as gold on cloth for the really important improvements (10% additional weapon damage and 25% more health), you don’t want to be the richest in the graveyard either. When you die, absolutely everything will disappear, so if it can be the difference between living or dying, you better start loosening the paste.
Spend on artifacts, not consumables
Although you have to spend to avoid wasting hundreds of obolites in each run, try to take advantage of them for artifacts or improvements that can expand your survival conditions (always go for the astronaut without hesitation).
Don’t waste them on healing items Unless you’re about to face a boss or a challenge room that can put you on the ropes. Remember, if you have to throw healing items, you are doing something wrong, either by not dodging as you should or by facing problems greater than your life bar.
Don’t waste ether
Another of the currencies in the game is the ether, small pieces that you can spend at different times but that you should reserve only and exclusively for two things: the possibility of reappear after a death without restarting the loop (6 ether) and unlocking new artifacts and items on the pillar of the starting room with the ship. My advice is that you always save them for the reboot chamber (it does not work when changing biome) and then spend whatever you have left over on the next respawn.
Parasites are more useful than you think
After several attempts, I managed to pass the game thanks to a parasite that did not allow me to collect life but healed me every time I killed an enemy. This, which completely changed the experience of Returnalis just proof of how useful parasites can be.
Read their characteristics well and take advantage of them as long as they include debuffs that are easy to dodge, such as higher fall damage or worse curses.
Curses only at the beginning
Speaking of the king of Rome, watch out for the curses caused by infected chests, objects or obolite mines. Although there is no problem in playing it during the first bars, doing it when you have the game sufficiently advanced can end in serious problems such as the life bar reduced by half or a lower damage from your weapon. Be careful with them because they are the ones with the greatest risk and the rewards are usually not worth it.
Not always the most powerful
On Returnal It is not worth that big donkey, walk or not. When choosing a weapon, always try to choose the one you think is most useful. You will often come across other weapon styles that do a bit more damage, but the awkwardness of their firing or their cadence may not compensate for this improvement. Take them, shoot and see which one you prefer to keep.
Learn the enemy patterns
Reading enemy movements is a breeze, especially those who pounce on you mercilessly. The key is to dodge at the exact moment, so smash your head against a wall until you get the hang of it because once you do, stopping is going to be almost impossible.
Master Active Recharge
What during the first bars does not seem to be a great addition, beyond reducing the time of a reload that is not really necessary because the weapons recharge themselves, over time it can end up being very important.
When you get to that point where each overload Activate a special ability like homing missiles, you will appreciate having learned to master it.
Stay tuned for the secondary shot
Another action that I didn’t pay much attention to during the first few games and that I learned to master and love in equal measure is the secondary shot.
Without a doubt, it is one of the most useful aids that it offers us Returnal And, in fact, I would recommend turning up the volume on the remote so you always know when to use it. Also take advantage of any parasite, artifact or object that reduces the waiting time for recharging.
Go for the life bar
If you want to beat the game, your main objective should be to expand your life bar. It does not matter if it is based on collecting objects (do not confuse those that heal you with those that extend the life bar), spending obolites on artifacts and improvements, or based on embracing the useful parasites.
Either you get to the end with a life bar that is more than double its original size or it will be difficult survive bosses.
Take advantage of the challenges
The challenges you’ll unlock shortly after starting are a perfect way to earn Ether while trying out other weapon styles. The idea of playing based on a score also helps you see where you fail and how to improve, so it is a kind of perfect training.
As you will see below, patience is the key to surviving in Returnal. Do not be obsessed with reaching the last point on the map that you managed to reach as soon as possible because, in addition to being able to do it very quickly, you will also arrive in the worst possible conditions. The game tricks you by offering you that option, but it is best that you prepare as much as possible in each attempt before continuing to advance.
Play your way
That being said, the best way to enjoy Returnal is to play it your way. It doesn’t matter if you do it defensively attacking from behind doors or running like crazy like a headless chicken.
The game supports any type of strategy that you can think is convenient, so you worry about enjoying it and embracing the frustration. Every death means that your character will return in better condition to overcome the challenge.
The perfect Returnal run to reach the end and take down all the bosses
As a last gift, here is the infallible trick to overcome Returnal from beginning to end. It does not matter if your skill level is not the best or that you think you cannot overcome the challenges that he throws at you. I guarantee that here it is worth more skill than strength.
When you get to a biome make sure you go through all the rooms without trying to go straight for the boss or jump to the next biome. It does not matter if your weapon level is regularized when a new biome enters, that is important, but not essential.
Make sure to scrutinize each room well to get all the objects and check the map to go back when you get a key to open a chest or door that was inaccessible. Also to collect life if you did not need it before and now you have the bar shaking.
Try to save as many oboliths as possible to get improve weapon damage and health when you have the option. Also, save as much ether as you can to spend on the reappearance of the biome or boss that you have choked on (remember that it will stop working when you change biome).
Leave the challenge rooms always for last (the yellow ones with the star on them). They are the hardest of each biome, but once you have collected all the possible improvements and have killed all the monsters in that area, overcoming them will be a breeze.
With all the prizes and upgrades collected, and all the enemies eliminated, you can go to the next boss or use the teleport to jump to the next biome. Do not despair when picking up the object that regulates your weapon level at the entrance, it may not go up much, but think about everything else you have achieved in the previous biome and how your character has improved in the process.
Repeat the process until you reach the final boss and kill him without suffering.