This week Sony unveiled a handful of games from their third party Japanese partners and a surprise update from their internal first party studio in their live stream State Of Play. That sole first party update came from Housemarque, the developers of the highly acclaimed new IP Returnal.
Launching later this month Returnal will receive a free update, titled Returnal: Ascension, that includes a co-op story mode and a survival challenge mode called Tower of Sisyphus. According to the PlayStation blog, co-op will function much like the solo experience with a few additional changes to accommodate the second player.
One such feature being the addition of a tether system wherein, if players get too far apart they will be drawn back together to keep the experience focused on co-operation. Additionally, if one player dies, there will be a revival option to get them back on their feet, but it will come as a huge risk.
Normally, death would mean the end of a cycle, however, co-op provides an additional opportunity for folks to keep their runs going. With the difficulty of Returnal being a core component of the game’s design, this new mode will offer struggling players a chance to progress.
It will be interesting to see how Housemarque finds balance with the addition of co-op to the single player portion. Will there be more enemies? Will they deal more damage? Will they acquire new skills? Or will the game largely stay the same and just add an additional player to ease the experience for newcomers? Only time will tell, but this update will bring back fans of the game.
The Tower of Sisyphus will also add a new dynamic for fans of Returnal in the form of an endless survival mode. Players like myself, have been clamoring for new content after completing the main story. Returnal’s procedurally generated levels offers some variety, but once you’ve mastered the flow of the game and levelled most weapons, runs become fairly familiar and easy.
With this new addition, the excitement of testing your capabilities in a new environment that progressively gets more difficult after each room is an exciting prospect to dive into. With high scores and leaderboards, the Tower of Sisyphus will give Returnal fans more opportunities for bragging rights while uncovering new secrets in this game mode.
Fans will get the opportunity to dive back into Atropos with these new changes later this month.
Featured image via: blog.PlayStation