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Returnal: hands-on preview

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Returnal launches on April 30. This PS5 exclusive is the result of four years of meticulous crafting by Housemarque, the Finnish studio known for the twitch-based thrills of the likes of Super Stardust, Nex Machina, and acclaimed PS4 launch title Resogun. Returnal takes the DNA of that illustrious arcade heritage – tight controls, compact gameplay loops – and splices it with compelling character drama and a cosmic mystery in the dark, uncharted heart of deep space. The result is a third-person sci-fi action thriller and the team’s biggest, most ambitious project to date. 

Ever since last year’s first reveal, you know some of what to expect. Housemarque has touched upon Returnal’s combat; teased its story. (If you haven’t kept up to date, don’t worry: we recap below). Now, after spending several hours with a near-complete version of the game, we have a better sense of how these and more come together. And, in addition, how Housemarque is leveraging the PlayStation 5’s features for an impressive next-gen debut.

A broadcast signal of unknown origins draws Selene, a Greek-American ASTRA deep space scout to an unmapped world. Her arrival onto Atropos is a violent one: an explosive accident mid-orbit sends her ship Helios spiralling into a crash landing. This sequence is an excellent early showcase for what the studio’s got in store for us with the DualSense controller’s haptic feedback: every metal-crunching impact is mimicked on the controller. When a flaming Helios roars across the width of your TV screen, you feel that fatal flyby through your hands.   

With her ship downed but her suit’s systems still active and tracking the broadcast, Selene sets off, armed with only a sidearm and a scientist’s tenaciousness. Between the signal’s origin and her are multiple biomes, each a labyrinth of interconnected areas. In each location remnants of an ancient civilisation and highly aggressive creatures await. Selene must adapt artifacts from the former to survive the latter. And when she fails to do so, two inevitabilities: you resurrect at the site of the crash, and this weaponised world has reshaped itself around you.  

A great example of DualSense controller’s adaptive triggers at work: L2 will lock halfway when pulled for a zoomed in Focus Aim (this also highlights enemy weak spots in red). Pull fully down to activate your weapon’s alt-fire mode. You can monitor alt-fire cooldown with your HUD and keep an ear out for a specific audio ping that plays when recharge is complete. But there’s a cool detail that’s DualSense controller specific: If you keep the trigger pulled after discharge, you’ll feel a low-level vibration that’ll steadily increase in intensity, matching the weapon’s alt-fire recharge cycle. 

The procedural generation and roguelike nature of Returnal are both gameplay and story hook. Each cycle will reorder every biome’s areas and their contents. Variations that paired with the game’s brooding, bristling score make exploration ever-dangerous, even as you grow proficient in navigating throu

The Elder Scrolls Online: Console Enhanced comes to PS5 on June 8

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The Elder Scrolls Online: Console Enhanced is a new version of ESO designed to make full use of the native power of the PlayStation 5 console. Even better, Console Enhanced is completely free for all ESO players. All you need to do to get it is simply own the game and a PlayStation 5.

What kind of improvements can you expect to see with this new version? For starters, when running the game in Performance mode, you’ll experience Tamriel at a crisp 60 frames per second—a first for ESO on consoles. In addition to this, Console Enhanced introduces a host of visual improvements for PS5 players, including increased draw distance, fully unlocked high-resolution textures, improved reflections, improved ambient occlusion, improved shadows, and greater depth of field.

Experience Solitude with improved reflections and draw distance

Phew! All of these additions and improvements will create an even more visually stunning and immersive experience for you when exploring Tamriel on the PS5, and with the option to switch between Performance mode and Fidelity mode, you can tailor how your machine prioritizes the game’s performance and graphics. Did we mention this new version is completely free? You can download it on your PS5 when Update 30 and the Blackwood Chapter launches on June 8.

Explore Skyrim like you’ve never seen it before on PlayStation 5

Free play, sale, & Blackwood Prologue live

If you’re looking for an excuse to try or jump back into The Elder Scrolls Online, now is the perfect time with our Free Play Event, sale, and introduction of the new Blackwood Prologue. 

Now live, the Free Play Event allows you to download and try ESO for free, giving you access to the base game and Vvardenfell zone until April 13. Once you’ve begun your adventures in Tamriel, you can then pick up the ESO base game or last year’s Greymoor Chapter (part of the Dark Heart of Skyrim saga) at up to 67% off with our sale also running during the Free Play Event period.

A new adventure awaits in the Blackwood Prologue

Finally, the Blackwood Prologue questline is now live and part of the ESO base game, kicking off a story that takes you to the upcoming chapter and beyond. In this free questline (available for all ESO players including free play players), you team up with Eveli Sharp-Arrow and Lyranth to investigate the emergence of a new Daedric cult. As part of the Gates of Oblivion year-long adventure, what you discover in these new quests will have dire consequences for all of Tamriel.

Big changes are coming for ESO on PlayStation, and we can’t wait to share more about Console Enhanced and the massive leap forward the new generation offers. Don’t forget, this new version will be available as a free download on June 8 for everybody who owns the game on the PlayStation 5. We can’t wait to see how the community reacts to the future of ESO on PlayStation.

PlayStation Plus games for April: Days Gone, Oddworld: Soulstorm, and Zombie Army 4: Dead War

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Welcome back one of PlayStation’s heroes turned unlikely revolutionary, withstand the worst an unforgiving wilderness can throw at you and repel an undead armageddon with April’s PlayStation Plus lineup!

Lead Mudokons to freedom in Oddworld: Soulstorm. Devise techniques to survive Freaker hordes in Days Gone. Gear up and give zombies hell with your squad in Zombie Army 4: Dead War. The stakes are high whatever adventure you choose to play first. All three games will be available to download from Tuesday, April 6 – Monday, May 3.

Let’s take a closer look at the choices that await you next month.

PlayStation Plus games for April: Days Gone, Oddworld: Soulstorm, and Zombie Army 4: Dead War

Oddworld: Soulstorm* | PS5**

Oddworld’s Abe returns in this action adventure platformer set directly after the events of 2014’s Oddworld: New ‘N’ Tasty. Having undergone a transformation from clueless cog in a mega-corporate machine to unlikely hero and beacon of hope, Abe must now save his fellow Mudokons by any means necessary. As you recruit more followers, stick to stealth and puzzle solve to survive or scavenge goods and craft an arsenal to liberate your friends. In Oddworld: Soulstorm, you will begin to understand the power of many will be needed to solve problems that the individual alone cannot.

PlayStation Plus games for April: Days Gone, Oddworld: Soulstorm, and Zombie Army 4: Dead War

Days Gone | PS4

Ride into a desperate, dog-eat-dog open world of the Pacific Northwest as drifter and bounty hunter, Deacon St. John. Risk the threats of the broken road on the back of your trusty bike as you face swarms of mindless feral Freakers – and

Brew your perfect beer in new sim Brewmaster

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Hello, PlayStation players! We here at Auroch Digital and Sold Out are excited to announce that our homebrewing simulator game, Brewmaster, will be coming to PlayStation in 2022. 

Brew your perfect beer in new sim Brewmaster

This is the first look at our new game, where you’ll be able to take control of the science behind the beer, and perfect authentic brewing techniques in the ultimate celebration of craft beer. 

At Auroch we specialise in games that connect to the real world. Lots of people on the Auroch team are foodies and craft beer fans, and our studio is based in Bristol which has a vibrant craft beer scene with amazing breweries to go with it. We’d been exploring brewing in our spare time, so making this game made so much sense to us.

Brewmaster is for anyone with an interest in brewing, from complete beginners who wouldn’t know a hydrometer if it was sitting in their saucepan of wort, to seasoned beer aficionados who want to build their dream brewing space.

This is the kind of game even non beer drinkers will enjoy. Brewmaster is about the process, not just the end result. Beer brewing is a fascinating subject and there’s so much that goes into making great beer. The real chemistry is quite nerdy but we really wanted to focus on making our game accessible to everyone, so while the simulation under the hood is complex, the way you interact with it is easily understandable, and as you play the game you’ll gradually be taught the more detailed elements of brewing. 

Something extra special about Brewmaster is that i

Introducing the Expeditions update for No Man’s Sky

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Hello! We are pleased to announce that today we are releasing Expeditions, a major update for No Man’s Sky, across PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and PlayStation VR. 

Introducing the Expeditions update for No Man’s Sky

It’s barely been six weeks since we released our previous update Companions. This introduced pets, and we have loved watching PlayStation players adopt, ride, and forge relationships with a wide variety of weird and wonderful creatures they find in the universe. On planet, in the Nexus or on community missions, encountering and journeying with other travellers is now just as much about meeting their trusty sidekicks. And those creature friends are going to be good company for what we’ve got coming today in Expeditions. 

The Expeditions update introduces an all-new game mode, which will change each season. For the first time we will be starting all players together on the same planet and setting them off on a community expedition. Through the Expedition planner Travellers can embark on a series of milestones, each bringing new challenges… some are simple, others only the most dedicated will reach. Completed milestones unlock gorgeous mission patches to display, and a host of new content that can be accessed across all saves.

If you are a returning player looking for a fresh start, an experienced explorer looking to recapture the awe of your first moments in No Man’s Sky, or a new player wishing to join in a huge community experience – then Expeditions should be a great place to jump in.

An alternative to our four existing Normal, Creative, Survival, and Permadeath modes, it begins a series of community-focussed seasonal adventures and will expand, grow and surprise as seasons go on.

In the coming weeks, completing the exploration goals unlocks unique rewards which players can take back into the other game modes. Rewards such as a cool new jetpack, an exclusive ship, weapon, a title are now available… and much, much more. Successful completion of ea

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