Harry Krueger acknowledged that there is interest in making the title more accessible but does not consider it viable for the concept
Although in most video games difficulty is an issue to be considered within the marketing process, as it seeks to cover all types of users, there are proposals that revolve around the challenge as it is part of its concept. Much has been said about it from the works of FromSoftware or Team Ninja, but there are also other exponents such as Housemarque with Returnal and recently its director spoke about the difficulty of the game.
RETURNAL COULD NOT BE UNDERSTOOD AS A CONCEPT IF IT WERE EASY
During his participation in Greg Miller’s PS I Love You XOXO show (via VGC ), Harry Krueger, director of Returnal , referred to the difficulty of the game and the requests of some users for options to exist in this regard. In this sense, Krueger pointed out that the first objective of Housemarque is to find a balance between the difficulty and accessibility of its video games and recognized that more can be done in terms of the latter, but assured that this would conflict with the game’s proposal.
HOUSEMARQUE WILL PAY ATTENTION TO THE DIFFICULTY, BUT DOES NOT GUARANTEE ANYTHING
That said, the Returnal director noted, “The character, Celine, she is talking about dying over and over and how these are insurmountable odds, and she can’t keep going on, and there’s this descent into madness that is happening purely because of the challenges she’s facing, and her challenges are the player’s challenges as well in many ways.”.
“It feels like if you were allowed to just power through a boss without any challenge, or just go from A to B to C through the narrative points, it almost feels like it would create a bit of dissonance.”
“The game is telling you this is really challenging, and that you’re overcoming these obstacles but you wouldn’t have had to experience that friction. So that’s always a line to walk, but it’s something we’re going to keep in mind.”
Recently, Returnal won the Game of the Year award at the BAFTA 2022 Awards , fair recognition for Housemarque as his game was one of the most interesting proposals in the first part of the PS5 cycle.