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How Long Does it Take to Beat Returnal?

How Long Does it Take to Beat Returnal?

Whether you’re playing roguelite games or are trapped in a seemingly endless time loop of death and revival, the concept of “time” becomes a little more flexible out of necessity. In a normal, non-looping game, there’s more of a definitive beginning and ending to the journey. But in a story where beginnings and endings are a dime a dozen, it’s a slightly more complicated question. So, to one’s best estimate, how long does it take to beat Returnal?

As a roguelite game, Returnal kicks you back to the very beginning of the game every time you get yourself killed. This means that an actual completion of the story can only happen in a single run. While an entire run of the game would probably only take a few hours, you’re almost definitely not going to make that happen on your first try. As such, when the question of game length comes up, you need to factor in the assumption that you’re going to die and restart at least a few times.

How Long Does it Take to Beat Returnal?

To help you make an educated guess of how long the main story will take you to finish, you need to factor in the number of levels, the process of gathering upgrades, and how much time you dedicate to minutiae in an individual run. According to testimonials from players, to get enough upgrades to stand your ground, as well as build enough personal skill and familiarity with the game’s six different biomes, you’re probably looking at anywhere from 10 to 30 hours of gameplay to clear the story. Of course, as I said, this is heavily contingent on your own skill level with the game, not to mention a smidge of luck. 

Even when you finish the story, there’s still a lot of miscellaneous stuff to fill out, like collecting every possible weapon, killing every possible enemy, and so on. If you’re a completionist, expect Returnal to keep you busy for a good, long while.

About the author

Daniel Trock

Since the first time he picked up a controller as a child, Daniel has been a dyed-in-the-wool gaming fanatic, with a Steam library numbering over 600 games. His favorite pastime, aside from playing games, is doing deep dives on game wikis to learn more about their lore and characters.

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