The Persistence Overview (PS4) | Push Sq.

The Persistence Review (PS4) | Push Square

Republished on Wednesday, twenty eighth October, 2021: We’re bringing this evaluate again from the archives following the announcement of November 2021’s PlayStation Plus lineup. The unique textual content follows.

The Persistence is an ideal identify. Sure, it pertains to some sci-fi mumbo-jumbo buried on the very core of the sport’s lore, however actually it encapsulates what the sport is about: persistence. You’re the one remaining survivor on an area station that’s inevitably transmuted into some sort of homicidal hellhole, however the excellent news is that every time you’re the sufferer of grievous bodily hurt, you’ll be able to reprint a brand new physique and get again to work.

Over time, you’ll have the ability to increase your clones with new talents, like stronger melee assaults and higher “physique tissue” that enhances stealth; the sport tries actually laborious to contextualise its rogue-lite underpinnings, and we respect Liverpool-based developer Firesprite going all-in on that entrance. What you find yourself with is a heady combination of Useless House and Rogue Legacy, all playable completely with PlayStation VR.

Actually, it comes collectively much better than it has any proper to. You’ll end up working via a number of compartments of the area station, every randomly generated and residential to a model new choice of murderous mutants. The sport world is made up of various “constructing blocks”, which implies you’ll encounter samey wanting rooms, however you’ll want to concentrate to the best way during which they’re organised if you wish to attain your goal on the finish.

Every flooring has a distinct purpose, and these are usually extra “designed”, together with your progress checkpointed even after loss of life. Whereas purists might lament this specific serving to hand – there’s an unlockable survival mode for many who need a extra hardcore expertise – we felt that it reduce down on useless repetition in a sport that already expects you to grind just a bit bit as a way to get your hero into form.

As you’d count on of a rogue-lite, there are various currencies to maintain observe of, the primary one being Stem Cells. These may be gathered as you discover the area station, in addition to extracted straight from enemies. Sneaking up on foes will permit you to stealth kill them, sucking up their DNA within the course of. Alternatively, you’ll be able to parry most assaults whenever you’ve been detected, inflicting foes to stumble and opening the again of their head as much as extraction. It’s a satisfying mechanic.

However there’s way more to The Persistence’s fight than simply stealth assaults and parries; the sport can be effectively furnished with cool fight implements, starting from humble handguns during to mystical lances and invisibility cloaks. You may fabricate lots of these things across the area station, however you’ll want to take a position tokens to unlock and improve them, after which spend foreign money as a way to make them. Is the loop beginning to make sense but?

The cool factor in regards to the sport is the way it manages to make you are feeling overpowered, however solely in very brief bursts. Quite a lot of its end-of-level missions will increase you with limitless ammo, providing you with a tease of how the armaments work, solely to go away you with two or three bullets from then on. If you’re effectively provided and you’ve got plenty of gear in your particular person, you may really feel like a super-soldier – however these moments are uncommon, and also you’ll spend most of your time merely having to make do.

It is sensible, although: the sport desires you to be in your toes always, however it additionally desires you to be step by step edging ahead. As you collect increasingly Stem Cells, you’ll have the ability to beef up your talents, making your self stronger. However the deeper that you simply get into the area station, the stronger the threats grow to be, and so there’s this fixed sense of non-public progress balanced in opposition to a step by step growing issue curve.

To be honest, this arc isn’t at all times good, as there are events the place the sport’s algorithm will spit out a degree structure that feels unfair. However for probably the most half it’s effectively executed, and whereas the title’s by no means as scary as a extra “designed” marketing campaign, it’s nonetheless very nerve-racking – which is extra what it feels just like the developer’s going for. There’s no run button in any respect, so in case you muck up it may be laborious to flee – however this has the online results of merely elevating the stakes.

The digital actuality provides loads, too. Whereas it’s not at all times the prettiest sport, there are some nice lighting results and we’re large followers of the “look” person interface, which sees you merely specializing in belongings you need to decide up or hearth at. There are a number of consolation choices in addition to ample management customisation, and all of it feels good on the DualShock 4. As with every PlayStation VR sport, it’s the sense of place and scale that units it aside.

However there’s a social facet to the expertise as effectively, aided by a smartphone app which lets you play alongside (or in opposition to) a member of the family or buddy. Basically, the particular person taking part in on cellular will have the ability to see the sport’s map, and may have the chance to steer the headset wearer in direction of probably useful objects – or lethal threats. You are most likely not going to get too a lot use out of this mode, however it’s a considerate addition that is been effectively carried out.


The Persistence cleverly blends Useless House-esque outer-space sci-fi scares with the addictive arcade loop of rogue-lites like Rogue Legacy, leading to a PlayStation VR marketing campaign that’s each gut-wrenching and weirdly replayable. It gained’t take you 1,000,000 lightyears to finish the likeable marketing campaign, however a hardcore mode awaits whenever you’ve completed, and intelligent co-op performance provides a little bit longevity to the expertise as effectively. With a compelling gameplay format in addition to some nice gadgetry, that is one survival mission we totally loved.

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