Game Guides

Returnal: How to Get the Secret Ending

Atropos isn't done with you yet. Here's how to get the true ending of Returnal.

by Diego Perez


Returnal is a very mysterious game at its core, and there’s even a secret true ending that is only obtainable after beating the final boss that provides closure to the game’s story. That’s right, Returnal isn’t over once you beat the final boss. Once the big bad is defeated, you’ll awaken at the beginning of the cycle like normal, meaning there is still much more to see on Atropos and there are still many more secrets to uncover. There are more cutscenes to see and more story sequences to view before you finally set the controller down for good. Here’s how to get the secret true ending in Returnal.

How to Get the Secret Ending in Returnal

To get the secret ending, you need to finish the game normally first. That means conquering all six of the game’s biomes and defeating the final boss, Ophion. Once you beat the final boss, you’ll reawaken at the Helios crash site and begin Act 3. This portion of the game seems normal at first glance, but there are new objects scattered throughout each biome that will help you unlock the true ending of the game.

Here’s how to see the secret ending of Returnal.

  1. Beat the game normally.
  2. Collect all six Sunface Fragments from each of the game’s biomes.
  3. View the final house sequence to obtain the Car Key.
  4. Defeat the final boss again.
  5. Unlock the sedan to view the true ending.

In Act 3 of Returnal, you can find new items called Sunface Fragments in each biome. There are six Sunface Fragments in total – one for each biome. The map layouts are random, so we can’t tell you exactly where to find each of the fragments, but there is one hidden in each of the six biomes. You’ll have to explore each region thoroughly to find the fragments as they’re often hidden toward the end of each biome. Thankfully, Sunface Fragments are permanent items so you won’t lose them when you die.


Once you obtain all six fragments, Selene will comment on them and say the item is now complete. You can also check to see how many fragments you have in the Permanent Equipment section of the Status tab of the menu. With all six fragments in hand, you’ll need to complete all the house sequences.

The house only appears in the Overgrown Ruins and the Echoing Ruins, which are the first and fourth biomes. You’ll need to see all the Overgrown Ruins house sequences before you start the Echoing Ruins sequences. Once you see a house sequence, restart your run until you come across the house again. Once the house in the Overgrown Ruins locks you out, you’ve seen all the sequences for that biome. At this point, move onto the Echoing Ruins and repeat the process until the house locks you out there too.


If you’ve seen most of the Echoing Ruins house sequences but the house locks you out because it’s “dark,” then you don’t have all the Sunface Fragments. If you have all six fragments, you can see the final house story sequence in the Echoing Ruins. After completing this first-person segment, you’ll get the Car Key, a necessary item that you’ll need to see the true ending of Returnal. Once you obtain the Car Key, you need to beat the final boss again.

With the Car Key in your inventory, fight your way through the game’s second act until you reach Ophion. Defeat the final boss once again and you’re almost at the secret ending of Returnal. Jump down the hole after defeating the final boss, only this time follow the shining headlights to reach the abandoned sedan that you may have passed on your first victory run. Use the Car Key to unlock the sedan’s door and you’ll be treated to the secret true ending of Returnal. A final cutscene will play, and you’ll be done with the game’s story for good this time.

Returnal is available now on PlayStation 5.

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