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  • Writer's pictureShantanu Rastogi

Tales of Kenzera: Zau

PLAYED ON: Nintendo Switch


I’ve been a fan of Abubakar Salim, the founder of Surgent Studios, since I played Assassin’s Creed Origins. His performance as Bayek was so phenomenal, that I wanted to know more about the actor and I’ve started following him since then. I was excited after he announced a new game at the Game Awards last year and, being a sucker for platforming games, this Metroidvania-style adventure intrigued me!



Yes, I pre-ordered this game for my Nintendo Switch. BUT it wasn’t just out of excitement though, I did play a demo of this game on my PC via Steam and I enjoyed it 🔥

After playing Tales of Kenzera: Zau, I'm struck by the game's ability to weave a touching narrative into a captivating gameplay experience. Surgent Studios’ debut title delves deep into themes of grief and self-discovery, inviting players to join protagonist Zau on an emotional quest to revive his father. What unfolds is a heartfelt tale that resonates on a personal level, reminding us of the power of storytelling in video games.

 

GAME DETAILS

PLATFORM: PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, PC | PUBLISHER: EA Originals | DEVELOPER: Surgent Studios | RELEASE: April 23, 2024

 

From the beginning, I was drawn into the rich tapestry of Kenzera's world. While the game's Metroidvania elements may not break new ground, its linear approach serves as a welcoming path for players of all levels. Rather than getting lost in complex level design, I found myself immersed in Zau's emotional journey, navigating through lush biomes and engaging with a cast of memorable characters.


One of the game's standout features is its fluid combat system and traversal mechanics. As I mastered Zau's abilities, seamlessly switching between elemental masks to overcome obstacles and defeat enemies, I couldn't help but feel a sense of satisfaction. Though combat encounters may lack variety at times, the overall experience remains enjoyable, offering moments of excitement and challenge throughout.


In-Game Screenshots by us, on Nintendo Switch

*only took the screenshots from Act One here


TSHC Score: 8.5/10

Tales of Kenzera: Zau did leave a lasting impression on me. Its touching narrative, coupled with solid gameplay mechanics, created an experience that was both moving and immersive. While it may not revolutionize the genre, it serves as a reminder of the importance of empathy and understanding in the face of loss. As I journeyed alongside Zau, I found myself not only exploring the depths of grief but also discovering the strength to embrace new beginnings.

 

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