Kena: Bridge of Spirits is a mystical and wonderful adventure game from Ember Lab, and it’s coming to PC, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5 in the latter months of 2020.
“This gorgeous adventure takes players on a journey of self-discovery as Kena restores balance to an ancient village in a once-thriving environment,” described the developer. Kena is a young Spirit Guide who seeks to understand and uncover the mysterious obliteration of her village. Using her staff, and the help of her soot sprite-a-like friends, the Rot, she will “disarm adversaries, unlock new skills, uncover secrets, and restore the beauty of the land.”
What’s in a name? The Rot by any other name would be as adorable as they are in the trailer. Ember Lab stressed that the player’s relationship with the Rot is a core element of the game’s combat, and a ‘nuanced skill evolution’ will see the player discovering new ways to manipulate their environment for Kena’s gain.
If this game looks a little familiar, it’s because the majorly successful Majora’s Mask fan film, ‘Terrible Fate’, is the work of Ember Lab. This film explored the dark origin of the game’s infamous Skull Kid, and made a serious case for a feature-length adaptation of a Zelda story. The studio has also released an original sci-fi/fantasy short film, Dust. The film was named Best Film at DragonCon, Best Sci-Fi by Hollyshorts, Best VFX, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography and Best of Fest at Filmquest, and is a Worldfest Remi Award Winner. Blimey. Kena: Bridge of Spirits, however, is their first foray into video games.
“We’ve had this game concept for some time, and we’re finally able to bring our vision to life with the support from Sony and the capabilities of the new hardware,” said Mike Grier, chief creative officer of Ember Lab. One example of this marriage of art and tech is in the DualSense controller response to the player pulling back the string of Kena’s Spirit Bow. The haptic feedback of the doohickey will simulate the string resistance of the weapon in the triggers. Nifty.
Kena: Bridge of Spirits will release this holiday season for PC, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5. Watch the trailer below.