Tech

Kena: Bridge of Spirits

By PCGamer
on

65

Looks better than it plays, but it’s got a good heart.

By GamesRadar
on

80

An agreeable adventure that’s transformed into something special by its enchanting aesthetic.

By GameRant
on

80

Kena: Bridge of Spirits is a solid action-adventure game and an impressive debut effort by Ember Lab. It will scratch the itch for anyone looking for a Zelda-like adventure on PlayStation, but while it’s been compared to games like Zelda and Pikmin, Kena: Bridge of Spirits still stands on its own. Hopefully, this isn’t the end of Kena’s story, as it would be great to see the ideas here expanded on in future games.

By DigitalTrends
on

90

Kena: Bridge of Spirits is as gorgeous and elegantly crafted as a big budget game, making it a statement debut for Ember Lab.

By IGN
on

80

With its elegantly simple combat and beautiful world, Kena: Bridge of Spirits harkens back to the days of the N64/GameCube-era Zeldas, Okami, and Star Fox Adventures, while also adding modern sensibilities and a distinct personal touch.

By GameInformer
on

90

Bridge of Spirits stumbles a little in spots, yet confidently sprints into the heart of the adventure, rewarding the player with secrets galore and visuals that are almost always worth admiring. If you love Zelda-like games or are just looking for an experience that will make you smile every step of the way, you can’t go wrong with Kena: Bridge of Spirits.

By GameSpot
on

90

Kena: Bridge of Spirits is ultimately a game about making those connections, just like it’s about making a connection with the game world around you through the Rot. It centers on characters who tried valiantly but failed to help one another, and what dealing with that pain did to them. It’s about exploring a world and seeing what it once was, and helping to restore it again.

By Destructoid
on

80

At times, the world feels too sparse and samey, but I think the restraint was smart overall. While the platforming can be almost too basic, the action feels spot-on in a really streamlined way. I wouldn’t call Kena: Bridge of Spirits overly ambitious. More like “strategically ambitious.” Ember Lab avoided biting off more than it could chew with its first game, and I dug it. I hope there’s a sequel! After a much-deserved break, of course.

By Ars Technica
on

85

Ultimately, this week’s Sony console exclusive (also on PC) is an homage to Zelda’s classic core, with a few clever twists and a compelling story built on top, as opposed to a revolutionary physics-bending adventure à la Breath of the Wild. That’s more than fine with me, especially because it doesn’t waste players’ time by dragging any longer than it needs to (though you can pad the runtime an extra hour or two by hunting for its most buried shinies). I will treasure my time with Kena: Bridge of Spirits and look forward to even bigger projects from Ember Lab to come.

By EuroGamer
on

To me, Kena: Bridge of Spirits very much has first game syndrome – something with all the right ideas, weakened by their execution. If it does well – and given the fever with which it’s been followed leading up to its release, I expect it will – it’ll be because we often value AAA looks and mechanics more highly than attempts at innovation. I’m sure with this foundation Ember Lab has a great game in it, but this isn’t it just yet.

By Polygon
on

Inspirations should always serve as a jumping-off point, something to build upon. But it often feels less like Kena: Bridge of Spirits was inspired by things, and more like it decided it could squish its beautifully realized world of magic and spirits into a ready-made mold. The result is a thoughtless blend; a hybridized paste. Vibrant and undoubtedly beautiful, Kena: Bridge of Spirits shows us every color in the spectrum. But strangely, it all feels brown — a muddy, grayish brown that comes from having mixed together every color on the palette.

By Rock, Paper, Shotgun
on

If there’s anything I want you to know about Kena: Bridge Of Spirits, it’s that its simplicity is still beautifully expressive. In particular, Kena has a truly cinematic style, with some breathtaking cutscenes, and it deploys them with real expertise. Not only is Kena aware of what it does well, it does those things very well indeed. And sure, the combat isn’t in-depth or complex, but it’s not trying to be. Kena: Bridge Of Spirits is a game about atmosphere, and it’s a breath of fresh air.

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