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Kena: Bridge of Spirits release date, gameplay, trailer and more

kena bridge of spirits
(Image credit: Ember Lab)

Kena: Bridge of Spirits was one of the first games that Sony revealed for the PS5. That’s pretty remarkable, considering that Kena is not a big-budget title from a team of thousands. Rather, it’s an indie game from a small team that has never produced a video game before. But Kena: Bridge of Spirits delighted Sony, to the point where the game will be a timed PlayStation console exclusive.

The pitch for Kena: Bridge of Spirits is straightforward enough. You play as Kena: a “spirit guide,” who uses a staff and magic spells to fight off a variety of enemies. This third-person action/adventure takes place in a fantasy world inspired by East Asian folklore. In other words, you’ve almost certainly played a game like Kena: Bridge of Spirits before. But you may not have played one that looks this gorgeous, from a team so small.

Read on to find out what we know about Kena: Bridge of Spirits’ release date, gameplay, trailer and more.

kena bridge of spirits

(Image credit: Ember Lab)

Kena: Bridge of Spirits release date

Here’s an easy one to start. Kena: Bridge of Spirits will be out for PC, PS4 and PS5 on August 24, 2021. It’s possible that the game could come to other platforms someday, but those are the only guaranteed systems at the moment.

The game was initially supposed to come out in the first quarter of this year, but the COVID-19 pandemic forced the dev team to work from home, slowing down production. Given how often games have been getting delayed this year, it’s possible that Kena’s release date could change again. But until we hear otherwise, it’s late August.

kena bridge of spirits

(Image credit: Ember Lab)

Kena: Bridge of Spirits gameplay

We have a pretty good idea of how Kena: Bridge of Spirits will play, thanks to two detailed trailers for the game. You’ll take control of Kena: a teenage girl armed with a staff and a host of magical powers. The Kena: Bridge of Spirits gameplay looks like pretty standard third-person action/adventure fare, as Kena explores colorful levels, jumps and climbs her way to higher platforms and dispatches enemies with both melee and magic skills.

The unique twist here involves adorable mystical creatures called the Rot. As Kena progresses through the game, she can collect Rot companions, which give her new abilities for both exploration and combat. Expect to spend some time collecting and customizing your Rot allies, as well as figuring out which Rot abilities you’ll need in any given situation.

kena bridge of spirits

(Image credit: Ember Lab)

Kena: Bridge of Spirits trailer

There are two trailers for Kena: Bridge of Spirits. The first one comes from the PlayStation Future of Gaming event last June, where Sony first revealed the game:

The second trailer arrived at the February 2021 State of Play event, where we got a slightly longer look at the story and gameplay:

They both show off similar aspects of the game, including its combat system and the general premise for its high fantasy story. The first trailer is about 2 minutes long, while the second is about 3 minutes long, so neither one is exactly a deep dive.

kena bridge of spirits

(Image credit: Ember Lab)

Kena: Bridge of Spirits pre-order

In general, Tom’s Guide doesn’t recommend pre-ordering games. (If a game launches in a poor state, a pre-order means that you’re stuck with it.) However, if you’re absolutely sold on a Kena: Bridge of Spirits pre-order, it’s not hard to do.

On PS4 and PS5, you can pre-order Kena: Bridge of Spirits via the PlayStation Store. The standard edition costs $40, and comes with just the game. The Digital Deluxe Edition costs $50, and comes with a soundtrack, as well as a few in-game items. The game does not have a physical edition available yet.

PC purchasers will have to pick up the game through the Epic Games Store. As with the PlayStation pre-orders, you can pick up the standard edition for $40, or the Digital Deluxe Edition for $50.

kena bridge of spirits

(Image credit: Ember Lab)

Kena: Bridge of Spirits on Steam

At launch, Kena: Bridge of Spirits will be available only on the Epic Games Store on PC. This has led potential buyers to wonder whether the game will eventually get a Steam release. According to the development team, the answer is “yes” — but we don’t know exactly when. Historically, timed exclusives on the Epic Games Store often open up to other shops after about a year. So if you’re absolutely dying to play Kena: Bridge of Spirits on Steam, mark your calendar for September 2022.

Marshall Honorof

Marshall Honorof is an editor for Tom's Guide, covering gaming hardware, security and streaming video. After hours, you can find him practicing taekwondo or doing deep dives on classic sci-fi.