Tales of Kenzera: Zau – A Journey of Myth and Redemption

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Tales of Kenzera: Zau

The good vibes of respect and kindness are earnestly presented in wildly divergent but effective ways in the speedy “Tales of Kenzera: Zau,” brimming with ancient Bantu myths, and in “Harold Halibut,” a slow-moving science fiction story that leans on the friendship between a human and a fishlike alien.

Through struggle, Zau finds that life is more complex, with dead ends and choices that force you to try again.

Overview of Tales of Kenzera: Zau

“Tales of Kenzera: Zau” is a paean to one son’s paternal memories where the narrative, gameplay, art, and music are carefully woven like silk velvet into a universally relatable experience.

Helmed by the actor Abubakar Salim (Assassin’s Creed: Origins, “Raised by Wolves”), the engrossing Metroidvania is his method of processing anguish by refashioning some of the rich African myths his Kenya-born father imparted before he died. The moment you step into a futuristic apartment before the ancient fables unfold fully, you move past neatly placed African-themed paintings, rugs, sculptures, and books, hints at what is to come.

Overcome by loss, young Zuberi immerses himself in a tome that his father left him, as the surroundings change to become the world of Kenzera. Here, Zau, a young shaman adorned with two beaded necklaces and some white body paint for protection from evil, explores seven labyrinthine territories to defeat giant beings for Kalunga, the God of Death.

Zau takes on this daunting task so Kalunga will return life to his father. It’s not only the enemies, but the characters’ exchanges along the twisting paths, that are fascinating to encounter. With commanding aphorisms and adages, Kalunga tempers Zau’s need for immediate answers. Through struggle, Zau finds that life is more complex, with dead ends and choices that force you to try again.

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