We take a look at the sequel to beloved sandbox cRPG Kenshi. We will discuss all the current information about the development of Kenshi 2, platforms, release date and everything you can think of.
A quick editors note about the world of Kenshi
Kenshi 2 Announced!
Kenshi 2 Development
Community Updates Since Development Started
Will Kenshi 2 be Multiplayer?
Getting Involved with the Development of Kenshi
Images and Videos of Kenshi 2
Kenshi 2 Release Date
The world of Kenshi
Kenshi. A hardcore sandbox cRPG with one of the most brutal game worlds known to gaming. It is a game where you create your own story and truly start from nothing and try to rise up against a world that is set on having you die. Kenshi is a game created by Lo-Fi Games which started its life on the early access program of Steam many moons ago. Since that time, the game has been developed and fully released to the praise of its hardcore fanbase. It isn’t a perfect game. Even with its many years of development there are bugs and issues, but what game doesn’t have its issues? I remember playing Morrowind as a kid maxing my stats and creating a ridiculous spell that would catapult my character from one side of the map to the other. That was part of the fun. Watching one of my characters limbs fly off in Kenshi and zoom across the desert like Jessie and James blasting off again really is one of those moments that doesn’t make me upset at the developers, or feel like I’ve wasted my money. I like it. Anyway I am trailing off, this post isn’t about Kenshi. If you want to hear me go on about one of my favorite games of all time, read my Kenshi review here. This is about Kenshi 2.
Kenshi 2 Announced!
The developer ‘Captain Deathbeard’, originally made the announcement that the team had already begun working on a sequel to Kenshi. The announcement was made on the LoFi Games forums on the 20th of March, 2019. You can read the post here, including comments. The developer explained that they wanted to make a large press announcement but due to the fact they were seemingly not supporting the first Kenshi’s developement the decision was made to let players know that they are busy working on the sequel.
Kenshi 2 Development Details
In the original announcement Captain Deathbeard explained that they would continue to use the OGRE engine as in the original Kenshi as that would make development quicker and easier. LoFi has since changed that decision and instead of using the OGRE engine they will be making the switch over to the Unreal engine.
Chris Hunt, CEO of LoFi games made the announcement over on the Steam store on the 26th of September, 2019, through the ‘events/news’ tab for Kenshi. You can read Chris’ post here. Chris explains that the decision to make the change to the Unreal engine will mean better graphics with less effort spend, better performance and other nice quality of life features that just aren’t possible in the OGRE engine. (Cloth physics are mentioned).
Although bringing the game will be a large performance boost for the game, it also comes with some caveats. Explained in the same post on the Steam Forums, porting the game from one engine to the other, bringing assets and creating the same assets from scratch ruins a lot of work that has already started. Although players may see this as a huge setback, since the team announced they were working on Kenshi, only 6 months has passed since they decided to swap to the Unreal engine. Obviously a lot can happen within 6 months of development but personally I think its great that they decided to change the engine this early in development. We’ve seen games years in the making decide to swap engines and it essentially resets all the work that was previously done.
Will Kenshi 1 still be ported to the new engine?
When it was announced that Kenshi would be ported to the new engine the sequel was originally going to be developed on the updated OGRE engine. Since the decision was made to swap engines Chris has decided that porting Kenshi would be an extremely difficult task which would take more time and progress away from development on the second game. Inside the Steam post he created a straw poll to see what players though about the decision and asked whether players thought they should focus all of their efforts on Kenshi 2, or try to port Kenshi 1 and have Kenshi 2 be delayed. Currently 88% think that the team should focus all of their efforts on creating Kenshi 2 and I personally couldn’t agree more.
Will Kenshi 2 be an Epic exclusive?
A lot of concerns have been raised since the announcement that the game will use the Unreal engine. Fans think that the game may become a Epic Games exclusive and only available on their store. Not only has Chris Hunt, the CEO of Lo-fi explained that this is definitely not going to happen, Caliburn, community manager for Lo-fi games responded to Redditors on this post reiterating the fact that the game isn’t an Epic Store exclusive using the following words; “P.S. This doesn’t mean Epic Exclusive, it’s just a game engine choice. Don’t panic.”
It seems very clear at this point that Kenshi 2 will not be an Epic exclusive game.
Community Kenshi 2 Updates
The team over at Lo-fi post community updates around every month or 2. The updates generally talk about what has been happening in the development side of the company and also inner workings such as hires and changes. You can see the latest updates on the company over on the blog part of the company’s website. A link to the update posts can be found here.
Since development started on Kenshi 2 the team has been expanded and more people have been hired specifically to work on development of the sequel.
Kenshi 2 Multiplayer News
There has been no official announcement about Kenshi 2 featuring any kind of multiplayer modes. There are no co-op announcements or multiplayer planned for the game in general. This does not mean Kenshi 2 definitely won’t have any form of multiplayer but it seems unlikely at this point and may just be up to the large modding community.
Where can I share thoughts or Suggestions on Kenshi 2?
There are a few different avenues that can be used in order to share your thoughts or ideas about the development of Kenshi 2. Lo-Fi games is great in the way they interact with the community of Kenshi and really seem to enjoy the support and enthusiasm that fans bring. In just about every post they mention some of the ways you can get in touch with the team and talk about some of the channel that they view directly to get feedback. Some of the channels where you can talk Kenshi and submit ideas about Kenshi 2 will be listed below.
Media Releases for Kenshi 2
There have been a small amount of updates in video and image format for Kenshi 2. Lo-Fi Games have released some videos showcasing elements of Kenshi 2 on their YouTube channel.
You can view every currently released video from their YouTube channel embedded below.
A render of the Skimmer creature in Kenshi 2:
A video showcasing how furniture can be aligned with together and be placed in a ‘grid’ mode:
Showcasing the free placement furniture mode:
The ‘grid snapping’ furniture placement mode as seen in the 2nd video from the top:
A time-lapse video showcasing the Day/Night cycle in Kenshi:
A Video Showcasing the Design for a Gate
There have also been some official in-game images and photos released during the development of Kenshi 2. The images can be found underneath.
Object concept art for Kenshi 2:
Building Model Concept Model:
Building models rendered in-game:
Rocky scenery in-game:
Early image of furniture placed inside a building in Kenshi 2:
(The furniture models are subject to change as stated in a blog post. They are merely shown here to give the viewer an idea of how the layout of furniture will look.)
2 Images of the Terrain as Shown in Community Update 40
Kenshi 2 Release Date
There is no release date that has currently been announced for Kenshi 2. The game has only been in development since March, 2019. Given that the team swapped over to the unreal engine in September, 2019, that probably meant that development will have more or less started again from that date.
There is currently no news on whether or not Kenshi 2 will be released in early access. Given the community is such a large part of Kenshi in general, I can imagine they will be having some members of the community help alpha/beta test the game when the time is right.
We have seen a trend in smaller developers not setting a specific release date too early on games. Another one that springs to mind is the steam page for the Dwarf Fortress release. This page reads “Planned Release Date: Time is Subjective”. It is good to see that developers who really care about their games wanting to focus on getting a game done right and not having the pressure of releasing within a certain time-frame. We have seen the effect that hard release time-frames have on triple A games such as Cyberpunk: 2077. The every approaching release date notoriously saw the company crunching, working overtime and unfortunately still releasing a game which many deem unplayable.
To close with a quote from Shigeru Miyamoto “”A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad”.