Kentucky Route Zero

Episodic adventure game Kentucky Route Zero will at long last launch for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on 28th January, under the guise of its complete TV Edition.

It's on this date the saga's fifth and final slice will also arrive for PC, where episodes have been dropping on Steam since 2013.

If you're new to it all, Kentucky Route Zero is a point-and-click adventure seeped in story, set in and around an underground highway beneath US soil which is quietly used by all manner of people. Each episode brings more of these characters to light.

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Kentucky Route Zero - cardboardcomputer
We're so happy to share that Kentucky Route Zero will be updated with the conclusion of the story, Act V on January 28, 2020. This huge update also includes the free 'interludes' we released between episodes, localization (French, Italian, German, Spanish (Lat. Am. & European), Russian, Korean & Japanese), and many other fixes and improvements.

Thanks for being a great audience. Enjoy the new trailer!

Kentucky Route Zero - (Alice O'Connor)

The strange and wonderful adventure along the underground Kentucky Route Zero will conclude with Act V on January 28th, developers Cardboard Computer announced today. Seven years after the journey started, the end is almost in sight and oh it is glorious.


Kentucky Route Zero

I've only played the first act of Kentucky Route Zero. I liked it an awful lot—I raved about it in a review you might still find floating around out there somewhere—but I don't like episodic releases, and so after it was finished I decided to put the whole thing aside until I could play it all in one big, bizarre narrative hallucination. I did not expect to have to wait seven years, but here we are in 2020, and Cardboard Computer has now, finally, announced that the fifth and final act will be out on January 28.

Kentucky Route Zero is a slow, dreamlike amble through the magical back roads of the titular state, where some things happen and some things don't, and sometimes it's hard to tell the difference. It's remarkably immersive—I could almost feel the humidity of the sultry summer night in act 1—and spins its tale slowly, so that you might not notice the shift from "strange" to "surreal" as you and your dog attempt to deliver a piece of antique furniture to an address that nobody is sure actually exists.

"There are no explicit puzzles here—except for the meaning of the things you experience along the way or riddles proffered by your occasional companions," we wrote in our 84% review. "Characters fade from reality like apparitions, a radio booms out choral music in a deserted church, a burning tree marks a turning along the highway, and an old tannoy pings the depths of a disused mine, stirring memories of a forgotten disaster."

Kentucky Route Zero is available on Steam, GOG, Humble, and If you'd like to get a sense of what it's all about, sort of, Un Pueblo de Nada is a production of the fictional Echo River community, funded in part by a court-ordered grant from the Consolidated Power Company—a demo of sorts.

Kentucky Route Zero

Indie developer Cardboard Computer is responsible for Kentucky Route Zero, an episodic game of magical realism, secret highways, and strange Americana. The first episode of a planned five was released on January 7, 2013, and now there's a countdown suggesting the final episode could be out this week.

To access that countdown you'll need to be in the US and call the Kentucky Route Zero development status hotline on 1-858-WHEN-KRZ. You'll hear the following message: "The current status of Kentucky Route Zero is preparing for publication. More detailed information will be available shortly. You may wait with us if you want to. Please hold."

After chilling out with some hold music for a minute you'll be informed that your estimated wait time is three thousand and something minutes, a number that goes down if you stay on the line. The sleuths of Twitter and the Kentucky Route Zero wiki have recorded this message and done the math to calculate that it should hit zero this Tuesday, January 7, exactly seven years after the first episode was released.

If you'd like to learn more about Kentucky Route Zero, here's Joe Donnelly's making-of feature from a few years ago.

Kentucky Route Zero

Kentucky Route Zero, one of the best indie games ever made, headlines this week's Humble Discovery Bundle: pay $10 and you can play it alongside five other games. You'll get the season pass edition, which means you'll get access to the fifth and final episode when it finally comes out. 

The bundle also contains the Dungeon Keeper-inspired War for the Overworld and deep space survival game Osiris: New Dawn, which are worth a look.

Rounding out the bundle are physics-based building game Tricky Towers, tactical RPG Phantom Brave and co-op hack-and-slash RWBY: Grimm Eclipse.

The cheapest Kentucky: Route Zero has ever been is around $7.50, so if you see $2.50 worth of value in the other games, it's a good buy. Grab it here.

Humble is also selling three of the Tales JRPG series games—Tales of Symphonia, Tales of Zestiria and Tales of Berseria—for $23.99, which is an 80% discount.

And lastly, don't forget you can pick up the full first season of Hitman for $12 if you sign up to November's Humble Monthly Bundle

Kentucky Route Zero - Jake
Hi y'all -- Just wanted to pop in and share an update about what we've been working on lately.

First, here's the poster art for Act V:

Work on Act V continues at a good pace. It's hard to imagine moving on from this project, but we're eager to share the concluding episode with you when it's done.

Earlier this year, we published the free interlude between acts IV and V, "Un Pueblo De Nada." Definitely check that out if you missed it!

That's the news from us. If you'd ever like to reach us directly, you can email us at News usually hits our Twitter page @cardboardcompy first. And you can also follow us on Patreon, where we've been sharing some articles about our process and printing up some postcards & other art clutter. We also run an email newsletter if you prefer -- there are instructions to sign up for that in the game's steam install folder, in a file called "subscribe_to_mailing_list.txt"

We're a small crew of only three people without contractors, and we're all working on the game -- no community manager or PR person -- so we don't keep up on the steam forums or other sites' comment sections, etc. Those links above are the best places to contact us or keep up to date on development.

More soon, thanks for reading!
Kentucky Route Zero - Valve
Today's Deal: Save 70% on Kentucky Route Zero!*

Look for the deals each day on the front page of Steam. Or follow us on twitter or Facebook for instant notifications wherever you are!

*Offer ends Wednesday at 10AM Pacific Time
Kentucky Route Zero

"Your choices matter" is a refrain repeated again and again in the marketing campaigns of dozens upon dozens of narrative-driven games. Like most things with video games, it's the promise of scale and scope. The more variances that can occur, the more drastic the consequences, the more the game is seen as a success. The recently released Detroit: Become Human promoted itself on this basis, touting huge choices and variations. True enough, the game can play out with drastic differences. The problem is that no matter what way it played out, I felt nothing.

I'll wager that the most meaningful decisions you've had in these kind of games, the ones that really moved you, were the smaller choices. Not whether you saved the entire galaxy in Mass Effect but whether you rescued your good buddy Garrus from giving in to vengeful bloodlust. Not who rules the world's kingdoms by the end of The Witcher 3 but whether you took the time to bond with your adopted daughter Ciri, to help her grow as a person.

With that in mind I think Kentucky Route Zero is the game that really points the way forward on "meaningful" choices. It follows a delivery truck driver named Conway as he's pulled into an increasingly surreal world beneath Kentucky. See, it takes a completely different approach to choice. It doesn't have big branching narratives. Instead the choices you make are largely contained within a scene. Some carry on throughout the game's episodes (only four of five have been released) but don't change the direction of the plot. Take, for instance, the first choice it gives the player. What's the name of Conway's faithful canine companion? No matter what name you choose it doesn't change anything that follows. But does it change how you feel about that dog? Damn right.

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Kentucky Route Zero - (Brendan Caldwell)


This is Brendan, broadcasting live from rumour world, where everything is made of a nebulous candy floss-like substance. The locals call it hope. Amid this sticky cloud, a figure has formed. It s Geralt of Rivia, hero of popular Gwent spin-off, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. The monster-hunting swordsman will make an appearance in another game later this year, according to CD Projekt Red community lead Marcin Momot. Some have asserted that he’ll be a guest character in upcoming fighting game Soul Calibur VI. Which makes sense given the close business ties between the Polish studio and Japanese publisher Namco Bandai.

It isn’t confirmed. But it does raise the question: who else deserves a place on the stage of history? I asked the RPS treehouse who they d like to see. Here s the list we all settled on. (more…)


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