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Phantom Blade Zero
Image via S-GAME

Phantom Blade Zero Is Not A Soulslike, Confirms Game Director

No respawning enemies either!

A new trailer for Phantom Blade Zero dropped at Summer Game Fest 2024 along with a playable demo available at the event. Like other upcoming action games, Phantom Blade Zero shares some similarities with Soulslike titles, leading many to believe it’s of the same genre. However, in a Q&A, the game director confirmed that Phantom Blade Zero is not a soulslike title despite speculation suggesting it is.

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The official Twitter page of Phantom Blade Zero shared an image with a Q&A with the game’s director, Soulframe. He addressed multiple queries that players have had since the original reveal including the legitimacy of the footage shown, its platforms, and genre.

Described by the team as a stylish kungfu punk, the director expanded on the genre with the following answer to “Another Soulslike?”

As of now, those have tried the demo should have a solid idea that it’s not a soulslike game. It’s worth stressing again that “making another soulslike” was never part of the plan. We want combo-driven, heart-pumping combat that is hectic, rewarding, and exhilarating. We did take inspiration from soulslike games, such as multi-layered maps, multiple approach paths, and hidden nooks and crevices, but the similarities stop there. There will be difficulty options, and you won’t have to face respawned mobs after you die or interact with checkpoints.

Soulframe – Game Director, Phantom Blade Zero

So, while the level design and exploration are certainly inspired by Souls titles, the combat and difficulty aren’t. Additionally, the inclusion of difficulty options means that players will be able to tweak the experience to their liking to some degree. This is closer to something like Devil May Cry, and Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance rather than Nioh, or Sekiro.

Multiple hands-on experiences have been planned throughout 2024 and Phantom Blade Zero will be available at the following events.

  • ChinaJoy – Shanghai – July 26 – July 29
  • Gamescom – Cologne – August 21 – August 25
  • Tokyo Game Show – Tokyo – September 28 – September 29

At the moment, an online demo is not planned due to the current stage of development. A release date for Phantom Blade Zero still hasn’t been announced, but it’s likely coming out in 2025.

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Image of Ali Hashmi
Ali Hashmi
Ali has been writing about video games for the past six years and is always on the lookout for the next indie game to obsess over and recommend to everyone in sight. When he isn't spending an unhealthy amount of time in Slay the Spire, he's probably trying out yet another retro-shooter or playing Dark Souls for the 50th time.