Percentile Rank

Katana Zero is ranked in the 92nd percentile of games scored on OpenCritic.

Rating Summary

Based on 64 critic reviews
Mighty Man

OpenCritic Rating

84

Top Critic Average

85%

Critics Recommend

Based on 64 critic reviews

Score Distribution

Unscored Reviews

Polygon
Unscored
Unscored
Apr 18, 2019

It’s a cynical and sometimes ugly story told with unusual warmth and sincerity.

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Player2.net.au
A or higher
A or higher
Apr 21, 2019

A Puzzle game masquerading as a 16-bit action title, Katana Zero is a thing of beauty that surprises and impresses from start to finish. A must buy game.

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Eurogamer
Recommended
Recommended
Apr 26, 2019

Stylish and punishing, this is a darkly compelling treat.

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GameOctane
A or higher
A or higher
May 21, 2019

Katana Zero looked fun to me when I first saw it announced and I thought it might end up being a fairly shallow experience but I'm glad to be entirely wrong. This game pulled me in for hours at a time with its world and story and I can't recommend it enough if action platformers are your thing.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun
Unscored
Unscored
Jun 25, 2019

For all its hurried stabbing and spilled blood, Katana Zero is a beautiful game, from the juicy text boxes onwards.

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Scored Reviews

Screen Rant
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO, a time-warping samurai escapade, boasts stunning visuals, music, mechanics, and writing. It's one of 2019's best games thus far.

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OnlySP
Apr 17, 2019

Katana ZERO is far better than what should be expected of an action-platformer. The gameplay is incredibly rewarding and challenging in all the best ways, and the combat never ceases to portray the power the player has. As the main character fights for what he is told to do and to solve the lingering questions, the game does an amazing job of showing the folly of the character and even growth he goes through. Between the combination of story and gameplay, as well as a multitude of features unique in the genre, Katana ZERO stands above all others.

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GameSpace
9.5 / 10.0
GameSpace
Brandedwolf

Top Critic

9.5 / 10.0
May 30, 2019

Overall Katana Zero is not only a great action platformer but also a game with a solid story that will leave you wanting more. Well worth buying to get that fix for your time bending katana wielding noir story needs. Katana Zero is available on Steam for $14.99 USD.

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Level Down Games
9.5 / 10.0
9.5 / 10.0
Apr 22, 2019

Katana ZERO is a modern masterpiece with a nearly perfect aesthetic. The graphics are beautifully rendered and animated, the music masterfully composed, and the gameplay tight and satisfying. Almost every moment of this game is used meaningfully and, despite its overall relatively short play time, leaves you with a full story with enough twists and turns that keep you playing to the end and ultimately leave you satisfied.

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Niche Gamer
9.5 / 10.0
9.5 / 10.0
Apr 21, 2019

All considered, Katana Zero will set you back the price of a good meal, while being more fulfilling than than certain AAA studios’ safe and bland attempts for over double that price. In the words of Katana Zero itself: Yes, that should work

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PowerUp!
9.2 / 10.0
9.2 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

If you liked Hotline Miami, prepare to fall in love with Katana Zero. Imbued with a hard-edged 1980s aesthetic, it offers players a dense, well-written story coupled with fast-paced, blood-soaked action that’s rewarding and satisfying.

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The Digital Fix
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 28, 2019

Katana Zero was a pleasant surprise. I did not expect the emotional roller coaster I was about to embark on. It ticks all the boxes; great soundtrack, great gameplay, a well told story. I don't think there are enough words to explain how much I enjoyed this one. It is easily my favorite game of the year so far and I suggest you play it.

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We Got This Covered
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero is a singular piece of art, with an earnest intensity rarely seen in gaming. Moving, exciting, and beautiful, it's something best left played rather than explained.

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GameMAG
9 / 10
GameMAG

Top Critic

9 / 10
Apr 29, 2019

Katana ZERO, an amazing action game with a nice story and a great soundtrack, is a breath of fresh air in the indie scene.

Review in Russian | Read full review

Atomix
90 / 100
90 / 100
Apr 29, 2019

Katana Zero has been a surprise for everyone since it always kept a low profile and in the midst of the number of high level pitches that we have is able to carve a niche and get up as one of the best games so far this year. Perhaps its biggest problem comes in the sense of the duration that does not end up being exact to obtain the development of the whole plot and that certainly can be exploited more. Otherwise it is an indispensable this month and perhaps this year because without much pretension shows that the heart of a video game is in what is in itself and nothing more.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

GameSpew
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 26, 2019

Even with its lack of replayability, you should buy Katana Zero right now if you’re a fan of action games with great tales to tell. When its thumping music kicks in, you know it’s time for action of the highest calibre. And married with sumptuous pixel art and a mystery you can’t wait to unravel, it’s a match made in heaven. Katana Zero is hands down one of the best games released this year.

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Destructoid
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 30, 2019

There is far more I can say about how much I love this game, including the audial delight that is Ludowic and Bill Kiley's soundtrack or VHS visual tricks the game employs as the narrative grows more fractured, but at this point, I've already gushed enough. It can be frustrating at times. It made me want to break my Switch in half. But even in its most aggressively exasperating moments, Katana Zero remains bleak, beautiful, bloody, and brilliant.

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GameSkinny
Apr 19, 2019

If I have one complaint about Katana ZERO, it's that there's not already a sequel.

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Cultured Vultures
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO is pixelated samurai bliss, delivering one of the most impressively polished narrative and gameplay experiences of the year.

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NintendoWorldReport
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

In so many aspects I was left wanting more. I want to play more as the secondary character, I want to understand the story better, and in so many cases I just want to know what the hell is going on. Katana Zero is such a wild drug-crazed adventure that I just can't get enough of and I will continue to be getting my fix of it for weeks to come.

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TechRaptor
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero's gameplay is genuinely fantastic. It's the perfect choice for someone looking for the next frantic and challenging indie darling.

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DualShockers
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero ties an incredibly dark and thrilling narrative directly into fast and deep gameplay to create one of the best games of the year.

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USgamer
Apr 18, 2019

Be the ultimate badass and kill your enemies in slow-motion. There are a lot of games that try to be like Hotline Miami, moving from area-to-area murdering with sheer ruthlessness, but few games match the execution and style like Katana Zero. Great pixel art, a wonderful use of color, and fantastic synthwave soundtrack. From start to finish, it's a fever dream worth having.

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TheSixthAxis
9 / 10
9 / 10
May 1, 2019

Katana Zero is an incredibly stylish title, from the great looking pixel art to the fantastic soundtrack that accompanies the fast and brutal action. You really get to feel like you're a master swordsman as you overcome the challenges put before you, or die trying.

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Pure Nintendo
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
May 13, 2019

If you're in the market for a fast paced, action packed platformer then Katana Zero should be on your list. The gameplay is awesome, the music is great and I really like the art style! I highly recommend checking it out.

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Nintendo Life
9 / 10
9 / 10
Apr 18, 2019

If you haven’t gleaned it already from reading up to this point, Katana Zero is unmistakably a game that you need to add to your Switch collection at earliest opportunity.

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Nintendo Enthusiast
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 24, 2019

Katana Zero is super cool where it counts with very little faltering it.

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FingerGuns
9 / 10
9 / 10
Apr 17, 2019

Katana Zero is simply a very easy recommendation. From the utterly perfect mechanics tweaked to an inch of their life to the visuals, the overarching story and inner conflict of your highly skilled protagonist and his external relationships with the world around him, counteracting with the hyper-violence he calls his work, the game finds a delicate balance between ridiculously stylish action and the more subtle downbeat moments that really bring out some wonderful character development.

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Gaming Nexus
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO is a game I've been interested in from the moment I saw the trailer for it and once again Devolver Digital and Askiisoft didn't disappoint.  From the nice graphics and awesome music, to the  fluid controls and the engaging story with different ways to respond to dialogue and take out enemies in each area, Katana ZERO was an enjoyable game from start to finish, even with the story getting a little bonkers after several stages.  Then again, it's that bit of craziness that kept things interesting throughout the game and I'm perfectly okay with that.

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The Games Machine
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Apr 24, 2019

Katana ZERO is a stylish action platformer with a deep and engaging story.

Review in Italian | Read full review

Gamersky
8.8 / 10.0
Gamersky
金闪闪老里

Top Critic

8.8 / 10.0
May 8, 2019

Katana ZERO flings you into a challenging playground with intense battles and tricky time control skills. The story is a bit plain but still acceptable.

Review in Chinese | Read full review

COGconnected
88 / 100
88 / 100
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero kicked me into a bloody pulp, but I’m compelled to continue regardless. If not for the challenge, then for my raw hunger to soak in every scrap of this exceptional story. Don’t sleep on this one, friends.

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Everyeye.it
9 / 10
9 / 10
Apr 23, 2019

You'll probably come for the brutal, unrelenting and deeply satisfying action, but eventually it's the original and fascinating narrative side that will win you over: simply put, Katana ZERO is the surprise hit of 2019.

Review in Italian | Read full review

IGN
8.7 / 10.0
8.7 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero's adrenaline pumping action is incredible and its presentation is stellar, but its story feels cut short.

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Spaziogames
8.7 / 10.0
Spaziogames
DottorKillex

Top Critic

8.7 / 10.0
Apr 27, 2019

Do not absolutely miss out on Katana ZERO if you like stylish action games and mature plots. Heck, don't miss out on Katana ZERO in any case: this is one of the best indie titles of the year, and Nintendo Switch seems the perfect home for it

Review in Italian | Read full review

IGN Italy
8.7 / 10.0
8.7 / 10.0
Apr 24, 2019

Katana Zero is a fast paced action game which shines thanks to its smooth, brilliant and clever gameplay, while a surprisingly good writing gives to the game an unexpected depth. It's a brand new take on the classic genre mechanics, made even cooler thanks to a lovely art style and a powerful soundtrack.

Review in Italian | Read full review

Geeks Under Grace
8.5 / 10.0
8.5 / 10.0
May 10, 2019

Katana ZERO is an outstanding, though unfinished, samurai slasher.

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GameGrin
8.5 / 10.0
8.5 / 10.0
May 11, 2019

Weighing in at over five hours, it's not the longest game you'll ever play, but it's wide open for replayability, and the story is great.

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Worth Playing
8.5 / 10.0
8.5 / 10.0
May 22, 2019

Katana Zero is a mesmerizing title. The narrative twists and turns in odd ways, and the payoff is both open and satisfying. The action is crisp if you can commit everything to memory well enough to create small, bloody masterpieces. With a familiar yet attractive presentation, Kata Zero feels right at home on the indie-loving machine that is the Nintendo Switch.

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Oyungezer Online
8.3 / 10.0
8.3 / 10.0
Apr 22, 2019

Whether you're an action-lover or prefer story-based games, you definitely should give Katana Zero a chance.

Review in Turkish | Read full review

Hobby Consolas
82 / 100
82 / 100
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO it's a beautiful and speedy action game that made interesting choices, both in mechanics and narrative... but is falls short in lenght and always left the feeling that it could have gone even farther, with some mechanics not used at full. The 12 levels left 6-7 gameplay hours as much, but it's kinda replayable thanks to the decissions.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

GameSpot
8 / 10
GameSpot
captionbarbosa

Top Critic

8 / 10
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero's excellent writing, stylish and thoughtful combat, and gorgeous artwork make its unsatisfyingly short journey well worth taking.

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Metro GameCentral
8 / 10
8 / 10
Apr 30, 2019

An elegant blend of 2D action and cyberpunk storytelling, that manages to make a very distinctive experience out of some very familiar indie tropes.

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Saudi Gamer
4 / 5.0
4 / 5.0
Apr 25, 2019

Despite its scattered story, Katana Zero is a thrilling action game with a fast style that makes you parched for more.

Review in Arabic | Read full review

Saving Content
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO is really fantastic at providing mind-bending, reality altering sequences both in gameplay and story. While I never felt like I knew where things were going, it ultimately falls short of greatness by the end. With nothing more than a tease and a wink, the game ends, feeling unfinished with too much of a setup to continue via DLC or a sequel. That said, Katana ZERO is absolutely a worthwhile slashction platformer that does unexpected things with its story to make this a must play.

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Gamer Escape
8 / 10
8 / 10
Apr 18, 2019

While I can’t say I like that the game feels like it’s hiding its true conclusion behind future DLC, the package that we have right now is still damn fun to play through. If you’re not averse to some over-the-top violence, Katana Zero is definitely a game worth checking out.

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IGN Spain
8 / 10.0
8 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

A unique proposal as fun as interesting despite it falls too short and sometimes is too hard even for experienced players.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

Explosion Network
8 / 10
8 / 10
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO is an ultra-violent, samurai slashing neon-soaked mystery that's best played in one sitting, akin to a binge-worthy anime.

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TrueGaming
8 / 10.0
TrueGaming

Top Critic

8 / 10.0
Apr 22, 2019

Katana Zero is more recommended to you if you value execution and quality over size and content. it is a short game, but narrative is surprisingly strong and gameplay mechanics are excellent.

Review in Arabic | Read full review

Easy Allies
8 / 10.0
Easy Allies
Bradley Ellis

Top Critic

8 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019
Katana Zero - Easy Allies Review - YouTube video thumbnail
Gameblog
8 / 10
8 / 10
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO is magnificent action game with a fantastic atmosphere. Its story and characters are as sharp as its gameplay, that offers some true puzzling moments wondering how to kill efficiently, by using a very useful slow-motion mechanic. Unfortunately, at the time we're done with it, as it is a very compelling experience, we're still hungry. Let's hope for a sequel. Quick.

Review in French | Read full review

Shacknews
8 / 10
8 / 10
Apr 18, 2019

Overall, Katana Zero is an inspired effort.

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GamingTrend
80 / 100
80 / 100
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero is a game that I loved playing, but I walked away from it with some major reservations. On top of its tight, excellent swordplay, fun time-shifting powers, and pitch-perfect soundtrack, Katana Zero packs some interesting storytelling tricks that I wasn't expecting. On the other hand, it uses its innovative structure to tell a story rife with ill-conceived takes on disturbing subject matter without a content warning in sight. Katana Zero is an extraordinarily fun experience for the few hours it lasts, but the bad taste it left in my mouth lingered much longer.

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PC Gamer
79 / 100
79 / 100
Apr 30, 2019

Thoughtfully-designed levels and versatile combat abilities make Katana Zero worthy of a rewind despite cookie-cutter characters.

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Game Informer
7.8 / 10.0
7.8 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero starts strong on all fronts, but it doesn't evolve or cohere in ways that sustain the excitement of its early stages

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Nintendo Times
7.5 / 10.0
7.5 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

GOOD - Katana Zero slashes onto the Switch with breakneck action sequences that will have the player striving for perfection despite its high difficulty. Turn the volume up and zone out to the tunes of the ‘80s and enjoy a nice throwback to the decade that popularized action flicks and cyberpunk futures.

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New Game Network
73 / 100
73 / 100
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO proves that the Hotline Miami formula still works as a side-scroller, but mechanical missteps and narrative blunders hamper the game's otherwise excellent combat and enticing story.

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AnaitGames
7 / 10
7 / 10
Apr 28, 2019

Katana Zero is a very interesting first chapter of a bigger story that may be explored in future games —as well as its gameplay, simple yet well executed although it could be further explored in a sequel or DLC.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

Hardcore Gamer
3.5 / 5.0
3.5 / 5.0
Apr 26, 2019

The fact that a game of this stature manages to carve out a narrative and tone that is as intriguing and as inviting as it is says a lot about Askiisoft's skill in world-building here.

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Digital Chumps
7 / 10.0
7 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero's blade isn't sharp enough to cut through its self-indulgent idiosyncrasy. Inventive action sequences that neatly divide improvisation and orchestration and a novel time-rewinding mechanic both suffer under an overwrought style miserably impressed with its own posture. Katana Zero works best when it's not auditioning to change its title to Edge Lords.

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Attack of the Fanboy
Apr 18, 2019

Katana Zero is a fantastic 2D action game, it's a great stealth game, and it has an interesting story and universe. The action is fast, fluid, and will have you coming back for more over and over again. But this is just a taste of what could be.

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Handsome Phantom
6 / 10.0
6 / 10.0
Apr 18, 2019

Katana ZERO is a game that has a lot going for it. The visual style, music, branching dialogue options, and unique time bending abilities certainly separate it from the crowded pack of 2D side scrolling indie action games. Unfortunately, this isn’t enough to save it from repetitive and aggravating game play.

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Game Revolution
Apr 18, 2019

All of this leads to Katana Zero being a tough game to enthusiastically recommend. If you can ignore gameplay flaws and focus on style, you might fall in love with its VHS trappings. However, if you want something beyond style, if you want an interesting interactive tale or a precise action game, you should look elsewhere.

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Gameplanet
6 / 10.0
Gameplanet
Oliver Grainger

Top Critic

6 / 10.0
Jul 11, 2019

Katana Zero looks fantastic and has fun fast paced combat, unfortunately the combat is broken up with a confusing and convoluted story. It was all over too quickly, but for people who want more, a dialogue system provides replayability.

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