Lo-Fi Games’ Kenshi is the impressive and immersive sandbox action RPG. Similar to other open-world survival sandbox games such as Ark: Survival Evolved or Rust, Kenshi is an open-ended free-roaming game with virtually no limits placed on the player beyond their own imagination. The title is played from a third-person perspective and can have the camera zoomed-out to give proceedings more of a real-time strategy lean should players choose to do so.
Developer Chris Hunt began work on Kenshi in 2006, and the game was finally released in 2018. The twelve years of development proved fruitful as it has an “Overwhelmingly Positive” rating on Steam. Hunt describes Kenshi as “Sword-Punk,” a mix of post-apocalyptic environments with classic Samurai and Ronin tales from Japanese history and folklore. Upon release, the game performed well with critics and garnered positive reviews, and its reputation and fan community have only continued to grow since.
Kenshi has been compared to other survival sandbox games like the legendary Dwarf Fortress. Its trademarks are punishing gameplay and a large, open-ended world where the game is actively trying to thwart the player. In addition to the massive environment, players can completely customize their character’s personality, appearance, and role within the game’s world.
The basic premise of Kenshi‘s gameplay is that you are a lone wanderer in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. However, even that summary is limiting when compared to the potential depth that the game provides players. The title describes itself as a “free-roaming, squad-based RPG”. While there is some truth to that descriptor, the real heart of Kenshi is the freedom that it affords players to craft their own tale within the game. Players can explore all of the nearly 900 square kilometers of Kenshi‘s wasteland solo, or squad up with friends.
During their journey, players will come across any number of seemingly insurmountable odds. It is these difficult circumstances that hone the player from a beginner to a warlord. The world of Kenshi is unforgiving and survival is difficult, making the early hours of the game incredibly strenuous and slow-going. The player begins with absolutely no skills and must struggle to survive. Through these struggles, though, the player eventually gains enough power and influence to build their own village, should they desire to do so.
Combat takes place from either a traditional “over-the-shoulder” third-person perspective or from a zoomed-out RTS-style view. During combat, players can sever the limbs of others or potentially lose their own. The loss of limbs is permanent, and players must adapt to their new circumstances following a difficult battle. Each biome in the world is different, with varying flora and fauna and even different soil types that impact the success of settlements. As in-game events occur and affect both player characters and non-player characters, the game reacts accordingly and creates new World States that might see the rise of a new town or faction.
Kenshi Main Characters
The post-apocalyptic wasteland in which Kenshi takes place is massive and full of life, both player and AI-controlled. As a result, there are hundreds of potential characters that the player might encounter in one single playthrough. Additionally, there are more than a hundred different playable characters to choose from when starting. Kenshi does feature some unique and notable NPCs that have World States tied to their existence. Some of the main characters in the game include:
- Agnu: Agnu is a notable and unique recruit that can join the player after being freed from the top floor of the Tower of Abuse. They are the only recruitable Solderbot in the game.
- Beep: Another unique recruit, Beep is a Worker Drone found in the Mongrel region. He has unique lines of dialogue when in the presence of Agnu.
- Bugmaster: The Bugmaster is a dangerous enemy that serves as the leader of the Spiders’ faction. He is surrounded by an army of Spiders and is considered one of the pinnacle endgame enemies.
- Emperor Tengu: Tengu is the leader of the United Cities and owner of the strongest katana in the world of Kenshi. Players can speak to Tengu and receive requests from him if allied with the United Cities.
- Holy Lord Phoenix: Phoenix is the leader of the Holy Nation and a cruel one at that. He has a bounty placed on his head form the United Cities but is surrounded by a powerful entourage. His death or deposition can cause major World State changes.
- Mad Cat-Lon: Mad Cat-Lon is one of the most powerful characters in the entire game and will attack the player immediately following his introduction. He commands 120 Stormthralls during battle and is the leader of the Second Empire Exile faction.
- Tinfist: Tinfist is another Skeleton (the game’s humanoid robots) who is a skilled martial artist. A defiant anti-slaver, he has an active bounty from all factions that are pro-slavery.
Games in the Kenshi Series
To date, Kenshi is a lone game and is the only game from developer LoFi Games and founder Chris Hunt. However, LoFi recently announced it was hard at work on a sequel, indicating that Kenshi 2 is on the way at some point. Games in the series include:
- Kenshi (2018)
- Kenshi 2 (In Development)
It’s true that Kenshi can be an oppressively tough game, leading many to search out cheats for help in the game’s difficult moments. A command console exists within the game (which you can open by pressing Shift+F12) but it requires significant tinkering with the game’s files. Essentially, the command console is more a development tool than a true cheat enablement. Still, there are several excellent mods created by the community in addition to cheat trainers.
Like many other PC games, Kenshi has a cheat trainer available through WeMod that scans and uploads the cheats to the game’s files after downloading and installing the WeMod software. Click here for the cheat trainer for Kenshi. The trainer contains the following cheats:
- Unlimited Health Body Parts
- Unlimited Blood
- No Hunger
- Unlimited Store Items
- Fast Research
- Instant Material Production
- Instant Construction
- Unlimited Money
- Unlimited Carry Weight
- Select Player Stat
- Custom Stat Value
Start From Scratch Cheat
One of the best early game cheats for Kenshi is also one of the easiest to implement. Many players might wish to start from scratch after a few hours into their first playthrough, but they don’t want to lose all the gear they’ve accumulated or any settlements they’ve built. To restart with a new character while retaining all your progress, simply import your old save into a new game. This will allow you to start with any items, your squad, your base, and anything in storage.
Kenshi Cheat FAQs
How to cheat money in Kenshi?
Using the FCS (the backend construction tool that allows players to mod the game), open your save file. Under “Changes List”, open “Camera” and edit the player’s money to whatever value you wish. Note: any amount over 50,000,000 will cause instability and crashes.
Can you spawn items in Kenshi?
To spawn items, players will need to know the filename for that item and can then add it into their save file using the FCS. The FCS is the development tool embedded in the game files for Kenshi and is easily accessed.
How do you open the cheat menu in Kenshi?
Players will open the command console using Shift+F12 but will need to have implemented changes to the game files using the FCS before using the command console. It is less of a “cheat menu” and more of a developer mode for the game. Cheats to the game must be implemented in the game’s files using the FCS.