It takes some real detective work to figure out the mystery that is Zenless Zone Zero, the upcoming action (roguelike?) game from Genshin Impact developer MiHoYo.
A Persona-style calendar icon showed up in the latest trailer for the game during Gamescom Opening Night Live. Different times of day seem to affect which characters will be hanging out in its urban environments. You can choose to chill with them and presumably earn their trust, but I have no clue what it has to do with the roguelike parts of the game. Maybe it’ll unlock new attacks or outfits to wear.
The middle of the brief trailer focuses on playable arcade minigames that resemble classics like Dig Dug and Snake. Maybe you will get to play these for bonus rewards when you’re not taking on missions to fight with your crew.
Once the trailer finally gets to the arena action, it’s already almost over. MiHoYo kills it every time with its slick combat animations. Characters smoothly dodge out of attacks and light up the screen as they parry the gigantic rock monsters. Much like Genshin, you can instantly swap between a group of characters to exploit enemy weaknesses and create powerful combo attacks. This is also where the character pulling gacha mechanics come in—which the trailer makes no mention of either.
And that’s it. The new ZZZ trailer doesn’t even gesture at how you go on missions inside alternate dimensions called Hollows, which are the procedurally generated roguelike dungeons that were available in its last beta. Until I can actually play the thing, my best guess is that it sounds like it’ll work like a 3D anime Hades.
MiHoYo floored me with Honkai: Star Rail earlier this year. The turn-based sci-fi comedy game did a stellar job at giving MiHoYo’s stylish combat a stage. ZZZ’s overall structure remains unclear, but it carries forward the same tight combat from all of the developer’s games. I’m extremely here for it and desperate to see way more than a minute-long trailer can show me.
ZZZ doesn’t have a release date. Its previous beta was available last May. I’d expect it to have one final beta, like Honkai: Star Rail did, sometime this year and potentially launch soon after. If it’s not out soon and MiHoYo continues to keep its cards close to its chest, I’m going to lose my mind trying to fit all these pieces together.