Ikai Offers A Haunting Approach To Feudal Japan


Less than a few hours deep into setting up this new site for Steam coverage, and already I’m overwhelmed by the number of games on offer – Ikai being one of them.

Not something you’re likely to see on the Nintendo Switch anytime, due to the trouser-filling content, Ikai is a first-person psychological horror set in feudal Japan that’s likely to send any Japanonphile into meltdown mode.

Developer, Endflame, aren’t too concerned about keeping you up at night as the game explores the various spirits in Japanese folklore – notably the yokai.

But Yokai-Watch, this isn’t.

Ikai - Wabi sabi
Wabi sabi. Look it up. Source: PR

Japan always betrays on the surface this kawaii demeanour, but scratch the surface even slightly and you’ll see another side that will make you question whether Pikachu has alternative motives than to help you capture other ‘cute monsters’.

Spoiler: he wants your soul.

Just having a look at the opening trailer makes me regret starting this news piece as I’m intrigued by Endflame’s approach, but equally questioning the density of my kintama.

Here are a number of the features you can expect to see in Ikai:

  • Experience the horror of old superstitions by the hand of Yokai’s (Japanese folklore’s monsters, ghosts and spirits)
  • Explore a haunted medieval shrine
  • Stay calm under pressure to write protective seals with brush and ink
  • Be silent, do not disturb the evil

And if we believe that sharing is caring, let me share with you the Ikai trailer that has me filling my pants:

No release date yet, but as I won’t be sleeping for the next few months, I’m bound to be one of the first to let you know when it’s available on Steam.

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