Devolver Digital and Pastagames have announced KarmaZoo, an upcoming side-scrolling co-op game that will see up to 10 players working alongside one another for the sake of claiming one all-powerful ingredient: Karma. Turns out, it'll be heading to consoles and PC at some point in 2023. And if all goes according to plan, then technically it should be arriving at some stage this summer. At least, that's according to Pastagames, anyway.
So, what more do you really need to know about it, besides the fact that it's due a loose summer launch? Well, here's everything we've been able to gather on the project based on the details Devolver Digital has supplied so far. KarmaZoo: just what is it, exactly, and why should it make your wishlist this year?
What Is KarmaZoo?
KarmaZoo is an upcoming online-only multiplayer game by Pastagames. Joined by up to nine other users from around the world, you will venture forth and tackle a series of increasingly challenging tasks, all in the hopes of accruing that one blissful resource known as Karma. However, in order to make ends meet, you will need to learn how to cooperate with your teammates, and ultimately put their struggles alongside your own to progress deeper into The Loop. The kinder you are, and the more you take others' needs into your own hands, the more Karma you earn. Simple, really.
Going by what its creators say, “KarmaZoo is about helping people, working together, and finding bliss in cooperation — especially when things go wrong. Make meaningful connections with completely random players online as they are all striving alongside you to earn the most precious resource of all: Karma.”
Judging from the looks of the blurb, KarmaZoo will place you and up to 10 other players in a never-ending session known as The Loop. It's within this so-called Loop that you, playing as one of 50 characters, each with a unique ability to boot, will endure the trials that it hosts. Your goal: to earn Karma, even if it means sacrificing yourself for the greater good.
In other words: “The Loop is where you’ll join a team of up to 10 random players around the world. Together, you’ll tackle a series of increasingly challenging levels that adapt to the size of your team, the characters you play and the perks you pick together. No two runs are quite the same when the players and the game itself are changing!”
So, what is The Loop, and why is it that you and a bunch of randomly selected players have to face its grueling challenges? Well, that's just it — we don't actually know. Either way, the purpose of the game is abundantly clear; it's all about gaining that sweet, sweet Karma—even if it kills you. And judging from the description, an honourable death goes a lot further than an unlawful one.
It's a side-scrolling game at heart, so expect copious amounts of puzzle-platforming elements that will require multiple players to solve. Outside of that, it's all about aiding your neighbors and using your own abilities to help nudge them in the right direction. So, kindness and comradery are encouraged here, and it'll pay to remain loyal for all the while you fight the same battles.
“Stick together, use your character’s strengths, and even sacrifice yourself because helping one another is essential in the Loop’s deadly challenges,” the description elaborates. “Every good thing you do, one way or another, earns you the sweet Karma you’ll use to unlock new characters and abilities for future Loops.”
Besides The Loop, KarmaZoo will also host a range of mini-games, all of which can be enjoyed by up to 8 players in its split-screen local co-op mode. It'll also feature cross-play, along with 22 languages, meaning everyone around the world can invite themselves to the party and unite under one banner.
Pastagames, a studio best known for its involvement with Rayman Legends, Rayman Mini, and Arkanoid: Eternal Battle, first announced its intention to bring the multiplayer chapter to consoles and PC on April 20, 2023. Since making the formal announcement, the studio has kept its devlog updated through its Discord channel, which you can follow for additional information and patch notes here.
Just to confirm, KarmaZoo will be built with cross-play in mind, meaning both console and PC users will have the chance to play together, and in a multitude of languages, too. So, rest assured that Pastagames has just about every base covered as far as accessibility goes.
Devolver Digital and Pastagames did in fact release a trailer for KarmaZoo earlier this week. And while it didn't quite touch base on the game's actual release date, it did paint the general aesthetic of the gameplay and setting surprisingly well. Need we say more? You can check it out for yourself in the video embedded above.
Release Date, Platforms & Editions
KarmaZoo will be coming to Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 5, Switch, and PC via Steam in Q3 2023. It hasn't been said yet whether or not it'll head to ex-gen consoles, though it does seem unlikely at this moment in time. If an Xbox One or PlayStation 4 port does come knocking, then chances are it'll hit the shelves in early 2024. Don't quote us on that, though.
Right now, there are no deluxe editions or pre-order bonuses to pick up outside of the run-of-the-mill copy on consoles and PC. Is this likely to change? Who knows. However, if Devolver Digital does have something up its sleeve, then it's sure to be revealed over the next two months, ideally before its Q3 release.
If you're interested in staying in The Loop, then you can join the game's official Discord server here. If anything interesting pops up ahead of its summer launch, then we'll be sure to fill you in on all the key details right here on gaming.net.
So, what's your take? Will you be picking up a copy of KarmaZoo when it releases later this year? Let us know your thoughts over on our socials here.