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Abzû is a game about exploring an underwater environment. The player's character looks like a diver and can be freely moved around the 3D environment, along with free camera rotation. It is possible to swim in any direction, break through the surface and do a flip, explore the bottom with a headlight turned on automatically when it gets dark and so on. Next to a separate button for acceleration, there is a short boost function with three tiers to get a short burst of extra speed. Next to the interactive tutorial there are no prompts or HUD elements that explain goals. The diver has an unlimited supply of air.

The diver gets to explore different self-contained areas linked together by passages. These are all filled with different types of fish and interaction is possible by swimming through them. There is also a type of ecosystem as some will feed off others. The player's character cannot die and at times small environment based puzzles need to be completed to progress to the next area. Sometimes drones can be freed that swim along. These open up certain passages and the diver can interact with them through a sound, but this has no further function. Optional elements include locating places where additional fish types can be freed and collecting hidden shells. The game encourages the meditative element of the game to sit back and enjoy the environment as certain statues can be located where a meditation function can be activated. While meditating the diver is no longer controlled, but the player moves around the camera, following and watching the fishes in the environment.

No background information is provided at the start, but the story of a civilization in the ocean is unveiled gradually through elements in the background and there is a progress system based on bringing orbs to temples. Sometimes there are also different sections, locking the diver to a 2D plane or taking away some parts of movement and limited camera actions to swim along giant creatures, avoiding mine-like objects, gliding in a jetstream with other fish. At times it is possible to cling to larger creatures and hitch rides.


Abzû Windows More of the story is revealed through pictures such as these.
Abzû Windows Breaking through the surface on the back of the shark.
Abzû Windows One of the rare moments when you are out of the water.
Abzû Windows Gliding through a fast jetstream.

Promo Images

Abzû Screenshot
Abzû Screenshot
Abzû Screenshot
Abzû Screenshot


Alternate Titles

  • "アブズ" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Fascinating but ultimately unsatisfying PlayStation 4 cycologist (6)

Critic Reviews

Common Sense Media Windows 2016 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
MondoXbox Xbox One Dec 06, 2016 9.5 out of 10 95 PlayStation 4 Aug 10, 2016 9 out of 10 90
Adventure Gamers Windows Aug 19, 2016 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
GameSpot Windows Aug 02, 2016 9 out of 10 90
Way Too Many Games Nintendo Switch Dec 03, 2018 8.5 out of 10 85
GamesRadar PlayStation 4 Aug 02, 2016 4 out of 5 80
Gamer's Palace Nintendo Switch Feb 26, 2021 69 out of 100 69
FNintendo Nintendo Switch Jan 17, 2019 5 out of 10 50
Gameplay (Benelux) Nintendo Switch Dec 21, 2018 Unscored Unscored


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  • The Game Awards
    • 2016 – Best Art Direction – Nominated
  • Steam Awards
    • 2016 — The 'Sit Back and Relax' Award — Nominated
    • 2017 — The 'The World Is Grim Enough Let's Just All Get Along' Award — Nominated

Related Web Sites

Contributed to by Rik Hideto (461269), Kennyannydenny (126799) and Sciere (779983)
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