Kenshi is a role-playing video game developed and published by Lo-Fi Games for Windows. The game focuses on providing sandbox gameplay features that give the player freedom to do what they want in its world instead of focusing on a linear story. Kenshi’s development was primarily led by a single person over the course of twelve years, and it was released on December 6, 2018. Kenshi takes place in a post-post-apocalyptic setting and allows characters to be a thief, a trader, or a myriad of other options. The game has received mostly positive reviews from critics, who have commented on its depth, its MMO-style gameplay, and its difficulty.

Kenshi is an open world role-playing video game with real-time strategy elements that has no linear narrative. It takes place in a post-apocalyptic fantasy setting, where it is incredibly difficult for life to survive. The player starts out with no skills and struggles to survive in the early stages of the game. Skills are leveled up through doing actions, such as leveling up thievery by stealing items, and the player can recruit other units to grow their squad. The player can recruit characters from numerous different factions and species to join their squad, and can eventually build a town themselves. As part of the damage system, limbs can be severed or damaged individually as well. Kenshi has many non-player locations, of sizes ranging from a single building to large cities. The game includes a world states system which creates reactions to deaths of notable people. These reactions to power vacuums can result in new locations spawning or in towns being taken over by new factions. Zones in Kenshi are not just aesthetic, as they have specific soil types, resource availability, and seasons. These factors come into play when players are constructing outposts. Even without building anything, weather can give players pause as harmful weather effects can occur all across the map.

Kenshi was primarily developed by a single person, Chris Hunt, who began development around 2006–2008. Hunt worked as a part-time security guard in order to make ends meet for the first few years of the game’s development. After five or so years of working his security job, Hunt was able to leave his part-time job and work on the game full-time after finding initial success with the game. He worked by himself on the project until 2013, when he was able to hire a small team that works with him on the project. Hunt has described the world as “sword-punk”, and was specifically inspired by stories of wandering rōnin and the idea of a survivor travelling a wasteland.

Hunt has described his impetus for creating the game as his dislike of the “hand-holding” that other RPGs have when starting out. On his general mantra for designing the game, Hunt stated that he considered himself as the player’s enemy. The game’s playable area is 870 square kilometres (340 sq mi), which was done to place dangerous and challenging areas in between rewards that players might seek out. Hunt wanted different areas of the map to have different themes or factions that would make them feel unique, such as one that treats female characters differently than males.

The game was first released in early access in 2013 before its official release on December 6, 2018.