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Kazak is a 90s inspired RPG with shooting and platforming elements. There is a heavy focus on replayability, with many branching paths, endings, alternate dialogue and unlockables.

There are no random encounters in the game. All enemies are visible on the map screen and many can be eliminated or avoided without having to fight them.

There are 6 playable characters and a max party size of 3. Each character is customizable with up to 4 battle skills that can be changed outside of combat. Each battle skill has stat upgrades/downgrades, special states attached to them or other effects. Some skills can be leveled up with successive use, increasing power or granting additional effects. Each character starts with less than 4 skill slots available, but progressing through the game will unlock more slots. Slots remain unlocked even in subsequent runs of the game.

In battle, a battler’s turn is conducted immediately after selecting an action. Turn order is displayed at the bottom of the screen. Enemy attacks are able to be avoided or countered depending on the type of attack, reflected by warning indicators at the top right of the screen. Each enemy also has visual or sound cues to warn what attack they will use.

There is no MP in the game. Everything revolves around the EX gauge, located in the bottom center of the battle screen. More powerful skills require more of the gauge to use, while weaker skills only require a small segment of it. Enemies also have a gauge and can use super skills if the bar is high enough. The bar can be increased by taking damage, dealing damage or dodging enemy attacks. It can also be raised via items or the Focus command on the right page of the command menu. Focus bears a risk to it: it increases incoming damage by 50% until that battler’s next turn. The enemy gauge can be lowered by using the Taunt command, using certain skills or using the basic Attack command.

Attack rolls a die and if the result is between 1 or 4, it does proportionate damage, raises your own meter and lowers the enemy meter. If the result is a skull, no damage is done and your meter drops to zero, while a star result will force a critical hit and restore a large amount of meter.

Defend reduces incoming damage and eats away at the meter before taking any HP damage.

Outside of equippable skills and the command menu, there are situational skills that can appear during certain battles. Situational skills vanish after the battle.

Leveling up is done manually by going to the status page after gaining enough EXP points. Upon leveling up, you are given 2 to 3 points to put towards increasing stats such as attack or defense. There are some stages with areas or events that cannot be entered unless battler levels are high or low enough.

Kazak is styled more after arcade games than a traditional RPG. After completing the first stage, players choose between 2 to 3 choices of stages, with the story changing depending on which routes are taken. Upon reaching stage 7 and defeating the final boss, players can play New Game + and carry over everything but their level and play the game again and try new paths.

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