Sub­ma­rine Fun

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As in “sub­ma­chine gun,” ged­dit? What­ever, it’s In­som­niac’s new Metroid-alike

Af­ter kiss­ing the sky with Sun­set Over­drive, dev In­som­niac Games takes us to the ocean floor in Song of the Deep, a 2D ad­ven­ture styled af­ter the likes of Castl­e­va­nia and Metroid, which stu­dio chief cre­ative of­fi­cer Brian Hast­ings de­scribes as a “pas­sion pro­ject”. More like “pois­son pro­ject”, right?

Song of the Deep stars a girl called Mer­ryn, the daugh­ter of a fish­er­man who is lost at sea. Trou­bled by a dream of dad dis­ap­pear­ing, she scram­bles to­gether a sub­ma­rine from spare parts and em­barks on a res­cue mis­sion. Like other games in the Metroid­va­nia sub-genre, Song of the Deep takes place across a large map that grad­u­ally re­veals it­self as you gain new skills and upgrade your craft: sonar blasts and grap­pling claws let you ma­nip­u­late the

in num­bers en­vi­ron­ment and ex­plore deeper into the abyss; a div­ing suit gives Mer­ryn a way to leave her craft to squeeze through nar­row crevices and flip oth­er­wise un­reach­able switches and levers – there are a num­ber of puz­zles based on wa­ter cur­rents and light beams that de­pend on you do­ing ex­actly this. Many of your ship’s bolt-ons can be pur­chased from an en­ter­pris­ing her­mit crab, be­cause why not?

If this sounds a lit­tle twee for your hardcore tastes, then know that there’s plenty of ac­tion, too: thrilling shootouts with shoals of deadly lantern­fish (you know, the ones with the teeth) amid crum­bling ship­wrecks, and a

> DATAPOIN T: news in num­bers boss bat­tle with a whale-size sea spi­der (yes, sea spi­ders are a thing. Happy swim­ming!). While it’s bold to base an en­tire Metroid­va­nia game un­der the sea (wa­ter lev­els are never tra­di­tion­ally the best parts of 2D games), there’s some in­ter­est­ing stuff here – par­tic­u­larly in how it uses un­der­wa­ter physics to craft fresh puz­zles and ob­sta­cles.

Due for a dig­i­tal re­lease this sum­mer, Song of the Deep is a “pas­sion pro­ject” be­cause Hast­ings wanted to cre­ate a game with a hero­ine that his own ten-year-old daugh­ter could look up to. To this end, there’s even a tie-in kids’ book in the works. More like Po­sei­don pro­ject, am I right?

> DATAPOIN T: news in num­bers

In­ter­est­ingly, it uses un­der­wa­ter physics to craft fresh puz­zles//

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