Dry Land Is Not A Myth! Submerged Review

Everything's Underwater, So Let's Climb!

Submerged was another one of those games I hadn't seen anything on, or even heard of, so thanks to our fearless leader here at AGE, LewkOne for throwing a copy my way! Slowly but surely I'm succumbing to the craze of "indie" games, discovering and enjoying plenty of new games and intriguing stories in recent months and Submerged from Aussie developers Uppercut Games is no exception.

Submerged places our only two characters Miku, a young girl and Taku, her younger brother who is weak from a stomach wound on a small motor powered boat which Miku uses to bring Taku to a place that has clearly been flooded and left to diminish with the ages. Miku decides she needs something to help Taku's situation, so sets out on a search to find supplies. This is essentially the game, finding what appear to be air drops with different items such as food, water, medicine etc.

However, getting to these supplies is the time consuming part, spotting a lot of the items can be fairly simple as Miku has a spyglass handy and once item positions have been seen through the spyglass they're taken note of on her map. As everything has been completely surrounded by water your only form of transportation is the small boat left docked nearby to the stone bed Taku is recovering on in what seems to be an old temple of some sort.

Heading towards an items' coordinates you will notice all the important items are on top of buildings, some fairly straight forward, others are rather quite high and the path to the top can be winding and at times confusing on whether you've chosen the path to the top or a side path, which will generally lead you to another item of less importance to Taku's health, but more important to the story. Scattered throughout the area you will stumble across cave man style drawings on old pieces of parchment depicting certain things that may have happened in the area and spotting different wildlife also triggers Miku's artistic drive where she will sketch what she has seen and add it to your inventory.

Piecing all of the extra collectibles together and making your way through the story does reveal, although cryptically and via picture only, most of what has happened and what is currently going on. There was one thing that appeared at what felt like was a random part of the game which was the main catalyst in me wanting to finish it, I'll leave it up to you to come across that one on your own. All I will say is my reaction came out as such - "That ain't human!"

Scaling buildings can seem a little monotonous on occasion but generally by the time you feel you've had enough climbing you'll reach the top or discover a collectible or a cool view you can scope out new item locations from. Boating around the place isn't quite reminiscent of extreme sports but isn't as sluggish as I'd first expected, controls flow well, camera is smooth and thankfully you have a boost upgrade on the boat that you can continuously increase by collecting parts off of old capsized boats.

Although I started gaining a lot more intrigue and joy in Submerged, no game is without some sort of short coming. I hate myself for having to say a bad word against a game created by a group of fellow Australians but unfortunately I do have to be unbiased. I'm probably nitpicking with this but being thrown into a setting I know nothing about, not knowing exactly what on earth I'm meant to be doing and also having no understandable dialogue does frustrate me a little bit but if you have no qualms with discovery and exploration then ignore this paragraph.

All in all against my own foresight I did end up enjoying Submerged and much respect goes to a small group of Aussie developers for getting something out there and onto next gen consoles. I'd like to have seen this game debut for around $20 but for the sake of supporting some hard working Aussies $26.95 seems absolutely more than fair. If you've got a few spare bucks and a few hours to burn on something quality I suggest giving Submerged a go and let me know what you think in the comments!

Submerged is available now on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Steam.

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