That is a video of a game called 'Depth: Aquatic Stealth.' The game takes place underwater with two teams. One team is made up of scuba-divers and they have to find treasure. The other team is made up of sharks and they have to defend the treasure by ripping the divers apart. Sounds like a great concept... right? Well, I think it is, though there is something that can make or break this game: the controls.
This game got me thinking about a question I ask often. Why don't we see games that take place underwater more often? (Not like Bioshock, I'm talking about games where you actually control yourself submersed in water.) I think it's for a variety of reasons, but mainly, it comes down to control and movement in a completely 3-dimensional environment. Sky-oriented games like Ace Combat are the same way, but there, you have a sense of gravity. If you've ever been scuba diving or even just let yourself sink in a large pool, it's like zero-gravity. There's still gravity of course, but it's force doesn't feel as strong.
I think the problem developers have with designing controls around an underwater environment, is that they haven't yet achieved that feeling of zero-gravity, of slowly drifting through a current, or sinking. We can see sinking and drifting achieved in some 2-D underwater levels, so why can't 3-D games do it? (Some probably do, but I haven't seen many examples.)
|Mario can do it.|
|The ocean: It's scary.|