As exciting as it is to flay zombies, wreck cars, or glean spoils from galaxies far far away, sometimes it's a treat to take a deep breath and sink into a game that offers a deep, quiet kind of beauty. "Song of the Deep" looks like just such a game, and it's coming from Insomniac Games to the PlayStation 4 this summer. So on those days when it's just too hot to do anything but sit around, dive into a new world—a world of wonder and mystery under the sea.
The ocean is an incredibly beautiful place, but it can be terrifying, too. In "Song of the Deep," a girl who has always loved her father's tales of the sea waits up one night for him to come back from his long fishing expedition. When he doesn't return, she begins to worry. A strange dream of her father being imprisoned somewhere in the depths of the ocean spurs her to action, and she decides to look for him in the vast and lonely blue waters. She sets out after assembling her own submarine from a collection of spare parts. This spunky heroine's name is Merryn, and you'll be in control of her movements as she explores the underwater world in which her sole family member has disappeared.
The game is a side-scroller, but with a twist. You'll have things to shoot at and items to collect, but you also have puzzles to solve and obstacles to remove. Although it's a 2D game, there's a 3D scope to this world that sets it apart from your average side-scrolling adventure. According to Insomniac Games, the company that created the title, this underwater world is "interactive in surprising ways."
According to early news and reviews, you'll have two different ways to control main character Merryn. In one mode, she is swimming in shallower parts of the sea, while in another mode she is safely ensconced in a submarine, exploring the deeper areas of the ocean.
Other than the unique twists on the game's shooter/side-scroller roots, "Song of the Deep" features incredibly beautiful artwork. The background is a lush, detailed series of ocean settings, but the atmosphere of the game is like something from a dream or a fairytale. You can feel the cool and the quiet immediately, although the peril is also ever-present, in the shape of fearsome ocean creatures and problematic obstacles. The game's makers cited influences of Irish mythology in their designs for Merryn's ocean world.
This is definitely a game that's safe for kids to enjoy, and perhaps young gamers are the primary audience. However adults should find it fun to play as well, with its charming world, exciting levels, and mysterious quest.
The rating is pending, and we don't know exactly when we'll see this title available for download. Let's hope that when it finally arrives, it will be as enchanting as it seems.