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Depth Hunter 2: Deep Dive is in many ways a game about being at peace with the universe and exploring the vastness of infinite space – while plunging a spear into the side of a fish from 100 feet away…
Okay, onto the serious side of things. Depth Hunter 2: Deep Dive, as the title foreshadows is a game about hunting… in the depths of the oceans.
You basically start out with minimal gear and through collecting enough coins, artifacts, fish corpses and photographs of said fishes gain more money and more and better gear through spending earned monies. The mechanics are pretty simple. Using WASD or a compatible controller you swim around, you can “boost” using select keys and either use your spear gun or switch to a camera mode to take pictures (which is also upgradable).
While this game will not win any “Game of The Year” awards for graphical fidelity or make your PC melt like a CryEngine game can, the graphics are serviceable and give the illusion of being in a peaceful ocean environment. That is, until you poke your head above water. Once above water the view just looks phoned in. But, we are here for the depths of hunting below the water right?
You get several missions in each location where you must either spear as many fish as possible before a timer runs out to photographing an elusive fish that is hard to find. While playing this game it did give me a good sense of peacefulness and calm. There is no way to “die” in this game and while the game does feature the Great White shark, they don’t seem to care you are there.
The only thing that can really reset a mission is to run out of oxygen (which can also be upgraded) or if you rub your suit across the bottom of the ocean you run the risk of damaging your oxygen level faster. So while you do have to surface from time to time, there is no real sense of urgency, other than the few timed missions, which give even the dumb-thumbed gamer like myself plenty of time to reach the goals. This is one of the underwater games we’ve played that actually got more right than they get wrong.
However, the biggest problems are the length of the game (in it’s current form) and the game once you have finished the missions. It took us a little over 4 hours to complete the game. That has got to be the shortest amount of time we have spent playing a game from start to finish. Once the main missions are done the game just feels… meh, finished. With no challenge left there just isn’t enough there to keep the gamer coming back. Money becomes meaningless because by the end you have more money than you will ever need, and experience stops being added once you hit a hard limit.
We did ask the developers about this and they say they plan on adding more missions and fixing the end game so that the user will have more to do. See the Addendum at the end of this review for info about the new DLC. Another issue is this is not an open-world game by any means. The areas you get to explore are rather limited by invisible walls that keep you from swimming into the deeper areas of the oceans. While this does seem limiting, you don’t really notice unless you try to go into places that don’t look very exciting anyway.
All and all this game is good at what it does. It gives you a calm, peaceful environment to photograph and hunt small fishes and wildlife and for a little while take away your everyday frustrations. Even though the game is ridiculously short and the end game needs more to keep you coming back, it did what it set out to to and we had a good time with it while it lasted.
At the time of writing this review, a DLC add on called “Depth Hunter 2 – Ocean Mysteries” was released on Steam for $4.99. The DLC adds two new locations and also a radar mode to the game to “help you find everything in the game’s locations”. Not sure how we feel about the radar as having that would take some of the fun out of already pretty short game.
GAME TITLE: Depth Hunter 2: Deep Dive GENRE: Action-Adventure PUBLISHER: Biart Company DEVELOPER: Biart Company PRICE: $/€14.99 (Steam) This game was provided by the publisher for review purposes, check our review policy for details