Is it worth playing? Review after 10 Hours of Subnautica, Free from the Epic Games Store.
With the launch of the new Epic Games Store, Epic Games has made a major announcement! Indie game Subnautica is going to be the first of many games you can download for free every two weeks up until 2019. I have had my eye on this game ever since some of my favorite Youtubers played it, but went in pretty much blind. The download was quick, and it was the full game. I decided to try it out.
So is Subnautica worth downloading and is it worth playing? I streamed ten hours of the game to see how it stacked up. Here we go, spoiler free!
The plot is basic. You are stranded on an alien planet that seems to consist entirely of ocean after your spaceship, the Andromeda, crash lands. You begin to explore the land, which is filled with hundreds of creatures and wildlife just below the surface. You start off in a shallow area, working to repair your little lifeboat pod, but as the story progresses, you are pulled out further and further and have to craft supplies and means of survival.
My first hour was spent getting a feel for the environment in the starting area. I missed a main event that happens solely because I was terrified of dying. You have an oxygen, thirst, hunger, and health meter that decrease at a normal rate for early on in a game. It does take awhile to discover where to get certain materials or how to get them, but the frustration is worth it most times. Usually everything can be found by going out and exploring, and when in doubt, run around slicing things protruding from the ocean floor. The creatures and environment are stunning.
That being said, I have a fear of the dark and of drowning. I’m a strong swimmer, but for some reason the surrounding ocean terrifies me. Add dangerous creatures to the mix and I’ll be on land faster than you can blink. That being said, I thoroughly am enjoying the game so far. I am worried about how fast the story is progressing and passage of time events that are miss-able, but this game is about discovery. If you spend your entire time sitting in your lifepod and avoiding nights, odds are you won’t progress quickly enough. The ocean is very disorienting, so if you don’t get a feel for a map of the land early on, you could get very, very lost. I was smart and starting investing in material collection early on. Also, when you procure a scanner, scan everything that looks like a ship piece.
So the first hour I spent close to my lifepod. I repaired it, and worked towards scanning the creatures in the area and gathering resources. I quickly ran out of storage. Around hour three, I had completed two radio quests and explored two more biomes. At hour four I explored a large wreck and focused less on surviving on one life and more on exploring everything I could. Hour five was spent crafting my first building and gathering materials from a new biome. Hour six was crazy as the story took me way out to a plot twist I wasn’t expecting. That’s when it dawned on me what the story was and gave me a goal and objective for myself. I won’t go into more as it is a pretty major spoiler, but when a timed event pops up make sure you get there before the time runs out. Hour seven I spent exploring an underground ruin close to the crashed ship and building my first vehicle. Hour eight I spent building up my base and making it bigger. Hour eight, nine, and ten were spent getting more comfortable with enemies and finding rare items to finally get my base to feel like a safe haven, well, as safe as it could be.
Ten hours in, I feel like I have barely scratched the surface of this massive world. The game has the perfect mix of suspense, the terror of the unknown, and the excitement of exploration. There’s something to be said about the warm feeling I got watching an enemy I was terrified of play catch with a piece of scrap metal in the distance. Simply amazing experiences. I’m so glad I gave this game a chance! If you want to download Subnautica for free on PC, simply download the Epic Games store from their website, and purchase it before 11:59PM EST on Dec 27. Best of all, once you grab the game, it’s yours to keep!
Grimmfinity is a game enthusiast, motion graphics artist, and variety streamer on Twitch. They enjoy story-rich and content-heavy games and has been writing about them for ten years!