Abyss is a tactical strategy RPG set about around the Cold War era. The premise is much like any Lovecraftian horror around this time—a team of submariners maroon in a deep cavern, filled with lurking evils in the dark.
As the game goes on, the world will test how far people will go towards survival. It will try to see the depths that players will go and how they’ll react in a bad situation.
In essence, the game is Darkest Dungeon meets XCOM meets Bioshock’s Rapture. The game is pulpy, using colors reminiscent of the ‘50s art deco the game is trying to emanate.
Exploration outside the submarine base happens similar to turn-based combat. Players will have two action types per character per turn, similar to XCOM.
The first turn will allow movement between green and yellow tiles. Moving to yellow tiles lets players move further, at the cost of two actions. Moving to green tiles let players move nearby but gives them a chance to attack or defend.
The gameplay for Stirring Abyss does not end with recycled loops from other similar titles. The game offers a different level of narrative experience compared to games within its genre.
Abyss, from what the demos show, is rich in lore. The exploration mechanic fleshes out naturally, offering so much narrative depth to the game. It also shows off a unique storytelling technique unseen before.
As players go on, they will see different items that will progress the story further. Every action will have a consequence, which includes sanity hits. The dreaded turn timer from XCOM 2 is also coming back, but this time in the form of “air.”
So far, there isn’t clear information if the combat will receive an overhaul. If the alpha demo on Youtube is anything to base on, it’s still a little clunky and cumbersome. The movement is not as fluid, and enemy models border the uncanny valley.
Stirring Abyss is coming to Steam on October 29, in time for Halloween. The game has many potential to it, especially for an indie game from a small Finnish studio.
Featured image courtesy SlitherineGames/Youtube Screenshot
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