Tactical Survival Game - Submerge

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Submerge is a fast paced, tactical survival game with main focus on thrilling multiplayer matches.
It combines the players passion for Hero Units from “Dota” with the beloved tactical fighting and
moving behaviors from Starcraft - but without any waiting times for matches to begin!

In a dangerous underwater world you control a squad of hero-like units and hunt down other players
in order to survive longer than every other player – its hunt or being hunted!

[FONT=Arial Black]Innovative Gameplay

Players fight other players with their customized army to steal “life time” points from each other
to survive longer than everybody else in the game.

In the meta-game the players can unlock, upgrade and choose the right troop types for the next match.

No other strategy game allows you to connect in a running session without having some huge
disadvantages ingame.

[FONT=Arial Black]Craft your Swarm
Submerge lets you pick the abilities you want to bring into battle and change them while playing. How?

In the game you control a squad which consists of multiple units with unique abilities.
Before joining a match you decide which units you want to bring to battle to challenge the other player’s strategies.


[FONT=Arial Black]Submerge
The fight takes place deep down, below the ocean’s surface. In the beautiful underwater world the wild life is not only colorful
and pretty to watch, but also aggressively going after your units. Sea creatures, deep sea worms or poisonous corals are
only a few of the dangers you are facing down there.

[FONT=Arial Black]Survive
Can you stand your ground against 15 different players at once?

Are you the one fighting off all players and surviving longer than everybody else?

Feel the intense pressure of your enemies that you already know from survival games like DayZ or H1Z1.

Crafting a powerful squad, executing your superior tactic and being skilled enough to break your enemies tactic will do the job.
Take on the challenge and participate in an intense, fast-paced and tactical 16 player multiplayer struggle for survival!


[FONT=Arial Black]FAQ](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)

[FONT=Arial Black]Previous Entries

[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Defining the game’s theme](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Defining the game’s mood](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Control the Swarm!](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Unit Design Philosophy](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Translating Mood into Level Design](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - How to tame your swarm](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Unit Creation](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Video - Painting the Crimson Jackjaw](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Video - High poly asset modeling](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Video - Low poly asset modeling](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Video - Painting the asset](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Announcement - Submerge First Playtest](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - A new nation joins the fight](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Video - Submerge: First Gameplay](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Introduction - The Black Widow](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Submerge Post FX](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Story - Introduction](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Developer Blog - Changelog](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)
[FONT=Arial Black]Announcement - Submerge at Gamescom](Tactical Survival Game - Submerge - Game Development - Unreal Engine Forums)


Okay so I already teasered it a little but just to share the full announcement with you
(we don’t want you guys to miss anything :O) here is the news about “Submerge at Gamescom”:

What are your plans for August? Join us to celebrate the games!

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We are happy to announce that we’ll be attending Gamescom this year sponsored by Teamspeak.
Meet us at their booth in hall 10.1 for daily events and tournaments.
Just search look for your favorite submarines exploring the dark and mysterious underwater world.

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Join us at the Teamspeak booth where we will host tournaments every day. Every day players will
get the opportunity to win awesome prices by participating in tournaments and other events.
Visit any time to check out the latest version of Submerge or just to say hello.

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Submerge already got greenlit on steam, and we recently switched to Unreal4.

In the future we are going to show you further artworks, and lots of updates on the development stage.

You can also follow us on Facebook Twitter Steam IndieDB or check out the games Website.

Feel free to comment and tell us your thoughts or ask questions. We always love hearing from you!

This looks really promising!, when are you planning to release? :slight_smile:

Hi Screechout, glad you like it!

We are planning to have first playtests in Summer this year.
We will release the date in time on all our platforms to give you guys the opportunity to get keys for the playtests.

Hey, looks interesting. Would be nice to see some moving pictures :smiley:

We have some REALLY early video material over at our greenlight page: Follow me =D

This is an early prototype made in unity but it should be enough to give you a first impression of the gameplay.With the switch to unreal we are creating loads of new material.

To get even more details of the development you can also follow our developers blog which is not posted here because that would be waaaay too much input for the forum since it doesn’t only contain information about the game itself but also about the development process. (check it out, it’s really cool :D)

Yeah, thank you (: This looks really good. Waiting for the first moving UE4 pictures then! Keep going.

Na, i wouldn’t say that. I think there are many people loving to know about the developement process of a game. The “Work in Progress” thread should be used like that in my opinion and
not like a “Here is my game, if you want to see the !Work in Progress!, then look at my blog”.

Centainly you can do it this way if you don’t want to post it here, but i myself watch the WiP Forum to see this kinda stuff and not only 4 pictures with a few lines of text.

:smiley: I hope you don’t get me wrong here! Would just love to see more indepth in the WiP Forum.

PS: For example the last entry “Defining the game’s theme” has some awesome interesting pictures that explain how you decided on several questions. This would be totaly awesome to see here! :smiley:

No worries! Thank you, for your feedback. Actually you have a point. :slight_smile:
I’ll see what will be best to keep the first post up to date and structured (a spoiler function would be so awesome)
Maybe I’ll show the current News there and just link to past posts. Just give me some feedback what’s comfortable to read.

Sooo here it is! Our Game Designers are talking about:

[FONT=Arial Black]Defining the game’s theme

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The very first thing to figure out in game development (from a designers point of view): What’s the very core of the game, what is it all about, which experience should a player go through playing the game? This is, what we call the game’s theme.

We always knew what Submerge should be about, but as we tried to write the theme of Submerge down in as few words as possible we had a really hard time. It seems that having a feeling of how the game should be and actually expressing it to communicate the theme to other team members are two very different things.

It took a lot of sleepless nights, drove us crazy and was much harder than expected to come up with a single phrase, nailing the Submerge theme down. But finally here it is: Submerge is about …

**Surviving under water **

It does not sound very special nor very impressive, obviously one sentence is not enough to describe a game. But it helps a lot if you write down your game’s theme in one sentence. From now on this theme builds the core of our design, helping us to evaluate whether a new idea or feature fits the game theme or not.

Of course this one phrase is not enough, instead it is the beginning of getting to know your own game better and defining more aspects which all should support the core game theme.

For Submerge we defined three crucial pillars

[FONT=Arial Black]Beautiful but deadly underwater world

For us this expresses the experience of submerging into a beautiful, yet deadly underwater world, inhabited by colorful sea live, packed with corrals and with giant sea creatures lurking everywhere, trying to raid wherever we go. It also describes how all the inhabitants of this world behave. Creatures move in swarms and we players also try to keep all our units together not to lose a single unit to one of the many dangers out there.

[FONT=Arial Black]PvPvP

Submerge is about struggling with the hostile world, but also with other players, who are hunting us. This means getting attacked from everywhere – always on the run – trying to survive.

But it’s also about being the hunter, knowing and taking advantage of the dangerous surroundings and coming at an opponent from different sides. For us survival is about both, knowing when to take the risk to engage in a fight and when to retreat and come back strong.

This duality is what thrills us about the subject: Being left alone in a hostile world struggling for survival. For us multiplayer is the most important aspect to capture this feeling. Instead of brainless hordes of zombies we are facing other players, with their unpredictability, their tactics and their skill, which constantly creates new and interesting situations – at least that’s what we going for :slight_smile:

[FONT=Arial Black]Time is limited

Part of the survival aspect is that challenges are getting harder over time, which increases the challenge of surviving and creates increasingly intense gameplay experience with fast, action-packed battles. Submerge is about not standing still, but constantly being in motion – chasing, fleeing, searching, while trying to become as powerful as possible.

(: Yes, i already asked about it last year. Chance told me it takes some time, because of the holidays around christmas.
I guess i need to remind him again x)

Thanks for the Indepth Post. That’s exactly what i love to see (:

Today, we are taking you on a trip to our art department.
Our Concept Artists are talking about the difficulties in creating the basic look and feel of the games background.
In different steps they speak about how the battlefield of Submerge is created. Have fun!

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We actually started out with concepting some of the flora and fauna the player will see in Submerge, wich is nice,
because it gives us a good first impression about the life that marks the world. It gave us room to figure out
whether we want to work with illuminated plants or to get an idea about what kind of creeps the player might has
to deal with when he’s not fighting other players.


But doing so you soon reach the point where those plants and creatures have to be shown in their natural habit to
really get an idea of the feeling you want to create. So we switched to a simple isometric square plate and painted
out a small piece of how we imagine the atmosphere of Submerge to be. Then we quickly placed some of our
creations and talked about the setting. First Image – too colorful. The colors brought a lot of life into the scene
but at the same time it gets really hard to tell what is an enemy or what are my own units.


That problem is pretty much the same with the city you can see in the second picture. The colors are much better
while the city still has good contrast to the ground texture. We also reduced the structure of the sand to increase
the contrast to the units. Still the city would be too detailed to move directly over it.


In the third picture we went for a try with reduced saturation and less structure on the ground. This gives a good
contrast to the worm. Just imagine you’re navigating through a deep canyon and suddenly encounter that thing.
The underground was still too bright though, a bit too friendly for the idea we had in mind. So that’s why we finally
came up with the fourth picture.


The dark underground gives us the opportunity to add more details without them distracting from the brighter units.
Now we also added this nice illumination that indicates where creatures are lurking in the depths, ready to munch
away some of your units.

So thank you for reading, as always share your thoughts with us, tell us your opinion, we love hearing from you.
And because you made it to the end of the post, here is one of our moodboards with the new style.


Ctrl+D :cool:

Did you remind him? Because other posts would need this feature as well. It is horrible to scroll those massive posts.

No i did not, because i don’t want to stress him with this and get on his nerves. I already told him 3 times i guess :O.

So maybe i will ask mid February if he got some new infos :smiley:

Have some delicious art sweetening you the waiting time to the next dev blog.

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After the last GD post about the game’s theme, some of you discovered the point “moving in swarms”
in one of the diagrams and wanted to know what is it all about.

Our first gameplay was very RTS like. You control a lot of units, send them to different places on the
map to capture, build or protect stuff. But somehow it never really felt like being underwater. We really
wanted our units to stick together like a real swarm instead of being spread across the ocean. I mean,
that’s what we always see, when watching ocean documentaries – hundreds and hundreds of tiny fish
forming a giant swarm, swimming as a whole.

So that is what we were aiming for and the first gameplay tests felt awesome. The moment you are
moving all our units at once in one big swarm, it feels so much more like cruising through the deep sea,
watching out for prey. You feel much more “connected” to your units, which really makes you
“leader of the swarm”.


All right, now you’re commanding a swarm – all units at once – one click. Only in rare occasions you move
single units, but never far away from your swarm.

But that leaves the question: How should the swarm be controlled?
We prototyped two different ways so far:

RTS controls (e.g. Starcraft 2):

  • Right clicking sends the whole swarm to the target point
  • Swarm units move in formation
  • Camera can be moved freely by moving the mouse cursor to the edge of the screen

Hack and slay controls (e.g. Diablo 3):

  • While holding down right mouse button all units directly follow the movement of the mouse
  • Swarm units move in formation
  • Camera is centered and locked above the swarm (center of all units)

We are torn between both possibilities. So we thought – why not involving you guys!

How would you like to control your units in Submerge?

  1. Hack and slay (e.g. Diablo 3): holding down right mouse button with locked camera
  2. RTS like (e.g. Starcraft 2): right-clicking on map with free camera

Just leave us a message with your opinion down in the comment section, tell us what you think,
we love hearing from you!

The units of Submerge are the very core of the game. All interactions will include units,
be it your own or your enemies’. They are always visible, they are always on your mind.
Lose your units and you’re going to have a bad time!

So that’s what today’s post will be all about. Units. How we design them, and how you
will love them – or hate them. Depending on who they fight for. Obviously, our top goal
is to create interesting units. So let’s check how we achieve that.

[FONT=Arial Black]Units must be unique
You don’t want units to feel the same. That’s why, no unit will be like another. Every unit
will look differently and play differently.
Gameplay-wise, we use a set of roles, attributes and values to create a base. On top,
the unit’s special ability will give you the feeling of interacting with an individual, not
a mass product. Finally, upgrades will allow you to customize your unit.

With this set of rules, we can provide a wide variety of units to make every single
play session of Submerge unique.


[FONT=Arial Black]Units must be simple
Don’t get us wrong on that, Submerge won’t be a no-brainer. Submerge will challenge
you, other players will challenge you and the survival won’t be easy! So why do we
aim for simple units? The reason is that simple pieces provide the most interesting
combinations. If you think about chess, you have very simple pieces. Each chess piece
is pretty easy to understand. The complexity of chess is about the combinations of its
pieces. And that is exactly what we are aiming for – simple atoms that make a
complex molecule.

[FONT=Arial Black]Units must be strong
Every unit will have a clear strength, a field of superior power. Obviously that’s necessary
to make your enemies whine when you take them apart.
But be aware that we won’t make it as easy for you as “Yeah, let’s design that one unit
that can kill all other units with just one hit and that other unit with an immortal armor”.
We want you to deal with your units! We want you to know them and experiment with
them. You will learn to master them!

[FONT=Arial Black]Units must be weak
Yeah, life’s not easy. You’ll have to take care that it’s not you who starts whining when
your opponent eats your units as a snack. With power comes responsibility, with strengths
come weaknesses. That’s the Yin and Yang of our units and that’s what makes things
interesting. You know your units’ strengths, you know their weaknesses – and so does your
opponent! It’s all up to you to win that fight. Use your strengths, avoid your weaknesses
and stop your enemies to do the same!


[FONT=Arial Black]Situations have to be interesting
The formula for interesting situations consists of several ingredients. Units are just one
of them and depend highly on their special abilities. And that’s the key point for us:
We strive to design units and their abilities to be useful in multiple situations and for
multiple tasks. Let’s take a simple movement blocking shield as example. Well designed,
this one ability will serve multiple purposes:

  • Block an opponent from attacking your units: Until the attacker reaches you, you’ll have dealt a lot of damage.
  • Hinder your opponent from fleeing: Surprise his units with some extra strikes.
  • Keep enemy units away from resources: He fought hard for these resources. Too bad he can’t reach them now.
  • Prevent units from following you: Seen enough from battle? Move on without annoying appendages following.

[FONT=Arial Black]Units must be loveable
Finally, we want every one of you to have a favorite. Be it the badass appearance, an
awesome playstyle or a touching background story: Everything adds up to a unit’s charm.
We want you to recognize these unique personalities and choose your favorites to play with.

[FONT=Arial Black]TL;DR

Units build the core of Submerge. To maintain a high standard, our design philosophy for the units are:

  • Uniqueness in appearance and playstyle
  • Simplicity of single units, complexity of unit combinations
  • Specific strengths and weaknesses
  • Serve multiple purposes in different situations
  • Strong charm. Everyone will have favorites.


Wow … very cool … good job. Good luck with everything. 8-}

Thanks! Very appreciated! :slight_smile:

You asked for it - frequently

Allright, there are some reappearing questions lately, so let us summarize some of those and give you all some answers.

**Q. What is Submerge - in one sentence? **

A. Submerge is a tactical survival game about – well, apparently about surviving in a dangerous underwater world.

**Q. Tactical … what? **

A. Lovable hero units like Dota, tactical fighting like Starcraft and all of that without waiting times for matches –
that’s how we like to describe the term “tactical survival game”.

Players fight other players with their customized army to steal “life time” points from each other to survive longer than
everybody else in the game. In the meta-game the players can unlock, upgrade and choose the right unit types for the
next match.

**Q. And when are you planning to release? **

A. We are aiming for first Gameplaytests in June/July this year.

**Q. Nice, will it be possible to be a part of the gameplay tests? **

A. Of course, Submerge would be nothing without you – we love to hear what you think about the game! We will announce
the gameplay tests early enough for you to send us an application for a key. Keep an eye on the common platforms or even better,
subscribe to our newsletter to never miss any news about Submerge.

**Q. I heard the game would be released with a Linux and Mac version, too? **

A. Yes, but we will launch the PC version first. We want to do a stable PC version first …Linux and Mac will follow later on,
since a game that’s running fine on PC is not necessarily working on Linux or Mac - but we also don’t want you to have to wait
ages for the first release.

Now THAT was some wall of text! Keep up asking questions, we’ll permanently extend the faq so keep an eye on our website.

Here, have some mood art to relax your eyes.

The concept is nice. The concept artwork is awesome. Cant wait to see more

This looks promising, can’t wait to see more updates.