For those who enjoy the aquatic survival of Subnautica and the city-building of the Sid Meier’s Civilization series, Digital Reef’s upcoming game Aquatico may be one to keep tabs on. The team’s aptly-named publisher, Overseer Publishing, released a trailer on their YouTube channel on Monday showing off never-before-seen gameplay footage of the current alpha build.
Set in a world where Earth’s surface is no longer inhabitable for humanity, Aquatico tasks players with rebuilding society in a slightly less inhospitable place: the ocean floor. According to the game’s Steam page, the unique setting will force players to approach city-building in novel ways, utilizing “vertical layered construction” to build their city up rather than out. To keep up with this complex, layered method of construction, the player will have to employ a unique system for underwater infrastructure planning to build a thriving colony. Players will build specific types of infrastructure that supply the needed resources and resolve unique requirements of living in the deep ocean. An expedition system will also allow the player to send their citizens (or robots) on voyages to find precious resources, rescue survivors, and uncover secrets. As a single-player-only game, there will also be an overarching story for players to progress through as their deep-sea settlement grows. Outside of its unique twists, however, fans of games like Civilization VI and Rimworld can enjoy a similar gameplay loop in Aquatico.
The core mechanics of Aquatico are similar to the widely adopted standards of the city building genre. Hunt for basic resources, build structures for your citizens, then expand your underwater production chains to secure higher tier resources. At the same time it is important to keep in mind the needs of your people and tend to them as best as you can.
Aquatico is slated to release exclusively on PC later this year and is currently available to wishlist on Steam.