Publisher Quantic Dream and developer Parallel Studio will unveil the underwater narrative game Under the Waves at gamescom 2022. The theme of ‘mourning’ is central to the game, but the conservation and preservation of the oceans must also be promoted.
In Under the Waves, players take on the role of Stan, a diver for an oil company located in the North Sea. Stan investigates a series of mysterious events underwater, while simultaneously confronting loss and grief. Ultimately, he must try to resurface, a metaphor for processing a traumatic experience.
The game is set in the 1970s, although the trailer also contains futuristic craft. The developer calls this style “retrofuturism.” Players can explore underwater caves, wrecks and other parts of the ocean in the narrative game. They also need to collect materials to craft new scuba gear. Under the Waves will be released sometime in 2023 for PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox Series X and S, Xbox One, and PC via Steam and the Epic Games Store.
Quantic Dream, Parallel Studio and the non-profit Surfrider Foundation Europe are also collaborating to promote the preservation of the world’s oceans, rivers and lakes. “Under the Waves is a love letter to the ocean and should shed light on its preservation. (…) Under the Waves, Surfrider emphasizes Europe’s environmental message through vibrant marine life and subtle messages incorporated into the gameplay experience.” Quantic Dream also promises to donate money to the organization, although it is not known how much.
The French Quantic Dream is known for its narrative, cinematic games. For example, the developer released Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls and Detroit: Become Human. The company is currently working on Star Wars: Eclipse, a narrative Star Wars game set during The High Republic. Since 2020, the company also publishes games. The French company Parallel Studio has only released a few indie games, but consists of a small team of developers who previously worked on Life is Strange and Heavy Rain.