While as a species we’ve conquered land, the deepest depths of the ocean still remain somewhat of a mystery; there’s plenty of planet Earth yet unexplored, with unknown creatures and mysteries to behold. This is all wonderfully replicated in Deep Loot, from dangerous fish which thrive in pitch black, to lost relics and even sunken ghost ships and colossal squirrel statues. Okay, those last two might not be found in our seas, but it’s all part of the charm of the game.
Deep Loot blends the mining mechanics of games such as Terraria or SteamWorld Dig with the progressive sea exploration of Ridiculous Fishing, where you upgrade and go deeper down to find new species and even greater rewards. Essentially, you’ll start at a shallow depth, mining blocks for ore and to reach new areas, attempting to go further than your last turn and find new and exciting loot.
Naturally, it doesn’t take itself too seriously, with many of the loot items taking the form of a pop-culture reference or a funny artefact. There’s lots to find down there though, which makes this a collector’s dream, including a full chess set, lost Egyptian artefacts, or even the entire skeleton of a prehistoric creature. These collections are a great part of the game, and you’ll be rewarded for completing each of them.
Each time you go down into the sea you’re likely to find something new, and every time you return to the surface, you’ll be able to spend your collected coins (everything translates to coins, making trading quite easy and very modern) on new suits, boats or equipment, such as a bigger air tank for longer dives or a new drill to get through blocks faster. There are also temporary boosters to air, attack, defence and ones which will start you off deeper down.
As well as a drill, you’re equipped with a laser weapon to kill any nasty creatures which may want to attack you. This can be upgraded too, but the attack boosters often suffice until you come across a larger monster such as a shark. There’s no real death penalty, but you’ll still want to avoid enemies as letting your defences down will lead to your oxygen supply depleting and a hasty return to the boat.
While the base objective may become a bit of a grind over time, there are always three additional challenges to be completed which add a dose of variety to proceedings. These award you with XP – each level boosting your coin count – and range from easy tasks such as killing X amount of jellyfish to more difficult missions such as finding a certain number of locations in one dive.
The locations to be found usually take the form of a quirky, knowing reference: as well as the aforementioned ghost ship and statue, there are nuclear bombs, sunken landmarks and even mysterious temples. Discovering a location will sometimes lead to finding a message in a bottle, and there’s a light story woven through this. Again, it’s nothing too serious, but it drives you to collect the rest of them.
And that’s what Deep Loot is all about: collecting as much loot as possible, getting deeper down as you go, and finding new wonders and trinkets as you go. It’s good fun, and there’s a definite attraction in its replayability – no two dives have the same layout, and you’ll be wanting to return to the ocean to collect yet more loot and go even deeper down.