Where It’s Wetter: ABZÛ’s New Trailer Splashes Down

ABZÛ [official site] is basically Pip-bait of the highest order. Beautiful undersea exploration with music composed by Austin Wintory. Oh god, the kelp forests! The jellyfish! The sea floor!

Come look!

“ABZÛ is an epic descent into the depths of the sea where players explore beautifully rendered ocean environments with fluid swimming controls. In ABZÛ, the user embarks on a nonviolent, 3rd person adventure with no fail states so users can’t die. They can only explore and discover new things about the underwater world as they progress along the emotional spectrum of the game.”

I’ve played a lot of Subnautica – dozens and dozens of hours – and I think the thing that seems the most different in ABZÛ is the speed and movement of the diver. There are points where they’re positively zooming along, even doing dolphin-like flips out of the water.

There’s actually a cool dev blog on the developer, Giant Squid’s, website which looks at how they made the swimming work – there are really interesting touches like the camera predicting where the diver will be facing after she drifts a little at the end of the movement input, or how loop-the-loops work.

I wonder if the game itself will end up somewhere between Subnautica and Endless Ocean? I guess I will find out on 2 August!

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  1. Aerothorn says:

    Sounds a lot like a current-gen Endless Ocean. Did you ever play those games, Pip?

    • Aerothorn says:

      durr you already referenced it in the post itself, skipped the final line :(

  2. Eight Rooks says:

    Okay, I had this on my radar – IIRC Austin Wintory has talked about it before – but I, uh, that trailer. Wow. I was a little “Mmm, yes, very nice, I suppose” to begin with, scrubbing at my monocle, if you like, and then from about 1:00 on my jaw was on the floor. Not really much else I can say – this just shot straight to a must-buy as soon as I’m able.

  3. Premium User Badge

    Scrote says:

    As someone who loves being underwater as much as possible I think I should get this game!

  4. Renevent says:

    Pretty neat, and regarding the speed it reminds me a lot of Echo the Dolphin, which was a really cool game on the Genesis.

  5. LennyLeonardo says:


  6. Seraph says:

    Regardless of how Abzu turns out, Giant Squid’s logo is a masterpiece.

  7. Waltorious says:

    This looks fantastic.

    Pip, have you ever played Aquaria? It’s got beautiful 2D ocean exploration, but it also has a lot of fighting, so it’s not as relaxed as this or Subnautica. I’d be interested to hear what you think if you’ve played it (I happened to like it a lot).

    • Premium User Badge

      particlese says:

      Yeah, Aquaria is definitely not relaxed at times! :D

      The few underwater bits of Ori have made me want to go back to Aquaria, and the latter’s difficulty can be right up there with the former, from time to time. But Aquaria is still excellent, perhaps as beautiful as a lower-budget, smaller-team Ori could possibly be, very often relaxing, and, of course, underwater.

  8. Shazbut says:

    Journey! Except underwater! Perhaps!


    • Premium User Badge

      particlese says:

      Same excitement here! Man, to have Journey on PC…

      Especially with that particular style of Austin Wintory music — not to mention the cave art, the style of ruins, the colour palettes, the general beauty, and so on — this is leaning right up against Journey’s home in my brain. Kinda creeped out by the character’s eyes, though…there’s definitely some sort of abstract uncanny valley thing going on for me there.

      Meanwhile, Aer is just across the street, casually waving from its front porch, far enough away that Journey’s not getting uncomfortable. Anyway, I am inordinately pleased by all this. Journey’s a really high bar to be reaching for, and this appeeeeears to be getting super close while remaining its own thing. Hooray!!