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Game Info:

World of Diving
Developed by: Vertigo Games
Published by: Vertigo Games
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Available on: PC, Mac, Linux
Number of players: Single and online Multiplayer
Genre: Simulation
ESRB Rating: Not Rated
Price: $19.99

Thank you Vertigo Games for sending us an Early Access Steam Code!

World of Diving is an Early Access Steam game that sells for $19.99.  It's a 3D Oculus Rift supported massive multiplayer online game that lets you dive with friends or on your own.  There are various areas to explore including shipwrecks, World War II Submarines,  and underwater caverns.   The community is very active and they have created many missions to play through.  

Even though the game is not finished, it's still very playable.  Currently, a majority of the missions are all photography based, but soon there will be cataloging, discovering landmarks, and salvaging artifacts modes available.  There are three types of missions: daily challenges, game missions, and community missions.

The daily missions add random activities that reward the player with experience points upon completion.     When a game challenge is completed, the player will earn some in game currency called dubloons.  Community missions provide activities to do, but do not offer experience or momentary rewards.  

Highlights:

Strong Points: Oculus Rift support;  level editor
Weak Points: Micro-transactions; separate account required on the game's website
Moral Warnings: Some low-cut swim wear available

There are two forms of in-game currency that can both be earned in the game.  Dubloons can be earned by completing quests or by finding them with a metal detector in the various levels.  Pearls can be obtained by opening up oysters scattered through the levels.  Some oysters require a special tool to open them, but that tool is not available yet.  I have opened approximately one hundred oysters, but have yet to find a single pearl.  

Pearls can be purchased at the game's website for approximately a dollar per pearl.  For a twenty dollar game, I was disappointed about the micro-transactions.   The game's website also encourages donations, account upgrades, and contributing towards community projects.  For example, after $1500 is raised the community who chipped in will be able to help design a custom shipwreck.  

The in-game currency can be used to customize the appearance of your diver.  You can be a male or female and have different colored and styled swimsuits, hair, skin, eyes, oxygen tanks, fins and masks.  I like the green Hulk and blue avatar style skins.  You can also purchase a pet clown fish, lion fish or shark to accompany you on your diving adventures.

World of Diving
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 78%
Gameplay - 16/20
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 6/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 4/5

Morality Score - 93%
Violence - 10/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 6.5/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

The fish are nicely detailed and their animations are believable.  I like how you're able to swim with sharks and not have to worry about becoming a meal for them.  The limitless oxygen is a nice touch as well.  The scenery is well done, but I wish there were more fish or schools of fish in general.  When creating my own level, I was limited by how many objects I could place in it.  Swimming through thousands of fish would be cool!

The breathing and bubble sound effects are believable.   There's no background music, so I often listened to my own while exploring the ocean floor.  An in-game music player would be nice to have.  

The gaming community can make suggestions and ideas voted in will be added to the game.  The voting is done through the game's loading screen.  That's a clever use for one in my opinion.  :)

Overall World of Diving is pretty family friendly.  With all swimming related games you can expect to see skimpy swimwear and this game is no exception.  Even though you can swim with other players, communication is done through various gestures so you don't have to worry about language barriers or swearing.  

This game is shaping up nicely and I look forward to checking up on its progress as it nears completion.  The community is pretty active, so that's a good sign.  If and when I get an Oculus Rift, this will be the first game I try it with.  I can't wait!

About the Author

Cheryl Gress

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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