There’s something unique about a game that focuses on a tactile UI and mechanics. From the hands-on manipulation of The Room and Myst to the command consoles of Deadnaut and the grainy screens of Capsule, it’s one way to immerse the player in the role of a character and in a setting. 20,000 Atmospheres looks to be another intriguing approach of the concept, taking the dungeon crawler to the crushing depths and forcing you to view the world through the sensors and screens of your mysterious vessel.
Set with the claustrophobic brass and leather interior of a “nauti-crawl unit”, 20,000 Atmospheres is described as “a Jules Verne meets Frank Herbert story”, placing you in the role of confused survivor trapped in a vessel that they have no idea how to operate. Switches, levers, buttons, multiple screens, each has a function, and together, they allow you to form a picture of the world outside your unit.
Figuring out how to operate the cockpit is as much a gameplay mechanic as actually exploring in this uniquely first person roguelite dungeon crawler. Traveling the depths, searching for terminals to hack and other locations looks like a deliberate and tense affair, since your perspective of the world and your means of navigation is far removed from the WASD controls of other games. Here, movement, power system, radar must be manually activated and managed, all while your vessel groans and threatens to crumple upon a poor decision.
Little else is known about 20,000 Atmospheres’ moment-to-moment gameplay, as it’s still relatively early in development. You can follow the game’s progress through its Itch.io and Twitter pages.