LQ: 9.3


Brain grade: 9.1
Fun score: 9.5

Game Type: , , ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ Platform/Console: , , , , , LWK Recommended Age: 10+ Thinking Skills Used: , Academic Skills Used:

Nintendo Switch PS4/PS5 Xbox One/Series X/S Steam


Subnautica is a first person adventure survival game where you play as a member of a spaceship that has crash landed on a strange planet. Completely alone and with a minimum amount of supplies, you must navigate through this world and find a way to survive on a planet that is 100% water. The player dives to search for wreckage and other local flora and fauna, fabricates new parts to create tools, upgraded gear, and even an underwater vehicle and habitat.

The player also needs to maintain their Oxygen, Health, Hunger, and Thirst levels, although some of these can be turned off for slightly easier play. As the player continues through the game, they will create systems that make it easier to survive and allow for deeper exploration of the planet such as a home base and an underwater vehicle. This will allow the player to piece together the mystery of the planet, figure out why their ship crashed, and what is going on with the monstrous but beautiful sea creatures that are everywhere. 

Subnautica also features a creative mode where the player can avoid the story and the stress of survival and just build their own world under the sea. 

Subnautica helps kids practice and improve the following skills:

Organization: Organizing one’s/managing one’s environment /personal possessions.

In the game Subnautica, you start with limited inventory space in your rescue pod, meaning you need to make decisions about what is important to keep and what needs to be discarded. As you progress through the game you can build lockers and a home base which increases your storage capacity. The player needs to use their organizational skills to keep track of what supplies they have and where they are placed and how many of each item they have. Players who struggle with organization can name their storage lockers based on their contents for ease of use and group like items together to make it easier to remember where their items are located. 

Planning: Becoming more systematic. 

Survival in Subnautica requires planning. Everything you need to do within the game is helping you to make it through another day and unfold a little bit more of the mystery of your ship crash. In order to do this, the player needs to use their planning skills to determine how they are going to spend their time on the planet by coming up with a system for survival. This includes harvesting materials, crafting and using tools, find food and purifying water, and even constructing a habitat in which to live. Once radio transmissions begin to come through, the player needs to add another layer of strategy to their plan; how to let the rescue team know where you are in order to get off the planet. Players who struggle with planning may want to play with the thirst and hunger meters turned off as it will limit the amount of tasks per day and let the player focus on practicing other portions of planning within the game. 

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