Sunkenland – PC Review

0 0
Read Time:5 Minute, 12 Second

Sunkenland is an open-world survival crafting game with base building, in a similar vein to the likes of The Forest and Raft, but with underwater exploration. Developed and published by Vector3 Studios, this is their first-ever title. Sunkenland is out now for early access on Steam for £16.50.

The Sea Is Key To Survival

Sunkenland starts the player with a near-naked character on deserted land, left with only the memory of being tortured and nothing more. Sunken cities are your only hope for survival, as they’re rich in resources and essential to progress. Build bases, explore and survive on and off the land.

I'm sitting in a boat heading towards a tower that looks like it was made from scrap iron and wood. I currently have my crossbow out. You can see; an axe, pickaxe, ore detector, and spear in my toolbar. My HUD also displays my; health, stamina, thirst, and hunger.
There’s much to explore.


Survival is the key, of course, and there are a few things you need to manage to do so. The player has four meters: Hunger, Thirst, Health, and Energy. Stave off Hunger by fishing, spearing fish in the sea, or eating small creatures like crabs and molluscs. To replenish Thirst, make a water purifier similar to other survival games like Raft or find sodas in wreckages. The Energy meter contains two bars: Stamina and Energy. The Stamina bar indicates how long you can run or swim. Energy is replenished by sleeping, eating or drinking. Health, however, is only refilled by medicine. Upon death, you will lose your inventory items, but you won’t lose items equipped with the toolbar.

What You’re Up Against

Starvation and dehydration aren’t the only threats to the player in Sunkenland. Sharks pose a threat underwater, but they aren’t alone. Marauders and mutants will ambush you on land and even pursue you in the sea. Encountering enemies is dangerous and inevitable, especially when they may have far stronger weapons and come in groups. Enemies wield various weapons, such as shields, spears and even guns. Beware, as enemies may even try to invade your base and destroy items within it.

I have climbed onto one of the enemy occupied vessels and started taking out the enemy with my revolver I made from scrap. My characters hands are wearing workers gloves.
Time to raid one of the factions.

To defend yourself and your base, the player has to craft weapons and armour. The player has a head, torso, leg and glove slot for armour. Amour lessens the damage enemies deal to the player, but unlike weapons, it has durability. Once the durability meter runs out, the armour will break.

The Map & Islands

The in-game map shows undiscovered islands as a question mark, with the island’s name revealed once you arrive. A percentage is displayed underneath the island, demonstrating how much of the island’s resources are exhausted. Resources aren’t the only things found in these islands. Enemy bases containing valuables and resources may also inhabit the island, so attack and scavenge them if you’re brave enough.

The in-game map that displays undiscovered locations with a question mark. Discovered areas will have a percentage of how much resources are left. Enemy occupied areas are shown red instead of white.
There are a good few spots to check out.

Crafting & Resources

To be able to get more armour and build bases, players must scavenge the world for materials and craft. Scrap piles and barrels wash up on land, but most resources lie below in the sunken cities. Metal and Parts come from metal piles and car wrecks, and cloth scraps are inside washing machines. Clothing items (separate from armour) are also in the depths. Destroying items such as metal boxes and barrels also get you materials. A nice bonus is that when you use the Repair Hammer to destroy something you’ve made, you get half of the materials you used to craft the item back.

This is only one of the crafting tabs in Sunkenland, of what the players can create. In the picture shown are various types of storage containers and some furniture.
I’m glad I can pin items I want to craft in the future.

Additionally, it doesn’t cost materials to repair items, weapons or armour either. Scavenging and destroying aren’t the only means of getting items and resources. A floating trader will swap scrap and materials for valuable items in their inventory, such as blueprints, rare materials and electricals. However, the cost is very high. Another handy tool is pinning a recipe to the upper right corner of the screen to track the ingredients you’re looking for and focus on that recipe.

Graphics & Audio

Though the graphics in Sunkenland may not be up some people’s alley, I enjoy it. While the textures seem a tad dated, the colour is brilliantly vibrant, and I like some of the small animation details. For example, a favourite of mine is when scavenging a metal pile or breaking something, the item visibly deconstructs.

Under the sea in Sunkenland looks beautiful. There are a load of ruins for the player to explore and scavenge from.
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

The audio in Sunkeland is pretty great. The sound effects for chopping trees, firing weapons and HUD noises are clear and crisp. Battle music always plays when enemies engage you, which is a helpful audio cue and entertaining. A soft piano tune also plays throughout general gameplay. Many survival games are often too quiet as you explore and make the experience dull at times.


The longevity of Sunkenland is ultimately up to the player. There doesn’t seem to be an overall goal outside of survival, meaning the player could play until they feel satisfied with their base or progress. However, you could spend much time conquering the sea by hunting down the different factions and eliminating them. The devs plan to add content, such as ocean combat, more vehicles, factions, weapons and items.

Final Thoughts

I’ve enjoyed my time with Sunkenland. The crafting system isn’t overly complex, and gaining materials is relatively easy. There is enough to keep you engaged without feeling like you’re struggling or flying through things too quickly. However, I think players would benefit more from the experience of playing with friends rather than solo. My only gripe is that the trading deal costs feel very steep, and there is no overall goal besides survival.

This game is easy to pick up and enjoy and the developers have already built a solid foundation that’s why I award Sunkenland the Thumb Culture Gold Award. If you enjoyed this review then check out Paul’s PC Review for Par For The Dungeon.


Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.

Thumb Culture

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Discord | Podcast


About Author

Average Rating

5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *