In search of additional games that are similar to Subnautica? Now you want a scary environment to explore, complex survival systems to master, and maybe a few strange monsters to stay away from. Not to worry, this list of the finest Subnautica alternatives has just what you’re looking for.
For us, the best Subnautica games combine plot, exploration, resource management, and even a few jump scares, all of which are essential to the overall Subnautica adventure. Unknown Worlds’ stunning underwater settings are matched by few other games, yet there are many that offer a comparable progression and mystery. Here are 10 games that are similar to Subnautica and can be played right now.
1. The Long Dark
The Long Dark, a survival game set in a dangerous Canadian wilderness, lacks the storytelling prowess of Subnautica, but it’s just as atmospheric. Hand-painted art and magnificent weather are major factors in this, with temperatures plummeting to dangerously low levels when there isn’t enough wood to build a fire. Moments of terror are punctuated by intervals of contemplative silence, and you’ll encounter gruesome situations in which food and light are scarce. Just you and your footprints are all that is left in the world. Of course, there are the wolves.
If you’re looking for breathtaking views of the ocean, try Abzu, an underwater adventure game featuring music composed by Journey composer Austin Wintory. Discover new and breathtaking sights as your music flows over and around you, from massive schools of colorful fish to fascinating underwater temples embossed with ancient engravings.. This game isn’t quite as scary or challenging as Subnautica, but there is still much to enjoy, and the beautiful underwater landscape never fails to amaze.
3. No Man’s Sky
In contrast to Subnautica, No Man’s Sky allows you to roam the cosmos at your own pace. In a smooth transition between space and solid ground, space station and rocky outpost, you zip from planet to planet, bursting through atmospheres and watching land slowly rise to meet you. You’ll get the most out of it if you follow your own whims, even if the game has a story and objectives. Some planets are devoid of resources or life signals, while others seem like a place where you might comfortably spend decades if you wanted to. Over the years, Hello Games has reworked the entire game, making it far more enjoyable than it was when it first came out. Even underwater base building has been included, along with multiplayer, VR compatibility, more narrative, and more.
4. Subnautica: Below Zero
After Subnautica, the only logical next step is… more Subnautica, and that’s exactly what Below Zero provides. Subnautica: Below Zero is a stand-alone expansion that will provide you with hours of underwater enjoyment after a brief spell in early access. It’s a lot colder in Below Zero, which takes place in the polar region of an alien planet on board a research station that’s in orbit above you. In Subnautica, you may expect the familiar gameplay cycles, but with new biomes, creatures, and tools.
If you’re a lover of survival sandbox games like Subnautica, you’ll love how deep the crafting systems are in Starbound and how many planets there are to discover. As you travel between worlds, you’ll collect materials to enhance your gear, ranging from swords to machine guns, walking boots to jetpacks and teleportation technologies. It’s basically a sci-fi Terraria with a greater emphasis on story. As a result, each of its planets has its own particular biome, which is developed for maximum variety: a thick forest, then a lake of magma. Scripted bosses, likable characters, and an abundance of mythology make for an engaging plot that keeps you eagerly anticipating the next planet.
Even though Firewatch is an on-rails story game with absolutely no genuine risk, lovers of Subnautica should give it a try anyhow. You’ll want to open every drawer and read every message you come across, even if the game’s exploring is minimal. Firewatch is similar to Subnautica in that it has a beautiful setting and a strong sense of atmosphere. You can get lost in Firewatch’s universe almost completely. It’s the pinnacle of the “waling sim” genre: flawless, stunning, and sure to linger in the mind for a long time.
Astroneer is an adorable exploration game with unexpected depth, especially when it comes to establishing a base. Gathering resources from the environment, scaling mountains, and burrowing into caves, you’ll travel between its seven planets. Then, when you’ve gathered enough materials, you may go back and make useful equipment out of them by connecting science labs, generators, solar panels, and oxygen tanks as you like. With a friend along for the voyage, you can enjoy a pleasant space adventure with a progressive sense of growth.
If you’re playing with a friend, this is an excellent open-water survival game where you’ll need to build ramps to board islands you see in the distance and occasionally dive into the depths for important items. Like Subnautica, progress means upgrading your gear and increasing your oxygen supply. The raft grows from a simple four-by-four grid to a more complicated, multi-leveled floating platform as you continue to build it up. This is one of the few ocean-based survival games worth playing, even if it isn’t as polished as Subnautica (it’s still in Early Access, so expect some issues).
9. The Forest
As in Subnautica, The Forest has water monsters that give you the creeps, but instead of ocean willies, you’re up against a gang of hungry cannibal mutants who want to eat you. A plane accident leaves you lone survivor in an awful jungle, where you must chopping down trees for wood and salvaging whatever food you can, while creating ever more advanced gear as you go. The continual threat of mutants keeps you on your toes, and you’ll always be on guard. Flexibility in creating your base and a trail of clues allow you to explore its complex universe in your own way.
It’s impossible for anyone to hear your screams in space, yet they can hear a chicken poking. Breathedge is known for its wacky humor, and this is a good example of it. It’s up to “The Man” to bring his grandpa’s remains to an outer space funeral, but things go terribly awry in this survival-themed game. Your ship has vanished, leaving you stranded in a savage universe littered with the remains of the dead. For the time being, at least. Attempt to remain alive long enough to figure out what’s going on in this fantastically strange story by constructing spaceships and other contraptions. You won’t be sorry you did it.