SOMA, the next big thing from Swedish horrormeisters Frictional Games, is not where you think it is.
Until now, SOMA has had the appearance of a game set on a remote space station, or perhaps an outpost on an extraterrestrial world. I even described it as having a notable System Shock 2 vibe in a write-up of last month's "Theta" trailer. But this month's trailer offers up a pretty big surprise: Frictional's new game world actually has a lot more in common with BioShock.
The trailer speaks for itself and while it doesn't say much, it does reveal that the game will be set not in deep space, but at the bottom of the sea. "Most of our earth is covered in ocean, and yet it's something that we know very little about. It is an incredibly hostile environment filled with strange creatures, and it is right on our door step," the studio said in post on the PlayStation Blog. "The ocean is an alien world, and we've only scratched the surface. We feel it's the perfect place to explore in a horror game."
As surprising as it is, it's also a pretty brilliant idea. Deep space and deep water have a lot in common, but deep water - the true depths that SOMA promises to explore - is more "real" and thus quite possibly a more effective way to scare the pants off of people. After all, going into space is pure fantasy, but going underwater is something most of us can relate to, and often not in a good way.
SOMA is due out sometime in 2015 for the PC and PlayStation 4.