I have already talked so much about Subnautica on this site but I can’t pass up this opportunity to talk about what it does with vehicles. I feel like, in games, vehicles and mounts are usually a straight upgrade of some sort — you move faster, have more power, get more maneuverability, are able to go places you weren’t before — and that’s often very fun. But Subnautica’s vehicles — the Seamoth, Cyclops, even the Prawn Suit — come with a tradeoff. Despite being able to go deeper, and having a barrier between yourself and the leviathans, piloting a vehicle (most apparent with the Cyclops (this huge, base-sized submersible) restricts your visibility and ability to turn and view the world around you. So now you have protection from the Reapers and other beasts, but ocassionally you’ll hear a cry, and then a loud banging and gnashing against the side of your ship, and you’re way up in the cockpit without the ability to turn and see what’s attacking you. Which is really cool — and finds a way to balance vehicles in the design ethos of a game that wants to keep you on edge, focused on survival, and always a little scared.
…oh, in other news, the Breath of the Wild motorcycle rocks. I just wish you didn’t have to play through essentially the entire story and DLC to unlock it, but oh well.