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75 of 85 people found the following review helpful
on March 27, 2011
Just got home with this not knowing what to expect. I wasn't looking forward to the usual learning curve that submarine games usually require. I expected just an okay game. BOY WAS I WRONG! Right out of the box the game is completely intuitive and visually stunning. The thing that had my jaw dropping on the floor was the "periscope" game (one of three game types). You hold your 3DS up and in front of you like you're looking through a periscope...and it's JUST LIKE LOOKING THROUGH A PERISCOPE I MEAN TO TELL YOU!!! To look around you turn your body and your 3DS pans the view according to your body movements just like the real thing! It's incredibly fluid. The fun factor was fully engaged the first minute I started playing this thing. The underwater 3D effects pull you right into the game and it's best to play the periscope game standing up because you've got enemy ships everywhere and you have to do some quick 180's. (So much for playing on the toilet!) This game adds a whole new dimension (no pun intended) to game play. I love it and I expect it will be a favorite of most who buy it. The other game types are superb as well. The graphics are beautiful and just plain fun. This game truly shines and delivered far more than my expectations! AWESOME JOB, NINTENDO!!!!!

EDIT: Having played it a little longer now, I've found that the periscope mode missions are more like mini-games in a time trial format. They're short but sweet. For a submarine game, this mode, while very fun, doesn't offer any depth of gameplay (pun intended). You simply try to beat your previous score. However, it is a visual treat, especially when you select to do battle in a storm. It makes for a nice "quickie" game fix when you don't have time to get into the main game. This periscope mode seems to be more of an added feature rather than a part of the main game which is a side-scrolling "get me from point A to point B" without crashing or getting blown up, torpedo-launching, maneuvering-style adventure. I said side-scrolling game, but don't let that fool you. The 3D environment draws you in beautifully. Part of the fun of playing this title is just enjoying the visuals. ( the way...I'm a 55 year old, so serene visuals are appealing to me. I can't speak for the young 'uns.) I still stick to the 5 star rating. Carry on, men. And don't forget, "Loose lips sink ships!"

CORRECTION: Awesome periscope mode CAN BE PLAYED WHILE ON THE TOILET! (Whew!) After seeing another review I read that you can use the stylus to pan the periscope without having to stand. (I'm somewhat of an idiot.) It would have been a little nicer if they had provided a customizable button option, though. Launching torpedoes must be done with the right-hand buttons while using the stylus left-handed which is a little awkward for us righties. I was going to mention this to the captain, but the last crew member that complained was strapped to the periscope outside and taken for a heck of a ride. That'll be all. As you were...carry on, men.

ADDITIONAL EDIT: Well, the game just keeps getting better! Just played the turn-based portion of the game and WOW! I'm lovin' it even more. So, just to recap...there's the awesome periscope game; the missions game; and the turn-based game! This is really a 3-in-1 package. The more I play it, the more I appreciate the value I've gotten for my money! This is just one of those rare occasions where the developer decided to go beyond giving you your money's worth. I really can't say enough about how great this game is! It is just a beautiful package. I'll even go as far as to say it's the best title released for the 3ds so far. (I'm basing that opinion on reviews I've read of games I don't have plus my personal experience with the ones I do have which are Pilotwings, Asphalt, and Street Fighter.)
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on March 28, 2011
This is a submarine sim with various missions, challenges, and modes of play with several different subs to use, and it has good replayability for this reason. To be honest, I don't think I would have normally picked up a submarine sim, and did so only because this was an interesting looking 3DS release title. I'm glad I picked it up, because it's obvious a lot of work and polish went into the game and it's a lot of fun.

The gameplay is pretty simple to learn. Essentially the challenge of play comes from the control constraints built in for the sub. If you could simply control the sub with the analog slider and use the buttons for firing, there would be little challenge. Instead, the control is done through depth and thrust sliders that must be individually manipulated to guide the sub. There are different types of missiles and a cloaking device you can manipulate as well. All the controls are done from the touch screen.

The periscope missions are also intuitive. You move around by moving the 3DS where you want to look, but you can alternatively use the stylus to rotate the periscope around by dragging it along the bottom of the screen. You can zoom in on targets and missile them down. The trick here is in spotting and leading the ships or subs based on their distance and speed. Not as easy as it sounds! The 3D really helps with this mode.

Out of all the release titles, this one definitely showcases the 3D effects better than any other. You can move the slider all the way up and it really enhances the scene. A lot of detail is present in the ocean from shipwrecks to undersea volcanoes to different bubbles and jets and schools of fish, and they all use screen depth masterfully. This is one seriously beautiful looking game. Periscope mode is no exception to this, with very realistic looking ocean effects.

If this game had been released later on in the life of the 3DS, it may have been easily overlooked, but as a release title, it's one of the better ones and the best showcase of 3D as you can max out the slider with no issues. Overall I give it 4 stars because it's a beautiful and well-executed game, but not a game changer.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
After much deliberation, I finally decided to go with "Steel Diver" as my first game for my new 3DS. It came down to this and "Super Street Fighter IV 3D," but this won out for a couple of reasons. First off, I generally like my handheld games to be a bit more unique. I've found in the past that I generally play games on a handheld device (DS, PSP, iPod Touch) the more it seems to try to be a "console" game, the less I end up liking it. Basically, I want my games for my handheld devices to be something that really can ONLY be found on a handheld device. The other reason it won out is because I'm not very good at fighting games. I figured that I would go ahead and get "Street Fighter" later, but for now I wanted a game that wasn't going to make me frustratingly angry.

So I took the plunge and ordered "Steel Diver." It arrived quickly, like everything I order from Amazon, and I opened it and threw it into the 3DS right away.

I was impressed by the menu. It's basic, but really easy to navigate and understand. The game responded to taps on the touch screen instantly with no lag or anything. The game starts and gives you a really basic (and pretty generic) you're fighting against some random rogue bad guys. That's really about it. It doesn't give you much of a story, and that was a bit of a let down to me...but not enough that it actually detracted from the game at all.

I fired up the first mission, which is a training mission. It's basically just there to show you the control elements. It teaches you how to dive, surface, move forward and backward, fire your weapons, and use your countermeasures. It was during this first mission that I really started to enjoy the game. Controlling the sub takes a little bit of getting used to, but it works, and it works surprisingly well. In no time I was moving my sub around under the sea, destroying enemy ships, and blowing boulders out of my way with well placed torpedoes.

I found myself really enjoying the sound effects in the game, even though they are quite basic. The sounds it makes when you are moving the controls are just like the sounds you hear in a movie when a captain is steering a submarine. I was really impressed by how authentic it sounded.

I also discovered that I really enjoyed the look of the game. With the 3D slider adjusted, it really does give you a sense of depth of field. You can see schools of fish and underwater plants in the background and your submarine glides silently by them. It really is pretty amazing to look at, even if it doesn't truly further the game experience at all. What I mean by that is, playing the game in 3D is fun to look at, but you won't be missing any of the real gameplay elements if you turn the 3D off. With that said, I highly suggest playing with the game in 3D. You bought a 3DS, you might as well use it's main function, right??

I played through several missions in my first sitting and enjoyed every one of them. The environments were all great looking and unique, and although the missions were fairly similar, there was just enough difference to make you feel like you hadn't been doing the same thing over and over again. With that said, I'm not the biggest fan of having to finish each of the first five levels with all three subs just to get to the last two levels. I would have rather had those last two levels just unlocked as soon as you finished the fifth mission, or even better would have been if there were 15 total levels before unlocking the final two. But it is what it is, and I'm also not letting that detract from the overall fun that this game has given me.

In between levels you get to go to a periscope mode where you use the screens on the 3DS as if they were an actual periscope on a submarine. You even have the option of spinning your body around and using the gyroscope inside the 3DS to aim the torpedoes. These missions are timed, and they are pretty short. I'm actually glad that they are like that. They give you a sense of urgency while playing, and make it seem pretty hectic. You can play these levels as a stand alone game if you like, but I prefer to play through a mission before giving them a go. They seem like a perfect way to end the mission you've just played.

I find that the thing I like the most about "Steel Diver" is the way it controls. It's totally unique and something that really could only be done on a dual screen device, like the 3DS. I know that this game originally started out as a tech demo for the original DS quite a few years ago, but I'm glad Nintendo gave the go ahead to turn it into a fully fledged experience for this new 3DS. The whole package, in my opinion, comes together in a way that can only be experienced on the DS, and for me, that makes this a five star game.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2011
It seems very much like a proof of concept of the gyroscope motion sensing technology but it was never developed into a full game. It has a nice free for all type mode that I just sit and play in 5-10min spurts but the overall storyline is minimal. To me this puts this game squarely in the small casual type games you would see on iOS or Android OS devices and should have the <$5 price point to match it. Again, a fun little time killing casual game, but not a full complete game.. If you are deciding between this and another game, I would suggest the other game.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 2, 2014
I bought this at target. Its awsome!!! You get to drive 3 types of submarines.and there's periscope strike to duel engender love it.the levels are kind of hard. But there challenging.although since I bought it at target it was 39.99. Shane on you target. I should of bought it on amazon. Thank for reading.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon September 11, 2012
I got this game two days ago and have not put it down since. Honestly speaking, the game is decent and a great way to kill some time, but at the same time, I would not pay more than $20 for it. As good as it migh be, it does not justify a higher price.

You pilot a submarine through different stages. You have 3 types of subs, which differ by size. The bigger the size the more complicated it is to steer, but the more power you have. Each sub can be decorated with decals that you earn by finishing missions.

There are 3 types of gameplay:
Missions, which take you and your choice of one of 3 subs, through different stages/maps where you must get from point A to point B while you encounter enemies and obstacles, the maps differ in size, each time you finish a level, you enter a bonus periscope level which ony lasts about minute. Each mission can be played as many times as you like with whatever sub you want (out of the 3), for better times, etc.

Periscope Strike, turns the upper screen on your 3DS into the lens of your sub's periscope, you can ony dive, zoom and shoot torpedoes, the point of this game is too look for both enemy's ships and subs; you are given three sub-choices, to hunt enemy ships, enemy ships in a storm and enemy subs. You must aim by moving the 3DS around, so sitting on your couch won't do it, you must rotate constantly.

The last gameplay mode is called Steel Commander, which is a mix of the old school battleship game and this game's own twist; you can play this online against human players or offline against AI.

Not terrible, but not great. They're average. You get to see fish and some nice backgrounds, but the overall quality is just average. Some textures are blocky and the subs themselves have a lot of jagged lines, but don't let that keep you from buying the game, it is very entertaining.

3D Effect:
Spot-on through out, except for periscope mode. When the 3D is engaged and you are playing any periscope mission/level, it can be pretty distracting and flat out confusing, because you must move with the 3DS to be able to rotate the periscope, and as you all know, to get the perfect 3D view, the 3DS must be held at a certain angle and so while playing periscope, you must not only move the 3DS and your body, but also use the stylus or your finger to shoot torpedoes, zoom and dive.
With the exception of Periscope mode, I definitely recommend playing it on 3D through out. The additional layers that the 3D gives you, makes the game and the overall experience that much better.

You get sonar sounds, torpedoes and background music. They all fit and do a great job at creating the right atmosphere for this game. You also hear voices, which are from the crew and commander, but they're only indicating things like, full speed, dive, etc. I'm glad to report that they do not get old or annoying and are well placed at the right moments and only when necessary.
The only con about the volume, the lack of it. I felt that the volume was extremely low. I'm using a 3DS XL, so I'm not sure how this sounds on a regular 3DS.

At its current price, this game should not be passed, you will get a good amount of playtime out of this tittle, even after you are done with all the missions, you can always play the Steel Commander mode for added time and value. Of course, like I said before, I wouldn't pay more than $20, but that's just my opinion. I gave this game a 5 star rank, because quite honestly, it is fun and there isn't much to complaint about for the price and the amount of content it has.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This is going to be a short review, so don't expect me to go into further detail.

Steel Diver was originally a tech demo for the original Nintendo DS. What was unexpected was that this was actually going to be a full-priced game. But it wasn't released for the DS. It was released for the 3DS.

Steel Diver is supposed to be a game that should be enjoyed within small chunks of gameplay, not under one sitting.

The basic gameplay is that you control a submarine. Not by using the D-Pad or the buttons, but by the stylus, of course (After all, it DID start life as a tech demo). There are controls on the bottom screen that you must slide or tap using the stylus to move the submarine or shoot torpedoes at enemy subs.

While it does kinda simulate taking control of an actual submarine (or so it appears to be), it is actually a pretty fun experience. The only problem that I have is that when you try to battle an enemy ship, you still have to control your ship to restrain yourself from bumping into anything, and the enemy may attack after you get yourself ready. At least you can avoid getting hit and prepare yourself once you master it.

One minor complaint that may be major for those who crave huge titles is that this game may not really be extremely lengthy.

But overall, this is a pretty good game, and I assure you that your undersea voyage will be very enjoyable.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 27, 2012
Bought this for my 11 year old nephew for Christmas and he hasn't stopped playing it!

He says "it's a good game"
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2013
This is a great game and loads of fun. As you drive your sub you face an ocean laced with mines, enemy subs firing on you, ships dropping depth charges, huge rocks that you have to blow up or crash and much more. If you get hit and have to fix a leak you can't control your sub so get it slowed or stopped before fixing the leak. You can continue to challenge yourself by replaying levels with different subs and try to get better time getting to the goal. The 3D effect is terrific. The game utilizes the advantages of the 3DS, especially the 3DSxl extremely well. The sound and music in the game are also great. I highly recommend this game to anyone.
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on March 15, 2013
I'll keep this simple... I liked this game. I liked it enough to beat all the missions with all the subs. It was a decent time-waster. Honestly, even though I gave iot 4 stars personally, it's more realistically probably 3 stars.

There are also probably two kinds of people out there that would determine if you enjoy this or not: People with patience and are ok with a short casual experience, and most other gamers. If you fit into the first category, you MAY like this game. If you fit into the first category AND you have an interest in submarine games, you will likely enjoy this game. Others? Questionable.

What might keep you from buying this:
The game is a bit short, and lacking in the interesting feature department. There are 7 missions with 3 different subs; each sub has it's own qualities. Unfortunately, you only get Missions 1-5 to play up-front. Missions 6 & 7 are locked until you beat 1-5 with all 3 subs. This can be tedious because you're literally just doing the same thing 3x over with no difference other than the sub controls. They tried to cram in replayability by giving you decals to collect by beating the missions over and over, but I saw little point in re-repeating them after beating 6 missions 3 times over and only completing 3 worthless decals. They also have Time Attack and periscope missions you can play up-front at any time, but they're really just a cheap reason to have more "options" and offer nothing of substance, and don't even net you more decals.

So, why did I like it? Well, I come from the C64 and NES background in gaming, where the C64 had lots of simulators (among other things) and the NES had its share of slower games too. The closest thing I can liken this to, personally is SILENT SERVICE on the NES. It's a slow burn, but enjoyable for those of us who like sneaky stealthy games once in a while.

So, without going into mass details, read reviews, watch some videos, and figure out where you may stand...
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