Ultra-Indie Spotlight Sunday: Sea Salt
One would think that the bishop of an eldritch god worshipping church would know not to anger said god. The ordained bishop of you, Father Dagon, in Sea Salt seems to think otherwise. When the head of your profane church goes off, what else is there to do but retaliate? With all sorts of nautical nonsense at your disposal, it’s time to send your crustacean and fish forces to take down the church.
Not every horror game needs to be scary. Sometimes, it’s fun to be the one who does the scaring. Games we’ve previously covered, like Carrion, place you in the shoes of the horrific monster, who lives only to terrify. And in some ways, that’s just as disturbing as having to hide in a locker from a goblin or running from a ghoul. Sea Salt is one of these games.
Non-Wanky Game Recap:
Sea Salt is a mix of action-adventure as well as real-time strategy. You control a gang of critters who will follow your cursed cursor and swarm whatever unfortunate townsperson you may click on. As you progress through the game, you gain access to new creatures to control. You begin with a handful of angry slugs and by the end, you’ve got a militia of cultists and crabs and flies and more, each with their own unique strengths and abilities.
It’s honestly a pretty silly game. Sea Salt is not too complex. The basic strategy is to simply swarm the townsfolk and eat them and turn their precious mortal bodies into more fuel for the eldritch army. But as you get further in, a simple zerg rush is not enough. You need to strategically scare the pants off the biggest threats in order to safely advance. It’s a grand old time. And perhaps I’m a bit of an empath, but seeing all these horrific deaths and terrified folk is pretty disturbing.
There’s a few big problems with it. Limiting the player to just keyboard controls is not my preference (though it does allow me to play in the optimal gaming position; on my back, neck craned forward with a laptop burning a hole in my sternum). Some more advanced strategy would make for some more interesting gameplay, though I think it’s perfectly fine as is. And finally, Sea Salt is a little low on content for a game this expensive. I bought it on sale and would recommend you do the same.
How To Fix It:
I think it would be interesting, though obviously unrealistic, to add mouse controls in addition to the keyboard. This could allow for the use of two squads of creeps and critters, in turn allowing more complex strategy. And of course, more levels to play would most certainly make Sea Salt worth the full price
Horror means more than simply getting hit with a jump scare. It’s an aesthetic to be captured and explored through different means. Sea Salt is a silly spin on the Lovecraft mythos. It’s both fun and funny. And yet, there is some inescapable dread in the mass slaughter of a seaside town just because a god got mad. There’s something to be learned from that.
You can purchase Sea Salt on Steam by clicking here.