Dredge has a few unique characteristics that make it a lot of fun to play.
Most players who have played Dredge have positive things to say about it, whether it’s the game’s uniqueness, the scary but welcoming Lovecraftian aspect, the mechanics, the music…the list seems infinite. But they all seem to agree on one thing: Dredge is truly a one-of-a-kind game that gives a very enjoyable experience.
The protagonist is a fisherman who becomes stuck in a small coastal hamlet. The mayor is generous enough (or is he?) to present him with a new boat that he must repair in order to pay off his debt by capturing fish. Everything appears to be in order, and fishing appears to be a simple task with 125 deep sea…creatures. But not everything is as it appears, especially when night falls.
Unusual Genre Mash-Up
Fishing games are frequently marketed as tranquil, meditative, and relaxing. And they are, because they mostly involve repetitive motions and have a clear and/or open goal for the player, not to mention the overall calm mood. The music, colours, and gameplay mechanics are all designed to create a sense of serenity.
Dredge is not one of those people. Although it is still a cosy game, it is creepy-cozy, like the cosy of Halloween or old gothic films. It’s not “mainly” one genre or the other; it’s horror and fishing in equal parts, and it’s as unnerving as it is calm, as if Lovecraft himself decided to move into a white picket fence neighbourhood and mingle. To say the least, the results are intriguing.
Simple But Not Simplistic Mechanics
Dredge had the potential to be one of those games where even the slightest thing became a challenge and the gamer had to spend hours attempting to progress, until they eventually had to cheat, turn it off, or withdraw from the world until they figured it out. Thankfully, the Dredge developers determined that the game had plenty to offer without adding difficulties.
The objectives are simple: catch fish (by pushing a button and then solving an easy puzzle), earn money by selling the fish (self-explanatory, there are buyers in town), and enhance the boat (there is limited capacity but it is still very, very manageable). The concept is that as the player is doing all of this. Strange things begin to happen, highlighting the game’s psychological side.
Location, Location, Location
Small communities always have something special to offer gamers. A frightening yearning for a mystery that could be contained. But is not unsolvable – if the hero is ready to dig deep in what appears to be their own grave. In other words, small-town mysteries are both cosy and creepy, much like Dredge’s overall vibe.
It appears that the setting and genre complement each other wonderfully. It’s not just one thing, but a mash-up that, despite the fact that it’s not supposed to work, actually does. Greater Marrow, the coastal town, is attempting to appear unimportant and pleasant. And it may succeed depending on how the gamer chooses to play.
More than only the atmosphere and story are used in this game to get under the player’s skin. While the hero’s circumstances certainly contribute to the overall feeling that “something isn’t right here,” the actual dread comes from the player not knowing, or not being sure, whether what they are experiencing is due to the terror or because the game is “like this.”
The creators added a feature called “Panic Metre,” which depicts how afraid the fisherman is at any particular time. If they’re in the dark and haven’t upgraded the boat’s light so they can see further. It’s safe to think they’ll be a little nervous. However, this can quickly escalate into full-fledged terror when kids begin to perceive things. That may or may not exist and may or may not harm them. The player, like in a good gothic tale, never knows if it’s all in their head and if they can take any more or if they’ve had enough.
The Intriguing Side Quests
Some objectives in Dredge appear to be basic (or at least appear to be). While others require the player to make decisions that will have irreversible consequences. For example, in the Lost Dog Pursuit mission, players can choose to find a home for a stray dog. Which requires little more than talking to people and seeing who wants to adopt it.
Other quests, on the other hand, must be completed while the player is in a panic, at night, or doing something they have avoided doing throughout Funny Shooter 2 game. Some quests may even vanish if the player is not cautious and follows the game’s rules strictly.
Dredge’s sound designers gave it their hardest to make this game a true example of how sound can be a part of the plot rather than just an add-on. The combination of natural sounds and a simple but frightening song makes the gameplay appear to be a ticking time bomb.
There’s a lot to say about music in this game, from whispers to the constant usage of peaceful sea noises. To the sounds the boat makes while fishing or sailing. The soundtrack is largely relaxing piano music that serves as a reminder of how good things can be. Which becomes doubly disturbing when the sun sets and all of the night’s sounds seem to attack the boat and the player.
Dredge is now available for PC, macOS, Linux, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and Nintendo Switch.