The game is a sheer delight. If you can recall as a kid wondering why your friends' parents played with train sets, this game is like bestowing that same level of control and curiosity on a young video-game player. There's a vast world here for players to explore and etch out, and discoveries are everywhere. Once you get over the initial head-scratching that happens with any strategy game, Sunless Sea shows itself to be alarmingly straightforward -- wander out, explore, see what you find, and bring news of it back home. All the way, you try to upgrade your crew and ship. Plus, there are so many chance encounters that make your story uniquely yours. No two playthroughs will be alike, and that's the mark of an interesting, riveting game.
On a more granular level? Combat is uncomplicated. You'll run across other ships or sea life, tap a key to engage battle, and click to fire your cannons. You'll need to keep an eye on your crew's hunger and fear levels, as well as your ship's fuel, making time- and risk-management the utmost priorities for players. But truly, what makes Sunless Sea shine are its story possibilities and the tales you can weave. For example, during one session, you can become a wandering poet-turned-captain, simply sailing in search of stories to write a memoir on and establish a legacy: Strange people in strange lands were met, and although the captain's ship was sunk, his unfinished works lived on through the crew. Thoroughly imaginative and a lot of fun, Sunless Sea is an easy one to recommend for adventure fans.