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Submarine-themed horror game sees spike in sales following Titanic submersible mishap

The horrifying Titanic submersible tragedy in which the death of five passengers on board was recently reported has resulted in a surge in the sales of “Iron Lung”, a submarine simulation horror game. Yet, the spike in sales as a result of dark humor “feels so wrong,” according to its developer.

“Iron Lung” has been making the rounds online following a 24-hour-long news coverage on the vanished Titan submersible being controlled by a game controller — later found destroyed due to implosion — as many people have been comparing this lo-fi horror video game to the recent real-life incident.

In this game, a player will be put inside a rusty submarine crafted out of scrapped spaceship parts. The player must navigate the submarine through a sea of blood on an alien moon to take photos of key locations. With no modern navigation resources, the only object that the player can use is a vintage camera that photographs the dangerous ocean and produces low-quality snaps. Moreover, the player has to rely on proximity sensors and an incomplete map to operate the vessel.

Despite Iron Lung’s popularity today, the breakout indie game developer David Szymanski seems to feel weird with a sudden increase in revenue on the Steam game store because of the disaster. Szymanski took to Twitter on June 21 to share his sentiments toward the issue. He shared a graph of Iron Lung’s sales data over the last two days and said that he felt “kinda uncomfortable” about the surge in sales.

“I definitely see the dark humor in this whole Titanic sub thing, it’s just… like, I made Iron Lung the most nightmarish thing I could think of, and knowing real people are in that situation right now is pretty horrific, even if it was their own bad decisions,” the game creator said.

“Like all the jokes I’ve been seeing are hilarious but also good lord nobody should have to die like that,” he continued.

On June 23, the US Coast Guard found debris at the bottom of the sea floor, which came from the missing Titan sub. Authorities then confirmed that the five passengers aboard died from a catastrophic implosion.

Anyway, this is not the first time that a game has been linked to a catastrophic event. In case you’ve never heard it, Plague Inc., a real-time strategy simulation video game to infect humanity with a fatal virus, was linked to the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020. Based on Ndemic Creations, the game was downloaded 160 million times in 2021 at the height of the pandemic.


Other POP! stories that you might like:

Twitter debunks tweet claiming that ‘My Heart Will Go On’ climbed up the charts in light of the Titan sub mishap

Did ‘The Simpsons’ predict the Titanic submarine disappearance 17 years ago?

Terms ‘cis,’ ‘cisgender’ considered slurs on Twitter, according to Elon Musk

This work-in-progress artist-centric protection tool protects your art from AI mimicry

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