My project so far has led my research through the Underwater World, initially beginning with specifically underwater cities. However as I continued my research I found myself expending out to also include such topics as Mythical creatures from the deep as well as shipwrecks and ancient myths about the underwater world. I am mainly interested in the mysteries that the depths of the ocean bring to human kind and the ways in which we go about uncovering them.
Underwater cities hold many questions for archaeologists, why did it sink? What was there before? What else is buried in the ruins? These are all questions that could potentially be used to build a game based around exploration and archaeology. Famous ruins such as Cleopatra’s lost palace interest me especially due to the extremely recognisable architecture, stone sphynxes and statues of ancient Egyptian gods and goddesses.
I also looked into mythical creatures. I started with the Kraken, a Nordic mythological creature that was considered to attack ships with its long tentacles or if that failed it would swim in circles around the ships to create a maelstrom that would drag the vessel down. Along this theme I was lead to the work of Ray Harryhausen, a stop motion film maker that used the kraken in his film Clash of the Titans, the original of which was realised as a stop motion in 1981 but was later remade starring Liam Neeson in 2010. This film narrative related to many of the ancient Egyptian gods which related really well back to the lost cities. Researching the Kraken led me to looking at the Leviathan, a Hebrew legend similar to the kraken of a giant sea monster that can breath fire and has skin so armoured that swords and harpoons would bounce off.
I also looked into the different myths from around the world surrounding Mermaids, I found that many beliefs on mermaids did not portray them in the same way as Ariel from the little mermaid was portrayed; as an innocent character in a shell bra. They were actually the creature blamed for many disappearances and disasters that happen around water. In fact the Brazilian Iara, was known to lure sailors to her underwater palace to become her lovers.
Shipwrecks interest me due again to the mysteries surrounding their sinking. How did they sink? What were they carrying? Ships such as the Nuestra Senora de Las Mercedes or “The Lady of Mercy” are particularly interesting as it is considered to be the ship that held the largest excavation of treasure ever found; around £314 million of gold and silver.
The Queen Anne’s Revenge is another very famous ship although rarely know by name. This is the ships that was the vehicle behind the legendary pirate Blackbeard’s greatest achievements.
I think looking into the hidden treasures of sunken cities and shipwrecks could be an interesting objective for a game.