Mermaids is an experimental massively multiplayer game set in an underwater world in which players take the roles of hatchlings coming to life in the ruins of a long-extinct mermaid culture. The over-arching goal and storyline is to rebuild the lost Mermaid culture and reclaim their various skills and cultural practices (such as magic), while at the same time trying to avoiding the mistakes that caused the extinction of their ancestors. Players will quickly discover that in order to survive, they must also revive the damaged ecosystem, and ultimately learn to work with it in a harmonious fashion.
Mermaids has four primary design credos that the team was given as its “high-level” design constraints:
•Think socially; act procedurally
•Appeal to diverse players
•It doesn’t have to be complicated to be complex
The game has no combat and no grinding. Instead players must revive dead coral, collect items that they can assemble into wands and other tools, and spawn new fish schools to replenish the ecosystem. Mermaids uses a unique gesture-based interaction system where players draw symbols in the water to cast spells and perform other tasks.
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