The Ship is an online multiplayer-focused game developed by Outerlight and published by Valve. It had humble beginnings as a user-created modification using the Half-Life game engine, but a standalone version of the game was developed after it received a large fan following. This full-fledged version of the game was professionally developed for the Source engine, first being distributed through Valve's Steam service and later through retail stores. In the game, the mysterious Mr. X invites the player character to be a passenger on a luxurious cruise ship in the 1920's before it is revealed that the player character is a pawn in a game where they must kill or be killed.
In The Ship's multiplayer component, each player is given the name of a opponent that they must find and kill, creating a dynamic in which each player has one target but also one one person targeting them. Players do not start off with any type of weapon and instead must make use of those they can find in the environment. These weapons are frequently items not canonically designed for lethal purposes but include straight razors, frying pans, and handguns. The player can use these weapons both to kill their target and defend themselves from their attacker.
The player is awarded money for killing their target, although the exact size of their reward is dependent on the type of weapon they used. Although a gun is an easy way to kill a target, that kill may award less money than if the player were to use a golf club. The player at the end of the game with the most money is the winner. This method of determining a victor rewards player skill and ingenuity above raw kill count. During matches, players must not only remain aware of other players but also computer-controlled security guards and cameras. If either of them catch players, they will be imprisoned, and the person hunting the imprisoned player will be informed of their incarceration, allowing them to more easily find and destroy that player.
Player characters also have basic needs which must be tended to, including Hunger, Sleep, Hygiene, and Entertainment. If a player fails to manage these stats, it can give their opponents a larger window of opportunity to attack them when they are unaware.
The Ship also includes a single-player mode which functions identically to the multiplayer but uses bots instead of other human players.
Sequel(s) and Remake
According to The Ship's official website, a sequel to the original retail game is under development. In 2010, Outerlight released Bloody Good Time, a spiritual successor to The Ship suing the same basic gameplay concepts with a new art style and theme.
A Kickstarter for a literal sequel, "The Ship 2: Full Steam Ahead", was run in 2012, but failed to reach its funding goal of £128,000. Development on The Ship 2 was then moved to Steam Greenlight, though there has been no further news has been released since January 2013. The Ship 2 was described as a steampunk take on the original game, with the setting being a massive luxury liner airship, and promised new concepts and murder methods in keeping with the new setting.
In 2015, Blazing Griffin announced the development of a HD remastered version of The Ship, titled The Ship: Remasted, which entered early access in early 2016 and was given a full release later that year. The company also released www.theshipgame.com which follows the story of Lucille Franklin O'Sullivan, who finds herself aboard the SS Cotopaxi when people start disappearing.
Processor: 1.8 GHz ProcessorMemory: 512MB RAMGraphics: DirectX 8 level graphics card (1024x768)OS: Windows 2000/XP/ME/98
Processor: 2.8 GHz ProcessorMemory: 1024MB RAMGraphics: DirectX 9 capable Graphics Card (1024x768)OS: Windows 2000/XP/ME/98