The very idea of early 19th-century whale hunting seems bizarre now, and if Herman Melville’s Moby Dick is anything to go by, even most people at the time knew it was a daft enterprise. While the book is a classic, there are precious few games based on it – but Essex: The Whale Hunter aims to fill that gap.
Polish developer 3T Games is behind Essex, and the simulation game is set on and around the island of Nantucket in 1819, just before the American whaling industry reached its peak. Just as it’s described in Moby Dick, you’ll gather a crew and climb aboard a rickety wooden ship to hunt the world’s largest creatures: magnificent and fearsome sperm whales, known as cachalots.
“Herman Melville’s masterpiece serves as our main inspiration during development, and we’re striving to properly capture the unique nature of this multi-dimensional novel,” said Rafał Jelonek, 3T Games CEO. He points out that the world Melville describes no longer exists – the bustling, offal-soaked Nantucket of the early 19th century has given way to a picturesque tourist town, the island just a stone’s throw from the ritzy Martha’s Vineyard off Massachusetts’ southern coast.