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Periscope screenshot from the 2003 game Danger from the Deep
A submarine in Second Life

A submarine simulator is a video game in which the player commands a submarine. The usual form of the game is to go on a series of missions, each of which features a number of encounters where the goal is to sink surface ships and to survive counterattacks by destroyers.[citation needed] Submarine simulators are notable for the highly-variable pace of the game;[citation needed] it may take hours of simulated time to get into position to attack a well-defended convoy,[citation needed] and sub simulators typically include an option for players to adjust the ratio of real time to simulated time up and down as desired.[citation needed]

Most submarine simulators use World War II as the setting; its submarine warfare was lengthy and intense, the historical material is extensive, and the limited capabilities of the period's submarines place a high premium on game playing skill. Games usually feature either US submarines in the Pacific Ocean, or German U-boats in the Atlantic Ocean. Another popular category is modern attack submarines, especially those of the Los Angeles class also known as "688s" after the hull identification number of the first vessel of the class.

Game displays generally include an overhead map or "radar" view, showing the submarine and any ships whose position can be detected, the periscope view if the sub is close enough to the surface, a set of gauges showing depth and course, and a boat plan showing torpedo availability, damage to various subsystems and other in-game issues that may arise.

The first submarine simulator available to the civilian public was Thorn EMI's Submarine Commander of 1982.[citation needed]


Name Year
1914 Shells of Fury 2007
Battle Submarine 1995
688 Attack Sub 1988
688(I) Hunter/Killer 1997
Aces of the Deep 1994
AquaNox series 1996–2020
Archimedean Dynasty (AquaNox) 1996
Barotrauma 2019–
Cold Waters 2017
Command: Aces of the Deep 1995
Crush Depth: U-Boat Simulator 2021
Dangerous Waters 2005
Danger from the Deep (Open source) 2003
Das Boot: German U-Boat Simulation 1990–91
Deadly Tide 1996
Depthcharge 1977
Deep Fighter: The Tsunami Offensive 2000
Dive to the Titanic 2010
Enigma: Rising Tide 2003/2005
Fast Attack: High Tech Submarine Warfare 1996
GATO 1984
Grey Wolf: Hunter of the North Atlantic 1994
Harpoon 1989
The Hunt for Red October 1987–90
Hunter Killer 1989
Iron Lung 2022
Iron Wolves 1996
Iron Wolf VR 2017
OpenSSN (Open source) 2010
Operation Neptune 1991
Periscope 1966
Radar Mission (Mode B) 1990
Red Storm Rising 1988
Sea Wolf 1983
Silent Depth Submarine Simulation 2016, 2018
Silent Service 1985
Silent Service II 1990
Silent Hunter 1996
Silent Hunter II 2001
Silent Hunter III 2005
Silent Hunter 4: Wolves of the Pacific 2007
Silent Hunter 5: Battle of the Atlantic 2010
Silent Steel 1995
SSN-21 Seawolf 1994
Steel Diver 2011
Submarine Commander 1982
Sub Battle Simulator 1987–88
Sub Command 2001
Sub Culture 1997
Sub Hunt 1982
Sub Hunter 1977
Sub Mission 1986
Subwar 2050 1994
Tom Clancy's SSN 1996
UBOAT 2019
U-Boat Simulator (Android) 2013
Up Periscope! 1986
Under the Ice 1987
Virtual Sailor 1999
Wolfpack 1990
Wolfpack 2019

The adventure game Codename: ICEMAN (1989) by Sierra On-line contained a submarine simulator portion.

The vehicle simulator game Naval Ops: Warship Gunner 2 (2006) by Koei features submarine hulls & puts the player through several submarine piloting missions, though several other missions are also restricted against submarine use.

AUV simulators

There are also a number of simulators available for underwater robots such as AUVs. These simulators are commonly used by research institutes for testing robot control and coordination algorithms before or during the development of a submarine. One of them is UWSim, the Underwater Simulator, which was developed in the IRSLab for marine robotics research and development. UWSim started with the RAUVI and TRIDENT research projects as a tool for testing and integrating perception and control algorithms before running them on the real robots and has continued its development until today.[1]


  1. ^ Prats, Mario; Perez, Javier; Fernandez, J. Javier; Sanz, Pedro J. (2012). "An open source tool for simulation and supervision of underwater intervention missions". 2012 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems. pp. 2577–2582. doi:10.1109/IROS.2012.6385788. ISBN 978-1-4673-1736-8. S2CID 14879440.