Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 55 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 55
  2. Negative: 8 out of 55
  1. Apr 13, 2011
    80
    Overall, I enjoyed my undersea voyage quite a bit; it may have been short, but it was also very sweet. [April 2011, p.88]
  2. May 6, 2011
    76
    In the end and as mention, Steel Diver is a game you'll either love or hate. As opposed to running out and purchasing it, you might want to test it out first unless you're a fan of simulators and then I would recommend that you run out and buy this title. It's great that Nintendo are supporting other genres than their core games and hopefully Steel Diver will lead to other ventures into uncharted waters as opposed to arcade endeavours. For me, Steel Diver was an addictive experience and was just what I needed in all these 3DS remakes!
  3. May 18, 2011
    75
    It's a unique experience, even if it doesn't last long (a few hours, tops), and it does develop some challenge - especially when you start competing on times and try to fill in your decal collection.
  4. Apr 21, 2011
    75
    Steel Diver is that typical game that is not for everyone. As a launch title, considering the fact that the handheld is poor of great games, maybe It's worth it the play. But do not get too excited, there's nothing so revolutionary that truly justify the purchase.
  5. May 12, 2011
    71
    Steel Diver is an intriguing game, a real submarine simulator for both hardcore and casual gamers thanks to a good learning curve. The controls are really deep and can be really rewarding. There's also a lot of potential in the gyroscope minigame, but at the end of the day you can complete the game in a few hours.
  6. May 5, 2011
    71
    Steel Diver is an interesting game, but it's short and lack of depth.
  7. Jun 20, 2011
    70
    It seems safe to say that Steel Diver will not reach the level of popularity among Nintendo's most beloved franchises, but Miyamoto and company still deserve kudos for inventing another unique gameplay experience that is seldom seen elsewhere. While the learning curve can be steep, enough patience will lead to a satisfying package that's two games in one and easily bears replaying.
  8. Jun 3, 2011
    70
    The challenge/reward loop will simply not click for many, with the touch-screen controls being little more than a clunky irritant attached to a slow-paced and slightly directionless game.
  9. May 24, 2011
    70
    Steeldiver is a novel and varied title that should entertain the casual gamer.
  10. May 8, 2011
    70
    Unfortunately, though, as impressive as the in-game content may be, everything ends far too quickly, even with the extra missions to unlock, and means that the RRP of £39.99 is too steep.
  11. May 5, 2011
    70
    While it lasts, it's a brilliantly designed, original and fun experience. It just needs to last a lot longer.
  12. Apr 23, 2011
    70
    It's good while it lasts. [Apr 2011, p.48]
  13. 70
    The mechanics, while a little obtuse, are interesting, and the three different game modes are varied and fun. It's just that there is a large focus on replaying the same content with minor differences.
  14. Apr 3, 2011
    70
    If there is any fault here, it is that the Mission Mode is shorter then one would hope for, and the visuals don't take enough advantage of the 3D capabilities.
  15. Mar 23, 2011
    70
    Additional online modes would have put this title right at the top of my recommendation list but despite its lack of depth (get it?), Steel Diver remains an interesting title to experience, if none of the other launch titles manages to grab your attention.
  16. Mar 21, 2011
    70
    Truth be told, its an extremely challenging side-scrolling ... well, it's part shoot-'em-up, part submarine simulator and part strategy game. The sum of these parts is actually a lot more compelling than the game taken at face value.
  17. Mar 19, 2011
    70
    Well executed, but lacking in depth (which is ironic for a multitude of reasons). However, once you give it a fair shot, you'll be surprised how addictive the gameplay is and how much fun you'll have trying to master the controls and conquer each mission.
  18. May 30, 2011
    68
    Steel Diver is an average game for Nintendo 3DS. It's fun for a while, but too short and poor in contents.
  19. May 17, 2011
    65
    Steel Diver offers three different types of mini games. Each mini game is ok, but not more. The combination of all three modes would have been interesting, but there is no possibility to mix them up. The strategy multiplayer game is lame and not entertaining, while the periscope game is pretty funny in the beginning, but it is, like the campaign, too short.
  20. May 11, 2011
    65
    Unique and engaging foundations wrapped in a package that fails to capitalise on the potential. If content is king, then this is a pawn.
  21. Mar 27, 2011
    62
    There isn't much to explore in Steel Diver's shallow waters. There are better ways to showcases the new hardware, even among the 3DS's sparse launch lineup. Only the most dogged would-be Nemo need apply.
  22. Once you've run out of game in Steel Diver, it simply sinks without a trace. [May 2011, p.98]
  23. 60
    Some good ideas and stunning graphics with nice 3D effects rise this underwater arcade slightly above average. [June 2011]
  24. Jun 4, 2011
    60
    True, it could have been tedious, but there's still not enough for us to want to take the plunge. [July 2011, p.88]
  25. 60
    It's a recommendable experience to anyone looking for something new, it's up to players to decide whether the price justifies the opportunity.
  26. May 16, 2011
    60
    A decent game, with variety of modes, but not that well put together. It offers some challenge in the submarine mode, but not enough content to be replayable.
  27. May 15, 2011
    60
    Steel Diver has an original concept but the game itself isn't really that good. There aren't enough missions to play and the gameplay is difficult to handle. Therefore it's not something you should buy immediately.
  28. May 6, 2011
    60
    It is, at least, pretty original, and getting to grips with your submarines' controls is both fun and satisfying. We would, though, have preferred to see it priced more realistically to reflect its brevity. It's true that it simply wouldn't work on any console other than the 3DS, but it's by no means an essential purchase.
  29. May 3, 2011
    60
    Steel Diver provides exciting, tactical underwater action, but a steep difficulty curve and lack of content make it difficult to recommend.
  30. May 3, 2011
    60
    Travel in a submarine is never a short trip. Steel Diver really is short, and although try to extend the fun, this does not appear as we thought. Miyamoto should scold his developers and search the great game that we expected.
  31. May 2, 2011
    60
    In spite of its steep learning curve, dearth of content, and lack of depth (both figuratively and literally), Steel Diver grew on me. It may have less to do with being a submarine commander than Trauma Center does with being a doctor, but it's a novel premise nonetheless, and the tactile fidgeting with the sub's controls is strangely rewarding.
  32. Apr 5, 2011
    60
    Pick it up because you want to spin yourself around the living room hunting for ships, or can deal with the submarine style controls. Accept the game for what it is, and you'll enjoy what it has to offer.
  33. Mar 31, 2011
    60
    Steel Diver is easily one of the more creative titles in the initial 3DS lineup and offers a nice glimpse of the type of innovative gaming experiences the system has to offer.
  34. Mar 29, 2011
    60
    I'm still in awe of the graphics, and the game's strategic depth eventually grew on me, but unless you're the kind of person who can afford to buy every launch title the 3DS has to offer, I don't think Steel Diver should be your first pick.
  35. Mar 24, 2011
    60
    There's just not enough to do, at least not for the price. We appreciate that Nintendo did something different here, and a system's launch is a great time to be more experimental, but if we're going to pay $39.99 for a new 3DS game, we're going to need more than this.
  36. Apr 12, 2011
    58
    The learning curve in Mission mode is quite steep, and many will undoubtedly be put off by the slow pace at which each stage unfolds.
  37. Mar 24, 2011
    58
    The core "side-scrolling submarine action game with a bit of realistic physics" campaign is either way too short or frustratingly padded.
  38. May 2, 2011
    52
    Steel Diver is a launch title that shows off some of the great features of the 3DS (gyroscope sensor and 3D) but leaves some of them out as well (including StreetPass, online play, and Play Coins). If I were looking to buy the game, I would have loved to have purchased this for around $15 from the 3DS online shop. However, at the current price of $39.99, this game has too few overall content to warrant a purchase at the price of a full-length game. If you're itching to check this game out, I would wait until it drops in price.
  39. Jul 7, 2011
    50
    Simple arcade game with relatively addicting gameplay which suffers from a severe lack of content. In this case it's quite a fundamental problem.
  40. May 19, 2011
    50
    Steel Divers are submarines that are just as hard to handle as their real-life counterparts. And real submarines also have periscopes. There ends the resemblance with reality, though. Steel Diver is a slow shmup in disguise that on top of it all offers very little content to the buyer – and should have remained the downloadable DSi-title it originally was meant to be.
  41. May 17, 2011
    50
    Too short with boring game modes. This should have stayed a demo.
  42. May 16, 2011
    50
    An enjoyable, nicely crafted and beautiful game that does justice to the unique characteristics of the 3DS. However, we cannot recommend a full priced game that lasts only a couple of hours.
  43. May 8, 2011
    50
    It's essentially the slowest side-scrolling shoot 'em up you'll ever play, demanding you laboriously guide a submarine to the end of each level while avoiding damage and destroying evil submarines whose perfidy knows no bounds and warrants no backstory. [June 2011, p.97]
  44. May 6, 2011
    50
    Quotation forthcoming.
  45. May 6, 2011
    50
    Steel Diver is a disappointing game, mixing an arcade nature with over-complicated controls. The result is a short and flat experience, maybe good for a two-days rental.
  46. Mar 31, 2011
    50
    In short, Steel Diver is an extremely underwhelming launch game. The eight missions can be knocked out in about 2 to 3 hours and the two player Steel Commander mode is buggy in addition to boring when playing against the AI. It doesn't make any sense to me why Nintendo would sell this at a $39.99 MSRP.
  47. Mar 30, 2011
    50
    Weirdly contradictory design and somewhat awkward controls make Steel Diver undecided on whether it's an action game or simulation. The result is that it's neither.
  48. Mar 25, 2011
    45
    This tedious underwater adventure is as short on content as it is on thrills.
  49. May 12, 2011
    40
    After the first gimmicky 3D visual effect wears off, you end up with a rushed out game which feels more like a tech demo than a real game that lives up to what you can expect from a 3DS. The story mode has too few missions, and shows in and of itself the overall lack of content and ambition of the game. And, neither the Battleship nor the Periscope modes can make up for it. The periscope sequences are the only element trying to make use of the gyroscope function of the console, but it turns out to be rather inefficient handling. All in all, we end up with a game that could have been released in the early DS days, certainly to a more impactful reception, at times where the stylus was still considered an innovation.
  50. May 9, 2011
    40
    Incredibly, this is an in-house attempt and a £40 launch window title. If Steel Diver is an example of how the Big N is planning to treat first-party 3DS games in the months to come, the future is bleak indeed.
  51. Mar 25, 2011
    40
    Maybe some gamers will be pulled into the aquatic world of Steel Diver despite the limited content, tech demo quality, and seemingly broken multiplayer. For the majority of Nintendo fans, though, it's destined to become a strange and forgotten footnote in the publisher's history.
  52. May 27, 2011
    37
    Steel Diver fails to offer a lasting and enjoyable experience.
  53. 30
    You can see everything Steel Diver has to offer within the first hour, and it never seems to find its footing in regards to either gameplay or design choices. If the horrible sound doesn't scare you off, the confusing controls probably will.
  54. 30
    For a brand new Nintendo franchise this is short not just on content, but also compelling gameplay and a sense of fun.
  55. Apr 21, 2011
    25
    Steel Diver is a very odd choice as a launch game. It's a new IP, which is great, but it doesn't exactly scream mass appeal. The 3D is used effectively, making it look like you're peering into a fish tank, complete with beautifully done dynamic backgrounds, but you can also turn it off and not have the experience change much at all. Mostly though, the biggest problem is that it's short, dull and entirely too easy. While any one of those would cause the game to spring a leak, all three sinks it right to the bottom.
User Score
6.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 23 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 10
  2. Negative: 2 out of 10
  1. Dec 5, 2011
    4
    This was my first 3DS game and i havent polayed it in a long time because there are so many awesome titles that just beat the crap out of it. There are fun modes like sinking the battleships but are only fun for about 15 minutes. The controls are awful and it is very difficult to manuver your submarine in story mode and you occasionally hit into obstacles and enemies and blow up. The missiles are hard to shoot at enemies in story mode and usually cost you health just trying to aim and fire at ships at the surface of the water. The graphics and 3D are average and the water affects are good when you are splashed, but nothing worth "WOWing!" Overall, this game should be avoided to most 3DS owners and eager children should have their parents wait until the price drops to at least to $20 or lower, which is unlikely. Full Review »
  2. Oct 1, 2011
    10
    This is great. Really fun and a joy to play something new and wonderful and exiting like this. Superb tight controls makes this a winnner and with a full campaign, time trials , periscope strike challenges and steel commander a strategy game, this has really a lot to offer. I have allready spend about 4 hours with this game and i'm not half through yet. Thanks to Nintendo for trying something new and shame shame shame on all those crazy people giving this game a bad review. They are really NOT gamers.. All love goes to Steel Diver. â Full Review »
  3. Jun 25, 2011
    6
    There's so much potential in this game yet the difficulty of controls make this a bit forgettable. It's my least played game in my collection so far.