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Developer says submarine horror game’s sales spike “feels so wrong”

Indie horror game Iron Lung sees a sales spike during Titanic sub search effort, but its developer says the surge "feels so wrong."

A grainy screen showing an animal's bones, from its head to its body

Iron Lung took the horror game community by storm after its launch, prompting well-known content creators to stream their experience. In Iron Lung, you play as the pilot of a small submarine traversing through an ocean of blood on an alien moon. Following its initial fame, the game had a pretty steady number of sales, though with the Titanic submarine recovery effort in the news, Iron Lung has once again spiked in popularity, and developer David Szymanski has taken to Twitter to discuss it.

Titan is a Cyclops-class manned submersible, according to OceanGate, designed to take five people to depths of 4,000 meters for site survey and inspection of the Titanic wreckage. The sub lost contact with its support ship less than two hours after first entering the water on Sunday, June 18. Since then, various rescue missions have set off in hopes of finding the passengers. Unfortunately, neither Titan nor its crew has yet been found.

As the submersible’s situation has been trending on social media, interest in Iron Lung has spiked due to its subject matter. The game involves piloting a claustrophobic submarine through a creepy extraterrestrial sea. Szymanski, the lead and sole developer of Iron Lung, responded to the game’s spike in sales by sharing a screenshot of a chart depicting the figures. He simply wrote, “This feels so wrong,” likely referring to the timing between the rise in sales and Titan’s real-world situation.

Tweet by David Szymanski showing the Iron Lung sales spiking recently

He followed up the initial chart post with more thoughts, stating that he “made Iron Lung the most nightmarish thing I could think of, and knowing real people are in that situation right now is pretty horrific.” While Szymanski did say the situation was the result of “their own bad decisions,” the developer also tweeted that despite all of the trending jokes, “nobody should have to die like that.”

A Tweet from David Szymanski

Currently sitting on Steam at just $5.99 / £4.79, Iron Lung continues to trend as the rescue effort continues.