THQ Nordic and Digital Arrow are bringing back the AquaNox series in Aquanox: Deep Descent, a game that blends atmospheric undersea exploration with combat that's reminiscent of sci-fi space battles. We got to see the latest version of the game today at Gamescom, and it's shaping up nicely.

The game's set in 2370, in a post-apocalyptic future where mankind has moved undersea after ravaging the Earth's surface. Humans being human, old rivalries have reemerged in the new setting, and factions fight underwater for resources and power. You play as one of four crew members who has been brought back from suspended animation to help address a new threat: a new type of plankton that consumes anything manmade that it touches.  

Players can freely explore a variety of cave networks, open water, and the ocean floor for loot, though they need to be aware of enemy ships as well as natural threats like the plankton and huge mutated creatures. There are three different ship types to choose from, each of which has its own unique abilities (and fully detailed interior). Scouts are speedy and combat ships are great in battle, for example. They're all customizable, and players can craft new weapons and ammo from scavenging wreckage. Battles are fast and frantic, which may not be what you're expecting from a game set underwater. 

In the single-player campaign, all four characters are on the same ship. Up to four players can play cooperatively in drop-in, drop out matches, however. In that case each player gets his or her own ship. There are also competitive modes, as well as a special cooperative mode in which teams try to take on a massive capital-class ship.

Aquanox: Deep Descent is coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC the first half of 2018.