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Breached VR

Breached VR

Robert Cooper
by redrob5 on 5 May 2021 for Rookie Awards 2021

An intense and atmospheric virtual reality experience. Taking place aboard a faithful digital recreation of HMS Alliance during The Cold War, the player fills the shoes of fictional USSR agent Anatoly Oblonsky as he boards an enemy vessel to carry out an espionage mission to extract nuclear plans.

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A British cold war submarine becomes damaged in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Helpless, it awaits rescue on the ocean surface. USSR operative Anatoly Oblonsky has been tasked with infiltrating the damaged vessel to steal sensitive nuclear intelligence before rescue arrives.

Breached aims to provide players with an immersive and authentic experience of the infiltration of an enemy submarine in the midst of the Cold War. Slip in and out undetected, or leave no survivors. One thing is for sure; we will achieve Soviet nuclear supremacy, Comrade...

Breached VR Trailer: 

Breached VR Gameplay Trailer:

The real HMS Alliance

Breached takes place aboard HMS Alliance, a Royal Navy submarine that served in both the Second World War, and the Cold War. The submarine has now been retired from service, and can be visited in Southampton, UK at the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. Unfortunately, I was unable to visit the submarine due to the current pandemic restricting public access to the Dockyard. Here are the references used for Breached and its imagining of HMS Alliance:

Breached's HMS Alliance

Breached Gameplay

In Breached VR, the player is tasked with infiltrating a British NATO submarine that has been stranded on the ocean surface after becoming damaged at sea. The player must bypass the guards on top of the submarine, and gain access to the Alliance. Once aboard, the player can experience the submarine as it was during the Cold War. Dispatch the enemies and search the HMS Alliance for the nuclear plans that could turn the tide of the Cold War. 

The player is armed with an authentic Cold War USSR pistol - a Pistolet Besshumnyj, otherwise known as a PB, or 6P9. He must stay quiet and sneak around the vessel to avoid detection by the men conversing in their bunks; fast movement means louder steps and more likely detection. 

Elements of the gameplay are randomised, such as guard positions on the outside of the submarine, and locations of items such as keys, locked drawers, and the paper on which the officer has jotted down the safe code. On top of this, the safe code is also randomised at the start of each level - Meaning each play-through will be slightly different. See these randomised elements below: 

See below: keep quiet in the mess deck corridor to avoid detection by the men in their bunks!

Creative changes to the layout of HMS Alliance

Although great care and attention has been taken in re-creating HMS alliance, some things had to be changed in the name of gameplay flow, scope, and optimisation. 

For example, the "officer's quarters" is actually located near the centre of the submarine. In Breached, the officer's quarters exist in place of an extra bunk room (similar to the corridor in real-life). The room itself is however a faithful reconstruction of the existing Communications Room, on board the Alliance - with some changes made to establish the room as an Officer's quarters, rather than a radio room.  

The lighting was also made moodier as the killing of the officer and what follows during the gameplay is quite atmospheric and dark. The environment should reflect this tone. 


Being the only developer on the project, I also created all of the assets for the submarine. Here are some assets, breakdowns, and background information.

A more in-depth look at some assets and the research / techniques behind them: 


All game design, art, sound, and media... etc: Robert Cooper

British Soldiers voice acting: George Exley 

Russian Agent voice acting: Alexandr Jes Mingalev

Trailer Music: Trouble Is Brewing - Fesliyan Studios

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