The video game 'Subnautica' depicts an alien planet with many exotic underwater ecosystems. One of these is a 'lava zone' where molten lava stays in liquid form under the sea. Is this possible?

Matthew Brown Matthew Brown Apr 20, 2019 · 2 mins read
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The video game “Subnautica” has gained a cult following since its release in 2018, and for good reason. The game provides players with a unique opportunity to explore the depths of an alien planet’s oceans, encountering a range of bizarre and fascinating creatures along the way. One of the most intriguing areas of the game is the “lava zone,” an underwater ecosystem where molten lava flows beneath the sea.

But is this portrayal of a lava zone scientifically accurate? While it may seem like a fantastical creation of the game developers, the truth is that such a phenomenon could actually exist in the real world.

Lava zones are formed when volcanic activity occurs beneath the surface of the ocean. This can happen when magma rises up from deep within the Earth and comes into contact with the water. As the lava cools, it solidifies, forming new landmasses and creating a unique ecosystem of underwater creatures that are adapted to living in such harsh conditions.

In fact, there are several real-world examples of lava zones that have been documented by scientists. One such location is the East Pacific Rise, a mid-ocean ridge that runs along the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. Here, volcanic activity has created a series of underwater mountains and valleys known as the “Gorda Ridge,” which is home to a thriving community of exotic deep-sea creatures.

Similarly, the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii has been erupting periodically since 1983, continuously adding new land to the island and creating a lava zone that extends far into the ocean. While this area is uninhabitable for most species of marine life, there are some that have evolved to live in these conditions, such as the aptly named “lava crab.”

Of course, the lava zone depicted in “Subnautica” is likely an exaggerated portrayal of what might actually exist in nature. The game takes creative liberties to provide players with a compelling and visually stunning environment to explore. However, the fact remains that the underlying concept of an underwater lava zone is scientifically plausible.

In conclusion, the idea of a lava zone existing beneath the sea may seem like a far-fetched science fiction concept, but in reality, it is entirely possible. While the lava zone depicted in “Subnautica” may not be an exact representation of what might exist in nature, it is nevertheless a fascinating and imaginative interpretation of a beautifully strange and mysterious ecosystem.

Matthew Brown
Written by Matthew Brown
Living life to the fullest, one adventure at a time.