Fishing horror game Dredge from Christchurch lands 2024 DICE Award nomination

Christchurch indie game Dredge has been nominated for an award often called the gaming equivalent of an Oscar.

The fishing horror simulator from Black Salt Games, a studio of just four people, has been nominated in the 27th annual DICE Awards, the details of which were unveiled on Thursday morning.

Dredge, released in April 2023, has been nominated in the Outstanding Achievement for an Independent Game category.

A total of 56 games were nominated this year's awards, led by Marvel's Spider-Man 2 with nine nominations. Horror game Alan Wake 2 scored eight nods, RPG Baldur's Gate 3 got seven.

In a social media post on Thursday morning, the studio thanked its fans.

"DREDGE is nominated for Best Indie at DICE! Thank you so much - and congratulations to all the other nominees!"

The winners will be revealed on February 15 (US time) in a livestream from Las Vegas.

The nomination follows a stellar year for the game, which in November last year released its first playable DLC, called The Pale Reach.

The game's been highly rated on gaming platform Steam with over 22,500 reviews averaging a score of 10 out of 10.

Joel Mason, along with studio manager Nadia Thorne, lead artist Alex Ritchie and 3D animator Michael Bastiaens, left the safety of a large studio to begin their passion project.

In April 2023 shortly after its release, the team told Newshub they hadn't expected it to be a soaring success, with Dredge's story writer Joel Mason saying he thought it would be the opposite.

"I thought at this point I'd be calling up my mates and saying, 'Hey, I'll give you 40 bucks to go buy my game, and go tell people about it'. And I don't need to be doing that right now!"