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In Silent Hunter III players take command of a German U-Boat (submarine), operating in the Atlantic Ocean during World War II. The player will lead a captain’s career that begins in a year of their choice, from 1939 to 1944, assigned to the flotilla of their choice, which influences the player's initial base and submarine type. After these choices, the dynamic campaign takes over, and time progresses at a steady pace, while the player and the AI wage war against Britain and its allies both on the sea and under it.

There are four main types of U-Boat (II, VII, IX, and XXI) along with several variants of each sub. Along with the different sub types, there are different armaments that are able to be mounted on/in the submarine, such as the deck gun and the flak cannon, as well as differing types of torpedoes, hydrophones, engines, batteries, etc. Depending on what stage of the war they're in, players will have access to different levels of technology and submarine augmentations. Successes at sea will also determine the upgrades that players can make.

Players can award their crew with medals and promotions, each of whom carry over and improve from mission to mission, provided that they survive (and that the submarine itself returns from its patrol). Sailors can specialize in certain elements of the submarine, and while they are working in those areas (e.g. torpedo rooms, engine rooms, etc), the performance of that part of the submarine will be supplemented by their skill. The crew will tire over the course of each 1-2 week patrol, and careful management is sometimes required so that manpower isn't lacking when the pressure is on. Death can come from aircraft in the sky, destroyers on the sea, or even the sea itself.

Simply put, this game is a WW2 naval submarine simulator, supplemented with pixel shading graphics technology in an attempt to provide a more realistic ocean and game world. The simulation’s damage model is intricate, and depending on where players land their torpedoes and deck cannon fire (and what part of the ship that's target), they will be met with varying results, ranging from light flooding of the ship to completely splitting the ship in two. The plague of dud torpedoes is modeled as well, so even if a hit is scored, it might simply be met with a loud ‘clang’.

As with most modern simulators, Silent Hunter III allows the player to enable or disable certain options that make parts of the game either easier or harder. These options range from the visual stability of the periscope in high seas, easier targeting, what cameras can be used (including forced first-person), even whether the submarine has an infinite amount of diesel fuel. Because of this ability to tweak the realism, more casual players need not be chased off by the heavy simulation elements.


Silent Hunter III Windows The crew looks a bit scared as the depth-charges explode, luckily not too near this time.
Silent Hunter III Windows The German cruiser Prinz Eugen
Silent Hunter III Windows Enemy ship destroyed
Silent Hunter III Windows A rear view of a British destroyer laying mines.

Promo Images

Silent Hunter III Screenshot
Silent Hunter III Screenshot
Silent Hunter III Wallpaper
Silent Hunter III Screenshot


Alternate Titles

  • "獵殺潛航 3" -- Traditional Chinese spelling
  • "猎杀潜航III" -- Simplified Chinese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

A Good Simulator... With a Grab-bag of Bad Thrown In Professor (107) 3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars

Critic Reviews

GameSpy Apr 08, 2005 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
1UP Jun 27, 2005 10 out of 10 100
FileFactory Games / Gameworld Network Apr 05, 2005 94 out of 100 94
FiringSquad Apr 06, 2005 91 out of 100 91
Game Chronicles Apr 10, 2005 9 out of 10 90
GameSpot Mar 29, 2005 8.9 out of 10 89
GameStar (Germany) Apr, 2005 88 out of 100 88
GameZone Mar 28, 2005 8.6 out of 10 86
PC Games (Germany) Apr 18, 2005 76 out of 100 76
Pro-G Jun 07, 2005 7 out of 10 70


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1001 Video Games

Silent Hunter III appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


The development team enlisted the aid of Jürgen Oesten (born 1913), a WW2 U-Boat Ace, to give the simulation that extra bit of authenticity. Segments of the interview with Oesten were made available to the public on the Silent Hunter III website to generate enthusiasm for the game, leading up to its release in March.

European version

In the European version, all swastikas were removed.


Silent Hunter III was one of the first Ubisoft titles to use the controversial StarForce 3 protection. Users who use virtual drives like Daemon Tools or burning software like Nero would encounter problems running the game.

Torpedoschule Murwik

In the tutorial the player learns some lessons at the Torpedoschule Murwik. This place really existed. On the same naval base existed from 1888 the Naval Academy of the Kaiser. Since this time every officer of the German navy is educated at this place. Today the complex is called Marineschule Mürwik. Since 1957 the officers of the German navy have been qualified at this place. More information can be found on Wikipedia.


  • Computer Games Magazine
    • March 2006 - #3 PC Game of the Year 2005
  • GameSpy
    • 2005 – #10 PC Game of the Year
    • 2005 – PC Simulation of the Year
Information also contributed by JimmyA, Karthik KANE and PCGamer77.

Related Web Sites

Bet (569) added Silent Hunter III (Windows) on Mar 27, 2005
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