The single-player story begins with an introduction from Mr. X. He tells the passengers of his wish and warns that those too weak to play his "game" may be of use to the sharks, but not for him. The player assumes the role of Charlie Panther, second class passenger. However, Panther meets Jimmy the Bellboy. Jimmy explains that "Mr. X don't like no loose ends" and that he is planning on destroying the boat after the hunt is over—along with whoever wins. Jimmy then offers to get Charlie off the boat for $100,000.
After Panther has paid Jimmy and is leaving the cruise ship inside a small boat, Mr. X's helicopter is seen flying away before a massive explosion tears through the ship, separating it in two, and causing it to sink. Panther blacks out and regains consciousness in a hospital lying on a bed with a nurse treating him. Over loudspeakers, Mr. X can be heard adressing the people inside the hospital, implying that one of his games is about to start at the hospital, with Panther once again one of X's pawns.