Back in the pre-Doom world of 1992, Ultima Underworld was a revelation – coming before Wolfenstein 3D it offered 3D immersion, player-based choice and consequences, and a richly detailed and dynamic world to explore. The game was hugely influential and led to games such as Thief and Deus Ex. Now the adventure continues with Underworld Ascendant from the original creators.
Underworld Ascendant is now active on Kickstarter, with a goal of $600,000 and a projected delivery of November 2016. Big on my hopeful stretch goals is the $750,000 level for Mac and Linux versions. The developers don’t have the rights to use the ‘Ultima’ name, but can use all other ideas related to the property, so it is bound to be a solid and truly inspired sequel.
One of the biggest attractions is the Improvisation Engine:
Do you enjoy the freedom of choice in sandbox games like Deus Ex or Elder Scrolls? The team at OtherSide in large part invented this style of experience with the original Ultima Underworld — now they intend to take it to the next level.
At the heart of Underworld Ascendant’s distinctive gameplay is the Improvisation Engine, which gives you an array of tools to think up your own ingenious solutions to challenges.
Underworld Ascendant’s Improvisation Engine encourages you to experiment and unlock your creative potential. Devise clever techniques that even the game’s designers haven’t imagined yet!
Underworld has been hidden away in the deepest vaults of its publisher for two decades. Only now have the original creators unchained the franchise, freeing it to innovate yet again. Backing the game grants you unprecedented front row access to the creation of the next epoch of this storied masterpiece, Underworld Ascendant. With your help, here’s a glimpse at what we can together build:
- Exquisitely Realized Underworld – Plunge into The Stygian Abyss: dark, ripe with dangers, full of ancient secrets to discover. A vast subterranean fantasy world made startlingly real and alive.
- Dynamic Factions – Become embroiled in an epic plot, as rival factions vie for dominance in struggles that ebb and flow across The Stygian Abyss. Your choices will alter the outcome in subtle and dramatic ways.
- Improvisation Engine – Delight in player-authored gameplay taken to a whole new level, with a suite of technologies that empower you to solve challenges with astonishing ingenuity. Be the ‘MacGyver’ of a fantasy world.
- Hero to Call Your Own – Jump right in as a Fighter, Thief or Mage. Then as your Avatar grows, freely mix and match across any skills to develop a unique hero, tailored to your style of play.
- Pushing Boundaries – Stretch Goals will innovate on co-op play with a friend; letting you build your own corner of The Stygian Abyss; and more.
Check out the trailer: