About Underworld Ascendant
Underworld Ascendant for PC is a classic cRPG played from the first-person view. The game is the spiritual successor to one of the most important RPG series in the history of gaming, that is, Ultima Underworld. Underworld Ascendant was created by Otherside Entertainment – a studio led by Paul Neurath, who co-created Ultima; later on, he was the head of the Looking Glass studio, which is popular for such classics as System Shock or Thief. The game received support through a successful crowd-funding campaign on Kickstarter.
Underworld Ascendant is set in the Stygian Abyss, which is an underground area the fans of Ultima are definitely familiar with. The realm is inhabited by three intelligent races: Dwarves, Dark Elves, and Shamblers that resemble humanoid mushrooms. These factions are fiercely fighting for power over this underground land. Having chosen one of the three basic classes (Warrior, Mage, Thief), the player picks one side of the conflict in order to experience an epic adventure in the land filled with underground towns, mazes, ancient temples, huge systems of caverns, and dense forests.
As in any other classic cRPG, numerous skills are assigned to the chosen class, and the player develops those skills as the character gains experience. Interestingly, the skills can be mixed together in order to create a unique character that matches one’s play-style. The game is played from the first-person view, which also applies to real-time combat where, apart from the character’s individual skills, the crucial factors are their mobility, reflexes, and the ability to take advantage of the shape of terrain. When fighting, the player uses traditional weapons, as well as a wide variety of spells; though this does not apply to all of them, what combat skills are available depends also on which of the factions the player has made an alliance with during their adventure.
In Underworld Ascendant for PC, the events are presented in a dynamic way and what happens changes depending on the player’s actions. For instance, helping one faction affects the balance of powers in the undergrounds, which has geographic consequences and affects what threats may the player encounter on their path. What is distinctive about the game, the player was given a large portion of freedom, and so they can complete particular assignments in many different ways limited only by their creativity and what they have in their inventory. Thanks to the special Improvisation Engine used, the player can take advantage of the environment, as well as both NPCs and creatures. To illustrate, fire melts blocks of ice, one can electrocute enemies standing in water, or cast a spell on a huge spider in order to get teleported to the other bank of a wild river.