Of all the RPG sagas that exist, one of the most classic and that has more than 20 years behind them is Ultima Underworld. The OtherSide Entertainment team has a special love for this series and the members of this small studio have wanted to bring it back with a new release that will be Underworld Ascendant, whose launch is practically around the corner.
Before that time, we have had the opportunity to test an advance of this game thanks to an event that has made 505 Games, responsible for its distribution, and with which we have discovered what are the benefits and the most important features of this role title with so much flavor to classic.
Behind this project are names like Warren Spector and there are also veterans of BioShock Infinite, Dungeon & Dragons Online or even the previous Ultima Underworld, which makes it clear that the team is made up of talented people with a special love for the development of this game. Having said that, we will detail if it has met expectations.
Advancing through the dungeons our way
Personally I have to confess that video games that offer me the possibility of solving situations as I want and without forcing myself to execute a series of fixed steps, the first ones already manage to get my attention. Precisely this is the case of Underworld Ascendant, in which from the first moment the game itself warns us what is the mission we will have, but there will not be a single way to achieve it.
For example, at the time of escaping from the place where we were, we had before us a blocked door. The normal thing before these cases is to look for a key that could open it, but it is also possible to break it with punches while our hands go bloody, try to burn the wood with a torch or locate a switch that is causing it to remain closed. There is no single way to deal with any situation and that is where research and imagination come into play.
The same will happen with the dangerous enemies, having to think what is the best way to face them or maybe the best option is to put feet in dust to avoid or extinguish the torches that we have around us to camouflage us and thus go unnoticed. The scenario will always be full of ideas that will allow us to think and act quickly, even interacting with virtually any object that we have around us.
In this sense we have tried to give a real weight to the elements that we find. This will prevent us from taking anything and moving freely, which we can do with a jug, for example, although not with a heavy box and that we may need to place on top of a switch or to form a mountain with them. This factor must also be taken into account when throwing objects, since the largest can only be left on the ground, while the lightest ones that we can throw where we want and thus hit levers placed in places inaccessible.
On the other hand, during our game we managed to take possession of some weapons, some more powerful than others, as well as a bow with limited arrows or a magic wand that was spent if we used it too much. At the same time we saw in the menu that there are many magics and skills to unlock and with which we would have loved to experiment to see what more options we have thanks to them. However, it gives the impression that the personalization of our character will be quite profound.
Facing the problems
We have already seen that the mechanics and ideas of Underworld Ascendant are really promising and look good, but what happens with everything else? While it is true that the setting is achieved to perfection and plunges us into dungeons with a dark, dark and that leave us with a sense that the dangers lurking around any corner, technically leaves a bit to be desired.
We understand that when dealing with a demo there may be errors or some bugs that need to be solved, although with the launch so close … we must admit that we have spoiled the experience too much. We have found loading screens that left the game frozen and forced us to restart the game from the beginning or performance problems in general.
We have also encountered a failure that took us directly from the stage and it was impossible for us to return to where we were and mechanics that did not finish working correctly, even the combats would not be bad if they were polished even more. Even so, we must emphasize that what we have played was not the final version and we trust that all this will be solved by then.
In short, because of these problems we are left wanting more, because perhaps other games you prefer to leave them aside, but Underworld Ascendant manages to get hooked in order to move forward and try new methods to advance through the places you had previously explored. To this we must add the fact that it is not easy at all, but it is challenging and we will have to determine well our decisions and movements if we want to stay alive.
On November 15 it will be when we will leave doubts and see if truly Underworld Ascendant meets the expectations generated us your demo or failures get overcome ideas which, though not become too revolutionary, we ensure entertaining moments and adventure very promising fantasy that we will travel as we want.