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Underworld Ascendant -- the "spiritual successor" to the Ultima Underworld games from ex-Looking Glass devs -- is a steaming pile of canine feces

Commissar SFLUFAN

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The game is from OtherSide Entertainment, a studio founded by ex-Looking Glass Studios members that is also developing System Shock 3.

Let's just say that based on this game, my usual statement that Prey 2K17 is all the System Shock 3 you'll ever need looks more accurate than ever.


PC Gamer - 25

There’s no way to sugarcoat this. Underworld Ascendant is phenomenally bad, a catastrophic mess of poor design ideas, woeful execution, and bugs the size of buildings. 


Gamespot - 2/10

But perhaps most crucially of all, I can't cope with the save system. To begin with, you cannot save wherever you like. You can save whenever you like, but loading this save will see you restart from the beginning of the level with your inventory intact but any changes to the level reset. You can, however, plant a tree sapling at certain points throughout a level to act as a respawn point if you die, similar to the Vita-Chambers in Bioshock. This would be okay if Underworld Ascendant was a run-based game where you're primarily interested in how far you can get and what loot drops. But it's not. It's a mission-based game where you're exploring a level for upwards of an hour each time, trying to complete a specific objective. You're already revisiting the same level over and over again by virtue of having to return to the hub to cash in a mission and pick up the next. Having to restart a level from the beginning each time you load a save is just adding insult to injury.


RPS - won't bother finishing its review because the game itself is unfinished

So what’s missing? Really fundamental things, like a working save game. At the moment the game lets you create respawn points using some dumb magic glowing tree thing in prescribed places, but should you quit and restart you’ll find progress wiped and you’re back at the very start of its expansive levels. Oh, and not all progress wiped! Because it ludicrously lets you keep your entire inventory, but resets all the puzzles and enemies. Having had to restart the opening section, I’ve now got an inventory with two of each of the unique items it hands you in its tutorial.



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Eurogamer joins in the pillorying with a review that acts as a reflection on the "immersive sim" genre

Perhaps the only "successful" immersive sim, then, is the one you can genuinely break. About an hour into my time with Underworld: Ascendant, I made a calculated hop onto a boulder and fell through into the very last level. I'd read that such a glitch existed, but I found the point of entry all by myself, and it's probably the most "meaningful" choice I've made in the Underworld. There I was with nothing but an Argos-brand wand and a bone club to my name, facing the Big Bad in a hellish cathedral surrounded by lavafalls. I couldn't complete the level without all seven keys, and struggled to make headway against its menagerie of spellcasters and spooks. But still - wasn't I, in fact, playing the game as its developers would like? Preying on the gaps in the stage machinery, osmosing through its facade? It wasn't much fun, either way, but in all my time with Ascendant, I have never felt more immersed.




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