Ultima Underworld Successor Heading to Kickstarter Next Month

Ultima Underworld Successor Heading to Kickstarter Next Month

Game designer Paul Neuarth has opened a new studio and announced an upcoming Kickstarter aimed at creating a spiritual successor to Ultima Underworld.

Easily one of the great classics of the RPG genre, Ultima Underworld is considered by many to be the original first-person action RPG. Pretty much any game you can think of that includes real-time combat and a first-person perspective probably owes at least something to Blue Sky Productions' (later Looking Glass Studios) 1992 romp through the Stygian Abyss. Despite its big legacy however, the Underworld series itself was relatively short-lived. The first game received only one sequel before the franchise fizzled out and faded away. If Paul Neuarth and his studio OtherSide Entertainment have their way however, Underworld may soon live on through a new spiritual successor.

Said successor will be called Underworld Ascendant and, according to an announcement from OtherSide today, will make its way to Kicktarter next month starting on February 4th. While he's yet to release any details about funding goals, Neuarth stressed that making "a great game" requires "resources and effort." He would go on to say that he intends to craft a finished product that "retains the distinctive fantasy gameplay of the originals" while also "[pushing] forward with new innovations." A working prototype of Ascendant is apparently already running on PCs.

Neuarth, of course, was the designer behind the original Ultima Underworld and a co-founder of Looking Glass Studios. That background in mind, he described Underworld Ascendant as the culmination of a personal quest to revive the Ultima Underworld franchise. "Over the years I've tried without success to raise the Underworld series back up," he said. "Just now have the stars aligned so this can happen. I started OtherSide Entertainment [as] an indie studio to rekindle this classic." Suffice it to say we'll be watching Kickstarter closely come February 4th to see exactly what Neuarth and OtherSide have planned.

Source: GameSpot

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I think Yahtzee might be right about Kickstarter.

When he's done with this could he have a go at remastering System Shock? Pretty please?

hopefully they are successful, this year seems to eb treating kickstarter projects better than the last

Does it seem paranoid that my first thought on reading this one is "Oh wow I can kickstart the legal defense against EA's C&D notice!". I mean as much as I want a true "spiritual" successor to Ultima Underworld I always thought that a large part of the issue in getting more was a somewhat convoluted IP ownership, that may or may not quietly rank up there with Fallout? Or am I reading too much into things?

I also must confess that I will never ever Kickstart an unfinished game. I see Kickstarter as a wonderful mechanism for bringing your solid ready for presentation designs to production. It works well to raise capital to get your product made. Not so much as a research and development grant to design said product from the ground up. You want to make Munchkin add ons for Lego minifigures and you have some clean and presentable prototype masters and a clear plan for production? sure sign me up. Your project has clear deliverable. You want to produce a bound volume of the last 5 years of your web comic? By all means let me help. You have already generated the work product and just need help converting that to a physical one.

But you want to start a multi year development on a virtual product that requires at a minimum a complex assortment of skilled people, possibly millions of dollars of development and software licensing costs, and at current industry rates requires the national budget of a South American Nation? Oh HECK NO! There is not even the slightest whiff of actual deliverables beyond "like that thing you fondly remember... but better!"

Out of all of them... Underworld? Not quest of the Avatar or one of the games like that?
Little interest due to my dislike sorry.

High interest in this. I was recently lamenting the lack of a story focused delver RPG. Legend of Grimrock is more of a Wizardry remake but there hasn't been anything that embraced what was essentially the "survival" aspect of Underworld.

No random levels, conversation and reputation with the inhabitants, trade and faction warfare. Looking forward and will be kickstarting.

I want this. I want this so badly.

faefrost:
Does it seem paranoid that my first thought on reading this one is "Oh wow I can kickstart the legal defense against EA's C&D notice!". I mean as much as I want a true "spiritual" successor to Ultima Underworld I always thought that a large part of the issue in getting more was a somewhat convoluted IP ownership, that may or may not quietly rank up there with Fallout? Or am I reading too much into things?

I also must confess that I will never ever Kickstart an unfinished game. I see Kickstarter as a wonderful mechanism for bringing your solid ready for presentation designs to production. It works well to raise capital to get your product made. Not so much as a research and development grant to design said product from the ground up. You want to make Munchkin add ons for Lego minifigures and you have some clean and presentable prototype masters and a clear plan for production? sure sign me up. Your project has clear deliverable. You want to produce a bound volume of the last 5 years of your web comic? By all means let me help. You have already generated the work product and just need help converting that to a physical one.

But you want to start a multi year development on a virtual product that requires at a minimum a complex assortment of skilled people, possibly millions of dollars of development and software licensing costs, and at current industry rates requires the national budget of a South American Nation? Oh HECK NO! There is not even the slightest whiff of actual deliverables beyond "like that thing you fondly remember... but better!"

I agree with you 100%. The only thing that came to mind after reading is "oh look, another cash in on a nostalgic IP." Could be wrong but that's my opinion.

It better have the ability to put notes on the map...

 

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