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Underworld Ascendant Update #37: Pre-Alpha Build releasing on August 10th

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Underworld Ascendant Update #37: Pre-Alpha Build releasing on August 10th

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Fri 4 August 2017, 00:31:10

Tags: Joe Fielder; OtherSide Entertainment; Underworld Ascendant

After months of waiting and numerous delays, the extremely busy gentlemen at OtherSide Entertainment have finally announced a release date for the Underworld Ascendant vertical slice/pre-alpha. On August 10th, backers who pledged at the $75 Adventurer tier or above will be receiving their Steam keys. The new development update has some concrete information about what's in store for them, including a few screenshots.

As you know, we recently stood up the core tenets of combat, stealth, and magic in an early area of the game called The Challenge of Ishtass. There, the player is first introduced to the array of choices available to them with The Improvisation Engine. We set the challenge, the solution is up to you, and we reward creativity.

[...] To explain, first let’s take a look at a few recent additions to the game world…

In this shot, you can see physics-based traps that the player can manipulate, the sticky bulb of the “glue plant,” and spreading fire.

The player might use a glue bulb and a crate to jam a trap, pass by unharmed, then use water to dissolve the glue, just as an enemy steps into the trap’s path.

Or they might cast a the Gravitate spell — a non-offensive magic originally designed as a way of creating bridges — on a pile of crates, setting them on fire, then to hold off encroaching enemies. Or, even better, lining them up just right and blasting them at enemies with a Repulse spell in a fiery rain.

It’s important to note that none of these results were planned in advance, they were discovered.

Whenever a new interactable element gets added to the game, all of us on the development team spend a few days playing around with it in conjunction with different skills, spells, and AI. Sometimes, we find bugs or areas where support is needed, but often, things just… work.

One of the most exciting aspects of external testing for us is seeing the inventive solutions that players come up with. We said back at the start that we want you to devise clever techniques that we haven’t imagined yet and every time we do a round of testing, we see a few things that we’ve never seen before.

For instance, one tester recently tossed a glue ball at the base of a whirring tick-tock trap rightalong the seam and stopped it dead in its tracks. We didn’t know that was possible, but of course, knowing how the systems work, it makes sense.

Another tester used the Gravitate spell to place and lock a crate right in front of the tick-tock trap’s whirring blades. It strained and strained against it, until the spell wore off and the crate was launched far into the air. (When it landed, it alerted a Lizard Man. Oops.)

We’re constantly reminded of when we first released the initial prototype of Underworld Ascendant to backers and within half an hour started seeing videos of spell and object uses we’d never imagined. (Like using a spell that lifts plants to create a magical elevator.) So, we’re really looking forward to seeing the inventive solutions you all come up with.

Now that the build has undergone a few rounds of external feedback, bug testing, and polish, we’re just about ready.

In fact, we’re close enough that we can finally reveal the release date of the Pre-Alpha Build: Those of you who backed at the ADVENTURER tier and above will receive details on how to access it on Steam on Thursday, August 10th.

Again, we appreciate your patience while we been refining the experience even further. As a way of thanking you for hanging in there with us, we’ll be kicking off the first Developer Roundtable the week after the Pre-Alpha Build’s release on Wednesday, August 16th at 1PM EST on OtherSide’s Twitch page. Save the date!
It's now been almost two and a half years since Ascendant was Kickstarted. Other crowdfunded games have managed to go from Kickstarter to final release in that amount of time. Let's hope that the extra time and effort that OtherSide have invested into this game are reflected in the pre-alpha. It's make or break time.

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