Underworld Ascendant: Progress Update; New Level Designer; Lizard Man Language

OtherSide Entertainment posted — and then a while ago; I apologize for the delay! — a progress report for Underworld Ascendant earlier this month. Work on the game proceeds apace, it seems:

Like we’ve mentioned last month, our current efforts on Underworld Ascendant are focused on creating a tight, polished experience that demonstrates its core distinctive gameplay.

To do that, we’ve targeted an area on the second level of The Stygian Abyss, where the player is first introduced to the Improvisation Engine — the array of tools that allow you to experiment and create your own ingenious solutions to challenges.

The premise? The Lizard Men allow none entry to the key settlement of Marcaul, save the able. To gain access, you must prove yourself by completing The Challenge of Ishtass — a familiar character from Ultima Underworld, whose influence is felt throughout Underworld Ascendant.

In it, we provide you choices in combat, stealth, and magic. How you use them — to engage, evade, or manipulate the Lizard Men and horrific Mind Crippler — is up to you.

How’s it coming along? Long story short: We’ve been VERY BUSY!

In the same update, they also introduce us to a new member of the OtherSide team:

We’d like to introduce the most recent addition to our team, Underworld Ascendant level designer Justin Pappas.

Before OtherSide, Justin worked on the narrative-focused first-person shooter BioShock Infinite, melee combat brawler Chivalry: Medieval Warfare, and surreal VR escapades Albino Lullaby and Here They Lie.

We asked him a few questions about the level design process…

And finally, OtherSide are inviting their fans to help expand the language of the Lizard Men from the fairly basic dictionary introduced in Ultima Underworld:

Since the Lizard Men will play a big role in Underworld Ascendant, we intend to expand their vocabulary even further.

Want to help? Follow this link to our forums and you’ll find a handy guide to the rules of the language by our lead designer Tim Stellmach, all currently known words, and ideas on where this list may grow.

Your suggestions for new words may make it into Underworld Ascendant, either in text form or even performed by our stellar voice cast.

If that sounds interesting — and knowing some of the Ultima Dragons I know, there’s a few of you whose interest has indeed been piqued — you would do well to head on over to this forum thread and check out what the contest is all about.