For those who do not know their gaming history, 21 years ago a game was made called Descent. It was a wonderful game that redefined action shooters and gave us true six degrees of freedom (6DOF) and let us move in any way we wanted in space while shooting evil robots. It had many sequels due its well-crafted campaign, and multiplayer support in a time where almost nothing was online capable. But now, there is a successor to the throne, and the prodigal son has returned in the form of Descent:Underground.
Still in early access, D:U has a huge fan following, easily reaching its goal on Kickstarter. The future goals of this development team are lofty and ambitious, but certainly possible. Even now it has a multiplayer focus with a handful of maps to choose from, and more than 5 ships to choose from, which is a welcome change from the original two decades previously. It has been said by the developers that there will be a campaign, and that they plan to grow the ship roster considerably.
The development has been a long road for this new studio, and I have been following it for some time, and have had more than a few bugs to deal with along the way. That said, the developers have been very frank about their success and failures, and always update the fan base with video blogs, posts, and actively look to see how they can better their product. This is a welcome change to many larger development teams, and the honesty is appreciated.
Built on the unreal 4 engine, its graphics are certainly better than its predecessor, and even a match for most AAA games out today. There are also traps and gadgets to help you in your quest for victory, so it plays very differently from the multiplayer of past. While it does have some upgrades to both gameplay and graphics, there is absolutely an atmosphere of the original present. The ships are well balanced to each other, but they still have the first ship available for fans of the old game like me.
As of this writing, the only real flaw to this new title is the lack of a campaign. Descent was very important to many growing up, and I had so much fun playing all the campaigns when I was young, so to see it without this crucial gameplay mode is almost disturbing. But, whether you loved the original for its multiplayer, its campaign, or have never even heard of this series, you should absolutely checkout this upcoming title.