Escape from the Underworld is a short exploration platformer that shares some design elements with some of the most successful indie games in recent history: Knytt, Iji, Seiklus, Cave Story, and, well, we could probably go on. In short, Escape from Underworld is a Metroidvania and it's really, really good.
Describing the opening scene would ruin your first "ZOMGNEAT" moment of the game, so suffice to say, you end up wandering the underworld caves, looking for a way to get out. You start off barely being able to jump, but a quick power-up allows you to do just thdat. Afterwards, it's all about exploring the passageways and finding item upgrades that help you explore even further. Most of the time you'll be nabbing health upgrades or extra lives, but sometimes you'll discover key items that really change the nature of the game.
When you first start wandering the underworld, you're weak and rather helpless. For this reason, you'll probably die a lot, as one hit sends you back to the last save point. Do yourself a favor, though, and persevere just a few more minutes, until you get a health upgrade or two. This instantly takes the frustration out of the game and opens up the fantastic experience that is Escape from the Underworld.
Apart from exploring dark passageways, you'll also take care of a few enemies, some of which are persistently annoying in their ways. You won't always have to run and hide from their attacks, though, and it's satisfying to meekly dodge everything only to come back later and vanquish all foes with a sword. The environment presents its share of dangers as well, with lava, spikes, rocks, and water getting in your way. Never fear, though, as there's always a way to deal with the problems of the world!
The gameplay is great, of course, and the whole of the experience that is Escape from the Underworld is breathtaking. But the game couldn't be half as epic without the amazing soundtrack by Prophecy. The music makes your time much more interesting, and there's a good variety of songs that change while you play, so you''ll never want for something good playing in your ear.
Escape from the Underworld was created by Banov (author of Dubloon) for Indie Kombat to go up against a submission by Andrew Brophy (A Weekend in Space, Takishawa is Dead, Angry Gorilla Machine Monsters author). Unfortunately, Brophy was forced to drop out, leaving Escape from the Underworld as the winner by default.
Do yourself a favor and play a great exploration platformer right this very second!
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