If Dead Cells is a 2D roguelike with a focus on melee combat, Ultros looks similar, except it’s ingested a wad of magic mushrooms and runs a vape store on the side. Revealed at last night’s PlayStation Showcase, Ultros not only looks gorgeous and action-packed, it has a peaceful side where you nurture lots of lovely plants. For now, I’m sold.
Cor, Ultros is a hit to the eyeballs isn’t it? All neon mushrooms, radioactive pollen, and green ooze. According to a PlayStation blog post, the psychedelic art style comes from the mind of artist El Huervo, who worked on the Hotline Miami series. The hand drawn details really pop when you see the caped protagonist Ouiji platform about and swing his glowy swords.
As for how the game plays, it seems like a traditional 2D metroidvania where you’ll attempt to explore the “Sarcophagus” as far as you can across multiple runs. Presumably, lots of cosmic cockroaches and warped weeds will make it as difficult as possible for you. Although, it looks like you’ve got a lot of sweet close-range stabs and spins to put them down with a spring in your step.
I’m most intrigued by the part of the game that revolves around “tending to an ecosystem and planting seeds”. Apparently, you can grow a variety of flora, “each with their own characteristics and effects; from unlocking skills and levelling-up abilities, to solving puzzles, to even subduing enemies”. You’ll alter the environment over multiple loops, which seems like a cool way to track your progress, too.
Ultros is due out on Steam and the Epic Games Store sometime in 2024.