ULTRAWORLD EXODUS is an abstract First-Person Exploration adventure/visual novel/Art toy/who-knows-what. It features two distinct modes: Story and Vacation.
In Story Mode, you work your way through a two-part narrative featuring self-aware NPCS, meta fourth-wall breaking, philosophical quandaries, and science fiction intrigue. It invites you to think for yourself, and could only be told in the medium of video games. Some people love it. Some people hate it. Feel free to decide for yourself!
In Vacation Mode, the words are removed and you're free to explore the landscape with a camera in hand. You're encouraged to change the colors, particles, and rendering modes as you fly over the vistas, clip through the walls, and attempt to take the greatest abstract landscape photos possible. There are no points for a reward, the finished Art is the reward itself. The screenshots are yours to keep (or share). Find your painting!
James Beech - Story, art, music, merch, etc. (sole creator)
Virtual worlds are as authentic as the real world. When I visit Hyrule, I'm visiting a place, not a level. I remember it just as I would Paris or Hawaii. My mind is equally nostalgic for polygon castles and those made of stone.
Do others feel this way? I don't know. I doubt it.
So I created someone that feels the same way and can explain this feeling far better than I. Someone that has only ever known "virtual" spaces and has no choice but to defend this as reality. ULTRAWORLD is treated as a real place that you happen to visit. The story is approached as someone talking to you casually when you show up in their home. Sure, they have a lot to say, but if you don't want to hear it you can just hang out by yourself (Vacation Mode).
In the game's first release, the first part of the story, your tour guide is very earnest about everything. Basically a child, it desperately wants your help. In the second part, which takes place one real-life year later (I had to wait to release the second half) your friend is distraught by the equally real-life reception to the original ULTRAWORLD release. Nobody helped, nobody cared.
The plan was always to react to how the world reacted to the game. I love that games, as an artistic and narrative medium, allow for ridiculous, impossible scenarios like this.
Visually, the game draws inspiration from my ancestry of landscape painting (father, great-grandfather). Besides, a game that asks you to take pictures of lush scenery needs to have lush scenery. And there are numerous ways to randomize the look, as I felt this was needed to avoid repetitious photography between players. Everyone can create something unique with the tools provided.