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Posts tagged “Ultima”

Shroud of the Avatar leaves early access March 27th

The past few years have been dense with reboots, remakes and Kickstarter-funded drives to return old franchises to life. When it was first announced, Shroud of The Avatar┬áseemed like a relatively safe bet; the original mind behind the Ultima series, returning to not only dust off the singleplayer and story-driven side of the franchise, but blend it with the fondly remembered gameplay mechanics of Ultima…

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Feature: Getting your keks

The RPG Scrollbars: Language Of Uncommon Tongues

The sign of a truly hardcore world is that it has its own languages. Klingon. Dothraki. Elvish. The term for these is 'Conlangs' - aka 'constructed languages' - and whether you see them as a vital part of world-building or a joke-in-waiting on The Big Bang Theory (they're due a third one one of these days), there's more to them than just slapping together some…

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Feature: Hanging lampshades and suspending disbelief

The RPG Scrollbars: Just Go Along With It, Okay?

Spoiler alert, RPGs are kinda ridiculous. Most games are, of course. While the Mythbusters may have shown that carrying Doomguy's loadout into battle isn't as bad as it might sound, there's a reason they've never done a follow-up about doing it after taking a few rockets to the face. Likewise, we can't know the effect of glugging down fifty health potions a day, but it…

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Feature: Homes away from home

The RPG Scrollbars: Sacred Worlds

Most RPGs ask you to save the world, but not all of them offer a world worth saving. Honestly, there's been quite a few where given the choice I'd have joined the evil overlord just to beat up all the potion vendors who wouldn't even give me a discount before the final battle, and for the mere chance of stabbing the guard in Act 1…

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Feature: Lightning bolt! Lightning bolt!

The RPG Scrollbars: The Lost Magic Of Magic

Given a choice, I almost always play as a mage. Swords? Pah. Divine magic? Save it for Sunday School. Give me control over the elements, the power to reshape the very building blocks of the universe according to my every whim, and if at all possible, a cool hat. It's an easy fantasy to indulge in almost any RPG out there. I just wish it…

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Feature: The Book Of Gripes

The RPG Scrollbars: The Worst Parts Of RPGs, Vol I

As wonderful as RPGs are, some tropes and cliches and just general bloody annoyances really do spoil the fun. Some of them might only crop up occasionally, others just won't go away. Some, you might think, are just petty irritations. But no! All these incontrovertible sins must be destroyed at once! Here's a few of my least favourite offenders. What others would you add to…

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Rule Britannia: Every Ultima For The Price Of A Pint

That's right - Ultima 1-9, plus the two Underworld games, for the price of a pint. And not one of those fancy craft ales that you'd sup in a tweedy pop-up bar that charges sixteen quid for a thimble filled with 'paprika-spiced apple cinnamon wedges' that taste like rancid Doritos. GOG.com are currently offering the Ultima bundle for $7.14. That's the price of a pint…

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Feature: "But Can We Kill Lord British This Time?"

Garriott On Shroud Of The Avatar, Why He Needs KS

Like so many role-playing pioneers before him, Richard Garriott has joined the boom-or-bust gold rush that is Kickstarter. However, unlike literally all of those same pioneers, Garriott's kinda, you know, been to space. He also owned an actual, factual castle at one point. The fates, in other words, haven't been unkind to his rather formidable fortune, and it stands to reason that he's not in…

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Beyond Britannia: Worlds Of Ultima Free At GOG

Free RPGs of old! I hadn't thought about the Worlds of Ultima games for a long time but they are now free on GOG.com and seeing that made me hunger for a continuation. Rather than taking place in Britannia, land of vice and virtue, the short-lived spin-off series transports the Avatar to fantastical Vernian environments, namely a savage jungle empire and a Victorian era Mars.…

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“Theoretically”: Garriott On Ultima Comeback

It's no secret that Richard 'King English' Garriott is working on a spiritual sequel to Ultima, having left the series' rights locked in an EA basement somewhere. It's no secret because he's said so, repeatedly. But what's more surprising is that he apparently isn't resigned to never getting them back - and he's even talking about working with EA again. The lion and the lamb!…

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Richard Garriott Wants To Rebuild Ultima

Lord British, aka Richard Garriott, aka the creator of clasic RPG series Ultima: he's been to space, which makes me instantly worry about him being some sort of replicant. It seems that since he's been back on Earth he's been pondering his next game. In a lenghty post on Facebook, he's announced his intention to make the "Ultimate RPG", distilling everything he's learned in 36…

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Valve + Looking Glass’ Doug Church = !!!!!!!!!!

Here's some news for you. And not just news. NEWS. Valve Software have just hired a new employee. And not just a new employee. A NEW EMPLOYEE. Doug Church. Doug 'Thief' Church. Doug 'System Shock' Church. Doug 'Ultima Underworld' Church. Doug 'Deus Ex' Church. Doug 'helped (to varying degrees) design a good dozen of the most beloved PC games of all time' Church. And now…

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Ultima’s Lord British Returns, Without Ultima

You can take the Lord British out of Ultima, but you can't take the Ultima out of Lord British. Does that make sense? Probably not, but it sounded good, which is essentially the story of my career. EA still jealously guards the Ultima license, despite not doing a whole lot with it outside of an only tangentially related free to play strategy game. However, it…

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Richard Garriott Plans “Ultima-Esque” Games

It seems worth noting what Mr Richard Garriott has been up to since his trip to outsidespace. Back in January Alec noted that the deposed Lord British would still very much like to work within the Ultima license. Since then he's announced his involvement with Portalarium - an online gaming doodah that intends to create social media type stuff. (Hard-hitting analysis.) Which is to say,…

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Holy Go Blighty: Memories of Ultima?

No, don't get over excited. No news of any new Ultima. But before I do the Sunday Papers, I thought this may make a worthwhile talking point. I was chatting with Paul Barnett of EA Mythic on Friday about Ultima, specifically people's memories of it. As in, it's one of the series which a towering thing in the PC history, but what it actually means…

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Lauded British: The Ultima 6 Project Beta

Brian RPGWatch brought news that The Ultima 6 Project has reached the public beta stage and is, by all accounts, pretty stable. The idea, much like the previous Ultima 5 Lazarus, is to reincarnate these seminal games in a more modern engine. In this case, Dungeon Siege. You can go and download the beta from here if you fancy a trip to Britannia. To see…

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What Would The Avatar Say?

Who can tell? But Lord British has given his blessing, apparently. As picked up via Game Set Watch who picked it up from Armchair Arcade. Italian photographer Enrico Ricciardi has created an Ultima-themed calender, showcasing the 12 virtues. Which sounds like a euphemism, if I've ever heard one. Anyway, skimming through the images, it seems like it's probably one for the Witcher fans. Oh yeah.…

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Richard Garriot Still Loves His Ultima

Just a quickie about GameDaily's fairly candid interview with Lord British hisself. The sometime space voyager mostly shares about his thoughts on the upcoming Tabula Rasa closure. He seems saddened but not devastated; perhaps that's because the old boy's seen plenty of his games suffer in the past, or perhaps it's endemic of how TR was never what it should have been. The bombshell, such…

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Project: Origin (No, Not That One)

Gaming archaeology: now there's an idea. It can only be better than Bonekickers, anyway. Upon hearing that EA Mythic had received several crateloads full of Origin Systems (the long-dead studio behind the Wing Commander and Ultima games, plus System Shock, and once home to the power duo of Warren Spector and Richard Garriot) archive materials, a group of fans arranged to catalogue the treasure trove.…

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