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Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced

BioWare unveils Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar, the promised announcement of a new free-to-play game, which turns out will be a new installment in the Ultima series of role-playing games when it is released later this year for Windows and iPads (with cross-platform support). The Ultima Forever Website is online, and is already accepting applications from prospective beta testers. There is an article about this on IGN where Paul Barnett tells them the game will feature Diablo-style combat, and should be available soon, since it is currently in the polishing stage. Here's part of the IGN description of the game, since it is more informative than the announcement:

Ultima Forever is a throwback to classic Ultima games, with mechanics grounded in Ultima IV. Starting as either a fighter or a mage (a druid and paladin class are coming later), your hero sets out on a quest to become the Avatar, a person who embodies what are known as the eight Virtues. Using a Baldur's Gate-like isometric perspective, you'll guide your hero either alone or with friends through hours and hours of quests, battling it out with monsters and making hard choices until your character embodies the virtues and reaches the end-game dungeons. Once you beat it, becoming the Avatar, you then start a new game plus, playing through all the content again on an even harder setting.

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55. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 13, 2012, 13:21 Mordecai Walfish
 
Had to laugh when I read that it uses a "Baldur's Gate-like isometric perspective".

Ultima did this first, why is this being described as "Baldur's Gate-like"? Silly marketing drones.
 
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54. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 13, 2012, 12:02 Matshock
 
MattyC wrote on Jul 13, 2012, 09:40:
This is beyond strange. Usually people on Blues are hating all over games and I am defending them. Here people are... ok with Ultima 9? I posted a link to the whole series review earlier, but this more or less sums up what I think about Ultima 9. If that is too long for you then this is an excellent short review of U9.

Seriously though, I cannot think of another game that was such a... well... betrayal of fans besides C&C 4.

Quick summary- both U8 and U9 were the products of a dysfunctional company in which the CEO was increasingly more involved in divesting rather than directing.

You could say a similar thing about Chris Roberts and movie making vs. Wing Commander 4 even though it was less of a disaster than U8/U9.

Remember the intrigue of U7 and WC3? Not there anymore. Remember the shock and awe of the confrontation with Batlin in U7SI? Nothing like that in U8/9- heck the intro movie in U9 was the best part of the story and then you can tell Garriot bailed on the project.

When you've got good resources failing is a choice.
 
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53. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 13, 2012, 09:40 MattyC
 
This is beyond strange. Usually people on Blues are hating all over games and I am defending them. Here people are... ok with Ultima 9? I posted a link to the whole series review earlier, but this more or less sums up what I think about Ultima 9. If that is too long for you then this is an excellent short review of U9.

Seriously though, I cannot think of another game that was such a... well... betrayal of fans besides C&C 4.
 
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52. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 13, 2012, 08:50 MacLeod
 
Ultima 9... I still have that box somewhere. It was huge. It was the one game I can remember that was so bug-filled at release that the company actually had to manually ship patch CDs to everyone because they couldn't patch it. (along with a free copy of Ultima Online)  
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51. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 13, 2012, 04:30 Linthat22
 
Can we just call this new breed Ultima Adventures?  
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50. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 23:56 Silicon Avatar
 
I think Garriot was probably a decent game designer who surrounded himself with good talent, but he was bad at managing time and he was bad at managing a company.

He sold out to EA because Origin Systems was tanking, but after he did that I think EA took the reigns away slowly until he just didn't care anymore and the final product (U9) shows his disinterest. Around that time EA was really into UO and I guess they thought they could ride that pony forever.

EA has been trying to do something with single-player Ultima on and off for a while, but they never had the people in place to do it any justice. Bioware/Mythic might have made a good game out of it 4 years ago but now it seems like they're just shells full of group-think and yes-men.

That's my 2 cents about EA/Origin/Garriot anyhow.
 
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49. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 22:52 Matshock
 
WyldKat wrote on Jul 12, 2012, 21:22:
The sick/sad thing is that if EA hadn't mishandled and fucked with Origin (the REAL Origin) and the Ultima series they would have had a franchise that would have rivaled The Elder Scrolls series to this very day. Ultima 6 and 7 advanced the genre so much in how you could interact with the environment.

I blame Garriot as much as EA- I knew what was going to happen back then and I was a dumb teenager.

Then Roberts went off to make a movie and the rest is history.

The sad thing is that there's a great formula just sitting there ready to be picked up again (U6/U7) and it would work just fine today and have almost no competition.

 
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48. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 21:52 Silicon Avatar
 
EA ruins pretty much everything it touches. The only reason they are able to stick around is because they sell sports games to rednecks and then buy up real game studios with the profits.

 
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47. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 21:22 WyldKat
 
The sick/sad thing is that if EA hadn't mishandled and fucked with Origin (the REAL Origin) and the Ultima series they would have had a franchise that would have rivaled The Elder Scrolls series to this very day. Ultima 6 and 7 advanced the genre so much in how you could interact with the environment.  
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46. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 20:57 MattyC
 
NegaDeath wrote on Jul 12, 2012, 19:30:
Really now, EA is doing Ultima fans a favor. After this is released EVERYONE will be able to agree on which Ultima is the worst. It'll bring the community together.

I dunno, were we not all in agreement that 9 was really really bad? The review of 9 isn't finished (that I linked earlier) but it really sums up my feelings on the game.
 
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45. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 20:52 wtf_man
 
Isn't this thing browser based???

Yeah, I know they say PC and IPad... but it looks like it will be a "partial thick client" app with a browser based renderer. (like Steam)

YUCK!
 
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44. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 19:30 NegaDeath
 
Really now, EA is doing Ultima fans a favor. After this is released EVERYONE will be able to agree on which Ultima is the worst. It'll bring the community together.  
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43. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 19:11 Dades
 
Classic EA franchise my ass.  
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42. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 18:55 Talisorn
 
This news make the baby avatar cry.  
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41. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 18:41 Frags4Fun
 
nin wrote on Jul 12, 2012, 10:45:
I hate to shit on something right out of the gate, but when I see "free to play" I totally lose interest...

Also EA dragging something out the bottom of the closet and tossing it to Mythic/Bioware isn't helping my opinion of it...


My thoughts exactly. F2P = complete turn-off for me.
 
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40. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 17:04 Deepjay
 
I'm surprised no-one has mentioned 'Paul Barnett says:...'


HAHA, yeah Paul, yeah.
 
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39. Gimmick... Jul 12, 2012, 16:56 JohnBirshire
 
Ultima 6, 7, Underworld 2, and UO are all in my top 10 favorite games of all time. *With the first Elder Scrolls, Syndicate, Privateer, Monkey Island, and a few others rounding out the list* I'm also halfway through a replay of Ultima 3 Exodus as we speak. However, being a hardcore Ultima fan, I could care less about this new one. In my opinion it isn't even an Ultima game, just another gimmick with the name Ultima slapped on it like that online strategy game from a few years ago. I can't complain though, even if one person plays it and likes it enough to try some of the REAL classic Ultima's, then I'm happy.  
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38. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 16:45 PHJF
 
Anyone that enjoyed Ultima should go pick up Avernum on Steam right abouts now. Escape From The Pit is the newest, fullest iteration.  
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Steam + PSN: PHJF
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37. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 16:38 Ozmodan
 
The Ultima series and Diablo are worlds apart. Mixing PC and tablets means really crappy UI. I will pass on this POS.  
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36. Re: Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar Announced Jul 12, 2012, 15:05 Elim
 
7 was the best. 9 is a disgrace. And what EA does now? I go and fucking cry.  
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