Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Ultima 9

Ultima IX was one of the ultimate letdowns in the history of game sequels. Pretty much all of the previous games improved as the franchise continued, with the arguable exception of 8 (but Ultima 7 "The Black Gate" and 7 part 2 "Serpent Isle" were superb and very hard to follow). Ultima 9 took the leap into a properly 3D, third-person adventure, with a very clever physics engine and pretty graphics.
Sadly, it was released as a buggy, unconvincing game, with unsatisfying combat, awful AI, a fairly linear plot and an unimmersive environment - especially compared to the Black Gate where you could bake bread, sew thread into cloth and cut cloth into bandages, deliver pumpkins and meat and really interact with an enormous number of objects, as well as watch NPCs carry out believable tasks on a real schedule.

Perhaps the most enjoyable thing about Ultima 9 was the ability to build ridiculous, gigantic bridges out of sticks balanced atop scrolls lying on bottles balanced on loaves of bread, and jumping along the bridge in stages to cross the unswimmable sea between islands (!!).

No comments:

Post a Comment