Written by  :  Jeff Sinasac (409)
Written on  :  May 26, 2000
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars

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Fabulous role-playing adventure.

The Good

This is actually the first CRPG I ever played, so admittedly I may be biased. But I think it was a lot of people's introduction to the world of computer role-playing.

The tile based maps were large, and with towns and an alternate world to explore (Ambrosia) there was a real sense of scope to this thing.

This was the first Ultima game to introduce multiple characters in the party, and combat screens.

There were dozens of character class and race combinations and the spell books were thick and very descriptively written.

The Bad

Character conversations were EXTREMELY limited. In fact, you didn't "talk" with characters, but "transacted" with them - and they replied with a single sentence. The truly frustrating aspect of this game for me was that since EVERY character in the game (except Lord British) only says one thing to you, and once you've heard it there's no need to talk to them again, I assumed Lord British was the same. Of course, transacting with him is the only way to increase your characters' hit points. I had a 63rd level Fuzzy Mage before I found out I could up his stats by talking to the king!

Also, the trouble of travelling to Ambrosia to increase characters' other stats meant that I only made the trip four times, once to increase each of my characters stats in their prime requisites.

And, through no fault of the programmers (but rather the hardware) the IBM version featured none of the glorious music that made the Commodore version (where I first played it) so much fun to listen to.

The Bottom Line

An extremely good RPG for its day, and a true piece of computer gaming history.