October 1, 2004

Re-Awakening

Vendira,

Exactly three years ago today, on Oct 1st of 2001, the Freeborn Press Newspaper shut down its press operations to the general public of the Baja Shard of Ultima Online. Today, three years later I am proud to announce a limited re-opening of the Freeborn Press, which will primarily cover news posted to the City of Avalon pages, and the occasional piece of archivable Lumarian news that could potentially cross my desk.

Thanks go out to ‘Nobody’ for providing the communication crystals to get us up and going once more.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:30 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 30, 2004

Communication Crystal Tuning

This is a test of the Freeborn Press News Crystals. Bearing no interruptions, our paper will resume operations in a limited fashion tomorrow, exactly three years after its inkwells ran dry.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:34 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 25, 2004

Freeborn Press archives - November 2000 through January 2001

The Freeborn Press archives for the months of November 2000 through January 2001 have been imported into the new publishing tool. This concludes the importing of the Freeborn Press articles, as this was the last set required to be imported.

Posted by Nobody at 1:47 AM

Freeborn Press archives - February 2001

The Freeborn Press archives for the month of February 2001 have been imported into the new publishing tool.

Posted by Nobody at 12:16 AM

July 23, 2004

Freeborn Press archives - March through June 2001

The Freeborn Press archives for the months of March through June 2001 have been imported into the new publishing tool.

Posted by Nobody at 11:57 AM

July 22, 2004

Freeborn Press archives - July & August 2001

The Freeborn Press archives for the months of July & August 2001 have been imported into the new publishing tool.

Posted by Nobody at 10:21 PM

July 21, 2004

Freeborn Press archives - September 2001

The Freeborn Press archives have begun being imported into the new publishing tool. The archives for September 2001 are the first to be imported.

(Fans of the previous iterations of Freeborn Press will note that the "submitted by" and reporter sign-off notes are no longer present. The limits of the new publishing tool made converting them into the new format effectively impossible.)

Posted by Nobody at 12:49 PM

October 1, 2001

Freeborn Press Inkwell Runs Dry

After several months of thought I have finally decided to close the doors of the Freeborn Press for good. The paper was 3 years old as of this date, and offered news on a constant basis, with a small lapse of publication around the beginning of 2000.

Due to the small niche market Baja entails, the repetition of news in a few arenas, and an increased level of community awareness, I felt the Press was no longer needed. Chief among my reasons was a desire to move on to new projects or hobbies outside of UO, although this does not mean I will be giving up my UO account. Ill just be scaling back my time spent on UO related activity.

Id like to take the time to thank all the people who poured their time into the Press over the years, mainly Rich & Nobody. Thank you for your dedication in programming and submission help.

Id also like to thank all the contributors who submitted news articles, offered advice, and viewed the editors as non-partial Baja news gatherers during its run. Thanks to Ursula, Atrius, Pat Factor, Lizzard, Kvarno, Shard, Azalin, Bren Star, Desmond, MacDeath, Crys, and anyone else I might have forgotten that helped enhance the sites content. There were so many over the years that its hard to remember them all.

Thank you, the reader, for your continued readership over the years. It took a lot of hard work and potential playing time to keep the project going, and we are extremely glad you supported us with your subscriptions. In our absence, we would like to direct you to the Baja News Section at Stratics.

In days to come we hope to keep the entities page operational and on possibly on the front page, so Baja citizens can still access links to the various communities on the Shard.

Heres to three years of memories on Baja.



Luvai,

Hazard
Freeborn Editor-In-Chief

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:06 PM

September 25, 2001

Secure House Trading / Commodity Deeds / Repair Service Contracts

The following three new items were posted to In Concept:

Secure House Trading
  • A method for increasing the security of house trading will implemented
Commodity Deeds
  • New items known as �commodity deeds� will give players the opportunity to transport and trade resources, of sizes that were previously unable to be held within a character�s backpack, with greater ease and security than before.
Repair Service Contracts
  • One of the cornerstones of Ultima Online is the activity of players sharing items with other players in order to obtain repairs for their armor and weapons. A supplement to these transactions will now exist in the form of "repair service contracts."
Toggle the links for full information on each concept.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 11:27 PM

Client Patch

From FYI:

We will be releasing a client patch on Tuesday, September 25th at approximately 2:30 pm CDT. This patch contains a fix for a data error, and does not contain any gameplay changes.

NOTE: As there are no executable changes contained in this patch, the in-game version numbers will not change, and should still read 3.0.4p (2D client) and 3.0.4p Build 77 (3D client).

If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
  • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
  • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
  • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.mcafee.com/myapps/vso/default.asp.
If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:40 PM

September 21, 2001

Guaranteed Gain System

The following was posted to In Concept:

In essence, this proposed modification to the skill gain system would eliminate the need for "power hour" by providing opportunities for guaranteed skill gain during normal play.
You can read more about the 'Guaranteed Gain System' here.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:47 PM

September 20, 2001

Seattle Player Luncheon?

Joshua Rowan and I have planned the last two Seattle Player Luncheons and are considering our third. Before we get too involved, we need to find out if there is interest in such an event. We are looking at a date of Dec. 8th for a luncheon. If this is something you'd be interested in attending, please write to Ursula at ursula@townofgolden.net. This does not committ you to anything, it's just giving us an idea on how many people are interested.

Ursula
Golden Brew Owner, Golden Knight

Posted by Thellaren at 10:34 AM

September 19, 2001

Gromm Discusses UO Fiction

Posted on the 17th to Comments From the Team (Gromm, Designer of Content for UO):

One of my favorite things about my new position as an Ongoing Content designer for UO is the chance to work with the rich Ultima Prime fiction. I, like many of you, played the Ultima games when I was a wee lad. I grew up with people like Iolo and Dupre for heroes, and monsters like Mondain, Exodus, and the Guardian as enemies. The stories and characters from those original games influenced me growing up. Now Im in a position where Im partially responsible for those characters and stories.

So we have Ultima Online. A world parallel to the original Britannia, born when the stranger shattered Mondains Gem of Immortality. A world we all knew was going to have familiar heroes and villains. A world we knew was going to have familiar towns and cities. And a world we knew we were familiar with from the Ultima Prime games.

But heres the fun part its a world where everything you know about Ultima Prime lore could be wrong. Many people consider the original Ultima Prime fiction as sacred and I tend to agree, but my point, and I think its a very important one, is: This is not Ultima Prime.

When we plan a scenario we, of course, refer back to the prime fiction. After all, these are the events and characters that shaped the Ultima legend and made it what it is today. We like to make sure we dont contradict the original principles that made Ultima what it is, but we want to avoid telling the same stories all over again. And now we have thousands of people to tell the story to instead of the single player taking on the role of the Avatar.

I tend to think of the way we plan on using the Ultima fiction similar to some comic book franchises. Take, for example, Batman. The story of the dark knight has been retold tons of times. Multiple comic book incarnations, movies, cartoons, and crossovers have been made. Every time the story has been told in a different way. Sometimes different characters live and die. Sometimes they have different relationships. On occasion, a story will go way out on a limb and take a totally new approach to the legend (Batman Beyond anyone?).

This is essentially what we want to do with the Ultima legends. Youre going to see some familiar faces and some familiar events come to pass, but in ways you may not have expected. The shards may be reflections of the original Britannia, but the events and characters within them are going to be very different from the way you knew them. The future is going to be a very different one, and the past may not be what you think it is.

Like any fantasy or science fiction, liberties must be taken at times to keep things interesting. Rules sometimes have to be broken or ignored. Im not saying were going to ignore major game plot points, but sometimes the smaller things wont be explained. Changes to game mechanics or spawn usually doesnt come with a fictional explanation, its just a change made for game balance. Its details such as those you wont see us sweating too much over. We want the world to have a history and a story, but not down to every last patch of ground in the game. Its not that we dont care about having a realistic world, but we have to remember this is a video game. Sometimes were just going to have to ask that you use a bit of suspension of disbelief. I have yet to see any science fiction or fantasy where it wasnt needed at all.

So hopefully this gives you a little insight as to how were currently viewing the fiction in UO. I think youre going to find the events that transpire in game are going to surprise you and, I hope, entertain you.

Im looking forward to seeing many of you at the world faire this year and as always, keep the feedback coming.

Enjoy

Gromm
Designer, Ongoing Content

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:01 AM

September 18, 2001

Client Patch 3.04p

OSI released a client patch today, Tuesday, September 18th at approximately 3:00 pm CDT. The patch changes can be read here.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:46 PM

Promoting The Arts In UO

Greetings!

I would like to invite all playwrights and those interested in theater to get involved with the artistic community on Baja.

As a founder of The Golden Brew Players, our intention was to promote original works and encourage other groups to produce their own productions.

The Golden Brew Players have done several plays throughout the past few years and would love to give another group or individual a chance to step up and show their stuff.

We have a theater located in the Town of Golden. It is available for any group that would like to put on a theatrical production. If you'd like to see one of your stories produced write to me, Ursula. I can try to get a group together or interested in putting it on.

We have many talented and creative people on Baja, let's join together and continue to build a wonderful artistic community.

Ursula

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 10:14 AM

Houses Automatically Refreshed

From FYI:

Even as we resume our lives after the tragic events of September 11th, we at Origin understand that many people are still unable to attend to things at home, due to travel issues, communication difficulties, or concern for missing loved ones. To help accommodate those players who have been in any way affected by these events, Origin Systems will be automatically refreshing all Ultima Online houses through the entire month of September.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:19 AM

September 14, 2001

Client Patch 3.0.4p

From Testing for Next Update:

Various updates and bug fixes, including paperdoll updates, localization files, and a crash issue involving non-humans trying to sit.

3D Client
  • Paperdoll no longer closes and reopens to refresh the paperdoll model.
  • Players will no longer be able to equip non-wearable objects by dropping them on the paperdoll background. This was causing drag slot problems preventing them from picking things up.
  • Various animation files.
Both Clients
  • Fixed a crash bug that occurred whenever non-humans tried to sit.
  • Various localization files.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 7:30 PM

Player Owned Barkeeps

From Latest Updates:

Players will now be able to purchase and own a barkeep, that can be placed in the player's house. A new item called "a barkeep contract" can be purchased from either a new barkeep "shopkeeper" (which can be found in non-player character taverns) or an innkeeper (which can be found in NPC inns).

The "prime" owner of a house (but not a co-owner), who is in his or her house, will be able to double-click a barkeep contract so as to place a barkeep. The house must be "public" in order to place a barkeep.
The barkeeps will serve as a method for players to support and announce their own events and quests. The barkeeps will have the following properties:
  • Saying "news" to a barkeep will give a scenario hint, just like a town crier.
  • The "tip rumor" will be optional and customizeable by the player owner. Amounts of gold under 50 gold will cause the Barkeep to speak this rumor. Amounts over 50 gold will be returned.
  • In addition to the one tip rumor, players can put 3 "oracle style" rumors with keywords on the Barkeep. (oracle style rumors are spoken once certain keywords are said by the player. The rumor and linking keyword are added to the Barkeep by the player owner).
  • There will be no limitations on what style of housing the Barkeeps can be placed within (provided that the house is set to be "public" and not "private").
  • Barkeeps will be customizeable like a player vendor, with clothing/dress options.
  • The Barkeep owner can make the Barkeep male or female.
  • The Barkeep owner can choose another title for the Barkeep other than "Barkeep", from a list of between 30-50 different job titles.
  • Up to two Barkeeps will be allowed per home.
Barkeeps will be in the various taverns throughout the cities, to support the scenarios as well, with the scenario rumors. However, players will not be able to add rumors to these barkeeps.

The titles for the "Bartender" can be chosen from the following list:
  • alchemist
  • animal tamer
  • apothecary
  • artist
  • baker
  • barkeep
  • beggar
  • blacksmith
  • bounty hunter
  • brigand
  • butler
  • carpenter
  • chef
  • commander
  • curator
  • drunkard
  • farmer
  • fisherman
  • gambler
  • gypsy
  • herald
  • herbalist
  • hermit
  • innkeeper
  • jailor
  • jester
  • librarian
  • mage
  • mercenary
  • merchant
  • messenger
  • miner
  • monk
  • noble
  • paladin
  • peasant
  • pirate
  • prisoner
  • prophet
  • ranger
  • sage
  • sailor
  • scholar
  • scribe
  • sentry
  • servant
  • shepherd
  • soothsayer
  • stoic
  • storyteller
  • tailor
  • thief
  • tinker
  • town crier
  • treasure hunter
  • waiter
  • warrior
  • watchman
  • No Title

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 7:26 PM

Bulk Order Deeds

From General Testing:

Bulk Orders
Bulk orders will be a new feature for crafters, and will be randomly offered by NPC craftspeople to players who sell goods, depending on their skill in the respective craft, and how often the player does business with the NPC.

The bulk order feature is a new addition, and will be implemented only for blacksmiths at this time, allowing us a chance to evaluate and improve the system before expanding it to include more of the crafts.

Players with a sufficient skill in blacksmithy will have a chance to recieve bulk order requests from NPC Armorers and Blacksmiths when they sell goods to those NPCs.

When offered, the bulk order is in the form of a grey deed. Double-clicking this deed brings up the details of the order, such as the item name, amount to make, quality of the item requested, and the ore type.

To complete a regular order, the player can use the "combine" button on the deed to combine the crafted items with the deed until the amount of items the deed requests has been reached. Once the correct amount of items has been created and combined with the deed, the deed can then be dropped on the NPC for a reward.

Small Orders
Small orders, the only ones given to players with less than 70 skill, will request items that will allow the player to gain skill.

Large Orders
Large bulk orders will be extremely difficult to fill, in that each large bulk order may consist of filling and combining several smaller bulk orders. For instance, a large bulk order for blacksmiths may require 20 full sets of armor to be made. The player must obtain several smaller bulk orders, each requiring 20 pieces of an individual piece of armor. These smaller orders for the individual pieces must be completed, and combined into the large bulk order before the large bulk deed can be returned to the NPC for a reward. The smaller orders must be for the same number, quality, and ore type as the original large bulk order. Large bulk orders offer higher rewards, and are only offered to blacksmiths with 70 blacksmithy skill or higher.

All items craftable by blacksmiths can be requested by a blacksmith's bulk order. The quality, quantity, and ore type are chosen at random. The quality is limited to normal or exceptional. The quantity is limited to 10, 15, or 20. The ore types are iron, dull copper, shadow, copper, bronze, golden, agapite, verite, and valorite.

Rewards
The rewards are threefold. The first reward is gold. A check will be given to the person fulfilling the order if the amount is equal to or above 5000 gold. The second reward is a special item not available currently in the game, chosen based on the difficulty of the order. The third reward is an amount of fame, which is based on the difficulty of the deed.

The reward items are not listed here, in order to allow blacksmiths to discover for themselves what rewards will be available.

Examples
The easiest bulk order to complete would be an order for 10 buckler shields of normal quality and made with iron ingots. The reward would be a moderate amount of fame, some gold, and a special item.

The hardest bulk order to complete would be a large bulk order for 20 suits of platemail (all 6 pieces) of exceptional quality made with valorite. The player would need to have a large bulk order deed, as well as six small bulk order deeds, each for the same number, quality, and ore type, and each for a different piece of the full armor set. These six small orders (each for 20 of a particular armor piece, of exceptional quality, and made from valorite ingots) would need to be combined into the deed. The reward would be an enormous amount of fame, a bank check for a large sum of gold, and a magical item.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 7:07 PM

West Coast Shards Brought Down

From FYI:

In order to correct an issue with the latest publish on the West Coast shards (Pacific, Baja, Sonoma, and Napa Valley), those shards have been brought down for a short period of time. We anticipate the downtime to be less that 45 minutes. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:42 PM

A Moment of Silence

From FYI:

In remembrance of the victims of this week's attacks, we would like to join the rest of the gaming community in conducting a moment of silence and reflection in game at 8:00 PM CDT (6:00 PDT). Please note that this is voluntary, and we ask that players not call our support department to report others who choose not to participate.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 11:47 AM

September 13, 2001

Player Owned Bartenders Published

From FYI:

Player-owned bartenders (listed in Testing for Next Update) have now been published to all shards, and will be active shortly after their next scheduled maintenance period.

Note that the bartenders will not be active immediately. In order to enable players to purchase bartenders, we must first wipe and reset all current non-essential NPCs, including shopkeepers and creatures. This will not affect stablemaster NPCs, players pets, or player-owned vendors. This wipe will be done on Friday morning, Sept. 14th CDT, and players can expect to see a low creature spawn for a short time until the numbers have returned to normal.

This change will be added to Latest Game Updates once the bartenders are active on all shards.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:12 PM

In Remembrance

From 'What's New':

During difficult times, people look to their friends and their community for strength and for solidarity. The Ultima Online community is no different. People from all across the globe and from every walk of life have joined together in the wake of recent tragic events, and have come forth to show that we are strong, and we are unified.

Images from around the UO Community

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 6:38 PM

September 12, 2001

Auto House Refresh

From FYI:

We understand that many travel and communication avenues, businesses, financial institutions, etc. have been hampered or closed due to yesterday's events, which has no doubt caused many players difficulties in accessing their UO accounts. We are also aware that yesterday was a day for helping others and a day of concern for family and friends. Due to the seriousness of this occasion, we will be refreshing all houses automatically this afternoon in order to help players who may have been unable to access their accounts.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 6:15 PM

Inappropriate Behavior in Ultima Online

From FYI:

In light of recent events, wed like to take this opportunity to remind players that inappropriate behavior of a racial or hateful nature will not be tolerated in game. Inappropriate (racist, discriminatory, sexually explicit, derogatory, or offensive in any way) names and actions are in violation of both the spirit of the Ultima Online community and the Ultima Online Service Agreement.

Please be aware that if your character is caught with an offensive name, or is found acting inappropriately in game, your account will be subject to discipline and may be subject to permanent suspension.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:09 AM

Vigil at Shrine of Compassion

At 7pm PDT last evening, many of Baja's citizens flocked to the Shrine of Compassion to pay their respects to those injured or killed in the attacks on Washington DC & New York. Here is a picture of the scene:



In addition, citizens across the realm created the following tributes of their own:

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:57 AM

Savage Paint Fix and Orc Brute Update

From Testing for Next Update:

Two Scenario-related matters are being updated:
  • Players wearing savage paint will now be trackable using the tracking skill.
  • The orc brute will have its loot increased and will have a chance to carry (and use) a magic war mace

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:07 AM

Veteran Rewards Update - Baja

From FYI:

The issues with the Veteran Rewards system have been resolved. The system should be active on all shards that had Veteran Rewards active previous to the downtime.

The Veteran Rewards system was activated on the Siege Perilous shard yesterday, September 11th. We are targeting to activate the system on the Baja and Europa shards sometime today. Please refer to the previously released schedule for information on when we anticipate Veteran Rewards to be activated on the remaining shards.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:00 AM

September 11, 2001

Baja Mourns Real Life Tragedy


12:30pm PST at the Britain Bank - Trammel

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:16 PM

Veteran Rewards Schedule

From FYI:

The connectivity fix for the Veteran Rewards system has been published to all shards, and we are ready to resume activation of the Veteran Rewards system! We are targeting to activate the system on each remaining shard at some point during the day designated below, which means that players should not expect the system to be active immediately following their scheduled morning maintenance. Please note that this schedule is subject to change, and may be extended should any unforeseen issues arise with the rewards system.

All dates listed are Central Daylight Time.
  • Tuesday, Sept. 11: Siege Perilous
  • Wednesday, Sept. 12: Europa and Baja
  • Thursday, Sept. 13: Arirang and Great Lakes
  • Friday, Sept. 14: Catskills and Hokuto
  • Monday, Sept. 17: Oceania, Izumo, and Wakoku
  • Tuesday, Sept. 18: Drachenfels, Mizuho, and Asuka
  • Wednesday, Sept. 19: AOL Legends, Balhae, and Formosa

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:04 AM

September 10, 2001

Power Hour Changes

From Testing for Next Update:

The first hour that each character is played on a given day, known as the Power Hour, allows that character a possibility of bonus skill point advancements.

The Previous Standard

In the past, the power hour time frame on each shard was reset at midnight local time, meaning that players could always get a new power hour after midnight, regardless of when they last played.

Recent Changes

Recently, the local times for all shards were reset to use a standardized clock, which does not undergo Daylight Savings Time. Due to this change, power hour no longer reset itself at midnight local time, but reset at the same time across all shards, which caused the power hours to reset at inconvenient times for some players.

The Solution

To resolve this issue, power hour will now be calculated based on the players play time, rather than the shards local time.

Players will experience a power hour during their first hour of play a character within a 24 hour period, which means that technically, the power hour will be refreshed 23 hours after the previous power hour has ended. If a player does not log in for over 24 hours, their power hour will begin as soon as they log in, and last for the full hour.

As an example, a player who logs in at 8:00 PM local time will experience a power hour that will last until 9:00 PM. They will not be able to experience another power hour during that 24 hour period, so they will not receive another power hour until at least 8:00 PM the following day. If they do not log in again until 10:00 PM, they will experience their full power hour, beginning at 10:00 PM and lasting until 11:00 PM. The following day, they will not be able to experience a power hour until at least 10:00 PM local time.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:17 PM

Veteran Rewards and Power Hour Update

From FYI:

We will be releasing a mini-publish today that should fix a connectivity issue with the Veteran Rewards system, as well as fix a problem that caused power hour to reset at the wrong time (see information on the power hour fix here). We will be bringing the shards down to publish this update this afternoon, and we anticipate the downtime to be no more than half an hour.

Once the publish is active, we will monitor the shards that are currently running the Vet Rewards system, and, barring any unforeseen issues, will release a schedule later today for the activation of Vet Rewards on the remaining shards. Keep an eye on FYI for new information!

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:14 PM

September 7, 2001

Radnor on the Seer Program

Seer Radnor recently had the following to say about the new volunteer seer program:

Admittedly, it won't restart the OSI sanctioned Seers program. But, we are attempting to do what that program did, albeit, without the powers and immortality that was the gift of OSI. We'll do our best at coming as close to what that fantastic group did, though.

We have several different events and quests in the final stages of design and it should be within a week that you will see a bit of our work (read "fun") on a couple of the shards.

Due to my in depth involvement at moving this program along, I have been promoted to Lead Seer for the Western Shards. I am actively recruiting any and all players who have the time and interest in joining our group. Anyone interested, click on the url for our web site and "read all about it". And, our Stratics Forum is located here. Any questions, you have my ICQ and email address below. Gimme a holler...

Lead Seer Radnor
Western Shards
radnor@rogerswebs.com
UO Seers Web Site
ICQ 128071387

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 11:17 AM

September 5, 2001

Comments from Stellerex

The following comments from Stellerex, Senior Producer of UO, were posted to the Official UO Website:

Most residents of Britannia would really like to know what OSI has planned for the future of the kingdom. Chances are if they got their wish, though, it would spoil the fun of discovery and anticipation that comes with any good mystery. For those folks, I would like to take this opportunity to give some assurances that we are indeed working on some very significant features that I believe will return the real flavor of Ultima to Britannia.

Although the core people on the dev team will continue to address continuous content, system improvements, and GM support, Ive mentioned a couple of times in the past that the team is bigger than it has ever been before. Real expansion of the world and the game is within our grasp. Life well, virtual life - has really only just begun.

And before anybody asks, no Im not going to give specific details. Not that some folks wont read into my comments and figure out a lot anyway. Every once in a while, I like to turn a phrase just the right way to give a clue, and see if anybody can figure it out. Chances are Im too obscure in my presentation, but its fun to give it a whirl anyway.

Regardless of that, there are plenty of obvious improvements that have recently been released as well. Everybody should have noticed by now that its more fun to create a starting character and work your way upward. A first circle spell is actually useful for something besides skill improvement, for instance. Though many veterans get upset when we make changes specifically for new players, they do have to realize that improving the learning experience helps to grow the community and make the world more vibrant. Unpopular as that idea may sound at first, hopefully most of you can see the long-term benefits to keeping the population of the world strong.

Real life always has a way of creeping back into our plans, though, so weve also been making strides to listen more closely to our veteran players. Everything from the Scenario program to upcoming changes for the Siege Perilous shard has been a consistent effort to attend to that. Siege Perilous is being modified by members of the design team who really enjoy that style of play, so Im confident its moving in the right direction. Veterans Rewards are finally having the final kinks worked out, after much ado, and that system will be active on all shards soon. I have to admit, its taken us quite a bit of work, but its a system that can be adapted for other uses in the future, so hopefully all of the work will pay off in the long run.

Running just a little behind that, were working on two very significant undertakings that youll be able to find out more about at this years World Faire. Technically, I cant go into specific detail on that, but Ive given a couple of clues already. Until the end of October rolls around, youll just have to watch carefully for little foreshadowing and hints of whats to come.

Even thats not the whole picture! Several more publishes are on the horizon to address even more client optimizations (for both the 2D and 3D clients), new game art, improved user interfaces, new creatures, and even new craftables. Yes, it sounds like a lot, but thats one of the benefits of having such a large dev team. Simultaneous development paths are wonderful things.

Tomorrow isnt that far off, but until then Id like to leave you with a few key concepts that should give you a feel for what were trying to aim at now and in the future. Environment and personality. Mechanics that are simple, but provide depth. Intuitive UI. Less tedium. Systems instead of features. Harder quests. Easier learning curves. NPCs and monsters that have some intelligence. Action and pacing in combat. Return to the Ultima tradition. Fighting with a purpose. Originality. Role playing. Attention to community. Logical, thematic enhancements. Let me know if you have suggestions, because Im always happy to chat.

Stellerex
Senior Producer
Ultima Online

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:53 PM

Client Patch 3.0.4n

From FYI:

We will be releasing a client patch on Wednesday, September 5th at approximately 5:30 pm CST. This patch contains the following changes:
  • Disappearing macro bug fixed
  • Invisible house/boat bug fixed
  • Asian characters will no longer appear at the end of macros
  • Some localization files
The current versions should now be 3.0.4n (2D client) and 3.0.4n Build 75 (3D client).

NOTE: Windows 95 users that have not upgraded to Winsock 2 may receive the error missing winsock32.dll. To fix this problem, these users should download and install the new version of Winsock, which can be found here. If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
  • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
  • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
  • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.mcafee.com/myapps/vso/default.asp.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:38 PM

Crafting Overhaul Update

The following was posted to the UO Boards today by Designer Vex:

I just wanted to take a moment and post some updates to the crafting system overhaul:

1> Cooking will be included in the new menu system. The tools will be:
* Skillet - this is a renamed frypan (to preserve the rarity of any existing frypans, and any existing frypans will not be usable as cooking tools)
* Flour Sifter
* Rolling Pin

Players will be able to once again turn wheat sheaves into sacks of flour. This will be done through the cooking menu. The player must be near a flour mill.

2> New Tools:
All the new tools added with this update (above cooking tools, fletcher's tools, mapmaker's and scribe's pens) will be available on appropriate NPCs (cooks, mapmakers, scribes, bowyers). The new tools will also appear as "newbiefied" starting equipment for characters who start with these skills. All of these new tools will wear out and break. Exceptionally crafted versions of these tools made by player tinkers will last longer than normal or NPC-bought ones.

3> Material Handling:
If all the materials required to make an item are located in the same subcontainer in the player's backpack, the resulting item will be placed in that subcontainer.

For tailoring, tinkering, blacksmithy (and any future craftables where the item created can obtain properties of materials used), there will be a toggle to target materials. For blacksmithy and tinkering, this option will be an additional item on the Metal Selection menu. When the Target Material option is selected, the player receives a targeting cursor and is prompted to target material to be used. The material targeted must be in the player's backpack.

4> Jewelry
The bug that allows the creation of items with names like "a 10000 diamonds necklace" is not going to be part of the revamped crafting system. It is important to note that even though the entire description of the stack of gems (including the number) was previously included in the name of the crafted piece of jewelry, only one gem was consumed from the stack when a piece of jewelry was made from it.

Currently, the plan is to not fix those items and leave the names un-localized. Please note that while this bug is going away, tinkering is gaining the ability to make different colored pieces of jewelry.

5> Cartographers will be able to use blank scrolls as materials for mapmaking.

6> The repair feature will not at this time be added to any new craft skills. With this overhaul, craft skills are limited to repairing only item types that they can create. This means that blacksmiths will lose the ability to repair heavy crossbows.

We will carefully evaluate the repair feature for staves and wooden shields (by carpenters), leather armor (by tailors) and bows (bowyers). The largest concern (but not the sole one) is that the inability to repair items affects the design of the magic weapon loot tables. Magic bows are much more common than other magic weapon types, due to the fact that players can't repair bows.

7> New Craftables

New craftables are not at this time being added to the system, with the exception that the new tools mentioned here and elsewhere will be craftable by tinkers. Furthermore, no skill requirements are being changed, nor are any skill gain rates or material requirements.

8> Multi-Make

It's important to note that the "multi-make" feature will only work for items that can already be created in bulk. This includes:

Turning logs into boards
Turning wood into shafts
Making crossbow bolts and arrows
Cooking stackable raw meat

The section of the original "In Concept" post that indicated the inclusion of "Make 1", "Make 10", "Make 100", and "Make All" options will be altered. There will be no option to specify any quantities. Instead, for any "multi-make" item, the Information Window will indicate that the item is multi-make, and an attempt to make the item will attempt to make as many as possible using the materials available in the player's backpack.

Current skill gain behavior is being maintained with multi-make items. For example, you currently get larger skill gains in bowcraft/fletching when you make larger stacks of bolts and arrows at once. This behavior will remain unchanged.

9> Static Add-Ons

Static items are those features that are a built-in part of the world, stored in the statics.mul file used by the client and server. Currently, support for static items as crafting add-ons is sporadic; for example, blacksmithy can use static forges and anvils as well as dynamic ones, but cooking only supports the use of dynamic fire sources. With this change, static as well as dynamic add-ons will be supported for all crafts.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:53 PM

Auto House Refresh

From FYI:

Due to an issue with the latest patch, some players have experienced disappearing walls in their houses. This issue is client-side only, meaning that in most cases, other players are seeing the house intact, and the walls will still block other players from entering. However, this has made it difficult for some players to see their house doors and signs and, as a result, some players have been unable to refresh their houses. To see that players do not lose their homes because of this, all houses were given an automatic housing refresh this morning.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:49 AM

September 4, 2001

Client Patch 3.04m

From FYI:

We will be releasing a client patch on Tuesday, September 4th at approximately 10:00 AM. This patch is the same patch that was previously released and reverted on August 30th, and contains the following changes:
  • 2D gameplay window can now be resized without restarting the client
  • When in a party in 3D, the player's status bar will have heal/cure buttons
  • Improvements to the "Last Shard Used" button functionality in the 3D client
  • The character creation templates have been revamped
  • Book crash fixed
  • Players will not always be put in Britain when not using Advanced creation mode. They are put in a random starting city.
  • Players will no longer be asked if they wish to proceed with criminal acts while in Trammel.
  • New characters will now start with 80 stat points.
  • Many crashes and other bugs have been addressed in this patch.
The current versions should now be 3.0.4m (2D client) and 3.0.4m Build 74 (3D client).

NOTE: Windows 95 users that have not upgraded to Winsock 2 may receive the error missing winsock32.dll. To fix this problem, these users should download and install the new version of Winsock, which can be found here.

Also important to note: Users attempting to log in while using UO Assist may receive the error "The IGR time limit has been met." Until UO Assist is patched by Tugsoft (its parent company), players will need to log in without UO Assist.

If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
  • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
  • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
  • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.mcafee.com/myapps/vso/default.asp.
If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:28 PM

September 2, 2001

2D Illegal in Ilshenar

Freshly gleaned from the UO Boards:

Going to Ilshenar without the Third Dawn client is an exploit. It is illegal. Also, please remember that any alterations you make to your client to do so are in violation of the ToS.

Greywolfe
Online Community Moderator

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:04 AM

August 31, 2001

Veteran Rewards Update

From FYI:

Just as a quick update, we believe that the connectivity issue regarding the Veteran Rewards server has been resolved, and the fix is in the testing stages. We hope to be able to continue re-activating the system on the UO shards very soon, and will notify the players once the new schedule is determined.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 8:05 PM

August 30, 2001

Client Patch 3.0.4k

From FYI:

We will be releasing a client patch on Thursday, August 30th at approximately 1:30 pm CDT. This patch contains the following changes:
  • 2D Gameplay window can now be resized without restarting the client
  • When in a party in 3D, the player's status bar will have heal/cure buttons
  • Improvements to the "Last Shard Used" button functionality in the 3D client
  • The character creation templates have been revamped
  • Many crashes and other bugs have been addressed in this patch
  • Book crash fixed
  • Players are not always put in Britain when not using Advanced creation mode
  • They are put in a random starting city.
  • No notoriety queries in Trammel
  • Increase in maximum number of starting stat points
The current versions should now be 3.0.4k (2D client) and 3.0.4k Build 72 (3D client).If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
  • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.

  • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.

  • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.mcafee.com/myapps/vso/default.asp.
If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:00 PM

August 29, 2001

Veteran Rewards Schedule Update

Posted to FYI:

Since we began activating the Veteran Rewards system, we have been carefully monitoring the usage and performance of the Veteran Rewards hardware. The release has gone smoothly thus far, but we have found some connectivity issues with the rewards server. As more shards get rewards and the server is accessed more, these connectivity issues will result in packet loss, creating longer wait times for the rewards gump to appear, and for the reward selection to take place. If more shards are activated and the problem is left unfixed, it could eventually result in packet loss on the servers themselves, creating lag on the shards.

To resolve this problem before this happens, we will be temporarily halting the activation of Vet Rewards, and re-evaluating the current schedule for release. As previously scheduled, the system was successfully activated on the Pacific and Lake Superior shards today, but we were unable to activate them on Siege Perilous at this time. Shards that have previously had Vet Rewards activated will not lose the ability to choose those rewards, but the system will not be activated on any new shards until this is resolved.

The connectivity fix is receiving top priority, and we anticipate that this will be resolved soon. We will post a new schedule as soon as the problem has been resolved.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 6:44 PM

August 28, 2001

Power Hours Off Schedule

From FYI:

Normally, the first hour that each character is played on any given day allows that character a special possibility of some bonus skill point advancements, and this time is known to many players as the Power Hour. The Power Hour time frame should reset each day at midnight, related to the shards local time. Currently, however, all North American and European shards are incorrectly resetting their respective Power Hour times based on Midnight GMT. (Please note that Power Hours are still occurring properly for all shards, albeit off-schedule.)

We are working to resolve this situation. In the meanwhile, we ask that players who enjoy managing their time around the Power Hour schedule to please refer to the chart below. This chart shows when Power Hour is currently resetting on all shards.

East Coast Shards: 7:00pm EST
AOL Legends, Atlantic, Catskills, Chesapeake

Central Shards: 7:00pm EST
Great Lakes, Lake Superior

Siege Perilous Shard: 6:00pm CST

West Coast Shards: 4:00pm PST
Baja, Napa Valley, Pacific, Sonoma

European Shards: 12:00am GMT
Europa, Drachenfels

Asian Shards: 9:00am JST/KST
Hokuto, Yamato, Asuka, Wakoku, Izumo
Arirang, Balhae
Formosa

Oceana Shard: 12:00pm EDT

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:50 PM

Crafting System Overhaul

From In Concept:

Several updates and changes will occur that will eventually affect all of Ultima Onlines crafting systems. The goals of these changes include: creating a consistent interface for all crafting skills, allowing the player to understand a greater level of detail about his crafting activities, greater CPU efficiency, and adaptability & expandability as crafting systems are modified at later dates. The following skills will be affected by these changes:
  • Alchemy
  • Bowcraft/Fletching
  • Blacksmithy
  • Carpentry
  • Cartography
  • Inscription
  • Tailoring
  • Tinkering
The specifics are listed at the following site.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:04 PM

Sannio's Other Interests

Recently an interview centering around our old editor-turned-UO Community Coordinator (Nobody/Sannio/Keith) was posted to the following comic book site:

http://www.geocities.com/angelo_mortalli/

To skip straight to the interview, just go here:

http://www.geocities.com/angelo_mortalli/interviews/k_quinn/k_quinn.html

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:03 AM

August 27, 2001

UO Headed to Korean Market

From Digital Media Wire:

(Redwood City, Calif.) Game developer Electronic Arts announced on Monday that it will begin offering online games to the Korean market this fall. The company will first release "Ultima Online" and plans to offer "The Sims Online" and other titles. Redwood City-based Electronic Arts estimates that there are 25,000 online "game rooms" in Korea where users pay by the hour to play games.

http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/f_headline.cgi?day0/212390027&ticker=erts
http://www.ea.com

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:05 PM

August 25, 2001

Player Seer Program Update

Taken from the UO Seers Website:

This week marks the grand opening of the "UO Seers" Program. In just our first week we have managed to wade through the overwhelming number of applications and assign over 50 seers to the various Ultima Online shards. Currently we have been able to service all U.S. shards, all European Shards, and Oceania. At this time we do not have the resources to cover the Asian shards, but once we have firming established ourselves on these shards we will push full-force to expand our group to the Asian shards.

As many can imagine, setup is the most time consuming task with any organization. We too are having growing pains -- we are currently shifting people between shards to utilize our resources fully, we are fighting those people who wish us to fail, and we are awaiting the setup of our very own message board. Within the next few weeks, we will hopefully get these problems ironed out and we will be able to begin the fun part...creating events!

The website will be undergoing some expansion soon as well. One page we are working on is the second quest creation tutorial. This tutorial will be focused on managing the available resources to fit the plotline you have created. Another exciting page we are working on is the Quest Creation Tricks of the Trade. This page will include little known tricks that will dazzle and astonish your audiences! The page will also include all those juicy secrets that some of the veteran quest makers use. Finally, we have several other amazing pages still in the planning. There will be many changes happening over the next month.

Perhaps some of our friends out there may be wondering when the events will actually start! The plan is as follows: Within the next week or two there shall be preliminary events on most shards, events like scavenger hunts, archery contests, etc. Once the teams settle into their routines you will begin to see more storyline based quests, and multi-week events. This isn't to say that we will stop doing smaller quests, but we will also have the more major events! The scenarios WILL be integrated into some of our events, and hopefully we will be able to launch a multi-shard quest related to the next scenario. The important thing to remember is that we are dedicated to being a vital part of the shard communities and we hope to earn the trust and respect of our shards.
The current listing for Baja is currently available here and the new global messageboard for all Seer related activity can be found here.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:44 PM

August 24, 2001

Events Ideas From Sannio

Comments From the Team was updated with the following article written by Keith "Sannio" Quinn, on the UO.COM website. Here is a sampling:

Creating an Event: Development

Some of us have already created, or plan to try our hand at creating, events for other players in Ultima Online. This article is a checklist of sorts, collecting some information which might be as helpful for those of you who are just starting out, as those who are seasoned event creators. In fact, this is the first of a series of four articles: Development, Preparation, Management, and Aftermath.
For the entire length of the article please head to the following location.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:13 PM

Veteran Rewards Progress Update

The following news was posted to FYI today:

Due to widespread network issues, the Veteran Rewards server was unable to communicate with the Napa Valley shard for much of this afternoon. We have resolved this issue, and will be bringing the Napa Valley shard back up with the Rewards system active in just a few minutes.

Due to the high number of accounts simultaneously logging in and checking their account age, the server may become backed up, and the gump may take up to 5-10 minutes to appear. We anticipate this time will shorten considerably once the initial rush is past. Players are being asked to please wait patiently for the gump, rather than log in and out repeatedly.

IMPORTANT: Rewards are chosen per account, not per character, and are not transferable between shards once chosen. Do not accept a reward on the Napa Valley shard if you do not play on that shard regularly.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:42 PM

August 23, 2001

Veteran Rewards Update!

The following good news was posted to UO.COM earlier today:

After resolving a multitude of code and hardware-related issues, we will be activating the Veteran Rewards system on the Napa Valley shard on Thursday, August 23rd at 12:00 PM CDT. We will monitor the system closely on the Napa Valley shard the rest of this week, and will begin activating the Rewards system on the remaining shards once we are certain the system is operating as it should.

We're extremely grateful to our veteran players for the patience they have shown as we complete the Veteran Rewards system, and as a way to say thank you, we'd like to offer an extra reward choice to all players on all shards who are currently eligible for a Veteran Reward. This means that when the system is activated, one year veterans - who would previously have been allotted two rewards - will now be eligible for three. Two year veterans will receive four, and three year veterans will be eligible for five. All players will receive this extra reward choice once they reach their one-year status.

All rewards that have been chosen to date will be counted in the totals, meaning that players who have chosen more than their allotted share previously will not be eligible to choose new rewards, and will not receive the extra reward choice (since they already received extra rewards when the system was first released). Players who have chosen fewer rewards than what they are currently eligible for will be allowed to choose new rewards until they have reached the total number they are currently eligible to receive. This will apply until the player is eligible for a greater number of rewards than they have already chosen. For example, a three-year veteran is currently eligible to choose five rewards. If a player has already chosen seven, then that player will not be eligible to choose another reward until they have reached their six-year veteran status, when they would be eligible for eight total reward choices.

IMPORTANT: Rewards are allocated per account, not per character or per shard, so be sure to choose rewards on your regular playing shard, and not on a separate shard. Rewards will not be transferable between shards once chosen.

For more information on the Veteran Rewards system, as well as a detailed listing of the rewards that will be available for one, two, and three-year veterans, see http://update.uo.com/design_350.html. For questions regarding Veteran Rewards and determination of account age, please see the Knowledge Base at http://support.uo.com/, or mail support@uo.com.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:45 AM

August 21, 2001

Spell Regeant Change

A small addition was made to the "Latest Update" article entitled "Combat Damage Changes". To sum it up, regeant use has changed on the following four spells:

- Magic Arrow: 1 Sulfurous Ash
- Fireball: 1 Black Pearl
- Lightning: 1 Mandrake Root, 1 Sulfurous Ash
- Explosion: 1 Bloodmoss, 1 Mandrake Root

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 11:56 PM

Baja Citizen Interviewed at Celebrity Chat

Recently Baja Citizen 'Markee Dragon' was interviewed at the UO Celebrity Chat, hosted by the UO Stratics Team. You can read the transcript of the interview here and comment.

Also, Markee's newssite, www.markeedragon.com announced the following new addition to their site:

I'm sure that everyone at one time or another has wanted to buy, sell or trade something in the game but you really didn't know what the item was worth. Or better yet you want to make sure that you are not being scammed. Well now I introduce to you The UO Items Database. We have been slaving over this database for the past few months entering items and estimating their value. With over 800 items currently listed it's a great resource for anything that can be bought, sold or traded.

Since the Database is still new there are still items to be added. We currently list everything from Animals to Food to Weapons and Armor with much more stuff to come. Please join us for the grand opening.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:37 PM

August 20, 2001

Avalon PvP Tournament Results (Felucca)

The results from the Avalon PvP Tournament are in, and the following victors have been announced:

Posted by Thellaren at 2:38 PM

Sannio Promises to Look Into Blocked Ship Placement

From the Turbulent Waters Site:

One of the great unsolved mysteries of last year was the sudden and unexplained blocking of ship placement on the lake north of the Shrine of Justice. Shortly before housing was opened on the Trammel facet in the summer of 2000, players found that they could no longer place ships on that lake. This came as quite a shock to the lucky few homeowners on the island in the center of the lake, who now found the recall spell as the only way of reaching their homes.

Repeated attempts to get an answer from OSI failed, and players were left to make their own theories. Some speculated that it was an unintended side-effect of ship placement being blocked in dungeons, while others thought it a part of the crackdown by frustrated GMs weary of calls for help by folks stranded on the island.

It was brought up again by my friend Phoenix, who has a house on that island, and UO Community Coordinator Sannio replied:

You know, the change to that island's accessibility is something I've wondered about myself. I'll see if I can't look into that soon. (I don't know what can be done about it, but hopefully we'll at least know more about why it happened.)

There's good fishing on that lake, so let's hope Sannio's quest for answers not only gets an explanation, but perhaps leads to the return of sailing on that serene lake.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:32 AM

Bottled Water Deemed Legal

From the Turbulent Waters site:

In a question about its legality made on the UO.com In-Game Support message board, Player Relations Training Lead Canyon (I think that means the Leader of the Gamemasters) said the following about player-made bottled water:

It's legal to make, sell, own and trade. Is it still possible to make them?

The answer is yes, it still is possible to make them (see the Secrets of the Sea section of this site). For some time, players have been able to take any ordinary bottled item out to sea, find a certain kind of water tile, and use the tile to convert the bottle of ale, cider, wine, liquor, or pink champagne into a bottle of water.

Occasionally players attempt to fool unsuspecting buyers into thinking that bottled water is a rarity when in fact anyone can make them. In truth, the only time such an item might be worth any more than the price of the bottle would be if one used a pink champagne bottle to make it. Nonetheless, it is good to see a clear statement on this item from OSI.

Posted by Thellaren at 1:25 AM

August 18, 2001

Faction Report!!

Well it seems summer is taking its toll on factions. With many people gone on vacation or taking their college finals (Archangel), factions haven't enjoyed the 20 vs 20 or 30 vs 30 fights it once enjoyed. This week has been pretty slow with a minimum number of large raids and only a few people guarding sigils. After a week of hit and runs from Minax, TB and SL, COM managed to secure 5 towns while 3 sigils are still up for grabs (Brit, Minoc and Yew). Also, COM exercised their power over the cities, creating turrets in front of their stronghold as well as in front of TB's HQ, making movement of sigils very difficult.

In other news:

LOD's recent departure from Minax to go Chaos left many veteran PVPers heading over to Minax. Some felt that the enticement of COM had left and their actions would even the playing field as Minax has not been a major force in the battle for the cities lately. Also SL have suffered a severe lack of leadership as Archangel the guildmaster of M&D and leader of the Shadowlords has been taking finals in RL and unable to contribute his great leadership ability these last 2 weeks. TB has also felt the pinch of summer and often lacked the defensive force to guard 24 hours around the clock (Most factions aren't able to set up a 24 hour watch at this time). This has resulted in the loss of their sigils after the hard fought raids to obtain them.

Until next week may your horses live long and your traps give lots of silver!

Pat Factor
The #1 Stunna
M&D

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:31 PM

August 17, 2001

Skara Brae Street Market Faire (Trammel)

The following announcement was seen on the Dark Warden's Board:

Hail All,

Queen Shieba's Alliance, a guild known for their dedication the Crafting Arts, has decided to extend their crafters skills to those in need and sell their products in the town of Skara Brae. We will be doing this on Sunday, August 19th, and have committed to being there at least from 5:00-7:00(PST) server time.

This Street market faire is most certainly open to all, to either buy or sell. Our interests though, are to stress fun had by all and promote our role playing guilds. We will be very much more discreet than the selling that is done at the West Britain Bank. We would like to focus on crafted goods for selling, but would certainly allow people to sell other things as well . So prepare for a good amount of trade and fun.

~Dante~
~Lord High Chancellor~
~Ambassador of Queen Shieba~

Posted by Thellaren at 11:06 AM

August 16, 2001

Baja Targeted First With Combat Changes

The following was found on the FYI Section of the UO Offical Website:

We have published the changes and fixes listed in Testing for Next Update to the Baja shard. These changes are now currently active.

We will monitor the Baja shard over the remainder of the week and weekend, and barring any issues, will announce a publish schedule for the remaining shards as soon as we have a target date.
Another update was found shortly thereafter:
A few additions were made to Testing for Next Update regarding the Combat Changes and Tutorial/Haven items previously announced. These changes are presently active on the Baja shard. As stated earlier, we will be closely monitoring Baja and will announce a release schedule for the remaining shards as it is determined.

The changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

Posted by Thellaren at 9:20 PM

EVENT: PvP Tournament this Saturday! (Trammel)

The following notice was found posted to the UO Stratics Baja Board:

Greetings. A good friend of mine, Night Stallion, as his final act before leaving UO, will be sponsoring a PvP tournament in Trammel! Valuable rares will be amounst the prizes, the Grand Prize being a LARGE MARBLE home on Trammel.

The tournament will be held at The Discordian Society's Tower near the Brit/Yew/Skara crossroads. Registration will begin at 4pm PDT and end at 5pm. No new registrations after 5pm. Hopefully we will begin the fighting around 5:30pm

You will be required to temporarily resign from your current guild and be added to the tournament guild stone to participate. Due to limitations of the system, Factioned players will NOT be able to participate because they cannot be added to the tournament guild stone.

The tournament will be divided into 3 seperate categories:

1. Melee only. No magery allowed.
2. Non-melee. No melee weapons.
3. All goes. Anything allowed.

Each category will receive a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prize. The 1st place winners out of each category will compete in best out of three fight for the GRAND PRIZE! The final fighting will be 'Anything allowed.'

The tournament will be held on top of a LARGE TOWER. Using hiding, invisibility, or leaving the top of the tower during your match will be considered a forfeit. So practice up on your TOWER TOP fighting technique.

Bandaids and potions are permitted. Magic weaponry and armor is not permitted, but you may use jewelery (stat modifier magic) and clothing. ABSOLUTELY NO LOOTING WILL BE PERMITTED! Anyone caught looting an opponent will be immediately disqualified.

Gating from Britain (East and West banks) will begin around 4pm. The length of the tournament entirely depends on the turnout. Be prepared to hang around and have a good time, with a Grand Prize like that, there's probably going to be a lot of contestants. Good luck and see you there!

Also, no pets will be permitted. Horses and other mounts are OK, but stay on your pet at all times (when possible) to minimize lag for others.

Jasmine S

Posted by Thellaren at 3:03 PM

PvP Tournament in Avalon this Sunday (Felucca)

Hail & well met! The City of Avalon will be holding a PvP Tournament Sunday, August 19th, pitting Sosaria's greatest warriors in a fight to the death in Feluccias far reaches. All fighters of each class will enter the ring and only one will leave alive. There will be 6 classes with a check for 200k going to each class winner.

The classes of fighting will be as follows:

1. Swords/Fencing
2. Mace
3. Axe
4. Magery
5. Archery
6. Taming

The rules are as follows:

All fighters must flag when entering the fighting ring. There is a maximum of 10 bandages and five of each pot (don't want it to last all day). Tamers will be limited to rideable mounts, due to room constraints. DP'd weapons, magic weapons, magic armor & looting are allowed. No contestant will be rezzed until the winner of his or her respective class is determined.

This event will be at held at the Avalon Events Tower (123 29N 26 51E) on Sunday, August 19th at 3pm EST, 12 PDT. So come one come all & find out who the greatest warriors in the lands are!!!!! To find our city, please consult the maps found at the following location: http://www.avaloncity.org

Katie of Avalon

Posted by Thellaren at 12:19 AM

Wedding on Baja, Tera Star Room! (Trammel)

A reminder of the following event was found posted to the Golden Brew Board:



Reception at the Lions den Afterwords. Gifts Welcome. Volunteers to help gate and setup for the reception are welcome also. Please contact me at mimi721@hotmail.com if you have any questions.

Morgana

Posted by Thellaren at 12:12 AM

August 15, 2001

In Development: Treasure Map Changes

Sannio (Online Community Coordinator, UO) recently posted the following new piece to the official UO Development Board:

Many of you may have already read or know about some changes to Treasure Maps that are in development (and you can read about them here).

I wanted to point out I left out one item on the list of changes, but which is now actually listed, as follows:

"It will now be possible for players to reach 100.0 in cartography through creating world maps as well as through decoding treasure maps (previously, a player could only reach a skill of 98.5 through creating world maps)."

Bon cartographie!

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 10:03 PM

House Decorating & Wedding Services!

Lady Bronwyn of Baja now offers services in House Decorating and Wedding Preparation. Her new brochure had this to say:

Myself and various members of CwR have taken a great delight in decorating. Often times, Apollo in particular, they will give me an idea and I see what I can do with it. I also study other homes and websites and often try to do something unique with it. This isn't always easy, but the finished project is always well worth it. There are many many creative people in our online community and my hat goes off to them.

As for weddings, I think they are wonderful in game. I myself have had two very beautiful weddings. It was such a joyful experience. I can distinctly remember how nervous I was! Its a great way to create allies, friendship and love.


Get your copy of her colorful brochure by touching the picture above.

Posted by Thellaren at 9:49 PM

Treasure Map Changes (In Development)

The following proposed changes to treasure maps were listed on the Development section of the Official UO Boards:

Several updates and changes will occur for treasure maps. The specifics are listed below:

A label will identify the level of the treasure map:
  • a youthful treasure map level 0 (Ed: new level only for Haveneers)
  • a plainly drawn treasure map level 1
  • an expertly drawn treasure map level 2
  • an adeptly drawn treasure map level 3
  • a cleverly drawn treasure map level 4
  • a deviously drawn treasure map level 5
An undecoded treasure map will still have the addition of tatteredplus one of the above notationsuntil being decoded.

A treasure map will be able to be used by those who do not own it, providing that they have enough cartography to decode it.

Posted by Thellaren at 1:53 AM

Further Barkeep Tidbits

Gromm recently posted three more pieces of information about the 'Barkeep' tool to the UO Boards:

1) How much will these guys/gals cost?
Right now we're looking at around 5,000 gold.

2) Do they require a daily fee to maintain or is it a one time fee
and they wll stay till you dismiss them?

One time fee and they will stay till you dismiss them. Since the barkeep doesn't make or collect money for you there is no upkeep or time limit.

3) is there a limit on how many can be in a house, besides floor space?
2 per house.

Posted by Thellaren at 1:43 AM

Reminder to Update UO Account Information

Sannio (Online Community Coordinator, UO) posted the following here:

Could everyone please take a few moments and update your UO Account contact information? I'll wait while you go do that. Here's a link to the "Modify Existing Account" area of the Account Management section.
.
.
.
Hm, I can see most of you haven't gone and made those updates. You're holding the rest of us up. Go at least update your e-mail address.
.
.
.
Tch. Okay, let me explain the problem, then.

Once in a while people have troubles with their message board accounts, and when I say "once in a while," I really mean I get a handful of password requests and such several times per day, all from different people.

Now, the help requests that come into boardhelp@uo.com are mostly based on legitimate problems, and I have no issues with helping people out who really need help. But helping them, helping you, often requires I verify your information, and a big part of that is matching up your correct e-mails.

But the problem there is, from what I can tell, most of you *don't* update your e-mail information.

GAH! *begins pulling out what's left of his hair*

Right now it'll take a couple of days to process some of these "boardhelp@uo.com" requests, but I'm worried that, soon, that may turn into a week or more.

Please help me out here. Give me some more time to read and reply on the boards. Go update your UO Account Information here. Thanks.

=========
Sannio
Online Community Coordinator, UO
Origin Systems

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:37 AM

August 14, 2001

Blade Spirits Functioning on Ship Decks Once Again

From the Turbulent Waters site:

In what must surely be an unintended change, the blade spirit spell is once again able to be cast onto the deck of a ship, giving those who fight at sea a powerful weapon useful for interrupting enemy spellcasting and generally causing chaos for their foes. The spell was mysteriously removed from ship combat nearly three years ago and may have returned as a side effect of recent changes to the spell made for other reasons.

It is most likely that this changed in the July 24th patch which had the following intended effect on the spell, according to the official OSI site:

Bladespirits and Energy Vortex spells have been adjusted to be less processor intensive. This gives a server-side performance increase.

Bladespirits no longer display a paperdoll when double-clicked.

Some of the other effects of these changes were the removal of the ability of the blade spirit to poison its victim, and what is considered by some to be a lowering of its overall power and effectiveness by many who use them to fight monsters.The energy vortex spell is still unable to be cast onto a ship.

My thanks to Jazon, Guildmaster of the Pirates of Scoundrel's Cove on Atlantic,for pointing out this recent change. I had stopped testing blade spirits on ships long ago, having given up hope that they would ever work again. Whether or not the return of blade spirits to ship combat was intentional is unknown, as is whether or not it will remain possible to cast them onto a ship deck. For the time being, however, pirates able to cast 5th circle spells have a powerful new weapon to use.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 4:44 PM

Cleanup Britannia Campaign

From Crossroads:

In an effort to cleanup the damaged terrain and leftover junk in our world, the Crossroads of Britannia presents the Cleanup Britannia Campaign. We hope that you, the players will send in the locations that you think should be cleaned up, and we will provide this listing for the UO Live Team to use as reference when performing their maintenane duties. If you would like to submit locations, please post a message on the Dev Board or send email to us. Put 'Cleanup Britannia' in the subject line and list the following:

  • Your Name
  • Shard
  • Facet (Tram, Fel, Ilsh)
  • Sextant Coords
  • Description of the Mess (Emphasis on blocked locations and multiple doors)
  • Date & Time Recorded
Many thanks to Lothar of Catskills for sparking this idea with his post on the Dev Board, and for sending in the first listings. Special recognition goes to Nick Seafort at the Daily Herald for his efforts to cleanup map errors on Great Lakes.

Heather

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 4:01 PM

Client Patch Set for Today

Pat Factor sent in the following news from OSI:

We will be releasing a client patch on Tuesday, August 14th, at approximately 2:00 pm CDT. For a detailed list of changes that will be included in this update, see http://update.uo.com/design_359.html. These changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the patch has been released.

The current versions should now be 3.0.3a (2D client) and 3.0.3a Build 69 (3D client).

Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.
Changes will be as follows:
3D CLIENT
  • Paperdoll synch bugs from previous patch should be resolved.
  • Containers should work properly:
    • Relative locations of objects should match between 2D and 3D
    • Container pics on 3D resizable container gumps should hue to match item.
    • Bug where tall items might cause the contents of a container to vanish should be fixed, as should the crash that might occur in these incidents.

  • The following have been converted from 2D sprites to 3D models:
    • Rabbits
    • Snakes
    • Bullfrogs
    • Small Birds
    • Large Birds
    • Town & Sewer Rats

  • Some scenario models are also in this release.
  • Some creatures will now hue in the Third Dawn client:
    • Cats
    • Dogs
    • Ostards
    • Small Birds
2D CLIENT

  • Interface art needed for the event scenario is included in the 2D patch.
BOTH CLIENTS
  • Some problems with arm/disarm macros have been resolved.
  • Books and Bulletin boards now support Unicode characters.
  • Macros now support Unicode
  • Lots of localization file changes.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:27 PM

The Unofficial UO Seers Program Welcomes You!

Krosis sent out the following regarding their new UO Seer program, a project run by and for the players:

The Unofficial "UO Seers" Program Welcomes You!

Announcing the one-and-only multi-shard "UO Seers" Program. Have you always wanted to try your hand as a Guy (or Gal) in Green (a.k.a. a Seer)? Well here is your chance! The "UO Seers" Program is looking for dedicated individuals to create, assist, and perform quests on all Ultima Shards. We have no special powers, we have no robes, we have no ties to OSI, but we have what is most important: creativity, ingenuity, and ambition.

Maybe you have little free time or don't want to make any more commitments? No problem, you can also apply to be a Troubadour and merely assist in a few quests around the realm.

But that's not all! We also provide resources for quest creation and role-playing. Perhaps you don't know where to start when it comes to creating that masterful story line; come to our site! Perhaps you want to learn a bit more about role-playing; come to our site!

But wait! Our most valued service is that we work *with* your shard to help your communities design and perform their own quests. We feel that building a solid shard community is just as important as running events; and by working with you we can create those necessary ties, forming a great foundation.

We are a new group and as we grow, we hope to help each of your shards grow as well! Come visit our website today at http://uoseers.tripod.com or http://members.tripod.com/uoseers/index.htm to apply and/or find out more information!

Let the games begin!

--Krosis,
"UO Seers" Program

Posted by Ursula at 11:56 AM

August 13, 2001

Questions Needed for Interview

From Player2Player.Net:

Greetings once again!

We are currently trying to assemble a list of questions to present to OSI that mainly focus on the state of Felucca at the present time. Questions involving ANY aspect of player towns will be welcome as well. Once we have a suitable list of GOOD questions, we will be presenting them to a member of the UO Live Dev Team in an interview type setting. So if you have a good question concerning some nature of the problems facing Felucca right now, please send them in or post them on our board. Once a list has been finalized we will post it here. And then once the interview has been completed we will post that as well.

We currently don't have a specific time or date for this interview yet. I'll post here, with that information, just as soon as the time arrangements have been made.

Got a question? Then let us know! Email us at: staff@player2player.net

Korin the Scribe

Posted by Thellaren at 1:48 AM

August 11, 2001

Community Building Site

The Freeborn Press would like to bring the readers attention to a new site that was launched earlier yesterday. Here are the details:

Player2Player.Net Mission Statement

What we are seeking to do here is provide a place for player communities to discuss issues that they feel are important and to develop and discuss possible solutions. In short it's a place to talk.

It is our hope that in providing a centralized place for discussion, that we can show those at OSI just how important player input should be within the game. Not everyone with a good idea holds a Masters in Game Design and Programming. Remember you CAN make a difference. All you have to do is try.
To get involved with the community discussion or to read articles such as 'Repopulating Felucca' or 'Townstone Thoughts' ,just proceed to the aforementioned location.

Posted by Thellaren at 12:55 AM

August 10, 2001

Changes to Animal Lore

New to In Concept:

** Note ** This idea is currently in a "concept" phase, meaning we want to get feedback on it. However please understand that this idea may change to be quite different from this proposal when or if it becomes finalized. Also note that this proposal might not get put in at all, depending on factors in the design process as well as the feedback we get from players. As more information becomes available about this concept idea, the update pages will become updated.

Animal Lore skill will be updated as a stand-alone skill, to accommodate localization issues and player- and Dev Team-driven suggested changes. This update does not include any changes where Animal Lore coordinates with any other skill.

Players will use the Animal Lore and then target any animal to obtain two random items of information about that animal, in addition to still discovering the current Loyalty level of an animal (tamed pets, only). Players may need to use Animal Lore on a given animal more than once to learn all the possible available information on that animal. The following lists all possible information that may be discovered with the Animal Lore skill:

Information about its training level, for tamable animals:
  • It has only just begun its combat training
  • It is somewhat trained in the art of war
  • It appears fairly trained in the ways of combat
  • It has excellent combat training
  • It has superior combat training
  • It has nearly learned all there is in the ways of combat
  • It has mastered the art of war
  • It has learned all there is to the art of war
Information about its past owners, for tamable animals:
  • It appears to have known only one master in its life
  • It seems to have known two masters in its life
  • It appears annoyed at having known three masters
  • It appears angry to have known four masters
  • It appears infuriated to have known five masters
  • It is weary of human companionship
Information about its diet:
  • You sense that it likes to eat grass
  • You sense that it would delight in fruit for a meal
  • You sense that it likes to eat hay
  • This creature likes to eat grains
  • This creature devours meat for its meals
  • This creature will eat fish
  • This creature will eat various crops
  • You cant think of anything you could feed it (Note: some pets dont eat)
Information about its current level of hunger:
  • It looks like its starving
  • It looks like its near-starving
  • It looks pretty hungry
  • It looks moderately well-fed
  • It looks well-fed
  • It looks plump
  • It looks like it gets plenty to eat
  • It looks replete, as if it has just eaten
Information about its natural resources (things you can get off of the animal):
  • You could use this creature for its wool
  • It does well at carrying heavy loads
  • If this creature were dead, you could use its hides
  • You could slaughter it for meat
  • It is sometimes used for its wood

Posted by Thellaren at 9:38 PM

Barkeep Phrase Totals

The Freeborn Press recently sent out the following question to Gromm, UO's Designer of Ongoing Content:

How many separate key phrases will a 'barkeep' be able to process and offer comments on?
The answer came back today as such:
The barkeep will have the three you saw in the pictures of the message gump and an additional one that is triggered by "tipping" the barkeep with gold. So that's 4 total phrases you can enter into a barkeep. 3 with keyword triggers and one with tips.

Posted by Thellaren at 2:24 AM

Changes to General Testing

New to General Testing:

3D CLIENT
  • Paperdoll synch bugs from previous patch should be resolved.
  • Containers should work properly:
    • Relative locations of objects should match between 2D and 3D
    • Container pics on 3D resizable container gumps should hue to match item.
    • Bug where tall items might cause the contents of a container to vanish should be fixed, as should the crash that might occur in these incidents.

  • The following have been converted from 2D sprites to 3D models:
    • Rabbits
    • Snakes
    • Bullfrogs
    • Small Birds
    • Large Birds
    • Town & Sewer Rats

  • Some scenario models are also in this release.
  • Some creatures will now hue in the Third Dawn client:
    • Cats
    • Dogs
    • Ostards
    • Small Birds
2D CLIENT

  • Interface art needed for the event scenario is included in the 2D patch.
BOTH CLIENTS
  • Some problems with arm/disarm macros have been resolved.
  • Books and Bulletin boards now support Unicode characters.
  • Macros now support Unicode
  • Lots of localization file changes.

Posted by Thellaren at 2:16 AM

August 9, 2001

Artificial Intelligence and Monsters

Calandryll, UO's Designer of Ongoing Content released the newest Comments From The Team:

The dictionary defines artificial intelligence as: "The ability of a computer or other machine to perform those activities that are normally thought to require intelligence." In some industries, artificial intelligence could allow machines to perform complex and/or dangerous tasks, thus saving humans the risk or trouble of doing such tasks. But what does AI really mean when we are talking about massively multiplayer monsters?

First, I think it's important that we define what the purpose of AI is for massively multiplayer gaming and, more specifically, for the monsters in the games. Is the purpose of today's gaming AI to replicate human thought? Not really. The above definition is nice, but it doesn't really apply to what we do. Some might say that AI is needed to make monsters more challenging. To me, that's not taking it far enough. For instance, I could make a new monster that has 25,000 hit points, 102AR, 500.0 magic resist, is immune to poison, and does 99 points of damage with a ranged weapon that hits 100% of the time. That monster would certainly be challenging to kill, but there's no artificial intelligence in the monster beyond its ability to target and attack players. It's not a "fun" monster.

And that to me is what AI in these games is really about...making monsters fun. That may sound rather simplistic, but sometimes the simplest explanation is the most elegant. If a monster is not fun to fight, nobody is going to consider it a successful monster design, regardless of how challenging it may be. Fun does not always equal challenging and, more importantly, many players do not want monsters that are as intelligent as players...otherwise, why not just fight players? They want monsters that are fun. Sometimes a fun monster can be something that reacts to your actions, or perhaps it works together with other monsters of its kind to defeat its enemies. Whatever its abilities, if the monster isn't fun, then all of the artificial intelligence in the world is meaningless.

To illustrate the kind of AI I am talking about, I'll give you the example of the savage shaman. Each time a savage shaman is hit, she has a chance to initiate a tribal dance. If she initiates the dance, she searches the area for other savage shamans. If she finds three or more savage shamans within a certain radius, the shaman and all those near her begin to dance. When they finish the dance, the savages cast a powerful group spell that can cause harm to players or even heal all savages near the casters. Needless to say, letting them cast these spells could spell doom for would-be adventurers. But, if you are able to slay enough shamans before they finish their dance, then you can interrupt the spell before it is cast. Or, you can run away from the savages and if you escape the spells' range, avoid the damage of the spell. This kind of AI causes you to react differently than you normally would, without creating undue challenge, and gives you choices for how to react. It also has visual cues, letting you know something is about to happen and giving you time (although not much...youve got to think fast!) to decide what to do. Do you try to kill the shamans before they finish dancing? Or do you run away, hoping you can escape before they finish? Or perhaps you just continue fighting, preparing for the spell, knowing that your friends can handle its effects. If savage shamans were nothing more than white hued humans that cast spells they'd be no different, for all intents and purposes, than evil mages, orc mages, or any of the other spell casting monsters with similar stats. It's not their look that separates them from the other monsters in UO...it's what they do.

Of course, none of this takes into account the other reason players like to fight monsters...loot. No matter how cool a monster is, if the reward is poor, people will be less likely to interact with it and hence, the monster will not be considered a success. But how often can we keep adding the typical 100-250 gold and a 10% chance of some rare new item on every new monster? No, there has to be other kinds of rewards to engage players with new monsters. Perhaps fighting these monsters is necessary to achieve some part of a scenario, like the savages in the previous scenario. Or maybe, the monster isn't aggressive at all, but rather, its actions give you evidence (like the frightened orc) of changes in the world. New ideas of intangible rewards, like titles or even abilities unavailable through normal game-play, should be explored.

I don't believe that we, as designers, have even scratched the surface of monster design with massively multi-player games. Aside from the way they look, too many monsters are nothing more than different variations of hit points, damage, and armor values. The team for Ultima Online is going to be trying out some new things over the coming months to help change that. Hopefully we'll present you with some new, exciting monsters...and of course, some fun.

Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
Designer, Ongoing Content

Posted by Thellaren at 12:19 AM

August 8, 2001

Unused Character Purge

Recently posted to the UO Boards:

Character data takes up a great deal of space on the servers. Many players have multiple characters that they do not play (characters made for one-time events, made during their regular shard downtime, etc.). Purging characters that are not being used will result in shorter backups, decreasing shard down time and increasing overall performance.

Design
Characters are deleted after three months unless:
The character has over 75 total stat points. All characters that are over 75 stat points will not be purged by this system.
Characters at or below 75 total stat points will need to be "refreshed". Refreshing is defined as logging a character in and then logging out. Logging in a character will reset the three month timer.

Warnings
In order to warn players, shards on the Shard Selection screen will appear in a different color when characters on that shard are scheduled for a purge. Character names in the login list will then appear in the same color if they have not been logged-in for over 2 months. This will serve as a reminder and also warn the player in case a time-warp results in the "refreshing" of a character not saving.

In addition, players will be e-mailed a warning before any character is purged. It is very important that all players keep their e-mail address updated in the Account Management section of the Ultima Online website.

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 10:00 PM

Questions About Barkeeps

Gromm (UO Designer, Ongoing Content) has been keeping UO Board regulars updated with the most current questions about the Barkeep tool:

How many characters are you able to write in as an answer?
As many as you can fit on one line of typed text.

Can you customize the food menu?
No, it's preset. It has most of the food and drink items an innkeeper has with the exception of a few things players make with the cooking skill.

Are foreign letters (long lives the localization - lol) allowed to use there?
The barkeep is programmed to be usable with any language set. This will mean that if you use an English client and you encounter a barkeep that has been filled with Korean characters you may not be able to enteract.

Do the different titles come with a custom costume for the barkeep?
No, the barkeep will spawn with a standard outfit. After that you control when he changes outfits, exactly like the vendor customization menu.

Where is the house your barkeep is guarding? :)
On my standalone computer I use for coding. First one there can have it. :D

Also, Jahova, the barkeep will not stable animals. We currently have no plans to create a player owned stablemaster.
He also added the following:
Well the barkeeps will have the scenario news, just like the town criers did. That will be localized.

Otherwise, any player entered messages wil be language specific. A keyword entered in Japanese characters will have to be said in Japanese characters to get a response

Posted by Thellaren at 12:52 AM

August 7, 2001

Barkeep Preview

Gromm posted the following on the UO.COM Scenario Forum:

We know you like to see the new stuff early!

The barkeep is currently in QA testing and is still considered to be in the Alpha stage so these are subject to change.

Enjoy! :D


Posted by Thellaren at 3:38 PM

August 6, 2001

Hearts of Baja

Posted to the new Hearts of Baja website:

Looking for the love of your UO life? A new hunting companion? Or maybe just someone to hang around Brit bank with? We are here to help!

Introducing the Hearts of Baja website. We offer the Baja community a lighthearted matchmaking site where you can send us your information and our staff will match you up expertly and confidentially. We also have an easy to use message board forum where you can fill out the requested information and make public your match criteria to broaden your chances of finding that special someone.

A special welcome from shard liaison, Victorias Secret:

Hello and welcome everyone to Hearts of Baja :-) I play a well established character by the name of Victorias Secret on the Baja shard of Ultima Online and I am here to offer a valuable tip for those interested in trying the Hearts of Baja matchmaking services. *curls up in a plush throne dyed signature VS pink* Now, as long as I have been playing UO, I've come to learn that one of the hardest aspects of gameplay has been to find amongst the many that special someone in the game whom you would be willing to give your heart to.

To those even remotely interested in UO love, the search seems pretty intimidating. Not everyone is looking for love, not everyone has that special quality that you know you need, not everyone is in your age group/plays as often as you do/has that easygoing personality to see you through those tense standoffs at the Daemon Temple :-) But I digress.

Thisservice presents you with the chance to share your secret yearnings for that elusive "other", that dream UO companion. So go ahead, the bola is in your court! Take advantage of the limitless possibilities Hearts of Baja offers.

After all, UO is a game of the heart and mind, and the elements of fun within will always be at your fingertips accessible lock and key by YOUR imagination only! With all that said, don't forget to have fun and may love's fortune smile upon thee and thine :-)

Love,

Victoria's Secret

Posted by Thellaren at 9:54 PM

Comments from Vex: Ultima Online's Economy

New to Comments From the Team:

I'd like to take a moment or five to talk about UOs economy in a big-picture sort of way. The things I am writing about here are basically my thoughts and opinions as a game designer. Nothing written here is to be construed in any way as plans for future development on UO. My intent is to give you a little insight into my thought processes on the subject.

Most players will agree that, while UOs economy in some respects works amazingly well, it also has some downsides. For example, take the housing trade. It has been a roaring success despite early on lack of support for secure house trading. Houses are bought, sold, and auctioned outside the game. UOs virtual real-estate market reflects a real one in many ways. Some properties are at premium value and others are more modestly priced. Location, size, and other factors influence the market, which is entirely driven by its participants.

But, in other respects, like player-NPC trading, the system is completely controlled by the game engine. Prices for commodities are mostly fixed, somewhat limiting dynamic supply and demand-based economics. Furthermore, there is no guarantee of supply of a needed item (like spell reagents), making it somewhat inconvenient at times for players to get the things they need right away. It is clear that the system could be improved and it is our job, as game designers, to create workable win-win solutions.

So, what is the basis for the imperfections in UOs virtual economy? The answer lies in classic design approaches rooted in single-player games. Classic single-player design approach dictates a totally designed economic situation. It makes perfect sense in the context of a single-player game. Almost universally, prices and monster loot are fixed in single-player RPGs. Designers have goals in mind. In a single player RPG, the "economy" designed into it isn't an economy (in this context) at all. Rather, it is a subgame built into the whole. Game designers predetermine monster loot and shop item costs. Its whole purpose is to act as a barrier to overcome in order to win the game. Usually, by the end of such a game, the main character has more money than he can use. The economic subgame has been beaten. There is no point in simulating a supply and demand economy in this kind of game. It would just be a bunch of trees falling in a forest with nobody around to hear, while the player is busily slaughtering demons in the underworld.

Unfortunately, the same approach is almost universally used in multiplayer games as well. Better equipment costs more money, and higher-level monsters drop more. In the early game, a player might have to play for an hour to collect up a few hundred units of currency, but in the late game the money might be rolling in ten or a hundred times as fast. The only problem is, in a multiplayer game you have "lowbies" and "ubers" mixing it up together. One veteran player giving away the loot from one short hunting trip to a new player will totally blow the curve for the new player. One thousand gold coins might mean five minutes of play to a veteran, but five hours to a newbie. This illuminates a basic flaw of the multiplayer game's economy. It's true that in the real world, one hour of an all-star basketball players time might be worth thousands of hours of an average Joe's. The only difference is, in a multiplayer game, all players can reach that all-star level of virtual income just by progressing through the game. If everybody in the world got multimillion dollar contracts to do their jobs, then the dollar would be next to worthless.

How could it be designed better? Thats a tough one, for sure. The casual gamer probably doesnt want to spend much time shopping. Being on a limited time budget, this type of player wants to equip and go. Many players would probably prefer fixed prices, considering that prices are generally stable in the real world and theyre used to fixed prices in single-player games. Merchants would prefer to see real supply and demand determine prices, finding the dynamics of a reality-based economy enjoyable. Virtual craftsmen want to be guaranteed a demand for their services. With so many different playstyles to accommodate, a perfect solution will be difficult indeed to find.

I'm going to leave this article at that, for now. For my next few Comments from the Team articles, I intend to delve deeper into this same subject. Eventually, I'll get around to exploring some possible solutions, and I look forward to discussing this subject at our upcoming Online Worlds Fanfest.

Michael Vex Moore
Designer, UO Live

Posted by Thellaren at 9:45 PM

New Bug Delays Vet Rewards

New to FYI:

Due to a new bug just found which allows players to collect more Vet Rewards (http://update.uo.com/design_350.html) than they should, the re-implementation of the Vet Rewards program is being delayed. We regret having to extend the schedule, but this bug, which involves the use of a third-party program, would negate the benefits of the entire system if left unfixed. We believe we have solved the issue, and the system is now being retested, but we do not yet have an estimated date as to its release. We will update the players as soon as we have more information, and we apologize for this necessary delay.

Posted by Thellaren at 9:37 PM

Illegal Purple-Hued Sigil Items

New on FYI:

In a strengthened stance against exploits, and due to the high number of support calls generated, we are now taking a stronger stand on illegal purple-hued sigil items. As of today, any players found selling these items, either in-game or out-of-game, will receive an automatic 72-hour suspension from Ultima Online, a final warning on their account, and the items will be deleted. Any accounts that have already been placed under final warning will be terminated.

Players with these items already in their possession should note that these items are illegal, and should dispose of them through the nearest waste receptacle, or place them in a backpack and hand them off to an NPC Cobbler to be disposed of. Any remaining items that were dyed through the use of an exploit will very likely be re-hued in the future.

Anything that can be dyed through use of a normal dye tub, including clothing, metal kite shields, and all footwear (excluding sandals) can be hued this shade legally. If an item is purple, and cannot be dyed through the use of a normal dye tub, it is a result of the sigil exploit, and should be disposed of immediately. It is vital that we enforce a NO TOLERANCE rule against exploits, and/or benefiting from exploits, in Ultima Online.

Thank you for your understanding,

Ultima Online Support

Posted by Thellaren at 11:01 AM

August 5, 2001

Hero Titles and Light Sources Comparison

The following research was just completed by various members of UO Stratics:

  • First of all FatherGanja has been living in the Hero Title spawn areas for many days, trying to get as many details as possible. With the help of some other staff members he was able to get some fine results. You can find all that on our Hero Titles page. Now all we need to figure out is what those third tier titles are :)

  • Next on the list is some research done by Sie Ming on light sources. As you may know, the various light sources in UO all give a different amount of light, which can best be seen when walking in dark dungeons. To find out all about the differences between Campfires, Candles, Lanterns, Torches, Nightsight Potions and the In Lor spell, go see the Light Source Comparison page.


  • Xena Dragon

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:23 PM

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***Collector's Edition CD

    From Yahoo Groups:

    Ok folks, here's the deal. You may have noticed that I have been down for the better part of two weeks due to having to change server addresses and the time it takes for changes to take effect. I have been doing these 'toons thru thick and thin for over three years now. In that time I have gone through about five different hosts, several changes of server addresses, umpteen server outages, Y2K, T2A, UOTD, Melissa, SirCam, Code Red and a half dozen other viruses, DOS attacks, and all manner of plagues and pestilence.

    For that reason I have decided to offer up the entire three year collection of ImaNewbie to date in an exclusive Collector's Edition CD that will let you browse to your heart's content, anytime, regardless of whether the Internet or your Service Provider is Up, Down or Sideways at the time. Another bonus feature is no annoying advertising banners, pop-ups or cookies. Plus I have added a bunch of new stuff including an introduction and short history, character bios for all the major characters, indexes and some other stuff not available on my regular site. You can get all the details by heading over to my site. Check it out.

    ImaNewbie does Britannia

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:20 AM

    August 4, 2001

    Faction News

    This has been an exciting last few days for factions on the Baja Shard. The unrelenting Archangel led the Shadowlords (SLs) in massive raid campaigns against the newly reinforced Council of Mages (COM) this Friday. As the SLs arrived they found True Britannians (TBs) also raiding, and decided to ally. But their alliance was short lived, as there was confusion on the battlefield and TB quickly soon betrayed their allies. These factors made the SLs suffer heavy losses as they were surprised by the turnaround.

    Archangel would not give up, though, and forged a lasting alliance with the TBs and Longshot, their leader, and decided to raid again. This time the SLs came up with a new tactic and decided to split COM's forces by attacking from the stronghold's bridge. But time dragged on, and the TB force dwindled in size. The Shadowlords soon found themselves stranded, and, with no other choice, were forced to retreat. This final victory added together with the retirement of Minax' Lords of Death [LoD] from factions (to go to Chaos) and ensured the Council of Mages' hold on all 8 factions cities for the next 3 days.

    This reporter was amazed by the dedication of the COMs, since every scouting effort reported at least 20 COMs guarding inside their base and many more were ready to be called into action. Personally, I am impressed, and feel they do deserve all the towns for their efforts-even Minoc, which was in the hands of Talon D'Bane and Reshteel (Shadowlords) for an amazing 36 days.

    Pat Factor
    The #1 Stunna
    M&D

    Update- Minoc is not under COM control as of this moment due to the efforts of the TB thief Ratboy and the precision strike on COM by the SL. The Minoc sigil is still up for grabs.

    Posted by Ursula at 3:28 PM

    Crashing & Shopkeeper Restocking Fixes

    New to Testing for Next Update:

    This testing update addresses certain crashing issues involving containers, and a fix is being added regarding restocking & overstocking of certain NPC vendor inventory items.
    • A crash issue involving containers is being addressed, and involves dumping items to a players/pets feet if their pack is overloaded
    • To ensure that player-created materials retain their value, a fix is being added to vendors that will allow only up to 10 of each of the following items to be available from that vendor (until it restocks its inventory).
    • boards
    • arrows
    • ingots
    • bolts
    • hides

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:36 PM

    Creating Boards, Teleporting into Blocked Locations, and Balron Spawning Fix

    New to General Testing:

    This update addresses the creation of boards, stuck players teleporting into blocked locations, and adjusting the balron spawning within an Ilshenar dungeon.
    • Players will no longer gain skill for creating boards, and all logs in a players backpack will be changed into boards when boards are created.
    • An issue where stuck players could be teleported into blocked locations (causing them to be stuck again) has been resolved.
    • Fixed an issue causing balrons to spawn in an inaccessible area in an Ilshenar dungeon.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:30 PM

    Third Anniversary of The Golden Brew

    Please join us this Tuesday, August 7th at 6pm PST
    as we celebrate the Third Anniversary of The Golden Brew in Trammel.

    Events will be:

    Panty Raid III: Find the most panties and win 25K.

    Relay Race: Teams of three people each will race against each other. The team finishing first wins 75K.

    Horse Race: Riding a REGULAR HORSE, run the course the quickest and win 50K

    Cooking Contest:This new event should be lots of fun! Find out who's the best chef in the land! Prize: 50K

    Come enjoy fun, food and friends as we kick off another year at The Golden Brew!

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:46 AM

    August 2, 2001

    Wanted: Calling All Pirates!

    Posted to the FYI section at UO.COM earlier today:

    Arr! There be a great, grand ship ahead. And where there be a grand ship, there be treasure to be had. Check the riggin! Load the chase guns! Raise the Jack and haul wind! There be no sweeter trade than the life of a pirate.

    Do you enjoy plundering ships? Are you fond of colorful bandanas? Does your pet consistently crave crackers? If so, we want to hear from you! Were seeking tales of high-seas adventure and treasure-looting escapades. Tell us about your greatest battle or your most valuable pickings. Victims of swashbucklers are welcome to send in stories as well!

    Send your story as an e-mail, with a single screenshot attached, to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, August 10th. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include Pirates! in your subject line. The screenshot should be in bitmap format, and 640x480 resolution. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to uo-profiles become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:23 PM

    Ilshenar Monster Spawn Map for UOAM

    From Markeedragon.com:

    Announcing the Ilshenar Monster Spawn Map for UOAM. Designed to work in harmony with the current UOAM maps you will soon find this map indispensable! Many who have had the chance to view it already have used it to organize their guild hunts in Ilshenar. Enabling them to pick the difficulty of beast they wish to confront and so control the level of challenge the hunt gives them, safe in the knowledge that they wont have any fatal surprises! So if it's a guild hunt you want to organize, or if you're looking for the location at which that elusive monster spawns, or even if your trying to find one of the many Roving Gypsy camps in the area then look no further. You have just found the perfect solution!

    Markee Dragon is proud to host the Ilshenar Monster Spawn Map for UOAM. Special thanks to Luke "Klesk" Canvin for his hard work in creating this map.

    Markee Dragon
    www.markeedragon.com

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:28 PM

    Taming Concerns

    Sannio recently posted to the Tamers and Rangers Board at UO.COM. The following paragraph sums up just a bit of what he is looking for.

    Hi, I'm new here, and I was wondering if you could help me get up to speed on some of these Tamer concerns that have been coming up. There's a whole lot that I need to read, and if you could help summarize some things for me, that'd be awesome.

    Sannio
    Online Community Coordinator, UO
    Origin Systems
    Follow the link above to delve more into the subject matter and to read follow up issue summarizations from the taming community.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:55 AM

    August 1, 2001

    Wedding Announcement (Trammel)

    The following wedding announcement was posted to the UO.COM Event Calendar for Baja:

    Event: A Wedding Between The Lady Nightmare and the Lord Merlinist
    Location: A Flowery Place by Yew (Trammel)
    Time/Date: Aug 19, 6pm-7pm PDT

    NOTE:
    We would like to invite all our old time friends to join in this joyous event. Any and all are welcome. Gates will be opened from Moonglow on Trammel.

    The Order of Leonine is one of the oldest guilds in existence and would like to welcome all to this glorious event.

    The Lady Morgana of the Order of Leonine

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 4:44 PM

    Baja Trade Fair (Trammel)

    The following event was posted to the UO.COM Event Calendar for Baja:

    Event: Baja Trade Fair
    Location: Skara Brae Fair Grounds (Trammel)
    Time/Date: August 4th, 11am-2pm PDT
    Purpose: Bring all of your unwanted items for Trade or Sell

    NOTE:
    Prices should be reasonable.
    Dickering for prices and or trades welcome.
    This is to be a pleasant time for all.

    Grasser

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 4:38 PM

    The Seas of Ilshenar : A Survey From the Shore

    The following new report was found on the Turbulent Waters site, UO's premiere site for all things relating to the ocean:

    No ships ply the waters of this strange new facet. Rumors of seahorses on the waves have proven unfounded thus far. Nonetheless, one can see much of the seaways and rivers of Ilshenar by engaging in a little exploration. And now that UO:Third Dawn is running relatively well on my computer, I finally did just that over the weekend.


    The actual space covered by them is relatively small. Indeed, most of the bodies of water are referred to as termir, meaning "lake" in the language of that facet, which seems derived from the same language of the magic spells used in everyday casting. There are also pormir, which is a river in that language. The map of Ilshenar is the source of these terms for these areas, and their translations.
    For a more detailed look at Ilshenar, read the rest of the report here.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:24 AM

    July 31, 2001

    Sannio on 'Catching Up'

    The following was posted to the UO.COM forums:

    I want to post things of value to you; theres little point in me posting some information thats either too generic or has been said before in the exact same way. There will certainly be times when I post or explain something more that one way, and this kind of reiteration is a great way to help get a certain point or complicated idea across to people.

    Part of my job, right now and for the next, oh, one to two months or so, will be catching up" on what all the exact details are regarding playing UO, and what might be changing about those details. I'll have been meeting, and continue to meet, everyone on the UO team, to find out what they do, and how they do it, and how all they do affects so many other aspects of the game. Learning who does what and what does which and which affects who is a critical part of my job, along with how, when and why to explain any or all of what I learn.

    I don't want to post any wrong information, or anything valueless. Right now, everyones got the basics of Publish 12, and thats great. I could keep posting the same information, but I would consider that useless. Its more important form me to find out the useful information, because thats not only what I hope to give you, its what you need to play the game to what you feel is its fullest potential for you.

    Ill be happy to give out new information when I have it available to give to you, but unfortunately that may mean my early posting practices are slow, and I thank everyone in advance for their patience.

    =========
    Sannio
    Online Community Coordinator, UO
    Origin Systems

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:20 PM

    Publish 12 Update

    Some of the latest from the UO.COM Boards:

    We've been getting requests from players as to the status of the "Publish 12" update. Publish 12 was published to all shards on July 23rd, becoming active on most Shards early July 24th. Just as a note, while Vet Rewards are a big part of Publish 12, it also includes all those features & changes listed under the date "July 24th" in the Latest Update page at http://update.uo.com/latest.html. Included are changes to Vendors, Skill Modifications, a new GM rating tool, and a whole slew of necessary tweaks & adjustments to various in-game systems. These are all active, and have been since the 24th. And, of course, there's also Vet Rewards.

    Vet Rewards--which are not active yet, by the way--is a very special situation, in that we're anticipating a huge response once they go live, and we're taking the time necessary to see that the hardware can withstand the deluge of players who want to try out the system on the first day. Once we're sure everything is ready, we'll activate Vet Rewards--although to make sure everything goes smoothly, we'll start with one Shard at a time. (In case you were wondering: we'll post updates when Vet Rewards will be activated.) Thanks for your patience.

    Sannio

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:44 AM

    July 26, 2001

    Comments From Sannio

    The following item of interest was just posted to the Comments From The Team Section on the UO website:

    Comments from Sannio
    Hi, everyone. Im your new Online Community Coordinator, or OCC, and you can call me Sannio. Some of you may recall that name from my time as Seer Sannio on Chesapeake. I played for well over a year as Wixim the Mad, Lord Hughert, Korryn, Joye (Minax patsy in the Trinsic invasion), and even Dupre, plus a bunch of other characters and monsters and such. Before that, for a short time, I served Napa Valley for a few months as Counselor PapaMan.

    Players from Baja may know me as Nobody, Brother Huberty, or Nathan Harper, among others. In some way or another, Ive been involved with a lot of groups & communities there, such as Britannia Search & Rescue, the Freeborn Press, Avalon, Lumaria, Golden, the Golden Players, the Baja Mage Tower, the Scorpions, the Kingdom of Dawn, and even UO Stratics Baja section, plus a whole bunch more. (And Im also sure that everyone who knows me from Baja also appreciates the brevity of these comments, as opposed to my usual lengthy ramblings!)

    Before joining Origin Systems, Ive done Web design, desktop publishing, illustrating, comic books, trading cards, and other creative things like that. Now that Im Ultima Onlines OCC, Ill be a kind of communications middle-man between all of the players and all the teams here at Origin working on UO. The Online Community Relations team and I will try to help keep you informed on all the latest updates & changes in the gamebut dont expect me to give away any event scenario secrets! :] Ill also be trying to be your voice here at Origin, keeping everyone here informed in all the things that you care about or ways in which youd like the game to advance & grow. Youll probably see me most often posting on the UO.com message boards, and Ill look forward to posting back and forth with everyone there.

    Sannio
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    Origin Systems

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:38 PM

    July 24, 2001

    OSI: Database Maintenance July 25th

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Database Maintenance July 25th

    Ultima Online will be unavailable from 3:00 am - 6:00 am PDT Wednesday, July 25th for database maintenance. We apologize for any inconvenience.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:49 PM

    OSI: Housing Decay Reactivated

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Housing Decay Reactivated

    Housing decay has now been reinstated on all shards, to become active following their next downtime. The schedule for these maintenance periods is as follows:
    • East Coast shards, with the exception of Chesapeake, experienced an unscheduled downtime at 5:00 pm CDT, July 24th, and the housing decay became active at this time.
    • All West Coast shards will be taken down for their normal maintenance period at 5:00 am PDT, July 25th.
    • Japanese and Korean Shards will be taken down for their normal maintenance period at 8:00 am local time, July 25th (JST).
    • European Shards will be taken down for their normal maintenance period at 5:00 am local time, July 25th (GMT).
    • Siege Perilous will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 5:00 am, July 25th (CDT).
    • Formosa will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 8:00 am local Taiwan time, July 25th.
    • Oceania will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 5:00 am local Sydney time, July 25th.
    • AOL Legends will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 5:00 am EDT, July 25th.
    For more information on housing decay and refreshing, see Home Maintenance.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:48 PM

    OSI: Account Security

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Account Security

    As a reminder, no EA employee will ever ask for your UO password. If you are contacted in game or via email, IRC, or any other Internet messaging program by someone claiming to be an EA employee, do not give out your password. Furthermore, do not attempt to access or edit your account information through any third-party programs that may take you to a false representation of the Ultima Online website. The only valid URL for the Ultima Online account management website is http://www.ultima-registration.com

    For additional information on computer security and safety, please visit http://support.uo.com/faq_1.html

    Posted by Nobody at 11:45 PM

    A Wedding Between The Lady Nightmare and the Lord Merlinist

    I read the following wedding announcement on the Ultima Online Calendar, here:

    A Wedding Between The Lady Nightmare and the Lord Merlinist

    Sponsor: The Lady Morgana of the Order of Leonine
    Facet: Trammel
    Location: A flowery place by YEW, gates will be opened from moonglow in trammel
    Start Date: Aug 19 2001 9:00PM EST
    End Date: Aug 19 2001 10:00PM EST
    Recurrance: 1 Time Only

    We would like to invite all our old time friends to join in this joyous event. Any and all are welcome.

    The Order of Leonine is one of the oldest guilds in existence and would like to welcome all to this glorious event.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:59 AM

    Ravenshire to Host Story Night

    The following from Cantharis was recently posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Ravenshire to Host Story Night

    This week Ravenshire is happy to announce that we will host the story telling night with Meredith the Bard. Come tell your tale of bravery, tragedy, or any other story that strikes your fancy!

    You can even test your improvisational skills with Goldens famous Story roulette, wherein you get three words fromt he audience and make up a story with those three words in it. There will be an open bar as well as a BBQ. This event will take place Wed. the 25th 6:30 pm pst.

    Come and share a tale!!!

    Cantharis

    Posted by Nobody at 10:50 AM

    Rangers of the Realm Elect Council

    The following from the Stone Keeper was recently posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Rangers of the Realm Elect Council

    It had been preordained. The Rangers of the Realm (RoR) would be led by a council of Mentors chosen in a free election from the members.

    Not long after the Stone of RoR had been re-established, the Stone Keeper sent out the word. "All Rangers of RoR should ponder with care then vote for the most suitable names to form the first Council of RoR."

    The voting process which had been thought to finish soon, lasted a full week as more and more people flocked to the Stone joining the renewed ranger clan (nearly 100 in the first week).

    At week's end the votes were counted and the clan gathered in a forest clearing. They came from far and wide, as many as were able to attend. Some came at great difficulty and others were not able to be there due to the distances and time zones involved.

    They came to be part of the swearing in ceremony for the first RoR Council and to give witness to the oaths that were made. The Council would be comprised of people with phenomenal talent, energy and compassion. The mind of Petrovo, the determination of Adian O'Rourke and the heart of Seraphim were chosen by the members to form the first Council of RoR.

    In the end - all gave up a great round of cheer in true RoR fashion. "RAWRR"

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 10:47 AM

    Kingdom of Dawn to Raid Occlo

    The following from Lord Will Avengem was recently posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Kingdom of Dawn to Raid Occlo

    News of the recent Savage advances and a brief encounter with the Savage General have prompted the great Kingdom of Dawn to raid Occlo and dispatch its captors. With hope, the savage general will present himself and brought to justice!

    Our first attack will commence at 7pm PST on July 22... Any support is welcome, but the general must be taken alive if there is to be any chance of revealing the source of the savage campaigns.

    Safe Travels,
    Lord Will Avengem

    Posted by Nobody at 10:46 AM

    Faction News

    The following from Amalacon was recently posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Faction News

    Again CoM took the balance of the towns under direct control, applying thier force of will and taxing the citizens as the see fit. Britain and Minoc remain under Shadow Lord Control.

    Several of my Council brothers complained at the lack of intrest in raiding the still unrepaired CoM stronghold. It was an uneventful guarding period for the most part unlike the hey-day battles of the past that left the streets of Magi, the castles of Britain and the forests of Yew littered with bodies. KoRn Leading the Newly Revamped CoJ had the strongest presence as well as the Long time CoM's UMA. Ariak even deigned to come by for some guard duty.

    Amalacon
    Council of Mages
    Death Jester$

    Posted by Nobody at 10:43 AM

    Fairhaven Village Scavenger Hunt

    The following from Mayor Silkon of Fairhaven Village was recently posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Fairhaven Village Scavenger Hunt

    Come one come all to the Fairhaven Scavenger hunt on Saturday July 28 at 7:00 p.m. PST. Do ye think ye know the history of the lands better then anyone else if ye do grab 2 friends and come try and become the winner of the 500K in gold prize for being the first to complete the clues to each location.

    Rules
    • There will be 3 and only 3 people per team.
    • Each team most register by Friday July 27 at 9 p.m. PST.
    • Each team can use any rune at the fairhaven rune library to get to the places they need to find; IT IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED YOU USE THE LIBRARY.
    • The first team to find the 10 different locations from the clues and return back to Fairhaven wins 500K.
    • A good knowledge of the Britannia history is recommended.
    • Some locations are extremely hazardous so be prepared to defend your life against whatever may lurk in the dark.
    Drinks and socializing will be done during and after the event so come one come all and enjoy a night in the Fairhaven Village. We highly encourage other player run cities to have teams to add to the excitement, we will see you there.

    For questions and answers please contact us at ICQ 60726000 or email at silkon88@hotmail.com or visit our website at http://www.FHvillage.com

    Posted by Nobody at 10:42 AM

    Fairhaven Village Seeks Necromantic Sword to Fell Lich Commander

    The following was recently posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Fairhaven Village Seeks Necromantic Sword to Fell Lich Commander

    Fairhaven Village has experienced many strange events over the past few months linked to a sinister lich lord. Now the villagers are very close to discovering a means to confront this mysterious evil.
    Last night the warriors of Fairhaven set out on a quest to find an artifact that would let them destroy the evil Lich that had been terrorizing the countryside. First, the party, led as always by Fizban, set off to the star room to meet a fabled oracle who was believe to have knowledge that could help them.



    Although the creature spoke in disjointed riddles when found, the canny villagers were able to deduce that they needed three things: a quantity of shadow ore, a tome with incantations related to Necromancy in it, and the special skill of a certain smith in Jhelom named Mordoc.



    These crucial ingredients could supposedly be used to forge a sword of sufficient magical strength and nature to defeat the Lich. The villagers acquired the ore easily enough, and managed to find the tome within the abandoned lab in the center of the hedge maze.

    They then brought these two items to Mordoc, the smith in Jhelom, who agreed to forge for them a custom sword of superior strength. After preparing the materials and selecting the right incantation from the book, Mordoc moved about his business quickly and finally produced a katana of amazing power. Hopefully, this weapon will let us defeat this menace once and for all!
    Thankye Nether

    Posted by Nobody at 10:39 AM

    New Baja IRC Channel

    The following was recently posted by by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    New Baja IRC Channel

    Are you interested in chatting with other Baja players? Perhaps making new friends, allies, and connections. Consider using the new Stratics IRC channel #baja

    http://uo.stratics.com/irc/uoirc.shtml

    Posted by Nobody at 10:37 AM

    OSI: Veteran Rewards Update

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Veteran Rewards Update

    As a reminder, we will be monitoring all public shards once they have received Publish 12 to see that the publish is running optimally before we will activate veteran rewards. Please note that this means players will not be able to choose rewards immediately once the publish is received. The rewards system will be activated systematically on pre-determined shards, and we will post a schedule once it is determined. We are working to see that this delay will be as short as possible, and we appreciate your patience.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:34 AM

    July 23, 2001

    The Golden Brew Players Present...



    Thanks to Mirabel for the annoucement artwork!

    Posted by Nobody at 11:42 PM

    Scottish UO Meet Reminder - Sat July 28th

    The following was posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    Scottish UO Meet Reminder - Sat July 28th

    The following reminder was sent to us by Iain in regard to the Scottish UO Meet coming up this coming Saturday:
    Just a quick reminder to everyone...

    This Saturday see's the first of hopefully many Scottish meet-up's for UO players on the Europa shard.

    We're looking at meeting on 28th July, in 'Espionage' on Victoria Street (just off George IV bridge) in Edinburgh, at 3pm. If people don't know Edinburgh I shall be waiting at the left hand side of the WH Smith entrance in Waverley Train Station at 2:30pm - I shall be leaving to head to 'Espionage' at 3pm. The reason for Espionage is that it has large booths with large comfy leather seats that can easily accomodate 10 people each. 'Espionage' is a 6 floor labyrnth of rooms, corridors and bars - so it can be quite easy to get lost if you don't arrive early. The place where we will (hopefully) be sitting is on the ground floor to the right after you walk along the corridor at the entrance. If you are still having problems, contact me - iainwatson@yahoo.com - and I shall give you my mobile number. We will also all have name badges, so it shouldn't be too hard to spot us.

    There's talk of moving on to a club later at night, but I'll leave that to the day to arrange, coz not everyone's keen on it.

    Could you please leave a note here if you wish to attend with your RL name, main character name, guild (if any), and pigeon/mail number. If your too shy to leave your RL name here send me a pigeon on 9921764 or email - iainwatson@yahoo.com - with your details...

    The Specifics:
    Where: Espionage Bar, Victoria Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
    Date: Saturday, 28th July, 2001
    Time: 3 pm

    Contacts:
    Coordinator: Mentazm
    iainwatson@yahoo.com
    ICQ 9921764

    Posted by Nobody at 4:31 PM

    InsideUO Updated for UO3D

    The following from Alazane was posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    InsideUO Updated for UO3D

    The following news comes to us from Alazane, the creator of InsideUO:
    InsideUO should now support the Third Dawn map. Just right click on the map and it is the selection at the bottom. If you have any problems with it, let me know. InsideUO also now displays the contents of Skills.mul, allows you to create phrases with the fonts, and is sporting a new art viewer window that should make life a little easier.

    I'd also like to get names in for the Gumps, so if anyone is feeling bored and knows all of the names, please e-mail me a list of the number and the name of each gump.

    What is InsideUO? From his website - "InsideUO is a 32bit Windows application designed to reveal the innermost details of the client side of Ultima Online. Everything that is provided from InsideUO, from the static images to the sounds, come directly from UOs data files. Hence, InsideUO is of no use without said data files." To check it out for yourself head on over to Alazane's InsideUO.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:30 PM

    OSI: Publish Update - All Remaining Shards

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish Update - All Remaining Shards

    Publish 12 will be published to all remaining shards today, to be active following their next maintenance period. The schedule for these maintenance periods is as follows:
    • All East Coast and Central shards (with the exception of Chesapeake) will be taken down for an unscheduled maintenance at 2:00 pm CDT, July 23rd.
    • Japanese and Korean Shards will be taken down for their normal maintenance period on at 8:00 AM local time, July 24th (JST).
    • European Shards will be taken down for their normal maintenance period at 5:00 am local time, July 24th (GMT).
    • Siege Perilous will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 5:00 am, July 24th (CDT).
    • Formosa will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 8:00 am local Taiwan time, July 24th.
    • Oceania will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 5:00 am local Sydney time, July 24th.
    • AOL Legends will be taken down for its normal maintenance period at 5:00 am EDT, July 24th.
    The changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:25 PM

    OSI: Housing Decay Alerts

    There were recently a string of Housing Alerts on the FYI page of the Ultima Online Web site. I was away from a computer, but it looks like OSI has things well in hand. Here's the posts, from earliest to latest:

    Housing Decay Alert

    Due to an issue causing permanent buildings to decay, all shards with Publish 12 (Chesapeake, Baja, Sonoma, Napa Valley, and Pacific) were given an automatic housing refresh last night (July 19th), and the affected buildings will be refreshed manually until the issue is addressed.

    In addition to this, housing decay on all remaining Ultima Online shards has been turned off over the weekend. This means that all homes on these shards will be refreshed to like new status, and will remain so until further notice.
    We will give at least 24 hours notice before the decay is turned back on, and we will update the patch message to ensure that all players are notified. We apologize for any inconvenience, and urge all players to check the patch messages before logging in to avoid missing important information.

    Improperly Condemned Homes

    We would like to assure all players whose homes are currently marked as improperly condemned that they will not lose their homes at this time. The housing decay is not active currently, and the problem causing homes to appear as improperly condemned will be addressed as soon as possible.

    We will update further once this has been fixed.

    House Placement and House Transfer

    The auto refresh that was implemented on all shards has affected the ability for current house owners to place or have new houses transferred to them. The development team has been notified and is working to resolve this. We apologize for the inconvenience and hope to resolve this as quickly as possible.

    Housing Decay Reactivated July 24th

    Tomorrow afternoon (July 24th) at 11:00 pm CDT, we will be reactivating house decay on all shards. Houses currently marked as condemned will be uncondemned before the decay is turned back on, and will not collapse when the system is reactivated. Please note that once the decay rate is turned back on, all players will need to refresh their homes as they normally would.

    For information on housing decay rates, see http://guide.uo.com/house_6.html.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:24 PM

    July 21, 2001

    Event for Saturday July 28th...

    FAIRHAVEN VILLAGE SCAVENGER HUNT

    Come one come all to the Fairhaven Scavenger hunt on Saturday July 28 at 7:00 p.m. PST. Do ye think ye know the history of the lands better then anyone else? If ye do, grab 2 friends and come try and become the winner of the 500K in gold prize for being the first to complete the clues to each location.

    Rules:

    1. There will be 3 and only 3 people per team.

    2. Each team most register by Friday July 27 at 9 p.m. PST.

    3. Each team can use any rune at the fairhaven rune library to get to the places they need to find; IT IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED YOU USE THE LIBRARY.

    4. The first team to find the 10 different locations from the clues and return back to fairhaven wins 500K.

    5. A good knowledge of the Britannia history is recommended.

    6. Some locations are extremely hazardous so be prepared to defend you life against whatever may lurk in the dark.

    Drinks and socializing will be done during and after the event so come one come all and enjoy a night in the Fairhaven Village. We highly encourage other player run cities to have teams to add to the excitement, we will see you there.

    Fairhaven Village is located in trammel by the Yew moongate, for questions and team registration please contact me either by ICQ 60726000 or email at silkon88@hotmail.com or visit our website at www.FHvillage.com

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:01 PM

    July 20, 2001

    Calandryll: Scenario Analysis

    The following was posted by Teich Dragon to UO Stratics:

    Calandryll: Scenario Analysis

    Calandryll made his promised synopsis for the orc quest here:
    A few weeks ago, based on some requests from players, I promised I'd write a synopsis of the scenario, describe the goals, and write my view of what we accomplished. Ask and ye shall recieve:

    The Savage Empire Scenario
    Scenario Description
    Strange creatures (the savages) are driving the orcs out of their homes, which is causing the orcs to attack the player cities. The savages' reasons for doing so is not revealed...yet. Note, while the scenario title bears the same name as the single player Worlds of Ultima game and was inspired by it, it is not based on that game.

    The Savage Empire Scenario had 6 major goals:

    1. Introduce players to the concept of scenarios and set the expectations.
    a. Since everyone reading this knows what a scenario is by now, I think we achieved this one. :)

    2. Update new content into the game within a context (story) on an ongoing and uninterrupted basis (no delays or off-weeks once a scenario starts).
    a. With the exception of the Chesapeake shard, there were no delays, off-weeks, or interruptions in the scenario.
    b. We did split week 4 into two weeks (the orc bomber was originally supposed to be with the orc chopper and town attacks in week 4) to give QA more time to test, but most players didn't even realize the change to the schedule and it was a good example of fluid design.

    3. Make sure new content is fun and useful and try to include as many play-styles as possible.
    a. Most feedback from players regarding the new monsters (especially the orc scouts and savages) was very positive. The new AI introduced worked well and players seemed to enjoy the challenged they presented. Good AI, with respects to monsters in a video game, does not mean "make the monster more difficult"...it means "make the monster fun and challenging."
    b. The interaction of the bola with savage riders (need to knock them off the ridgeback to tame the ridgeback) helped create some grouping, while not forcing it on those that like to solo.
    c. Some players played the scenario because of the story and role-playing. Some played it for the loot. Others enjoyed searching for the orc encampments and exploring the new dungeon. All of that is good.
    d. Most of the new monsters were texture changes. The artists did a great job making sure everything looked good as far as the Third Dawn models and most of the 2d replacement art looked good.

    4. Introduce as few bugs as possible, fix any bugs by the next update, and don't impact other development.
    a. We published the shards nine times. During those nine publishes, we had no reverts and with the exception of the merge issue with publish 12 (which was not a problem caused by scenario code and only occurred on Chessie), we did not impact development at all.
    b. There were only two bugs of major concern released as part of the scenario. One was a shard crasher (happened once, was fixed an hour later) and the other was an issue with stealing caused by the orc mask (again, fixed within 12 hours of the first GM report).
    c. The majority of other bugs were fixed by the next week's update (what few there were) and overall, considering the amount of content and nine shard publishes in a row, our QA team did a bang-up job catching the bugs during testing before any of you ever saw them.
    d. We also had a lot of help from folks such as Prophet, Evocare, Vex, Adrick, and Groover working on things such as the looting rights change, client patches, making savage paint work (you have no idea how many changes we made to code that had not been touched in years to make this happen), and general design ideas. The team pitched in a lot while continuing to work on their systems.

    5. Create a dynamic outcome based solely on code and systems
    a. While the dynamic outcome got a bad rap, actually, the code worked perfectly, the timing issue is what caused concern. The fact that it ended too quickly was a major disappointment for many players and one we plan to resolve in future scenarios. But, the way in which the code reacted to the players' actions proved that we can code dynamic outcomes without having to manually update or force anything.

    6. Take the feedback from players on the first scenario and incorporate them into the next scenario.
    a. I'd like to concentrate on the last one. I've been reading the feedback and here is what I believe were the major concepts players wanted more of.
    - i. More in-game fiction. Books, scrolls, etc.
    - ii. Less camping...have some monsters spawn in random locations.
    - iii. More story in general (explanations and reasons). This is more a product of the fact that the Savage Empire scenario was more of a set-up scenario. You'll learn a lot more in future scenarios.
    - iv. More craftables and less that require fighting to get the resources. While I believe that having some craftables require fighting (again, encourages community group play - sorta the point of play an MMORPG) not all should.
    - v. Make sure the dynamic outcome lasts longer. This one goes without saying. :)
    b. While not all of these will make it into the next scenario, the feedback is useful and could influence future scenarios. Did I miss anything?

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Nobody at 12:09 AM

    July 19, 2001

    OSI: Publish 12 on West Coast Shards

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish 12 on West Coast Shards

    We have published the changes listed in Testing for Next Update to the West Coast shards (Baja, Napa Valley, Pacific, and Sonoma) during this mornings normal maintenance period (July 19th). We will monitor these shards closely, and will be publishing to the remaining shards once we have determined the publish is operating optimally.

    We will update further as to the publish schedule for the remaining shards, and the changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:59 PM

    OSI: Chesapeake and West Coast House Refresh

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Chesapeake and West Coast House Refresh

    Due to an issue causing permanent buildings to decay, and in order to prevent players on the Chesapeake and West Coast shards from losing homes due to this issue, all houses on these shards have been automatically refreshed today (July 19th CDT). We appreciate your understanding, and apologize for any inconvenience.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:59 PM

    July 18, 2001

    Raph Koster Interviewed by Computer Games Online

    Computer Games Online posted an interview with Raph "Designer Dragon" Koster, one of the creators of Ultima Online. The article is here, and you can read the introductory text, below:

    Rapping with Raph
    Star Wars Galaxies point man Raph Koster talks about online games
    by Mark Asher

    Raph Koster is the point man on Star Wars Galaxies, the LucasArts and Sony Online game that folks are predicting will be the first million-subscriber online game. As "Designer Dragon," he was also one of the creators of Ultima Online and is a veteran MUDder. Although unable to discuss specifics on the Star Wars game, he was willing to talk with us about online role-playing games in general.
    I feel the need to point out Raph's personal "shout out" to a fine group of native Baja players. When he was asked, "What was UO's biggest triumph?" part of his response included the following (I added the bold text):
    I think that we were successful in making a more dynamic environment than what was the norm. It wasn't anywhere near what we'd hoped for, but it was enough, I think. We got that amazing player economy, we got those player towns, and theater troupesshout out to the Golden Brew players hereand just this stunning array of guilds and the like. I don't know that the level of community involvement, and of so many microcommunities, has manifested anywhere else.
    Congratulations, Golden Brew players! (Click to find out more the Town of Golden and the Golden Brew).

    Posted by Nobody at 8:27 PM

    Rangers of the Realm Return

    The following was posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    Rangers of the Realm Return

    Rangers of the Realm Return to Baja! This is an eye witness account of the establishment of a new ranger outpost from an anonymous source.
    The day started like most others but something would happen and it would become a day to remember. The finishing touches on the log house had been completed the night before and if all went well this humble abode would become a hub for one of the most dynamic forces in the land.

    The day dragged on and anxious folk stopped by to see if any news had been heard ("No nothing yet").

    Then as daylight turned to dusk, an elderly man walked slowly out of the forest. His pace was deliberate with his eyes and ears wary for any sign of danger. In spite of his years and the weariness of a long trek, the responsibility he carried kept him alert.

    Reaching the cabin he paused briefly to observe the path he had taken from the woods. No one approached. He felt confident his arrival was unobserved.

    The fact that no one followed and that his trip was uneventful did not really surprise him. No one would ever suspect him or imagine the value contained in his pack.

    The man was the Stone Keeper and he carried a precious vessel which permitted him to transport the Guildstone of Baja's once largest and most powerful clan.

    The Rangers of the Realm (RoR) have reunited and returned. RAWRR!
    Thanks and good luck!

    Posted by Nobody at 8:15 PM

    Scenario Comments By Calandryll

    The following was posted by Teich Dragon to UO Stratics:

    Scenario Comments By Calandryll

    Calandryll also replied to to some comments about the last scenario here. The text inverted are questions/suggestions from the players, so please don't get confused about it:
    --First, great feedback!!!
    --I pulled out the major points of each of your points to respond to. If I took something out of context, please correct me.

    "If neither outcome is worse, then there is no reason to favor a certain outcome at all -- or even participate at all.
    --I don't agree. Perhaps neither outcome is worse, but different players will benefit from different outcomes. For instance, let's say two outcomes in a fight for the city of Skara are: a) Skara becomes a dungeon (meaning monsters spawn there) or b) skara is saved (meaning you can bank there). For some players, the idea of a new dungeon is preferable, while to others, Skara is their home and they want it back the way it was. I'm sure I could think of a better example, given enough time. What I meant by my original statement was that outcomes where the player-base as a whole "loses" are a bad idea.

    Perhaps the worst outcome should come from doing nothing??"
    --I like that idea a lot. In fact, that is what happens now, if players don't retake the towns, they will be forever under attack. Doing nothing does result in a negative outcome until they do something.

    During this scenario I felt a little bit that the new content (which took the form of new items many times) was used as a crutch to help support a story that could not be fully expressed in game.
    --Actually, it was more that much of the story was not told on purpose. Again, think of this scenario as the opening chapter of a book. For instance, lets say that book starts out with an invasion of a town by marauding monsters. Do you (or the characters in the book) learn in the first chapter who caused that invasion? Usually not. Usually, you have to read a few more chapters before you can put the pieces together. In-game fiction didn't fit in this scenario...in the next one (the next chapter if you will), it does.

    "This scenario needed to be far more dynamic. There were basically three outcomes: orcs, savages, or neither."
    --For us to do what you propose in the first scenario would have been the absolute worst thing we could have done for a first pass. What you have listed in your second example is the result of an evolution of what we did in the first one. It is extremely easy to make that diagram, even easy to fill it in, but as you said, infinitely harder and more time consuming to design, code, balance, and test it. The fact that the first, fairly simple dynamic outcome did not go well is proof that trying to do something that complicated would have been disastrous. Too often, in our eagerness to flex our design muscles, we design above our own experience. Its like trying to run before one has learned how to walk (to quote Tyrant). :)
    --Is it a goal to have a scenario like that? Actually, I'm not sure if they ever need to be that complicated...but even if I did, they won't be like that for quite some time until we learn more.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content
    .

    Posted by Nobody at 8:05 PM

    Celebrity Chat Log with Cal & Team

    The following was posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    Celebrity Chat Log with Cal & Team

    We are currently having DNS issues with our UOHoC Site, but in the meantime, I wanted to make sure you were all able to read yesterday's Celebrity Chat with Calandryll, Gromm, Augur, and Vex from the Ongoing Content Team. Here is a snippet from it:

    Zeromus_ - Is part of the scenarios project to give UO a permenant active fiction to accompany it (say, through the other power indicated in the fiction which went with this scenario) or do you plan to stick to more compact story arcs and self-contained Scenarios?
    Calandryll_OSI - Absolutely. The scenarios aren't meant to be a bunch of short stories... many future scenarios will play off the ones before it. Think of the scenarios as
    Calandryll_OSI - chapters in a book...a book that you get to play a part in...you're just finished chapter one.
    For now, you can all read it at our Temp Location. I will let you all know ASAP once the main UOHoC site is working again.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:02 PM

    July 17, 2001

    OSI: Hanse Ups the Rate of Big Fish

    Hanse, one of the UO Live Designers for Ultima Online, posted the following message to the Development Board, here:

    Re: Fishing, any chance of it being worthwhile? [re: Gung_Farmer]

    Yes, the big fish was complained about because it was too hard to fish up. We made it more common (along the lines of a treasure map, but it requires less skill). It had a typo and had a very tough fishing up percentage (folks were spending 8 hours without fishing up one). It was something like a 0.01% chance. It was upped to roughly 3% or so successful attempts (that's a very rough estimate). That change was made prior to the taxidermy kit being available for purchase.

    -Hanse
    UO Live Designer

    Posted by Nobody at 10:31 AM

    July 16, 2001

    OSI: Publish 12 Update

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish 12 Update

    Since activating Publish 12 on the Chesapeake shard in late June, we have been monitoring the shard closely, and we are targeting to release the final week of the event scenario publish to the Chesapeake shard on Tuesday, July 17th. Once it is determined that there are no unforeseen issues involving the final week of the Savage Empire scenario and Publish 12, a schedule will be set for the release of Publish 12 to the other shards.

    Publish 12, which includes the veteran rewards system, is our highest priority, and we hope to see it released to all shards soon. We are looking to roll out Publish 12 to all shards by late next week, but please understand that due to testing considerations and time-sensitive problems that may arise, all schedules may be subject to change.

    A list of the changes included in this publish can be found in Testing for the Next Update.

    Considering the complexities of the rewards system, we will wait until all public shards have received Publish 12 before the veteran rewards system will be activated. Once all shards are running Publish 12, and we are confident that the veteran rewards system is functioning properly, we will begin to activate veteran rewards systematically on pre-determined shards. Please note that this means that players will not be able to choose rewards immediately once the publish is received. We are working to see that this delay will be as short as possible, and we appreciate your patience.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:28 PM

    July 14, 2001

    OSI Harassment Policy Update

    The following was posted yesterday by citizenKane2 to UO Stratics:

    OSI Harassment Policy Update

    The harrassment policy of OSI on the official UO website has been updated.Cynthe posted this on the official UO Boards:
    Ever since I came into the UO community, harassment has been a major issue - especially on this board (remembers the never ending harassment thread). Part of it was the fact that there were so many instances of it, and part of it was the fact that our stance was not as cut-and-dry as it should have been.

    The way some harassment calls in the past were handled led some people to feel that they were as likely to be punished for using the harassment tool as the harassers themselves. This led to people who were angry about being harassed, but who were afraid to use the tool to do anything about it.

    This was a problem.

    So it became a goal to see that the harassment policy was updated, and that we made it more clear just what the tool is for, how it's used, and what happens when it's used. We are also updating the policy internally, and our GMs have been in on the process.

    For the most part, the policy is unchanged, with the exception of one thing: grief play. In the past, players have been asked to page in for grief play under "Other" instead of "Harassment", since the grief play does not show up in the logs that are reviewed by the Harassment team. However, to make it easier for the players, all harassment, whether physical or verbal, will now be addressed under the Harassment tool.

    The important thing to note is that grief play still does need to be witnessed to be verifiable, so if you are paging about physical harassment (in other words, harassment that does not fall into the verbal category and cannot be verified through a chat log), then it needs to be done right away. The GM's cannot determine grief play if it is no longer occuring once they can get there.

    This policy has been discussed by many departments here before making it live on the site today, and I'm interested in getting your feedback.

    You can find it here:
    http://support.uo.com/gm_9.html
    Additional information from Teich Dragon was posted today:
    Cynthe On The New Harassment Policy

    Adressing a lot of player concerns of missusing the new harassment policy, here is a post from Cynthe about that.

    I put in the original questions, so you won't get confused again:
    Cynthe, I'm sure that consolidating the various methods of reporting problems is a step in the right direction and the fact that the GM's have been a part of this move is encouraging. With that said though, I don't think that this addresses what the real problem in UO is (as far as harassment in general goes).

    You are absolutely correct that in the past GM responses to harassment calls have often subjected the "caller" to more problems than those doing the harassing. And, as a result, people tend to just try and ignore it, but that only works to an extent. In my opinion, there are two MAJOR problems with OSI's current harassment policy.

    One. You have set the standard for determining harassment much too high and those that are the "professional" harassers, can quote to you chapter and verse of your policy. I've seen some that have a macro explaining all the steps that "the innocent party" must take before the harasser can be punished. Your "move away from the harassment" standard allows the harassers to stake out their territory and virtually do whatever they desire to you while you are there (if they don't cross the race line, that is). If you don't like it, you have to leave. Well, that's a victory for the little harassers and it forces the "innocent" to have to depart from an area that they very well might have a reason for being at. Telling people to "turn on the obscenity filter" to avoid repetitive obscene language is unfair to the "innocent" because that filter system causes them to lag. So, once again, the harasser has won and gets away with impacting the "innocent's" play. All supported, btw, because of OSI's enforcement policy. Right along with this is the fact, that under your current policy, the "professional" harassers can harass virtually ad infinitum...they do it, you must leave. They have a problem only if they follow you. If you run into them later, they get another free shot, and you have to leave. Why? Because in neither of the encounters, is that one instance (forget the fact that this happens everyday), in and of itself, sufficient to meet OSI's standard of harassment.

    Two, the ignore feature, which would solve many harassment problems, not only causes you to see no speech whatsoever from the individual, it also prevents the chars from showing up in "all names". And while that may seem insignificant to you, it's important to someone that is constantly involved in PvP. And though I have no evidence of this because I don't use it for stated reason, I suspect that the ignore feature also causes lag (just as the obscenity feature does).

    So, combining these is important I guess. But, how does it address the real problem?
    Answer from Cynthe:
    I do see your point, and it's one that was discussed at length. But in every case of policy, there are two major things to consider.

    One - does it do its job well enough? In other words, will this policy solve the problems it is meant to solve, and help innocent people be able to fight back against harassment?

    And two - will it cause more problems than it solves? Players can also harass other players by exploiting the harassment feature. Picture a guild that wants to have a specific guy banned from the game. Guild members take turns going up to the guy and mooning him until he finally tells them to *#% off. Then they page harassment for his having said something rude. If we didn't have some kind of standard for seeing that the harasser was intetnionally being rude, and intended to continue doing so, then this kind of thing could happen every day.
    In reply to:

    Right along with this is the fact, that under your current policy, the "professional" harassers can harass virtually ad infinitum...they do it, you must leave.
    This isn't necessarily true - note that in the policy it says that the genuine attempt to get them to stop could also consist of you asking them to stop.

    It may seem silly to you to say to someone who is harassing you, "Excuse me, but you are getting no advantage out of killing my horses, and it's making me unable to play. This is getting to the point of harassment - please stop!" But without seeing evidence of some sort of insistence on the harasser's part to continue the harassment, there's often little that can be done.

    Picture a driver who gets pulled over for driving 90 in a 55 mph zone. If there were no speed limit sign posted, he might get off the hook, because he could claim that he'd never been told the speed limit was only 55. And this is a good thing, right? Otherwise, law enforcement could simply lower the speed limit wherever they chose, not put up a sign about it, and pull over every car that enters the area for speeding.

    In harassment cases, a player could get off the hook if it could be proved that he or she may not have realized they were harassing someone. And in some cases it could be true - some players simply are used to acting a certain way, and don't even realize that their behavior is being seen as harassment. So we ask players to take the first step, whether that be leaving the area or asking the harassing player to stop the harassing actions - either way, we need to be sure that it was made clear to the harassing player that they are harassing someone. That way the player knows, and the GM knows, that if the behavior continued, then the harassing player knew full well that it was being considered harassment.

    Our goal is to find the best balance possible between making sure that players can fight harassment, without innocent players having to play in fear of being labeled as harassers when they are not.

    ___________________
    Cynthe
    Community Manager
    Ultima Online
    ORIGIN Systems

    Posted by Nobody at 11:19 AM

    Scenario FAQ By Calandryll

    The following two items were posted by Teich Dragon to UO Stratics:

    Scenario FAQ By Calandryll

    Here is little Scenario FAQ by Calandryll:
    Q: Will the items, monsters, and points-of-interest remain in the game once the scenario is over?
    A: Yes. With minor exceptions (such as the frightend orc) all of the items, monsters and POIs will remain in the game after the scenario ends. The idea here is to create lasting content that goes beyond the story.

    Q: How do the stories on BNN work?
    A: The stories are posted about one week before the scenario publish they relate to. The purpose of the stories is to provide you with the context for the updates and to give you clues as to what to expect next.

    Q: How often will you do these and how long does each Scenario last?
    A: We expect to continue doing these as long as players enjoy them. Generally each scenario will last between 6 to 8 weeks, with about one month (give or take a week) inbetween each one.

    Q: Will the scenarios tie into each other?
    A: Many will yes. The idea is to create an over-arching story, not just a bunch of short stories.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Nobody at 11:01 AM

    OSI: Baja and Sonoma Shards

    The following two items were posted today to the Shard Issues page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Baja and Sonoma Shards 9:18AM CST (GMT -06:00)

    We will be taking the Baja and Sonoma shards down in order to perform some necessary maintenance. We expect this maintenance to take approximately 1.5 hours. We will update you again should there be any changes to the schedule.

    Baja Returns 10:20AM CST (GMT -06:00)

    The Baja Shard has returned to service and is now available. We apologize for the inconvenience this interruption may have caused.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:52 AM

    OSI: Ultima-Online Celebrity Chat

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Ultima-Online Celebrity Chat

    Join us Monday, July 16th at 7:00PM CDT in #Ultima-Online for another Ultima Online Celebrity Chat, sponsored by Stratics. Guests this week will be Calandryll, Gromm, and Augur from the UO Scenario/Content Design Team. Stop in and ask them your questions about their current and upcoming scenarios and projects.

    Never been on Stratics IRC before, click the link below for more details.

    Ultima-Online Celebrity Chat

    Posted by Nobody at 10:49 AM

    July 13, 2001

    Orcs Win Against Savages?

    There's several rumors flying around that the ongoing "Orcs versus Savages" Quest Scenario is over, and that the Orcs have won the war. There has been no official word on the possiblility of the ending of this conflict, and our eyes are rivited to BNN for confirmation or denial of the rumors.

    Some citizens have claimed that there are dramatically less Savages in Britannia, and some suggest there are none left, such as Moorrock on the Savage Truth message board: "[S]eems the orcs and humans won, the Savages are gone completely that i have seen from baja."

    Others, however, offer up contrary observations, such as Honda on the Kingdom of Dawn message forums: "Actually I don't think it's over just yet. I just made a trip to Occlo to mark some runes and the place is swamped with Savages."

    We'll post more on the Orcs versus Savages conflict as it becomes available.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 7:55 AM

    Savage Special Attack

    The following was posted by citizenKane2 to UO Stratics:

    Savage Special Attack

    Confirmation from Calandryll (UO [Designer], Ongoing Content) that savages have a special attack when mounted on ridgebacks on the official UO Boards:
    Regarding the ridgebacks... Actually, when mounted, the savage riders perform a special stomp attack that damages everyone near them and knocks them down. Once they got knocked off, they can't do the special attack.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 7:39 AM

    July 12, 2001

    OSI: Orc Masks and Savage Paint

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Orc Masks and Savage Paint

    Many players have been asking about the new masks of orcish kin and the savage tribal paint and how they work. While most players have figured out the mask will explode if you attack an orc and the paint will burn if you attack a savage, there are many other interactions that are designed into these masks. In order to clear up some confusion, the list below should clarify some of these interactions. Note the examples are all in reference to the mask of orcish kin and orcs, but they all hold true for tribal paint and savages as well.
    • If your pet, hireling, or summoned creature attacks or is attacked by an orc while you are wearing a mask of orcish kin, the orc mask will explode. Note this is the case even if your pet auto-defends.
    • If you provoke two creatures onto each other and an orc attacks one of those creatures while you are wearing a mask of orcish kin, the mask will explode. The system sees you as the controller of the creature you provoked and hence, the mask will explode if an orc attacks or is attacked by it, even if you are no longer in the area.
    • If you attack an orc and kill it and then put on the mask of orcish kin the mask will explode because you still have that orc in your aggressor list. After attacking an orc (even if you never hit it and it never hits you) wait a while before putting on an orc mask.
    • You cannot wear a mask of orcish kin and savage paint at the same time.
    The orc masks and the savage paint are powerful items, but with that power comes danger. It is wise to use caution when donning either of these items.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:27 PM

    July 11, 2001

    A Look at the Ridgeback

    Pat Factor, Shard-renowned Grandmaster Tamer and Shadowlord Faction supporter, recently gave me the oppotunity to take a gander at his new Ridgeback mount. Pat brought his newly-tamed beast to the BS&R Treasure Hunters Rune Library for viewing, while he briefed me on his capture and posed for a screenshot.

    You can see Pat's Ridgeback in the screenshot on the right, standing just in front of myself (in the orange) and Maximus (in the red). It was found and tamed by Pat, himself, in the Cove area.

    The screenshot shows how the Ridgeback looks while using the UO3D client. However, when using the standard UO 2D client, the Ridgeback looks like an unnaturally-colored yellow Ostard the sort of yellow that might appear if you colored it with the straight-yellow from a simple players dye tub.

    It feels like Im riding on a tank, Pat said about about his new mount.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 8:50 PM

    OSI comments on future and present

    Great News About Ridgebacks (Source: UO Stratics)

    Great news from the uo.com-boards about the ridgebacks and for players who would like to ride one, but don't have a tamer:

    Yes, they require high taming to tame, but no taming to own/ride.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content
    In another posting Calandryll talks about some things that players may have misinterpreted about the scenarios:
    Most GM's are tired of it because of the volume of calls it generates.

    --Not sure where you got that information since it is not even remotely true. The scenario isn't generating a lot of calls at all and most bug reports are fixed within one week. I know this because I actually speak to the GM leads on a regular basis about the scenario and I have gotten nothing but positive feedback. These are the type of folks that would tell us immediatly if our work was impacting their jobs as I have worked with many of them for a very, very long time.

    No one wants this except the guy who purpetrated it. So once again the vast majority are outvoted.

    --That's odd as well since by all evidence of our tracking, a ton of players are participating in and using the items in the scenario. Also, while there are negative posts about the scenarios, there are also, many, many positive ones (as well as many e-mails to us directly).

    THIS is supposed to be a substitute for the Seers that this same person got rid of.

    --Actually no it's not. In fact, I've stated on numerous occasions that the scenarios were not meant as a replacement for the seers.

    While I understand not everyone enjoys the scenario, it is a very poor idea to misrepresent information when trying to make a point simply to justify an arguement. We want the negative feedback from players on this as it will greatly help us when crafting future scenarios. But posts filled with innaccurate and inflamatory information don't help at all.

    As for the town invasions themselves, the players will have the opportunity very soon to rid their towns of these foul creatures once and for all. That done, the next scenario does not have town invasions. :)

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:43 PM

    July 10, 2001

    OSI: More News from the Community Front

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    More News from the Community Front

    It's time for an update on the Community Relations Department hiring process!

    To fill anyone in who hasn't been following the Community Department here at Origin, I'll recap a bit. Typically we have a three-person OCR team, consisting of a Community Manager, a Community Coordinator and the Website Content Editor/Writer. All three of these jobs are extremely time-consuming and vital to the service as a whole, since without the community, we have no service.

    So on to the point at hand - a couple weeks ago two of our community team moved on to other opportunities, and I took on the role of Community Manager. I have been conducting a search for the right people to hold the positions of Community Coordinator and Website Content Writer, and it has been a really tough search! We have such a passionate community, many of whom would add greatly to the Origin team. How do we pick only two people out of nearly a hundred responses?

    Well, after two weeks of reading resumes and conducting interviews, I have chosen my Website Content Editor, and I'm thrilled to say that she accepted the position just yesterday. She will be moving onto my team within the next two weeks, and I'm really looking forward to introducing her to the community! :)

    And I am close -- so close -- to finding the right Community Coordinator. However, the choice has not been an easy one, and I can't make anything public just yet.

    Until I have these two people on my team, I'm doing my best to maintain the essential duties of each position - i.e making sure the players on the boards are updated and notified of changes, making sure the important news announcements are made on the site, and seeing that the dev team has the information they need and the exposure they need to make the right decisions for the game. However, I have had to choose my priorities carefully, since my time is limited and there is so much to do.

    I know many of you are anxiously awaiting the news of who will replace Melantus and who will take over the site, and I must say I'm anxiously awaiting the moment when I can give you that news! Building this team has been my number one priority since I took on the role of Community Manager, and it's a task that is too important to rush. I hope that my next Comments from the Team will be a more thorough introduction of the new community folks, and that in time, you'll get to know them as well as any of us!

    Amy "Cynthe" Sage
    Community Manager
    Ultima Online
    ORIGIN Systems

    Posted by Nobody at 4:47 PM

    Storytelling with Meredith

    Please join us this Wednesday, July 11th, 6:30pm PST at The Golden Globe Theater to share stories with old friends and new. Share your tales of bravery fighting savages, orcs or both! Or perhaps a touching story of true love. If you're feeling daring give a try at our game, Story Roulette. By taking three words from the audience you spin an original story right on the spot!

    A map to the Golden Globe Theater, in Golden [on Trammel, north of the Justice Shrine. -Ed.], can be found here.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:46 PM

    July 9, 2001

    The Identity of the Ghost, Revealed

    Posted by Mirabel to the Darkmor Forum of Heaven's Forge:

    "A small but hardy band gathered at the Hospital today to track down the secrets of the restless spirit plaguing Heaven's Forge. I had hired the grandmaster Cartographer Pabo to lead our search, and the group was prepared for whatever might stand between us and learning the truth.

    Pabo led us to the first map, it led to a small island off the coast, not even large enough for a house. After digging up the chest and dispatching many beasts, I uncovered a journal wrapped in a magical cloak. I handed it to Opalescense to peruse while I continued sorting the items, and she read portions of it aloud to the group.

    The journal was written by a man named Garolyn Megiltura, and it detailed his life as Swordmaster to King Joran, elven ruler, long ago, of a city near what is now Yew... and also the elf we had discovered a while ago to be Sleath's father! If this Garolyn was the ghost, it certainly explained how he knew of Sleath, myself, and Darkmor... but it did not explain his hostility. As Opal continued to read, however... She discovered that Garolyn had not approved of the political marriage between Joran and his shadow elf Queen.. and that this had led him to plot against the lady. We dispatched the last of the monsters and, closing the journal, warily moved onward to the next map.

    This second map led us deep into the jungle. The combat was just as fierce, and we found a second book.

    We returned to the hospital to read its contents in a safer environment, as one should not dawdle in the jungles.

    This journal was signed 'Garolyn Saurar' - which means, in elvish 'Foul One'. We all listened raptly as Opal read.. Sleath became more and more upset as he heard of Garolyn's traitorous acts toward his family, and as the journal detailed the kidnapping of the Queen, the treachery of the Drow who murdered King Joran, and the birth of Sleath's brother in captivity... He became very upset and rushed from the building. I followed but could not find him, he had disappeared into the valley. Opal was also becoming rather upset, but it was not clear exactly why. I assumed she merely was disturbed by the obviously demented nature of the journals. We moved on to the third and final map, without Sleath as he had not returned, all of us feeling a bit apprehensive.

    The third map was also in the jungle, and as we were missing Sleath and a couple of others who had helped on the earlier maps, we were a little shorthanded, and had some people visit the spirit realm briefly. We quickly recovered and collected the items from the chest. This time, there was a box. It contained a journal and a pair of earrings with 15 rubies set in an intricate setting. We returned to the hospital, and divided up the money accumulated from the slaughter of the chest guardians, because several people needed to leave. It had been a long day. Opal, Pabo, Taliesin and I went off in search of Sleath, and we found him over the ghost's burial site in the cavern in the Valley. He was waving his kryss at the air and screaming 'Show yourself! Murderer!' -- and I worried for his sanity.. but then the ghost appeared. Opal read the journal aloud, and the ghost alternately cavorted around, unrepentant.. argued with Opal and Sleath, who could speak to him.. and seemed to genuinely mourn some of his actions. He seemed confused, and not entirely in control of his mind.

    The third journal detailed the events Janilla had spoken of last week, the prisoner revolt and Garolyn's part in it... and ended with Garolyn's ultimate refusal to accept responsibility for any of his life's actions. He said he was "blessed" with the ability to choose the right side.. and wise enough to know when to leave. It would seem he was a bit too late in leaving the Bloodswords, as it resulted in his demise.

    The final sentences of the journal explained the ruby earrings in the box. They had belonged to Isabella, the shadow elf Queen, mother to Sleath. They were a wedding gift from her husband. Opal grew very pale as she read it, and reached beneath her tunic to reveal the necklace she wore. It, also, was described in the journal.. the second part of the set Joran gave his bride. And the only part Isabella managed to hold onto in her flight from Garolyn. It had been given to Opal by her mother! This, along with other evidence, confirmed it.. she and Sleath were both the children of Isabella. Half-siblings. The lady did not die in the woods near Britain. She had managed to survive, make a life for herself, and bear a daughter. Opal and Sleath seemed unable to absorb this new information immediately. Time will tell what it means.

    We were left with the decision of what to do with this ghost. Sleath, for his part, wanted to see Garolyn's soul suffer eternally. He refused to have anything to do with the thought of resurrecting him, and told Opal that it was her decision. Leaving Opal and I alone with the ghost, he returned to Darkmor. Opal's compassionate nature overtook her, and with a great effort, she restored him.

    Garolyn, once called Swordmaster, Foul One, Betrayer of Lord and Land... returned to the land of the living at the hands of those who had every reason to hate him for what he had done. Perhaps he will find some redemption for the crimes he has committed. I think, however, he had best stay away from Darkmor and its Lord."

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 7:42 AM

    July 8, 2001

    OSI: 89th Spotlight: Orc Chess Game

    Recently, the 89th Spotlight was published to the Ultima Online Web site. Below are the first couple of paragraphs from this new tale:

    Orc Chess Game

    If anyone tells you chess is a game for intellectuals, they haven't seen it played the Ultima Online way. Join us for the story of a battle of brains and brawn as we watch the unlikely pairing of orcs and humans in an intellectual battle to the death.
    "'Motherless swine!'

    "'Dum dum pugdung femmy!'

    Insults and empty bottles hurled back and forth. It was another typical night in the Hungry Halfling.

    "Emma Frost and Tiger Dream had lived in relative peace and quiet on the border with the Stormreaver Clan. Occasionally they would watch the war bands as they passed their way, striking further and further in their quest for Empire. Until recently, the Orc Horde had ignored their small village, tucked between the borders of Yew and the Clan. By providing their services as metalsmiths and alchemists of no small skill, they had earned the good graces of the Clan. Lately, however, the restless Horde had begun to harass the two women and their retainers.

    "Tonight was typical. Trying to find a drink, the two had settled into seats at the Hungry Halfling, only to be accosted by filthy marauders seeking to make 'lil Orcs' with them. Throwing a drink into the face of the rudest only resulted in another of the bar brawls that made the Hungry Halfling famous.

    "Qog jumped up atop the table before the two women, brandishing his great axe. Quickly, Tiger yanked hard on the tablecloth, bringing Qog crashing to the ground. A flash of silver and Emma pressed the kryss, oozing green with venom, against Qog's throat.
    The remainder of this story can be read here.

    Posted by Nobody at 2:51 AM

    Archer Adventure

    The following announcement was posted to the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    Though not an officially sponsored event, the Society of Archers (S|A) would like to inform you of a planned "Archer Adventure" this Monday (July 9). Beginning in the early evening (approx 5:00pm PST) a number of S|A Baja Chapter Archers are going to unite together and lead a pack hunt. All Archers are most welcome and urged to attend. The more we get together the more dangerous of place we will conquer. Supplies will be available for sale at the S|A Baja Chapter house prior to leaving. We will be using UOChat (chatroom "Archers Unite!") to join up with and stay in contact with reinforcements that arrive after we head out. Since we are in the process of moving houses we will meet up through the chat rather than at a set location. I, along with several other S|A Members, will be in attendance until the last Archer leaves. Hopefully we will stay in force throughout the night. If you can't come until late, please DO! Whenever you can make it. We hope to have a party together and "Archers Unite!" activated well into the late hours. Come join forces fellow Archers, let this be a night to remember!

    Theoran
    Head of Baja Chapter
    Society of Archers S|A

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:34 AM

    July 6, 2001

    The Princess of Thieves (Trammel)

    The following notice was posted to the door of the Darkmor Tavern (in Heaven's Forge) a few days back:



    Many subsequently gathered at the Ring of Steel (Virtue) Tower on Sunday, July 1, to delve into Wrong and question this Princess. To read a full report of the events following, read the Darkmor Tavern Board, here.

    Posted by Thellaren at 8:21 PM

    July 5, 2001

    OSI: OSI's Orcs versus the Savages Quest Continues with Fighting Back

    The Ultima Online Web site's BNN section has published the latest chapter in OSI's "Orcs versus the Savages" Quest scenario, here. The entire story is reproduced below.

    Fighting Back

    Jogug kicked a stone and watched as it skittered across the floor and hit the cave wall. He hated this place. No humies to bash, never enough food, and the cave reeked, even by orc standards. He mumbled some irate complaints to the other orcs in the room, although most of them were too busy with complaints of their own to listen.

    The cave had been carved out (actually, blown out) by the orc bombers and reinforced by the orc choppers. In truth, it was well built (again, by orc standards), but many of the orcs had grown weary of it. Orcs cared little for the beauty of the outdoors, but Jogug missed the warmth of the sun and the openness of his home near Cove. Jogug wasn't exactly the bravest of orcs, but he had had enough of this hiding. And so had his lord, Sorgulg.

    Jogug quieted his mumbling as Sorgulg raised his voice.

    "NO!" the orc lord shouted. "No more hiding!"

    This was followed by more shouting from the orc mage Opathu. Jogug could not hear the words exactly, but he could tell the mage disagreed with Sorgulg, preferring the safety of the cave. Jogug thought the sentiment typical of the mages. He didn't trust any orc that didn't bash things with an ax, although he did want to get his hands on some of those bottles the orc bombers kept. He liked the noises they made.

    "NO! We go without you den. Take back home. You hide like mongbat if yub want to," Sorgulg retorted, his temper quickly rising.

    Jogug knew his lord and the mage well enough to know what would happen next, and was not surprised in the least when he heard Opathu yelp, no doubt dodging an attack from Sorgulg. Jogug would have smiled at the thought, and in fact was about to, when he heard the orc mage yell for help.

    The ground shook a bit. Jogug suddenly realized what was coming, and his smile quickly faded into a frown. Gathering what courage he had (which wasn't much), Jogug prepared for a fight. The ground shook again, this time much more forcefully, as a hulking brute of an orc entered the room. Easily twice Jogug's mass, with muscles bulging, the large orc immediately went to enter the room where Sorgulg and the mage were arguing. Jogug, trembling despite his attempts to hide his fear, stood to intercept the brute.

    The huge orc smiled a wicked grin as it picked Jogug completely off the ground and threw him headlong into another group of orcs. The brutes had a habit of throwing any orcs who got in their way, since it not only made them feel powerful, but watching the smaller orcs grapple with whatever creature they had been thrown onto was really great fun. The brute was just getting ready to hurl another hapless orc when Sorgulg stormed out, boldly striding right past the imposing orc.

    Jogug quickly followed Sorgulg as they left the cave, wanting nothing more to do with the hulking orc or those that wished to stay in the cave. He liked the idea of clomping more painted humies and more importantly, he wanted his home back.

    "No more hiding," he thought, echoing his Lord's words and looking nervously back at the cave as another orc yelped and was thrown from the dark cavern.

    It was time to clomp!

    * * * *

    Duncan gathered the men and women of Cove into the Inn and waited for them all to settle down. The people were tired and weary from the fighting and it took him a while to secure their attention. Duncan was happy for the time to compose himself and gather his thoughts, since he knew the proposal he was about to give them would not be a popular one. Finally the room quieted and all eyes and ears went to Duncan.

    The young Paladin, who had only months ago just begun his questing, was suddenly acutely aware of all the faces watching him. How had he become the leader of this desperate group? He cleared his throat and began speaking, cautiously at first.

    "My friends, for weeks we have defended our town against these orc raids, hoping we could weather this terrible storm. Now these savages threaten our homes as well. It is time we took the fight to them and ended this nonsense before all of Cove is destroyed. Neither the orcs nor the savages seem willing or able to end this themselves... so it is now up to us."

    The Paladin paused for a moment, watching the faces of the townsfolk for any sign of reaction. He saw their eyes still focused on him, and continued his speech. Conviction began to creep into his voice as he realized that they were actually listening.

    "The time has come for us to leave the relative safety of our homes and take this fight to the orc fort! With these," the paladin held up a mask of orcish kin, "we can rid our land of the savages and put things back the way they were."

    At this point, one of the elders of the town jumped from his seat, glaring at the paladin. "Help the orcs? Are you mad!? We've endured their attacks for generations; we'd be better off helping these savages! They're at least human... maybe we can reason with them!"

    Duncan had expected this. He knew the deep-rooted hatred the residents of Cove held towards the orcs. But he also knew there would be no negotiations with the savages. The savages were intelligent, cunning, crafty, and were better equipped than the orcs. He had also heard rumors of savages mounted on huge, unfamiliar beasts and powerful savage spellcasters capable of raining lighting down on their enemies from the skies. That, coupled with their terrifying prowess against the most powerful of beasts made the orcs seem to be the lesser of two evils. Before Duncan could respond, the elder spoke again.

    "We have already made up our minds, Paladin. We will use their own war paint to blend in with these savages. They'll never know who we are, and we can destroy the orcs once and for all." With that, the elder left the room, and at least half the gathered people followed behind him.

    Duncan watched them leave and wondered if this moment would mean the difference between living with the savages or the orcs. Not a happy prospect either way, but he knew he had to do what he could to see that they were not left to the hands of the savages. Turning back to the remaining townsfolk, Duncan began to lay out his plans, and handed out orc masks to those who would fight with the orcs. Those without masks would remain to defend the town.

    The time had come to drive the intruders out for good.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:56 PM

    OSI: Savage Paint and Orc Mask Info/Bugs

    Calandryll, Designer of Ongoing Content for Ultima Online, recently posted the following to the YahooGroups Ultima Online e-mail list:

    Savage Paint and Orc Mask Info/Bugs

    I posted this on uo.com and wanted to make sure you all saw it as well.

    Since there have been quite a few posts about the savage paint and the orc masks, I figured it would be a good idea to post some more information about them to explain why they are doing some of the things they do.

    Healing problems with paint and masks. This is a bug, something I thought I had fixed last week, but I missed another way it can happen. I tracked that one down too (and found a really, really, stupid coding mistake on my part) and it's fixed. QA is looking at it and if all goes well it will go in next week.

    Paint disappearing when you die. This is not a bug. There are two reasons for this. One is that the system automatically reverts you back to your original body type when you die as part of the polymorph code. This is deep in the C code of the servers and to be perfectly honest, wasn't something I felt comfortable having changed given the problems it could cause. One of the goals of the content team is to touch existing systems as little as possible. The other reason is because we want the paint to be an item that cooks can sell over and over again. Which is also why it wears off after about a week.

    Kirins and Unicorns. If you put on savage paint you can't ride a kirin or unicorn. This is a bug and it'll be one of the first things I look at when I get into the office on Thursday. I am pretty sure I know what is going on with this and if I am right it should not prove difficult to fix. I'll update this tomorrow in case it's more than I thought.

    Masks/Paint exploding after attacking an orc or savage. The mask and paint will explode if you put it on after attacking (or being attacked by) an orc or savage respectively if they are still in your aggressor list. This is as designed and done to avoid certain exploits. Think of this as the magic properties of the mask/paint knowing that you have recently assaulted one of it's kin. If you have a mask/paint and attack an orc/savage, wait a few minutes before putting the mask/paint on. This is especially true if you kill an orc and get a mask as loot. Do not put it on right away!

    Can't track players who are wearing savage paint. This is a bug. We're looking into fixing this as well as the other new scenario monsters that cannot be tracked.

    The original post also had two unconfirmed bugs that I did not copy here because I've confirmed that they are not the result of savage paint or orc masks. We are looking into them still though.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Nobody at 11:57 AM

    July 2, 2001

    Next Scenario Publish

    Posted to several UO Community sites:

    Because of the recent publish and the holiday (July 4, Wednesday) we will be publishing the next scenario publish today, active tomorrow morning on all shards except for Chessie. Chessie will get the publish sometime later this week. My apologies to those on Chessie for the delay, but given publish 12 and the holiday, we feel this is the best course. I'll keep you posted should anything change.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content
    In other related news, the following picture was posted on the UO Stratics Baja Board, reported being found on female savages.

    Posted by Thellaren at 9:40 PM

    Lum the Mad Leaves His Own Site

    Lum the Mad, at his site of the same name, posted a farewell of sorts today. He's moving on to a job with an online gaming company, and felt it would be a conflict of interests to both work for a company and be a direct part of a rant site.

    The introduction to his article is below, and the entire article can be found here.

    LUM SELLS OUT

    Short version: I've taken a job as a tools programmer with Mythic Entertainment, and will be working on behind-the-scenes stuff related to making Dark Age of Camelot's customer service better. To quote my new co-worker Sanya "Tweety" Thomas, "please direct all complaints about me being a sell out corporate whore to www.I Don't See You Paying For My Health Insurance.com."

    As part of my new position, since ranting about our competitors would be wildly inappropriate, I'm turning this website over to its other writers.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:18 AM

    July 1, 2001

    Lions and tigers and CENTAURS!! Oh my!

    Again via Stratics: Centaurs on Test Center 6

    Centaurs have appeared on Test Center 6. You can find them in the Serpentine Passage there. As far as I found out they are wearing bows and know how to handle them, and they also seem to be using magic.




    As soon as more information is available about them, we will let you know on our Centaur Page. Thanks to Patricia for that heads up.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 10:09 AM

    Bartenders coming? From Stratics:

    From Stratics: When Bartenders will show up:

    In reply to a query as to when bartenders will show up in UO, Calandryll (UO Designer, Ongoing Content) replied :

    They'll be in the first week of the next scenario. No specifc date for that yet though. More than likely, there will be a 4 week time off between the end of this scenario and the next one.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:57 AM

    June 30, 2001

    Melantus Leaves OSI

    Melantus, outgoing Online Community Coordinator for Ultima Online, is leaving OSI. He posted an impromptu "farewell" yesterday, as a response to a player's good wishes. The original post is here, but is reproduced below:

    Re: Melantus: Good luck, Goodbye, and Thanks. NT [re: Cujo]

    Thanks, everyone. :) You will hear from me again someday.

    Melantus has left the building.

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    Melantus@uo.com

    Posted by Nobody at 2:29 AM

    Publish 12 delayed

    I just read this at Stratics, via the UO website, so I copied and pasted.....

    Publish 12 Delayed
    This was posted on FYI, Update Ctr on the official UO Site :

    After the release of Publish 12 to the Chesapeake shard yesterday (June 28th), issues related to the event scenario data required that the shard be reverted to a time before the publish was released. We regret this necessity, and are working to see that this problem is solved before Publish 12 is released again.

    We are currently targeting to release the publish to the Chesapeake shard early next week, and we will update the players on the schedule when we are confident that the issue has been addressed.

    Although this publish does contain the eagerly awaited veteran rewards system, please remember that to ensure the system is released smoothly, we will wait until all public shards have received Publish 12 before the veteran rewards system will be activated. Once all shards are running Publish 12, and we are confident that the veteran rewards system is functioning properly, we will begin to activate veteran rewards systematically on pre-determined shards. Please note that this means that players will not be able to choose rewards immediately once the publish is received. We are working to see that this delay will be as short as possible, and we appreciate your patience.

    [The preceeding was originally posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site. -Ed.]

    Posted by Nobody at 1:24 AM

    June 28, 2001

    OSI: Orc Scenario Continues with Conflicts of Conscience

    Calandryll posted the following notes about the latest BNN article on the YahooGroups Ultima e-mail list:

    Conflicts of Conscience

    New story is up. This one brought to you by Vex. Apologies for the delay, I've been busy helping out with the Chessie publish.

    This one has a LOT of foreshadowing for the next scenario, as well as the clue for next week.
    The article he's talking about is here. It's the latest chapter of the ongoing multi-Shard Orc Quest scenario. The entire chapter is reproduced below:
    Guilhem marveled privately at the craftsmanship of the city, though his contempt for its creators prevented his showing it. Instead, he affected a sneer of disdain as he strode its streets, being careful to make no eye contact with anyone, and ignoring the stares that followed in his wake.

    He would have liked to try out one of the keenly honed swords, or even one of the more exotic weapons displayed in the merchants' booths. But he had more pressing matters on his mind, and his role required him to use the more primitive weapons of the savages. The savages were loath to rip holes in the sides of mountains and poison the ground by smelting ore. Instead, they fashioned axes and spears out of rock and wood and bits of strong vine. They hunted for food and used everything they killed. When they broke down an encampment to move on, mere hours would remove every remaining trace that a tribe had once resided there.

    Not much else caught his eye as he wound his way through the bazaar en route to his destination. He had made this journey many times, and the novelty of the city had long since worn off. Finally, he strode up the long stairs, sneering at the guards. In the courtyard, he washed his hands and feet in the center fountain, seemingly oblivious to the stares and small gasps generated by his horrible breach of protocol. Guilhem considered urinating on the cobblestones, but decided that would be too far across the line. As his status in this strange army was low and his position tenuous, Guilhem was hardly in a position to push their limits.

    "You!" A strangely dressed human, one of Guilhem's new Master's lackeys, said, as if even addressing Guilhem was distasteful. "Clean that mess off." He tossed a dirty oil rag at Guilhem, who caught it without breaking his stare at the other man.

    "These are my badges of honor and status," he replied. "I wear them as is my duty."

    "That," retorted the lackey, "is food. Why those people insist on wearing their dinner I will never understand. But the Master says if you don't clean up before your audience, I am to have the palace guards wash you. Forcefully. Use the fountain, since you've already defiled it."

    Guilhem glowered but didn't say another word as he turned to comply. It took only a few moments with the cloth to rub off the painted lines and swirls and glyphs. He felt naked without them, more naked than he expected he would. Perhaps it was his time spent with the so-called savages or his growing dislike for the minions of his new Master, but he found himself looking forward more and more to donning the paint.

    That done, Guilhem followed the other man into the palace proper. He was left in a room, sumptuously decorated with wall hangings and thick carpeting and a small fortune in marble statues and brass lamps. He crossed his arms, shifted his weight to his heels, and stood in the center of the room, awaiting his audience. After a short delay that Guilhem was certain was caused simply by social custom, he was bade into the Master's chamber.

    Guilhem could never get accustomed to the constant whirring and clicking and lights in this room. He hated it; it felt unworldly to him. A huge oak dining table was laid out with what must have passed for a feast for the Master's allies, but Guilhem felt no desire to eat. Guilhem truly hated his new role and often pondered if the payment was worth it.

    His thoughts were quickly driven to other matters as the Master spoke to him, its grating voice assaulting Guilhem's ears. "Nice of you to respond so quickly to my summons."

    Guilhem nodded his head but said nothing, fearing his voice might betray the disgust washing over him in waves.

    "Eat while we talk," the Master said in its eternally gravelly voice as the whirring and clicking quickened in pace. Guilhem interpreted the statement as an order, and approached the table. Nothing looked particularly palatable, so he selected a whole cooked fish and proceeded to tear the skin from it. Guilhem discarded half of the fish skin onto an empty platter, and proceeded to peel away layers of the succulent fish flesh with his fingers and pop them into his mouth.

    "Well, let us get on with it, then," the lackey said, scowling. "What have you to report?"

    "Everything is well, m'lord," Guilhem replied, speaking to the Master and not to the lackey. "The Tribes are driving the greenskins from their camps. The land is bountiful and will make a good home for them."

    The other human spoke before Guilhem could continue. "Have you any news from your advance scouts?"

    "We have seen cities. They are too deep in greenskin territory for us to risk scouts yet. We have seen them from a distance. The architecture is obviously beyond the greenskin's capabilities. Whoever lives in them look to be as civilized and advanced as you, m'lord." Guilhem's expression remained carefully blank as he studied the other human's face for any reaction. In response, the lackey merely nodded, completely unsurprised by Guilhem's defiance.

    The whirring and clicking stopped for a moment before the Master spoke again. "The tribes are to continue their attacks. Drive the greenskins from their homes. Take over their territory." As the Master ponderously issued orders, the lackey retrieved a scroll and a quill from its desk and began to mark it carefully.

    Guilhem was dismissed and hurried to another, stranger portion of the palace, where the smell of magic was strong indeed. He presented his orders and was rewarded with a bag containing some jars of paint. Just as quickly, he was escorted to the palace gates, and began the journey back to the Clan. He repainted his body as soon as he left the city, and returned to the village. The last of the orcs would be driven out of the land, and maybe they would take out that other civilized race in the process. He had much work ahead.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:56 PM

    Challice Tower Mall to Open: Dinner and Casino

    The following announcement from Jimpha was posted to the UO Stratics Web site:

    Challice Tower Mall to Open: Dinner and Casino

    The New Challice Tower Mall, located East of the Skara/Brit Crossroads will be having it's Grand Opening July 1. We will have games, dinner and vendors for your enjoyment. There is a meeting area you can sit back and relax and talk with friends, or gamble in the Challice Casino.

    We at the Challice are looking for Vendors to fill the Mall. The Special part about our Vendors is that it is for Craftsman only. No more searching for that GM armor, or house add-ons, or GM leather, they will all be located in one location. So if you are a Craftsman and wish to place a vendor at the Challice Mall, feel free to ICQ the Owner/Operator, Jimpha Rosua at 21113603. The charge for Vendor placement is 30k, a one time fee.

    We are located at 27'14" S, 32'58" W http://members.theglobe.com/jimpha_rosua/map.jpg

    Some on July 1st, or any time if you see me, Jimpha around town, ask for a rune or gate to the Mall, or to place a Vendor.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:37 PM

    Orc Multi-Shard Quest Extended to 9 Weeks

    Calandryll, Designer of Ultima Online's Ongoing Content, posted the following note to the YahooGroups Ultima e-mail list:

    Just wanted to make sure everyone knew that this scenario is going to be 9 weeks long (instead of the planned 8). I'll explain why (basically it had to do with splitting up week 4 into two weeks to give QA more time on week 5-8) when I write up my scenario document. But next week is not the final week.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:34 PM

    Announcing Mizuho's Global Opening

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Announcing Mizuho's Global Opening

    We are pleased to announce the global opening of the Mizuho shard on June 29th at 11:00 pm local time (JST). Mizuho is the 9th Southeast Asian Ultima Online shard and our 23rd shard worldwide. The name Mizuho dates from ancient times, when Japan was called "Land of Mizuho". Mizuho stands for beautiful water, and Japan has been long famous for its rich rice harvest.

    As a result of our localized shard policy, Mizuho has been open only to players located in Japan for the last two months to allow local citizens to build a community base and to allow us to ensure a satisfactory level of local support.

    The Game Master hours for the Mizuho Shard can be found by clicking here. For information on the shards maintenance schedule, click here.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:29 PM

    Ultima Online Web Site

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    UO Concerns Policy

    For players who want to submit feedback concerning Customer Support personnel (whether positive or negative), the uoconcerns@uo.com mailbox has been created for this purpose.

    In the past, while all mails sent to this mailbox have been read, we have not replied to these mails due in part to the volume of mail and the fact that our privacy policies dictate that when action is taken against a player or an employee, those actions are not made public. However, through posts on our message boards and mails into UO Concerns, we understand that some of our players feel the mails sent to this box are simply ignored, or even worse, unread.

    It is important for our customers to have faith in our support process, so as of today, we have added two new steps to our methods of handling uoconcerns@uo.com mail.

    First, all submissions to uoconcerns@uo.com will receive an automated response informing the customer that the email has been received. The automated response will explain the purpose of the UO Concerns email address, and list the criteria used to evaluate if the email is considered a legitimate compliment or complaint.

    And second, all emails will receive a response from the staff member reviewing the email. If a complaint is verified, the player should receive a direct response from the CRMD (Customer Relations Management Dept.), and the assurance that the appropriate corrective action will be taken. These instances will then be discussed with the CRMD member involved and treated as a performance issue.

    If a complaint is not verified, or if the GM was found innocent of wrongdoing, the customer should be contacted with an explanation as to why there was no violation found.

    If a compliment is received, the compliment will be documented in the employee's work history, and the customer should be thanked for the feedback.

    Types of Responses

    There are three types of responses that will be sent in regards to UO Concerns emails.

    1). Incorrect mailbox

    The response explains that the email was not sent to the proper address. The customer should be directed to the appropriate address to contact. There are several other avenues of communication that may be more appropriate, including:
    • support@uo.com for Ultima Online gameplay questions
    • tech@uo.com for tech support issues
    • admin@uo.com for all issues pertaining to in-game suspensions and terminations
    • uobilling@uo.com for account related questions
    • the MyUO Forums for suggestions and game ideas
    2). Requires more information
    The staff member responds to the concern with a request for more information regarding the issue. We will only act on emails that provide the account name that interacted with the Support Representative.

    3). Resolution of the Situation
    The email is considered valid, and the customer is contacted with notification of the resolution of the situation.

    What constitutes a valid UO Concerns email?

    We will only review emails that are submitted with the login name of the account involved in the Customer Service interaction. If a player refuses to provide their account name, the email will not be considered valid. Requiring a player to submit their account name allows us to more thoroughly research the issue.

    Important information that should be included:
    • The account name (EA employees will never ask for passwords) of the account you used when interacting with a GM.
    • Date, Time, and Shard where the incident took place.
    • An explanation of the reason why you called a GM.
    • What type of service you received, and what GM took your call.
    • The type of resolution you would have preferred.
    • Any additional information that is relevant to the situation.
    All valid emails will be noted in the players account history, with the submitted feedback as well as the reviewing staff member's findings.

    Its important to us to see that our level of commitment to our players is high, and that our customers feel their concerns are heard. We hope that these changes will work to show our commitment to the Ultima Online playerbase and community.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:27 PM

    Good News & Bad News about Chesapeake & the Latest Patch

    Two related notations about Cheapeake and the latest patch, which included some "dormant" Vet rewards goodies. First, the good news, originally posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Chesapeake Publish Update

    We have published the changes listed in Testing for Next Update to the Chesapeake shard, and the shard will be brought down for a brief maintenance at 12:00 pm CDT, allowing these changes to take effect. We will update further as to the publish schedule for the remaining shards, and the changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.
    The, the following three notices were posted soon after to the Shard Issues page.

    Bad news post number 1:
    Chesapeake Shard

    The Chesapeake shard will be brought internal to investigate issues regarding the publish released earlier today (June 28th). We will be working to bring it back up as soon as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience.
    Post number 2, teasing us:
    Chesapeake Returns

    The Chesapeake Shard has returned to service and is now available. We apologize for the inconvenience this interruption may have caused.
    And post number 3, the kicker:
    Chesapeake Being Reverted

    Due to an issue with the publish interfering with the event-related data on the Chesapeake shard, the shard was brought down at approximately 3:00 pm CDT. The shard is being brought back up now, and will be reverted to approximately 11:30 am CDT. We regret this necessity, and we will work diligently to see that all issues are resolved as soon as possible. We will update as to the publish schedule when we are confident the system is working optimally.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:24 PM

    Calandryll's Comments on Savages

    citizenKane2 has compiled some recent notations from Calandryll, Ultima Online's Designer of Ongoing Content, over at UO Stratics, which I've reposted below:

    Calandryll's Comments on Savages

    Calandryll made several comments about the new "Savages".

    When asked on UO Discussion Boards how "Savages" could kill dragons, Calandryll remarked:
    Well, the fiction for it is that savages are adept at taking on large (think things like wooly mammoths - or in UO terms, dragons) and/or deamonic creatures (deamons, nightmares, etc.). They understand where the weak spots are and are able to do more damage. I don't consider this a nerf though, but it does represent some challenges for tamers. You can't simply bring in two dragons and let them run into the fort...they'll die. Now you have to keep track of your pets, heal them, and make sure they don't take on more than they can handle.
    When asked how many different coloured tribal masks there are, Calandryll said:
    Close to 30 total.
    An interesting bit of information on the "Savage" names. Calandryll said:
    The majority of savage names are named after OSI staff, mostly Dev and QA. I changed the names to make them sound more in keeping with what a savage might be called. There is one called Kahl too. :).

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:03 AM

    Vet rewards returneth!

    Well, on Chesapeake anyway. I just read this at Stratics!

    Taken from UO FYI

    We have published the changes listed in Testing for Next Update to the Chesapeake shard, and the shard will be brought down for a brief maintenance at 12:00 pm CDT, allowing these changes to take effect. We will update further as to the publish schedule for the remaining shards, and the changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:43 AM

    June 27, 2001

    Storytelling With Meredith Tonight

    Please join us tonight (Wednesday) at 6:30pm PST at the Golden Globe Theater (located behind The Golden Brew) to share tales with old friends and new!

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 8:44 AM

    OSI changes Volunteer Tribute Structure

    It looks like OSI has updated the Volunteer Shrine, now including a tribute to Companions in addition to Counselors, Volunteer Testers, Seers, and Elders. The structure is located just east of the Counselors' Guild in Britain. Make sure you both single- and double-click on all the items when you're there.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 8:23 AM

    OSI's Orcs versus Savages Multi-Shard Quest

    Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna, Ultima Online's Designer of Ongoing Content and mastermind behind the current multi-shard Orc quest scenario, posted the following teaser yesterday to the YahooGroups Ultima e-mail list:

    Yew Orc Fort

    For those of you that felt the spawn in the Yew fort was too high and were posting about it a few weeks ago...

    Please go there after tomorrow's publish (and after the existing spawn is killed) and let me know what you think. ;)

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content
    I went into Baja this morning, wandering around Skara Brae on Trammel, and came across this Savage:


    I was able to only stick around to take a sceeenshot, but stay tuned for more reports (combat ability, locations, quantities, etc.) on these Savages as they come in.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 8:14 AM

    OSI: 2D and 3D Client Patch

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    2D and 3D Client Patch

    We will be releasing a client patch on Tuesday, June 26th at approximately 5:45 pm CDT. An issue with the patch released earlier today (June 26th) required some players to alter a line in their uo.cfg file in order to run the client successfully. This patch contains a fix for that problem.

    The current versions should now be 3.0.2g (2D client) and 3.0.2j Build 67 (3D client).

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.mcafee.com/myapps/vso/default.asp.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:06 AM

    June 26, 2001

    A lot of new info over Stratics!

    Shard sent us the following observation (which I had to repost because our news script had trouble with a special symbol in his name...sorry Shard!):

    A lot of new info over Stratics!

    The new "In Dev" has some interesting stuff, including casting spells without equipping your spellbook! Bajeez!
    The In Development page is at http://update.uo.com/indev.html.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:18 PM

    OSI: Publish 12 Update

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish 12 Update

    While we are committed to releasing Publish 12 as soon as possible, several issues have arisen in testing that we feel need to be addressed before it can be released. This update (which includes veteran rewards) is still our priority right now, and we are targeting to release Publish 12 to one shard later this week.

    That being said, we are aware that the veteran rewards system still has issues, and while we appreciate the need to work quickly, we are more concerned with seeing that our update is stable and polished. To help us accomplish both of those goals, Publish 12 is still active on the external test shard Test Rewards, and we encourage all players to send any bugs found there to tcbugs@uo.com. As always, non Test Shard-related bugs should be sent to uobugs@uo.com.

    A full list of the changes included in this publish can be found in Testing for the Next Update.

    Considering the complexities of the rewards system, we will wait until all public shards have received Publish 12 before the veteran rewards system will be activated. Once all shards are running Publish 12, and we are confident that the veteran rewards system is functioning properly, we will begin to activate veteran rewards systematically on pre-determined shards. Please note that this means that players will not be able to choose rewards immediately once the publish is received. We are working to see that this delay will be as short as possible, and we appreciate your patience.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:11 PM

    New Player Teachers Program

    The following anouncement from Elven Counsel was posted by Cymidei Fier to UO Stratics:

    New Player Teachers Program

    I am Elven Counsel. The new Lead Teacher for the New Player Teachers program now available. I am pleased to announce the guildstone is up and running for NPT=New Player Teachers. This program will assist young players and old alike to learn skills. The link to apply for teacher positions is http://www.uo-new-player.com. As lead teacher I hope to see you apply and be apart of a great new program that is in the works!

    I am thrilled with the new program! It brings the fire back in me that I lost months ago. I love to help others, and there is many more out there that do the same! Come apply! I am sure you will like it because the cordinator is real nice and it will give guidance to UO players that have questions on the game.

    You will need to apply on website or goto stratics.com and go in the irc room for #new-player-classes to talk to us interviewers. *smiles* Come on in and check it out anyway.

    Hope to see you there,
    Elven Counsel Lead Teacher of Baja Shard for New Player Teachers Guild and Program

    Posted by Nobody at 4:03 PM

    ImaNewbie finds a New Home at Stratics

    The following anouncement was posted by Xena Dragon to UO Stratics:

    ImaNewbie finds a New Home at Stratics

    I'm proud to announce that as of this week, Tryon's ImaNewbie has found a new home here on the Stratics network. Without further ado, because I know you addicts need your ImaNewbie now, here's the latest announcement:
    That's Right Folks, "the rumors of my death were greatly exaggerated", as the old saying goes. ImaNewbie is alive and well and happily ensconsed in his new home right here on the Stratics Network. The URL is the same as always so no need to modify your bookmarks, just get yur butts over to my site and check out the latest! Enjoy :)

    Added June 25th, 2001
    • Toon Episode #140: In Danger of Collapsing plus
    • Britannia Enquirer Vol 2, No. 4
    ImaNewbie does Britannia
    http://www.imanewbie.com/

    later...Tryon
    Welcome to Stratics Tryon!

    Posted by Nobody at 4:00 PM

    New Patch

    UO3D: Patch 66 List of Fixes (+ 2D Patch)

    The following are a list of changes/fixes to UO3D with Patch 66

    ***List of Fixes and Features for Release Version 66:***
    1. An toggle has been added to the Interface subcategory of the options gump that lets players use the old-fashioned style container gumps instead of the new versions.
    2. Sound effects play when you open and close container gumps.
    3. Shopping gumps should now be much, much faster.
    4. A zoom slider has been added to the quick menu.
    5. NPCs should no longer continue to walk in place after theyve stopped moving.
    6. Players can now turn off object handles under the Interface subcategory in the options gump.
    7. Object handles now stack in a certain order - more commonly needed items tend to be on top. For example, handles for corpses stack above all others.
    8. Object handles are now color coded re: red/blue/grey for mobiles depending on notoriety, other objects have gold handles.
    9. Speech and All-Names are now clickable for targeting, use, and attacking.
    10. The player can now disable having the paperdoll model animate.
    11. An issue whereby health bars would not update has been resolved.
    12. Objects dropped in a container should now show up at exactly the location they were dropped at.
    13. A problem where players would not be able to pick up objects has been resolved. This should also resolve problems players have had looting their corpse.
    14. Skills are alphabetically sorted for players using languages in the ASCII character set.
    15. Skill lock toggles will no longer go awry when a skill is moved from one group to another.
    16. Command macros should now save properly.
    17. The location of speech text over players heads has been adjusted.
    18. This patch also includes several fixes to resolve numerous other bugs and crashes reported by players.
    And here is the official announcement about the new client patch for both 2D and 3D versions:
    2D and 3D Client Patch

    We will be releasing a client patch on Tuesday, June 26th at approximately 1:30 pm CDT. This patch contains an interface update and various bug fixes.

    The current versions should now be 3.0.2f (2D client) and 3.0.2i Build 66 (3D client).

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.mcafee.com/myapps/vso/default.asp.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 2:37 PM

    June 25, 2001

    Lum the Mad Site Reports OSI Cancels Companion Program

    Arcadian Del Sol posted the following at the Lum the Mad Web site:

    YOU ARE THE WEAKEST LINK.G'BYE.

    Senior Companions and all the robed staff of the Ultima Online Companion Program have been given the heave-ho. This comes as a huge surprise to anybody who has been in a coma the past year.

    As of 1:45 today, I was told that my robe will be gone at 2:00. I was Regional Senior Companion [*SNIP*]. now I am just [a] companion. All AC's, RSC's, and SC's are losing their robes. Normal companion issues will be resolved by, get this, paging a GM. Why we didn't lose our robes when [counselors and seers] did, I do not know. Figured it might be worth note that there are no volunteer robes at all anymore.

    My guess as to why the actual player/companions still have powers? OSI is still struggling with a way to remove the code without breaking blacksmithing. Newsflash to OSI: It is already broken. For all we know this will fix it. I'm sure it wont be long before we start seeing new companions from India. The good news is that this means we will have full time in-game support on the Fourth of July.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:20 PM

    June 23, 2001

    Trumpets of Britannia

    The following was recently posted to UO Stratics, sent in by JuffaArchui:

    Apply now to join Britannians from all shards in celebrating the diversity of our land in Trumpets of Britannia, an enormous gathering to be held on the Pacific Shard on Saturday July 7. The deadline for applications has now been extended until July 1st. If you've got an inspiring or exciting story to tell, and would like to stand the chance of winning half a million gold pieces, submit your application now!

    We'll be celebrating our world on an unprecedented scale - by inviting 80 Britannians, who can be from any shard, to address the gathering. Each Britannian will bring with them one item to symbolise their life in our world.

    At the conclusion of The Trumpets of Britannia, we will compile books of all the addresses made by all Britannians at the event. The books will be shelved and made available for public viewing at the Gathered Spirits Tower, and published online for all to view as a lasting memory of the way of life in our world. If the event is successful enough, we may even be able to print real-life hard copies of the transcript, and send them to all participants.

    There will be a prize of half a million gold pieces (500 000 gold) for the most outstanding participant. This participant will be invited to make honourary addresses at other gatherings on Pacific and beyond.

    In order to qualify for participation in The Trumpets of Britannia, you must apply in advance. You can fill out our online application form at http://www.GatheredSpirits.com/gs/trumpets/ - you'll be required to submit your character information, the name of the item you'll be bringing with, as well as a brief extract giving us an idea of the type of address you'll make. The final application deadline is Saturday July 1.

    We would like to extend a special invitation to Britannians from all other shards. You don't have to be resident on Pacific to participate - the event will be even more successful if we have different perspectives from different worlds. If you have trouble creating or setting up a character on Pacific, or getting transport to the event, please do not hesitate to contact me through the webpage.

    More information about the event will be released to the general public later this week.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 11:24 AM

    June 22, 2001

    Testing for Next Update

    The following additions are currently In Testing for Next Update:

    Blue players within the Minax stronghold will be able to become unstuck from that location. Some blue players may have possibly logged out inside that stronghold before certain recent changes were put in to restrict blue player entry. This has caused some blue players to become stuck within the location.

    The Third Dawn zoom-in feature will receive the following changes:
    • Update range will automatically be changed in relation to the screen size and zoom factor. For example, if you zoom in really close to your character, your update range will be reduced to a small amount around your character since the other areas are no longer visible.

    • Objects that are out of range will appear as "greyed out" coloring. This will assist players with being able to better drop and pick up objects at the various zoom-in degrees.
    The lightning spell effect is receiving fixes for Third Dawn players, to make it appear during each use.

    A change is being added for the Third Dawn appearance of the White Wyrm body type.

    Vendor Buy/Sell menus will have been adjusted to work with Localization.

    A problem with NPC shopkeepers restocking their items has been fixed.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:50 PM

    Fourth Year Reward Pictures

    Calandryll released the following picture earlier on the UO.COM Discussion boards. It pertains to the Four Year Veteran Rewards that are currently in concept:

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:19 PM

    Changes to the Bola

    Calandryll had the following announcement about bolas to proclaim on the UO.COM Discussion Boards:

    I wanted to give everyone a heads up about this. We've changed the bola to not work against Ethereal mounts as we have gotten a few reports of them going wild because of the bola. After looking into it further, this is not actually the bola, it's the same bug that we are fixing for the next major publish. We're erring on the side of caution on this one.

    The change to the bola is temporary and as soon as the bug is fixed, we'll change the bola back.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:50 AM

    Fourth Year Veteran Rewards

    The following was just placed on the 'In Concept' section of the UO.COM site:

    ** Note ** This idea is currently in a "concept" phase, meaning we want to get feedback on it. However please understand that this idea may change to be quite different from this proposal when or if it becomes finalized. Also note that this proposal might not get put in at all, depending on factors in the design proces as well as the feedback we get from players. As more information becomes available about this concept idea, the update pages will become updated.

    As some players accounts approach four years in age, the question of whether UO will offer a set of fourth year rewards has been raised. We do intend to dedicate some resources to developing additional Reward items once the Veteran Rewards system is successfully launched. These items are not yet in development, and we are interested in getting feedback on these items from the players.

    NOTE: If you are a player with an account age near 48 months, please be aware that when you reach 48 months, you may be presented with the opportunity to choose another reward. The fourth year rewards may not be in production at that time, so if you wish to use that extra reward point on a fourth year reward, you must be sure not to use that point on a first, second, or third year reward!

    As a players account reaches 48 months of age, that player will receive an additional Reward choice. At a point soon in the future, we are looking to add another tier to the rewards choices, and the following items will become available to 48-month veterans:
    Dyeable Spellbook (a special spellbook that comes completely filled with all 64 spells)
    Only players whose accounts are 4 years old or older will be able to equip it. It can be dyed using the Leather Dye Tub.

    House Decoration Kits (bags containing eight decorative items suitable for use in player-owned houses)
    These will be deed-style add-ons. Some will consist of multiple pieces, and they cannot be manipulated using the Interior Decorators Toolkit. Others will be single-tile pieces and can be flipped and floated using the Interior Decorators Toolkit.

    There will be three themed sets to choose from:
    • Day of the Dead
    • - this set will include Halloween-themed decorations, including a skeleton in a coffin, a pool of fake blood, spiderwebs, skull candles, and scattered hay
    • Gardeners Delight
    • - this set consists of several plants and cacti (some potted, some not) and a decorative rock
    • Tavernkeeper Set
    • - this set includes a large fishing net, suitible as a wall hanging. Additional treasures include dyeable wall-mountable shields, a saddle on a saddlehorse, a large ships anchor, and a bar complete with openable half-door
    Magic Hat
    Intended for emergencies, the user can pull out desperately needed supplies, like a recall scroll, a small number of bandages, a few arrows or bolts, an orange, yellow, or black potion, a few magic reagents, an apple, or even a cute fluffy white bunny rabbit. This stylish treasure can be used once per day.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:24 AM

    June 21, 2001

    BNN: Bad Omens

    The next edition in the continuing saga of the orcs, BNN's 'Bad Omens' is now online:

    A group of crows screeched angrily and flew into the sky as the knight shooed them away from the corpse. He surveyed the area, looking for any evidence of the creature or creatures that had attacked the caravan. As he approached the body, he spotted an ax, covered in blood, laying in the dirt.

    "Orcs, mlord," the knight called out to his young leader, holding the ax high. The fact that the word "mlord" was spat out like a curse did not escape the young nobles detection.

    Jarvis turned to regard the speaker, trying with little success to hide his revulsion. This was the first time he had ever seen dead bodies this closely. He had only just recently been given command of a company of knights...a favor to his father from the local lord. Jarvis knew well enough that few of the knights respected him. Every day he listened to their jeers, spoken just loudly enough for the noble to overhear. He was determined to show no sign of weakness, after spending the last two weeks dealing with their snide remarks and thinly veiled insults. He would get the job done, and win their respect in the process.

    Jarvis surveyed the area, pushing aside his discomfort, looking for any signs of a survivor. After a thorough search, it was apparent the massacre had been complete. Not a single human had survived the attack. The entire caravan that had been sent to help reinforce Cove was destroyed completely. The stench of the dead lay thick in the air and Jarvis silently hoped he could maintain his composure as he bent low to examine the body of a fallen man. He glanced up at the sound of footsteps approaching. It was the ranger, the one man in the party who he actually liked.

    "Look at the holes in his armor, and that wound along his leg. Orcs dont make cuts like that," the ranger said, as if he was reading the young nobles mind.

    Jarvis noticed it too. Virtually all of the cuts were small, piercing attacks and slender slashes, not the usual large gash from an ax or the dents from an orcs club. Jarvis nodded grimly as the ranger continued.

    "My guess would be brigands. These attacks are too precise to be orcs."

    "We havent seen brigands in these parts for a long time, Dustin. Besides, they didnt take any of the valuables, just the food and other perishables. No, not brigands, someone...or something else did this," Jarvis said as he stood up, gaining confidence now that he was in his element.

    The young noble always fancied himself as tracker or a detective, not the knight that his father wished (and had forced) him to be. He much preferred the company of the free spirited scouts and trackers ("common men", as his father would say snobbishly) to the strict discipline of these knights.

    A hand on his shoulder pulled Jarvis from his thoughts. He stood up and faced the ranger, expecting him to disagree. After all, this was the rangers area of expertise, and he was just a nobleman! He should known no one here would listen to him. Instead, the ranger gave him an approving nod and smiled slightly.

    "Well done, Mlord. Well make a ranger out of you yet!"

    Pleased and more than a little surprised, Jarvis turned and was about to call out to the knights when he heard Dustin make a sound. Jarvis turned to regard Dustin. The rangers eyes were wide, staring at Dustin, his lips moving but no words escaping. Jarvis looked from Dustins face down to his chest, where a spear point was sticking out, covered in the rangers blood. The ranger fell to his knees, then to the ground, taking the spear with him. Jarvis would have gone to his friend to try to help him, but he stood transfixed as a large group of strange looking humans charged into the knights ranks.

    The enemy had finally shown itself.

    Posted by Thellaren at 4:46 PM

    June 20, 2001

    Bola Balls

    According to a few folks over on the UO.COM Discussion Boards, the strange bola balls being whispered about are starting to make their appearance, specifically on the corpses of Orc Bombers. It is rumored that these items, when altered by a tinker can be used to dismount a rider from his/her mount.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:02 AM

    June 19, 2001

    More Information on 4 Year Rewards

    Melantus posted the following on the Discussion Boards at the official UO site:

    Ok, I messed up a bit so let me clarify:

    Let's say you have used up your veteran reward points already. When the fourth year time rolls around, you will get another point. If we put in a fourth year reward, you can spend that new point on that fourth year reward.

    This is part of what messed me up: If you already spent your points, then those are spent. You wont be able to get back those points to spend them on fourth year rewards. But as I said above, you will be able to spend this new point as you wish.

    Sorry for getting some of that mixed up in my head. Yes, trading rewards back in to get the points back, or having us collect them and credit you somehow would be very hard to do.

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    Melantus@uo.com

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:48 PM

    Four Year Vet Rewards in Design

    The following was posted to UO Stratics this morning:

    Calandryll gave us some nice information about the 4 year vet rewards:
    Remember, we added about 2 months to everyone's account age. Technically, nobody could possibly actually have a four year old account until the end of September, since that is when UO shipped (Sept. '97) :)

    The team is working on designs for the fourth year rewards though.

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content.

    Posted by Thellaren at 10:55 AM

    Player Adjusted Spawn / Title System

    Here is another interesting tidbit posted to Markeedragon.com by Lady Malynn:

    FierY iCe gave a bit of information on player adjusted Spawn:
    The new title system is currently only available in Ilshenar. The spawner changes that allow us to make spawns dynamic can be used anywhere. It's basically a new API that we can use so we can adjust spawns on the fly. The title system is just one of the first things that use it. The roving gypsy camps in Ilshenar use it as well. And the content team has some uses for it I believe. :)

    -FierY iCe
    Programmer: Ultima Online
    and more :)
    The rest of the system will be published with the next major server publish. Expect some cool surprises. And with these cool surprise I highly recommend going to the spawn areas in groups. :)

    -FierY iCe

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:36 AM

    CBS Marketwatch

    Posted to Markeedragon.com:

    Interested in the Business Side of UO?

    If you interested in EA as a business and what is financially happening with UO, you might enjoy this article titled "Electronic Arts hopes for triple play" By Tim Haran, CBS MarketWatch.com

    The full article appears here:

    Here is a piece of the article:
    The demand is such that consumers are paying to play. Post estimates EA.com will have 600,000 subscribers by early-2002. Ultima, EA's four-year-old online fantasy game, already has about 210,000 subscribers paying $10 per month. EA is also testing the subscription-model waters with a sports package that charges a monthly fee for "sports club" access.
    EA is counting on revenues from subscriptions and advertising to make the online business profitable by fiscal 2003. Gilbert said one million subscribers paying $10 per month would make that happen.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:30 AM

    June 16, 2001

    Melantus Leaves UO

    Melantus, Online Community Coordinator for Ultima Online, posted the following announcement about his leaving OSI/Electronic Arts on UO's official forums, here:

    I Have An Announcement To Make

    I wanted to talk with the players for a bit, to let you know some information about a change here. I will be leaving my position as Community Coordinator here at Origin/EA to pursue opportunities elsewhere. I have enjoyed my time with Origin/EA, and the UO team has been like a family to me. A lot of really talented people work here, with the full intent of working hard to make UO even better for you the player.

    Before the rumors start spreading about why I am leaving, let me just clear up a few things. I like working with this UO Live team, and I like my job. I have another opportunity, and thats it. In no way should this be taken as a sign of impending doom, or anything else of the sort. Stellerexs comments about the UO team being larger than ever before are definitely true, and theres more momentum here now than there has been since I can remember. UO will continue to grow and improve, and there are some really good ideas being considered here. Calandrylls Event Design team is moving in full force and has only just begun to really shine. More great things are coming from them in the future. Evocare is heading up the Design group, and is a very capable Lead Designer. Prophet is showing his talent and abilities in his Lead Programming position. Cynthe has been working to see that communication with the players remains a vital part of the service, and is stepping up as Community Manager.

    This is a good time for UO, because the future is bright. In this industry, people change jobs a lot. You have seen it this past year quite a bit. remember that the online MMORPG business is growing as well, and is bound to have growing pains along the way. The bottom line is: Does the team that supports your game, have a passion for what they do and are they committed to the product? Do they take player feedback, and make changes based on that feedback? I believe the UO team is does just that. TIts a good group, and it wasnt an easy choice to make. Ultima Online and this industry will continue to grow, and the lessons I have learned here will always be with me. I will continue to be here for a couple of weeks to help transition this position.

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    Melantus@uo.com

    Posted by Nobody at 2:11 AM

    June 15, 2001

    OSI: OCR News from Cynthe

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    OCR News from Cynthe
    Most of these Comments from the Team lately have started off with an introduction of sorts. Well, I've introduced myself before, so we'll skip that part. This is an introduction to a new beginning, if you will, of the Ultima Online Community Relations Department.

    As you may have seen on the UO.com Employment Listings, we're looking to bring on a new Ultima Online Community Coordinator and a new UO.com Online Content Editor/Writer. This is pretty big news, so before anyone jumps to any conclusions, I wanted to lay out a few details of what's happening here in OCR, starting with a timeline of the OCR history since I have been here (I'll keep it brief).

    When I came into OCR working on Ultima Ascension in November of 1999, LadyMOI was the OCR manager, Calandryll was the UO Community Coordinator, and Leilo was the UO.com Content Editor/Writer. I learned a lot from LadyMOI about management, and about community. I also shared an office with Calandryll and Leilo, and learned about the value of close communication, and about caring for the needs of the players. Later, when LadyMOI went on to a new role in Ultima Online development, Calandryll stepped up to Community Manager, and Melantus took over his role of Community Coordinator for UO. Leilo continued on in charge of the UO.com website content.

    When Calandryll was presented with the opportunity to dip his hand into development and begin creating new global events in UO, he jumped at the chance, and Leilo ascended from her position into the role of Community Manager. I was brought into the UO OCR Department at that time, filling her role as Website Content Editor/Writer, and working closely with Melantus. But as Melantus mentioned in a recent post on our boards, this industry is growing rapidly, and people tend to move quickly when new opportunties arise. So as Leilo and Melantus move on to pursue those other opportunities, I've been given the opportunity to lead the department as Community Manager.

    Losing friends is always difficult, and Leilo and Melantus are both extremely close friends of mine. Being talented people, they will no doubt be an asset wherever they go. But looking forward is important, and there is a LOT to look forward to! Stellerex's last Comments from the Team talked a lot about UO's future, and the exciting things planned... so I won't go into that again. But let's look at the OCR department. I've learned from the best, and I have a lot of my own ideas for things I would like to see happen. I want the discussion boards to become a more useful place. I want the players to feel we're listening on the edge of our seats. I want the community to have a voice in the game's design, and make sure the players' desires are heard and considered. I want the UO.com Update Center to show a steady stream of development and progress. I want a lot of things.

    And what do I have? What I have now is a new position from which to work, and a completely open department. I have the opportunity to choose the people that will make this happen, and the people who will bring the most excitement and the most passion into the Origin Community Services department. And I'm going to do it soon... time is of the essence with a game as rapidly evolving as Ultima Online. It's not often that someone hands you the power and says, "Here - build the team that can do this."

    It's a fresh start, and we're going to make the most of it. :)

    Posted by Nobody at 6:24 PM

    June 14, 2001

    OSI: New BNN Orc Scenario Tale: Takeout

    There's a new BNN article on OSI's ongoing multi-shard Orc scenario on the Ultima Online Web site, here. It's called "Takeout," and we've reproduced it for you below:

    Takeout

    Grula scratched her butt. It was hot, she thought sullenly. Too hot. And she was starving. She had asked another scout to steal some food and cider hours ago from a nearby humie camp, and the stupid orc hadn't returned. It was a dangerous time for an orc to be out hunting and they were only doing it whenever they absolutely had to eat.

    Turning to glance back down the path for what seemed to be the hundredth time, she heard a rustling. Finally! The orc scout she'd been waiting for burst through the bushes, panting frantically.

    "Where my food? Where my drink?" she demanded gruffly, her throat parched from the dry heat.

    The other orc looked momentarily confused. "No food! Humies chase then bonk then humies dead!" He pointed back the way he came. "Dere ledder agh rock tingy flyin agh bonk agh bonk, agh--" he gestured wildly and lurched to the side, throwing himself unceremoniously to the ground. "Humies get bonked, fall off four-legs!"

    Grula tried to forget her thirst for a moment. "Ledder? Rocks? Who have ledder agh rocks?"

    The scout stood clumsily, not bothering to wipe off the dirt that still covered him. "Nub know. Grendul thought it long way killers, but long way killers nub have rock. This different. Not kill, just bonk humie off four-legs. Kill come after but no see what kill." He suddenly stopped and looked around. "Tired. Need drink." He ducked as Grula threw her empty cup at him and growled.

    Female orcs rarely fought, but Grula was an exception. Her cooking had been so bad as to have her forbidden from even touching the cookpots, and her smell was, to put it delicately, too much like flowers and spice to have a chance at finding a mate within the orc fort. Scouting worked fine for her... she had few friends, and spent most of her time alone, hidden. Watching. Although there hadn't been much to watch until recently, when every orc scout had been ordered to keep their eyes open for something. What that something was, they didn't know. They just knew that there was something out there, and that it wasn't friendly.

    In the distance she heard the shouting of more humies in battle and coming her way on horseback quickly. Picking up the cup she had thrown at the other scout, she turned around and whacked him on the back of the head with it. Hide! Humies come! They dove into the bushes and waited for the battle to drift into view.

    As they listened to the sounds of the fighting humies it was obvious that they were losing against whatever was in combat with them. Screams ripped through the air and fewer humies could be heard even though the battle was moving closer and closer.

    From the bushes across the clearing a male on a four-legs burst through the foliage, panic twisting his face. Grula considered jumping out to meet him but a slight humming sound caught her attention and she hesitated. From behind the humie a blur shot out of the trees and slammed around his neck, knocking him to the ground. His horse, already galloping at full speed, continued running into the distance.

    She sat in silence, waiting as the humie slowly got up, obviously dazed from his fall. Whatever did that to the humie, she didnt want to meet. Thankfully, the other orcs hidden in the bushes had the same idea. Moments went by and nothing came from the bushes to finish off the male. Whatever had attacked was gone now. He stood and, thinking himself to be alone, pulled a jug from his pack and took a long draw of cider.

    Him have drink! the orc beside Grula breathed as he stared at the jug as if hypnotized. No see food.

    Finally Grula leaned over to her companion in the bushes. He fit in pot? she whispered.

    Chopper make him fit! he whispered back excitedly.

    And that night, the orcs feasted.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:12 PM

    OSI: Publish Update

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish Update

    We have published an update to all shards to be active following their next scheduled maintenance period. This publish contains the following changes:
    • Addressed a lag issue related to faction lists
    • House deed prices when reselling to real estate agents raised to the correct level on Siege Perilous
    • Orc bombers will now deal damage to players wearing armor
    These changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:26 AM

    OSI: Client Patch Update

    The following was recently posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Client Patch Update

    We will be releasing a client patch on Wednesday, June 13th at approximately 10:30 am CDT. This patch will contain new and updated scenario-related files.

    The current versions should now be 3.0.2d (2D client) and 3.0.2e Build 65 (3D client).

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:25 AM

    June 13, 2001

    Final Barkeep Titles

    The following was recently posted to the UO.COM Discussion Board by Gromm:

    Here it is, the final list of titles! Big big thanks to all of you who made suggestions, some of you will see yours in the list. We actually never planned on the list getting so big, but what the heck. Unfortunately I had to take "Coach" and "Norm" out to make room.

    Now remember, if the title you were really hoping for isn't on the list you can always use the "No title" option!

    And now the list...

    1. alchemist
    2. animal tamer
    3. apothecary
    4. artist
    5. baker
    6. bard
    7. barkeep
    8. beggar
    9. blacksmith
    10. bounty hunter
    11. brigand
    12. butler
    13. carpenter
    14. chef
    15. commander
    16. curator
    17. drunkard
    18. farmer
    19. fisherman
    20. gambler
    21. gypsy
    22. herald
    23. herbalist
    24. hermit
    25. innkeeper
    26. jailor
    27. jester
    28. librarian
    29. mage
    30. mercenary
    31. merchant
    32. messenger
    33. miner
    34. monk
    35. noble
    36. paladin
    37. peasant
    38. pirate
    39. prisoner
    40. prophet
    41. ranger
    42. sage
    43. sailor
    44. scholar
    45. scribe
    46. sentry
    47. servant
    48. shepherd
    49. soothsayer
    50. stoic
    51. storyteller
    52. tailor
    53. thief
    54. tinker
    55. town crier
    56. treasure hunter
    57. waiter
    58. warrior
    59. watchman
    60. No Title

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:09 PM

    OSI: Publish Update

    The following was recently posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish Update

    We have published an update to all shards to be active following their next scheduled maintenance period. This publish addresses NPC shopkeeper inventory pricing issues and the way house deeds will be bought from and sold to vendors.
    These changes include:
    • NPC real estate brokers will now buy house deeds back at 20% below the base price of the deed, or the original price paid when the deed was purchased from a vendor (whichever is lower).
    • NPC shopkeepers will no longer inflate the prices of their inventory when their stock begins to run low, and prices of items will be consistent on all shopkeepers.
    These changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 9:35 AM

    June 12, 2001

    Meredith Hosts Story Night

    Meredith will be having story night at the Golden Globe Theater (located behind the Golden Brew). we figured since the orcs were so busy at the fairgrounds, would be a good idea. So this Wedneday June 13th at 6:30pm PST bring your tales and meet us at the Golden Globe!
    A Map can be found here.

    [Note: The Golden Globe is located on the Trammel facet, northish of the Shrine of Justice. -Ed.]

    Posted by Nobody at 8:35 PM

    OSI: Stellerex on Spring

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Stellerex on Spring

    They tell me that Spring is often the season for change. Maybe this was just wishful thinking on my part, but Id always assumed this was more of a poetic metaphor than a part of everyday life. Change means we sometimes have to say goodbye to things that we've grown accustomed to.

    A few weeks ago, I got a dose of Spring. Two of our friends and colleagues here at OSI stopped into my office with those little envelopes in their hands and a look that told me even before they spoke that spring was not yet over. Yes, it's true: Runesabre and Sage have moved on from our development team.

    Over the past two years, both of these very talented individuals have become more to me than just co-workers and fellow comrades in the foxhole of game development. They've become friends. We've worked together through the long Autumn of Renaissance, and the demanding Winter that was Third Dawn. And while Spring heralded the fledgling birth of a new 3D era for UO, Kirk and Paul have made a tough decision to follow some other friends into a new venture and new challenges. Those of us who remain here to carry the banner of UO into the future salute their enormous effort and dedication. We will truly miss them.

    But Spring also symbolizes new life, and this is certainly true of UO. Spring has brought us Third Dawn, distributed backups, and the new global events program. It's brought us new optimizations, better stability, new hardware, more headway against exploits, and much more is just over the horizon. The current Dev team has incredible talent and resources, and contrary to what some people might assume, is larger than ever. For the first time since Ultima Onlines creation, we have a dedicated art staff creating new art for the game, and thanks to the enhancements to the client that Third Dawn brought about, we can add this new art without having to ship a new CD! Along with the artists, we have more than 20 people in product development, a proportionate amount of QA testers, many with extensive programming knowledge and experience, and our community and studio management folks - all dedicated to Ultima Online. And that doesnt even include the customer support and network operations groups here! So, while Spring had its bumps in the road, Summer is here, and its time to look ahead. Publish 12 will be released by the end of June, and anyone whos read our posts on the boards knows that that includes the long-awaited release of veteran rewards!

    So what else do we have planned? Well, the global events are being extremely well received by the players, so we're going to proceed ahead with making this a perpetual effort. Thanks to our artists and our new event designers, youll see continuing global events, new and fresh magical and non-magical items, and bizarre and exciting monsters added to the world of Sosaria on a much more frequent and systematic basis. Were also focusing closely on the Third Dawn client, which has improved by leaps and bounds since its release - and were certainly not stopping yet.

    Additionally, we're doing some behind-the-scenes prototype work for an even more revolutionary enhancement for Ultima Online. These are the very early stages, but expect to see details revealed in the coming months as we get further along. We're still discussing a few different concepts, but our underlying goal is to make the game more exciting and engaging, with more possibilities than ever - and without halting the momentum were creating with our systematic bug fixes and our popular new content.

    As I mentioned in a previous letter, we're also handling a number of infrastructure and service-related issues as well. It may not sound as exciting as adding new monsters or magic items, but these changes will help the servers with performance and latency as we continue to grow our subscriber base.

    So for now, Spring is over. We've planted some new seeds, and it's going to be an energetic and vibrant summer as we help them grow into an exciting Fall harvest.

    Stellerex
    Senior Producer
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Ursula at 10:53 AM

    June 11, 2001

    Showdown at Justice

    Late last night it was discovered that the Nelic Grimoire, the item of power taken from the witch Aria, had been stolen from the magic school of Fairhaven Village where it was hidden. The village was quickly roused, and a thorough examination of the scene indicated that the thief had gone east through the deep forest. I quickly formed a patrol, which included myself and most of the village's most able warriors and mages, and we set out along the trail to recover the tome. Luckily, such a powerful magic item proved rather easy to track. The trail led all the way to the Shrine of Justice, where we confronted our old enemy: the Lich Commander. The pentagram of blood and the bizarre magical reagents present made it obvious he was performing some sort of pagan ceremony. We quickly entered the shrine, and I confronted him. He did not seem surprised or worried at our presence, and he assured us that his work there had just been completed. He would not tell us where the Grimoire was, only that it was hidden away in a place only he knew of. Although his speech was often punctuated by maniacal laughter, the kind one would expect only from a man who is truly mad, he did reveal that he was in league with the evil Minax, and that her grip of terror would soon extend to our peaceful facet once he broke the seal. Unable to bear any more of his insane ramblings, we struck him down, but before he died, he assured us that we could not destroy him merely by destroying his body. He died with a crazed look of satisfaction on his face.
    What we found on his corpse was most disturbing, and we immediately convened a village council to discuss the night's events. There we showed our mayor Silkon a letter, seemingly from the lady Minax, affirming an alliance between herself and the Lich. We also found 8 maps, each of the area surrounding a shrine of virtue, with the shrine itself circled in blood. We found no trace of the Nelic Grimoire. After long discussion, it was decided that with the Grimoire in his hands, Lich was nearly immortal. He would be back, we were certain, and would come after the shrines again. We concluded that the only reason he would do such a thing, was if he wanted to break the Great Seal. When our people fled Felucca, Lord British used his magic to split the world in two, much like a mirror. The Great Seal was the barrier, the force that was set in place to keep the two worlds separate. If that seal were to be broken, it would be as if the mirror were shattered, and the two worlds would be one again. The shrines function as symbols of Lord British's power, and if those shrines were corrupted or destroyed, then Lord British's sealing would be dissolved.
    We don't know when the Lich will be back, nor what shrine he will strike next. The village of Fairhaven will do its part to try to protect the shrines that are left, but it may not be enough.

    Lord Fizban

    Posted by Ursula at 7:03 PM

    June 10, 2001

    UTB Mall Grand Opening Party

    From the Ultima Online Events Calendar for Baja:

    UTB Mall Grand Opening Party

    Sponsor: Sir D and Mithlandir
    Facet: Trammel
    Location: At The new Tower mall (Long/LAt: 53 26N 41 7 E)
    Start Date: Jun 16 2001 7:00PM CST
    End Date: Jun 16 2001 9:00PM CST
    Recurrance: 1 Time Only

    Large event to show off and introduce all players on baja to our new vendor mall. There will be free food,drinks and whatnot availible to all who choose to come.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:09 PM

    Porch Party Near Vesper Bank in Trammel

    From the Ultima Online Events Calendar for Baja:

    Porch Party

    Sponsor: HollowsEve and Zorthonx
    Facet: Felucca
    Location: Porch Party in front of small plaster east of Vesper bank
    Start Date: Jun 11 2001 10:00PM EST
    End Date: Jun 12 2001 12:00AM EST
    Recurrance: 1 Time Only

    This Porch Party will be just east of Vesper bank across bridge and just as u start to go up to Minoc. There should be many people, chairs and drinks around. Please at least stop in and have some fun.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:04 PM

    Log of the sixty-sixth UO Open House posted

    The Ultima Online House of Commons (UOHoC) IRC chat log of the sixty-sixth UO Open House was recently posted. The full chat log is here.

    The topic of the chat was "General Discussion," and a smorgasbord of Ultima Online's designers, programmers and community staff were present to answer questions. OSI staff present for the chat were, in order of appearance: Evocare, Calandryll, Melantus, Vex, Adrick, Cynthe, Prophet, Hanse.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:55 AM

    June 9, 2001

    Party in Khaldun

    The following announcement from Shadow Dragoon was posted to the UO Stratics Web site:

    Party in Khaldun

    Hail Citizens of Britannia!

    On June 10, (contact Shadow Dragon the day of the event). There is going to be a group going into Khaldun to destroy the evil inside, plus doing the puzzle chests!

    There will be two parties, and they will take opposite paths, as they work they way through, they will kill ANY monsters they see. After the trip to Khaldun, there will be a party, celebrating cleansing a little bit of Khaldun at least! Dragons are allowed, but make sure they stay tame!

    Before going in, to make the parties, there will be a special way to divide them, which will be announced then! I hope to see you there!!!!

    Shadow Dragoon,
    Rare-Jumpit
    ICQ 111376158

    Posted by Nobody at 5:10 PM

    OSI: Real Estate Agents currently disabled

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Real Estate Agents currently disabled

    The Real Estate Agents haven been disabled on all shards to resolve an ongoing issue. We will update you with more information on when they will be reactivated.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:06 PM

    OSI: When Bears Attach

    Have you read the latest UO Spotlight? It's written by Baja's own Randum, The Heroic Stoic. It has probably the funniest ending you'll ever read in a Spotlight. Great job, Randum!

    Randum's tale is posted on the Ultima Online Web site site, here. The start of the story is below.

    When Bears Attach

    They say a picture's worth a thousand words, but often there's a story behind the picture that's just as good as the picture itself. This week's spotlight features one of the most humorous shots we've seen, and the delightfully devilish story of how it came about.

    "I'm tellin' ya, it's a piece of cake! Just pop that head off, skin it back, and mount it on the board. Five minutes, tops!" Lord Randum was serving drinks behind the bar as these words erupted from the mouth of Doug Deep, resident taxidermist of the Heroic Stoic. He was well into his second keg and regaling the crowd of adventurers with tales of his prowess.

    "Well, then, Doug. Show us how it's done!" spouted Doom Monsterbane from the corner.

    "All right, but I'm out of taxidermy kits. I'll make a run into town and when I get back, you'll see just how easy it is to pop the heads off those dang bears!" Being too drunk to remember the words of power for the recall spell, Doug set off on foot toward Vesper, weaving through the trees until he was out of sight.

    "That man chaps my hide sometimes," growled Lord Randum, " I kill the bears, and mark runes for him so he can make his trophies AT NO CHARGE, and he takes the credit for the kills. Sheesh! We all know Doug couldn't fight his way out of a paper bag!"

    "Well, I have an idea," said Dragoneer, one of the local tamers. "Why don't we play a bit of a joke on ole Doug? I'll go tame a couple of bears and Chyna here is a craftswoman. She can make a hole or two in the wall back there where Doug keeps his display trophies, and maybe make up some trick plaques to put around the bears necks. I'll get the bears lined up with the holes and keep them calm. When Doug gets back, Randum can ask him to take a look at the books or something to get him into the back room. When he sits at the desk, I'll poke the bears and make them growl. We'll see how brave Doug is then!"
    This humorous tale continues at here, including a funny screenshot which I won't spoil for you!

    Posted by Nobody at 2:34 AM

    No More Crossroads Gaming Network?

    Lietgardis posted the following on the Lum the Mad site:

    XRG Dies

    The Crossroads Gaming Network, down since sometime yesterday, apparently isn't getting back up any time soon. Former Crossroads of Dereth site manager Allen Grey posted the following on an ad hoc board run by veterans of CoD Discussions:

    From: Brent
    Date: June 08, 2001 at 2:08 pm
    Subject: looks like crossroads is dead folks

    word is the colocation service provider has terminated service for lack of payment.


    I'm waiting for CoD, the only site in the network to enjoy any popularity since the murder of CoB by boards.uo.com, to follow Crossroads of Shadowbane's lead. Otherwise the entire AC community will end up at AC Vault, and I don't want to see the good CoD posters corrupted into using alternating caps in their text sigs.

    (The board link to Allen's announcement was removed by request as the owners are already perilously close to maxing out this month's allotment of bandwidth. Welcome to The New Era.)

    Posted by Nobody at 2:22 AM

    June 7, 2001

    OSI: Unrelenting Tide

    A new chapter to OSI's ongoing Orc Invasion scenario's been posted on the Ultima Online Web site, here. The latest tale is reproduced in its entirety, below:

    Unrelenting Tide

    Duncan winced as the local healer pulled the bandage tighter around his wounded arm. As he glanced down at the bloody arrow lying on the ground next to him, Duncan was reminded of his own mortality. The wound would heal in time, but he would have to fight without his shield for a while. As he listened to the healer's idle conversation and looked around the dimly lit room, he reminded himself he was lucky to even be alive after the last orc raid. Many of his fellow townspeople had perished trying to stem the never-ending tide of orcs.

    "They can't keep coming like this! How many orcs can there possibly be in the world!?" the young healer suddenly asked, changing the subject.

    A warrior laying next to Duncan, her head wrapped in a bandage, propped herself up painfully from her cot. "Seems there's no stopping them. There has to be a way to keep them from taking the town!" The warrior pounded her fist into her open palm as if to accentuate her point.

    "They don't seem interested in controlling the city, though," Duncan said, more to himself than to the others. "Can't stop a siege if the invaders don't actually try to take anything over. It's almost as if each wave is a separate group of orcs, running from something and just smashing whatever gets in their way, rather than some organized invasion with a purpose. I've heard reports from other towns that the orcs attacking them aren't actually making moves to take control either. Something's got 'em spooked, that's for sure."

    Another warrior joined the group, this one having just recently arrived from Britain. "I've heard that too. You know what I think? The orcs aren't the real problem... more like a symptom of something bigger."

    "Aye," Duncan nodded. "And whatever it is that's doing this hasn't shown itself yet. So for now, the best we can do is protect our homes and hope for the best."

    "That's hardly encouraging," the healer said, giving the Paladin a wink to let him know she wasn't expecting him to have all of the answers.

    Duncan smiled slightly for the first time in days. He knew the people of Cove needed him to stay strong and optimistic, but every band of orcs that attacked made it harder to keep his spirits high and his determination strong. He remained proud of his people, though, knowing that lesser men and women would have long ago fled along with the royal guards to the safety of Britain or Trinsic. As he looked around at the despair and carnage in the room, he silently vowed to himself that when he did find this unseen enemy, they would pay for the destruction their actions had wrought.

    As the group continued to talk, a series of explosions from outside rocked the building, knocking the injured warrior from her cot and hurling glasses and healing bottles from their shelves. Duncan immediately rose, much as it pained him to do so, and gripped his sword tightly.

    "Cannons!?" the young healer asked shakily, as she helped the injured warrior back to her cot, the fear evident in her eyes.

    Duncan waved his hand dismissively, trying to calm those inside. "Orcs don't use cannons, never have. They must have found some new toys." He pointed at the warrior from Britain. "Come with me."

    Both warriors carefully left the safety of their hiding place, warily looking for the new orc threat.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:52 PM

    Avalon Message Board and Web Site

    SitePowerUp was where Avalon had its message forums, but SPU announced last week that it was closing. The day after SPU was supposed to close up shop, the Avalon Web site and it's emergency forums went down, and although the site is partly returned, unfortunately the site and forums have not yet been fully repaired.

    However, Claude and the websmiths of Avalon have created a new message board for the City of Destiny, located within the new UO Stratics guild forums. The address for the new Avalon board is http://boards.stratics.com/php-bin/guilds/uo/baja/wwwthreads.php?Cat=7&C=7. Feel free to stop by and join in with the oldest existing player city on the Baja Shard.

    We'll be posting more information on the Avalon Web updates within the next few days.

    Posted by Ursula at 4:47 PM

    Barkeep 2.0

    Gromm posted the following 'Bartender Design' on the official UO.com Boards:

    Ladies and germs, we have an update for you on the Barkeep. I give you...

    Barkeep 2.0!

    First off let me get this out of the way - NO MORE HOUSE LIMITATIONS!! That's right, friends and neighbors, anyone who has a public house can have a barkeep. As a matter of fact they can have two.

    Also we've changed the message system on the barkeep as well. Before the barkeep would say a pre-scripted message when "tipped" with gold. There will still be a tip message. However the tip message will be completely customizable by the owner. If you don't give him a tip message, he won't take tips.

    In addition to the tip rumor you can now add three, count them, three oracle style messages to your barkeep. That's three phrases that the barkeep can say when the keyword you choose is spoken. You say "jump", he'll say "How high?" Well, if you want.

    Many of you wanted personal town criers. Now you'll have them. Say "news" to a barkeep and he'll give you the current scenario rumor.

    Now for the big changes...

    Barkeeps are going to be fully customizable just like a player owned vendor. Actually, even more so because he'll have an option to change his title as well. We're planning on putting a list of "job" titles that you can choose from so if you'd rather have a butler, pirate, paladin, mage, etc... do it. Note that if you change him from a barkeep to (for example) a paladin he's not going to sell you drinks.

    Now let's say you want an elderly grandmother in your house to give people a clue for a quest you're running. You go out, you buy your barkeep deed with your hard earned gold, bring it home and WHAM-O! You've just dropped a strapping male barkeep! OH NO! What is a RP'er to do?? Change it's sex of course with the handy dandy "Male / Female" option! You want a male, make it male. You want a female, make it female. You want to confuse your pet, switch it back and forth really fast.

    Many of you wanted a greeting attached to the barkeep. We didn't quite get that in, however, add a greeting and make the keyword "vendor buy" and anytime people buy drinks the barkeep will say your greeting.

    Have a phrase too big for the barkeep to say? Divide it into two phrases and give them both the same keyword. The barkeep will say both phrases in order when he hears the one keyword. If you want you can use all three custom messages with just the one keyword.

    Want people to know about your involvement in the event scenarios? (Of course you do!) Let's say I had a barkeep right now. I could set a message "Lord Gromm is leading a hunt tonight for the beasts!" and set the keyword as "news". If someone were to say "news" to my barkeep he would respond with "Orcs are attacking various cities throughout the realm! Lord Gromm is leading a hunt tonight for the beasts!" because "news" is the keyword for the scenario rumor and the message I entered.

    Setting up your own quest? That's where the tip rumor comes into play. Anyone can get the tip rumor with gold, so that's your gateway. You can now make additional phrases with the three oracle style messages that relate to the tip message. For example, you could set up a barkeep with the tip message "There is a hunt on for Gromm." Now you set one of your 3 other messages with the keyword "Gromm" and the next clue you want to give visitors.

    We want you to get creative with this sucker and we feel now we've given you the tools to do it. A HUGE thanks to all of you that gave us feedback when we first announced the barkeep, your ideas and concerns have had a massive impact on the design. Want to have some more impact? Here's a tentative list of the job titles we're going to put on the barkeep. Let us know what you feel needs to be added or taken away.

    barkeep
    butler
    cook
    servant
    hermit
    paladin
    artist
    bard
    beggar
    blacksmith
    brigand
    carpenter
    farmer
    fisherman
    gambler
    innkeeper
    mage
    mercenary
    miner
    monk
    noble
    peasant
    pirate
    ranger
    sailor
    scribe
    tailor
    thief
    tinker
    waiter
    warrior
    merchant
    scholar
    sage
    librarian
    curator
    alchemist

    Enjoy!

    Gromm
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:28 AM

    June 6, 2001

    A Tale or Two Role Playing Board

    The Ultima Online House of Commons (UOHoC) has posted its 26th Ultima Online Celebrity Chat. The night's guests were Nikademus, Curunir and Riptide, the Ex Intrest Volunteer Leads. Dariuas, in charge of the chat for the evening, noted that the "guests are no longer with OSI, so they do not represent their views or opinions."

    Nikademus was the Interest Coordinator for Events Programming, Curunir was the training coordinator for the Seer program, and Riptide was "the Plot Role Coordinator for that past year or so, right after the UO:R fiction ended."

    During the conversation, Nikademus shared the following amusing anecdote, from his time as an Interest Volunteer:

    Nikademus - Well, one night I get all sorts of PMs in IRC from the vols on Atlantic, saying some demon was in front of Trinsic spawning monsters and attacking players
    Nikademus - and apparently none of the Seer were doing it
    Nikademus - So I logged in and tried to contact the demon
    Nikademus - They weren't responding, so I jailed him
    Nikademus - Called in the GMs and IGMs, to see what was going on
    Nikademus - Turns out it was the head of the department, starting the next phase of the plot. He was playing one of the demon generals, Anmac. :(
    Nikademus - er, :)
    Nikademus - So my first jailing of a person turned out to be my boss. :)
    The entire 26th Ultima Online Celebrity Chat log can be found here.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:22 PM

    A Tale or Two Role Playing Board

    I read the following announcement from Rimlock Valcite was posted to UO Stratics:

    A Tale or Two Role Playing Board

    Greetings to ye all! I be Rimlock Valcite, informing ye of a new Message Board available to the public; A Tale or Two (roleplaying encouraged). I welcome ye to a place o' yer choice to do whatever it may be with plenty o' options.

    So come right on in to the setting o' yer choice and grab yerself a beverage ye so desire. Sit yer fanny down if ye will, and talk to the people surrounding ye. Listen to a tale from another folk, or weave a tale o' yer own.

    Perhaps ye could participate in adventures whenever they are available, or gather some friends and perform active quests. They list may be endless, as long as it's appropriate. So come, ye all, to the setting o' yer choice, to share a tale or two, or whatever it may be.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:06 PM

    June 5, 2001

    UODisney Sign Up Extension

    AngelStorm over at UOC Chesapeake posted the following note:

    UODisney Sign Up Extension

    I am pleased to announce that Walt Disney World has given us an extension for signing up more attendees for our event! Anyone who is interested in attending and missed the original deadline can still register and attend as long as payment is received by June 15th. Please visit our site to join us!

    As many of you know, we had initially announced that Runesabre would be attending as the OSI representative. However, with his recent departure from OSI we have had a change and are pleased to announce that UO's new lead designer, Evocare, will be filling that vacancy.

    To those of you already attending, please don't forget to order your shirts soon, as it has been my experience that it takes 10-14 days for delivery.

    We can't wait to meet everyone!

    Posted by Nobody at 4:44 PM

    OSI: Jalek Speaks

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Jalek Speaks<

    Hail and well met,

    Since this is my first Comments from the Team, I would like to introduce myself for those of you who do not know me. My name is Kevin Saffel, a.k.a. Jalek, and my title is Client Programmer on UO Live. I would just like to take a moment and tell you how I got to Origin and then let you know what I am working on.

    As I graduated high school, I realized that I didnt have the money to go to college. I joined the Air Force and became a Nuclear Weapons Technician, believe it or not. :) While serving my country, I was introduced to the Ultima series of games by a friend of mine. I could not get enough. I played every one of them that I could, night and day, and eventually realized that I wanted to get a degree in programming and try to get a job with this company I admired so much. A couple of years out of college, I found a game called Ultima Online, and it was even more addicting than the other Ultimas. I then applied even more to get a job at Origin, and finally in November of 1999 my dream came true.

    I have worked on client bugs, helped out with the party system, done some server work and I was one of the client programmers on UO: Third Dawn. Now, I am working on cleaning up some of the client code, fixing bugs, and supporting the events team to some degree.

    Bug fixing is very important to the UO Live team, and we put a lot of work into seeing that all our systems are at the level that we designed them to be. UO is a huge game, with many systems interwoven and dependent on each other. It is also a code base that has been worked on by MANY different people. The changing of any minute part of a system - yes, even in the client -- can result in one or many other areas being broken. So, we have to be careful when we change anything, because each change requires multiple systems to be completely retested every time we go to patch (and I know you want updates more often than every 7 to 8 months!). We start off by investigating the bugs, then finding a solution, implementing the solution, and giving QA time to test the bug. If problems are found, we have to start all over. Even so, things get missed from time to time. This is why we will sometimes just rewrite systems when time permits, to decouple the strict dependencies that some of these systems have on each other.

    The UO team loves UO and wants our players to have the best time possible while playing the game. That is why we will never stop fixing bugs, rewriting systems to make them better, and adding new content to the game. Yes we do and will continue to make mistakes, I can guarantee you that, but we will do our best to correct them.

    So, if you have a bug, a question, an idea or just want to shout and say hi, give me a holler at jalek@uo.com.

    Kevin "Jalek" Saffel
    Client Programmer
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 4:38 PM

    June 4, 2001

    UOHoC Update - Planned for Thursday

    The following was posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    UOHoC Update - Planned for Thursday

    Just a quick heads up about the UOHoC for this week. There were several rumors that it would be on Tuesday, but as usual it is still being planned for this coming Thursday, June 7th. We'll have an official post up soon with details about it. In the meantime, if you would like to check out previous UOHoC's, make sure to check out our UOHoC Website.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:52 PM

    #Ultima-Online Celebrity Chat!

    The following was posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    #Ultima-Online Celebrity Chat!

    Join us in #Ultima-Online this Monday, June 4th, 7:00 PM Central Time, for another Ultima Online Celebrity Chat. Our guests will be Nikademus, Kieron, Curunir, and Riptide who are all former UO Interest Volunteers. They'll be around to answer your questions and chat.

    Never been on Stratics IRC before? It's easy! Simply download an IRC client such as mIRC and connect to one of the following servers, and type /join #Ultima-Online.
    • dhp.stratics.com
    • compu.stratics.com
    • frws.stratics.com
    • intworks.stratics.com
    • tac.stratics.com
    As an alternative, you can use our Java client via your web browser here.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:51 PM

    TOL and MT's Tournament - This Saturday!

    The following announcement was posted by the Baja Mage Tower:

    TOL and MT's Tournament - This Saturday!

    The Order of Leonine and The Mage Tower will be holding a PvP Tourney on June 9, 2001 from 6:00 PM Pst to 8:00 PM PST.

    The Mage Tower is located in Felucca near Moonglow.

    Here is a map to the Feluccia Mage Tower
    The following rules apply to the tournament


    Sign up is one hour before start time (5pm PST
    No Looting
    No Stealing
    No Area Spells or Explotion Potions
    No one enters the arena if they are not called upon
    No fighting outside the arena
    No pets (exept non-agressive mounts)

    All are welcome to attend! Hope to see you there!

    Nitram - The Order of Leonine

    Nekkar - The Mage Tower

    Posted by Nobody at 6:46 PM

    Leilo Leaving OSI, Moving to Destination

    The following was recently posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    Leilo Leaving OSI, Moving to Destination

    We received a letter from Susan "Leilo" Kath this morning that she will be leaving her position as Manager of Community Relations for UO later this week. A replacement should be announced soon, but she made sure to emphasize that the Community Relations department is still in excellent hands with Cynthe and Melantus.

    The silver lining in this story is that we have also confirmed with her that she will be moving to Destination Games, the company that was recently founded by Richard "Lord British" Garriott and the same company that several other former OSI employees have moved to in the last couple of months (especially the UO2 Dev Team).

    Posted by Nobody at 6:31 PM

    OSI: Cities under attack?

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Cities under attack?

    Reports are pouring in that the orcs have been spotted closer to the cities than ever before. Residents on the outskirts of the cities have said that it appears we're in for an attack within the next couple days.

    Guards have been called from all over Britannia to protect the larger cities, which we hope will prevent the orcs from attempting to attack these areas.

    This will be a dark time for citizens of the smaller towns, and we can only hope that by banding together, these attacks can be weathered until the true source of this uprising can be found.

    Some guards will remain in the smaller towns to see that anarchy does not erupt, and that citizens will be protected from other citizens. Stealing and attacking other players in town unlawfully will still bring the ire of the town guards. However, these remaining guards will be too sparse to defend the town against orc attacks.

    NOTE: These updates are related to the continuing scenario occuring in Ultima Online. For more information, read the associated fiction located at http://town.uo.com/bnn/article_430.html . The items associated with the scenario will continue to be available in game after the scenario is complete.

    To discuss these scenarios and happening around Britannia, please participate in the Roleplaying, Events, and Scenarios forum at the UO Boards, at http://boards.uo.com/cgi-bin/postlist.pl?Cat=&Board=role.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:28 PM

    New Craftables Possibly on Horizon

    Here are a few comments made on the UO Discussion Boards and then relayed to Markee Dragon's Site. They relate to the Orc Scenario developing over the various shards:

    -Jonathan "Calandryll" Hanna
    Designer, Ongoing Content

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:01 AM

    June 2, 2001

    Changes to Ship Looting Coming in Next Publish

    From the Turbulent Waters Page:

    Among a long list of upcoming bug fixes posted by UO developer Krum today and slated for the mysterious "next publish" was this shocking revelation:

    " players can no longer directly take items off of boats that they are not standing on"

    Since the beginning of UO, there has been a method, not commonly known, of being able to grab items off other ships from one's own ship when in close proximity. Virtually any spot on any ship could be reached - the exception being of course the spots behind the mast of the large ships. In the past, both developers and GMs have never taken a firm stance on its use. Their response to it, and almost every other issue involving ship security, has been that ships were never meant to be used as secure storage anyway.

    This change, already in effect on the Test Rewards 1 Shard, does indeed prevent players from simply sailing up and taking visible items off the deck of another ship. Attempting to do so results in the "You can not pick that up." message.

    Note the word "directly" in the statement from Krum, though. There are more indirect methods of obtaining certain items off the deck of another ship, and on the test shard those methods are still functioning. In addition, I was able to loot a corpse of a NPC that I had brought along and killed, so the looting of visible corpses is also still intact. Hopefully this is only the beginning of a series of ship security fixes, and it will be interesting to see where OSI draws the line in dealing with issues involving ship use, and misuse.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 3:15 PM

    UO Stratics Guild Forums

    The following was posted by Ce'Nedra Willow at UO Stratics:

    UO Stratics Guild Forums

    UO Stratics is happy to announce our newest endeavor to provide for the Ultima Online Community. We are now able to offer Guild Forums for players of Ultima Online on our very popular WWW Threads Forums. You will only need to register once to access all the future Guild Forums, no matter what shard they hail from. We are offering each guild/group one public forum and up two private forums. All users will be expected to follow the Stratics Forum Rules of Conduct.

    The Guild Forums are available here, sorted by shard for your convenience. If you wish to sign up for forums for your Guild/Group/Organization you can use this easy form. Please be sure to read and understand all the information on the forms. Once your form is submitted you will receive an email confirmation. Can't wait to see you there!

    Posted by Nobody at 1:44 PM

    June 1, 2001

    June 2001 Indianapolis Player

    Information about the upcoming Indianiapolis player meet can be found at the Kinshipp Web site. The announcement and current list of players attending the meet can be found here.

    June 2001 Indianapolis Player Meet Information

    General Information

    Kinship Village on Catskills, in celebration of our 3 year anniversary
    (March 2001), is sponsoring a player meet in Indianapolis, Indiana on June 23rd, 2001. We welcome not only Catskills and Kinship Village players, but all players from all shards to enjoy this event.

    Our player meet last year was very well attended and a smashing success. We expect this year's event to be even better.

    Date:
    Saturday, June 23, 2001
    Time:
    3pm - 5pm CST (4pm - 6pm EST) - In the private room.
    5pm - ??? CST - Games and socializing in the club.
    Location:
    Jillian's Billiards Room in Indianapolis, Indiana
    Cost:

    $35 per person (What does this cover?)

    This cost may be paid via PayPal to thamilton@ameritech.net or via snail mail to:

    UO Player Meet
    6633 Mill Run Drive Apt. 1823
    Indianapolis, IN 46214
    Make checks payable to Teresa Hamilton and please include your character name(s), real name, email address, guild or organization, shard, and where you are coming from.

    Deadline:
    Your cost and intent to join us must be received by
    June 15, 2001. I have to give the club my final head count at that time.

    *Time Zones: Indiana does not participate in Daylight Savings Time, so we match up with those in the Central time zone this time of year.

    Event Details

    Jillian's is an incredible entertainment and dining concept featuring all kinds of things to do. Jillian's includes 2 great restaurants, over 100 virtual reality style video games, a classic billiards lounge, an over the top bowling experience, the latest electronic simulation attractions, dancing, live music and the best sports and media viewing anywhere.

    Minors (under 21) are welcome at the club until 9pm. The dress is casual, but neat (i.e. no sweats or dirty/worn clothing).

    Jillian's in Indianapolis is located at:

    141 S Meridian St.
    Indianapolis, IN 46225
    Phone: 317.822.9300
    Web
    Map

    The first two hours of our meet will be held in the Billiards room (on the second floor) which includes 2 large pool tables. Snack foods will be served during this time. Both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks are available (cash bar).

    Your cost covers the following food selections (buffet style):
    • Jillian's Signature Tortilla Chips with Secret Salsa
    • Fresh Vegetable Landscape with Dill Dip
    • Chicken Tenders with Sauces
    • Assorted Gourmet Pizza Slices
    Your cost also covers 1 game card per person worth $10 of video games in Jillian's "Amazing Games Room" and our two hour rental of the Billiards Room.

    OSI has informed me that they no longer send representatives to player meets with an attendance of less than 100 people. However, they have promised me some door prizes. I'll give you the details on those as soon as they fill me in on what they'll be sending.

    I also have some things left over from last year and am planning a fun UO trivia event, just to give you all something else to look forward to.

    Travel Information

    I like to use http://www.itn.com to make travel arrangements. You can make all your air, car, and hotel arrangements on this one site. You can also insert Jillian's address in order to choose a hotel close by.

    There are several nice hotels in the downtown area. I advise staying downtown to be within walking distance of restaurants, clubs, entertainment, museums, and just about every other tourist attraction Indy has to offer.

    If you need help getting to and from the Indianapolis airport, or further assistance in your travel arrangements, please contact me and I'll see what I can do. Send email to kinshipv@ameritech.net or ICQ #6557619.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:07 PM

    Last Days to Register for Disney Gathering!

    AngelStorm posted the following to the UO Chesapeake News site:

    Last Days to Register for Disney Gathering!

    Just a quick reminder that there are only 2 days left to register to attend
    the Player Luncheon in Walt Disney World on June 23rd. Please be sure to visit
    the site today and sign up to join over 150 other UO players for a day of fun and fellowship.

    See you all in a few weeks!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:49 PM

    OSI: Comments from Oaks

    The following was posted to the Team Comments on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Oaks

    For exactly one year now, I've been working at Origin Systems as a designer for Ultima Online. As these are my first comments, I believe introductions are in order. My online name is Oaks, and, had I known how many times I'd be called Oats or Oak, there's a good chance I may have picked something else. But I like it, gosh darn it! Anyhow... who's seen the cool magic effects in Third Dawn? I designed almost all of them, as well as worked on the Ilshenar map, dungeon Khaldun, and many bug fixes, including the change to cutting bandages.

    Right now, I'm focused on making the journey to whatever goals you are trying to reach in UO more enjoyable - more fun. In life, finally reaching a goal and reaping the benefits is sometimes the only reward, but there's no reason is has to be like that in our game. Imagine if you had to climb a bleak mountain to find a treasure cache. It's nothing but a long haul up a boring landscape, where you are driven only by your (admittedly greedy) desire for loot. What if, instead, you had to solve stimulating intellectual challenges or trek through a dangerous forest filled with traps and monsters, both with the same end reward? If the difficulty were balanced, very few people would climb the mountain.

    Anyway, I've got my own ideas, but why don't you tell me yours? Pick a skill, quest, or even your own goal that makes you cringe at the thought of achieving it. How can we make it more fun to arrive at that goal? What would make you actually look forward to the journey, rather than just the end reward?

    In the past, I may have been scarce on the boards, as I read much more than I post. This may still be the case to a point, but I do want to become more active in the community - especially the Development Board, since thats where I hope to find the most discussion on what really makes UO tick. So tell me those ideas and thoughts about what you hope to see as the way we build our characters and our world, and not just what we hope to gain at the end. As a team, we bounce ideas and designs off one another constantly, and I feel we can gain even more from you.

    See ya there!

    Jonathan "Oaks" LeCraft
    Designer, Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 5:41 PM

    OSI: Seeking Orc Adventures

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Seeking Orc Adventures

    There's something different in the air... some have attributed it to the tension caused by knowing that there's an enemy close by, but not yet seen. Maybe it's the sobering realization that we haven't actually seen the true evil yet. Or perhaps it's just the smell of the charred bones in the cookpots at the orc encampments, permeating the air around the previously peaceful cities of Britannia.

    Have your adventures taken you into the orc forts, or the orc camps now dotting the countryside? If you and your companions have braved the onslaught of the orcs, we want to hear your tales. Even if you're on the other side, and preparing to defend the orcs against an even more sinister force, tell us your stories!

    Send an e-mail to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, June 8th. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include Orcs in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to uo-profiles become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:40 PM

    OSI: Customer Support Advisors

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Customer Support Advisors

    EA has arranged with a small group of international customer support representatives to aid in handling game-related customer support, as well as other tasks, for EA.com. As of Friday, June 1st, they will be spending some time addressing Ultima Online customer concerns on the Chesapeake and Atlantic shards from 5:00 pm to 1:00 am EDT as advisors, appearing in peach-colored robes. Please keep in mind that Advisors will only address game play issues. This is an experimental program, and we will post updates when and if the program is to be expanded.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:39 PM

    OSI: Ultima Online Support Availability - June 1st

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Ultima Online Support Availability - June 1st

    Due to a company function, Ultima Online Account and Customer Support will be limited from 3:15pm - 4:15pm CDT on Friday, June 1st. International Game Master Support will not be affected. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:38 PM

    OSI: 2D and 3D Client Patch

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    2D and 3D Client Patch

    We will be releasing a client patch on Friday, June 1st at approximately 11:45 am CDT. This patch contains an encryption change and various bug fixes.

    The current versions should now be 3.0.2b (2D client) and 3.0.2a Build 64 (3D client).

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:37 PM

    May 31, 2001

    OSI: Account Access Transfer Program

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Account Access Transfer Program

    In the interest of providing our customers with a safe procedural way in which to transfer UO account access from one individual to another, we would like to remind you of our Origin Account Access Transfer Program. This program allows you to carry out the transfer process officially through the OSI Billing Department, ensuring that in case of any dispute, we can verify the correct owner of a specific UO account. By simply arranging for signatures from both parties involved, completing a confirmation phone call with an OSI representative, and arranging a small transfer fee, your access transfer will be secure and final.

    Additional details on the Account Access Transfer Program, and the appropriate form, can be found here.

    Posted by Nobody at 9:13 PM

    Messageboard Link Gathering

    Due to the recent collapse of Vor's old Messagezone service, many of our messageboard links here at the press will become inoperational. If you would like to help us update any of the links or know of new messagesites for different entities, please feel free to post them to us here, or you can even send an e-mail to the following address.

    Thank you for helping keep Baja linked.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:25 AM

    May 30, 2001

    OSI: BNN Reports on Paladin's "Homecoming"

    The following article was posted at BNN at the Ultima Online Web site. This article, originally found here, is the fourth in the series of articles that relate to the currently ongoing, cross-shard "Orc Quest" being run by OSI.

    Homecoming

    His polished armor shining brightly in the sunlight, the young paladin rode through his beloved city of Cove. Duncan had only returned to his city of birth a few days ago, after many years of questing. He knew it was time for some much-needed rest before once again traveling to the far reaches of Britannia in search of those in need. Duncan was proud of his city - a place of hardworking men and women, most of whom had left the larger cities for the excitement of a �frontier� town and the hope of a new life.

    The paladin�s thoughts turned bleak as he considered that new life. Cove was not what it once had been. Granted, there had always been the threat of the orc fort nearby, making it difficult to maintain a steady sense of peace, but something had changed recently. Scattered reports of movement by the orc tribes continued to come in, yet there seemed to be no sense of purpose behind the orcs� actions. �Twas easy to understand the mind of an orc. Battle, blood, the conquering of all, the taking of land� these were the things that made an orc. These reports, however, did not reflect a steady march of orcs sent to conquer new land. If Duncan did not know better, he would almost say it seemed as if the orcs were being scattered. They were not marching towards a goal, they were running away from some unknown menace - and it was towards Cove that they fled.

    As he turned a corner, Duncan spied a boy, no more than fourteen, running towards him. The boy�s leather armor was in tatters and a long gash could be seen on his right arm. He stumbled a few times as he ran towards the paladin, obviously shaken and in pain. Duncan immediately dismounted as the boy reached him and began applying a bandage to the boy�s arm.

    "M�lord, they�ve broken through the outer wall!" the boy cried, his speech interrupted by weak coughs.

    The paladin�s crimson eyes went wide. "What are you talking about?"

    "Orcs, m�lord! Dozens of them! They�ve already slaughtered most of those at the wall and are making their way into the city."

    "What of the guards? Cove still holds a small regiment of the king's men, does it not?"

    "I don�t know, m�lord. The guards seem pre-occupied with their patrols and regiments. And many have already left to defend Britain and Trinsic against possible attacks." The boy winced as Duncan tightened the bandage. "But the orcs are not attacking either of those cities, nor does it look as if they will."

    "Blast! So it seems we of the smaller towns are left to fend for ourselves, then!" yelled the young paladin, his tired eyes turning cold with rage. "Rally the men and women at the square and see if you can send word to our friends in the larger cities. We�ll deal with the vermin ourselves."

    The boy saluted as Duncan drew his longsword and reared his mount. Galloping directly towards the main gate, it only took him a few moments to reach the battle. Duncan quickly tried to surmise the situation - where the line was weakest, who fought for him and who was nowhere to be seen, and, perhaps worst of all, the visible desperation of the men who stood as the town�s only defense. The defenders were slowly being pushed back. Duncan knew he had to do something, anything, and with a reckless shout, he kicked his horse into a charge.

    The young paladin�s mount crashed into the line, trampling one orc while Duncan slew another with a quick strike to its head. Duncan barked orders to those near him, trying to bring some order to the chaotic fighting. The arrival of the paladin and other veteran warriors gave the defenders hope, and they managed to gain the advantage, slowly pushing the orcs back. Finally, the remaining orcs fled as the townsfolk let out a roaring cheer.

    Their cheer was cut short as a shout rang from the top of the wall.

    "More orcs�hundreds of them!!"

    Duncan readied his sword and tried to calm his nerves. He shouted orders to the men near him, trying to form a battle line. The front gate was still in ruins and the wooden walls would not stop the orcs. The people of Cove were used to dealing with orc raids, but never anything like this. Help had better arrive fast, he thought, or there would soon be two orc forts east of Britain!

    Posted by Nobody at 11:34 PM

    City of Ravenshire Plans Hythloth Adventure

    The following announcement from Cantharis of the City of Ravenshire was posted to UO Stratics:

    City of Ravenshire Plans Hythloth Adventure

    Hail Citizens of Britannia,

    There have been rumors of a greater evil brewing in the dungeon Hythloth. We are assembling a party of 40 brave souls to venture into the depths of that vile hole in the ground. We will be splitting into 5 teams to brave the abyss! Each team will have a team captain, which will be one of the citizens of Ravenshire. It will be your duty to protect your team captain, for if he or she falls, your team must leave the dungeon.

    However..... If any one falls, they will be ressurected long enough for them to retrieve thier corpse and be gated out. Once we have hit the bottom floor, we will challenge that evil and once it is destroyed we shall return to Ravenshires RavensWing Tavern and have a celebration! At this time, Prizes will be given out to the most courages team, the most helpful and the one with the most members!

    Please join us Saturday June 2nd at 9pm PST at Ravenshire Coordinates: 131'6N 131'33E - Trammel

    We will also be providing gates from East and West Britain bank, Vesper Bank, Moonglow Bank, Delucia Bank, And Minoc Bank. Best of Luck to every one who braves the depths!

    Cantharis

    Posted by Nobody at 7:41 PM

    Some Quick Notes & Links on OSIs Orc Quest

    Have you been keeping up on the current, ongoing multi-Shard Quest that OSI has been playing out in Ultima Online? There's three BNN articles so far: Dudagog's Tale (here), Prying Eyes (here), and Fallen Comrades (here). UO Stratics has a very nice compilation of related information in their Quest section, here.

    Fightened orcs and orc scouts seemingly prepare for an impending war. Green-colored masks of orcish kin are found on their corpses, as are dark orcish bows and the new evil orc helms. Be careful when using these new items. They may seem to give you an edge, but they're just as likely to hurt you as help you.

    Screenshot from Kawaja, Miwant, Shedevail, and Ce'Nedra Willow's article at UO Stratics

    Posted by Nobody at 7:34 PM

    OSI: Exploiting in Ultima Online

    The following was postred to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Exploiting in Ultima Online

    Please remember that exploiting bugs or using unapproved third party programs in Ultima Online can result in the permanent suspension of your Ultima Online account. A list of approved third party applications can be found here. Using any exploit or third party application not on this list is a violation of the Rules of Conduct.

    We are committed to removing those players that choose to exploit Ultima Online, and will continue to work towards maintaining an enjoyable and level playing experience for all of our players.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:34 PM

    May 29, 2001

    OSI: Bug fixing, Hanse-style

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Bug fixing, Hanse-style

    Howdy!

    Its been a year since I started with the design team for Ultima Online Live. As I sat pondering whether I should comment on any hot topics debated on our web boards, I realized that I am just one person on a large team and any changes/additions being considered could not really be commented on accurately. Those changes can be altered at any point in the development cycle and be very different at the time of release, thus any specific comment I make on upcoming changes could be misleading. Id like to discuss instead bug fixing by the Ultima Online Live team, rather than new and upcoming changes to the game.

    Over the last year, Ive helped squash many bugs in the game. Most of my development time has been bug fixing. Its not the most glorious of designer tasks, but seeing something fixed, and seeing players enjoying the game more as a result of the fix, is a sweet reward.

    Bug fixing continues as one of our big challenges for this year. In fact, we have more resources to devote to bug fixing now than we did last year. The past approach of find and squash has also been revisited and altered. Along with the previous approach, we will start separating bugs into classifications of bugs and attempting system-wide approaches to the fixes. Time to devote to systematic fixing was not available in the past. You may think that this approach is a no brainer, but last year was a busy one, with development split up between many new systems (after I came on the team, not including UO: Renaissance and before) and one expansion product.

    The developers here devote their time to many different tasks, which are split into different groups. This allows us to work efficiently on the specific areas of the game we are assigned (a few examples are bug fixing for server code, bug fixing for the client that runs on your computer, and new content). The whole team does not stop what it is doing to create an orc mask. One or two developers can make an orc mask. Quality Assurance maintains a database of bugs for us to review and their priorities. Many of the bugs in the database were submitted by players or brought to our attention through posts on the MyUO boards. Usually, there is not a workday that goes by without someone deliberating over some kind of fix for the game.

    Now that we have a larger group of developers working on fixes, the publish process is taking longer to QA. The next two publishes will be large, with some noticeable fixes to standing bugs as well as new content (some items left out of previous publishes for Ilshenar), more localization, some optimization, and various other changes (of course, this list is subject to change as dictated by our Quality Assurance team).

    In closing, were aware of many of the issues in the game and are making good progress on strengthening our foundation. This process continues while many other systems are developed. It is my privilege to get my feet dirty squashing all these bugs. In fact, its one of the most rewarding positions Ive ever held within a company. If you have knowledge of a bug within the game, please feel free to stop by our developer board on MyUO and say hello with a description of the bug. :)

    -Hanse
    UO Live Designer

    Posted by Nobody at 8:36 PM

    OSI: Wanted: Let's See Your Homes!

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Wanted: Let's See Your Homes!

    "All right, put the throne over there. No, over there - under the big fish. Wait... let's dye the rug. How about green? Or maybe fuschia."

    Is your home a place of divine elegance? Or is it a shrine to tackiness? Whether you own a tower or a thatched roof cottage, we want to see and hear what you've done with the place! Owners and friends of the house are welcome to submit screenshots and stories of their homes and the styles they've chosen. The wilder, the better, we say!

    Send your story as an e-mail, with a single screenshot attached, to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, June 1st. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include Home Designs in your subject line. The screenshot should be in bitmap format, and 600x480 resolution. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to uo-profiles become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    NOTE: This is a call to see some of the residences of our citizens. Please do not submit shops or establishments for the spotlight - we are always happy to receive these submissions at http://town.uo.com/establishments.html.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:25 PM

    SitePowerUp Message Service Closing

    Many of us use the SitePowerUp message service system, which has unfortunately been unavailable for the past few days. Sometime after the boards came back up today, the following message appeared (and continues to be seen there, even now) at the top of all SitePowerUp boards:

    I regret to inform you that SitePowerUP.com and its services will be shutting down permanently on June 1, 2001. The only exception to this is email. Users who have @sitepowerup.com accounts are welcome to keep them. Since 1997 we have provided services for over 50,000 web sites and have logged almost a half billion pageviews from our users. Those of you with paid service will be refunded a prorated percentage of your current payment after the first week of June.

    Jim Townsend aka Vor the Admin
    Lum the mad, of his site of the same name, also reporting this story, had the following suggestions for those soon-to-be-ex-SitePowerUp users:
    As a service to those in the MMO community hit by this move, here are some providers of free message board services.If you host your own web server, you can also set up your own message board. This has the advantage of not inflicting annoying pop-up ad banners and such on your users. However they can be a drain on your web server and require some (in some cases quite a bit of) knowledge in setting up web applications. Novices are recommended to start with Ultimate BB as that system has a simple step-by-step tutorial and works with almost every web server. In repeated (*sigh*) testing we've found that WWWThreads holds up the best under high-stress conditions.
    • Ultimate BB ($249, requires Perl on web server)
    • WWWThreads ($100, requires Perl or PHP and MySQL on web server)
    • VBulletin ($85, requires PHP and MySQL on web server)
    • Snitz Forums (free, requires NT web server and Access or MS-SQL)
    Please feel free to use the Freeborn Press message board, here, to coordinate your message forum changes, and don't forget to check in at the news pages of your favorite groups on their own impending changes.

    Posted by Nobody at 2:33 PM

    May 26, 2001

    Player Owned Bartenders

    The following was posted to the IN DEVELOPMENT page at UO.COM:

    Players will now be able to purchase and own a Bartender, that can be placed in the player's house. The bartenders will serve as a method for players to support and announce their own events and quests. The bartenders will have the following properties:
    • The Bartender can be "tipped" with amounts of gold. Depending on the amount of gold, the Bartender's reply will vary to possibly include a "rumor".

    • Rumors on the Bartender can and will (depending on the size of the tip) be about current scenarios currently going on within UO (game-generated scenarios). For example, a rumor might be about the Orc events that have been happening recently. The game-generated rumors will be kept current by the event system automatically, shard-wide.

    • The Bartender's owner/employer will be able to place one rumor on the bartender. This will allow for the bartender to function within player-created scenarios.

    • Players will be able to decide whether to tip the bartender for a scenario rumor or a �local� player generated rumor.

    • The Bartender will also sell drinks.

    • A contract of employment for a bartender can be purchased at an Innkeeper.
    Bartenders will be in the various taverns throughout the cities, to support the scenarios as well, with the scenario rumors. However, players will not be able to add rumors to these bartenders.

    The types of houses a bartender can go in are:
    • Two Story Villa

    • Large Marble Patio

    • Large Brick House

    • Large Patio

    • Two Story Stone and Plaster

    • Two Story Wood and Plaster

    • Tower

    • Stone Keep

    • Castle

    • Sandstone

    • Log cabin

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:11 PM

    May 25, 2001

    EA: "Fallen Comrades", Part 3 of Ongoing Quest

    Have you read the third chapter in the current GM-developed, cross-Shard plot scenario? It's called "Fallen Comrades," and it can be found in the Ultima Online BNN fiction-news secton, here. But, you've had a busy day, so you sit back, kick up your heels, and I'll just post it below:

    Fallen Comrades

    Kneeling down, Gebrek felt the body of a bloodied orc and stared in a moment of confused silence at the disarray before him. More than twenty of his comrades� corpses lay around the campsite in patches of blood-soaked soil, some still clutching the long pole weapons that had slain them. The tents were undisturbed, as was the campfire. His hunting party had hardly been gone long enough for the day fire to move in the sky. He sat still, thinking, trying to comprehend what could slay so many warriors so quickly. It wasn�t until he heard his hunting party behind him mumbling to each other that he remembered his new position of leadership as a poweruser and began barking orders in his guttural tones.

    As the party spread out over the camp, Gebrek breathed a grumbling sigh. Orcs always obeyed a user of the power, no matter what their age, but Gebrek was still nervous. Not many day fires had passed since he had been considered too young to use the power without guidance from an elder poweruser. And he had many seasons left before he would be powerful enough to be recognized as a mage himself. Or so he thought. Now he was a mage and in command of his own party. That is, what was left of it.

    Why was this happening? More and more of the young were being named as mages and fighters. Did the clan need the young so badly? Had so many orcs been lost that children were needed to defend the clan? For the first time he could remember the mages had even resorted to bestowing the power on helmets for the warriors. Gebrek couldn�t remember the mages ever putting the power into something for a warrior. Nor could he ever think of a time when a warrior would ask for a way to use the power. Usually both were too proud. Usually one did not need the other.

    Half of the orcs in his party were too young to be warriors, too young even to be away from the fort. No warrior would be named when he was still so inexperienced that he feared battle, much less run from it as many of the new warriors had. Of course it was hard to blame them. Many of the battle lords who had known great glory as warriors were using the new helmets for an extra advantage. Most of those that had remained with the camp wore them. Now they were dead. And whatever killed them did it quickly and easily, despite the new helmets.

    He walked around the perimeter of the camp observing the others as they checked their dead comrades and rummaged for anything useful, hoping the sight of orc corpses would not escalate their fear. Slowly small piles of supplies started to form by the campfire and Gebrek began considering his options. Whatever had killed the battle lords would make short work of the younger warriors, with or without the helms. As much as he wanted success on his first outing, he knew that this weak, inexperienced group of fledgling warriors would not be able to make the first strike to find new homes.

    One of the young orcs lumbered up to Gebrek and grunted, holding out before him what looked like an orc face. Gebrek turned and tilted his head in curiosity. None of the dead had been missing a face. Reluctantly he took it with a scaly hand and almost dropped it in the same instant. This was not flesh! And it held the power! A false face that contained the power... no orc would make such a thing.

    Again he looked over the campsite. Their best warriors were all dead. No sign of a struggle. False faces that held the power. An unseen killer. Gebrek could feel his youthful fears creeping into him again. Something was destroying his kin. The orcs were running out of time.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:05 PM

    May 24, 2001

    Player-run Naval Battle Tournament

    Lord Val Isildur-Kai recently posted the following "heads up" regarding a Naval Battle for players. I saw the post on the Golden Brew message board, here:

    New Player run NAVAL BATTLE tourney posted. *READ*

    Get all the info on UO.COM's baja calendar page. Info just submitted, so it may take a short bit to update. Here's the skinny: Crew competition, 6 members per ship. 12k entry fee per crew. Special guildstone to sign up on day of the event. Meeting place for gates to the Elvenwood House of Lights to be provided on Saturday the 26th at 1:30 pm Pacific time. Crews will engage in naval combat in a large lake. Last crew left floating takes home 240K. Special prizes and rewards to be given out in addition. Contact me via email or ICQ at 101650043 for detailed info...or read the calendar info on uo.com for the full story.

    Posted by Nobody at 9:24 AM

    Preliminary Lumarian Fundraiser (Trammel)

    Tonight on the Baja Shard we will be hosting a fund raiser to help bring about the revival of the old player city, Lumaria. Everyone is encouraged to stop by. We will be accepting donations to help new players gain housing in the city of Lumaria and to rebuild the structure of the city. Afterall, you can't have a player town if there are no buildings!

    We are accepting all donations, not just money. Anything is welcome as we have a number players new to our world that wish to help, but have nothing. Even if you'd like to just stop by and wish us Luck we would love to see you. If you do wish to make a donation of gold, please give it in the form of a check if it is a large amount.

    The event will be held in the Counselors Guild hall on the Trammel facet in the City of Britain tonight at 7pm EST.

    The event will run until we've all gotten fashnickered and can't stand anymore.

    Contact: dracusslayer@cs.com or through ICQ at 60316679

    Thalanos,
    Elven Ranger and founder of New Lumaria

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 2:03 AM

    May 23, 2001

    EA: NetOps has a Deathwish - and he speaks!

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    NetOps has a Deathwish - and he speaks!

    This update comes to you from Sean "Deathwish" McMains. I started at Origin about 8 months ago as a web application developer after having become dissatisfied with life as a dot-com drone, ironically at another company in the Origin building. After moving downstairs to Origin proper, I was quickly taught to swim by being tossed in the deep water of maintaining our customer management and billing system.

    In spite of having been a long-time fan of Origin, I'd never actually played UO before coming to work here. Now that I've spent a good deal of time in the game and in the company, I'm convinced that for someone looking for deep gameplay in a Persistent State World there's nothing to compete with UO. (And with UO:3D, we're getting a bit of the eye candy too.) Since we've narrowed our focus solely to UO in the last couple months, we've been able to put even more effort into improving the game and its supporting systems. One recent improvement I'd like to bring to your attention involves the communication between the systems where you pay and the systems where you play.

    As you know, to play Ultima Online, you have to pay a certain amount monthly. The server that's responsible for maintaining that billing information is completely separate from the server that decides whether or not you're able to log into the game. So, years ago, a system to transfer information from one server to the other was built. Though this system worked fine under normal loads, it would on occasion get a bit behind when there was an exceptional amount of data to move.

    One instance of this occurred only last month, when we opened a new Japanese shard. The enthusiasm of the Japanese players was such that the shard filled to capacity within minutes of its opening, and stayed maxed out for days. We were thrilled to get such an enthusiastic response from our loyal fans, but unfortunately the database that serves the login servers began to show signs of strain. Though players were still able to log in to the game, our data transit system wasn't able to get its job done as efficiently as we hoped.

    Our team immediately came together and started moving the data manually to ensure that players who had paid for the UO service would be able to play. This, however, was obviously a short term solution. After analyzing the situation, several of our database experts -- Mike "AviStetto" Howard and Doug Mellencamp most notably -- decided on a design for a new data transfer system that should be more efficient and robust than the one we had been using. After presenting their plans to our supervisors, they decided to go ahead and build the new system, estimating that it would take two days of a couple of our guys' time.

    They set feverishly to work, and were ready to flip the switch right on schedule. We were all excited to see the results of the work, since the new system was simpler and would theoretically be much easier to maintain than the old one was. They made the switch, and were delighted to see the old system shuttling the data around as much as 30x as fast as was previously possible. Best of all, the very farthest behind it's ever gotten now in the couple of weeks that it's been operating is only about 8 minutes, and it averages much closer to 2 minutes -- far better than we'd ever seen with the old system.

    This is just one example of the kind of improvements that are being made to UO daily. They're not all big, glamorous things that you notice right away when you log in. But we hope that, as we continue to improve UO's foundations, that you'll eventually notice even fewer interruptions, and will just be able to get down to the serious business of GMing that character you've been working on.

    Sean "Deathwish" McCains
    Network Operations
    Origin Systems

    Posted by Nobody at 1:11 PM

    May 22, 2001

    Battle Vortex Interviews Adrick

    Battle Vortex recently was able to interview Pete "Adrick" Warner, one of the designer for Ultima Online. This audio interview is 64 minutes long, and you can go here to listen to it.

    The description of the interview topic from that page is below:

    Interview with Pete "Adrick" Warner, Designer for Origin Systems. Focus on Factions for UO. Topics Include Election system changes, Blues in strongholds, falling sigils, kill point issues, quitting factions, point banking, joining factions and hiding in Trammel, Blue interference, bug reporting for faction issues, communication, point mules, guild changes, player interactions, reputation system, murderer reprieve, thieves in Factions, stronghold balance, faction armor, Warhorses, silver rewards for kills, Bards in factions, and more...

    Posted by Nobody at 1:19 PM

    May 21, 2001

    EA: Gromm on the Stage

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Gromm on the Stage

    Evening everyone,

    "All the world's a stage..."

    One of my favorite quotes, growing up acting. I loved acting in plays. Later I got into improvisation and fell in love with it even more. I became addicted to going up on stage with another actor and being given something random by the MC to create a scene with. The whistle would blow. We had to react and start a scene and make people laugh. We never knew what was coming next and by comparison, acting in plays got dull for me. I still loved acting, but improv was and always will be my favorite. I'll get back to that in a moment.

    So right now we're looking at our big stage, Britannia. We've had this stage for a long while now, and we've done some very interesting things on it. We've changed the set a few times. We added a few magnificent actors with brilliant scripts. Occasionally we tossed in a new prop. Like I said, we've done some interesting things on this stage. Now we want do to something *with* it.

    We're going to take what resources we have and try out a new style of theater. Ladies and germs, it's time to improvise.

    Think of us (Cal, Augur and myself) as the MC. We're going to call out a scene bit by bit, and we want to see how you react. We're going to make new sets, build new props, and do some new tricks with the stage. You are the actor. You are the star. How you react is up to your character. There is no script.

    Now don't think that we've abandoned the idea of a plot! These sets and props aren't a random assembly of ideas. They all go together, forming a cohesive background story. But it's just that, the background. You are in the foreground.

    This is not a quest engine. That would be handing you a script. We're presenting you with a situation. A change that makes the world itself the stage, a more interesting place for your character to live in and react to. We want to surprise you. We want to keep you on your toes. We want you to expect the unexpected. At the same time, we want you to be able to see what's going on in the background situation and see it react to you. Improvising as you go and living in the situation makes you a part of the plot.

    This is our first run, so we're watching closely and we're going to be reacting as well.

    As Im sure some of you are aware, the first scenario has already begun. Many of you have been finding and unlocking the secrets of the new orc mask. A new situation has been placed on the stage. Actors, play your roles as you will; it's improv time. You are now creating the script as you go...

    Enjoy,

    Gromm
    Designer, Ongoing Content
    UO Live

    Posted by Nobody at 8:40 PM

    Rebuilding Lumaria

    Greetings, I'm writing to inform you of the work that is now in progress to rebuild the city of Lumaria on Felucca. I have dug through contact after contact and have located a former member of the Lumarian Council known as Oceanus.

    I've been striving to find volunteers that will dedicate themselves and help us bring back the city. Oceanus and I have spoken about raising funds for those who wish to purchase a pre standing house in the area of the city as there are a number of them up for sale. The bridge that was constructed by OSI for the city still stands as well, which is inspiring in itself.

    I'm writing you because I want to draw peoples attention to this, this city was one of the first to be built, especially on Baja. It lasted for a long time before falling. It would bring attention and possibly even adventure to an area that seems almost barren.

    If you could do something, a small post even to let others know what we are doing it would be wonderful.

    My name is Thalanos, Elven Ranger of Baja. I can be contacted at dracusslayer@cs.com or through ICQ at 60316679 for those that are interested.

    Thank you, and god speed.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:00 AM

    May 20, 2001

    Crafter's Faire and Grand Opening of Celestial Spirits

    Greetings, friends! I was honored with a pigeon from Ursula earlier today, as follows:

    Hi all! Just a reminder for Sunday...

    The Township of Heaven's Forge and Darkmor Tavern invite you to our first Crafter's Faire and Grand Opening of Celestial Spirits, the newest pub in the land.
    Sunday, May 20th, 11am-1pm PST
    Darkmor Tavern, Heaven's Forge
    The tavern is located at 106o 47'N, 50o 16'E on the eastern edge of the valley south of Wrong Dungeon.
    Bring your own resources.
    There is a rune for Darkmor at the Brew.
    I received this message while in Golden, but, alas, I have not the magical skills to bring me there in an instant. However, I ran to my boat and in a reasonable amount of time I was in the Heaven's Forge area.

    I joined the start of the celebration at the Darkmor Tavern and Smithy. There were quite a few of Bajan notable figures there, including Ursula of the Golden Brew, UO Stratics reporter Cymidei Fier, even Azalin the Lich Lord!

    I spent most of my time there sitting next to two fascinating gentleman, Sarbazian Krote and Rhyll, and orc. Sarbazian, thinking Rhyll an orc spy, was relentless in his investigation regarding the orc plans for the rumored upcoming orc-man war. Rhyll feigned ignorance clearly a posture befitting any good spy!

    There was an enjoyable raffle that was held. For 200 gold one could buy a ticket book, each ticket seemed to win something wonderful! Tamlin, the keeper of the prizes, handed out prizes left and right, confirming "Everybody wins!" Although not normally a "gambling man," I was so intrigued that I bought a ticket book...and won several semi-rare items! All this while a man, named Abhor if I recall correctly, rode around on his llama, giving everyone free ale.

    I wasn't able to stay for the latter half of the party, as it moved to another building, but I sketched the picture below to show everyone how very many people were there, having fun and being social. I even included my rare items in the picture! I shall have to make sure I return to the Darkmor Tavern and the town of Heaven's Forge very soon.

    Posted by Thellaren at 2:25 PM

    GameSpy Reports on Ultima Online at E3

    Tina "Dragoness" Haumersen wrote an article about Ultima Online from information she gathered at E3 for GameSpy.com, which can be found here. Here's the introduction for the article:

    Ultima Online
    The Dragoness continues her dogged pursuit of the Ultima team and brings you latest information.
    By - Tina "Dragoness" Haumersen


    Rick Hall was producer on UO: Third Dawn
    When I was originally scheduled to meet with David Swofford to discussion the future of Ultima Online, he mentioned that Paul Sage, Ultima Online's lead designer, would be with him, and Kirk "Runesword" Black, UO's lead programmer and executive producer, might possibly even join us. That was about nine days ago. Since then, both have voluntarily left Origin Systems for parts unknown. So instead of meeting with them, I ended up meeting with David Swofford and Rick Hall.
    Below is the third of the article's five paragraphs, concerning the new system for events that's under development for UO.
    One of the improvements that is coming soon is a global event system which will allow for serialized fiction, stories arching over a period of time, which they can use to introduce new storylines, new monsters, new equipment, etc. Each cycle will last about 8 weeks, then another cycle will begin after that. It will even be possible to have different outcomes to the storylines per shard and world, although it doesn't sound like the branching stories will be long lasting. It seems as though once a new cycle starts, all shards and worlds will begin at the same place once more.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:39 AM

    May 18, 2001

    EA: Log - In Servers

    The following was posted to the Shard Issues of the Ultima Online Web page:

    Log - In Servers

    The log-in servers are not accepting players at this time. Until this issue is resolved, you will not be able to log into the shards. Players who are already connected to the shards will be unaffected. We are working to correct this issue and will update you once more information is available.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:38 PM

    EA: Sign up for the UO Newsletter!

    The following was posted to the FYI page of the Ultima Online Web page:

    Sign up for the UO Newsletter!

    Want to keep up-to-date on all the latest news in the world of Ultima Online? From spotlights to shard openings, to news about patches and new systems, the Ultima Online Newsletter is sent out once a month, and only to those who have subscribed. It's coming next week, so make sure you don't miss it - click here to sign up today!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:37 PM

    Sage and Runesabre leaving!!!

    The following was posted to UO Stratics:

    Rumor Mill - Sage & Runesabre Gone?

    UO Stratics has received several "unofficial" confirmations today that both Paul Sage and Kirk Black will soon be leaving OSI and Ultima Online. To further back up the story, here is an article that Jinx just posted on his own website, The Chosen:
    I've heard from a few sources that Paul "Sage" Sage and Kirk "Runesabre" Black are leaving UO. As always this is a rumor, but with Sage going to E3 "unofficially" to hang out with an "old friend who is not in the business", it stands to reason (in my deluded mind, anyway) that he is going to see about hooking up with Richard "My Alter Ego is a Registered Trademark" Garriot's new company or possibly to hook up with the Star Wars Galaxies team (either way he'll be with former friends from OSI - OSI has more or less supplied every MMORPG development team in existence with at least 2 or 3 warm bodies).

    None of this can be confirmed at the moment and its all heresay and rumormongering, but, hey, this is the company formerly known as OSI, where heresay and rumormongering is a way of life. If it is true, we here at The Chosen wish them the best and hope Sage can come up with a better handle than his last name in his future endeavors.

    - Jinx
    For those not familiar with their names, Sage is the current Lead Designer of UO and Runesabre is the current Producer. In other words, this could mean big changes for UO.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:00 AM

    May 17, 2001

    Player finds a mask of orcish kin

    There's been a lot of discussion and speculation about the upcoming orc quest/scenario being developed by the UO Interest Developer(s) on the Ultima e-mail list at Yahoo!Groups. The following announcement was posted by Grey to this list:

    FOUND IT!

    A green hued orc mask titled - a mask of orcish kin

    When worn you take a karma loss but orcs will NOT attack you.

    Your form does not change, you still look as you normally do. It just looks like you are wearing an ordinary orc mask colored green.

    Killed 4 orc mages before I found it.

    Grey

    Posted by Nobody at 6:41 PM

    EA: UO Player Luncheons

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    UO Player Luncheons

    Have you ever wanted to meet other UO Players face to face? Nearly 1000 players attended the UO World Faire in November 2000 to meet one another, share experiences, and participate in discussions with OSI representatives in Austin, Texas. But did you know that UO players have been holding UO Fan Events in their local areas since 1998? Some annual events are already in their fourth year!

    To find a player event in your local area, visit the newly updated Luncheons page of the Communities section of the uo.com website. To submit an event that you are hosting, please send an email with the details to luncheons@uo.com.

    If you don't see an event listed in your area this year, why not consider hosting one yourself? Heather of Great Lakes has been holding Player Luncheons in Texas since October 1998, and she shares her experience in "How to Organize a UO Player's Lunch". If you need advice or support for holding your own player event, you can also email Heather directly at heather@uo.com.

    Several times a year, representatives from the UO Live Team are able to attend some of the larger player events around the country. During Q&A sessions at these events, players are able to voice their concerns and suggestions directly to OSI representatives, and have some of their questions answered. Even at smaller events, players often have the opportunity to win prizes, such as Ultima T-shirts and CDs, for answering UO related trivia questions or for winning costume contests.

    If you have questions, tips, hints or suggestions, or would like to participate in discussions about Player Events or the World Faire, please visit the UO Fan Events and Luncheons board.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:38 PM

    EA: Comments from Cynthe

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Cynthe

    Hey there,

    Many of you have seen my name since I pounced onto the boards in March, but some of you may not have any idea who I am. :) Im Cynthe, otherwise known as Amy Sage in that other thing we call real life.

    Like many of the recent Comments from the Team, Ill start off this one with a bit of an introduction. Im a native Texan, and attended the University of Texas, studying Music, English, and German. In 1998 I was hired on at Origin to help out the Ultima Ascension team with some database work (okay, so its a glorified way of saying data entry, but hey, you have to get your foot in the door somehow). After six months of doing some behind-the-scenes design work, I was hired on as a full designer, and stayed on until the game shipped. After that, I accepted the position of Community Coordinator for Ultima Ascension. The position was a good fit for me, because I knew the game well, and well I tend to talk a lot. :) In February of 2000 I moved on to the role of Community Coordinator for Ultima Online 2, later to be called Ultima Worlds Online: ORIGIN. This role included weekly website updates, as well as lots of posting on message boards and answering questions in the community when possible.

    So now on to the present after the decision in March of 2001 to concentrate on Ultima Online, I moved over to UO, filling the position of UO.com Content Editor/Writer. To say the pace has picked up would be an understatement. I used to think that weekly updates kept me pretty busy. The UO site is another beast altogether the updates are daily, and at any given point in time there are twenty people waiting for information, updates, and changes done to different sections of the site. Talk about a lesson in scheduling!

    Ive had people ask exactly what the Content Editor/Writer does. Well, it's important to note the term "content" in there, since that's my domain. The actual design and appearance of the website, and the coding of the sections is not done by me - we have an extremely talented web team with an incredible knowledge of web design and code. And as for editing and writing, I actually seem to do a lot more of the former than the latter, but thats mainly because the communitys more interested in hearing the developers talk than the editor. And thats certainly fine with me! My tasks include things like soliciting/selecting/editing weekly spotlights, Comments from the Team, and the daily alerts (which involves deciphering the emails between the billing department, the network operations group, the development team, and the support group to figure out exactly what these things mean for the players and make sure that theres something on the site to let people know whats going on). Im also now in charge of keeping the site updated, which is a gargantuan task, and one I have only begun.
      *side note - Im well aware that there are many pages that could use an update. Im always cool with getting emails about those pages I file them into my list of things to fix folder.
    And since I, for some reason, always find it difficult to pull myself away from the community front line, I also try to help Melantus on the boards when I can which in and of itself could be a full-time job. Since Im much less experienced with UO than Melantus, I tend to focus more on board moderation and trying to keep things reasonable and civil, leaving him free to address more game-related issues.

    So Im always open to discussion, and I welcome thoughts on the website (keep in mind theres no way I can actually take all the suggestions I receive, but theres always the chance itll grab my attention and end up in that list of things to fix folder).

    Till later,

    Cynthe
    Website Project Supervisor
    Origin Systems

    Posted by Nobody at 6:36 PM

    May 16, 2001

    EA: Prying Eyes, Another Orc Tale at BNN

    Another BNN "Orc story" has been posted on the Ultima Online Web site, called "Prying Eyes," here. This is the sequel to "Dudagog's Tale, both of which are the prelude to a large, upcoming, in-game event.

    Here's the first paragraph of the latest tale:

    Prying Eyes

    Sitting high on a tree branch, the orc scout Milug peered through the branches at the city in the distance. As he watched the humies milling about, completely unaware of his presence as they bought and sold their wares, he could not suppress a scowl. Already he missed his fort near the human city of Cove. He missed the comfort of his hut, the daily brawls, and the occasional forays into the woods looking for prey. Even more strongly, he missed the smell of charred meat in the cookpots and the hoots of laughter as yet another orc mage inevitably earned a beating from one of the lords after setting something ablaze while practicing his arcane arts.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:23 PM

    May 15, 2001

    Opinions from Sage

    Sage posted to the Ultima e-mail list of Yahoo!Groups what I felt was a compelling insider's view of why some coding events in UO's past were needed and enacted. He brings up PKing, stat loss, the "need" for Trammel, responsibility for one's actions, player justice, the "easy escape" of Recall, and much more related matters. The post is long, so we've posted it into the Freeborn Press message board, here. Feel free to make any relevant comments you wish into that post's thread. Below is the first few paragraphs, to hold you over while the message board loads:

    Stat loss. Those two words strike fear into the heart of every PK in the game. To understand why stat loss was put into the game, you need to analyze the past of Ultima Online in an objective manner.

    Originally, the ability to kill an opponent in UO was a way for the players to police themselves. It was a survival of the fittest plan, where those people who bothered you could be killed by you. However, you could also be killed by people you weren't bothering, or kill people who weren't bothering you. The system did not try to divine intent, which is impossible for a game to do.

    Those who did not wish to be killed could stay in towns, which were basically safe areas. The problem, of course, was that towns were not very interesting places. Other than buying things from the NPC vendors, the only thing to do in town was bank. Even the bank was a paranoia zone, because while murdering was outlawed in towns, sneaky thieves could steal with very little worry of being caught. Players were more wide-eyed and paranoid than a mob stool pigeon on crack in the Sopranos house. At that time, you had to yell "guards" for a thief to be caught, unless an NPC noticed it and yelled for you. Thus many people created the macro "Vendor, buy, bank, guards!" Even towns weren't safety zones, and UO was basically a PvP world.

    So what did a PvP world really mean? Basically, it boiled down to might makes right. As most of you know, in UO, might is equal to time. The time you invest in your character usually means your character will become better (usually being the operative word, since some people don't spend their time on character growth). Thus those with more time to spend in the world could pretty much beat on (gank / r0xx0r) those who spent less time in the world, or those just entering the world. This, of course, created some pretty severe problems. As the game matured, you started to whittle down your playerbase because new players could not join the game without spending a majority of the time looking at a screen with more black and white than the first season of Gilligan's Island. Some new players were tenacious and willing to stick it out, but many weren't. Even older players got tired of getting beat on because they could not exact retribution.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:18 PM

    Story Night Continues.

    Please join old friends and new this Wednesday at 6:30pm PST, at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds [in Trammel, located in the farmlands northeast of the Skara Brae docks, on the mainland. -Ed.]. There are many tales in this land, come tell yours! Or if you're feeling brave, try your hand at Story Roulette!

    Posted by Nobody at 8:48 AM

    May 14, 2001

    Disney Gathering Reminder

    AngelStorm of the UO Chesapeake news site posted the following reminder about the player gathering in Florida's Disney World:

    Disney Gathering Reminder

    3rd Annual Florida Event
    June 22 and 23, 2001
    Clementine's Beach at River Country
    Walt Disney World
    Orlando, Florida

    Open to all players from all shards, the annual Florida event is a popular excursion for players from around the world.

    This year we expect nearly 150 players in attendance and have already confirmed that Runesabre will be joining us as well.

    Friday night (June 22) we will all be gathering for a dinner/happy hour gathering within City Walk at Universal Studios. This event is not included in the price of the main event tickets. This is a pay-your-own-way gathering.

    Tickets for the Saturday main event (June 23) will be $50 per person (sorry no discounts for children). Tickets will include the luncheon and entrance into River Country. There will be ongoing door prize drawings throughout the day, as well.

    You can find all the details on the official Florida Player Event site.

    Hurry and register today as all fees must be paid by June 1st! And don't forget to purchase your official t-shirt to wear at the event!

    See you all in June!

    Posted by Nobody at 6:58 PM

    Last Call for Texas UO Player Lunch Tickets

    The following message from Heather about a player gathering in Texas was posted to UO Stratics:

    Last Call for Texas UO Player Lunch Tickets

    Are you going to Scarborough Faire?

    The deadline for purchasing discounted tickets for the UO Players Lunch at Scarborough Faire, Waxahachie Texas, at 11:30am on Sunday, May 27th is fast approaching. Please pay $30 by paypal or snail mail by this Friday, May 18th. If you have already signed up for the lunch, be sure to check for your name on the Guest List. If you have not signed up yet, please see the Luncheons section of the UO Lunch webpage for instructions. Note: You do not have to purchase tickets to attend this event, but you will have to pay admission to enter the Faire. UO Lunch discount packages include faire admission and a catered lunch. If, after reading the webpage, you still have questions, please email me heatherc@austin.rr.com.

    Don't forget to purchase your Scarborough Faire UO Lunch 2001 t-shirts, mugs and mouse pads from the UO Lunch Custom Shoppe as soon as possible in order to receive them before the event. Arakasi of the 'Out of Character' comics, who did last year's logo, has created a fresh new design for this year's event.

    Can't make it to Texas this month? Check out other UO Player events on the Luncheons page on uo.com to find an event closer to you!

    Posted by Nobody at 6:54 PM

    3rd Annual UO Player Gathering in Las Vegas

    The following message from KingDavid about a player gathering in Las Vegas was posted to UO Stratics:

    3rd Annual UO Player Gathering in Las Vegas, June 22-23, 2001, Excalibur Hotel

    KingDavid of Sonoma is proud to announce that the dates for the 3rd annual UO Player Gathering in Las Vegas have been set for 2001. Players will meet at the "King's Window" (near check-in) of the Excalibur Hotel in Las Vegas on Friday, June 22, 2001, at 6pm local time.

    This is the 3rd year we have done this, and its open to all players from all shards. I anticipate that 30+ UO players will be there this year, and I promise it will be fun! If you are interested in coming this year, please icq me at 12875694 so you can get on my list for updates.

    We will meet Friday night, then walk to a restaurant and talk and have dinner, and then stay as a big group or as smaller groups for Friday night and all day Saturday. Most players will be leaving Sunday to return home, but there are always a few that stay an extra day.

    The Specifics:
    Where: "King's Window", Excalibur Hotel
    Date: Friday, June 22, 2001
    Time: 6pm

    Contacts:
    Coordinator:KingDavid
    David McLaughlin
    kingdavid@austin.rr.com
    icq 12875694

    Posted by Nobody at 6:46 PM

    Don't Throw That Bouquet Down In Disgust... Weddings Are Still On!

    The following message of hope from Former Lady Counselor Sapphire was posted to UO Stratics:

    Don't Throw That Bouquet Down In Disgust... Weddings Are Still On!

    In light of the recent demise of the counselor and volunteer programs, the weddings that were being done by counselors faced an untimely end as well. We, the former counselors, wedding coordinators, SRCs, and volunteers have created a bold new plan to ensure that the wedding program does not simply vanish.

    Many players have already scheduled weddings, or perhaps they are just now realizing that they would like to have a wedding and don't know where to turn. Enter the new cross-shards guild WED. We will be available on the Regions of West, East, and Central to begin with. If you are looking to have your wedding performed and need someone to perform it please keep us in mind, and although we can't make inscribed rings we can perform a ceremony that will do honor to both the bride and the groom.

    The contacts for each region are as follows:

    West (the shards of Napa Valley, Sonoma, Baja, & Pacific): garrye@hotmail.com
    West (the shards of Napa Valley, Sonoma, Baja, & Pacific): asrcmiller@acninc.net
    Central (the shards of Lake Superior, Great Lakes and Siege Perilous): ali00@mailandnews.com
    East (the shards of Atlantic, Chesapeake, and Catskills): SapphireEast@btconnect.com
    Former Lady Counselor Sapphire
    Wedding Coordinator

    Posted by Nobody at 6:43 PM

    EA: Melantus on Community

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Melantus on Community

    Hello all,

    I am Dwight Spaulding, a.k.a. Melantus. As you may know already, Im the Community Coordinator for Ultima Online.

    The past few months have been strange, difficult, hopeful and ultimately inspirational. There is a lot of desire behind the scenes here to improve UO, and to press forward even harder to make Ultima Online great. This is due in no small part to the relationship we have with our players, and the relationships of the players with each other. Though at times a bit of a bumpy road, our communication with the players has helped to directly shape UO and influence our way of thinking over the past months and years. Of course, that is all dependent on information flowing into our ears from you, and out of our mouths to you. And this is something Id like to talk about more: communication.

    Communication is perhaps one of the more difficult aspects of an online game. How players see the game and the company that runs it affects not only their willingness to continue to play (and pay for) the game, but also how they feel about future games that a particular company might release. Of course, there are hundreds of thousands of players in todays online games, and pleasing all of them all of the time is impossible. So at any point in time, someone will be hating (or loving) the game they play and whoever operates it.

    One question that players have asked of me is why we arent more open with them with our ideas or our plans. To some degree we are, but this is an area that has unfortunately been the source of trouble in the past. We certainly like to talk to the players about UO, and listen to their ideas about the direction the game should take.

    But about wishlist discussions, or even regular updates why are they worded like political talk? Well, we cant talk about systems off the top of our head that we havent thought out, or done initial design documentation on, or at least considered in a balancing regard, because what we say winds up getting taken literally, or even somewhat misquoted at times. Also, if we sound positive about a system or design, wed better be working on it, because players that like the idea will be expecting it to get actual attention and progress. Even for just a brainstorm session idea, you say? Surely not! I have had feedback from players telling me that they can easily distinguish between something thats just an idea and something thats been promised. And Im sure that concerning those people, that may be true. However, we have a very large community, and even just this week there have been two examples of our words being misinterpreted. So what difference does it make if we talk about something that is just an idea? Who cares if some people mistakenly assume that this conversation about the idea is a promise to deliver?

    Well, I care... because it means the integrity of our word. Whether we can deliver what we talk about is much more important than one might realize. Do we have a lot of fanciful ideas but no delivery? I would rather us take an idea - even if its based on the many great discussions on the UO Boards - and put a bit of necessary thought and research into it before openly talking about it with the players. Does this mean we dont or wont talk to the players about our ideas and the great potential for UO? No, we do a lot of talking with the players, and will continue to strive for that, but there is a need to be careful of what is said. In perhaps no other business besides politics is the words/information said looked over and examined so closely by the public. This is a good thing overall, because it definitely shows high interest. It also shows an unwillingness on the players part to just take whatever is given by the dev team, which is something I consider healthy for the industry. It means responsible communication by us, with the understanding that we need to not be so tight-lipped that our players feel were off in an ivory tower. I would rather we be respected for being able to deliver what we promise. I also want to try and minimize misunderstanding of what we say by posting clear information.

    Players still do get input into our changes and the direction of UO - more than they perhaps realize. Changes go into testing before release, where players can try the change out and give us feedback. We are open to the feedback, and have made many changes to upcoming systems based purely on that feedback. We also watch the boards, and see all of the wouldnt it be cool if... posts. All of this affects UOs direction. So players are involved to varying degrees, some of those degrees being quite involved. Being more open with the players is something Id like to work on, as long as there is no compromise of our integrity.

    Dwight Melantus Spaulding
    Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 6:34 PM

    EA: Account Management Downtime

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Account Management Downtime

    We will be conducting database maintenance on Tuesday, May 15th between 5:00 am and 8:00 am CDT. During this period, players will be unable to make account changes, including reactivation, creation, or cancellation. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:31 PM

    EA: 2D and 3D Client Patch

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    2D and 3D Client Patch

    We will be releasing a client patch on Monday, May 14th at approximately 2:30 pm CDT. This patch will contain art changes and updates, an updated credits file, and a bug fix to allow players to sell items to vendors in Ilshenar.

    The current versions should now be 3.0.1a (2D client) and 3.0.1d Build 63 (3D client).

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:30 PM

    May 12, 2001

    BYOR Crafter's Faire & Pub Opening

    The Township of Heaven's Forge and Darkmor Tavern invite you to our first Crafter's Faire and Grand Opening of Celestial Spirits, the newest pub in the land.

    When:

    Sunday, May 20th, 11am-1pm PST

    Where:

    Darkmor Tavern, Heaven's Forge
    The tavern is located at 106o 47'N, 50o 16'E on the eastern edge of the valley south of Wrong Dungeon.

    BYOR! There will be craftspeople of every sort represented to craft items for you at no charge when you provide the materials. Smiths, Tailors, Bowyers, Tinkerers, Carpenters, Scribes, Alchemists, Chefs and Poisoners, the entire crafting community of Heaven's Forge will be represented. Door prizes will be awarded throughout the event.

    Following the Crafter's Faire, wander with us across the valley for the Grand Opening of the Celestial Spirits pub, a rooftop alehouse hosted by Darius, Mayor of Heaven's Forge. The pub sits atop the Ring of Steel guild tower, and there will be free drinks and food all afternoon.

    Hope to see you there!

    Posted by Nobody at 10:01 PM

    Richard Garriott is in the Gaming Business Once Again

    Richard Garriott, creator of the Ultimas (including Ultima Online) and late of OSI/EA, has begun the process of announcing plans for his next project(s). He's got a Web site up for his new Company, "Destination Games," located at http://www.destination-games.com/. There's nothing there yet except for a "splash page," but you can bet the players and producers within the gaming industry are all watching eagerly.

    Posted by Thellaren at 10:17 AM

    Baja Community Honors Ex-Volunteers

    The following article by Cymidei Fier was posted to UO Stratics:

    Baja Community Honors Ex-Volunteers

    Today players gathered from all over Sosaria to honor the senior counselors, counselors, elders, and seers that have served the community.

    What started as a small group at 6:00 PM soon grew into a large crowd. Everyone donned a colored robe and held a candle. Soon people started talking about their memories of the volunteer program.
    I overheard many players from the community giving heartfelt thanks to the seers and counselors who have helped them over the years. The following ex-volunteers came tonight: Eliar, Meredith, Lady Geri, Justinarius, Tearyl, Lord Jim, Cupid, Athena, Illithana, Tar, Paul, Tarragon, Takara, Gar and Verkat.

    The sentiment of the gathering seemed to be "I can't believe its over..." One of the ex-counselors said "It was over too soon! I just went solo three months ago...I was so excited." She was not alone in her sadness. A seer in training for Baja also said, that he was only days away from earning his robes.

    It was a privilege to get a chance to talk to the volunteers that have helped us, entertained us, and been there for us. Each one in their own way helped to make Baja a better place. They will be remembered.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:55 AM

    Baja Leads all of UO in Faction Kills

    While reading various pages on the official Ultima Online Web site I came to Baja's Faction page and was impressed by some of the numbers. Here's the top five ranked Faction Guilds on Baja:

    Baja Faction Guild Rankings
    GuildFactionKill Points
    The Lords of DeathMinax4720
    Grudge Inc.True Britannians2585
    Knights 0f VengeanceTrue Britannians621
    M&DShadowlords509
    Unidentified Mysterious AgencyCouncil of Mages442

    The Lord of Death are clearly putting years of experience to work. Skipping on down to the Baja Faction Member Rankings we see these top five kill-leaders:

    Baja Faction Member Rankings
    MemberFactionKill Points
    GalenMinax3575
    Grudge IncTrue Britannians2084
    FritsyMinax756
    The JanitorTrue Britannians617
    AriakCouncil of Mages439

    Curious about overall rankings, across all the Shards, I loaded up the main Factions page and saw the following top five Faction guilds:

    Overall Faction Guild Rankings
    GuildFactionKill Points
    The Lords of DeathMinax - Baja4720
    Grudge Inc.True Britannians - Baja2585
    Punishment of AsiaTrue Britannians - Formosa1276
    Fallen AngelsShadowlords - Lake Superior1199
    Force of ImmortalMinax - Formosa1140

    Baja's best scores above and beyond other Shards, and we have the top two Faction guilds! I scrolled down the page to check out the "Overall Faction Member Rankings." The top five are shown below:

    Overall Faction Member Rankings
    MemberFactionKill Points
    HehlafLOLShadowlords - Chesapeake4335
    GalenMinax - Baja3575
    Little SusyTrue Britannians - Sonoma2299
    Grudge IncTrue Britannians - Baja2084
    Accompanist CatMinax - Formosa1686

    Here we see that Baja has two of the top five Factioneers of all time. Congratulations, Galen and Grudge Inc!

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:49 AM

    Gamasutra: EA's Q4 Results Better Than Estimates

    Gamasutra reported the following concerning Electronic Arts, here:

    EA's Q4 Results Better Than Estimates

    Electronic Arts has posted its fourth-quarter results, beating analysts expectations for the company's quarterly loss by a penny per share. Consoldiated net revenue for the fourth quarter was $307.3 million, up from $294.3 million in revenue for the same period last year. The consolidated net loss for the fourth quarter was $17.9 million, or 13 cents per share, compared with net income of $3.4 million (3 cents per share) for the fourth quarter last year. The company incurred a one-time pre-tax charge of $2.7 million in the quarter related to the acquisition of Pogo.com.

    For the fiscal year ended March 31, 2001, Electronic Arts reported net revenues of $1.322 billion, compared with $1.420 billion for the prior fiscal year. The company posted a consolidated net loss for the year of$11.1 million (8 cents per share), compared to the prior year's net income of $116.8 million (88 cents per share).

    CEO Larry Probst said in a conference call to analysts that he expects the company's 2002 operating income to increase 75 to 90 percent on a year-over-year basis, estimating revenue growth in the mid-teen range.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:12 AM

    Game Developer Magazine Editorial on The Passing of a Legend

    Chuck Walbourn's "Soapbox" editorial in the June 2001 issue of Game Developer magazine [Web site] reflects on "The Passing of a Legend," referring to Origin Systems. For those of you who don't, or won't, have this magazine, below is part of his introductory statement to the editorial:

    The Passing of a Legend

    Origin Systems has always been to me like some Ivy League college, an institution beyond my reach or means. Many refer to it as "Origin U," a place where young, creative people went to learn if they had the chops to make games. Attending Origin U required starting at the bottom usually working in the QA department or as a technical design assistant and working outrageous hours for very little pay. A college degree was as helpful in getting into Origin U as it would be at an Army boot camp more of a handicap than anything else.
    Mr. Walbourn continues on with a sense of respect, or even awe, for Origin in it's early days, leading into his sense of loss with the more recent developments of the cancellation of UO2 and all "in-development projects at Origin." He continues later on with the following thoughts:
    It certainly seems a sad ending for one of the founding institutions of our industry. Some will no doubt blame Origin's demise on the "suits" at Electronic Arts, but I suspect the company culture was also to blame. There is no doubt that Origin's development teams demonstrated creativity and vision aplenty, but according to many ex-Originites I have known over the years, the teams were often plagued by a lack of engineering discipline and productivity, relying heavily on the efforts of a dedicated few. There is probably an ex-Origin employee in your organization who can attest to this.
    He finishes with the following:
    The age of heroes is past, and while we remember the buzz of those wild days, we should also remember the wasted human effort, personal lives, and money which could have gone to worthy projects instead of keeping developers in the manner to which they had been accustomed ["...when content was king and developers controlled the concept"].

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:07 AM

    May 11, 2001

    Baja Interest Tribute

    Join with friends old and new to celebrate the Interest People of Baja. They may be gone, but let's show them how much they meant to us with a Tribute.

    Friday night (Tonight) at 6pm PST please gather at the Counselor's Guild in Britain, Trammel (Large wooden building with new statues next to it, behind the large mage shop). Wear Blue (Counselors), Purple (Senior Counselors), Brown (Elder) or Green (Seer) colored robes and carry a candle in honor of these people who have spent countless hours bettering our lives.

    Posted by Ursula at 8:46 AM

    May 10, 2001

    Statues in Tribute to UO Volunteers

    Last night, monuments to the Volunteers of Ultima Online we placed next to the Counselors' Guild Halls in Britain on all Shards, both Felucca and Trammel facets. The monument, as shown in the accompanying screenshot, incorporates several foundation blocks and adornments, including two statues (one blue, seemingly representing Counselors, and one green, seemingly representing Seers, Elders, and Troubadours) standing over three plaques.

    The first plaque, tinted blue, reads "In recognition of the Counselors of Britannia, who have brought the light of knowledge to the people of this realm."

    The second plaque, tinted grey, reads "In recognition of the Volunteer Testers, who have helped exterminate the vile insects that occassionally plague the integrity of the realm."

    The third plaque, tinted green, reads "In recognition of the Seers, Elders, and Troubadours of Britannia, who have inspired the world with their legendary tales."

    All three plaques are shown below.






    Posted by Nobody at 6:33 PM

    A Thank You From Sage

    The following from Sage, Lead Designer of UO, was posted to UO Stratics:

    A Thank You From Sage

    As all of you probably know, for obvious reasons, we are limited in what we can say about the volunteer program going away. What I can say, and what I think needs to be said is "Thank you." Sincerely. I have been associated with Ultima Online as long as anyone. I saw the birth of the volunteer program and I watched the first people get indoctrinated into it.

    Yesterday I saw people questioning the motives of Counselors and Seers, and that stunk. I don't want to go into a long diatribe, I just want to thank you for your passion, your kindness, and your willingness to help others. I hope you continue to show that same Compassion in all of your endeavors; it is a strength, not a weakness.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:16 PM

    Tiberian Temple Offers Wedding Services in Lieu of Counselor Ceremonies

    The following from Vega of the Tiberian Temple was posted to UO Stratics:

    Tiberian Temple Offers Wedding Services in Lieu of Counselor Ceremonies

    It was just today that I heard the sad news that all the counselors have departed the land. One of the most important duties that counselors performed was to join couples in marriage. It is in light of this development that I wish to announce that the Tiberian Temple is available to perform wedding ceremonies. The Tiberian Temple's Philosophers have served as virtuous guides for many of Britannia's noble adventurers for some time now. Their duties have also included officiating weddings of some of the most prominent people of the land.

    If you would like one of our Temple philosophers to perform your wedding, contact me by either ICQ (preferably), or by email. Click here to view theTiberian Temple Establishment Review

    Vega, Tiberian Knight
    ICQ: 94711196
    tiberian_temple@yahoo.com

    Posted by Nobody at 6:14 PM

    Terdeus Hall Honors Volunteers

    The following was posted to UO Stratics:

    Terdeus Hall Honors Volunteers

    Terdeus Hall will be closing its doors in honor of those volunteers who have dedicated their time and their effort to help us over the years. Terdeus Hall has locked its doors and will not re-open them until Friday Night at 9:00 PM PST (05/11/01.) When we re-open our doors, we wish to invite all volunteers to come visit Terdeus Hall in a night dedicated to those who served us for so long. The Volunteer Program will be missed by all.

    Terdeus Hall can be located between Britain and Trinsic in the Trammel Facet of Baja. (49o7'S 34o6'E)

    Posted by Nobody at 6:13 PM

    Invitation to all Volunteers & Their Friends from Chesapeake Scribe

    Korin the Scribe, of Chesapeake's City of Haven posted the following invitation concerning UO's ex-Volunteers:

    May 10th - A slight change in plans.

    First of all that me once again apologize for delaying the Quest for a Champion event. But something a little more pressing has surfaced in our world.

    As most of you now know the "gods" have canceled the Ultima Online Volunteer program. Having once been a member of this program myself I know the dedication and sacrifices these people have made over the years. All in the name of helping out their fellow players. The fact that their are now gone has angered many people within our realm. But what we should realize is that while this is most definitely a sad day in UO. We need to get past our anger and show these people the appreciation that they truly deserve.

    So in honor of ALL the Volunteers that have served our community over the years we will be holding a "Honors Dinner". It will be held at the Britain Counselors Guildhall in Trammel (here on Chesapeake) on Saturday the 19th at 9:00pm EST. This event is open to ALL volunteers from any shard. So if you were a volunteer and can attend please do so. We want to show you all how much you have meant to us.

    I hope every player out there willl join me in honoring the great people that have given so much to us over the years. See you then!

    Korin the Scribe

    Posted by Nobody at 6:02 PM

    May 9, 2001

    Lum the Mad Investigates Cancellation of Volunteer Programs

    Lum the Mad is also reporting about the cancellation of the UO Volunteer Programs on his site of the same name, as follows:

    We asked Susan "Leilo" Kath some followup questions about this decision. Her responses:

    Your notice mentioned that the volunteer programs had been "reassesed". What factors specifically drove this decision? In particular, was the ongoing ex-volunteer lawsuit pending against EA a factor in this decision?

    As the lawsuit is still in the early phases, and there won't be a decision on it for a long time, the decision was an independent one made by EA to change the business structure.

    So this decision was taken by EA as opposed to Origin Systems?

    Yes, the decision is company-wide.


    We also asked "Terendil", the ex-volunteer who is the main litigant in the lawsuit against EA that still is in progress, for her reaction to this news.

    I'm not surprised, given the issues that existed in that program. I'm also not surprised, given the current state of AOL's lawsuit and our own. Also, the fact that EA has been making some extremely poor business decisions such as cancelling UO2, may mean that they may simply no longer have the customer base to maintain a volunteer program. I'm terribly sorry that this affects the wonderfully dedicated volunteers that will no longer be active in the game community.

    This does not affect our current lawsuit.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:09 PM

    EA: Ultima Online Program Changes

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Ultima Online Program Changes

    In the coming weeks and months, Ultima Online players will begin to see changes to the UO experience that will affect and impact the game in many ways as we update systems, introduce new content, and continue to grow and expand the world of Britannia.

    In addition to systems and design changes, we will address how Origin supports Volunteer programs. Effective today, May 9th, Ultima Online will no longer host Interest, Quality Assurance, and Counselor Volunteer programs in North America and Europe. Though its a difficult decision for us, it is based on the reassessment of our online, company-wide business structure as we address growth and changes in the online entertainment industry. As a result, volunteer programs throughout all of Electronic Arts have been affected by this reassessment. This decision does not affect the existing volunteer programs in Japan, nor does it currently affect the Companion program.

    Whether answering questions, creating intriguing and amusing events, or aiding their fellow players in any number of ways, these volunteers have enriched their own Ultima Online experience and helped fulfill the Ultima Online experience for so many other members of the UO community. A permanent acknowledgement to these volunteers will be placed on both facets of each affected shard, located near the Britain Counselor Hall.

    Over the last several years, players volunteering in Ultima Online have assisted their fellow players with great creativity, aptitude, and grace, and our thanks go out to all who have participated in these programs since their inception. This commitment to UO, as well as the commitment of hundreds of thousands of players worldwide, is the foundation on which we hope to grow and support the game far into the future.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:03 PM

    Deploying Summoned Water Elementals From A Ship

    This interesting piece was posted to Turbulent Waters today:

    The water elemental, being one of three completely amphibious beasts left in Britannia, is a natural choice of mages fighting from their ships. While summoned daemons might offer better spellcasting and melee abilities, the water elemental does offer the ability to launch off the deck of one's ship and move freely on the waves.

    Unfortunately, there's a few problems with this ability. First and foremost, the ship's plank must be unlocked and extended for the summoned water elemental to disembark onto the water. And then, there must be an arranged line of sight between the elemental and its target lined up so that the elemental is coaxed into doing so. In other words, if the target is off the bow, the elemental will make a straight line for it and stop at the front of the ship. The target must therefore be off to the side a ways when the command is issued to attack.
    You can read the rest of this piece here.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:55 AM

    May 7, 2001

    New King and Queen Champions Chosen in Dawn

    The town cryer of the Kingdom of Dawn recently made the following announcement for King Desmond Cross:

    New King and Queen Champions Chosen

    Last night in the fabled Star Room deep in the heart of the Terethan Keep, the monthly tournament was held to select the King and Queen's Champions. Will Avengem, as normal, hosted the event.

    After many valiant bouts between combatants, Eagle once again won the right to bear the title "King's Champion", defeating even War Child, who voluntarily relinquished his "Queen's Champion" title to compete.

    The battle for the right to be the Queen's Champion came down to a duel between Caesar and War Child. After a long and grueling battle, War Child accidentally crossed the teleporter into the Terethan Keep, normally an instant disqualification! Although Caesar offered to continue the battle, War Child declined. Thus, Caesar was chosen as the new Queen's champion!

    Geldric Falko was also knighted by the King for his valiant efforts in the competition.

    Well met to the new Champions, and our thanks for all who competed and participated!

    Posted by Nobody at 8:05 PM

    Imperial Anniversary Ragata Great Success!

    After the wedding, the guests searched the countryside in search of hidden ale bottles and Messages in Bottles. Next we launched our ships and tossed dozens of nets into the sea, causing krakens, deep-sea serpents, water elementals and sea-serpents to spawn! It was a lively hunt with lots of loot! Fortunately there were no casualties!



    Finally we set sail from Lore Island to the Docks of Vesper. There were three crews; Captain Shard's Pink Pirates, Trekkon's Crown of the Sea, and Midian's Brothers of the Sea. Trekkon's ship landed first in Vesper claiming the 100,000 gold prize! The other crews each received 25,000. Everyone had a grand time! Thanks for coming!



    Sincerely,
    Lady Cymidei Fier
    Lord Azalin Lore
    The Shadow Imperium

    Posted by Nobody at 12:02 AM

    May 5, 2001

    Improvements for Ships in the Works

    The following was scribed on Thursday to the Turbulent Waters site, UO's primary source of news for all things relating to the sea:

    In tonight's UO House of Commons chat OSI was finally presented with a comprehensive question about the state of ships and sailing in Ultima Online, and their response came as quite a surprise. The question was answered by UO Dev team member Vex who offered specific issues that will be addressed in the "publish after next".

    Lyria - When will the seas be given a review (spawn, ships, UO:3D effects, e.tc.)? I'm concerned that the sea is stuck in a bad circle ; small audience leads to no enhancement, which leads to no new audience and no new enhancement...

    After a long silence , Vex responded:

    We have some improvements for ships in the works for the publish after ext. We plan on addressing shoreline blocking, boat security and several other issues.

    So at some point hopefully soon there will be a publish. After that there will be another publish with some basic and much welcomed work on ships and ship- related issues. Let's wildly speculate on what each of the issues Vex brought up might mean for ship users in the near future :

    "...shoreline blocking...
    Unattended ships left along the shore have been a problem since the beginning. Before the ability was added to drydock and recall to one's ship, the docks of every city and the shore surrounding it were clogged with ships at all times. The problem of unattended ships has shifted more now to high spawn areas and long open stretches of north-south longitudes.

    So what solution is in the works for ships that block areas along the shore? A faster decay rate along shorelines (that'll take care of my neighbor's 10-ship- never-moves-bank-boat-flotilla)? Automatic drydocking at server up with any items in the hold being deleted? In-character "storms" that sweep unattended ships near the shore out to sea?

    "...boat security..."
    Boat security is a term that could cover several aspects of ship security. They could be working to eliminate certain long-standing tricks to board locked ships. Another possibility is to give the ship more owner-related status as is the case with housing in the game. Currently, saying "I ban thee" on one's ship does bring up a targeting cursor, that has no effect on other players or monsters. Perhaps the ship's placer and key-holder may be designated the owner, and the tillerman might gain additional functions of some sort. Or maybe all they are going to do to make ships more secure is to make all ship keys "blessed", which will really irk the thieves I know. Whatever changes they make, these will be the changes that every player who owns a ship will need to know.

    "...and several other issues..."
    Okay, now we go into the bonus round, where we have to speculate with nothing at all to go on. What are the several other issues? Here's a few possibilities:

    1. Server boundary crossings
    2. UO:3D water graphics revamp
    3. The Haven barrier bug
    4. Multiple players on a ship causing excessive lag/moonwalking


    No hint was made here that anything other than ships themselves are being looked at. The issues of changing the seas themselves to make ship use more interesting, by creating some new and different monster spawns for example, will probably come only after the ships themselves are working better. It's going to be a long summer. This is great news, though.

    Posted by Thellaren at 3:07 AM

    EA: Prequel Fiction: Rumors and Such

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Prequel Fiction: Rumors and Such

    Rumors of orc sightings and talk of missing sheep has been percolating through some of the towns of Britannia. Could this be a natural migration? Some of the resident orc experts don't think so.

    "Well, I used to see orcs all the time near my house in Cove, but I haven't seen one for days," reported Dwiggit, a resident of Cove and a long-time orc hunter. "They didn't even come around when I replanted my garden, and they've trampled that garden every season for two years."

    Well, whatever the reason, it can only be assumed that the orcs are moving. Why? No one knows... except perhaps the orcs themselves.
    That link at the end of the FYI article leads us to the BNN World News section, specifically an article entitled "Dudagog's Tale." The first paragraph of what seems to be the next multi-Shard plot is reproduced below:
    Dudagog's Tale

    A sore eye encrusted with blood, received as a blessing for questioning the elder shaman during the previous nights war council, was a minor irritant in a long line of irritants that Dudagog had learned to accept. Although it had been only twenty cycles of the day fire since the shaman council had rolled the bones and driven the tribe to move, Dudagog could barely remember the logs and bone piles he called home. He could remember the rich hunting ground though. Always fresh deer and hummies to munch on, and the strength of a combined tribe of hundreds had made life as good as it gets for an old, fat orc. In his younger days Dudagog would have perhaps enjoyed this nomadic lifestyle, but age had given Dudagog a wisdom that only comes through corpulence; hunting is good, but sitting down for a meal is better. Thus when Dudagog had questioned the shaman about the wisdom of his training the young orcins to hunt with the new long way killer, the shaman elder chastised him with a swift staff to his eye. Dudagog was not stupid enough to retaliate in kind, as the shamans had been known to cause the air around an orc to burn as hot as the home of a lava lizzie.
    Read the entire "Dudagog's Tale" here.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:39 AM

    May 4, 2001

    EA: Seeking Tales of Home

    The following was posted on the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Seeking Tales of Home

    Everyone has a special place that will always feel like home. For some people, it's the town where they started their first character, armed with only a few meager possessions. For others, it's the player-run town where they set up their first reagent shop, or the tavern where they met the person they'd eventually marry. Tell us your story of the place you call home, and let us know what's special about it!

    Send an e-mail to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, May 11th. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include Hometown in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to uo-profiles become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:48 PM

    EA: New Shard Maintenance Schedule

    The following was posted on the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    New Shard Maintenance Schedule

    Effective Monday, May 7th, the Oceania, Siege Perilous, Formosa, and AOL Legends shards will be updated to a daily maintenance cycle. Maintenance on these shards will take place at their regularly scheduled times. The downtime schedule located at http://support.uo.com/downtime.html will be adjusted on May 7th to account for these changes.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:47 PM

    EA: Prophet Speaks on Veteran Rewards

    The following was posted on the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Prophet Speaks on Veteran Rewards

    Hail Citizens of Britannia,

    As we begin public testing of veteran rewards, I believe this is a good time to stop for a bit and discuss it. If Im correct, many of you are thinking, What happened? Why was the system so late in the first place? Why is it so late coming back? Well, I hope to answer many of those questions in the following paragraphs, as I explain the history of veteran rewards from the beginning to the present. I apologize in advance for the lengthy nature of this document, but as we all know, veteran rewards have been in development for a long time!

    I want to preface that explanation with a very short account of my history here at Origin. I started working on UO in September of 2000 as a server programmer, dealing mostly with the back-end server systems of UO. Since then I have touched just about every section of code in one way or another, either through bug fixes or new content addition to all the various servers and both clients. My first encounter with veteran rewards was in November of 2000, so all my information from before that time has been re-constructed from conversations Ive had with the various developers who have worked on veteran rewards.

    Ok, so whats so special about veteran rewards and why is it so complicated? After all, you did the Christmas gifts without a problem! Well, with veteran rewards, we are trying to distribute a limited amount of gifts by account over all shards rather than by the number of established characters per shard. There were several reasons for this - for one thing, storing extra data slows backups down and generally decreases the performance and lifetime of the server. As well, by distributing fewer gifts, we make them more intrinsically valuable to the players.

    So everyone involved at the office decided that the idea of distributing gifts by account was great. Right from the start, two significant issues were recognized as problems that would have to be solved. The first was that shards had never talked to each other before - ever! So we were going to have to design and implement a method in which they could trade information, and have this system operate in real time. The second momentous task was the calculation of account age. As it stood, a shard knew how old any one character was, but did not know the amount of billed months an account had. That information was stored in a database deep in the heart of the operations group - a completely different team than the UO live group.

    The task of getting the account age to the servers was given to the operations group, and the live team took up the task of getting the servers talking to each other. Development continued for a while as planned, and things appeared to be working out well. In the summer of 2000, problems surfaced in the account age determination method. The operations group suddenly discovered that the method they had designed was hindering operation of one of the back-end servers. They informed us that they would need to redesign their solution. In an effort to keep to the planned release date, it was decided to attempt to solve the account age problem from within the UO Live team. The UO team then started work on a completely different way of calculating the account age. The new method showed promise, and the shards were successfully talking to each other, so rewards were opened to the public for testing. This is about the time I came aboard. The programmer primarily responsible for veteran rewards was moving onto another project and they needed someone to maintain the system. I was given that responsibility.

    During the initial testing phase, we received quite a bit of concerned player feedback, which convinced us to re-evaluate the rewards. We pulled rewards from testing and re-designed a number of the reward choices. By this time, veteran rewards was a few months behind schedule, and with factions on the way we were running out of resources to develop and test rewards. Factions were just about ready for launch, so a push was made to finish it. Development on rewards was frozen during this period.

    Just before the Christmas holiday, we had a meeting on when we would launch rewards, detailing a plan that would launch the system without interfering with the final developments of Third Dawn. A major push was made to test the system and eliminate any bugs. It was launched on Sonoma, and a major problem was found and fixed. We then proceeded to launch on the rest of the North American and European shards.

    I should pause in the story to mention some of the flaws in the system that we only found later. The veteran reward system was initially designed as a simple data storage system. Over time, it has been modified to be specific to veteran rewards. During all these modifications, one of the primary design goals was to have multiple safeguards to prevent a player from ever losing a reward during a backup and not being credited for it. The failure here was that little was implemented to prevent people from getting more rewards than they were supposed to.

    This is the point where things really went awry. First of all, the central data server was getting requests for account age and reward information over 200 times a second. The problem was that each of the calls took half a second to compute. In other words, every 60 seconds the server was getting 100 seconds worth of work to do. This meant delays that quickly grew out of hand. People soon had to wait 5, 10, and even 15 minutes before they got to choose rewards. Then, to make matters worse, the server system would run out of memory at times, after which it would halt all work and try to reclaim that memory. This reclaiming period took approximately half an hour. Of course, during this 30 minute period, requests for information kept piling up, making the delays even longer.

    So our first pressing issue was that it was taking over 500 ms to calculate the account age of a player. This was aggravated by aggressive information polling on the shards that caused it to hit the data server more often than it really needed to. We immediately got to work to come up with solutions as fast as possible. Within a day, we had come up with stopgap solutions to both these problems, and by prime time the next day we were looking much better.

    Things appeared to be working fine, except for a trickle of reports from the player base that people were getting extra rewards on the European shards. We quickly investigated these reports. Part of the veteran reward system gives us the ability to see who is taking what reward, and how many rewards any one account has taken. Our generated reports told us that everything was fine. Little did we know that the server was telling us this because of a flaw in the program that was corrupting the data. The next day, the trickle continued, so we looked a bit harder at our reports and checked the raw data. Eventually we found one possible loophole that could have caused a few extra rewards. This was immediately fixed. However, we still hadnt found the more serious flaw mentioned above. In a few more days, the trickle had become a flood. I just couldnt believe the server would be lying to me - all the tests we ran showed things were working just fine! At this point, we looked hard at the raw data and uncovered some striking discrepancies in it. It was then that we finally found the problem and pulled rewards.

    We stepped back, took stock in what had led us to this point, and discussed what we could do to fix rewards. A fix was found for the flaw but no one wanted to re-launch the rewards system without putting it back on a test center. The problem at this point was that we didnt have the resources to test rewards, as we were well into the alpha of Third Dawn. In order to keep from skipping around and dividing our focus, it was determined that all development had to be put on hold until after Third Dawn launched.

    After the release of Third Dawn, we took another long look at the rewards system. What we found was that too much had been patched into the system since its original design, adding too many unknowns. It was determined that we would clean up the back-end system. Over time, what started as a clean-up and an attempt to add more fail safes turned into an almost complete re-write of the system. The new system makes sure players will always get their allotted number of rewards, no more, no less. We also added more tracking and logging information, and we should be much better equipped to analyze whats going on in the future.

    So thats pretty much were we stand today. We hope that you will take the time and test our rewards on our test shards. The more people we have trying out the system, the more confident we will feel that we indeed have a stable and robust system.

    Yours truly,
    Christian Prophet Lassonde
    Lead Programmer
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 5:46 PM

    EA: Third Dawn Alpha and Beta Tester Map Offer

    The following was posted on the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Third Dawn Alpha and Beta Tester Map Offer

    In appreciation for participation in the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Alpha and Beta Tests, we are extending the following special offer allowing Alpha/Beta testers to order one of our collectors edition, full-color cloth maps of the original and Lost Lands of Britannia. This offer includes the map and cost of shipping for $5.95 domestic (U.S., Hawaii, Alaska, Guam, U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico) or $6.95 International.

    To purchase the map as part of this special appreciation offer, please visit http://www.uo.com/tyou. You will be asked to enter your Ultima Online account name/password to validate your alpha/beta participation status. Please note that you must use the Ultima Online account name for which you registered as an Alpha or Beta participant. Shipping and delivery times may vary, but most domestic orders should be received within 10 business days and most International orders should be received within 21 business days. As CafPress will be fulfilling these orders, your credit card statement will show billing from CafePress.com.

    After completing your order, any questions related to order tracking or shipping should be emailed to customerservice@cafepress.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:35 PM

    Reminder: May Day Festival in Golden this Saturday

    Come celebrate the changing of the seasons
    May 5th, 2001

    Please visit http://townofgolden.net for full details and directions.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:15 AM

    May 3, 2001

    Imperial Anniversary Regata

    *A messenger arrives with an elegant scroll*

    Imperial Invitation

    Ye are cordially invited to join Emperor Azalin Lore and Lady Cymidei Fier in celebration of their First Anniversary.

    May 6th, at 6 Pm PST at the Golden Brew. Counselor Mystic shall preside over the ceremony. Feasting, hunting and merriment to follow.

    Events:

    The Great Sea Hunt - Fifty nets will be thrown into the sea causing all manner of krakens, sea serpents and water elementals to arise from the depths. All treasure will be given to the guests!

    Boat Decorating Contest - Creatively embellish your vessel with flair and ye may be the lucky winner of a 50,000 dollar purse!

    The Great Yacht Race - The first ship and crew to sail from Lore Island to Vesper shall receive 100,000 gold.
    Sincerely,
    Emperor Azalin Lore,
    http://www.shadowimperium.com

    Posted by Nobody at 11:57 PM

    EA:A Word From Marketing

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    A Word From Marketing

    As UO nears its fourth birthday, which is an amazing feat for a game that was only supposed to last one year and garner less than 50,000 players, we are focusing more on what got us to this point and how we can keep the game exciting for another four years (at least!). Specifically, we are thinking about what our players want from us as a committed company and how we can keep both the in-game and community experience thriving.

    To that end, we are looking to conduct a number of focus groups and online surveys this year, and solicit the feedback from our players on what their needs are within a number of areas - so look for those in your email box if you have opt-in status. We understand that some players have felt that their feedback has gone unheard, but the truth is that it is more likely used much more than you might think! We do hear and implement individual player feedback, but often in a subtle way that integrates other ideas as well. We also want to bring our community more into the forefront of our thoughts and deeds by re-invigorating the website, and adding some new promotional content, thereby providing opportunities for our players to have some fun while visiting the site and maybe win some UO goodies as well. Additionally, we are looking at ways to promote exciting events and player stories within and across shards, as well as enhance our tips and tricks related information to enable more of you to gain insight on how to prosper in Britannia.

    Finally, we are considering hosting another UO World Faire. There was a strong turnout last year and we received a lot of great feedback on how to improve on the original model. It is not a sure thing but we are keeping our fingers crossed that we can make it happen. So, if you have any thoughts on the Fan Event front, be sure to bring them up on the UO Fan Events and Luncheons or the Discussions Board; we would love to hear them.

    Our goal this year is to focus on our most valuable asset - You, our customer. So, dont be shy - use the Boards and let us know how we can improve your game-play experience and your website experience. And, when and if you meet us at the Fan Event, hey, maybe we can sip some ale and you can tell us how we're doing!

    The Marketing Dept.
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 6:12 PM

    EA: Ultima Online Customer Service Employee Terminated

    The following announcement was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Ultima Online Customer Service Employee Terminated

    On Wednesday, May 2nd, Origin Systems (OSI) was alerted to the possible misconduct of an individual employed within the GM Support Department. Upon investigation, OSI found reason to believe that this employee was engaging in activities that breached the trust that must exist between a company, its employees, and its customers. The decision by OSI management in this case was immediate dismissal. All actions that are taken by members of our support staff are logged and monitored, and we investigate all reports of GM misbehavior that we receive. We are grateful to players who bring these incidents to our attention, as these reports are used to ensure that OSI representatives are providing the best possible service at all times. If you believe that a GM or any OSI representative is behaving in anything less than the highest standard of service, we ask you to please email uoconcern@uo.com with the details of your issue. Only the most senior representatives of our support staff read this mailbox, and we assure you that your issue will be thoroughly investigated. We take our responsibility to our customers very seriously, and we will not allow anyone — staff or otherwise — to abuse our terms of service or the trust of our customers.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:29 AM

    May 1, 2001

    EA: Login Server Maintenance - May 2nd

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Login Server Maintenance - May 2nd

    We will be taking down the login server database to perform emergency maintenance upgrades on Wednesday, May 2nd at 11:00 AM CDT. This maintenance period is expected to last approximately three hours. During this time, customers will not be able to log in to any Ultima Online shards and any account changes, updates, or creations will not be activated until the database maintenance is completed. Customers who are logged in to a shard prior to this time will not be disconnected, but will not be able to reconnect if they do disconnect. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:48 PM

    EA: Comments from Adrick

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Adrick

    Greetings,

    My last comments were back in November around the time of the UO World Faire, an event I enjoyed very much. It was fun to meet the players and hear what the community had to say about the game and the future from their individual perspectives.

    In these Comments, I thought I would take some time to let people know what it is Ive been doing over the last several months and what I am currently working on.

    Right after the Faire, I was given the assignment of managing a new project - localization - from the design side. What a task it was, and we are still working on it! It was a huge learning experience for me, and even to this day the magnitude of what we had to do is mind boggling. Our goal was to make the game accessible to non-English speaking players with as minimal an impact on our current playerbase as possible. This was challenging, because when the game was originally designed it was not done so with the intent that it would be localized. Many things had to be rewritten - some from scratch - to accommodate our supported languages. During this process I learned a ton about how the game works. I was on the project for about 4 months and over its course I made changes to over 500 scripts - the biggest portion were all of the gumps in the game. Things like the house gump, the faction gumps and the guildstone gump had to be rewritten to allow them to be localized. So why localization? Ive heard that question a lot. The reason we localized UO is to expand our playerbase by bringing UO to people that would not have any interest in playing the game because of the language barrier. The result of this is that as the UO playerbase grows, our resources from the development side will as well. The current team is the largest ever in the history of the game - the prospect of a growing and expanding playerbase is what allows us to do this, and that means better quality content delivered on a more regular basis.

    Now that Third Dawn has shipped, the designers have once again been given areas of the code to manage. Im very pleased to be working on the faction system, the guild system, and all player/player interactions such as reputation, trade and the party system. All of these areas are of great interest to me, and as we move forward it will be my primary focus both to clean these systems of bugs and exploits and to stabilize them. I am currently working on fully documenting these systems and identifying the bugs that need to be fixed.

    Im particularly excited to be working again on the faction system and building on the initial design that I helped write and code when I first joined the team almost a year ago. I think the faction system can be improved and expanded in many ways. The area I am most concerned about is the amount of blue interference that is occurring in and around the strongholds and in the 8 faction towns, and I am working on several ways to limit this or remove it altogether. In addition to this problem, I'll also be focusing on other bug fixes and balancing issues over the next few weeks. The second area I am responsible for is the guild system, which I think is one of the most important systems in our game. It is a great community builder and organizer, and a way for people to work together towards a common goal. I expect to be spending a lot of time making these two systems work together, as they overlap in many areas and depend a lot on each other. The final area (player/player interactions) is also a challenge. Ill be responsible for making sure that these interactions are bug and exploit-free (mostly regarding scams), and working to provide the players with a comfortable experience when interacting with other players (at least from a game mechanics standpoint).

    Well, thats it for now - thanks again for your time, and as always feel free to contact me at my email (Adrick@uo.com)or on the boards with suggestions, ideas and concerns.

    Take care,

    Pete Adrick Warner
    Designer - Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 2:31 PM

    EA: Account Management Issues

    The following was posted to the FYI page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Account Management Issues

    The account management site is experiencing considerable delays in updating information. We apologize for the inconvenience this may cause for players and we assure you we are taking steps to resolve these delays.

    Posted by Nobody at 2:24 PM

    April 30, 2001

    EA: Patch 62 live!

    Cythne sent us the following announcement, about a recent FYI posting on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Patch 62 live!

    The following notice was just added to FYI. However, there was initially a line that referred to various art modifications having been made in this patch. That line was just removed a few minutes ago, when I was informed that further QA time was going to be needed on those changes, and they were in fact not in this patch. My apologies for any confusion!

    We're happy to announce that we have eliminated several issues that had been
    impacting the performance of the Third Dawn client. This client patch will
    be released on April 30th at approximately 4:00 pm CDT, and will include:
    • Substantial memory leak fixes
    • Various crash bug fixes
    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit
      http://www.hitchhikers.net/antivirus/antivirus-dis.phtml.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:56 PM

    April 29, 2001

    Confrontation Near Fairhaven

    A Fairhaven patrol was dispatched this evening with orders to range east of the village looking for clues regarding the recent murders. The patrol route included a sweep of the local crypts, which have long been the source of various undead creatures. The leader of the mission, Fizban, an elder of Fairhaven, led his troops inside where they began searching for clues.

    Before long, they discovered a passage which led up to a large stone mausoleum infested with undead. The villagers managed to fight their way through, and on the top level they had quite a surprise. A woman, Aria, was there, and behind her was an abomination. It looked somewhat in appearance like a cross between a man and a decaying lich. It's parts looked as though they had been hastily assembled, and its patchwork skin was decaying and pus-ridden.

    The villagers demanded an explanation from the woman, but she was not very forthcoming. She ranted and raved about her "creation" and how it was better than any of her previous attempts. She admitted to killing the farmers, saying she needed the parts to complete her pet. Her bragging was mingled with screaming threats to the villagers to leave her abode, on pain of death. The determined patrol would not depart though, and so she ordered her pets, demons, elementals, and even the lumbering lich-man to dispose of the trespassers.

    A fierce fight ensued, with the villagers pitted against elementals of magic and wailing undead whose howls can take the courage from even the heartiest warrior. The battle raged all over the complex, and one man was slain when an earth elemental snuck up behind him and twisted his neck. The villagers fought back, though, and eventually the woman and her creatures were slain. The lich attempted to escape, but its magic appeared to fail it when its mistress was slain, and it was hacked to pieces.

    The body of the woman Aria was dragged back to Fairhaven where she was revived. She claimed not to remember her crimes, or even her name, but the villagers demanded blood as vengeance for their slain comrade and the murdered farmers. The woman was in no condition to discuss her crimes though, and so she is now in the custody of the village council pending a full investigation. The only clue recovered regarding this mysterious incident, besides the woman herself, was a dusty journal found in a chest in her stronghold. The journal was stained with water and blood though, and was mostly unreadable.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:44 AM

    April 28, 2001

    OSI Rep for Disney Luncheon Confirmed

    AngelStorm, of UO Chesapeake Daily News, had this information about the player gathering at Disneyworld:

    OSI Rep for Disney Luncheon Confirmed

    We are happy to announce that Runesabre is confirmed to be joining us in Disney.

    We will shortly be announcing the details for the Friday Happy Hour.

    Please visit the luncheon site (http://angelsrealm.net/uodisney) to register today.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:18 PM

    May Day Festival at The Golden Mage Tower

    Petrus of the Golden Mage Tower sent us the following exciting announcement:

    May Day Festival

    Come celebrate the changing of the seasons!

    May 5th, 2001
    • 2pm PST - The Golden Mage Tower
      Dart Throwing Contest
    • 3pm PST - The Golden Mage Tower
      Magic Encyclopedia Contest
    • 4pm PST - The Golden Brew
      Panty Raid II
    • 6pm PST - The Golden Globe Theatre
      Spring Swing Dance
    Please visit http://townofgolden.net for full details and directions.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:19 PM

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon!

    Tryon from ImaNewbie does Britannia sent us the following announcement:

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon!

    Hail and Well Met :)

    This week ImaNewbie investigates the effect that being able to customize vendor costumes has had on shopping in Britannia. Check it out!

    Added Saturday, April 28th, 2001:
    - Episode #139: Shop 'Till You're Dropped

    ImaNewbie does Britannia

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 2:49 PM

    April 27, 2001

    The Results of the Mystic Mead Dart Tournament

    The following message from Trekonn was posted to UO Stratics:

    The Results of the Mystic Mead Dart Tournament

    Greetings!

    I am pleased to announce the Mystic Mead Tavern had another successful dart tournament over the weekend. Friday night ended with Durin Stonecrow the high scorer with 90 points, a fine score indeed. On Saturday, Bjorn's Brew flowed freely and many were to drunk to throw straight. Alas, Maganamus III would arrive and top the high score by one point! The high score of 91 points would stand to earn him a check for 13,600 GP!

    On Sunday evening, we had the week's prize drawing for all who participated over the weekend. Fire Ninja walked away with a brand new shadow suit and a coupon for 5,000 GP good at the OMK Marketplace next door to the tavern.

    Congratulations to you both! This week's prize drawing for participants will be another fish net and SOS bottle, back by popular demand. Remember, all you have to do is throw once to be eligible for the drawing on Sunday. The tavern high score still stands at 110 points by Razagal. Beat this score and recieve an additional 5000 GP! I hope to see you all there over this coming weekend.

    Thank thee,
    Trekonn,
    The Hierophant
    The Mystic Mead

    Posted by Nobody at 7:56 PM

    EA: Comments from Canyon

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Canyon

    When I was asked to make a post for the Comments from the Team, I felt that it would be a good opportunity to introduce myself and discuss how customer service is addressed from a training perspective. Im known as Canyon, and I am currently in charge of training for the Player Relations group. One of the questions people ask me at player gatherings is how I ended up with Origin. I graduated from a small liberal arts school in San Antonio a few years ago, but my degree in Political Science isnt really put to use when teaching someone how to deal with problem players. My minor in Sociology helps a bit, as does my teaching and customer service background.

    My first experience with an EA game was Wing Commander 3. I then went back and played all the Wing Commanders, and Privateer 1 and 2. Oddly enough, I never played any of the Ultima games. That changed when Ultima Online came out. I had to wait several weeks to get a copy, since it was always sold out in the stores. My first week of the game was tough (I was one of the newbies that got killed by a deer), but I made some friends who showed me the ropes, and I was hooked. I found my niche as a roleplayer, and quickly became a part of the UO community.

    I got my break in the industry as a volunteer, and I eventually became a Game Master in September of 1999. I have worked as a Game Master, Senior Game Master, and I am currently responsible for training in the Player Relations department. When new hires join the team, I work with them for several weeks, introducing them to the game and the responsibilities they will have as Game Masters.

    It has been a challenge to create a training division for Player Relations, but it has also been very rewarding. All new hires get consistent training that teaches them the latest policies and issues. We also have ongoing training for GMs when issues change, or when we add new features to the game. Training is a priority because we recognize that the Game Masters need to have the tools and knowledge to provide great customer service. We also conduct testing so we can see how well GMs understand the issues that they have to deal with in game.

    We recognize that providing great customer service is essential for us to remain competitive. We have all worked very hard to improve the level of service that we offer, and we have made great strides in both the quality and quantity of service we offer to players.

    When I go to a restaurant and receive bad service or food, I dont go back. And if I am really displeased with the service, Im going to warn everyone I know about it. Not only will the restaurant lose my business, but the restaurant will most likely lose the business of my friends and family. The positive side of this is that when I have a good experience as a customer, Ill go back and also recommend it to my friends. I understand that our customers do the same thing with Ultima Online, and we want to keep our customers happy with the service that they receive.

    I understand that players will not always be happy with the outcome of the call, but I want to make sure that the GMs are doing their best to give the customers great service. There will be times when GMs have to tell the player no, but this should always be done in a polite way that educates the customer on why we need to follow a certain standard of conduct. Its my job to make sure the GMs understand what this standard is, and the best way to apply it in customer interactions. Regardless of the outcome of the situation, we want the customer to feel they dealt with someone who was polite and professional who was knowledgeable about the situation.

    Canyon
    Player Relations
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 7:34 PM

    Game Revolution reviews UO:3D

    Baldric from Game Revolution recently reviewed Ultima Online: Third Dawn. The entire review can be found here. Below is the "summarizing" last two paragraphs from the review, along with their "report card" for UO:3D:

    Now if only they could make it 4D...

    The game has changed a whole hell of a lot since I wrote that first review years ago. The near elimination of server lag and fixing most of the ways people used to be able to cheat have improved the game a lot. But not all the choices made by the design team have thrilled me. Ah well, you can't please everyone, and UO (not in 3D) is still a damn good game.

    While preparing for this review, I ran into more than one player online who had actually removed Third Dawn from their computer and reinstalled the old client. And frankly, I'm going to do the same thing as soon as I finish taking screen shots. Then I can get back to battling for control of Britannia in the name of Minax. All I ask is to be made sheriff of Skara Brae.

    Revolution Report Card

    C-

    + 3D!
    - Not very good 3D
    + New land
    - Fluffy nicey-nice new land
    - Buggy
    - Old client is just plain better
    + UO is still a good game
    * Join another faction so I can bash you

    Posted by Nobody at 8:44 AM

    EA: Spring Festival Spotlight by Ursula of the Golden Brew

    The 84th Spotlight at the Ultima Online Web site is by Baja's own Ursula of the Golden Brew. Congratulations, Ursula!

    The entire tale is told here, and the introduction to it is below:

    Spring Festival

    One of the few things more enjoyable than a holiday is the chance to spend it with friends. And even better than that is the opportunity to win lots of gold!

    This week's story tells of a unique holiday celebration, complete with polymorphed chickens and tame rabbits. Curious? Read on for more about springtime festivities at the Golden Brew.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:03 AM

    April 26, 2001

    UO-Disney Luncheon Information

    AngelStorm recently sent out the following announcement:

    UO-Disney Luncheon Information

    Good news!

    The web site for the UO-Disney luncheon is open for registration and has been updated with all the pertinent information!

    Please take a look and register today! http://angelsrealm.net/uodisney

    --Angel Storm

    Posted by Nobody at 6:36 PM

    The Grand Opening of the Frenzied Mongbat Casino

    The following from Xavier and Sampson was posted to UO Stratics:

    The Grand Opening of the Frenzied Mongbat Casino

    Please join us for our Grand Opening on Tuesday, May 1st at 7:00 CST. There will be many games and prizes for those that attend. Door prizes will be handed out, and we will also have a raffle. The raffle tickets will be 2k each, and prizes will include a Glacial Staff and a Snowglobe among many other items and a grand prize gold amount at 9:00 CST.

    Along with all this, our dealers will be maintaining three other gambling games throughout the opening, from 7:00 to 9:00 CST. If you need a rune to the Casino you can ICQ Sampson @ 112455386 orPlease join us for our Grand Opening on Tuesday, May 1st at 7:00 CST. There will be many games and prizes for those that attend. Door prizes will be handed out, and we will also have a raffle. The raffle tickets will be 2k each, and prizes will include a Glacial Staff and a Snowglobe among many other items and a grand prize gold amount at 9:00 CST. Along with all this, our dealers will be maintaining three other gambling games throughout the opening, from 7:00 to 9:00 CST. If you need a rune to the Casino you can ICQ Sampson @ 112455386 or Xavier Arcanus @ 85756751.

    So come join us and play Xavier's Magic 24, 'Round the World, Lucky 7's...bring checks if you need to we will have money on hand to cash and make change and will also have vendors on site acting as Cashiers with checks on them so you don't have to go back to the bank.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:25 PM

    The Baja Chef's Faire

    The following from Moff Tarkin was posted to UO Stratics:

    The Baja Chef's Faire

    When: 10am PST (17:00 GMT) Saturday April 28, 2001 (See also this Time Zone Converter for help with time zones.)

    Where: The Darkmor Tavern in Heaven's Forge, Trammel, Baja Shard. The tavern is located in at 10657N, 5054E (It's a large tower, directly south of the entrance to dungeon Wrong.) Gates will be opened from Darkmor Tavern to inside the Britain West bank every few minutes starting at 9:45am.

    Who: The Chef's Faire is organized by the Britannian Society of Chefs [BSC], hosted by Dread Lady Sy Snootles, Grandmaster Chef.

    Why: The Chef's Faire is a cross shard event hosted bi-monthly on a shard by shard Basis. It's purpose is to highlight the Cooking skill and to generally just have fun. There's always plenty of free food and drink for everyone, so be sure to stop by!

    What: Aside from copious amounts of snacks and beverages, there will be over 100k gold in prizes! The featured events are:
    • The Poison Drink-Off Thirsty? Be ready to lose fame and earn some cash. The first one to die wins. Contestants will be paired off for individual rounds. (I'll be resurrecting the contestants myself after each round, so no worries there.) First place receives a 25k check, second place receives a 10k check. You must have a minimum of 50 strength to qualify for this contest. Contestants may only die from the poison provided. Any other attempts to commit suicide or lemming one's self will result in disqualification.
    • The Chef's Scavenger Hunt Retrieve a small collection of common items, themed on food and Cooking. There will be several different rounds, 10k will be awarded to the winner of each round. (Without giving too much away, an example would be: "I want breakfast. First one to bring me bacon, eggs, and a muffin wins!")
    • Funniest Pet Name Contest Has your trusty steed "Orc Bait" been craving attention? Did you name your ostard "an elder chicken"? Well, this contest is for you. Contestants and their riders will be judged by a panel of Chefs; First place wins 10k and second place wins 5k.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:18 PM

    VirtualGamerz.com reviews UO:3D

    VirtualGamerz.com recently reviewed Ultima Online: Third Dawn. The original review is here, but the entire review can be read, below:

    GAME NAME: Ultima Online: Third Dawn
    GAME TYPE: PC
    Written by: A.J. McLellan

    (amclella@attcanada.ca)

    The everlasting multiplayer online roleplaying game, known as Ultima Online, continues to grow even today. With the release Click to Enlargeof the new expansion Third Dawn, players are now playing in an enhanced 3D client, and are travelling through the new world of Ilshenar.

    There are plenty of exciting new features included in Third Dawn, such as new creatures, an outstanding particle system, various new sound effects and improved music, improved expandability, and last but not least, the exciting fulfilled world of Ilshenar.

    Advantages and disadvantages are part of every game. Third Dawn shows a little bit of both. Due to the early release of this expansion, there are still a fair Click to Enlargeamount of performance and hardware issues, however the new patching system allows the these issues to be easily resolved, instead of working around them as seen with the UO:Renaissance client in the past. New patches are constantly being created, and are released almost every week. The new expandability system has many improvements that UO:R didn't have in the past, this creates the opportunity to continuously improve the game.

    The new land of Ilshenar is designed for adventuring. It consists of several hunting grounds, dungeons, shrines, and finally, settlements. Settlements are the 'towns' in Ilshenar, they are NPC village-like areas, located all over the world. Each settlement has various different NPC buildings, where you can buy and sell your goods with NPCs, these settlements have banks as well.

    Ilshenar also provides a wide variety of creatures, such as animals and monsters. There are several new creatures that can be seen Click to Enlargein the world of Ilshenar, as well, there are plenty of the original Ultima Online: Renaissance monsters. All of these creatures can be seen in various locations throughout the lands of Ilshenar, especially in the dungeons. This world offers several dungeons to explore, all of which offer something different, and new to adventure.

    There are various ways of transportation in these lands, all of which are convenient. You can move by foot, or by mounts such as horses, ostards, and llamas. There are rumours that famous 'Sea Horses' are being implemented. Sea Horses will be the main method of water transportation in Ilshenar, as boats are unfortunately non-existent on that facet. This form of water transportation should be very interesting to see in the future. Moongates are also found at each of the eight shrines around Ilshenar, they offer facet and town transportation as well.

    In conclusion, Ultima Online: Third Dawn is an all around fun game to play. It has been an enjoyable experience exploring the new features that Third Dawn has to offer. You have the option to be whoever you want to be, and do whatever you want to do, it is your life, and nothing can prevent you from achieving your goals.

    Fare thee well, and see you in Ilshenar!

    Posted by Nobody at 6:13 PM

    UOHoC Chats with Den Dragon

    The complete log of the Twenty-fourth UO Celebrity chat with Den Dragon, founder of Stratics has been posted at the Ultima Online House of Commons (UOHoC), here. Below is the first question to Den Dragon:

    Sephiroth - Ok Den, when and why did you start the Stratics corporation?
    DenDragon - well, the corporate thing happened at some point along the line... ;) as for the network, it began as a homepage on GeoCities
    DenDragon - probably kinda familiar for a lot of you: bored at work, interested in UO, couldn't find stats for the scimitar
    DenDragon - so I decided to find out myself :)
    Sephiroth - thanks =) That's all from gimpy ole me
    DenDragon - what started as "Den's Den: the UO Statistics Site" grew into the UOSS, and then into Stratics
    DenDragon - cool, thanks for the question

    Posted by Nobody at 6:04 PM

    Building the Ultimate RPG Game

    Wired News Radio recently was able to interview Rick "Stellerex" Hall, Senior Producer for Ultima Online. It's an MP3-based audio interview, and the introduction is below:


    Courtesy Ultima Online
    A conceptual drawing for Ultima Online
    Building the Ultimate RPG Game

    Ultima Online revolutionized the online gaming market by combining action gaming with community aspects from the Internet. UO senior producer Rick Hall discusses his company's philosophy.

    Listen up:
    Today's MP3 file is 20:00 min. Download (3.5 MB) | Stream

    Posted by Nobody at 3:28 PM

    EA: Seeking Tales of Bravery

    The following was recently posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Seeking Tales of Bravery

    Ever heard the saying "More brawn than brains"? What about "Fortune favors the brave"? Well, whichever of these you feel applies to you, we want to hear of your foolhardy stunts. Whether you faced down a dragon armed with only a dagger, or confronted a Lich Lord while waving about a piece of cooked fishsteak, this is your opportunity to tell your tale of supreme bravery (or utter stupidity, whichever you feel applies).

    Send an e-mail to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, May 4th. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include "Bravery" in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to "uo-profiles" become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:54 AM

    EA: Comments from Leilo

    The following was recently posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Leilo

    Greetings!

    Id like to take the time today to talk about the various ways we communicate information from Ultima Online, and why we communicate in the ways we do. There are three major ways we handle communications: Site Announcements, Message Board posts, and Comments from the Team.
      Site Announcements
      Our most official method of communication is through the various announcements we post to the UO site. These range from game updates, to service announcements, to shard announcements, to policy changes. OCR works with the various teams within the company to sort out information for these announcements and come up with as concise as possible an explanation of the information you need to know. While sometimes the announcements are templates (explaining why every time you see a client patch announcement, they always read the same way), most of the time we write up announcements from scratch to address the current issue. The announcements are then approved by producers, managers, and those directly involved to be sure weve covered the appropriate information, and then are published to the website, sent to a list of fansite operators, and if extremely important, published to the login server message. While this method helps us be absolutely certain that the correct information is being posted, it also requires a bit of a time lag - explaining why situations arise from time to time where you may be aware of an issue before weve posted on it.

      Message Board Posts
      From time to time, youll see red names posting on the UO.com message boards with questions, comments, or suggestions. These UO staff members have gone through a training program to help them answer your questions and concerns in the most effective way to help you. Message board posts are generally written on-the-fly, and because of that, the atmosphere of our message boards is relatively casual. As a rule, we try never to make important announcements only on our boards, but because of casual conversation, occasionally items may slip through. If this does happen, well always try to clarify as quickly as possible.

      Comments from the Team
      The Comments from the Team section of the website was designed to provide you with a closer look at the people who contribute to UO from all of the various service areas. We keep the editing to a minimum, and the topics open - if one team member wants to write a bio, another talk about his experiences as a player, a third theorize on game design, or a fourth share a story of her trip to Tibet, that is their decision. (Though wed likely talk her out of the Tibet stories.) Much like an editorial in your local paper, the Comments from the Team are the thoughts and ideas of the people behind-the-scenes, and as such are probably the least official news well ever publish. Does that mean they wont have substance? Of course not. It does mean that much like all of you are a huge, diverse community with different ideas and goals and thoughts, so are the people writing these comments - and in this section, you may not always find us informational, useful, or even interesting but you will always find the real us - or at least the PG-rated versions.
    In closing, I also want to take a moment to welcome Cynthe to the Ultima Online Community team. Many of you know Cynthe from the hours she invested in supporting the UWOO community, and shes rolled up her sleeves and jumped right in to UO. Cynthe will be handling the major content editing and writing duties for this site as well as keeping our website content up-to-date, helping organize new site additions, and much more. Cynthe and Melantus will continue to be the core of our UO Community Relations team, and I think youll find they have some exciting and useful plans for the future of UO Community Relations.

    Susan Leilo Kath
    Manager, Community Services

    Posted by Nobody at 11:46 AM

    April 25, 2001

    EA: Atlantic Backup System

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Atlantic Backup System

    The distributed backup system will be re-enabled on the Atlantic shard after its regularly scheduled maintenance on Wednesday, April 25th CDT. We will continue to monitor the shard closely for any unexpected issues.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:36 PM

    April 24, 2001

    Terdeus Hall Grand Reopening

    The following announcement was recently posted to the Ultima Online Stratics Web site:

    Terdeus Hall Grand Reopening

    This Friday, 4/20/2001, Sauron held a Grand Reopening of Terdeus Hall. A sizable crowd turned out to enjoy the festivities which included a scavenger hunt, relay race, riddle contest, best dressed contest, drinking relay, and random trivia.

    By the end of the night most of the guests had won a prize! Sauron announced that Terdeus Hall will now have gambling events regularly. So you should drop by and try your luck.

    Sauron also said "I would like to also extend a thank you to all the people who donated items to be given away at the event." Indeed it was a fun night for all!

    Terdeus Hall now offers gambling be sure to visit and play "Strike it Rich". The jackpot starts off at 110K, and slowly builds up. The objective is to guess 3 rolls of the dice in order. So you guess three numbers, each 2-12, and if they come up in the order you said them, you win the jackpot. The jackpot grows with each bet, and it only costs 100 gp per try! Terdeus Hall and the Mystic Mead Tavern worked together to create this exciting new game.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:16 PM

    OTS Announces Dungeon Crawl

    The following announcement from Steve Irwin was recently posted to the Ultima Online Stratics Web site:

    OTS Announces Dungeon Crawl

    Event: OTS Dungeon Crawl When: Saturday, April 28,2001 5:30 PST

    I would like to invite one and all to the very first OTS Dungeon Crawl. You do not have to be in the OTS to take part in the event. We will be choosing a random dungeon by a clever little system (Thank you Mage Tower). About thirty minutes before 5:30 I will be gating to Lord British's Castle from banks of all towns. (We are meeting at Castle British) Once we have all arived we will pick a dungeon. Gates will then be opened to the entrance of the dungeon.

    After every one gets there and a round of Nightsite Spells we will go in the dungeon. We will work our way down to the bottom of the dungeon killing every thing in sight. I personaly will help you get your stuff from your fallen body if needed and Im sure every one else will also. After we are done cleaning out the dungeon gates will be provided to The Mystic Mead. At The Mystic Mead there will be a dart contest for a large pot (15,000 gold last week I think) and a few rounds of Bjorn's Brew. After every one has had their limit gates will be provided back to town.

    Steve Irwin
    General of All Bards
    Children of The Seas

    Posted by Nobody at 11:14 PM

    EA: Comments from Evocare

    The following was recently posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Evocare

    Greetings,

    As you likely know from the team comments heading, I go by the name of Evocare and I am a designer for Ultima Online. In my time at Origin, Ive had the pleasure of working on a variety of game systems for both Ultima Online and the game formerly known as Ultima Online 2, and as a result Id like to take some time to bore you with some game system theory. ;]

    One of my primary goals here at Origin is to take a holistic approach the design of game systems. In order to deliver the best possible play experience, its crucial that we have a keen understanding of how each game system relates to other game systems. The idea is to create and maintain a web of essentially symbiotic game system relationships so that the combination of systems becomes dramatically more interesting and compelling than the sum of the value of each individually. Beyond creating an interesting and deep game world, one of the greatest benefits of this approach is the ability to deliver the aforementioned experience with a minimum of complexity and clutter when compared to a game of equal depth that is comprised of largely unrelated game systems.

    Now that youve been given a mouthful of buzzwords, Ill attempt to turn it into some tangible and useful information. Currently, Ultima Online has a foundation of basic game systems that establish the groundwork for your play experience. Although these systems are reasonably interesting on their own, they become considerably more interesting when meaningful relationships between them are developed. You can see this kind of relationship between the guild and housing systems, in that a guildstone must be located within a house. A result of this interaction is that the value of the guild system is compounded by the interesting qualities of the housing system (and vice versa), since players must work with the elements of attempting to establish a guild while balancing those desires with their housing needs. An example of one of the housing systems effects on the guild system hinges on the ability of the players to (among other things) declare houses as public or private buildings, since it creates a meaningful meta-game in which a guild can make use of the public feature in order to have an open gathering environment, or the private feature in order to use the guild house as a sort of retreat from the outside world (all the while balancing the needs of the guild against the challenges of obtaining the best possible house type).

    At this point, you may be wondering what this has to do with the future of Ultima Online, how it is that we can expect to see this type of approach provide benefits to the existing game world, and why it isnt like that already! Without giving away too much detail, wed like to see Ultima Online evolve its current system design into a more cohesive whole, where the distinctions between systems blur as their interactions are built upon and encouraged to grow! Although this has been an elusive goal due in large part to the realities of live game maintenance and changing faces among the development team, I believe that as time goes on, you (the players) will see a gradual and noticeable refinement of the game systems within Ultima Online. Hopefully, this will translate into a more cohesive and fun game.

    Take care!

    Tom Evocare Chilton
    Designer, Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 11:11 PM

    EA: 2D Client Patch 3.0.0g

    The following was recently posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    2D Client Patch 3.0.0g

    We will be releasing a client patch on April 24th at approximately 12:00 pm CDT. This client patch will fix a bug related to switching to 800x600 resolution. This patch is for the 2D client only. The 3D client build number remains 3.0.0f.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.hitchhikers.net/antivirus/antivirus-dis.phtml.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:10 PM

    A New Tavern To Oen

    On April 24th 2001, at 6 pm CST "The Liches Tavern" opens. Gates will be provided from the Skara Brae moongate in Fellucia. Free recall scrolls are given to all that attend. Prizes will be given out too, and free leather armor dying to anyone that brings their own leather armor. Vendors at the tavern sell GM armor and weapons, deadly poisoned weapons and potions of every kind. Free ostards of different colors will be given out, and so will runes to a secret location. Go to the Skara Brae Fellucia bank at a time to be announced at the tavern's opening, and recieve a weapon of vanquishing of your choice, OR for a mage, you can recieve 2k of each regeant.

    Please email mkeating@gtw.net for questions or information. We are hiring staff, for 10k an hour, to serve drinks, perform entertainment and protect the establishment from murderers. Miners are encouraged to come to the opening event regardless of interest, because their is a perfect mine for any type of ore you can imagine, right outside the 2 story tavern.

    Good luck in your travels
    Hope to see you there.

    Posted by Ursula at 1:56 AM

    April 23, 2001

    EA: Client Patch 3.0.0e

    The following was posted to the FYI page at the Ultima Online Web site:

    Client Patch 3.0.0e

    We will be releasing a client patch on April 23rd at approximately 11:00 am CDT. The client patch will include the following:
    • The translation server will no longer pop up a dialog box when it encounters a missing language pair.
    • A crash caused by trying to plot a course on a map between two identical locations.
    • A fix for the "Unknown Packet Oops" dialog crash.
    • Other random crashes.
    This patch is for the 2D client only. The 3D client build number remains 3.0.0f.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer. Undetected viruses may cause conflicts with patching Ultima Online. For information on up-to-date virus detection software, please visit http://www.hitchhikers.net/antivirus/antivirus-dis.phtml.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com .

    Posted by Nobody at 6:58 PM

    April 21, 2001

    UMF Spring Leather Giveaway

    The following announcement from Cloud of Baja was posted to UO Stratics:

    UMF Spring Leather Giveaway

    Event: UMF Spring Leather Giveaway
    Where: Sharkees & The New Trinsic Shop
    When: Sunday, April 22, 2001 1:00pm 3:00pm CST

    Details: Bring in the new Spring fashion season with a colorful set of GM crafted Leather or Studded armor, the United Merchants Federation (UMF) is giving away FREE sets of GM exceptionally crafted COLORED studded and leather armor. Each of our shops will be offering a different color so make sure you visit them all. All we ask is that you bring along the materials needed to make the armor i.e. 150 hides for studded and 100 hides for regular leather 75 hides for female. We will provide the GM Tailors and leather dye tub to make the armor for you. Limit: 2 sets per customer please. Gates will be provided to and from the shops from Britains West Bank.

    In addition to giving away the Spring color leather armor, we will be selling special rune books with each of our vender shops in them as well as a SPECIAL rune. At 3:00cst you need to recall to the location of the special rune. If you pop up in the spot where our President Sharky McGee is, you will win a Ratman statue! Only 100 of these books will be made and they will sell for 1000gp each.

    Our shops are well maintained and frequently updated to provide the best in customer satisfaction. Look for many new and exciting player run events in the future including Treasure Map Competitions, Competitive Dungeon Crawls, and other craftable giveaways. We hope everyone comes by and visits us to pick up their free armor.

    Cloud of Baja
    Community Relations Director
    United Merchants Federation

    Posted by Nobody at 10:08 PM

    Tragedy in Yew

    A small farming family was found butchered in their home late last night in the deep forest near the city of Yew. The family was discovered by a passing traveller who smelled the terrible reek of the carnage. Upon investigating, he found the dismembered remains of the entire family of three. A large pentagram was drawn on the floor of the house in the blood of the victims, and it was later discovered that the heart had been removed from one of the victims, and the head removed from another. The third victim was found dead outside, bludgeoned from behind. His corpse had not been violated. "This is just awful", said a neighbor, who asked not to be identified. "They were very reclusive, we didn't even know their names. What if we're next?"

    The local residents are up in arms about the incident and have sought protection from the nearby town of Fairhaven. "We know of no monsters in the area that could do such a thing. Ogres may bash your head in, but they don't cut out your heart", said Mayor Silkon, who has pledged to get to the bottom of the incident. "We're on the edge of the wild out here. Yew is too far away to guarantee our safety."

    Residents also don't believe this to be the work of normal monsters, as there are generally very few in the area. "We get the occassional ogre or troll here sometimes, but they generally leave us alone," said local farmer Atkis Williams. "'Bout the most they've ever done is eat a few of our sheep."

    This is not the first strange incident to go on in the area. Local hunters have found disturbances in the enviroment and wildlife in the area, and believe there is some unknown force is at work. "Just yesterday I was out huntin' me some cooters, they make a good stew they do, really warms ye up inside, when I saw this poor grizzly just strung out on the ground. It looked like somethin had turned him inside out like, an' there was blood all over. Most of the major organs were missin. I ain't never seen nuthin like that before, an' I been a trapper for 50 years."

    Posted by Nobody at 3:15 AM

    April 20, 2001

    EA: Comments from Stellerex

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Stellerex

    Stellerex? Who the heck is this guy? Oh. Another producer on UO, right?

    I dont expect many of you to know who I am, since Im not much for stepping into the limelight. Most of you probably dont even realize that I was a UO Live team producer last year for a while. And better yet, most of you had no idea Id been a producer on UWO:ORIGIN last year, and had just returned to that project before the big shake-up at Origin a few weeks ago. But now Ive returned to the UO team, this time as senior producer. Still dont have any clue who I am? Thats okay. Like I said, I dont really crave the attention. I just like to do my job and try to help the team make the best games I can.

    But with the aforementioned shake-up in EA World, the inevitable rumors and speculations have started to surface. So I thought it was only prudent to speak out for a few minutes to clarify things a bit.

    Yes, there was a big layoff here at Origin last month. And yes, a couple of projects got cancelled. After having just rejoined the UWO:ORIGIN team, I can tell you it was hard to hear. But as much as people want answers, the why and who and how much questions arent really what's important. What it comes down to is that the decisions were made. And as I said before, I like to do my job and try to make the best games I can. So before I continue, let me state for the record that the vast majority of the UO Dev team remains intact. In fact, quite a number of folks from other projects have rolled onto the team. Weve made a lot of statements since last month's events about putting more focus into UO. So why should anyone believe us? Well, I know actions speak louder than words, but here you go anyway.

    First of all, we decided to make some adjustments to our organization. At this point, the UO Dev team is larger than at any time since the game shipped, so we needed to expand our team management a little. Let me be the first to publicly congratulate our own Kirk Black, a.k.a. Runesabre, on his promotion to producer. Hes done such a great job for us over the past couple of years that it was really inevitable anyway.

    Next, we decided to sit down and take a look at everything. And I do mean everything. Weve got more resources than at any time in the history of the game, and we have a responsibility to get the most we can out of them. We're starting some really big initiatives right now, and this years efforts will help to position UO to get constantly bigger and better for the very long haul.

    Over the course of the next twelve months, were going to be pulling out all the stops to make the game more stable and efficient. Youve already seen a big part of this with the distributed backups that have just been implemented. Additionally, were going to make a concerted effort to try to locate and eliminate problems, improve performance on the 3D client, and continue to improve server stability.

    And now youre probably thinking, Yeah, thats great. Big deal. Well, if thats all we had planned, you might be right. But like I said, with our expanded team size, were going to be doing something completely new for us - we're devoting a segment of the team to focus on nothing but Live Content. Thats one of the efforts that Runesabre will be heading up, and personally I think it looks pretty exciting.

    And just because we have the manpower, were also going to be working on lots of boring-but-critical infrastructure stuff, and a couple of things that are far enough off that we arent quite ready to reveal details about them yet. But suffice it to say, the UO Live Dev team is alive and well, and weve got an ambitious future ahead of us.

    Rick "Stellerex" Hall
    Senior Producer
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 6:02 PM

    3rd Annual UO-Disney Florida Luncheon Update

    The following Player Gathering announcement was posted by AngelStorm to the UOChesapeake Daily News:

    3rd Annual UO-Disney Florida Luncheon Update

    Just a quick update for everyone interested on attending the luncheon in Florida this year.

    The date is finalized for June 23rd. We are currently awaiting confirmation from Walt Disney World on location and costs, but it will be within the park.

    We expect the costs to be $40 or less per person and will be holding this event "picnic" style as in previous years.

    If you are interested in attending please be sure to email AngelStorm. Also keep visiting the site for updates and information on the luncheon.

    This just in! We have verification that there WILL be a representative from OSI in attendance. However, rumor has it that there is a battle royale going on in the office over who gets to come to Florida this year. We will keep you posted on who comes out of the ring the victor!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:58 PM

    Dark Swords Guild Presents a Fair at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds

    The following announcement from Lord Ash was posted to UO Stratics:

    Dark Swords Guild Presents a Fair at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds

    Sunday, April 29th, 2001
    7:00 pm to 11:45 pm CST
    Baja, Skara Brae Fairgrounds (Sextant Coordinates 47o 32'S, 35o 55'W), Trammel

    Hail one and all! The members of Dark Swords wish to invite one and all to a celebration at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds! The night will start with a storytelling contest, followed by animal fights (betting is allowed!), and finishing with a beauty contest open to any woman who wishes to enter (for a small entry fee you get a chance at very nice prizes)! There will be raffles throughout (prizes including holiday bells, sets of GM armor, and much more to be announced at the event). All contests will have prizes, email for full details, or just show up and we'll explain there. If you are interested in entering the beauty contest, emailing beforehand would be a plus!

    Gates to the fairground will be provided from Britain West Bank on the night of the event. I hope you will all join us for this night of fun and games! Please contact Lord Ash at founders@uomail.com with questions or for more information.

    Lord Ash - Guildmaster of Dark Swords

    Posted by Nobody at 5:53 PM

    Announcing the First Meeting of the Councel of Merchants

    The following announcement from Lord Durnik was posted to UO Stratics:

    Announcing the First Meeting of the Councel of Merchants

    Greetings,

    I am proud to host the first meeting of the Councel of Merchants of Baja on Saturday, April 28th starting at 2 PM Central Time. My ICQ is 17484064. We will be meeting in my Keep in Trammel and gates to the Keep will be available apon request from inside the Nujelmn Bank, the Jhelom Bank and the East Bank in Britain. Gates will not be offered once the Councel starts to meet so please make arrangements to come 20 minutes before hand. Every merchant on baja is invited and urged to attend. Everyone has ideas and I would love to hear them in detail.

    The Councel of Merchants will meet to discuss the following topics.
    • What is an acceptable price range for some goods and services.
    • Price for Raw Materials
    • Price for GM Armor and Weapons
    • Price for Assassin Goods
    • Price for Leather Goods
    • Price For GM Potions
    • Establishing business partnerships on Baja.
    • Different ideas on how to run a Mall.
    • Price to charge Merchants
    • When to Kick a Merchant out of your Mall
    • How to handle Empty Vendors
    • Vendor Philosophy
    • How can the Mall give back to the Community
    I would like to hear from a diverse group of individuals on these topics. Once we have heard your viewpoints, I will start to model the malls to reflect the ideas that you so generously donated. All ideas and view points will be gladly accepted. Lets leave the egos out of this meeting and do something great for Baja.

    Lord Durnik, The Humble Smith

    Posted by Nobody at 5:51 PM

    April 19, 2001

    Golden Brew Players Call for Auditions

    The Golden Brew Players are happy to announce Auditions for The Princess Bride. Auditions will be held Apr. 21st at 7:00 pm PST and Apr. 22nd at 1:00 pm PST at the Golden Globe Theatre, in the Town of Golden, Trammel Facet, Baja Shard. All persons auditioning must be willing to commit to attending at least two 2-hour rehearsals each week for Major roles, plus performance times, or at least one 2-hour rehearsal each week for Minor roles, plus performance times. If you are not willing to commit to this amount of time, please do not audition.">


    Please direct all questions to Kita Talith

    Posted by Ursula at 9:25 PM

    EA: Comments from MrTact

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from MrTact

    THE APOLOGETIC PREFACE

    Forgive me for not using Britannia-speak. I hope you'll understand that I don't wish to embarrass us all with my incompetence.

    THE OBLIGATORY INTRODUCTION

    Enter MrTact, also known in an alternate life as Tim Keating. I started here at Origin in August of '99 as a programmer/DBA for UO operations. My responsibilities included such mundane but important tasks as doing development on the UO login server, generating service metrics and maintaining the billing system. Early in 2000, I became the manager of my team, and was chartered to grow the team by several people. Toward the end of last year, I hit my limit for responding to pages about login server meltdowns, and decided to look for something else to do.

    As it happened, QA was looking for an engineer right around that time, it seemed to be a good fit for both the team and myself, and I made the jump.

    THE ACTUAL UPDATE, or WHY YOU SHOULD CARE

    This is an extremely exciting time to be a part of UO. Throughout the lifetime of the game, parts of the community have been very vocal about problems with bugs and stability. Historically, the dev and QA teams have been in a kind of Catch-22 situation: given a finite amount of time, they had to balance adding new features to the game with fixing bugs. Some bugs had to be left in, not because no one WANTED to fix them, but because the necessary resources had to be dedicated to adding and testing promised new features.

    That's not the case anymore.

    The upside to all the chaos of late is that many people and procedures from UO2 are now a part of the UO team. This is a big win for UO. There are more people working on UO now than at any other time since its launch. Additionally, with only one product, our focus as a company is very narrow. We can afford to pay attention to details that previously we would not have had the bandwidth to address.

    From a QA perspective, we've never had the kinds of engineering resources devoted to UO that we do now. Where QA used to just mean "testing" (and black-box testing, at that, for those of you who know anything about software development), we are now fully responsible for improving the quality of UO from stem to stern. We are starting, slowly but surely, to get involved with development earlier in the lifecycle so we can help dev catch bugs sooner.

    Add to that the renewed commitment by the OSI management team to stomping bugs and improving the quality and reliability of our service, and you can see why I'm so enthusiastic to be getting involved with UO at this point in its lifetime. I hope you'll stick around, because we're going to see some really exciting improvements.

    Tim "MrTact" Keating
    QA Engineer, Ultima Online
    Origin Systems

    Posted by Nobody at 6:42 PM

    Richard Garriott Interview at RPGDot

    RPGDot posted an interviw with Richard Garriott, here. Below is the introduction to the interview.

    Richard Garriott Interview

    Being one of the industry's most famous game designer, Richard Garriott is finally free to return into the business after his one year non-compete term. We all know, what games he has brought us in the past but we all want to know about his future, his plans and his feelings about the latest developments in the industry.

    Enjoy our interview with Lord British.
    One particular question & answer stood out, concerning Mr. Garriott and his future with creating computer games.
    Lets talk about your plans: Will you bring us new games with emphasis more on the single player or on the multiplayer aspect? What is your opinion about the future of Online RPGs in general?

    Richard Garriott: Both. We plan to do online games, but which blend the best features of both solo, and online styles. For example: In a solo player game, each person who buys the game is blissfully unaware that everyone else is also the 1 hero that saves the day. Yet they do this alone and lonely. In most multiplayer games, you are far from lonely which is cool, but not everyone can be the one hero. We have designs that accomplish both. You will be able to achieve greatness alone or with friends.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:41 AM

    April 18, 2001

    Seahorses Coming Soon!

    The following was posted by Joshua Rowan to UO Stratics:

    Seahorses Coming Soon!

    It looks like Seahorses (rideable creatures that will allow you to travel over water) are right around the corner from being added into the game! First, a post from Melantus on the official Discussion Board about it:
    Wait until you see someone riding the seahorse, which I saw on Test Center yesterday (Leilo was showing me what they looked like in motion.).

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    And then a bit later to an e-mail discussion group that was talking about it:
    I clarified that post a little in another post. Players cant exactly get these creatures yet because the items/steps needed is still in the process of being worked on (on Test Center). However being on the inside, we were able to skip the steps needed to get a seahorse and simply make one. :) Was interesting to see it. The rest of that design should be going in soon.
    So not yet, but soon! I'm sure many of you are just like me in that you can't wait to see this one!

    Posted by Nobody at 6:14 PM

    The Society of Archers Baja Chapter has day of activities, contests and fun!

    The following was posted to UO Stratics:

    The Society of Archers Baja Chapter has day of activities, contests and fun!

    The Society of Archers (S|A) first ever Archers Faire took place last Saturday. The Faire took place at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds in Trammel and lasted most of the afternoon. The crowds, in particular Archers, came out in large numbers to participate in the activities. It was a fun and exciting day, and attracted many interesting people who sat around and chatted the day away, thanks to Sparky's constant barrage of ale.

    The Lumberjack race was first, with Sularas pulling in an impressive 400 logs and taking home the first place prize of 50,000 gold. The Archery event followed and was by far the most exciting part of the day. After three rounds of target shooting, only 6 contestants remained. The target was set higher, and all had gone but one and had come up short. People began to speak of a "shoot-out" believing the mark had been set too high. Then the final contestant Sniper Wolf, of PAK, hit three straight bullseyes under pressure to win the event! With her great shooting, Sniper Wolf, took home the grand prize of 50,000 gold and a Vanquishing Heavy Crossbow.

    Overall, the Archers Faire was an entertaining and fun day for all. Thanks to all came, everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves. The Society of Archers Baja Chapter is now looking for Archers interested in uniting together and being involved in more activites like the Archers Faire. You can reach us at SocArchers@aol.com, or look for us around Vesper. I hope you all will keep an eye out for more S|A events in the near future. Farewell!

    Posted by Nobody at 6:12 PM

    The Grand Reopening of Terdeus Hall This Friday!

    We were sent the following announcement:

    Grand Reopening of Terdeus Hall This Friday!

    Terdeus Hall - 48o 52'S 33o 40'E - TRAMMEL
    Friday April 20th, 8:00 PM - 11:00 PM PST

    The Grand Reopening of Terdeus Hall: All are welcome to attend the festivities and to partake in the games. At the Grand Reopening, Sauron shall explain his story, and as to why the Grand Reopening is taking place. There will also be a posting of regular hours of business for Terdeus Hall, and recruiting for employees.

    We look forward to seeing you there!

    (Gates will be provided from the West Britain Bank prior to the event, and runes will be dropped throughout various cities. If you have any questions or comments, contact Sauron at: sauron@frws.com)

    Posted by Nobody at 5:58 PM

    April 17, 2001

    New Titles from Ilshenar Confirmed!!!!

    The following alert from Gewurtztraminer, a player, posted the following to the official UO3D Boards (which I learned about thanks to the post on UO Stratics):

    New Titles from Ilshenar Confirmed!!!!

    I spent most of the day yesterday annoying the demons and gargoyles in Ishlenar, killing gargoyles in all of their 51 flavors.

    I pulled up my paperdoll and was suprized to see:
    The Famed Diogi: Foe of the Abyss Instead of:
    The Famed Diogi Grandmaster Mage

    Way way way back during the beta they had hinted that titles could be gained by your actions. The example they gave was a warrior who killed a lot of dragons would come to be known as a Dragon Slayer.
    And then, continued the UO Stratics reporter, this morning Melantus posted this followup:
    This is true and not a rumor. This has something to do with that "mystery" of Ilshenar that I talked about a few weeks ago, but theres much more to it. That's all I'll say about this for now. :)

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    Melantus@uo.com

    Posted by Nobody at 4:27 PM

    April 16, 2001

    UO.com Screenshots & Events Calendar

    The following two announcements were posted by Joshua Rowan to the Ultima Online Yahoo!Groups e-mail list:

    UO.com Screenshots & Events Calendar

    Screenshots Needed: UO.com is looking for creative and original new Pictures of the Week to display on their front page. And who better to get them from than the players who actually inhabit their world and witness amazing things every day. From unique furniture designs to a hilarious encounter with a creature you've never seen before, the most important part is creativity! If you have something you would like to share, then make sure to take a picture of it using your favorite screenshot utility. Make sure to check out their official submission page for rules and e-mail links.

    Events Calendar Events Needed: UO.com is also looking for events that you may be planning for your shard. From weddings to tournaments to quests. If you want to get great exposure for your event, then this is your chance. And make sure to write a detailed and well written description of the event so that players know exactly what you'll be doing and where the event will be happening (be specific). Some events will even be posted on the front page of UO.com, so keep an eye out! To find out about the rules and to submit your event, head on over to the Event Calendar Submission Form.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:18 PM

    The Golden Brew Celebrates Easter

    The following article was posted to UO Stratics:

    The Golden Brew Celebrates Easter

    The Golden Brew was full of color and celebration as adventurers from every corner of Britannia gathered to celebrate Easter. Saturday, a huge crowd gathered outside the Golden Brew to take part in a dungeon run.

    Individuals were put on smaller teams and sent out to a random dungeon. Here is a picture of Team B as they approach the Terathan Keep! My team went to the blood elemental spawn in Shame. We had a great time smashing Blood elementals to bits! With team work there were very few casualties and tons of excitement and treasure.


    Other teams visited the Ogre Lords in Despise and hunted Shadow Wyrms in Destard and other dangerous places. To read more about the dungeon crawl please see The Golden Brew Message Board

    On Sunday, celebrants enjoyed a feast at the Golden Brew and games. Easter bunnies were spotted in the fields outside the tavern.

    Visitors scoured the hills and forest searching for Easter eggs. Others simply relaxed in the tavern, enjoying the company of friends.

    Rimlock Valcite won the Easter Egg hunt. Pie eating was a tie between Rimlock Valcite and Aaron. Vox and Nanaki tied for the costume contest. A picture of party goers dining on roasted pig, succulent game Hens, fresh vegetables, and desserts.

    Congratulations to the contest winners! I hope everyone had as good of a time as I did.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:00 PM

    Results of the Mystic Mead Dart Tournament

    The following message from Trekonn was posted to UO Stratics:

    Results of the Mystic Mead Dart Tournament

    Greetings!

    I am pleased to announce that The Mystic Mead weekend dart tournament was a great success. Friday started out with our drunken ogre stumbling around towns announcing that we underway. Soon entrants from all over the land came to the tavern to try their hand at the dartboard.

    After 3 hours of competition we had a total of 5600gp in the pot. The high for Friday was Nanaki with 95 points, a score that most thought would last throughout Saturday as well. Upon Saturday, there were already contestants lined up eager to attempt topping this great score. Marco Polio, the second contestant on Saturday, had never thrown a dart before. He approached the line and threw 100 points on his first try! The tavern roared with applause. This score would stand all night until the final half-hour of competition.

    The competition now hosted a pot of well over 10,000gp. Connar approached the line, he had been trying and trying all night to beat this great score. With extreme concentration and a steady hand he focused on his target. Bullseye!! The applause echoed throughout the tavern...20 point shot! The crowd now cheering him on...10 point shot...the crowd fell silent for fear he was losing his concentration5 point shot..."OH NO!" A voice from the back bellowed out, murmurs of dissatisfaction traveled throughout the crowd...Connar could sense the pressure and readjusted his stance...Focusing one last time he let the dart fly...20 point shot!

    The crowd went wild! After cheering ecstatically many realized that the high score was within reach, and many piled back in line to get one last chance to beat this great score of 105. People threw consistently for the last 20 minutes of the competition, but Connar's score would stand. I was pleased to present Connar with a check for 15,400 gp! A great pot for a great score indeed!

    On Sunday evening, many returned to the Mystic Mead in anticipation of the weekly drawing for all that had participated. Undertaker, a Prophet of the OMK graciously donated a SOS and special fishing net to the winner of this drawing. I was pleased to hand this great prize over to Marco Polio.

    Congratulations to both Connar and Marco! I hope all that attended enjoyed themselves and hope to see you all at The Mystic Mead next weekend. This weekends drawing for contestants will be a full plate shadow suit and a 5000gp coupon to the OMK Marketplace next door to tavern.

    Thank you all,
    Trekonn
    The Hierophant
    Oracle of the Mystic Knight

    Posted by Nobody at 10:51 PM

    OSI: Comments from Runesabre

    The following message from RuneSabre was posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Runesabre: Big change lies beneath

    You probably wont hear many folk speaking about one of the most significant changes to UO over ale at the Salty Dog Tavern. This recent change is about as flashy and exciting as a young citizens wardrobe as she first steps into the realm of Britannia, but it affects everyone, without exception, in a dramatically positive fashion. In my 3 years working on UO, nearly everything has changed significantly in one fashion or another, except for one system: the backup system.

    Ever log in to play UO and wonder why your mined ingots from the previous early morning mining session are no longer in your bank and you are standing back to the Sweet Dreams Inn just like the night before? Its called a timewarp and it has been an ugly plague that has been ever prevalent since the beginning of UO. Nastier than any undead invasion, timewarps have been a constant source of anguish and frustration. All of that is about to change, and in fact has already changed if you inhabit the AOL Legends or Atlantic shards.

    What causes a timewarp? A timewarp is caused by the period of time it takes to create a backup, a snapshot of the world of Britannia. Imagine taking your camera to a park and taking a picture. You now have a snapshot of the park, but its still in your camera. The time it takes for you to process the film and finally produce a picture would be similar to the backup processing time it takes to process all the data that comprises a UO shard. Once you have that picture of the park processed, imagine going back to the park and comparing the changes between your snapshot and the current state of the park. If, for some reason, the park was destroyed later and you had to rebuild it from the picture, youd lose all of the changes that happened since the picture was taken. Luckily in real life the timewarp phenomenon isnt common, but UO can and does timewarp on a regular basis.

    The most frequent source of timewarps occurs during regularly scheduled maintenance periods in the morning. The length of a timewarp is determined by how long it takes to actually process the snapshot of Britannia into a complete backup. When a UO shard restarts, it has to restart at the last fully formed backup. Up until now, timewarps have typically been as high as 2 hours or more!

    Weve been working hard to attack this timewarp beast and have designed and implemented a new system that drops that backup processing time from 2 hours to 10 minutes! As an added bonus to this new change, our new design allows us to chop the server restart times by half so shards will now be taking as little as 6-12 minutes to restart instead of the usual 20-40 minutes. This time will vary depending on the size of each shards backup.

    Currently, only AOL Legends and Atlantic are running this new optimized backup system. Changes to the backup system, the foundation of all of UO, are taken very seriously and rolled out to production shards with extreme caution. We are carefully monitoring both AOL Legends and Atlantic on a daily basis. Once we are satisfied with the operation of this new backup system, all shards will be activated, experiencing reduced timewarps and restart times.

    Every day UO continues to improve; but as with many of UOs changes, a lot of the bigger changes are not readily apparent to everyone. But just think of the stories you can tell new citizens that venture to Britannia in the upcoming years! After all, I know years ago I had to walk uphill both ways to Minoc to smelt one small pile of ore, losing stamina every other step against the sleet and snow, only to not succeed, timewarp, and do it all again; and that was when plate gorgets required 2000 ingots!

    Runesabre
    Producer
    UO Live Team

    Posted by Nobody at 10:48 PM

    Still No Seahorses in Ilshenar

    The following was recently posted to the Turbulent Waters site:

    In a recent chat with the developers of UO, a player asked about the still-missing seahorses, rumored to be the only means of travel on the water in Ilshenar. Here's the question and answer from the UO House of Commons Chat over at Stratics last Thursday:

    *Braveheart* Question: So, there is art for a lot of creatures not in game yet in the 3rd Dawn client. When can players expect to see even more new creatures in the world of Ileshnar? (i.e., sea horse, some of the others with art pictured on stratics, etc)

    Oaks - You never know when dormant content might become active... =)

    In other words, the seas of Ilshenar, and more importantly the areas only accessable by water, will remain empty and unavailable for now. OSI maintains it official policy of putting anything to do with the seas, ships, and sailing on the backburner.

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:16 AM

    April 15, 2001

    Computer Games Mag - Massively Entertaining

    The following announcement was posted to UO Stratics:

    Computer Games Mag - "Massively Entertaining"

    For anyone that is a fan of MMORPG's (Massively Multiplayer Online RPG's), the May 2001 issue of Computer Games magazine is going to be a must buy. It has a special section this month called "Massively Entertaining - The past, present & future of online role-playing". Tons, and I mean TONS, of information. In total it is 17 pages long and discusses almost every game in the MMORPG market. It also has a great interview with Raph "Designer Dragon/Holocron" Koster (former Lead Designer of Ultima Online and current Creative Director of Star Wars Galaxies) and a special focus on an upcoming game called "A Tale in the Desert".

    The list of games discussed are as follows:
    • Ultima Online

    • Everquest

    • Asheron's Call

    • Legends of Kesmai

    • Neverwinter Nights (original)

    • Meridian 59

    • Dark Sun Online

    • Gemstone III

    • Kingdom of Drakkar

    • 10six

    • Mankind

    • Allegiance

    • A Tale in the Desert

    • Star Peace
    • Neverwinter Nights (upcoming)

    • Anarchy Online

    • Lineage: The Bloodpledge

    • RedMoon

    • Dark Age of Camelot

    • Shadowbane

    • The Sims Online

    • Motor City Online

    • UWO:Origin (ouch!)

    • Jumpgate

    • Neocron

    • Planetside

    • World War II Online

    • Atriarch
    • BigWorld

    • Sovereign

    • Earth and Beyond

    • Star Wars Galaxies

    • EverQuest 2

    • Project Entropia

    • Caeron3000

    • Horizons

    • Galcom Online

    • Dungeons & Dragons Online

    • Middle Earth Online

    • Warhammer Online
    WHEW! Anyway, I highly recommend it. Make sure to head to your local bookstore and get it immediately (front cover has "Aliens Versus Predator 2" on it) and enjoy!

    Posted by Nobody at 2:57 PM

    UO Vendor Tool available at UO Stratics

    The following announcement was posted to UO Stratics:

    Magic WeaponsUO Vendor Tool available at UO Stratics

    Paul Howarth has created a very nice tool for Vendor owners. It is a small utility that can record your stock prices, and send them to the game window, saving much wear and tear on memory and fingers. With built in support for all kinds of weapons and armor, treasure maps and 'other' items this is a tool that any serious merchant will appreciate very much.

    Thank you Paul, for sharing UO Vendor with the community.

    (A link to UO Vendor can also be found at the bottom of the UO Stratics main menu)

    Posted by Nobody at 2:47 PM

    April 14, 2001

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon!

    Tryon of ImaNewbie Does Britannia sent out the following announcement:

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon!

    Hi there :)

    Ever since Britannia split into Trammel and Felucca I have been reading on the boards about how deserted Felucca is, how all the PKs have nothing to do now that everyone is playing in Trammel, etc. and it got me to thinking about what all the PKs are doing now that there are no easy kills left, so I decided to send ImaNewbie over to Felucca to investigate. What he found was amazing, but don't take my word for it, check it out for yourself.

    Added Saturday, April 14th, 2001:
    - Episode #137: Where Have All the PKs Gone?

    ImaNewbie does Britannia
    http://www.imanewbie.com/

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 12:51 AM

    April 13, 2001

    Lum the Mad and the UO Event Designing Team

    There's been some articles and discussions at Lum the Mad's Web site recently. One in particular concerned last night's Ultima Online House of Commons (UOHoC) chat, to whit:

    "REMEMBER WHEN UOHOCS WERE JUST ABOUT IBN SHAUN NAGGING US ABOUT HEALING?"

    Stratics held a UOHoC last night, right after Heather's whither-the-Interest-program piece was posted. So it was a nice, albeit unplanned transition there.

    Needless to say, there were some questions about said Interest program. By the way, for you non-UO lurkers, "Interest" = in-game plot development, almost always "in character" over a long period of time, usually facilitated by "IGMs", or Interest Game Masters. At least, that's the way it was up until now. Now, well, it's different. How? No one knows, but some hints were given last night. Such as:
    [GragDash] I am wondering why the dev team constantly grows, while the IGM team has been locked since oct 1999. What is happening with intrest team, will it expand? are player establishment blessings commign back?

    [Sage] The interest team has been linked to the dev team now, so there is no separation. Player establishment blessings promoted hard feelings and hurt the community more than they helped it. They will not be returning.
    Gee, exclusive benefits to otherwise undistinguised members of the community at the expense of players who have given years of their lives towards building said community? Say it isn't so!
    [po`folks] does OSI feel localization has improved the RPG elements of UO?

    [Sage] If you don't speak English? Immensely.
    And you thought there was no roleplaying on Asian shards. You're just not looking hard enough!

    In any event, new Event Czar Calandryll promised a "Comments" filing today; more when that happens. Or less. Or something. Maybe we'll design an Automated Lum Rant Generator. Can't be that hard, and continuing to use volunteer labor for Lum's may be legally dicey. Plus, you know, people resent it when we create rants specifically for certain people. And stuff.
    The discussion continued with this more recent article, which more-or-less were personal observations on the future of UO Events under Calandryll:
    CALANDRYLL TAKES THE BLUE PILL

    Jon "Calandryll" Hanna, newly dubbed 'Designer in Charge of Ongoing Content' for UO, has posted his thoughts on the future direction of UO's story development, both in a Comments piece and further exposition on the UO message board.

    From his comments:
    I have always believed that fiction is at its best when it is created by the players themselves. The best part of the Trinsic Invasions during the Renaissance publishes wasnt the stuff we did it was the stuff you did. What I do want, however, is to provide context for the changes and additions to the world, to create an interesting backdrop for all of you to tell your tales in, and to throw the occasional curve ball at you, just to keep you on your toes.
    The message board post goes into further detail, describing a theoretical Undead invasion, complete with mongbats. No UO event is complete without mongbats, don't you agree?
    Suddenly, the undead strike! The shrines are under attack by Vampires and another new monster, undead mongbats (ooh, scary!), and other undead and the town criers plead for players to help defend them. Spawners are put in place that allow players to actually defeat the attacks...ie: players affect when the attacks stop based on how actively they fight back.

    A new dungeon is created, Vampire crypts. This is where the Vampires spawn once their attacks are defeated and becomes a new Point of Interest for all players to enjoy.
    So, unlike the Kobayashi Maru Trinsic scenario, players can actually win an event, without the mystical guiding hand of offseen overworked IGMs. The question remains, though, if OSI can actually carry off an involved, engaging plot. I mean, these are the same people who thought Ultima 9 was a triumph of the storytelling craft. Who created a guy cleverly named "FOA Leader" as the hidden hand behind the Cabal Formerly Known as Zog. And whose idea of a hidden motive force of evil was a leather-clad dominatrix with a henchmen named Lord Snidely Whiplash. Yes, most of the player-generated and interest-volunteer-generated content has been far above the standard set by OSI, but only because the standard up until this point has been so laughably low.

    Clearly there's some work to do. As Origin shifts gears in how they move the metagame behind the game forward, whether they succeed or not depends on how the players - that would be you, boss - react to all of this.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:28 PM

    OSI: Comments from Calandryll

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Calandryll

    Scenario Building

    Those of you who read Sages previous comments from April 3rd have already heard about the changes to the Live team, including the new content designer task force, which includes myself, Augur and Gromm. To quickly summarize what our task is, we are responsible for providing context for new content on an ongoing basis. This includes items, monsters, and even dungeons. The difference between past content updates and these content updates will be that the items, monsters, etc. will have a theme and/or a reason behind them that explains why they are there, rather than just appearing in the world.

    Normally, these comments from the team are a chance for us to talk to you about our plans for Ultima Online. Id rather not get into the details of what we plan to implement, as that is best left to be discovered by all of you as we begin to update the new content. Keep in mind, were still in the documentation and planning stages of this, so the updates themselves may not start soon.

    Id like to talk a bit, though, about where my thinking is. I break down what most people refer to as interest into two major sections.

    Scenario: A scenario is a broad, general description of what is going on, sometimes referred to as the plot. A scenario should provide a simple answer to the question, What is going on in the realm? The reason I say simple answer is because any player should be able to get involved in the overall scenario, even if they missed the first parts. The purpose of a scenario is to provide a backdrop for players to tell their own stories and take part in events that have context within the scenario. For example, the scenario for the film The Matrix was: In the future the human race, held in thrall, is being used for their bioelectric power to fuel a race of robots created by an Artificial Intelligence. One of the human prisoners escapes the computer generated illusion of the 20th century, with the aid of rebels, in order to fight the AI and bring the human race back to the top of the food chain. Of course, those of you that saw the movie know it was more complicated than that, but if you wanted to quickly explain what was going on to someone who just walked into the room midway through the movie, that might be enough to help them understand and appreciate the rest of the movie.

    Events: Events are the building blocks of a scenario and are often used to facilitate the progression of the scenario. In the Matrix example above, the individual scenes, such as Trinity fleeing the Agents, or Neo's visit to the Oracle, are representative of smaller events that have meaning within the larger context. An event can include anything from a new item related to (or coming about as a result of) the scenario, to a new monster or opponent, to a change or addition in the spawn, to just about anything outside the normal scope of ones expectations. The event isnt the new item or the new monster necessarily; its the experiences leading up to them and, more importantly, the interactions with other players that these new items/monsters/areas create. Working with other players to find a new item is an event. Finding a strategy to bring down an unfamiliar opponent that uses special attacks and defenses is an event. Discovering why the undead are suddenly attacking the shrines and subsequently defeating them is an event. When all of these events are all tied to the simple scenario, they create a complex story the players story. And that really is my focus.

    I have always believed that fiction is at its best when it is created by the players themselves. The best part of the Trinsic Invasions during the Renaissance publishes wasnt the stuff we did it was the stuff you did. What I do want, however, is to provide context for the changes and additions to the world, to create an interesting backdrop for all of you to tell your tales in, and to throw the occasional curve ball at you, just to keep you on your toes. ;)

    How I achieve that is a far more detailed post than this one and rather than going on and on about what I plan, Ill let the updates speak for themselves.

    Jon "Calandryll" Hanna
    'Designer in Charge of Ongoing Content'
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 6:13 PM

    Gamezilla Reviews UO:3D

    Gamezilla reviewed Ultima Online: Third Dawn (UO:3D). The full review can be read here. Below is the "overview" which introduces the article:

    Ultima Online: Third Dawn
    Electronic Arts Reviewed by: Shawna Walls

    This is the latest in a series of updates to the original Ultima Online. Many changes to the game simply come through downloaded patches, but Third Dawn is an almost entirely new client, with a new set of 3D graphics. Dont expect the kind of 3D experience youve seen in other games however; this feels far more like Diablo 2s graphics. To be compatible with the 2D version thats still out there, this update only puts a 3D skin on characters and monsters, and upgrades some textures. Those familiar with the 2D version wont really see much change in the look and feel of the game. The playfield and angles are exactly the same as before, as is perspective. To see any real effects of the 3D, its necessary to zoom in for more detail (a neat new added feature). Still, its a nice face lift to an otherwise outdated graphic.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:50 PM

    OSI: Seeking First Prize Tales

    The following was posted to the FYI page at the Ultima Online Web site:

    Seeking First Prize Tales

    And they're off, with Bundor in the lead, followed closely by Mitch and Par! But wait, there's another contestant who's coming up fast...

    Do you thrill to the feeling of competition? Do you constantly find yourself telling your friends and family about the time you outran the fastest ranger in Britain? Pulled the most fish from the Vesper Seas? Or mined 4000 ore in one session to win the Great Minoc Mining Contest? Here's your chance to tell the story of your great win, what you won, and how you spent your winnings.

    Send an e-mail to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, April 20th. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include First Prize in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to uo-profiles become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:41 PM

    Interview with Richard Garriott

    An interview with Richard Garriott, creator of the Ultimas, was recently posted at CDMag.com. Read the full interview here. Below is the introduction paragraph to the interview:

    Lord British, we hardly knew ye
    Richard Garriott speaks about his years with Origin and what went wrong

    Although you'd never know it by talking with him, Richard Garriott belongs to the truly "old school" of game design. His continued passion belies the duration of time that he's been in the industry, and his boyish exuberance, while just a bit less frenetic than a few years ago, still abounds.

    Garriott has been around seemingly since the beginning of time, or at least since the Silicon Dark Ages of the 1970s. During the latter part of the decade, he created his first commercial game, Akalabeth (which he has described as having been "packaged in Baggies and sold out of the trunk of my car"). Eventually he and his brother Robert founded Origin Systems-the "We Create Worlds" folks. Shortly thereafter, Garriott introduced the first Ultima game, which enjoyed eight sequels and which spun off Ultima Online, the first graphically sophisticated (in its time) massively multiplayer online RPG and its satellite products. [more]

    Posted by Nobody at 5:38 PM

    OSI: Comments from Jack Benny

    The following was recently posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Jack Benny

    Hi! I'm Drew Adams - the Manager of Online Operations here for Ultima Online. What that means is that I manage the team that administers the servers here.

    It's always strange starting out something like this... where to begin? Well, I'm a gamer and I guess that's really what brought me here. I was one of the first players in Ultima Online (started my first account over 3 years ago) and I'm a huge fan of online gaming. My background is really what got me into online gaming - in college, buddies and I used to get together and play on a LAN - that was back when nothing was out in TCP/IP and it was all IPX/ODI DOS-based gaming. Hands down, network gaming is the king. AI routines have definitely come a long way since then - but when it comes right down to it, humans do some really strange, unexpected and fun things that AI can't hold a candle to. After college, I decided to work for an ISP - I went from Network Engineering to running the Network Capacity Planning for one of the largest ISP's in the country. I had a front seat to watch online gaming go from 2-4 person games set up using KALI to full blown persistent worlds like Ultima Online.

    Coming to work for Origin/EA was really just the next natural step for me. I've always scanned the EA job site (http://jobs.ea.com/), and saw this one open up last year. It's always been a dream to come and work for a company like this. Coming from the "outside" of the gaming industry, I knew that one of the things I could bring to Ultima Online was a really strong feel for what the customer base was looking for from the technical teams here at OSI. One of the things I've tried to foster is communications - I post mostly on the Connectivity board at http://boards.uo.com under the pseudonym "Jack Benny". I know many of you want to know more about how things work inside the company, and I try and answer what questions I can there.

    I'm excited that UO is growing and I'm looking forward to helping lead the team that will make it possible. I'm committed to the game, and I'm committed to making UO better.

    Drew Adams
    Manager, Online Operations
    Origin Systems
    EA.com

    Posted by Nobody at 5:29 PM

    April 11, 2001

    Emperor Azalin Visits Fairhaven Village

    At the invitation of Mayor Silkon, Emperor Azalin visited Fairhaven village, accompanied with his lady Cymidei Fier. After exchanging pleasantries and tales Cymidei challenged Mayor Silkon to produce a champion from the village to duel the Golem.

    After a close match the Golem was defeated by Nethin's Bard,the Fairhaven Village Champion. Emperor Azalin summoned a soldier of the Imperium, Queen of Chaos to duel the bard. The second match was a draw. Swamp Fox challenged Queen of Chaos to a final duel. After a few minutes Queen of Chaos emerged victorious. All enjoyed the event!

    The Shadow Imperium

    Posted by Nobody at 2:28 AM

    April 10, 2001

    OSI: Atlantic Backup and Maintenance

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com site:

    Atlantic Backup and Maintenance

    We will be activating an improved backup system on the Atlantic shard on Wednesday, April 11th following its regularly scheduled maintenance period. The result of months of work by the UO team, this backup system will greatly decrease the time required to complete a shard backup. The system has been actively running on test shards for some time and has reduced backup times considerably on the AOL Legends shard since its activation earlier this week. We estimate that this change will bring shard backup times down to between 5-15 minutes per shard. As a result, the amount of time required for shard maintenance, restarts, and 'time warps' may be narrowed to between 5-15 minutes in most cases.

    Please note: As this backup system decreases the amount of time required for a shard backup, it will also decrease the amount of 'warp time' available prior to a maintenance period. We urge that players keep this in mind when playing before a scheduled maintenance period.

    The Atlantic shard will be brought down for a maintenance period on Thursday, April 12th at its regularly scheduled maintenance time.

    We will be closely monitoring the AOL Legends and Atlantic shards and, barring any unforeseen issues, will continue activating this system on the remaining shards in the near future. We will announce a release schedule for the remaining shards at least 24 hours in advance of their activation.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:40 PM

    April 9, 2001

    OSI: Comments from Vex

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Vex

    Howdy! Im Vex, designer on UO Live. Let me start this off by talking a bit about how I got to be here.

    Back around March of 2000, Origin sent out the call for new designers for the UO Live team. After reading the requirements on the job listing on OSIs web site, I found myself suddenly re-evaluating how I thought about my career and, in many ways, my life in general. At that time, I was already an all-out UO addict. I literally played daily, and some weekends I would get in twelve hours or more in a single day. And if I wasnt playing the game, I was talking about it on message boards.

    So - the job requirements fit me to a T. The first thing I decided was that there was no doubt about whether or not Id send in my rsum. And then a question bowled over that (rather simple) decision: Why in the world hadnt I gone looking for work in the gaming industry before? I am a gamer to the core. Ive played games for as long as I can remember. Pong. An Atari 2600. Pen and paper roleplaying games. Board games. A Commodore Vic-20. An Atari 800XL. A PC clone. Card games. MUDs. Play by mail. You name it, chances are Ive played it. My wife and I had been running a MUD together for about four years.

    My career to date had been satisfactory. I was making enough to live comfortably and my work (mostly Windows based database and software application design and implementation) was interesting. But I still hadnt answered that question. I dont know why it took me six years to realize that being a game designer and programmer was what I really wanted to do professionally. I guess I figured that it was adequate as a hobby. Silly me.

    Origin flew me out to Austin for a grueling round of interviews. I met many UO people who Id only known until then by their handles. And when it was all over and done with and I had landed back home, still in awe of the whole idea of moving to Austin and actually getting paid to design for Ultima Online, they turned me down.

    In retrospect, I see the toughness of the decision they faced at the time. All of those who got the jobs instead of me are amazing people. Carly (aka LadyMOI) and Sage basically built a new design team from the ground up, and I guarantee you they did one hell of a job. Back at home, I talked with Carly on the phone and exchanged a few emails. I was definitely disappointed about losing out, but I also realized that there would certainly be other opportunities. And another opportunity did come several months later. This time, after another round of interviews, I was extended a job offer.

    So, here I am. Its now been just a touch over six months since my first day at Origin. It feels like its been six years. I was used to working hard before, but I wasnt really prepared for the pace kept around here. Ive already lost track of the number of late nights and weekends Ive spent here in the office, helping to put out one fire or another. I dont remember the number of weeks weve been in crunch since I started. But even though this has by far been the most demanding job Ive ever held, it has also without a doubt been the most satisfying one.

    In my time here, I have quickly learned the difference in scale between running a MUD with a few hundred players and working on a big-time online RPG. Writing code for a server cluster instead of a single process involves levels of complexity heretofore unknown to me. Having to balance the needs of thousands upon thousands of diverse players completely eclipses the same task in the context of a small MUD. I am still a neophyte in the commercial gaming biz, but in these six short fast-paced months, I have already been able to prove my abilities while at the same time gaining what feels like a lifetimes worth of knowledge about the relatively new field of massively multiplayer games.

    Carly and Sage made it possible for me. I thank them both for looking for new talent outside the gaming industry. Theyve given me a very rare and precious opportunity. It was a gamble for them and for me, but one that has paid off well. I am honored to work with Sage, who manages to be everything a leader should be while being pulled in every direction at once. This entire team is strong, and we augment each other well. Each of us brings a unique perspective to the table. But even though we all have different interests in Ultima Online and different opinions as to what the game needs, we work together well and get along splendidly. My hat is off to you guys as well.

    This is an interesting time for all of us on the UO team. With the recent inauguration of the Event Design team, UO now has the largest design team in its history. With the former Third Dawn team merging with UO Live, we now also have the largest software engineering team in UOs history. We are in a position where we have unprecedented resources to distribute. I feel like everything that has happened with this game until now has just been a prelude. Were gearing up for prime time now, ladies and gents, so buckle up and hang on to your hats.

    Whats in store for Ultima Online? Well, that is still largely being decided. Heres what I do know. First, WE WILL SHIP VET REWARDS. No promises as to when. I am working on the Vet Rewards system with some of the programming team. I feel good about the progress we are making. Look for it soon on a Test Center near you. Next, we are setting a goal of attacking all known bugs in the game. Until now, there have never been enough resources to throw at this task, and many harmless but annoying bugs have gone unfixed for way too long. In addition, we are looking forward to adding new content to the game. What else do we have in store? I cant give any more details than these. As we complete our restructuring and flesh out our plans for the upcoming year, more and more will become known.

    These are exciting times to be working on Ultima Online. With the release of Third Dawn, these are exciting times to be playing Ultima Online. Now we are poised to take this game to new heights, and I am honored to be part of the team that will accomplish that task.

    Michael Vex Moore
    Designer, UO Live

    Posted by Nobody at 9:15 PM

    Richard Garriott Interview

    GameSpyDaily posted an interview with Richard Garriott today. The full interview can be found here. Below you can read the entire interview:

    Richard Garriott Interview
    Lord British's NDA with EA is now over - we've got the full story on UO2 and the future.

    Richard's Garriott's NDA with Electronic Arts expired as of April 1. GameSpy's Tina "Cassandra" Haumersen was able to track down Lord British and get the first post-NDA interview with the man who created the Ultima universe for Origin Systems. Garriott talks about the demise of UO2, his dealings with EA and what the future holds.

    GameSpy: What lead to your departure from Origin Systems, the company that you co-founded with your brother 20 years ago?

    RG: After 20 years of Ultima Next, I was extremely motivated to do something NOT called Ultima. The success of Ultima Online meant that all spending growth went to grow the online support of UO1 and UO2 which EA felt we must do ASAP. Soon it became clear that Origin would be only an Ultima company. That combined with my lack of shared vision with the EA placed GM, Jack Heistand, meant that it was time for me to move on.

    GS: How much creative control did you have after Origin was purchased by Electronic Arts?

    RG: I was still the creative leader for the Ultima's I produced, but overall company direction and spending was highly influenced by EA corporate directives.

    GS: Thinking back on everything that has happened since then, is there anything you wish you had done differently?

    RG: Regrets? Some. When we joined EA as EA's hopeful savior of their PC strategy, we grew the company very fast. That was a huge mistake. We did not have the management bandwidth to grow intelligently. Soon after we began the slow downhill yearly EA layoff cycle that has never stopped.

    GS: When Ultima 9: Ascension shipped, it was, shall we say, slightly buggy and seemed as though it had been rushed out the door. What happened?

    RG: U9 only survived at all as a project, by shear force of will. Few if any exec's within EA, and even Origin supported it at all. I had a very hard time keeping funding and staff to do what we did. I am proud of the results, yet also aware of the shortcomings.

    GS: What's going to happen to Lord British now that Ultima Online 2 has been cancelled? Is EA going to be able to continue using actors to play His Lordship in UO?

    RG: Upon my exit, I agreed to leave my character in UO1, but no future Ultimas. I guess that won't be a problem now.

    GS: What did you think of the direction Ultima Online 2 was going as far as the complete change to Britannia and the cyberpunking of the world we all loved so much?

    RG: I had mixed feelings. It is not what I would have done, but it was not "my" project, per say. I believed in the team who took control of the game. I was interested to see what they would do with it.

    GS: What did you think of the creature concepts of Todd McFarlane?

    RG: I think Todd's work is great! They fit well with the direction the game was evolving.

    GS: How do you think the long-time Ultima fans (fans of Ultimas 1-9) would have reacted to Ultima Online 2, had it reached completion and opened for business?

    RG: At first, I was very concerned, as the departure was great. However, the team began to develop the proper Ultima story crafting that is essential to an Ultima. Over time, they were getting it down. Ultimately, it would have worked and been accepted I think.

    GS: What are your greatest sources of inspiration?

    RG: Early on it was fantasy work like Tolkien and D&D. Over time I went from a young kid stabbing in the dark, to a student of the craft. I now read more and study the issues more, like: Joseph Campbell's work on mythology, and Amy Jo Kim's work on Online Communities.

    GS: What are your plans for the future? Would you still like to create Project X, which you spoke about a little over a year ago, or have you abandoned that idea for something else?

    RG: Well, until recent OSI news, I was expecting to hang my hat with a California company, and start to rebuild slowly. Well, now it appears that I can hit the ground running with all my old team mates. So, last month, "X" seemed a remote dream, this month, very likely!

    GS: If it were possible, would you continue making Ultima games?

    RG: Sure! Ultima like world games, but not Avatar in Britannia experiences.

    GS: For years, Origin has been known as a spring board into the industry. How do you feel about having been a part of "seeding" the industry with extremely talented people like Harvey Smith, Warren Spector and Chris Roberts?

    RG: Very proud to help them learn and grow and yet also often sad to see them leave the fold.

    GS: You changed the world as we knew it when you created Akalabeth, and then again with the subsequent Ultima games, and set the standard for all other RPGs that followed. I think its safe to say that the Ultima games touched many people, even if they didn't know why. What's it like to have played such a pivotal role in so many people's lives?

    RG: I feel very lucky. There are lots of people just as smart and creative as I am out there. I was at the right place, at the right time, with the right idea. Then I was bold enough to go for it! Fortunately, it worked. By the way, I believe that I have the right idea, right time, right place
    again now. And I'm still just as bold. We will see if fortune smiles again. The odds look good.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:17 PM

    Easter Party At The Golden Brew

    Celebrate Easter at The Golden Brew

    Sunday April 15th
    Starting at 6pm PST


    Dine on our Easter Dinner of succulent Roast Pig, Roasted Game Hens, fresh vegetables and scrumptious desserts.

    Following dinner participate in the Easter Egg Hunt and Best Easter Costume Contest.

    After all that running around looking for eggs, you're sure to be hungry again, so strap on your bibs and get ready for the Pie Eating Contest!

    Hope to see you there!

    ~Ursula

    Posted by Ursula at 11:59 AM

    April 8, 2001

    OSI: AOL Legends Backups and Maintenance

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    AOL Legends Backups and Maintenance

    We will be activating a new backup system on the AOL Legends shard on Monday, April 9th following its regularly scheduled maintenance period. The result of months of work by the UO team, this backup system will greatly decrease the time required to complete a shard backup. The system has been actively running on test shards for some time, and we estimate that after activation, this change will bring shard backup times down to between 5-15 minutes per shard. As a result, the amount of time required for shard maintenance, restarts, and 'time warps' may be narrowed to between 5-15 minutes in most cases.

    Please note: As this backup system decreases the amount of time required for a shard backup, it will also decrease the amount of 'warp time' available prior to a maintenance period. We urge that players keep this in mind when playing before a scheduled maintenance period.

    The AOL Legends shard will be brought down for a maintenance period on Tuesday, April 10th at its regularly scheduled maintenance time.

    We will be closely monitoring the AOL Legends shard once the change is activated and, barring any unforeseen issues, will begin activating this system on the remaining shards in the near future. We will announce a release schedule for the remaining shards at least 24 hours in advance of their activation.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:56 PM

    April 7, 2001

    Cincinnati Player's Gathering Update

    The following announcement from Myron was posted to UOSS:

    ***** Cincinnati Player's Gathering Update ******

    It is confirmed! Melantus, OSI's Online Community Coordinator, will be making an appearance at this year's Cincinnati Player Gathering on Saturday, April 21st. So if you attend this gathering you will not only get to meet and share a great meal with others who share your love for Ultima Online, you can also participate in a question and answer session with none other than Melantus himself.

    Those of you who attended last year's gathering know what a great time we had with Designer Toad and this year's guest will be just as good if not better. So if you haven't gotten your reservation in make sure you do so soon since the registration deadline is getting close.

    For more information or to register for the gathering Visit Our Website. Remember, all registrations and payments for the gathering must be received by Saturday, April 14th to allow processing time including mailing out your tickets. So don't delay - register today! Also, those players whose registrations are postmarked by April 7th will qualify for a special grand prize drawing - so don't delay!!!!!!

    Posted by Nobody at 12:51 AM

    ULTIMA Novel Now Available!!!

    The following was posted to UOSS:

    ULTIMA Novel Now Available!!!

    One of the only ULTIMA novels ever written is finally available, based on the fiction surrounding Ultima, and specifically around the recently-cancelled Ultima Online 2. Austen Andrews, the same author that wrote the Prequel Fiction for UO2, spins a 344 page tale that takes us on a journey into The Technocrat War just after the Cataclysm caused by Lord British.

    To give you an idea of what you can expect from the book, here is the description from the back:

    A WORLD REFORGED

    A sorcerous cataclysm has remade the ancient and magical world of Sosaria, where a misguided plan to bring ultimate order to the land has altered its destiny forever. Now past, present, and future are one...a unity that sets in motion an astonishing age of discovery and conflict for this strange new world.

    Once separated by time and space, the warlike Juka, the calculating Technocrats, the matriarchs of the Meer, and the Virtuous knights of New Britannia are now on a collission course. Fragile alliances threaten to unravel as treachery and deceit pit kingdom against kingdom. Unless bitter enemies can put aside their vengeful differences long enough to uncover the truth, all Sosaria will be ripped asunder.
    Book I of the trilogy can now be found in several locations, including at Amazon.com and at BN.com as well as most retail locations of Barnes & Noble. Word has it that Austen is currently hard at work to complete Book II as well. Great to hear that even though we have lost the UO2 game that the fiction will continue to live on. So make sure to go out and get it now!

    Posted by Nobody at 12:48 AM

    OSI: Comments from Maleki

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Maleki

    Greetings,

    Many of you all probably wonder who Maleki is, so a little introduction may be in order. I came to Origin in January of 00 to work as a Game Master on Ultima Online. Before coming here, I had dealt with the game since its release, mostly as a volunteer. After countless hours spent as both a Counselor and Senior Companion, I realized that I wanted to further my career with Origin. Ultima Online was the first real game I could get into. I played UO for a little under three years, and went through good and bad times (even lost several houses due to exploits myself). Taking a step back, I feel the game has changed a lot since the early stages. The current Development team has done an awesome job with fixing a ton of bugs which plagued the game for a long time.

    I currently am the Development Liaison for Player Relations. So basically what I do is communicate the bugs that affect our service as a whole to the development team, and set up a schedule with the development team to get them fixed. I also work as a Lead GM, overseeing the Game Masters and the Player Relations Admin Department.

    I feel we have a very strong group of Game Masters now in the department. These folks, day in and day out, perform an outstanding level of service. The GM staff answers over 100k calls a month. Hard to imagine such a group could affect such a large percentage of the population, so I would like to give them the recognition they deserve.

    In closing, it has been a pleasure being able to talk with players over the year and see the game from your eyes. I hope this lets you see the game from mine.

    Maleki
    Lead GM/Development Liaison
    Origin Worlds Online

    Posted by Nobody at 12:42 AM

    April 6, 2001

    An open declaration to the mirrored realms of Sosaria

    An open declaration to the mirrored realms of Sosaria

    Tremble before my rage, heathens, for I have won the Dark Tower stone. Once again, the Tower has been re-united in a bloody war to end the heretical influence that has engulfed these lands like a spreading pestilence. The realms must be re-united, and the balance must be restored; blood must be spilt to satisfy the black heavens. Ivy, the blasphemous wench, has lost her feeble mind to grind the will of the Tower into the minds of the mundane, and thus, she must be cleansed of all heretical influences that have betrayed her soul from her path as a destructor. Sacrifice her to us, and she shall feel the painful wrath of the darkness that heralds itself through the Great Pentacle; she shall once again feel the wriggling icy fingers of death through her veins, and be reborn as a mistress of darkness, not pity. Join me in the cause, mortals, and be shown the immortal glamour of destiny. Aid the cause to re-unite the lands, and destroy those who have escaped the damnations of the Great War before you. They resist the balance, and they thrive upon their drunken perpetual false sanctity. Join me at the Dark Tower in Felucca, the true facet, the true Sosaria. Give our world civilization and dark life once again; give Trammel blood and apocalypse

    Join the Alliance of Felucca, or forever be damned in the shadow of death that hovers before you

    Guilds, civilizations of this weary dimension, send me word of your support, or damnations. Let us meet, and plan our strike against those who have betrayed our kind. Let your declarations of war come forth, for us, or against us

    But send me word (shaneblix@mindspring.com)

    (I am encouraging all heads of role-played organizations, good or evil, to e-mail me their thoughts and suggestions. Let us all meet OOC to organize and plan our community so we can create a vast alliance of role-play and make this game fun again.)

    Posted by Thellaren at 6:21 PM

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon!

    Tryon of ImaNewbie Does Britannia sent us the following announcement:

    Hi there :)

    This week ImaNewbie is back to his usual pastime of exploring for new wonders and adventure, this time on Ice Island. Wandering around he stumbles on the corpse of a freshly killed frost troll. Investigating further he finds a wondrous magical weapon left on the corpse. Nuf said... check it out.

    Added Friday, April 6th, 2001:
    - Episode #137: ImaNewbie and the Magic Halberd

    ImaNewbie does Britannia
    http://www.imanewbie.com/

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 5:31 PM

    Forces of Darkness invade Heaven's Forge - Internal war declared within the Dark Tower

    Late last evening, upon the striking of the eighth hour, those associated with the Dark Tower arrived within the glorious, steadfast city of Heavens Forge. A rally of the Dark Tower had been set earlier this week, as had Na-Kruls threats and damnations towards the citys mayor, Darius. He had warned the mayor that upon his uncooperation, his city would burn and that soon, his people would bleed. Na-Krul addressed the people of Heavens Forge, telling them of their future, and his wishes; however, upon their denial of these wishes, Na-Krul had become angered, flustered, and condemned them once and for all

    The fire raged out of control, consuming the Heavens Forge City Hall as guardsmen after guardsmen arrived, helpless to control the magical blaze of destruction. The wood blistered as the hungry, dancing flames eagerly ate away at the life of the structure; column after column of thick, black, noxious smoke rising to choke the midnight sky as those standing before it watched in awe and helplessness. The City Hall, once a place of serene gathering, was transformed into a hell of darkness and daemons. Each dark tower mage summoned forth beast after massive beast, the newly declared citizens of Heavens Forge, to take appreciation of the engulfing fires before them. Even battle erupted as the Chieftain of the Derthed Orc Clan, Sluglug, engaged the paladins attempting to quell the outrage of chaos; exclaiming his new alliance with those of the Dark Tower and rejoicing at the blood spilt in tribute to his god. A night of darkness, blood, and destruction, and a warning of more to come. What is to be done?

    In other related news, Ivy, Mistress of the Dark Tower, was assaulted last eve in the chaos of Heavens Forge. Daemon after daemon struck at her soul at the command of Na-Krul, and his loyal mage, Danica. Na-Krul spoke of her cleansing, and threatened that soon he would once again control the Dark Tower stone. He proclaimed that once this was done, his empire would again be re-built and the entire realm would soon suffer the blight of war. Reports have been made that Na-Krul has indeed won favor of those still inhabiting the Tower, and soon, his prophecy shall come true

    Posted by Thellaren at 5:31 PM

    Mass PvP Event -- SL v. TB (Felucca)

    A upcoming PvP event was just posted to the Official UO Baja Events Calendar:

    Sponsor: Acid Rain of Shadowlords
    Facet: Felucca
    Location: Outside Despise
    Start Date: Apr 7 2001 7:00AM CST
    End Date: Apr 7 2001 8:00AM CST
    Event taking place will be that of a mass faction war. Only TB and SL factions are allowed, and also blue players, non-faction members.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:43 AM

    Golem Patrols Southern Border

    While making it's regular patrols in the Skara Brae area, The Golem was ordered by Azalin to patrol south near Destard. Upon reaching the Destard Outpost cries of help were heard from a prisoner. The Golem reacted swiftly, slaying brigands and creatures that would jeopardize the safety of the citizens of the Imperium.

    After the battle, The Golem walked up to the victim and shattered the chains on his wrists. Emperor Azalin stated, "Let this serve as proof to those who would doubt me that the people of Skara Brae can expect just and benevolent rule from the Shadow Imperium."

    Painting of Golem Available Here

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:52 AM

    April 4, 2001

    Archers Faire (Trammel)

    The following event was posted to the UOSS Baja Forum:

    The Society of Archers Baja Chapter is pleased to announce that it will hold it's first ever Archers Faire on Saturday April 14th. The event will be held at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds in Trammel and will begin at 2:00pm (PST). There will be an Archery event, a Lumberjack event and a Bowyer/Fletcher event, with prizes being awarded in all three. The main purpose of the Archers Faire, however, is to unite Archers with Archery Craftsmen.

    We are still looking for any Lumberjacks or Bowyers that are interested in selling their goods (boards/shafts/bows/etc...) at the Faire. There is no fee, all are welcome to come sell their goods and participate in the Faire for free. We are expecting quite a turnout so it could be a great opportunity for craftsman to get rid of some of their wares, and a terrific opportunity for Archers to find bulk arrows and many bows and crossbows.

    Please e-mail us (SocArchers@aol.com) if you are interested in selling at the Archers Faire. Otherwise, I hope to see many of you there. Farewell.

    Posted by Thellaren at 9:34 PM

    OSI: UO: Third Dawn Upgrade Maps

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    UO: Third Dawn Upgrade Maps

    It has come to our attention that existing customers ordering the Ultima Online: Third Dawn upgrade offer have not been receiving the complete paper map of Ilshenar and the Britannia and Lost Lands as promised, but have received a map with only the Ilshenar lands visible. We would like to apologize for this, and will be shipping the dual-sided map of Britannia, the Lost Lands, and Ilshenar to all customers who have participated in the special upgrade offer.

    The dual-sided map will be shipped to the address entered for the upgrade offer. Additionally, customers who participate in the Third Dawn upgrade offer in the future will receive the dual-sided, retail version map.

    To participate in the Ultima Online: Third Dawn upgrade offer, please visit http://www.uo.com/upgrade.html. The upgrade offer includes an Ultima Online: Third Dawn CD along with a map displaying the new land of Ilshenar and the existing lands of Britannia. As a special addition, this upgrade also includes a collector's edition cloth map of Britannia and the Lost Lands. All of this is bundled into one package priced at $9.95 plus shipping ($4.95 for U.S. and Puerto Rico or $6.95 International).

    Posted by Nobody at 6:22 PM

    Sage Comments on Upcoming Interest Group Changes

    The following was posted by Sage to the Ultima e-mail list at Yahoogroups.com, addressing concerns made by some of the participants of that same group about the upcoming changes in the Interest group (which creates & implements fiction in Ultima Online):

    From: Sage
    Subject: RE: Team Comment

    1. 1. Rather than using the limited tools currently available to them, the Event Designers will now be able to change the game more dramatically by using our scripting language.

    2. We will be providing more "background" story to the way items and monsters are introduced into Britannia. New content will be more of a focus than small events, hopefully culminating in large scale events.

    3. Events won't be just about small quests anymore. We will be concentrating much of our time on working up to a story that more players can follow and benefit from. Even if people aren't interested in the story, they should still benefit from the event if possible.

    I would caution about expecting too much dynamism to the overall world. While that is the holy grail everyone will be searching for, it makes things very difficult in the support side of things. Why is the Red Sword Of Merrigan on Great Lakes, but not on Lake Superior? How come Asuka has snow falling, but not Hokuto? Also, keeping track of how things interact when one thing happens, but not another is very difficult to do on a publish by publish basis. For instance, in Plot 1 Stage 1, the Key of Turning is necessary to enter the Bloodbath Crypts. However, Plot 1 Stage 3 requires the Skull of Mondain found in the Bloodbath crypts. It is very possible, but you could have one shard lagging behind by months, or forever. So, while the example is extremely simple, imagine trying to keep track of 22 or more possibly divergent sets of fiction. If item introduction or monster introduction is tied to these events, do you force at least some way for these items and monsters to be introduced. If so, isn't that a pretty forced mechanism, and deny what you are hoping to see, your actions affecting the outcome of the plot? If not, don't some players complain about being left out of the new item and perhaps monster updates. Still, I believe it is worth pursuing, but I would rather prove we can walk before setting out for a run just yet.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:46 AM

    News on Vet Rewards

    The following was posted by Connor Caple to the Ultima e-mail list at Yahoogroups:

    [NEWS] Vet Rewards

    Sage just posted this to the UO Boards:
    ==============

    Why are vet rewards not in at this time?
    Vet Rewards is the first system in UO to tie items to an account, rather than a character. This was something that was very new for us, and while seemingly simple, was actually a very complex task. UO, while incredibly flexible, was not originally designed to support this kind of addition. It was clear after release that the Vet Rewards system was in a state we did not feel comfortable with keeping active. (i.e. Some people could get more rewards than their accounts merited.) The system had issues and we felt it was best to hold the system back to try to remove the known issues, rather than keeping it active and trying to fix it on the fly.

    Why has it been so long?
    While we could have held off on many aspects of development for Vet Rewards, it was believed that UO:Third Dawn took precedence over Vet Rewards. Third Dawn potentially reached more people, and was better for the ability of the game to maintain a longer life cycle. (In other words, Third Dawn would give us the ability to hold the interest of the players for longer.) While simultaneous evelopment occurs all the time, the danger of working on Vet Rewards and Third Dawn together would have hurt both projects. Therfore, we gave Third Dawn priority.

    Are Vet Rewards going to be implemented?
    The current team is committed to having Vet Rewards come out and be stable. This may still take some time. The Vet Rewards system has been largely put on the back burner until Third Dawn could be published. This does not mean we will be putting Third Dawn fixes or enhancements to the side in order to do Vet Rewards, as we should be able to work on both simultaneously from this point on. Vet Rewards is currently back under development and we should have more information on when they will be back on TC soon.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:40 AM

    April 3, 2001

    OSI: Publish Update - All Shards

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Publish Update - All Shards

    We will be publishing the changes listed at http://update.uo.com/design_328.html to all shards to be active following their next scheduled maintenance period.

    Please note that only the changes listed specifically in the above URL have been published. Other changes listed in Testing For Next Update remain in testing at this time. The changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once they are active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:54 PM

    OSI: Publish Update

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Publish Update

    The publish of the items listed at http://update.uo.com/design_324.html to the Atlantic, Lake Superior, Napa Valley, and Sonoma shards was delayed due to technical difficulties. These shards will have the listed items active following their Wednesday, April 4th scheduled maintenance period.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:51 PM

    OSI: Comments from Sage

    The following was posted to the Team Comments page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Sage

    Last week at the Game Developers Conference, I met some really great people and caught up with old friends in the industry. Almost all aspects of game development were discussed, but one of the hotter topics debated at the conference was ways to integrate meaningful story into our games. Like all good debates, there were two sides:
    1. the story should be pervasive in the original design, and players should be encouraged to involve themselves in that story
    2. the story should be emergent based on behavior of the players, and the design should offer interesting choices so the story derives from player activities.
    I am confident that there is a middle ground, as Lee Sheldon said, and that developers will be able to find that road more and more. Still, I think we should concentrate on the second argument more at this time, as this is the more underdeveloped of the two concepts in the industry, and perhaps the best in dealing with MMOGs. (<-- Fill in your favorite acronym here.)

    As Ive grown to know MMOG community, Ive found endless fascination in the ability of players to create their own stories, sometimes because of what tools we have given them, and sometimes in spite of the tools we have not given to the community. I want to devote time to exploring this, both because I feel it is important, and because I believe we (the dev team and the community) can do more. I think enabling tale-weavers to create better stories derivative of their world involves, at least, the following three items:
    1. An interesting overarching fiction, or a history if you will.
    2. The ability to make a meaningful decision that the player might not be confronted with every day.
    3. A captive audience for the stories that are told.
    The history of the game world is important because it couches the emergent stories in a meaningful context. For instance, a great experience in Pong might be fascinating to you as a gamer, but telling people that the Great Paddle Battle of 1979 involved the final bank shot of the dot with a blistered thumb, is about as exciting as a sack of wet mice. However, telling someone living within the same world, that you met the scoundrel Skeeve the Magician, who had of late run around as the scourge of Trinsic, and defeated him in a heated duel, has meaning. Still, if a player doesnt understand who Skeeve is, the story has less impact on the listener. This is why it is important that as many people as possible know about the story, and why the story shouldnt be overly complex. Most people, I am sorry to say, are not interested in investigating the stories of the world. Whether that be a problem with delivery, a problem with public interest and attention span, or a combination is up to you to decide. So, perhaps a story about an incredible fight with a valorite elemental is more meaningful to most of the audience. Is it any less stupendous of a battle than the one fought with Skeeve, scourge of Trinsic? Probably not. Is there room for both stories? Of course. While one may be more closely tied into game fiction, the other has a far greater chance of reaching more people. Will Wright, of Sims fame, calls this a point of brag, or a point in the game where two people can share stories about what occurred when said event happened to each of them. Stories are much better when they develop into conversations!

    One of the points I clearly remember from college literature is that the main character / protagonist of a novel is usually the one who has undergone change. The amount of change can be small, but change is important. Remember a battle where you tried something different for the first time? Normally, you might send a dragon in to deal with a valorite elemental, but when the valorite elemental goes through your dragon faster than Dean Wormer expelled John Blutarsky, a new choice has to be made, and quickly. That choice makes you change your tactics, and a story emerges. Afterwards, you realized you needed to relate your story so that others might learn about the problems you encountered, or you just wanted to relate the final outcome of the might battle.

    So how can you tell your story, if no one is around to hear it? Unless trees in the woods have imparted secret information to you about an age-old conundrum, you cant. One of Jonathan Barrons rules on MMRPGs is: Glory is the reason why people play online; shame is what keeps them from playing online. Neither is possible without other people being present. Glory is all about story. Being able to relate your stories to others who understand their context is important, because it is the social nature of people to relate events. I think UO provides this opportunity in a very unique way, and therefore is one of the best storytelling platforms in the entertainment medium. Still, I think one of the weaknesses in UO is that much of our past contributions to story have been limited to reaching a small group of people who know about events, while leaving many of our other players in the dark. It is a matter of logistics; when you have finite time, and finite resources, you can only reach a small number of people if you must have manpower involved in each of the events. Exceptions to this pattern are events such as the invasion of Trinsic during Renaissance, but even that required a massive amount of effort and manpower. I would like to get back to the kind of event where everyone can benefit, but I would also like to have more ongoing content with items such as glacial staves, gargoyles pickaxes, etc. New items, monsters, etc. introduced in context has a better chance to reach the majority of our players. The impact of the new slayer weapons appearing in the world reached a vast majority of our players, and gave them something new to do. As we put new additions in a better context format with more story, the interest in the game grows. This is an area in which I believe we can show quick improvement over the course of the next few months.

    In order to do so, we will be making some changes to our in-house events team. Our current event staff will be trained in the scripting language and given the power to see that new items and creatures going into the game have meaning and are part of a larger plan, rather than being separate and unrelated to the overall story. Jonathan Calandryll Hanna will be heading up the event team, with Tom Augur Ivey and Dave Gromm Saleh rounding out the team. We understand this will be a very different way of bringing story into UO than what we do currently, but we think the majority of our players will benefit. What we will be able to do over time will grow as we learn to stretch UOs limits.

    Finally, I would like to end this Comments from the Team with a fond farewell to many of my friends who have recently departed OSI. Losing the ability to see your friends day to day is a very hard thing on anyone, and I hope they know they will be missed.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:58 PM

    OSI: Upgrading to UO:Third Dawn

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Upgrading to UO:Third Dawn

    Reminder: To enjoy the features and changes present in Ultima Online: Third Dawn, you must have a UO: Third Dawn CD. Existing customers can take advantage of our special offer and receive a Third Dawn CD and the map of Ilshenar, Britannia and the Lost Lands for $9.95 at our upgrade site located at http://www.uo.com/upgrade.html. This special upgrade offer also includes a collectors edition cloth map of Britannia and the Lost Lands. Ultima Online: Third Dawn can also be purchased at your local software store. Players new to Ultima Online will be able to access the Third Dawn client simply by creating their account using the Third Dawn CD. Existing customers, whether using the upgrade or the full retail copy, need only install UO:Third Dawn and download any latest patches before playing. There is no need for existing account holders to update their registration.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:55 PM

    April 2, 2001

    Carly LadyMOI Staehlin Leaves OSI, Rick Hall to Take Over as UO Producer

    Lum the Mad, at his site of the same name, posted the following:

    CARLY "LADYMOI" STAEHLIN LEAVES OSI, RICK HALL TO TAKE OVER AS UO PRODUCER

    Rumors have been flying about all morning about this, and we just got word from Susan "Leilo" Kath, OSI's online community head, that Rick "Stellerex" Hall will be taking over for Carly "LadyMOI" Staehlin as Ultima Online's Producer. Stellerex was previously the producer for the recently released "Third Dawn" expansion.

    Leilo also said that Ms. Staehlin would possibly be taking a position elsewhere in EA, but didn't know more at this point. As always, if we find out more we'll let you know.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:55 PM

    Interest Group Under Review

    Joshua Rowan recently posted the following on the ultima@yahoogroups.com e-mail list:

    Interest Group Under Review

    Hmmmmm, another interesting tidbit that Cynthe mentions about the Interest Group on the official UO.com Roleplaying Board:
    ===========
    The way interest has been done in UO is currently under review, and you may
    see some changes soon. I can't go into details, but I do know that it's our
    intention to see that all shards are more equally represented when it comes
    to interest.

    Cynthe
    Community Coordinator
    Origin Systems
    ===========
    It'll be interesting to see what they have in store for us. Hopefully this is a Good Thing(tm) and not a bad thing...

    Josh
    The "Interest Group" of Ultima Online includes IGMs (Interes Game Masters), Seers, Elders, and other Quest- and event-developing persons.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:49 PM

    OSI: Account Bannings in Ultima Online

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Account Bannings in Ultima Online

    After extended logging, we have completed a search for accounts using illegal third party programs to "speed hack". The programs are used to exploit in Ultima Online and gain unfair advantage over honest players. The accounts logged exploiting in this manner have been suspended and e-mails have been sent to the account holders. Additionally, the ability to use this exploit has been addressed. The total number of players affected by this action is less than 300.

    We are committed to removing players that choose to exploit Ultima Online and continue to work to provide a level playing experience for all UO players.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:44 PM

    Last Man *cough* Woman Standing results!

    The following from Washburn was posted to the Golden Brew message board, here:

    Last Man *cough* Woman Standing results!

    Tonight was a vicious and rousing contest at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds in Trammel. Elder Takara and Seer Hawk did a terrific job hosting tonight's event which appeared to go seamlessly.

    All in all, the crowd was pumped as the first round opened up and the first monsters were loosed. Sadly, the People's Champion, yours truly *wink*, fell in an upset to a poison elemental. After six rounds of competition, six victors aspired to the final match culminating in what could have been the fiercest battle of the night. Yet, in the end, there could only be one man *cough* er... woman left standing.

    Let us congratulate Eliar in her great victory. She, who actually created the event as a seer, braved the scourge of daemons and elementals and outwitted her opponents in such a way that she alone could only be declared the victor. Congratulations, Eliar!

    2nd place was awarded to Jack o the Wisp. 3rd Place to Lord Veldoran and 4th Place to Stel.

    Congratulations, all, and I hope to defeat you in the Best of the Best next weekend!
    --
    Washburn, Captain of the Guard, Golden Town Guard.

    Eliar!  Last Woman Standing!
    Eliar! Last Woman Standing!

    Posted by Nobody at 8:23 AM

    April 1, 2001

    New Tavern Now Open (Trammel)

    The following announcement was found posted to several boards:

    Hail Sosarians,

    I wish to introduce Baja's newest Tavern, the "Sea Breeze Tavern", located at 92,38' N - 39,56' W just north-east of the lovely wooded city of Yew along the coast. The Tavern is nestled against a lovely shore line and wooded area. Inside we have FaiFax our Bartender to serve you and look after your entertainment needs. Also, for your shopping pleasure we have Maria and Carlotta selling the finest in Armor/weapons/Bows/wood worked items all signed by the craftsmen and garanteed exceptional quality. Please stop by to say hello and have a drink, or sit in our lovely lounge area or balcony and play a game of chess or backgammon. Hope to see you all in the near future. *smiles*

    -Shannon (Proprietor)- Trammel

    Posted by Thellaren at 7:45 PM

    New Spotlight Added for The Society of Gypsies at UOSS

    The following item was posted to UOSS:

    New Spotlight Added for The Society of Gypsies

    Just added! A new spotlight on, The Society of Gypsies If you love role playing, mischief, adventure and romance ye will find all this and more in this delightful guild.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:47 AM

    OSI: UO: Third Dawn Upgrade Site Open

    The following was recently posted to What's New on the UO.com website (now more relevant than ever, with UO:3D now for sale stores):

    UO: Third Dawn Upgrade Site Open

    The Ultima Online: Third Dawn upgrade offer site is now open at
    http://www.uo.com/upgrade.html . This promotion will last for 60 days, during which current UO customers with active accounts will be able to order this special upgrade for a price of $9.95 plus shipping and handling. The promotional upgrade version of Ultima Online: Third Dawn includes the final gold-mastered version of Third Dawn, the new retail version map of Britannia, the Lost Lands, and Ilshenar, and while supplies last - as a special bonus - we'll include a collector's edition cloth map of Britannia and the Lost Lands. This upgrade CD does not include a registration code and therefore cannot be used to create a new account nor qualify for new account free game time.

    Stop by and order your copy today!

    Posted by Nobody at 12:13 AM

    March 31, 2001

    Dark Tower to Rally at Heaven's Forge Thursday at 8 PM Pacific.

    Death; the destroyer of humanity and herald of time, known to those who live as the merciless reaper, the great destructor, and the unending pain and pestilence that writhes upon the face of civilization. Death is the same repulsive blemish that feeds upon the sweet embrace of natures arms and the mocking fate that no mortal dares to travel. Death, however, as reveled and feared as it is, holds the paradox of life. There is life even in death, and there is light even in darkness

    The Dark Tower, the ominous cloud of impending death, the thick, noxious cloud of plague that looms over the war-torn tidings of Sosaria. A place of enlightenment and knowledge. A place where the darker depths of thought and perception dare reach the comprehension of the illuminating deceit cowering within the heretical heathenry that has embedded itself within the lustful blood of the murderous and virtuous alike. A fire of apocalyptic rage, striving for the total eradication of all that oppose its blackened hand of corruption. A Tower founded in the name of both the creator and the destroyer; The Guardian.

    Enter these halls, and forfeit your soul to the truth that lies entombed within the darkness of light. There is no light without darkness. There is no life without death. No entity can better perceive the light than when standing in the dark, for light is most visible in dark places. Enter now, murderous and virtuous alike and strive to learn the tidings of truth. Regain your heritage as Sosarians and smite the slithering serpents of seduction that have embraced the child-like innocence of this realm. Join the Dark Tower, and disperse this parading stench of pompous propriety. Drink the boiling blood of benevolence, and thrive upon the sacrifice of lost souls

    Spread the word of this gift, and your every dream shall be born upon reality. This I swear upon my flesh, and beseech upon your soul

    Join us at Heavens Forge this Wednesday, April 4th, at 8 PM pacific

    Or send thine wishes to shaneblix@mindspring.com.

    Na-Krul of the Dark Tower

    Posted by Brenstar at 3:02 PM

    Nightmares of Reality

    Nightmares of Reality

    Nightmares, the fleeting poisons of the mind; the subdued emotions peeking and howling within the deep, hollow halls of the reminiscent caverns of the psyche. A disturbance, a remembrance, and a haunting of experiences and fears; a warning and prophecy to the mystic and a revelation to the insane

    Arwyn Blackheart, Gatekeeper of the Dark Tower, acclaimed guardian of the Great Pentacle, turned sharply as he choked with pain. An acute damnation, damp and sweaty, twisting and turning in a haze of sickness that always resulted in the stomach squeezing revulsion of vomit spewn across the cold cobblestone floor. He could smell the sickening aroma, the stench of decay and putrid gore invading his nostrils. He could hear the lunging whispers of the Tower walls, the profound gagged cries of a soul entombed within the very bloodstained stones that erected the great monument of death. He could feel the Great Pentacle pulsating with life and he could feel his soul, his marked remembrance of his vows to his master, tugging at his body. Something was coming, it was in his dreams, and that something needed a host

    That something was a Na-Krul.

    Beldock knows much of Arwyns dreams

    Arwyn is dead and Na-Krul has returned.

    Posted by Nobody at 2:46 PM

    March 30, 2001

    OSI: Seeking Tales of Ilshenar

    It's time for a new spotlight! This just posted to the UO.com site:

    Seeking Tales of Ilshenar

    There's nothing quite like the feel of standing on an open vista, seeing a vast and uncharted land, free from the congestion of civilization. Now that UO:Third Dawn has been released, many residents of Britannia have headed out to explore the new land of Ilshenar and feel the thrill of discovery once again.

    Have you explored beyond the boundaries of civilization? Do you have tales to tell about your adventures or experiences there? We want to hear about your travels in the new lands of Ilshenar, and give you the opportunity to impart valuable advice to those who would travel there in the future.

    Send an e-mail to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, April 6, and tell us a story of your experiences in Ilshenar. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words, and include "Ilshenar" in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to "uo-profiles" become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:14 PM

    Ilshenar Events: Land Crawl - This Saturday at 7:00pm (PST)

    The following was found on the Baja Mage Tower pages:

    This Saturday (March 31, 7:00pm PST), The Mage tower is hosting a Land Crawl.

    What's A Land Crawl ?? - Well a land crawl is like a dungeon crawl but we explore new lands instead of dungeons. Ilshenar will be our new land to scout, to record, to explore, and like with every good Mage Tower event, to die.

    In order to take part in this Land Crawl, you must have studied the latest world modifying instructions from the gods. (uo3d)

    Nekkar
    Baja Mage Tower

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:27 AM

    March 29, 2001

    OSI: Publish Update, West Coast

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Publish Update, West Coast

    We will be publishing the changes listed at http://update.uo.com/design_324.html to all West Coast US shards to be active following their Friday, March 30th scheduled maintenance period. This will affect the Sonoma, Pacific, Baja, and Napa Valley shards. Please note that only the changes listed specifically in the above URL have been published. Other changes listed in Testing For Next Update remain in testing at this time.

    The changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:45 PM

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Britannia Enquirer!

    The following announcement from Tryon at ImaNewbie Does Britannia was posted at UOSS:

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Britannia Enquirer!

    This week I've loaded up the rant cannon and it's aimed squarely at all the new changes affecting this world we know as Britannia, as it relates to UO (2D), UO Third Dawn and the recently cancelled UO2. The new edition of the Britannia Enquirer should leave no doubt in your mind as to how I feel about where I stand on the changes. It seems lately about the only thing certain about UO is that it will continue to cost $9.95 (US) a month, and the issues the perpetual beta testers (you and me) really consider important will continue to take second place to whatever cockamamie scheme EA has dreamed up this week.

    Added Wednesday, March 28th, 2001:
    - The Britannia Enquirer - Vol 2. No 2 - What's wrong with this picture

    ImaNewbie does Britannia
    www.imanewbie.com

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 7:51 PM

    March 27, 2001

    OSI: Networking Issues

    The following was posted to the Shard Issue page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Networking Issues

    We are currently experiencing issues with our network that may cause connectivity issues with the West Coast shards, Asian shards and Login servers . We assure you that we are working diligently to correct this and we will update you once we have more information

    Posted by Nobody at 4:45 PM

    March 26, 2001

    OSI: Upgrading to Ultima Online: Third Dawn

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Upgrading to Ultima Online: Third Dawn

    Due to unexpected issues, the Ultima Online: Third Dawn upgrade site will be launching at approximately 12:00 pm (Noon) CST, March 27. We will make public the upgrade site address shortly before the site goes live. This promotion will last for 60 days, during which current UO customers with active accounts will be able to order this special upgrade for a price of $9.95 plus shipping and handling. The promotional upgrade version of Ultima Online: Third Dawn includes the final gold-mastered version of Third Dawn, the new retail version map of Britannia, the Lost Lands, and Ilshenar, and while supplies last - as a special bonus - we'll include a collector's edition cloth map of Britannia and the Lost Lands. This upgrade CD does not include a registration code and therefore cannot be used to create a new account nor qualify for new account free game time. Alpha and beta testers who do not wish to participate in the upgrade offer will be given the opportunity to order the Ilshenar and cloth maps for $5.95, with shipping and handling paid by Origin Systems.

    We look forward to seeing everyone in this newest incarnation of Britannia.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:04 PM

    Seer Eliar Quits

    Eliar, a Seer of Baja, unexpectedly quit the Interest program sometime before 9pm PST last night.

    Ursula, proprietress of the Golden Brew on Trammel, contacted several handfuls of known friends and "fans" of Seer Eliar about one hour earlier, asking them to come to the Golden Brew but not telling these people why she summoned them. At about 9pm, Ursula's announcement began simply: "Eliar resigned."

    Confusion followed, as did many questions amid a small amount of speculation. Some answers came slowly, but soon enough ex-Seer Eliar, herself, showed up at the famous pub. Eliar stated she had no plans to quit, implying that it was a quick and recent decision. She expressed concerns about the state of the Interest program, citing that she felt it was in downward decline and "has been for the better part of the last year." Still, she was in good spirits.

    "I was brought in with the second batch of Seers," she told the crowd. "I was the first seer brought in from open applications." During part of the conversation she praised ex-Seer Thayer for the work he did while enrobed. She then mentioned that early in her career as a Baja Seer she worked alone, and, even though she is leaving, there will be other Interest Program volunteers who still remain for Baja.

    When asked why she chose Baja as her Shard, she responded, "I chose it because I was a PK and very much a fan of the WTFMen." Later she admitted one of her first events was ironically ruined by a "cheap clone" of Ronald McDonald (of WTFMan and formely of Baja). "Before I became a Seer, confessed Eliar, "I had no RP experience."

    "As for the Faire Grounds," glowed Eliar, "You can't get me to stop advertising it even after I'm gone." Eliar mentioned that she had a large tournament concept for the Faire Grounds, and hinted that she may like to pursue it should the remaining Interest Volunteers on Baja choose not to continue with it. Those in the Golden Brew offered their help, beginning with outfitting the ex-Seer in approriately green clothing, including a mage's hat and staff to whack people with. Toward the end of the intial conversation there were those who felt she implied she might continue on Baja as a player at some point.


    The Golden Brew enjoys the company of Ex-Seer Eliar"


    Note: A Seer is a volunteer, sort of like Counselors, except they make Quests and other such entertaining events for players. Seer Eliar is known for her part in the creation of the Skara Brae Faire Grounds and for playing the role of Michael Blake, among numerous other events and characters.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:23 AM

    March 25, 2001

    The Tale of Orion's Bar

    The following is a pictoral story that was pointed out by Kellogg over at the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    The Tale of Orion's Bar

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:10 AM

    March 24, 2001

    Orcs Attempt Invasion of Britian

    The following account by Cymidei Fier was posted to UOSS:

    Orcs Attempt Invasion of Britian

    At 1:00 PM PST, the Town Cryers at the West Britian Bank [on Trammel. -Ed.] sounded a call to arms "The Orcs are planning a massive attack against Britian. Orcish forces gathering near the Cove Orc Fort."

    Within moments, dozens of valiant adventurers arrived at the orc fort to put down the uprising. Hundreds of orcs, orcish mages, ettins, and orcish lords rallied outside the fort.

    This is a sketch I made at the battle.


    The fighting was fierce and many warriors lost their lives. Finally, the orcs were subdued and the orcish threat against Britian was put to a bloody end.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:26 PM

    OSI: Client Patch 3.0.0c

    The following announcement was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Client Patch 3.0.0c

    We are currently releasing client patch 3.0.0c. This patch addresses and updates more localization as well as some language files.

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:23 PM

    Golden Town Guard Formed

    Washburn has been posting this message in various places, such as on the Heaven's Forge message board, here:

    Hear ye, hear ye...

    Hail all citizens of Heaven's Forge!


    Some of ye may know me and others may not. For those who don't, allow me to introduce myself. I am Washburn, born of Trinsic, Knight of Justice, retired soldier of Lord British's army, and citizen of the Town of Golden.

    For over a year now, it has been that those who wished to dwell in Trammel have lived in peace and tranquility. Yet recently, it has come to the attention of the Town of Golden that several of our neighbors and allies have become plagued with a nemesis that could only have followed us from Minax's wasted land of Felucca: The orcs and the drow.

    Let it now be known that the Golden township has recognized this threat and we have organized a town guard as an effort to stave off this... our... new enemy. Also, let it be known that the Golden Town Guard will not be limiting its services to Golden alone. Our allies in Trammel and our friends in Felucca may call upon us in times of need. Together shall we all forge a unity of light that no wave of darkness shall ever extinguish.

    To contact the guard, you may send a pigeon to Ursula or to myself at pigeon hole #1921072 or leave a message for either of us at the Golden Brew Message Board.

    Thank you one and all. May the light of our virtue brighten our future.
    --
    Washburn, Captain of the Golden Town Guard.

    Golden Brew Message Board

    Posted by Nobody at 5:18 PM

    Free HTML/Graphical Tables for Guild Sites

    The following announcement from Brimstone at MMORPGSTUFF.com was posted by UOSS:

    Free HTML/Graphical Tables for Guild Sites

    MMORPGSTUFF.com is offering free HTML and graphics for people to use however they wish. The first (of many) offering is a set of tables, small and medium sized, they have a Grey Stone texture. The tables are coded properly to allow them to expand as large as the user wants. The tables are great for headlines, news articles, member rosters, screenshot of the day, trivia and a hundred other uses. Also, the graphics that make up the tables are transparent gifs so they blend into ANY background the guild may have on their site.

    Preview of "Greystone Table (Small)":


    Preview of "Greystone Table (Big)":


    In the next few weeks, expect to see new themed tables, as well as entire guild site templates being given away. This includes graphics and HTML.

    Sincerely,
    Brimstone,
    MMORPGSTUFF.com

    Posted by Nobody at 9:12 AM

    UO Chronicles - Stories of UO Families

    The following announcement was posted by UOSS:

    UO Chronicles - Stories of UO Families

    Announcing the Grand Opening of a new UO related web site. Do you have an interesting story or background behind your characters in Ultime Online? Ever wanted to share those stories with other people out there? UO Chronicles (uochronicles.50megs.com) is a place where you can read about the history, lives, and adventures of some of Ultima Online's families. Here, you can hear about the heroic deeds and fatal flaws of some of the interesting characters that inhabit the world of Ultima Online. Currently, two families call this page home. The Family Arania and The Family Lisanden (Atlantic Shard) Space is available if anyone else would like to post their characters lives here. Interested parties should send email to riael@hotmail.com and ask about putting their adventures on this wonderful new opportunity to make your characters come alive through their backgrounds and stories.

    Go to uochronicles.50megs.com and see what it's all about. Email riael@hotmail.com if you want to take part in this wonderful new medium for sharing your characters.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:57 AM

    The Fishing Council of Britannia Moves To A New Site

    The following announcement from Sarah was posted by UOSS:

    The Fishing Council of Britannia Moves To A New Site

    We've Moved!

    The FCB has finially gone out and bought our own domain, so this will be the last move ever!

    We want to be assured that fisher's will always have the same execllent service we have always provided, so we felt this was a step we needed to take.

    We are now located at www.thefcb.com and you can get the new Message Board Here.

    We hope to see you shortly at our new home! :)
    Sarah, FCB Admin

    Posted by Nobody at 8:53 AM

    UOHoC posts log of 22nd UO Celebrity chat with Tugsoft

    The Ultima Online House of Commons (UOHoC) has announced that the complete log of the Twenty-second UO Celebrity chat with Tug of Tugsoft has been posted, and is available here. The chat centers around UOAssist's features and suggestions for improving this "third-party" tool.

    Some information on UOAssist: Tug/Tugsoft is the creator of the extremely useful multi-purpose UOAssist tool, one of the few applications for use with Ultima Online that enjoys UOPro status and the approval of OSI. UOAssist can be found at www.tugsoft.com. You can download & use it for a short time for evaluation purposes, and have the option of paying a registration fee of $14.95 U.S. (plus 6.25% sales tax for Utah residents) to remove the time limit. UOAssist is updated frequently,which is an important feature considering the frequent changes made to UO, itself.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:49 AM

    Reaching Within

    "Damn, damn, DAMN!"

    Mirabel cursed and banged her hand on the table as she failed, again, to calm her mind enough to begin the working.

    "Calm down, lass," Caelyn admonished her. We've worked out the basic structure, now you just need to focus. I've seen you in meditation this deep before when you needed to.. But you're letting emotion and urgency cloud your thoughts. Just relax."

    Mirabel frowned and took a deep breath. Her mind turned inward, and she listened to the beating of her heart.. its deep rhythm made music with the wind through the trees. She felt the warmth of the fire, it touched her skin, and as she felt the heat travel inward, she attached a thought to it, and followed along.

    She let her consciousness slip along this path, following the tendril of heat as it moved more inward until it reached her core. Still breathing deeply, listening to her heart, she was completely at peace.

    She did not let herself rejoice, she merely existed in this moment for what seemed forever.. and a split second later, her consciousness began to expand, to search her entire body, studying in more minute detail than she had ever allowed. Scars of old wounds, mental and physical, were laid bare to her all-seeing mind.. Damage done and healed, mostly. She was not the patient.

    She nodded once and Caelyn reached out to touch her hands. It was almost jarring enough to break her trance, but she did not falter.. she sent a probing thought along the path and began to search Caelyn.

    Old injuries, many.. A great peace and security of mind here.. ah, but what is this? He hadn't mentioned any heart trouble. Mirabel prodded at it tenatively and it bared its teeth at her, wasn't going to relinquish its hold on her master without a fight..

    Target acquired, she thought, and opened her full mind to the task at hand.

    Immediately she was falling into Caeyln, submerging herself in the troubled muscles that screamed at her invasion.. she distantly felt him squeeze her hands sharply, heard an intake of breath, as if it pained him.. she must be careful.. but she was being overwhelmed with sensation, noise, the crackle of something like electricity as she moved within his heart.. she envisioned all she knew of the structure of this organ, her many hours of study allowing her to see it as it should be, clearly.. and drawing on what she saw in front of her, the two compared.. Plucked part out, fashioned new, replaced... over and over, a thousand resurrections it seemed, and so little repaired.. but repaired! it was repaired. That small bit, repaired.. and she could not maintain this, she could not...

    Caelyn started a little as Mirabel fell over, he looked at the clock and realized they had been at this for several hours.. the child was exhausted.. HE was exhausted, but.. he felt.. better. Somehow better. He pulled a blanket over Mir and leaned back in his chair, thinking.. It must have worked, on some level, no? He searched his own body for confirmation.. and yes, she had found it, the trouble he had not mentioned, it came with age in his family and he -was- getting old, he smirked. She had found it.. and she had relieved it. Not cured. It would return. But she had held it off.

    At what cost? She slept like the dead.

    Was this Ivy worth such?

    Posted by Nobody at 7:51 AM

    March 23, 2001

    Upcoming Weddings (Trammel)

    The following wedding information was seen posted to the Official UO Calendar for Baja:

    • The Wedding of Lady Caelie and Lord Onyx

    • Facet: Trammel
      Location: Magincia Merchant Guild
      Time: March 24th, 12-2pm PST

      Lady Caelie and Lord Onyx will be joined in marriage. Everyone is welcome to attend and witness this joyous event. The Merchant's Guild is located on the northern side of Magincia, near the beach. After the wedding, there will be a reception at the tavern on the southern side of town.

      Please, no pets, unless they were tamed by Lady Caelie. Only large pets tamed by the bride may attend. For further details or information please send an email. The bride and groom hope to see many bright, smiling faces in attendance!

    • Wedding of Lord Wolvie of V.O.H to Vixen of MaN

    • Facet: Trammel
      Location: Magincia Merchant's Guild
      Time: April 7th, 7pm-8pm PST

      All are invited to attended the wedding of Lord Wolvie and Vixen, come one come all! Contact V.O.H. or MaN for further information.

    Posted by Thellaren at 2:15 AM

    Baja Date Night (Trammel)

    The following was posted to the offical UO Calendar for Baja:

    Location: Nu�jelm palace (Trammel)
    Time: March 25th , 8pm-12am PST
    Sponsor: Lords and Ladies of the Elvenwood

    (Couples Only Please!)
    The Baja Date Night will begin at the Nu'Jelm Palace at 8:00 pm PST time. The itenerary is as follows:

    8:00 PM: Romantic Poetry Readings at the Nu'Jelm palace. Compose your own original or recite a famous tale to express your true feelings for your date :)

    9:00 PM (or sooner should there be a lack of poets in the audience): A gate will be provided to the Elvenwood House of Lights for a Romantic candle-lit dinner. Food and beverages will be provided. There will be servants on-hand to serve and look after you. If you are in a warring guild, please try not to bring your issues to this date. The House of Lights is a large-marble located just north of Minoc and will be arranged to hold the large number of visitors. If you haven't yet seen this house... it is truly a marvel. Many thanks to Lord Val for allowing us to use it. Feel free to roam the spawnless land and cozy woods to the north to spend some free time with your date.

    10:00 PM on: Gates will be provided to the most romantic of locales, The Star Room. Take your date for a romantic walk amongst the stars! Spend some time here wooing your would-be better-half or just sit and enjoy the company. Each couple will be given their own "lawnchairs" should they wish to sit a while in the Star Room. At 1am, the last gate will open to Britain.

    Hopefully many new relationships will bloom this eve and allow many couples the chance to escape from the monsters and evil in the realm to spend an evening with one another in the solace of their joy!

    Posted by Thellaren at 2:01 AM

    Tomes of Power - On Display at the Mage Tower (Trammel)

    The following notice was also seen posted at the Trammel Mage Tower:

    Nekkar of the Tower, has located a most precious item, The tomes of Power!

    The other mages will be so excited when they can once again view the contents of this most valuable item", said Nekkar while placing the book down onto a display table within the walls of the Mage Tower.

    Written by Lord Zog, the book explains in detail the Tomes of Thaumaturgy, the purest form of etheral power. These methods have been outlawed by the Great Council due to the shear power. The Mage Tower felt it a necessary source of information, to aid in ones learning of the art of Magery.

    So if you are in the area of the Mage Tower, please stop by and take a look at this item.

    Nimble, Bard of the Mists
    The Baja Mage Tower

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:50 AM

    Weekend Dungeon Crawl (Trammel)

    The following notice was pinned to the Mage Tower door:

    DUNGEON CRAWL - THIS SATURDAY!! MARCH 24

    Nekkar, looks around the empty tower and notices a small yellow bag, full of runes - he quickly examines the markings on each of them, they all say "A dungeon" - he chuckles

    It is time again for another Dungeon Crawl. I feel it in my veins!

    Location: Mage Tower Trammel
    Time: March 24 at 7:00pm (PST)
    Dungeon: Unknown at this time....

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:46 AM

    March 22, 2001

    Golems Sighted in Skara Brae

    I was at the bank last night minding my own business when I saw a pair of Golems walk up to me. One seemed to be examining me...while the other was "searching for a new target". A few moments later the golems spotted a wild pack horse. They began screetching "exterminate!" and they killed the horse with their halberds.

    A few other citizens of Skara Brae looked on with a mixture of shock and uneasy laughter. A few followed the golems out of town...watching to see what they would do next.

    One can only wonder....Is Azalin the Lich involved in this?

    The Shadow Imperium

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:53 AM

    BNN Weekly #14

    The Britannian News Network has posted their Weekly #14 report which you can listen to by tuning your communication receivers to the following setting.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:49 AM

    An Introduction to Ilshenar

    The following account was posted to the Britannia News Network by Jerno Milk:

    Introduction

    Mondain ruled for 1000 years using the Gem of Immortality to control Sosaria and bend it to his will. Mondains reign ended when a Stranger from the stars arrived, destroyed Mondain, and shattered the Gem of Immortality. In the world we live in this was the end of the first age of darkness, but not in Ilshenar. Let us not jump ahead though. First we must speak of shards and facets and what we know about them.

    When the Gem of Immortality was shattered an image of Sosaria was captured in each of the broken shards. Each shard from that point further, as far as we can tell, has its own history and peoples. In recent years we have discovered that within each shard there are what may be limitless facets that contain individual worlds - again with their own histories and peoples. The possibility of infinity inside of infinity has many people at this very moment rather upset and thinking if there are layers beneath our current layer, could we not be another layer under some other worlds layer? I leave that thinking to the philosophers.

    In the world we know we now have our original facet, Felucca, and our new facet, Trammel. One must also consider that Minax too did come from another facet. As to the nature of her previous world we know very little, but I digress. Trammel is in itself an oddity for it did not exist until Lord British and Nystul cast their magicks to make it so. How exactly this sorcery works it beyond my meager knowledge, beyond the fact that Lord British and Nystul drew power directly from the Virtues themselves to make it so.

    Then what of Ilshenar our newly discover facet?
    To read more about Ilshenar, proceed to the following accounts, posted at the BNN offices:

    An Introduction to Ilshenar : Part I

    An Introduction to Ilshenar : Part II

    An Introduction to Ilshenar : Part III

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:31 AM

    More on UO2 Cancellation

    Lum the Mad added the following information into the UO2 cancellation pyre:

    UO2 Cancelled

    Latest update as of 3:30p: Massive layoffs throughout EA. 85 from OSI alone. Kesmai also gutted (at least 40, Battletech and Air Warrior 4 both cancelled) and 80 elsewhere in EA. Harry Potter cancelled. Jack Heistand (OSI's CEO) gone. Gordon "Tyrant" Walton moved to Sims Online.

    This site [Lum's site, that is. -Ed.], along with the rest of XRGaming is suffering frequent outages today. You can get the latest from our IRC chat room (irc.sorcery.net #lummies).

    Our sincere condolences today to everyone who was hit by this.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 12:29 AM

    Once Returned

    This interesting account was recently discovered on the Kingdom of Dawn Public Forum:

    His hand glides slowly over a smooth mahagony desk. His steel grey eyes float about the mages tutorium. Desks and bookshelfs lined up in rows. Much like he remembered. But then, how long had it been? His memory was coming back, but there still remained a great many holes within it. Apon entering the kingdom with Queen Hayloh and her escort last night, he had noticed several new buildings. Signs of prosperity and growth. He smiled on this thought. In this bleak chaos stricken world, at least one glimmer of hope remained true.

    He turned from the mages tutorium and headed down stairs, offering a candid smile to those he passed by. He didnt remember many of their names, and they seemed quite in awe of him. This brought a blush to his face. This kingdom had once taken him in, placing faith in a questing knight of the virtues. Heralding to his call in the name of them. As with most, they were not truly virtuous. But then, was anyone? Nay, but like himself, what separated them from the others, was their steadfast devotion to strive for them. To make light in a dark world. He held great admiration for the King who stood in Lord British's shadow. Lord British had built an empire and tried to bind them to the virtues. King Desmond had created a small kingdom, where they embraced the virtues. That was the difference.

    His memory recalled when Lord British abandoned this land. Fled to a new facet of the shards, leaving many behind toi suffer at Minax's hand. He had gone to the King, to ask that they not flee as well, and stand with him against the tides of darkness. And he did so. In Trinsic, the allied forces had rallied with the Knights of Dawn and engaged Juo'nar to the bitter end. A proud moment indeed in this Kingdom's history.

    He remembered sitting with the King and Queen, negotiating for peace with an angry Orcen tribe. Other cities and fiefdoms criticized King Desmond for doing so. Yet the virtues teach not to hate, but to trust and befriend. At great risk to his people and at great loss of respect from neutral nations, they stood by the virtues, and they shown the way.

    He smiled as he thought on last night. Meeting Wraith again was interesting. Once a quest knight himself, he wondered what had become of that knighthood. When he had left, they had partitioned themselves suscinctly to their individual virtues and by doing so, unknowingly abandoning them. He recalled his decision to leave them. For he felt they leaned on him as one would a crutch. No longer would they strive to be virtuous, so long as he was there to embody it for them. He had left that they may find the true meaning of the virtues and tarry not over which virtue emblazoned their knight's pin. That was a sad day, and he had only himself to blame. He had failed them. Failed to empower them with the virtues as had been his intention.

    Casting aside sad thoughts, he sat before several books and opened one. He was home now. And he had many to thank for it. Arrianna's great sacrifice in bringing him back. Further, for finding a way to make such possible. Queen Hayloh's unending support of his silly quests. Not many would believe in him so trustingly. It was time to restore the virtues, and so many quests left undone. He would embark on those quests again, to bring the relics of the virtues back to this one nation that would stand in defense of the virtues.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:17 AM

    A Plea to the Seers and Implementors

    This recent message was seen posted by King Desmond of Dawn:

    A recent magical event, known by some as a "patch", caused our loyal and friendly Town Cryer to vanish. It has been several weeks since her disappearance, and we fear for her safety and well being. We pray to the Seers and Implementors of the shard for her safe return to our kingdom, for she has long served as a source of news from far-off Britain and is sorely missed! Rumour has it that the Town Cryer assigned in nearby Avalon has also disappeared, and we hope that whatever has caused this will soon be resolved and that our Town Cryers will soon be returned to their homes.

    Desmond Cross

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:09 AM

    March 21, 2001

    Well Rounded Entertainment on UO2 Cancellation

    This follow-up to the news about UWO:Origin (UO2) being cancelled was posted by Well Rounded Entertainement, here:

    EA cancels Ultima Online 2

    Electronic Arts has dropped a bomb on the massively multiplayer gaming world. The company has ceased work on Ultima Worlds Online: Origin (the game better known as Ultima Online 2).

    In a statement released today, EA's Origin Studios said:

    Electronic Arts and Origin Systems have announced a plan that will increase their focus on Ultima Online and halt production of OWO: ORIGIN (UO2). The reason is simple, rather than creating OWO: ORIGIN (UO2) as a parallel world competing with UO, we've decided to put those resources into growing and improving the core offering for Ultima Onlines 230,000 loyal subscribers. In the near future and with the release next week of Ultima Online: Third Dawn , players will see new lands, new creatures and a world that is continually evolving within Ultima Online.

    Origin spokesman David Swofford tells WRE that the decision came as a surprise to the Austin, Texas-based division, but he sees the logic in the move.

    "The upside to this, if there is any, is we're taken the resources and putting them into Ultima Online. We plan to continue to invest and put resources into UO," he says.

    Exactly how many of UO2's technological resources will be able to make the transition is a bigger question, though. The game, as it was shown at last year's E3, was designed as a fully 3-D world. The forthcoming Third Dawn will feature 3-D models, but falls far short of all that was being planned for UO2.

    For fans of massively multiplayer online role playing games, Swofford told WRE that today's move should not be interpreted as a decision by the company to abandon that segment of the industry.

    "Corporate wide, EA has big plans for PSWs (persistant state worlds) in other studios," he says. "It's not like Origin was the only studio working on these."

    Among the other massively multiplayer games EA is working now is Westwood's Earth and Beyond.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:35 PM

    OSI: Cynthe on the Cancellation of UO2

    Cynthe posted the following to the Boards at www.uo2.com, here:

    It is true

    The news about ORIGIN's cancellation is true. I wish I could say this in a way that makes everyone suddenly understand the reasonings behind it, but that way doesn't exist, so I'll simply say I'm sorry. To all the fans who have been waiting for ORIGIN, I'm sorry.

    After taking a long hard look at where we are, and how much will still be needed to get us to the polished shape we would need to achieve for ship, we have come to the decision that, instead of putting those resources into a game that competes so closely with the still-growing Ultima Online, we need to dedicate everything we have to expanding and supporting UO. This will enable us to concentrate on supporting the 230,000 players who are already in UO, rather than dividing our resources between the game that is still growing and one that would run directly alongside. By pouring everything we have into UO, this opens up possibilities that UO has simply never had before now.

    Again, I know this is a surprising move, and I know that some of you will understand that the gaming industry can be quite volatile. The UO2 community has been one of the brightest and passionate communities I've worked with, and I look forward to seeing many of you in UO.

    Cynthe
    (Community & Web Coordinator)

    Posted by Nobody at 4:16 PM

    OSI: OWO: Origin Cancelled!

    The following statement was released to the OWO: ORIGIN website today:

    Electronic Arts and Origin Systems have announced a plan that will increase their focus on Ultima Online and halt production of OWO: ORIGIN (UO2). The reason is simple, rather than creating OWO: ORIGIN (UO2) as a parallel world competing with UO, we've decided to put those resources into growing and improving the core offering for Ultima Online's 230,000 loyal subscribers. In the near future and with the release next week of Ultima Online: Third Dawn, players will see new lands, new creatures, and a world that is continually evolving within Ultima Online.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:07 PM

    A Return to Lessons

    Mirabel leads Blade up the steep hill that leads to Caelyn's small stone dwelling. Underneath the shade of one of the huge Yew trees, this small cave-like structure had been her home for many months at a time as she had studied with her master. She smiles a little, remembering happier times, when she and Lucas had made this trip together... excited to be leaving home and their parents on such an adventure. The forest here in Trammel looks little different than it had in her youth in Felucca.. She knew Caelyn longed to return to Felucca and begin the healing of the land, but the druids of his circle were forbidden to dwell in a land ruled by Minax. Mirabel shook her head sadly at the great loss, at all the destruction.. then continued her climb.

    She must stay focused on her purpose. Although she cannot admit it to herself, she is concerned for Ivy's health and knows that delay serves only to hasten what now seems inevitable. By all rights, she shouldn't even be here, she thinks. What does she care for the life of the Mistress of the Dark Tower.. She who has hurt so many deserves a bit of suffering herself, doesn't she? Ah, but there's the catch, Mirabel thinks. She has suffered. She continues to. And if this illness is not cured, it will kill her. Curing it might be beyond all hope, but.. if it is possible to lend comfort, gain some time.. If Mirabel's healing skill can give that gift.. then is she not obligated to do so? Caelyn would say she was. Others will feel differently. Mirabel pushes her hair out of her eyes, pausing to think for a moment.

    This is a point of no return. Once she asks Caelyn for his help... once she begins the research into a kind of healing she has never done before... Duty requires that she see it through to the end. She must make her decisions now, before she climbs this last bit of the hill. She can see her master's home just ahead.

    Ivy does not serve the virtues, as I do, Mirabel thinks. She does not even serve goodness. She serves herself and the Tower. But.. as I serve the virtues.. and I serve the light.. I must, in all compassion, do this thing for my enemy if it is within my power.

    Mirabel nods her head once, sealing her resolve. Taking up Blade's lead rope, she urges him up the last bit of the steep incline.

    "Caelyn! You about?"

    She smiles as he pokes his head out of his house, and as he sees her he breaks into a wide grin.

    "Aye now lass. Come here and give me a hug!" he exclaims. "It's been too long since we've seen you here."

    Mirabel nodded. "Things..." she gropes for the right words, how best to explain the last several months? "Things have been.. hectic. I've missed you," she replies, returning his hug warmly.

    Caelyn frowns a little at her tone, and pushes her back to study her face. He notes the strain in her face, and looking into her eyes, he can see sadness.. "What has happened, child.. Isolated as we are, we had little word of your marriage save its announcement.. I am sorry I could not make the trip.. are things not well? Is your lord unkind? Do you come here seeking refuge?"

    Mirabel smiles a sad smile. "My lord is not my lord, Caelyn. Much has happened and I will tell you all.. but that is not why I am here. I am.. getting better, myself. I come here on another's behalf, seeking your counsel on how best to proceed."

    Caelyn nods slowly, measuring her response. "Alright then. Let us go inside, and we can talk.. and you can tell me why you are here."

    She takes her pack off the horse and lets him wander about the yard, knowing he won't stray far.. and follows Caelyn inside.

    Posted by Brenstar at 1:29 AM

    March 19, 2001

    OSI: Client Patch 3.0.0

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Client Patch 3.0.0

    We are currently releasing client patch 3.0.0. This patch synchronizes version numbers for the client in preparation for the release of Third Dawn.

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:17 PM

    Treasure Hunters of Britannia to Host Competition!

    The following report from Cypress was posted to UOSS:

    Treasure Hunters of Britannia to Host Competition!

    Hail! The Baja Chapter of the Treasure Hunters of Britannia will host an event on Saturday, March 24, at 1:00pm Pacific Time. It will take place at the guild HQ in Trammel which is located at sextant coordinates 29:10S 55:41E. It is located on an island south of Britain, so you will need a boat to get there. A gate will appear every 10 minutes between 12:40 and 1:20 in Lord British's throne room as well.

    Everyone is welcome to attend. Bring some maps and find a treasure hunter to hire. Non-THB hunters are also encouraged to attend as well.

    We'll start out with a simple meet and greet, and if there is some interest we can go on a quick tour of the Khaldun puzzle chests or the best dungeon lockpicking sites. The real fun will start at 1:45pm when we hold the CONTEST:

    Teams of 4 people will supply a level 3 treasure map. The goal is to loot the chest and dispatch the guardian spawn as quickly as possible. Entrance fee is 10k gold (easy to recover from the chest loot), and we'll restrict the contest to 10 teams. The team with the fastest time wins all the entrance money. (100k)

    To make things fair, the following rules will be observed.
    • The Treasure Hunter does not have to be a member of the THB.
    • The team of 4 may or may not include the treasure hunter. If not a part of the 4, the job of the treasure hunter is to dig and unlock the chest ONLY, and cannot participate in any other form.
    • No dragons/wyrms/pets are allowed. If you ride a mount of any sort (ie: mare), it can only fight if you die.
    • Only 1 bard per team is allowed.
    • Only 1 person on the team is allowed to loot the chest. This person will be designated by the team prior to digging up the chest.
    • A member of the THB will act as timekeeper and judge. Clock is started when the intial guardian spawn emerges. The clock stops when the looter yells "EMPTY" and all the monsters are vanquished.
    • All the monsters must be dispatched (killed). The team does not have to "force" more monsters out of the chest, but is free to do so after the official time is recorded.
    • Spectators are allowed but they must remain hidden or invised at all times. The team has the right to refuse any spectator prior to gating to the treasure site.
    • The map should be for Trammel...This way problems with hidden people blocking won't be an issue.
    The hunts will happen more or less simultaneously, depending on the number of judges and spectators. The goal is to be done by 2:30pm, after which we'll head back to the headquarters for the apres-hunt wine and cheese and award ceremony.

    To register a team, send an email to: redshiftdragon@home.com.
    Cypress,
    Baja Shardmaster of THB

    Posted by Nobody at 6:11 PM

    The Last Man Standing Event

    The following report from Cymidei Fier was posted to UOSS:

    The Last Man Standing Event

    Tonight steel was ringing as monsters assailed Britan's most stalwart men and women in the famous Last Man Standing Event. Harried by waves of ice fiends, dragons, lich lords, mummies, and giant black widow spiders the field of competitors was brutally narrowed down to the finalists:
    • Kerik - First Place, Last Man Standing
    • Lord Washburn - Second Place
    • Revelation - Third Place
    • Greywind - Fourth Place
    • Thorin Orcist - Fifth Place
    Thank you Seers Takara and Hawk for sponsering this event! And congratulations to Kerik, Last Man Standing

    Posted by Nobody at 6:06 PM

    OSI: Third Dawn Beta Message Boards

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Third Dawn Beta Message Boards

    As a reminder, the Ultima Online: Third Dawn beta message boards will close later today, March 19th. We will be archiving the contents of the message boards to allow the QA team to address any open issues, however we will be shifting focus back to our regular bug reporting method using the tcbugs@uo.com email box. Please direct any additional bugs to either of these email boxes and include the following information:
    • Client Version Number. This is located at the bottom of the main UO login screen.
    • Server Name
    • Detailed Bug Description (step-by-step, tell us what you did and what happened)
    • Date/Time of Occurrence
    • Location (Sextant coordinates, facet, and city location)
    • On-site references (If you spoke with a counselor or GM, what was his/her name and what were you told?)
    It is extremely important to include the necessary steps to recreate a bug, thus allowing the QA Team to promptly review it. We do recommend that you try to be as concise as possible when sending in reports as well. Try to tell us only those steps that were necessary to activate the bug.

    We would like to thank everyone who took the time to concisely report bugs during this beta period. Your input was invaluable to Ultima Online: Third Dawn.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:54 PM

    March 18, 2001

    The Path of the Dead

    *Screams of pain echo through the Tower, deepening the darkness. Beldock looks up for a moment thinking to himself, Those screams. With a shrug of disinterest, he pulls out his leather bound book on the Paths. Thinking the screams almost sound like a death cry, he decides to write next on the Path of the Dead*

    Blood. Death. Rituals in the night. What more can be said about these death worshiping members of our Tower? Much. They have the power that no mage was ever born to have. An unnatural power to summon forth armies of the undead. Even I shudder at such power. To cross one, was a fate to come back and serve them. dead. Once again, I bring forth the ancient book on the Paths, and quote from that dark tome.

    The Second Path of the Dark Tower, the Path of the Dead was based upon the element of Earth. It was the Necromancers who made up this Path. A small but powerful group, the Necromancers were secretive and tended to disassociate from the rest of the Dark Tower. Those on the Path of the Dead were also notorious for working well together, most likely due to the ritualistic nature of their magic. It has been suggested by some that the Path of the Dead is the Dark Tower, for they draw their power from the deaths caused by the other Paths

    *Beldock finishes his notes for another evening, as he hears footsteps outside the Library door. Getting up to see what all the activity is, he sees a man running from the roof, bleeding from a severe wound to his stomach from an unexpected attack. The man does not even notice Beldock standing there, due to pain and fright he has just faced. Wondering what or whom has caused this, he sees a mounted man on a horse with long gray hair. Father Beldock says, nodding to his adoptive father, Captain Trips*

    Lord Beldock, Cabal of Ether, DT

    Posted by Brenstar at 8:13 PM

    The All New Map of the Seas and Sea Spawn Changes

    A new update was just added to the Turbulent Waters site:

    I've finally completed my survey of the alterations wrought by the changes to the spawn engine implemented awhile back, and finished a map of those spawn points as well as points of interest and oddities. As always, there's good news and bad news when it comes to the spawn changes.

    The good news is that there are still around 45 set locations on the sea where water elementals, sea serpents, and dolphins spawn naturally. The respawning of an elemental after killing one is rather quick, too. It should be noted, though, that places such as the east coast of Moonglow, where water elementals were very abundant are now reduced somewhat. Often there, one could encounter 3 or 4 elementals wandering around within a screen of each other. Now they spawn one or two at a time, mostly.

    The bad news is the drastic reduction of near-shore spawn. Near-shore spawn consists of winged or amphibious creatures that wander into the water from their land-based spawn points. One used to be able to sail along the shore east of Britain and encounter abundant harpies and gargoyles, but this spawn has been essentially elimated. In addition, certain amphibious beasts have lost their ability to enter the water, further reducing, although not eliminating entirely, the near-shore spawn.

    The Map of the Sea, has been enhanced to include the location of not only the sea spawn points, but points of interest, rare spawns, and all the oddities previously listed on the Secrets of the Sea section. Also charted are ship-mining spots, server boundaries, and the Haven Barrier. Of course, this map was compiled from research of the seas on the Atlantic shard, Felucca facet. While the sea spawn points and oddity locations should be the same, actual oddities may vary from shard to shard. Enjoy!

    Posted by Thellaren at 4:30 PM

    Path of the Blade

    *Lord Beldock sits in the Library of the Tower while Grohl silently reads the tomes of old. As Beldock continues his writings on the Paths, merry-making folk gather in the land of Trammel at Darkmor. Unknowing to them, forces slowly gather around the Dark Tower*

    The Blades are unique to the Tower, for they are not usually a mage. They are a hard, tough and quick on their feet. Quick to fight and usually the first into battle. They make up the armies of the Dark Tower. In times of need, the ranks of the Blade swell into vast armies that have lain waste to many towns and cities. Another verse from an ancient text I will quote here:

    The Fourth Path of the Dark Tower was known as the Path of the Blade. This Path corresponded to the element of Water. The...a peculiarity among the Dark Tower, for those who numbered among its ranks were known to have a sense of honor, however twisted it may be...associated with...ritual drink...of suitably consecrated water. It was this Path that made up the Dark Paladins. Many of our grimmer fairy tales involve these feared characters as the primary villains.

    *Beldock concludes his writings with a poem that Ivy whispered during a fevered sleep*

    Sonnet of the Blade

    "We hungrily search for a bit of food
    Stalking, silent, through the forest's dark night
    Knowing we are evil, we flee from good
    I bind with my spell, while she causes fright.
    My wielder now shuns me just as the light.
    Battle cries erupt as she pulls me free;
    One against many, we will win this fight.
    I feed on her soul and one we shall be.
    Although I am steel and mere flesh be she,
    I am her master and she is my slave.
    I will return to her, mine she shall be.
    She is stubborn, her resistance is brave.
    Killing enemies I feed her their souls;
    Blackness inside is the highest of tolls..."

    Lord Beldock, Cabal of Ether, DT

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:26 PM

    Last Night's Auction

    Ursula posted the following "thank you" message at the Golden Brew's message board, here:

    Last Night's Auction

    Thank you so much to everyone who participated in last night's event!

    Including Cymidei's offer for Thorin Orcrist our grand total came to....*drum roll*....

    One million, two hundred thousand gold!!

    Now when the carpenters learn to build a stage we'll be set!

    Thanks again to everyone. Here are a couple pictures courtesy of Delorn.


    Taylor pays 100K for the company of the lovely Pasque


    The lucky Lady Merria nabs Adian O'Rourke

    Posted by Nobody at 10:46 AM

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.9a

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Client Patch 2.0.9a

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.9a. This patch addresses a crash related to viewing certain magic items while the items are in containers or are equipped.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:07 AM

    Heaven's Forge Abduction, Skye Lost to Drow

    On the evening of March 17th, the town of Heaven's Forge during a St. Patrick's day celebration Skye of CDC was kidnapped by a group of Drow. The unexpected guests' names are believed to be Briquet, Burdet, and Brizet supposedly being the "prince of the drow".

    That Dark Elves promptly began to harass the guests and claim that Heaven's Forge kill without honor, specifically trolls, orcs and ettins. They also demand three trades for Skye's life. Darius, the mayor has agreed to their terms and has instructed Lynx and Anya to have all the guards remove their guild insignia to appear as if they are normal citizens, and not on patrol. The second demand is a mass wealth of five million gold coins. While that is nearly impossible, Darius has no choice but to play along for now. The last demand is that the mayor step down and Buzzit takes his place.

    "Tonight the citizens of Heaven's Forge and invited guests from all over Britannia to enjoy a peaceful St. Patrick's day celebration," stated the mayor "Burnzit and his lackeys came in and started spouting their dogma again. I offered them to stay and enjoy the celebration in peace, or to please leave. He said that Skye would suffer for my actions. They left for a while, but returned again to harass our guests. Regardless the evening was a success."

    The town is now calling to it's allies for assistance in this situation the mayor feels it does not deserve, as most everyone would agree. Darius feels sympathetic for her friends, and Goliath who has loved Skye for many moons. "I now have called upon the guard, and I call upon the armed guilds, citizens of Heaven's Forge and all of our allies. I bid you help Heaven's Forge. I've learned that there can be no honorable, peaceful outcome with these drow. Regardless of what we do, they will hurt or kill Skye. I plead with you, our forces and allies. Rid us and Britannia of these vermin. Find where they live and rescue Skye if at all possible, but eliminate them at all costs," the mayor finally said.

    Posted by Brenstar at 8:46 AM

    March 17, 2001

    Craft Faire 2001

    The following announcement from Vadin was posted to UOSS:

    Craft Faire 2001

    The Legion of Emerald Sashes Proudly presents Craft Faire 2001. There will be games and fun for all the Citizens of Britainnia.

    Crafters who will ply their trade in exchange for raw goods. So bring your blank scroll, or enough hides for some armor, and get to know the Legion. (Limits apply)

    See any Emerald Sash Counsel member for details, or visit our halls

    Time and Location: March 25, 2001 1:00pm PST Skara Brae Fair Grounds Baja Shard in Trammel

    Vadin,
    Lord of Magi
    Legion of the Emerald Sash

    Posted by Nobody at 3:31 PM

    OPUS joins Ravenshire

    The following announcement from Lord Dracon was posted to UOSS:

    OPUS joins Ravenshire

    The crafts guild OPUS has changed to RavenShire Artisians Union it reflects Maston Sempers new town and there is a link to the City's webpage on the our webpage. If anyone has any questions or concerns please feel free to send those my way. I will be happy to answer. The website is at http://www.geocities.com/dracon79

    Lord Dracon GuildMaster

    Posted by Nobody at 3:29 PM

    Renovations planned for the Sky Malls

    The following announcement from Lord Durnik was posted to UOSS:

    Renovations planned for the Sky Malls

    Greetings,

    I am Lord Durnik , ICQ # 17484064, and I have some terrific news concerning the 4 Castle in the Sky Malls on Baja. In the next few weeks, after the Carpet and the floor tiles have been published on Baja, I will be redesigning all 4 Sky Malls. As a result, every merchant will be unfriended and his or her vendor will be removed from the Sky Malls. We will be renovating each Sky Mall One at a time. After Renovation is complete, we will be moving the vendors back in the mall. I personally apologize for any inconveniece this will cause.

    Renovations include the laying of carpet and floor tiles to make the place look sharp. Public Forges, Anvils, Leather Dye Tubs, Furniture Dye Tubs, Black Dye Tubs will be added to all 4 malls. Additionally, we will be placing a Vast Rune Library in each Mall. Runes to Popular Valorite Locations, Rare Locations and Cities, Shrines, Towns and a Complete Set Of Dungeon Runes.

    Additionally, I will take personal care to ensure the fluff vendors are removed fom each Sky Mall. I will be posting a new complete Rule Book for each merchant in the Sky Malls. Its time to remove the bad vendors and get good quality merchandise. To help me in this endeavor, I will be gathering a group of 12 players who will be promoted to Mall Manager. These individuals will be incharge of day to day monitoring of the malls. Each mall will have 3 Mall Managers and Sir Hartman II will be promoted to General Superviser of all 4 Malls. Expect to see a vast change to each of the Sky Malls in the near future.

    Furthermore, During the Renovation process, I will be hiring decoraters to help in the renovation process. If you are interested in being an interior Decorater for the Sky Mall, please feel free to ICQ me.

    Thank You for your time,
    Lord Durnik

    Posted by Nobody at 3:28 PM

    Client Patch 2.0.9

    The following was posted to the FYI page at the Ultima Online Web site:

    Client Patch 2.0.9

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.9. This patch addresses addresses a crash fix related to certain localization files.

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:13 PM

    Vendor Changes Observations

    The following two observations on Vendor changes were posted to UOSS

    Vendor Owners Pay Attention Please

    This was posted on our Trade Forum by dasmart:
    An issue with vendors has come to light that can be absolutely devastating.

    The recent patch rollouts have changed the way in which gold is retrieved from a vendor. Basically, you now get a check for all the gold the vendor is carrying rather than just the max amount of gold you can carry at the time.

    That's the problem: you get ALL the gold the vendor has, including the gold it needs for its own support! This means you get a check, dump it in the bank, log out, and the next day you find the vendor gone and all the items you placed on it for sale looted by other players when the vendor decayed minutes or hours after you left.

    This may or may not be a bug but the way to handle it, I believe, is to carry some gold coin with you when you go to check your vendors. Retrieve your vendor's gold (automatically in check form..you can't change this), drop the gold coin on your vendor to maintain it, THEN restock your vendor with goods and use the Status command to confirm how long the vendor has before decaying (based on the prices of the goods you just restocked it with).

    Thanks for the warning. I sure hope all vendor owners will take heed and pay their vendor with gold coins after retrieving the check for all gold from it. Here is how vendors deal with giving their owner money.
    Player-owned vendors will be able to give the gold they are holding to their owners in bank check form if the amount is between 4999 gold and 1 million gold. If the gold amount being held for the player by the vendor is between 4999 and 1 million gold, the vendor will hand this to the owner in the form of a bank check (as long as the vendor is actually carrying this amount). If the amount is less equal to or less then 4999 gold then the vendor will hand the owner the amount in gold form. If the gold held by the vendor is more than 1 million gold, the vendor will retain the amount over 1 million gold until the next request for gold is made by the player.
    More Detailed information on Vendors and Gold

    James Wife of Napa Valley sent me this regarding the previous news post on vendors
    Dear Xena

    Thanks for the vendor post, but there was a mis-statement in the post about Player-operated vendors...It is true that when you say vendor gold now to collect your profits, the vendor places a check for all the money he can give you in your main backpack. If you have not personally dropped gold coins on his head recently, he will be UNPAID and will decay in his next refresh period (every 5 minutes the vendors take a portion of the money in reserve and send it home to their families in the country to support them)

    Here is the new change: When a vendor runs out of support money now, they dissapear--vanish, with no body, no backpack containing your wares, and most importantly, no death scream. They just dissapear. This has been confirmed and replicated by me and one other friend of mine on a different account. I lost over a million in goods in the time it takes to recall to a bank and back. Therefore, I would advise-Do not wait to hand your vendor gold until after he has given you the check. Give him gold BEFORE you say "William Gold please" and then then retrieve your own pay. Just like in real life, employees should be paid before the owner sees any of the profits. Also, If any of you are missing the old statement our vendors used to give us about how many days they would serve you (I hate doing the math myself,) open your journal before you request information. Apparently, They still report this precious tidbit of info, but they report it first and since one can only say 3 lines at a time, the # of days worth of reserve pay that the vendors have on them gets pushed off your screen by the other 3 statements-- Gold available, gold in reserve (salary) and cost per UO day (which by the way lasts 2 real life hours.)

    Various other readers also informed me of the fact that a Vendor has in fact two wallets, one that holds the money you pay him and one that holds the money from sold goods to other players. If there is money in the first wallet then the vendor will use that to maintain itself. As long as you keep the first wallet filled you are not in any danger, and you can collect money from the "sold goods" wallet without having to fear he will be gone some day.

    Some believe that once the first wallet is empty, the vendor will instantly disappear, others believe that the vendor will start taking money from the "sold goods" wallet like they used to do long before bank checks even existed. In any case, if the vendor's first wallet is empty, chances of his sudden departure have increased dramatically. As James suggests, it's safest to pay him first and collect the gold later. And of course check your vendor's status frequently by asking...

    I hope this clears up some of the confusion about vendors and their gold.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:07 PM

    March 16, 2001

    Reaching a Goal

    The candle light flickered. Ivy carefully read over the last line of the script. She hadn't slept in days. Her eyes were stinging, and she could barely lift her head. These past days had been hell. After returning the Countess to Dawn, she had decided to return to her studies of advancing in her magic.

    A harsh cough shook the Mistress' slight form. She covered her mouth with a soft cloth until it passed. When she pulled it away, she knew what she'd see. Blood. Much the same as she had witnessed from her former love, ages ago it seemed. She sighed. Soon, she hoped it would be done with. He grew better as his skill increased. She had hoped it would be the same for her. Thus far though... it had only gotten worse.

    With the words of power just behind her lips, she forced herself up the stairs of the Dark Tower. This would be it. The true test of her studies. All the practice, all the pain... the sheer agony... done with this day. She would finally taste the sweetness of success. She didn't know where Lefty was... or if he still lived in this world, but this was for him. It always had been. From the first spell she ever cast, to this very moment.

    Standing in the center of the pentagram, she shouted the words of the spell to the darkening sky. And she waited. Nothing happened. She looked around confused. Even before now, when she had tried this... she could feel her failure. But this time was different. The world was silent, almost frozen. Then she heard it, and felt it. A roar in the ether. It built in her ears and she felt it flooding into her body.

    She was filled with elation at having finally succeeded, but her joy was short lived as excrutiating pain ripped through her. She fought with all that she was to control it. For what seemed like an eternity, the ethereal waves tore at her very being, bringing pain where pleasure should have been. And finally it stopped. The Mistress dropped to her knees.

    "Now," she breathed the words aloud, yet to herself, "I am... worthy of my place."

    She forced herself to her feet and down the stairs. She reached the stone of the Tower. And laid her hand on it. 'You have done well Mistress. Regain our glory. Return the structure I was born to.' The warm voice washed over her mind. Whispering, yet clear as a bell.

    The door opened behind her, she turned to see Beldock, astride his Nightmare steed. The world was swimming in front of her eyes. They argued. He was going to smother her ability to use magic, to save her from the "ether sickness" she suffered from. In desperation to prove she would survive, she set her spellbook aflame. He put it out. And put away his private spellbook. He would not blanket her abilities.

    Relief flooded her and the sudden release of stresses only weakened her. She weaved unsteadily on her feet. Beldock lifted her from her feet. She felt fever creeping over her, yet she shivered. He set her on her cot and covered her. All the events from the casting of that final spell had been a haze. She closed her eyes, and passed out, into a deep, exhausted sleep. Only one thought rang through her mind... 'I have finally achieved it...'

    Posted by Brenstar at 7:36 PM

    March 15, 2001

    Comments from Calandryll, Leilo, and LadyMOI

    The following was just posted to Comments from the Team on the UO.com website:

    Comments from Calandryll

    For almost two years, I've spent my time here at OSI listening to player feedback and then going into someone's office (usually a designer) and delivering that feedback to them. I've always enjoyed these conversations, learning the thought processes of the designers and working to find compromises and solutions between the original design and the hundreds of different players' feedback. During that time, I've had more than one person ask me "So when are you going to become a designer?" It's something I have thought about a lot during those meetings.

    Starting next week (Monday, March 19) I'll be on the other side of those conversations as I move from Manager of Community Services to a Designer on the Ultima Online Live team. As much as I truly enjoy Community Relations, the opportunity to work with folks like Sage, Runesabre, and of course reuniting with LadyMOI (the person who hired me in the first place) is something I could not pass up. Add to that the chance to work directly on the game I have played for over 3 years with one of the most dedicated teams I have ever had the pleasure of working with and it really was a no-brainer. I am also very pleased that Leilo is taking over as Community Manager as there is no more qualified person in the industry that I can think more worthy.

    So how does this affect all of you? Well, for one thing, I won't have time to answer anywhere near as much e-mail or post as much as I used to. That's not something I am particular happy about, but given my new responsibilities, the time to do so simply won't be there. I'll still be reading the boards as much as possible though as I've always felt those posts are an invaluable resource to anyone who works on UO. At the same time, I hope to bring what I have learned as a community representative to my role as a designer.

    I do have a long way to go however, before I even approach the level of skill of the current design team. For the next few months, I'll be learning the scripting language, previous designs, and everything else I can before they even let me actually change anything.

    So while this is certainly not a farewell, for me, it does sort of feel like one. It's never easy to leave behind something I helped build from the start, but at the same time, I could not be leaving it in better hands. To say I am excited about this new opportunity would be an understatement and I am looking forward to the future of UO, now more than ever.

    Calandryll
    Comments from Leilo

    On Monday morning (March 19th), I'll be stepping into the role of Manager of Community Services here at OSI. In doing so, I'll be following in the footsteps of two pretty amazing and talented people LadyMOI, who created the Online Community Relations group here and helped lead the group to becoming fully integrated with the game teams, and Calandryll, who has been working with Cynthe and Gbob to expand our community to ORIGIN, while providing Melantus and I with the tools we needed to focus on Ultima Online. Though much of my time has been spent behind-the-scenes in the last year and a half, I've had the fortune to work with many of you in my previous role as UO's Web Content Supervisor - a task that allowed me to work on growing the UO website to support all aspects of the UO community. In my new role, I'll be focused on supporting my team - which includes both community relations teams and the Events team - as they focus on the communities of Ultima Online, ORIGIN, and whatever new and exciting games lie in our future.

    As for the immediate future? I'll be reading your comments on our Message Boards, familiarizing myself with ORIGIN, exploring the new land of Third Dawn, working with Melantus to gather your opinions, and wrestling Calandryll's laptop computer away from him by Monday.

    I'm very excited to be given this opportunity, and I'm looking forward to helping my team work with all of you to keep the communities of UO and ORIGIN exciting, fun, interesting, and productive. The communities surrounding both games are already fantastic, but things can always be better, and I hope with your feedback and participation, we can bring about a great future.

    Leilo
    Comments from LadyMOI

    I hope that you will all join me in congratulating both Calandryll and Leilo on their promotions to these new positions. This is a particularly sweet moment for me, since I am responsible for hiring both of these talented individuals into Origin.

    First Calandryll, who, through his dedication and hard work, helped me to evolve the community relations role into one that is wholly committed to serving the needs of the UO players and the future players of Origin games. Now he will join forces with me again, this time on the dev side of things, where we will continue to listen to what you like and want and need in order to grow and develop UO further and further.

    Leilo was my second hire to Origin and within a few months of her arriving began to develop some of the coolest web features we have seen. Her creativity and her tough as nails work ethic are stellar. You will not be disappointed in her efforts in her new position.

    I feel very proud of these two individuals and am grateful for my continued opportunity to work with them. The future is very exciting.

    LadyMOI

    Posted by Nobody at 6:50 PM

    Test Center Showdown (Lake Inferior vs Baja)

    Inspired by the recent forays of bloodthirsty miners into the hills of Napa Valley, Baja residents hone their eyes on the evil denizens of another shard, Lake Superior. The following was found on the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    Ok guys here's the skinny on our Test Center showdown vs Lake Inferior.

    Be in Britain at the tailor shop with your new characters by 6 PM CST on Sunday (the 18th). Make SURE you make an alchemist as you'll get a Newbie robe (you can easily change the skill later). Once everyone gets rounded around and stocked up with what they need I will be gating to the "Baja guild house" on test center where I will add you all to our guild "Baja Rocks!, BJA". In the house are a couple dye tubs, pink and green, for you to color your robes or clothes however you wish. At 7 we will be meeting back at Britain and will decide on a place to have the PvP war. There are only 2 rules so far:

    1. No looting (it's test center, ur not gaining anything, and it's annoying to have to keep running back to restock)
    2. No reskilling (it's just annoying)

    Me and Foolkiller do have a few tactics up our sleeves. So if you wanna help with us on those I think Foolkiller may already have people lined up to do his but if people wanna help me than just PM me or ICQ me, my number is 17534498.

    DOWN WITH LAKE INFERIOR!

    Eldorian

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:44 AM

    The Normal Guy Web Comic, Ready for Launch!

    The following real life venture from Baja Citizen Eldorian was recently posted over at the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    Hey guys, just wanted to let you all know that my web comic "The Normal Guy" will have it's first comic on Saturday March 17th. The Webcomic is totally drawn and written by myself and has some stories inspired by Startics own Kellogg and even Foolkiller will be making some guest appearances!

    The comic is about just a normal average everyday guy named Andy. He's in college and has a roommate, Calvin. Andy likes online video games and likes to hang out at the local pub and complain about his ex-roommates Gary and Ace (who are the ultimate evil and CHEAP WADS people.) Calvin is pretty much the same as Andy except he's an extreme smart ass and likes to make a few rude comments here and there while all in good fun. He also tries to be suave with the ladies (but fails miserably). They live in a po-dunk midwestern college town where NO ONE is normal except for Andy. Along the way he meets some weird people and joins a fraternity. Thinking they were normal he soons find out they're not all what they cracked up to be... and has some crazy adventures along the way.

    Anyway, just read it. The website can be found by clicking the link on my sig.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 1:34 AM

    March 14, 2001

    Grand Opening of the Town of Ravenshire

    The following announcement from Mayor Maston Semper was posted to UOSS:

    Grand Opening of the Town of Ravenshire

    Hail and well met, We are proud to announce the official celebration and introduction of the Town of Ravenshire and the First Annual Ravenshire Faire. The Town of Ravenshire is located on the Trammel Facet to the north of Vesper and across the river from the Shrine of Sacrifice Please feel free to stop by on the first of April at 3 P.M. Pacific Time and take a tour of our homes and establishments. Our citizens will be on hand with wares, refreshments and will be hosting a number of events for your enjoyment, including horse and relay races, animal fights, and even a scavenger hunt. Thank you to all in advance, and enjoy.

    Maston Semper, Mayor of Ravenshire (RvN)
    Map of Ravenshire
    Town of Ravenshire

    Posted by Nobody at 10:11 PM

    Saint Patricks Day Free Green Armor Giveaway!

    The following announcement from Cloud was posted at UOSS:

    Saint Patricks Day Free Green Armor Giveaway!

    What: UMF St. Patrick's Day Green Leather Giveaway
    Where: Goldie's Emporium of Britain just north of Britain
    13 42 N 24 36 E Trinsic Shop just north of Trinsic
    Moongate 113 38 S 34 18 E
    When: March 17, 2001 12:00pm 3:00pm CST

    In the spirit of St. Patrick's Day, the United Merchants Federation (UMF) is giving away FREE sets of GM exceptionally crafted GREEN studded and leather armor at our shops in Britain and Trinsic. All we ask is that you bring along the materials needed to make the armor i.e. 150 hides for studded and 100 hides for regular leather. We will provide the GM Tailors and leather dye tub to make the armor for you. Limit: 2 sets per customer please. Gates will be provided to and from the shops from Britain's West Bank.

    In addition to giving away the green leather armor, we will be holding a raffle for two sets of full plate Verite armor. All you need to do to qualify is to give us a book (available at any scribe or provisioners shop) with your name and ICQ # on it. We will be notifying the winners immediately after the event is over.

    Even though we will only be crafting green armor free for this event, our vendors will have a variety of other colored leather and armor available. Our shops are well maintained and frequently updated to provide the best in customer satisfaction. Look for many new and exciting player run events in the future including Treasure Map Competitions, Competitive Dungeon Crawls, and other craftable giveaways.

    We hope everyone comes by and visits us to pick up their free armor.

    Cloud of Baja
    Community Relations Chairman
    United Merchants Federation

    Posted by Nobody at 10:09 PM

    Grand Opening of the Town of Ravenshire

    The following was posted to the UO Stratics Baja Forum today:

    We are proud to announce the official celebration and introduction of the Town of Ravenshire and the First Annual Ravenshire Faire.

    The Town of Ravenshire is located on the Trammel Facet to the north of Vesper and across the river from the Shrine of Sacrifice here

    Please feel free to stop by on the first of April at 3 P.M. Pacific Time and take a tour of our homes and establishments. Our citizens will be on hand with wares, refreshments and will be hosting a number of events for your enjoyment, including horse and relay races, animal fights, and even a scavenger hunt. Thank you to all in advance, and enjoy.

    Maston Semper-Mayor of Ravenshire (RvN)

    Posted by Thellaren at 10:02 PM

    OSI: Ultima Online: Third Dawn - Coming Soon!

    The following was just posted to Testing for What's New on the UO.com
    website
    :

    Ultima Online: Third Dawn - Coming Soon!

    We are pleased to officially announce the upcoming release of Ultima Online:
    Third Dawn
    - bringing an exciting new dimension to the world of Britannia. Beginning March 27th (March 20th in Japan), Ultima Online: Third Dawn you'll be able to grab your own copy and start exploring the new and dangerous land of Ilshenar on your favorite Ultima Online shard.

    We will be offering a special upgrade offer to all of our existing Ultima Online customers. For 60 days, starting on March 26th, current UO customers with active accounts will be able to order this special upgrade for a price of $9.95 plus shipping and handling. This promotional upgrade version includes the final gold-mastered version of Third Dawn, the new retail version map of Britannia, the Lost Lands, and Ilshenar, and while supplies last - as a special bonus - we'll include a collector's edition cloth map of Britannia and the Lost Lands. This upgrade CD does not include a registration code and therefore cannot be used to create a new account nor qualify for new account free game time. Alpha and beta testers who do not wish to participate in the upgrade offer will be given the opportunity to order the Ilshenar and cloth maps for $5.95, with shipping and handling paid by Origin Systems.

    In preparation for the launch of Third Dawn, we will officially close the beta testing period on Monday, March 19th. We will be closing the Third Dawn Bug Message Board at that time, and ask that any further issues be directed to tcbugs@uo.com. We appreciate all of the effort that our alpha and beta testers have given to the product and look forward to seeing everyone in this newest incarnation of Britannia.

    Posted by Nobody at 9:14 PM

    OSI: Various Changes and Fixes

    The following was just posted to Testing for Next Update on the UO.com
    website
    :

    Various Changes and Fixes

    An issue with Inscription was fixed

    Some issues with the Faction system were corrected, including:
    • Players with more then one account not being able to join Factions with both accounts simultaneously
    • Silver accumulation and retention issues
    Guildmasters unable to remove players from the guild with names listed on the second viewing page of the guild menu has been fixed.

    Required skills for creating craftable carpentry and tailoring items have been adjusted to require the appropriate level of skill.

    Certain high level creatures were not including treasure maps as part of their loot. This has been fixed.

    House sign hueing issues were corrected.

    The new player tutorial will now accept localized speech commands.

    Vendors will now change directions to face only the vendor owner when spoken to. Additionally, the distance required for owners speaking to vendors to change their directions has been increased. Players wishing to purchase from vendors will now be able to do some from an increased distance as well.

    A problem with dungeon traps overlapping has been corrected

    A problem with the house decoration tool has been corrected in the following
    manner:
    • Yellow boxes are no longer flippable
    • Stackables are no longer flippable
    • Items over 100 stone weight are no longer changeable

    Posted by Nobody at 9:10 PM

    TOL/MT Tournament Results (Felucca)

    On March 10th, the Baja Mage Tower and the Order of Leonine held a joint PvP Tournament at the Feluccian Mage Tower on Verity Island. For a list of winners of this event, please proceed to the BMT Pages here.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:57 AM

    Reminder! Golden's Great Date Auction Friday!

    This Friday, March 16th, at 7:30pm PST come to the Golden Globe Theater in Golden and bid for a date with the man or woman of your dreams!

    Following the auction there will be a party on the roof for the dates to take place. You may choose to have your date at another time or location. People being auctioned off may also bid on another person themselves, so obviously, they'd have to schedule the date at another time.

    Here is the list of volunteers being auctioned off. This is subject to change.

    Adian O'Rourke, Guildmaster of LGG
    Angelica of Avalon
    Kita Talith of Golden
    Pasque of Golden
    Rakhir of Heaven's Forge and RS
    Scorpio of Avalon and Guildmaster of The Scorpions
    S'karlett, Rogue Princess of The Royal Court
    Syrann Ferenczy, Queen of the Gypsies, S^G
    Thibor Ferenczy of The Society of Gypsies
    Thorin Orcrist of The Dark Wardens
    Ursula of Golden
    Wildstar of Dawn

    All proceeds will go to the renovation of the Golden Globe Theater.

    Posted by Ursula at 12:35 AM

    The Path of the Dagger

    *Rain pounds against the Tower on a dark, cold night. Lord Beldock, not noticing much outside the brightly-lit library of the Tower, sits and writes in a finely bound leather book. Dipping a black quill in his ink well, he writes about the Path of the Dagger. *

    The Path of the Dagger

    Ah, the Daggers. A knife in the night, if the gold glinted brightly enough. Never turn your back on them. You may never know if you are marked. The tomes of old, within the Tower speak better then I can about them:

    The Third Path of the Dark Tower, the Path of the Dagger, was related to the element of Air. Quick and mysterious and keeping to the shadows, it was the rogues and assassins who filled these ranks. Certain fighters, such as fencers and the like were also invited to tread this Path. Regardless of occupation, all...this path were synonymous with treachery. It was not uncommon for them to stick a knife in the back of a dear friend even after talking with them. Those on the Path of the Dagger were the only ones among the Dark Tower who were known to sell their services to outsiders

    *Beldock writes further on the Daggers*

    I personally know of one former member, who continued to try and kill me. Many times the forces of good tried to hire him to put a dagger in me. It is said to this day, I am still marked by him. To bad he cant do much from the grave.

    *Early morning light peeks through the windows, enhancing the shadows within. Looking up, Beldock notes a ghostly figure within the shadows. For a brief moment, the figure waves and departs back to wherever it came. A smile plays on Beldocks face as he remembers his old friend and assassin. With a finely written signature, Beldock concludes his brief notes on the Path of the Dagger*

    Lord Beldock, Cabal of Ether, DT

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:14 AM

    March 13, 2001

    Elvish Council (Trammel)

    To: All those interested:
    When: Sat. March 17 at 4PST.
    Where: Yew Courtroom (Trammel)

    The first meeting of the Elvin council will be at the Yew courtroom. Anyone interested in attending may do so. It will start at 4 PM PST.

    Agenda:

    4:00-4:30= (OOC) Introductions (establish who is who)
    4:30-5:00=(OOC) Discuss ideas for elvish rping
    5:00-5:30=(IC) Discuss setting up the council
    5:30-6:00= (IC) Selecting council members
    6:00-6:30=(IC) Vote for council members
    6:30-7:00=(IC) First official council meeting
    7:00-????= (IC) Darkmor Tower will host reception

    I hope to see all of you there as well as meet many of you. There are no other events scheduled at this time, hopefully in the near future the council will set some up. I thank you for your time.

    Sleath
    Fallen Prince, Son of Joran
    Follower of the True Path

    (If anyone needs to contact me: ICQ 897034)

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 9:12 PM

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.8s

    The following was recently announced on the FYI page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Client Patch 2.0.8s

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.8s. This patch addresses updates changes to the magic item properties display, allows guards to be called using the word guards, and updates localization files.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:49 PM

    OSI: Publish Update - All Remaining Shards

    The following was recently announced on the FYI page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Publish Update - All Remaining Shards

    We will be publishing the changes and fixes listed in Testing for Next Update Testing for Next Update to the all remaining shards to be active following their Wednesday, March 14th (local server time) maintenance period.

    Shards updated with the publish at this time will be:
    • Oceania
    • Formosa
    • Arirang
    • Balhae
    • Yamato
    • Asuka
    • Izumo
    • Wakoku
    • Hokuto
    • Europa
    • Drachenfels
    • Baja
    • Napa Valley
    • Sonoma
    • Pacific
    • Siege Perilous
    While Siege Perilous does not normally maintenance on Wednesdays, it will be brought down for maintenance at approximately 7:00am on March 14th (CST) to accommodate this publish.

    Changes in this publish include:
    • The addition of the Ilshenar land mass
    • Taxidermy kits
    • Hair Stylist NPCs
    • Item Identification changes
    • Good creatures vs. karma
    • Player-owned vendor changes
    • And several additional updates and fixes listed at Testing for Next Update.
    Please note: as this publish contains a major number of changes necessary for Ultima Online: Third Dawn, including the addition of the Ilshenar land mass, the maintenance period for these shards will last approximately 1 hour beyond the normally scheduled downtime.

    Important: While the publish will activate the Ilshenar lands on the East Coast shards, the Ultima Online: Third Dawn client is still in beta testing stages. Please keep this in mind before traveling to Ilshenar with any of your established characters. You will be unable to access the Ilshenar lands without the Third Dawn beta client.

    We will continue to monitor these shards and will announce a schedule for publish to the remaining shards in the near future.

    Posted by Nobody at 4:48 PM

    St. Patrick's Day event

    This Saturday Heaven's Forge will be hosting a St. Patrick's day event.

    The event begins at 6pm pst at Darkmor tavern in HF. We'll then proceed to other player run taverns in a shard-wide pub crawl.

    Before the crawl begins we'll have a Best Dressed Irish outfit contest and a catch the leprechaun contest.

    Anyone from a player run establishment, please contact me to make sure you are on the list of visitation. ICQ 988442.

    Cheers and "Erin go bragh!"

    Darius, Mayor
    ||Faith and Begorrah! (Hm...I need to work on my snappy replies before showing up at these events...!)

    Posted by Nobody at 11:47 AM

    Order Restored

    *The morning rays shine...*
    by Lord Beldock

    *.. within the Tower's Library. All night he read the ancient tomes of old. A sigh of content escapes his lips as he closes the last book. With a silent stride, he wanders down to the foyer, careful not to make to much noise to wake Ivy or Shadomir. More so, not to disturb the dark spirits of the Tower itself.*

    *He wanders to a hidden niche within the Tower itself. A place he discovered long ago, to hide various things from attackers and looters of the Tower."

    *In a black piece of cloth, he removes a guild pin. Not just any guild pin, but his old one. He smiles to himself as he polishes it to its former shine. A unholy light seems to radiate out, pushing back the sunlight streaming in the windows*

    *whispering to himself, he says:*

    "It is time the old order returns. The Cabal is needed once more."

    *With what seems a sigh from the Tower itself, he places the pin on his shirt.*

    *whispering to himself once more*

    "Let it be known, the Dread Lord Beldock returns to his position of Cabal of Ether. The Cabal will be whole once more. The Dark Tower will have its full Cabal..."

    "Ether....."
    "Blade....."
    "Dagger...."
    "Dead......"
    "Darkness.."


    *The Tower walls bleed...*

    Posted by Nobody at 2:09 AM

    March 12, 2001

    GuildBoss Version 1.11 is now available!

    The following announcement was posted to the GuildBoss home page:

    Version 1.11 is now available!

    Note that this was going be part of GB 2 release but I didn't want to hold these fixes up any longer. Don't fret, GB 2 is still in development but it's taking a bit longer than expected (as usual) but what you do expect from a guy with 2 young kids and a full-time job?! :-P

    Grab it here. Here's what's new:
    • Added 'Custom filter...' option to the QuickFilter drop-down on main screen. By selecting this option you can filter your roster by choosing values from your custom Drop-List fields. For instance, for an EverQuest guild you might want to see all your "Human Paladins" or maybe your "Dark Elf Rogues", etc.. You can filter on all four drop-lists.
    • Added count of "highlighted" members in parenthesis next to the count of members in the currently selected rank.
    • Custom drop-list captions (on Member Profile window) now update accordingly when renamed via the Drop-List Manager.
    • Added support for "numeric" sorting in custom User Fields. For instance, if you defined a "Level" column for tracking character level, you can sort the rosters by the values entered in this field. Prior to this release, all custom User Fields were interpreted as TEXT fields and thus did not sort properly with number values.
    • Fixed timeout error when sending a message where the last recipient in the list doesn't have an entry in the profile (i.e. blank email address or ICQ #).
    • Fixed date sorting in roster grid.
    • Fixed "overflow" error in Deeds Journal when member's Deed Tally exceeded 32,767.
    • Fixed "Can't create DAO workspace" error a few folks had encountered, preventing them from running GuildBoss at all.
    • Fixed Cellpadding and Cellspacing on roster reports where they were swapped.
    • Fixed extra "<td" in column header HTML in the General Listing roster report.
    • Fixed "Undefined error [invalid key] populating member property controls!" error when adding a new member to a new blank database. Finally!!
    • Fixed "Undefined error 3061-Too few parameters" when sorting roster by Dues Owed.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:53 PM

    March 11, 2001

    Turbulent Waters Update

    Sea Serpent Loot Unchanged?
    Sea Spawns Greatly Reduced?
    ALL Shipwreck Pillows Dyable?
    Localization Changes?
    Ropes Appearing on Kraken Corpses?
    Beggars Gorge Landing Cut Off?
    Walruses & Various Swamp Beasts No Longer Amphibious?

    Find out about all of the questions above in Turbulent Waters newest update.

    Posted by Thellaren at 7:24 PM

    Best of The Best (Felucca)

    Reminder that tonight (Sunday) is the Best of the Best Tournament (PvP) held by Seer Eliar. It will be at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds in Felucca. Sign ups start at 6pm PST, event begins at 6:30pm PST.

    Posted by Thellaren at 10:31 AM

    Vancouver UO Dinner Meeting

    The following announcement from Saphyria was posted to UOSS:

    Vancouver UO Dinner Meeting

    We're back and we're better and badder than every *grinz*, Come see old friends, and make new ones at the 2nd Annual Ultima Online Player Meet Vancouver! We had so much fun at the last one, we had to do it again! We expect over 50 players from all shards to attend!

    Date: Saturday April 28th, 2001. The event begins at 6:00pm and is expected to end at 11pm.

    The event will be held in the Lounge at Playdium, Metropolis. (The new wing of Metrotown Mall). Playdium is a large scale entertainment centre featuring state-of-the-art interactive computer-based attractions. With elaborate theming and special effects as well as food and beverage facilities and other amenities, Playdium is designed to provide consumers with a total multi-sensory and immersive entertainment experience. All your old favourites plus the amazing virtual reality ones as well! (Sorry!! NO UO!!!) The lounge features a full bar, so bring your ID!

    Tentative Schedule:
    6:00-6:30 Arrivals, Introductions, Drinks, Entries for Door Prize, Administration
    6:30-9:00 Casual Dinner, Raffle of Door Prizes, Mingling
    9:00-11:00 One and a half hours Unlimited Game Play

    At approximately $30/Person, the package includes:

    Unlimited Gourmet Pizza in Pepperoni & Mushroom, Hawaiian, BBQ Chicken, and Vegetarian

    Bottomless Pop and 1.5 hours unlimited play card (This includes the IMAX Ride, and Virtual Reality Games!)

    I will need payment in a few weeks in advance so I can hire Playdium's Lounge to cater it. I still need to confirm with the corporate booker the price (which will depend on the amount of people coming). I will email at a later date the definite price and the due date to make payment.

    I have also emailed OSI so hopefully, they will send us MORE prizes!! I'll email Lum the Mad too.. to see if they'll send us some Lum balls =P (not the ones between his legs.. the squishy ones they were throwing at people at the UO Faire!!)

    If you need anymore information ICQ me at 17035155 or email me back (saphyria@home.com). I will be posting a website SOON. With hotels prices, Transit prices, a map to the venue, and costs. This time.. there is LOTS of parking and we don't have to pay a valet! =P Feel free to ask for ANY information and to make comments. I want to make this event the best it can be and with your help I can make sure I'm not overlooking anything!

    Saphyria aka Ivy

    Posted by Nobody at 1:03 AM

    March 10, 2001

    Cincinnati Area Player Gathering

    The following announcement from Myron Leick was posted to UOSS:

    Cincinnati Area Player Gathering

    COME ONE! COME ALL! You are hereby invited to attend the Second Annual Cincinnati Player's Gathering for Ultima Online.

    This year there will again be much feasting, lots of players from all walks of life to meet, a raffle to give away OSI/EA merchandise, a Q&A session with a member of OSI's house staff, and a special guest appearance by Ian Stormbringer, a.k.a. Todd Pratt from the New York Mets.

    We ask that everyone please RSVP on or before 3/31/2001 so we can provide our location with a solid head count ahead of time and to allow us ample time to receive payment and mail out your invitations.

    For more information, to RSVP, or to register, please contact Myron Leick at mleick@fuse.net and put "UO Luncheon" in your subject line. When registering you must provide your real name, real address, e-mail address, and main character name/main shard so we can contact you.

    Here are the specifics:
    DATE:Saturday, April 21st, 2000
    TIME:6:00pm to 11:00pm
    WHERE:The York Room at the Drawbridge Inn, 2477 Royal Dr., Ft. Mitchell, KY (859) 341-2800. Point your web browser to http://www.drawbridgeinn.com for more information on the Drawbridge Inn or any of a number of local attractions. Discount room rates are available for luncheon attendees. Ample parking is also available in the adjoining parking lot
    MENU INCLUDES:Fresh Fruit
    Tomato and Cucumber Vinaigrette
    Tossed Salad
    Carved Top Round of Beef
    Deli-Sliced Ham, Turkey, Swiss and American Cheeses
    Mostaccioli
    Pineapple Chicken Salad
    Sandwich Setups
    Non-alcoholic beverage of your choice
    COST:$30.00 per person. Prepayment must be received by 4/07/2001. Once we receive your confirmation, we will send you further details on how to make this payment.

    For those of you who are in any of Ultima's volunteer programs we will be holding a small get together on Friday night at a local restaurant/bar with OSI's representative. Friday night's get together is not intended for the general public so in order to attend you must have a signed TOS on file with OSI. This cost is not included in the $30.00 per person for the UO Gathering.

    Also, for those of you that might be interested, we are planning a side outing to a baseball game on Saturday afternoon before the luncheon where we will hope to see Ian Stormbringer in action when the Cincinnati Reds take on the New York Mets. A bus will be available to take us to and from the game leaving from the Drawbridge Inn one hour before the 1:15 pm game time. Cost for this will be $15.00 per person, which covers your ticket to the game as well as transportation to and from the game.

    Event Schedule:
    Friday Night
    8:00pm OSI Volunteer Staff will meet with the OSI representativ for dinner and drinks.

    Saturday Afternoon
    12:30pm Those planning to attend the Reds game meet at the Drawbridge Inn for bus ride to the game

    Saturday Evening
    6:00 pm Player Gathering registration - "Greet and Meet"
    7:00pm Buffet Dinner
    7:45pm Door Prize Drawings
    8:00pm Question & Answer Period with the representative from OSI Make Sure you have 1 or 2 questions to bring to the lunch with you so we can use this time to it's fullest
    10;00pm More Door Prize Drawings
    10:30pm Wrap Up, Socializing, and Grand Prize Drawing
    11:00pm Meeting adjourns. At this point the official event is over and it's time to head home.
    Those of you wishing to continue the festivities may choose to go to the Crossbow Tavern for drinks and stimulating conversation or frequent Jillian's which is about 10 minutes from the Drawbridge in downtown Covington. Jillian's has an arcade, and a number of dance/music clubs depending on your preference.
    Last year's Cincinnati area gathering was a great success, so I highly encourage everyone that can to attend.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:59 AM

    March 9, 2001

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon and more!

    Tryon of ImaNewbie Does Britannia sent out the following announcement:

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Toon and more!

    Hi there :)

    This week's ImaNewbie toon is all about the recent "localization and macros" announcement from OSI stating Players will no longer be able to combine long strings of speech commands to use as a single macro, such as Vendor, tell the guards to buy me the bank.. Also I have added a bunch of new screen pics of monsters I have encountered in UO Third Dawn. I have also added a whole bunch of new terms to the UO/ICQ speak dictionary and there is a new ImaNewbie does "Othergames" review of the hot new 3rd. person anime, kung-fu, shooter - ONI. So there is lot's to see...what are you waiting for?

    Added Friday, March 9th, 2001:
    - ImaNewbie Episode #136 - The more things change...

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 7:03 PM

    OSI: Ultima Online Scheduled Events Conclude

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Ultima Online Scheduled Events Conclude

    We'd like to thank everyone who participated during the last month of our scheduled Ultima Online events. We hope that everyone enjoyed the events!

    We will be taking the time to assess running scheduled events of this type, and to that end, we will be keeping the Event message board open for a few more weeks to allow you to share your feedback with us. The message board is located at http://boards.uo.com/cgi-bin/postlist.pl?Cat=&Board=Events. (A registered UO Message Board account is required to post feedback.)

    Once again, our thanks to everyone who participated in these event nights

    Posted by Nobody at 6:39 PM

    OSI: Magic Weapon and Armor Identification

    The following was just posted to In Development on the UO.com website:

    Magic Weapon and Armor Identification

    Magic weapons and armor will display descriptions in brackets once the item is identified, instead of the current numerical values. For example, if you identified an indestructible surpassingly accurate broadsword of force, the system would display it as:
    magic broadsword
    [indestructible / force / surpassingly accurate]
    Before the weapon is identified, the descriptions will be replaced with the word "unidentified"
    magic broadsword
    [unidentified]
    The identification information will appear under the weapon/armor name when the item is single clicked.

    More information and exact details on this system will be released in the
    near future.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:38 PM

    Golden's Great Date Auction

    THE GREAT DATE AUCTION

    Proceeds to benefit the fund for renovating the Golden Globe Theatre


    Date: Friday, March 16, 2001
    Time: 7:30 pm PST
    Location: The Golden Globe Theatre, Town of Golden, Trammel Facet, Baja Shard
    Why: The Golden Globe Theatre is planning to renovate in the near future, adding a stage and other features that will make it even better as a location for our theatrical productions and events. Your support and donations will help us to achieve our goals, and everyone will benefit!
    How: Easy! Come to the Golden Globe Theatre and bid on one of many "Dates". The persons who have volunteered to be auctioned are all your friends and many are well-known figures within their communities and other communities, and many have been in the world of Baja for a long time! Watch this spot for the final listing of who will be auctioned!

    Once you have chosen the person you'd like to bid on, simply place your bids that night! If yours is the highest bid (donation), you are the lucky winner of that person's company for the evening at the party to follow the auction, or at a future date on a day and time the two of you agree upon.

    That's all there is to it! Hope we see you there! Your support will help us to make the Golden Globe an even more enjoyable resource for everyone.

    Posted by Ursula at 9:30 AM

    March 8, 2001

    63rd UOHoC Open House chat log posted

    The Ultima Online House of Commons announced that the complete log of the sixty-third UOHoC Open House chat has been posted. The topic was "Ultima Online: Third Dawn".

    Aside from questions & answers about bugs and related issues, there were a few things that were addressed regarding how play goes on in Ilshenar that caught my eye, such as:

    • Prescient-[Stratics] - *Tristam* How similar will the ruleset in Ilshner be to the rule set in Trammel in reguards to PvP? Will it be consent only, or will members of the interest team be allowed to make "ber-monsters" there?
      Calandryll - With regards to seers and monsters, we'll probably have the same rules as we have for Trammel since PvP there is consent only.
      Calandryll - Which means seers wont be playing monsters in Ilshenar

    • Prescient-[Stratics] - *Zophar* actually my question is will there be large areas of land for sailing in the new world
      Runesabre - There will not be any boats allowed in Ilshenar.

    • Prescient-[Stratics] - *Lord-Xanthor_CV* When it was stated last UOHOC about not being able to recall or gate in the new lands. Is this refering to going back and forth to the other facets or will people be able to mark in the new lands and be able to recall or gate to spots in the new lands once they are there?
      FierYiCe - You will not be able to mark, recall, or gate in the new lands.

    • Prescient-[Stratics] - *[E]psycho* hello...Will there be a way to upgrade more than one account so you dont have to buy several Third dawn pacatches?
      Calandryll - Even if you have multiple accounts, you'll only need one Third Dawn CD.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:52 PM

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.8q

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Client Patch 2.0.8q

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.8q. This patch addresses a crashing issue.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:37 PM

    March 7, 2001

    OSI: Extended Downtime Account Management

    Gone Gold has reported that Ultima Online: Third Dawn has "gone gold," as detailed below and original published here:

    Ultima Online: Third Dawn

    Super News!

    Hi Rich,

    Just a heads up that UO: Third Dawn has gone gold and will be shipping to retailers on March 27. Let me know if you have any other questions. Web site is http://www.uo3d.com.

    David Swofford
    Director of Communications
    ORIGIN Systems
    Here's some specifics...
    The Internet-only fantasy world of Britannia takes on a new dimension in Ultima Online: Third Dawn. Now UO is more immersive than ever with fully animated, motion-captured 3-D characters, each with enhanced gesturing and animations. Third Dawn has hundreds of motion-captured animations on nearly 200 different character models. A 3-D terrain system, new beasts and monsters, a new land to explore, a new particle system for spell and magic effects and improved music make Ultima Online look and sound better than ever before.

    Key Features

    A new dimension for Characters and Special Effects
    • 3-D models for all characters and monsters
    • Motion-captured animations
    • Enhanced gesturing and animation
    • Particle system for magic and special effects
    New lands, monsters, weapons and armor

    Third Dawn adds an additional landmass that presents even greater challenges and rewards for UO players. Third Dawn also adds new monsters to the UO landscape and for combat, players can try out new weapons and armor, some of which feature an Oriental/samurai look and feel.

    Improved music

    Now Ultima Online sounds better than ever with improved music. Explore the world of Britannia now and hear the difference.
    UOSS pointed out the following additional comments from Calandryll about UO3D going old:
    Calandryll Comments on UO3D Going Gold

    Calandryll made the following two comments on Lum the Mad about UO3D going gold:
    The UO Third Dawn beta test is not over...we are continuing to take feedback and patch in fixes.
    and post #2:
    Actually, UO Third Dawn does include the 2d client as well.

    As far as the release date, that is accurate. I just wanted to make sure people knew that going gold doesn't mean the beta is over and that testing/patching is done. It's not.

    -Calandryll
    Manager of Community Services,
    Ultima Online and ORIGIN

    Posted by Nobody at 8:45 PM

    OSI: Extended Downtime Account Management

    The following announcements were posted to the Common Issues page at the Ultima Online Web site:

    Extended Downtime Account Management

    The Ultima Online Account Management database and website will undergo extensive maintenance on Thursday, March 8th beginning at approximately 12:01 AM CST. This maintenance is expected to require approximately 10 hours of downtime - during which accounts may not be created, re-activated, updated, or canceled by any method.

    We urge that players update their billing and account information via the Ultima Online Registration website located at http://www.ultima-registration.com before this period to avoid losing playtime should any billing complications arise while the system is unavailable.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:20 PM

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.8p

    The following announcements were posted to the FYI page at the Ultima Online Web site:

    Client Patch 2.0.8p

    We are targeting to release client patch 2.0.8p this evening. This patch contains additional localization files and updates to item identification.

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the Patch directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at href="http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html">http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:19 PM

    OSI: Baja Shard Issues

    Looks like Baja's had a bad day. The following announcements were posted to the Shard Issues page at the Ultima Online Web site, listed from oldest to most recent:

    Baja Shard Mar 7 2001 9:33AM

    The maintenance for the Baja shard is taking longer than expected. We apologize for the delay and expect the shard to be available again in approximately 1.5 hours.

    Baja Shard Mar 7 2001 10:15AM CST (GMT -06:00)

    The maintenance for the Baja shard is now over and the shard is now available. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. Thank you for your patience in this matter.

    Baja Shard Mar 7 2001 10:20AM CST (GMT -06:00)

    Due to server problems, the Baja Shard is currently unavailable. We are currently working to resolve this issue and expect the shard to be available in approximately 1.5 hours.

    Baja Shard Mar 7 2001 10:52AM CST (GMT -06:00)

    The Baja shard returned to service and is now available. We apologize for the inconvenience this interruption may have caused.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:17 PM

    March 6, 2001

    OSI: Various Fixes and Changes

    The following was just posted to Testing for Next Update on the UO.com website:

    Various Fixes and Changes

    These fixes will be active on the Chesapeake shard following its Wednesday, March 7th maintenance period and will be included with publish to all remaining shards.
    • Fixed an issue with faction score loss.
    • Fixed an issue with housing sign text color.
    • Fixed an issue causing locked down trees to leave ornaments behind when automatically re-deeded.
    • Fixed an issue where pets could not be claimed by name from stables.
    • Re-enabled the "gold" command to allow players to collect gold from vendors.
    • Fixed an issue causing some exceptional items to lose the last letter in their name.
    • Fixed pricing for taxidermy kits and flipflop tool.
    • Fixed numerous error null strings.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:46 PM

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.8o

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Client Patch 2.0.8o

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.8o. This patch updates several localization files, fixes an issue with speech commands and vendors, and removes the ninth circle "bad spell" page from spellbooks.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:45 PM

    OSI: Publish Update, East Coast Shards

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Publish Update, East Coast Shards

    We will be publishing the changes and fixes listed in Testing for Next Update to the all US East Coast shards to be active following their Wednesday, March 7th (local server time) maintenance period. Shards updated with the publish at this time will be:
    • Atlantic
    • AOL Legends
    • Catskills
    • Great Lakes
    • Lake Superior
    • Siege Perilous
    Changes in this publish include:
    • The addition of the Ilshenar land mass
    • Taxidermy kits
    • Hair Stylist NPCs
    • Item Identification changes
    • Good creatures vs. karma
    • Player-owned vendor changes
    • And several additional updates and fixes listed at
      http://update.uo.com/next.hmtl.
    Please note: as this publish contains a major number of changes necessary for Ultima Online: Third Dawn, including the addition of the Ilshenar land mass, the maintenance period for these shards will last approximately 1 hour beyond the normally scheduled downtime.

    Important: While the publish will activate the Ilshenar lands on the East Coast shards, the Ultima Online: Third Dawn client is still in beta testing stages. Please keep this in mind before traveling to Ilshenar with any of your established characters. You will be unable to access the Ilshenar lands without the Third Dawn beta client.

    We will continue to monitor these shards and will announce a schedule for publish to the remaining shards in the near future.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:43 PM

    Khaldun Puzzle Chests - the continuing story of

    The following was posted to UOSS:

    Khaldun Puzzle Chests - the continuing story of

    As a result of various tips from readers we've been able to update the Khaldun and Puzzle Chest pages yet again. Most important news is that there are no less than 6 known places where puzzle chests are located, and that having a high lockpicking skill really offers a big help with these puzzle chests.

    Thanks to all who submitted tips and information!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:19 PM

    OSI: Localization and Ultima Online

    The following was just posted to What's New on the UO.com website:

    Localization and Ultima Online

    As Ultima Online moves closer to the official release of Third Dawn, many players may have noticed the word "localization" popping up everywhere lately. From client patches with localization files to changes in the way shopkeepers react and items are displayed, localization has had and will have a significant effect on the appearance of Ultima Online to players around the world.

    So what is localization? Simply put, it's creating a game that is as easily accessible for our customers around the world as it is for our English-speaking players. As one of the first massively multiplayer games to actively embrace a global audience, we've been working on this for a while now; and you can see evidence throughout Ultima Online Renaissance and the UO community. Within the game, certain parts of the client have already been translated to our five official languages: Japanese, Korean, Traditional Chinese, French, and German. Outside the game, we have a full Japanese website mirroring www.uo.com, as well as fully translated New Player Center, and soon-to-come translated versions of our PlayGuide documentation.

    However, with the release of Ultima Online: Third Dawn, we're greatly increasing the amount of in-game localization. In addition to completing the localization of all of the in-game menus such as the paperdoll, the options menu, shopkeeper menus, etc. non-English speaking players will at last be able to fully interact textually within the game in their own language. For example, currently on shards that have not received the latest publish, players must say the English word "bank" in English to open their bank-box. To non-English speaking players, this means memorizing a list of words and commands that in many cases make no sense whatsoever. It would be similar to asking a native English speaker to remember the words "Je voudrais poser une poubelle" for use in placing a trash barrel inside their house. It isn't easy, it isn't fun, and it accounted for roughly 60% of the phrases necessary to play the game making it something we absolutely needed to change.

    Of course, this update would be easier if Ultima Online had been designed as a multi-language game in the first place it wasn't. We simply didn't anticipate the global appeal of the Ultima Online world, and thus it was designed to rely on textual commands. Certain words and phrases that have been added to the game over the last few years simply don't translate well to one or more of our official languages simply because of the way that languages work. Some languages use different grammatical structures from English, others require nouns to have masculine or feminine genders, and some such as kanji, the Japanese system of writing used in Ultima Online, simply describe concepts in ways completely different than English. To provide for these language differences, we've had to change the way some NPCs respond to text commands, or changed the way that certain items appear textually because there is no equivalent translation available.

    We are pleased to have created a game that has appealed to players from different countries and vastly different cultures around the world. It is our hope that with these changes, Ultima Online: Third Dawn will continue to foster and support a global community and allow all our players to enjoy their time in the world of Britannia.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:16 PM

    March 5, 2001

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.8n

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Client Patch 2.0.8n

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.8n. This patch updates several localization files, fixes an issue with speech commands, and resolves issues relating to clothing and sitting.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:55 PM

    Mardi Gras Party

    The following was posted by Ursula to the Golden Brew message board, here:

    Mardi Gras Party

    Thank you to everyone who helped me at the party last night. What we did get in was a blast! Unfortunately we didn't get to finish, and because of other events scheduled, we won't be able to reschedule. We always have next year!

    Congratulations to Ceasar and Hans Frans, the winners of our Panty Raid. Here are a couple paintings I took.
    Kita leads the Conga Line
    Kita leads the Conga Line
    Petrus counts the panties
    Petrus counts the panties
    Miranda posted some additional pictures here, including pictures of their parade and a shot of the Golden Globe roof.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:41 PM

    The Last Man Standing Event

    I read the following article at UOSS:

    The Last Man Standing Event

    The Last Man Standing Event was watched tonight by crowds from all over Brittania. The Abomination and it's guardian made another appearance along with ice fiends, ice wyrms, snow elementals, poison elementals, lich lords, chickens, mongbats and other fearsome beasts!

    Of the many valiant combatants in the event the sole survivor was gandelf who won a silk sash embellished with the words "to gandelf, the last man standing" 10,000 gold, a bag of regeants, a treasure map and a fireworks wand. The two runners up were Lord Dragon Spirit, second place, and Lord Washburn third place.
    The Last Man Standing contest is a Seer-sponsored player-versus-monster (PvM) tournament. It takes place in the Skara Brae Fairegrounds in Trammel located on the mainland several screen northeast from the Skara Brae docks, in what will appear on your radar-screen map as farmlands.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:29 PM

    OSI: Account Management Update

    The following two items were posted to the Common Issues page at the Ultima Online Web site:

    Account Management Downtime
    Mar 5 2001 10:09AM CST (GMT -06:00)

    The Ultima Online Account Management database and website is currently undergoing extensive maintenance. This maintenance is expected to require approximately 8 hours of downtime starting at 9:00 AM CST - during which accounts may not be created, re-activated, updated, or canceled by any method.

    Account Management Update
    Mar 5 2001 5:50PM CST (GMT -06:00)

    The Ultima Online Account Management database and website is currently undergoing extensive maintenance and is expected to be available again at approximately 9:00 PM CST. Until the database returns to service, accounts may not be created, re-activated, updated, or canceled by any method. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:20 PM

    OSI: Test Great Lakes and Test Pacific and Client Patch 2.0.8m

    The following two items were just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Test Great Lakes and Test Pacific

    We have opened a Test Great Lakes and a Test Pacific shard with recent backups of these shards updated with all of the items listed in Testing for Next Update. We urge that regular players of both of these shards, and any other interested players stop by and join in the testing.

    Please note: while the Ilshenar lands are active on these shards, the Ultima Online: Third Dawn client is still in beta testing stages. You will be unable to access these lands without the Third Dawn beta client.

    Client Patch 2.0.8m

    We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.8m. This patch fixes an issue with unicode text handling for Windows 95 users, and a fix for partial hueing of certain clothing items.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html.
    • Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:10 AM

    March 4, 2001

    Last Man Standing Contest Tonight!

    Seer Eliar asked me to spread the word that because of problems last week and the cancellation of the Last Man Standing Contest, it will be held tonight (Sunday) at 6pm PST at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds, Trammel.

    She has hinted that there are some changes, so if you plan on participating it's probably a good idea to go early.

    Posted by Brenstar at 11:44 AM

    March 3, 2001

    TOL/MT Tournament Posponed until March 10 / 2001

    The Baja Mage Tower recently made the following announcement:

    TOL/MT Tournament Posponed until March 10 / 2001

    Due To Horrendous Connection Problems for the Baja Shard we are forced to pospone the TOL / MT Tournament until March 10 / 2001.

    We would like to thank all those that showed up, got disconnected over and over again during our attempt to have this event on Sat.

    We will see you on March 10!

    Take Care

    Nekkar and Nitram

    Posted by Nobody at 11:47 AM

    March 2, 2001

    Nobles of Britannia Open Inn and Forge Alliances

    The following announcement from Sir Midian was posted at Stratics:

    Nobles of Britannia Open Inn and Forge Alliances

    Hail and Well Met!

    We of the Brotherhood of Valor are proud to announce that two strong and virtuous guilds have merged under one stone. The Paladins of Justice and Brotherhood of Valor now form one of the strongest veteran member guilds in all of the lands. Our new name is the Nobles of Britannia. By bringing our members together we can help one another accomplish our goals. One of our main goals is to form alliances with other strong virtuous guilds. If you feel your guild would be interested in entering an alliance please send a carrier pigeon to the address listed below. Also if you find yourself in trouble or needing assistance and see someone with the initials N^B please do not hesitate to ask we will be more than happy to help.

    I would like to add that we have opened an Inn North of Trinsic along the coast. It's called the Noble Inn, and all are welcome to fill up on food and wine brought down straight from Yew. We also have pet food available for the weary traveler. The coordinates to the Inn are located on the site Nobles of Brittania, so please stop by when you get a chance. We look forward to seeing you.

    Fare thee well

    Sir Midian,
    Grand Noble and Tiberian Knight

    Posted by Nobody at 7:57 PM

    OSI: FAQs on Miniature Statues from Melantus

    Melantus posted the following announcement/FAQ about statues yesterday to the Ultima Online e-mail list from Yahoo Groups:

    Miniature Statues

    As many of you know and have been discussing on the UO boards, one of the main topics of discussion the past day or so has been miniature statues. Player feedback has been and is very important to us, as we have said before. We are adding additional changes to UO that are part of this overall topic of miniature statues. The miniature statues will be added to pixies, in the methods listed below. A large majority of the statues that were obtained by players already cannot be removed from their containers. They are also heavy, thus even ones that could be removed from a container would be unmoveable by players. Gamemasters will neither remove them from a container for the player, nor will they move them for ones players have on the ground. Please read the information below regarding the addition of statues will be able to obtain.

    FAQ

    Q: Will the statues from pixies be any different than the ones that spawned in crates?
    A: The only difference will be that the statues from pixies weigh less, meaning you will be able to move them around, unlike the statues from the crates. They will need to be locked down as well. Overall, these statues are better than the ones from crates since they can more easily be moved and traded.

    Q: Why not make them craftable?
    A: Adding a new craftable is actually fairly significant. It requires far more design, coding, and testing than putting new loot on a monster. Given the nature of this issue and the community's reaction, we felt it best to introduce these items into the world as quickly as possible, while at the same time, keeping finding them interesting and fun. Also, while pixies do hit hard, they are not terribly difficult to kill for most veteran characters...although you do need to be careful if a few of them attack you at once. ;)

    Q: Why didn't you delete the statues?
    A: Deleting the statues is certainly a possible solution and one we considered. However, given the fact that these statues may have been bought by players who did not know they were the result of a bug, we felt it was better to simply make the item available to all players. This way, everyone has a chance to get a statue. Also, these items do not negatively affect game-play or generate service calls.

    Q: Does that mean those who have the Third Dawn client will get statues first?
    A: Probably. These items will appear on pixie corpses about as often as the other new items like deamon bone armor or glacial staves. However, there are plenty more pixies spawning in Ilshenar than the monsters needed to get those items. It shouldn't take long before there are plenty of statues for sale and trade. Also, it is important to note that you will not need Third Dawn to use or see the statues, the art for the statues exists on the 2d client.

    Q: Isn't this inconsistent policy? Why not delete the statues?
    A: Actually, in the past we have put items into the game that were originally the result of a bug. Black dye-tubs and blessed runebooks are good examples of this. Sometimes, if an item does not cause any service or gameplay issues, and it is something the community desires, it is far better to give the community an opportunity to obtain the items, rather than take them away from everyone. Each case is different, but we believe this is one of those cases.

    Q: What about the other items like standing armor and tarot cards?
    A: The vast majority of the items were statues. While we may or may not add new items such as those to the world again, right now, we are concentrating on the statues. At this time, we have no specific plans to add any other new items.

    Q: Won't I lose karma if I kill pixies?
    A: Yes, you will. However, if reputation is important to you, you can still buy the statues from other players. Again, the statues will appear as loot on pixies and since there are a good number of them spawning, it shouldn't be long before there are plenty to go around.

    Q: If I have a statue from a crate that I cannot move, can I call a GM to get it moved?
    A: No. GMs will not move or delete these statues. Please do not call a GM regarding these items.


    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    It's also been pointed out that statues are spawning on the Ratmen Mages on the test shards, and Melantus spoke out again on that same e-mail list:
    Statues Now On Ratman Magi

    You're going to be seeing some interesting things occur with spawn very soon. I'll be sure to mention this to others, as far as the ratmen mages and where they spawn. We wouldn't want there to be a bottleneck of players trying to kill them if they only spawned in one small area.

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online

    Posted by Nobody at 7:42 PM

    OSI: Publish Update, Chesapeake Shard

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Publish Update, Chesapeake Shard

    We will be publishing the changes and fixes listed in Testing for Next Update to the Chesapeake shard to be active following its Sunday, March 4th (local server time) maintenance period. Changes in this publish include:
    • The addition of the Ilshenar land mass
    • Taxidermy kits
    • Hair Stylist NPCs
    • Item Identification changes
    • Good creatures vs. karma
    • Player-owned vendor changes
    • And several additional updates and fixes listed at
      http://update.uo.com/next.hmtl.
    Please note: as this publish includes a major number of changes necessary for Ultima Online: Third Dawn, including the addition of the Ilshenar land mass, the Chesapeake shard maintenance period will last approximately 6 hours on Sunday.

    Important: While the publish will activate the Ilshenar lands on the Chesapeake shard, the Ultima Online: Third Dawn client is still in beta testing stages. Please keep this in mind before traveling to Ilshenar with any of your established characters. You will be unable to access the Ilshenar lands without the Third Dawn beta client.

    We will be opening a Test Chesapeake shard later this evening for those players wishing to test the publish changes on a backup version of the Chesapeake shard. We urge Chesapeake players, as well as other interested players, to drop by and join in the testing.

    We will monitor the Chesapeake shard over the remainder of the weekend, and barring any issues, will announce a publish schedule for the remaining shards next week.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:46 PM

    Mardi Gras Party Reminder

    Just a reminder of the Mardi Gras Party Saturday night (March 3rd) in Golden at the Golden Globe Theater. A parade starts at 6pm PST and will travel through a few towns.

    Other events planned are:

    *Best Mardi Gras Costume: Prize 10,000 gold
    *Panty Raid: Prize Glacial Staff and GM set of GM leather armor (Thanks to Jeoram of S*S).
    *Float Making Contest: You bring the items and your imagination to build a float! We will be using the land around the theater, so you will have enough room to set up your masterpiece.
    Third Place: 5,000 gold
    Second Place: 10,000 gold
    Third Place: 15,000 gold

    Also lots of food, drink, dancing and fun with friends!

    Posted by Nobody at 9:51 AM

    St. Patricks Day

    This bit of news was posted to the Heaven's Forge Page:

    Hear ye, hear ye!

    The town of Heaven's Forge will be sponsoring a St. Patrick's Day event on the 17th of March, beginning at 6pm pst.

    The festivities will include a Best Dressed Irish outfit contest, a catch the leprechaun contest and a pub crawl to all of the player run pubs.

    Festivities will begin at Darkmor tavern (see map on HF website http://heavensforge.tripod.com)

    Any player towns with a pub, please contact me, Darius (ICQ 988442), to make sure that we'll visit your establishment.

    I look forward to seeing you there.

    Cheers!

    Darius, Mayor of Heaven's Forge

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:44 AM

    Gilforn

    The following was reported yesterday to BNN World News:

    Amidst piles of books, faintly scented by mildew and strange concoctions, Gilforn sat confounded by his lack of success. Idly spinning a mandrake root, he stood looking at the empty space where a facet gate had been. At first he thought he had finally done it. He could see Felucca within the dim purple glow of the gate. He flipped over an hourglass and waited. Right on time it closed and all that was left was nothingness. Offering a sigh and a curse to the Virtues, he turned and began his research anew. He would create a permanent facet gate or else waste away trying.

    Gilforn was the foremost authority on Gate travel and teleportation spells in the land. He had written many works including "The Definitive Gate" and "Gate Travel and the Modern World". He was most notably known for his achievement with local teleporters. The Moonglow town teleporters and the similar ones found in J'helom had baffled most modern mages for some time. Gilforn was able to find out how they were crafted and duplicated them. You can see some of his handiwork in the mage shop in Moonglow. The ill-conceived design of that building required some teleporters to ease the flow of shoppers. Also many other congested areas around the realm had called upon Gilforn to implement similar local teleporters to make the common mans travels a bit easier.

    Still, even with that accomplished, the discovery of facets and the accompanying facet gates fascinated Gilforn. It was a fairly simple thing to open a gate and step through to the apothecary down the road, but to be able to step through a gate to another world? The only other instance of this was the now almost fabled Siege Perilous gate that brought the stranger to Sosaria to defeat Mondain. Gilforn had petitioned Nystul endlessly for the books regarding that gates creation. Finally Nystul came to see Gilforn personally, to assure him that any record of the methods employed to create that gate was not to be found. Gilforn had publicly stated he believed Nystul to not be telling the whole truth of that matter. However, the facets gates were truly real and required no skill in magic to employ - only a single 'moonstone'. The stone, once placed on the ground, simply buries itself and a facet gate is created to the exact location on the opposite facet. These moonstones began to appear once Minax had arrived in Britannia. It would seem she came from her own facet and her entry into our facet some how spawned the creation of these objects. The horrid-smelling little headless creatures seem to collect these moonstones as some sort of status symbol, or so it has been speculated.

    Gilforn had been studying the old texts on the creation of the local Moongates. They were permanent; their destination shifting with the phases of the twin moons that orbited Sosaria. He had tried every conceivable combination of Moongate magicks and Moonstones he could muster and still he could not open a permanent gate. In fact he had injured himself in one attempt in which the gate opened and exploded in a burst of energy.

    He began to open his texts again when he realized the lateness of the hour. Instead of continuing his studies, he headed to bed for a much needed rest. He quickly succumbed to sleep and began to dream.

    A clear night with a crisp wind blew across Gilforn's face. It was the Moonglow town center. The stars shone brightly only to be outshone by the twin full moons. A wisp appeared and seemingly beckoned Gilforn forward. He followed. South through the metal gates down the road to the Moongate he followed the glowing Wisp. Then, quite suddenly, it was gone. The gate was somehow different looking. It pulsed with a different glow. One unlike any he had seen before. Almost unnoticed, darkness crept in all around and a chorus of voices spoke.

    "you have worked hard friend. your efforts will not be in vain. look upon the gate and see..."

    The wind whipped harder as Gilforn starred into the swirling gate.

    "Who are you and why do you disrupt my dreams with this strange vision?"

    "we are wise. we seek to help."

    "see what you have not seen. find what you seek. we offer it freely."

    This stirred Gilforn from his gaze. Being ever the cynic, he responded, "Nothing is free. With what cost does this knowledge come, spirit?"

    "no cost to you, friend. no cost to you at all. look upon the gate and learn."

    His eyes slowly returned their gaze to the strange gate swirling before him. Familiar symbols in bizarre combinations spun and twisted in before his eyes.

    "It is so clear. It is so simple. It is wonderful."

    "we are glad. now step through the gate"

    Gilforn stepped forward and entered the gate.

    He awoke violently. Shaking and covered in sweat, it took him several moments to compose himself. It was still dark, in the dead of the night. He was dreaming...a wisp..a gate...the gate! He leapt from his bed and hurried to his lab.

    His mind was ablaze with symbols and arcane words of magic. Hastily he grabbed at spell components from every corner of the room. A mild sort of madness had taken over. As he finished compiling his spell components he began to chant words he had never heard before, in a meter that was almost poetic.

    "init kal vas gres
    trak sek-de ter-mer..
    re in ew tu-tim in-ten
    re grav beh
    i trak-por "


    At first nothing happened. Then in a flash the spell components burst into a spike of energy illuminating the room, and the moonstone he had placed in the center of the other components sank into the ground. Half-blinded from the flash, Gilforn watched as a swirling gate appeared from the ground. It had the same strangeness about as the gate in his dream. He turned the hourglass.

    Slowly he peered into the gate. He could not see what was beyond it. He waited. The sand dropped bit by bit at an almost maddeningly slow pace. He paced, always glancing back at the hourglass. Finally the time had come for the gate to close. He stood bewildered. I was still open! He paced frantically, waiting. Could it be? Another hour passed and the gate still remained. It would seem that this gate was indeed going to remain. Now came the true test. What happened upon walking through it? The other side could not be seen. This gate was murky. He paced some more. It was almost dawn. Should he wait and inform the Council of his discovery? He almost gave in to that thought, but his desire to know if it really worked drove him to step through gate.

    There was no sensation. It was like any other gate he had ever taken in his lifetime. He appeared on the other side. He felt fine, but something was terribly wrong. This was not Felucca.

    He stood next to a ruined stone structure. At first he did not notice, but then it became very obvious. An ankh! Amidst the rubble was a large standing ankh. In front of it, buried under some debris, rested, to his unbelieving eyes, a Virtue Sigil. The scales : the Sigil of Justice. This was the Shrine of Justice? This looked nothing like the Shrine of Justice he knew. This was amazing. He was overcome with excitement. Briefly, he realized that his gate might not remain forever. He turned and looked into the gate. He looked all around. He longed to explore but realized this was something he should report directly to the Council of Mages. With a tinge of regret he walked back through the gate and was back in his lab. The gate remained. It was near dawn as he gathered himself and headed off to awaken Anon and speak of his grand discovery.

    In the blackest part of the Void, three figures grinned darkly. It had begun.

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:15 AM

    March 1, 2001

    OSI: Localization and Macros

    The following was just posted to "In Testing for Next Update" on the UO.com
    website
    :

    Localization and Macros

    With the update of localized language support for Ultima Online: Third Dawn, the way in which speech commands work, will affect the use of certain macros. Players will no longer be able to combine long strings of speech commands to use as a single macro, such as "Vendor, tell the guards to buy me the bank." Macros using combined speech commands may not work in all cases. To use speech commands effectively, they should be limited to the appropriate command (such as "bank" when standing inside a bank or "vendor buy" when purchasing from a vendor.)

    Posted by Brenstar at 7:18 PM

    The Guard: Millennium Knighthood now Recruiting

    Hear Ye' Hear Ye'

    Greetings all, young and old. For I am King James Jr. of The Guard: Millenium Knighthood. I am here to announce that The Guard is now recruiting new members.

    The Guard: Millenium Knighthood, is a Semi-Roleplaying Guild, with young blood in our veins. We are located off the coast of Trinsic and expand through Britannia. We are recruiting old to young, Man to child. We offer training courses and days of long battles. If you are interested Please don't hesitate.

    For more information
    ICQ me at 5966643

    Farewell
    King James II.

    Posted by Brenstar at 4:53 PM

    February 27, 2001

    OSI: Exploiting in Ultima Online

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Exploiting in Ultima Online

    Please remember that exploiting bugs or using unapproved third party programs in Ultima Online can result in the permanent suspension of your Ultima Online account. A list of approved third party applications can be found here. Using any exploit or third party application not on this list is a violation of the Rules of Conduct.

    We are committed to removing those players that choose to exploit Ultima Online and will continue to work towards maintaining an enjoyable and level playing experience for all of our players.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:10 PM

    February 26, 2001

    Avalon Naval Operations Merchandise Now Available

    Avalon Naval Operations Merchandise Now Available

    The Avalon Naval Operations defends the shores of Avalon: City of Destiny, a player community on the Felucca facet of Ultima Online's Baja Shard. The ANO combines an official fleet, merchant vessels, and conscripted private shipseach of them full of Avalonians proud to serve & protect their home.

    The City of Destiny is now proud to announce that you can share in the honor of supporting Avalon's fleet by owning your own ANO t-shirt, sweatshirt, baby-doll T, or 11oz. mug, now available at www.cafepress.com/avalonano/.

    This new design joins the original "Avalon: City of Destiny" products, still available at http://www.cafepress.com/avaloncod/.

    Read more about Avalon at www.avaloncity.org, or e-mail questions & comments to ministers@avaloncity.org.

    Posted by Brenstar at 3:45 PM

    LAST MAN STANDING Canceled For Tonight

    Simon Pilgrim called out the following announcement over near the Golden Brew, here, about the weekly PvP Tournament at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds:

    LAST MAN STANDING Canceled For Tonight

    I was just gimping along to the fairgrounds. Through the loses of connections [Seer] Eliar told me that it is canceled.

    Sorry guys

    Posted by Nobody at 11:24 AM

    February 25, 2001

    OSI: West Coast Servers

    The following was posted to the Shard Issues page of the Ultima OnlineWeb site:

    West Coast Servers

    We are still experiencing connectivity issues to the West Coast Servers. We are working to resolve this issue as soon as possible. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:29 PM

    OSI: Account Management Issues

    The following was posted to the Common Issues page of the Ultima OnlineWeb site:

    Account Management Issues

    We are currently experiencing issues with our account database. Any changes made to accounts online may take an hour or two to update. We assure you that we are working diligently to correct this problem. Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause you.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:28 PM

    Dawn Museum Reviewed by Markee Dragon

    The Kingdom of Dawn's Museum of Dreams (located on Felucca) was recently reviewed by Shahrressa of Atlantic at www.markeedragon.com. The original article is here, and it's formatted so you can leave comments with the article. She also have some screenshots of her visit, located here, as mentioned in her article. The entire article is reproduced below.

    Visit the Dawn Museum of Dreams (Baja)

    Heyla, everyone!

    Shahrressa here, reporting for MarkeeDragon.com. Shogun and I had the pleasure this week of visiting the Kingdom of Dawn on the Baja Shard. Vengence, Curator of the Dawn Museum of Dreams, was kind enough to show us around the newly remodeled Tower.

    The Kingdom of Dawn itself is enormous, spanning the entire coast east of the dungeon Wrong on the Felucca facet. We were hopelessly lost until a kind soul named Silverwolf, Marshal of the 8th Armored Calvary cast us a gate and turned us in the right direction (Thanks again, Silverwolf!). Upon our arrival at the Kingdom of Dawn and the Dawn Museum of Dreams, Vengence immediately welcomed us with open arms. All around us were players enjoying each others company, and participating in the joyful festivities.

    Our host, Vengence, was a kind and patient man, and very excited indeed about his work. We found him to be quite knowledgeable indeed and a wealth of information on the rare and unique items on display, which he knew by heart. Vengence has a dream that is shared by others scattered throughout Britannia. However, the dream is beginning to be realized in the Kingdom of Dawn on the Baja shard. In interviewing Vengence for a time, while listening to the tranquil sounds of the fountain monument, he expressed to us his desire, to provide a place for players throughout the Ultima Online community to come, see, share in, and learn about not only rares themselves but their history. Vengence is, and has been making an active contribution to the community in the selfless hope, that youll be able to come, and enjoy.

    Located near the Dungeon Wrong on the Baja shard, Dawn's newest museum needed over a year to amass and arrange the hundreds of items on display. Many of the items were generously donated by citizens of Britannia, who wished to see them preserved and displayed with care. The tower itself is very graphically intensive, with over 2,000 lockdowns, so be patient when you visit!

    Upon entering, you are greeted by a friendly but quiet GM, who guards a treasure room that contains a magnitude of wealth the likes of which we have never seen! A guidebook to the Museum tells us that it is the Wealth of the Implementers, but little is known about this ancient race of people.

    Traveling up the stone stairs, you witness the most amazing sight - the Ethereal Room. See what it feels like to travel within the ether itself. You have to experience it to believe it! This room is a mages' study, and contains books and other magical items not seen in Britannia for many a year and more.

    The third floor of the Museum contains a kitchen that would delight even the most experienced of chefs. Containing foods from around the world, with the items used to cook them, the Kitchen is a tempting, tasty treat.

    A friendly, silent fellow named Grim guards the roof area, which is divided into several sections. An armory/workshop area displays tools used past and present, along with several different types of metals, some of which are no longer found in Britannia. An Aquarium displays several different species of fish, and a slaughterhouse stands ominous beneath its black cloth canopy.

    The center of the roof spotlights a beautiful fountain, with foaming water streaming down a rock guardian. We were lulled by its tranquil, peaceful music.

    To view some screenshots of this wonderous tower, click HERE

    Thank you again to Vengence for a lovely tour. We hope to visit Dawn again and see more of this extensive Kingdom!
    Shahrressa
    Roving Reporter

    A note from Shogun, Shattered Crystal Community Coordinator

    The Shattered Crystal Gaming Network would like to congratulate Vengence, The Kingdom of Dawn, and the citizens of Baja, on the opening of an exciting landmark. The SC Gaming Network has a long, proud history of supporting online gaming communities and most exclusively, the players of Ultima Online. Weve made a contribution to the Dawn Museum of Dreams, and hereby are supporters of their project.

    We encourage everyone in the community whos helping to enrich the game with their own contributions, to continue to make Ultima Online a rich and exciting experience. We also encourage you to make a visit to Dawn, or other communities like it, to see what you can do to get involved, or simply treat yourself to the creations of what makes UO so special; the players.

    Posted by Nobody at 3:25 PM

    February 24, 2001

    OSI: West Coast Servers Problems Continue

    The following was posted to the Server Issues page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    West Coast Servers

    We are still experiencing connectivity issues to the West Coast Servers. We are working to resolve this issue as soon as possible. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:55 PM

    OSI: Ultima Online Bi-Weekly Events Continue

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Ultima Online Bi-Weekly Events Continue

    Miss the chance to join in on a weekly event? Or perhaps you enjoyed the last one and would like to join us again? Well be continuing the Ultima Online bi-weekly events for the next two weeks, based on the same daily shard schedule. Thus, if your shard had an event scheduled for the first Monday, youll have one again next Monday. The shard event schedule is located at http://town.uo.com/bwevents.html.

    Ranging from monster mashes to skill contests to PvP competitions, weve organized events to offer a little excitement for every playstyle. Each night, multiple events will run on two Ultima Online shards. While we want to make this fun for everyone, not all types of events will run every night. To find information on specific events, visit your nearest in-game Town Crier on the shards scheduled day for details. Events will begin at approximately 7:00 PM local server time on US shards, excluding Lake Superior, Siege Perilous, and Great Lakes. Events on the latter three shards will begin at 7:00 PM CST. European shard events will begin at 8:00 PM local server time, and Japanese events will begin at approximately 11:00 PM local server time.

    Please remember: Ultima Online Game Masters are not involved with these events and will be unable to provide you with any information about locations, schedules or event types.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:52 PM

    Tournament at Mage Tower Cancelled

    The Tournament scheduled for tonight at the Baja Mage Tower has been cancelled due to "inclement weather" (Shard-wide connectivity issues).

    I was just preparing myself for a rousing night of watching some sporting combat I'll be the "squire" for my comrade "Angry Jonny" as I hold his extra armor for the night but when I finally made my way through the storms to the roof of the Baja Mage Tower, the event managers were announcing that the Tournament was rescheduled for the same time tomorrow.

    The Baja Mage Tower is in Felucca, and the Tournament was scheduled for 6pm PST (contestants required to show up an hour earlier, at 5pm PST). The fighting contest is co-operated by The Order of Leonine [TOL]. In fact, it was their guildmaster, Nitram, who was acting as Event Cryer and letting everyone who made it to the Mage Tower know about the rescheduling.

    Posted by Thellaren at 7:46 PM

    West Coast Shards

    The following was posted to the Shard Issues page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    West Coast Shards

    We are experiencing intermitting connection issues to the West Coast Servers. This may cause players to occasionally lose connection. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

    Posted by Nobody at 12:18 AM

    February 23, 2001

    OSI: Seeking Stories of Luck

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Seeking Stories of Luck

    Some call it a lady - some call it far worse. It can shine down on you, save you from certain death, or forsake you completely. When it's good, you may find yourself leaning back, feet propped atop the smoldering corpse of a dragon, polishing your new sword of vanquishing. When it's bad, you're apt to find yourself stranded on Ice Island, wearing only a fancy shirt and short kilt against the freezing snow, and not a reagent or rune to your name. What is it? Luck. And without it, sometimes all the skill in the world won't make a difference.

    We want to hear your stories of luck. Has luck pulled you out of a dangerous situation? Has luck brought about a chance meeting - good or bad? No matter how luck has changed your life in Britannia, we'd like to hear your story - and perhaps share it with the UO community.

    Send an email to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, March 2nd and tell us a tale of luck in Britannia. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words. Be sure to include the words "Luck" in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story. Submissions to "UO-Profiles" become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions, and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:43 PM

    BNN Broadcast : Weekly 13

    The Britannian News Network has released a new report that includes a small interview with Dupre at the Keg & Anchor Tavern in Trinsic. You can hear it at the following location:

    BNN Weekly 13

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:58 AM

    New Orc Agression, a New Threat (Felucca)

    The following was heard relayed from the Kingdom of Dawn's Town Cryer:

    Lady Shadomir called the knights and warriors of Dawn together last night, as she was ambushed in Dawn by an Orc War Party. Intent on making sure the Orcs understood that any agression into Dawn would be met with harsh and severe justice, she rallied the forces of Dawn and lead an assault on the Delucia Orc Fort.

    The battle raged and many orcs lay fallen at the Dawnites feet. But then Draithnokk, a lich emerged from the fort. He descended on Cleopatra, one of the groups mages, attempting to vanquish the Dawnites by eliminating their magic.

    The lich was felled, but the battle had taken its toll on the Dawn forces. They retreated after counting nearly a hundred orcs slain.

    Investigations are being launched into the Liches presence amongst the Orcs. Has a new threat arisen to challenge the Kingdom of Dawn. To challenge the last light of Felucca's darkness?

    Arrianna

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:43 AM

    Feluccian Shrines Cleansed / Trammel Attacked (Facetwide)

    DupreSkara Brae, Minoc, and Despise. From reports weve gathered, three great battles were waged in these locations on Wednesday eve. From lich lords to valorite elementals, citizens of Trammel fought off the various creatures whilst other events were just starting to occur on Felucca. From whisperings amongst barkeeps and fishmongers over the last few days, Minax and/or Keeonean are suspect to be responsible for the sudden outpouring of evil.

    Whilst all these attacks were occurring in Trammel, Dupre was busy in Felucca, hiring town cryers to gather forces at his camp just north of Trinsic.

    Catching wind that the town cryer had some impending information for us, a few friends gathered in Avalon and heard the summons, scurrying off to the encampment through magical means.

    MeredithDupre was indeed at his camp near Trinsic, the site of the tents evoking several unwanted black and white memories of the Trinsic siege, which I quickly shoved to the back of my mind.

    Once enough of a force had arrived at the camp, Dupre announed his intentions of creating a new Bell of Courage in order to cleanse the Shrines, a task set forth upon him by Nystul.

    Our quest was to find pure white spider silk in order to help recreate the bell. Dupre let us know that there was one person who might know where to find the elusive and rare item. We would have to look in Trinsic, Skara Brae, Moonglow, or possibly even Minoc to find a man by the name of Lodlen.

    NystulAfter struggling with a few mount problems we searched through Trinsic and then Skara Brae, finding Lodlen and learning we needed to head to the Terrathan Keep. Apparently a terrathan queen or somesuch had this silk which Dupre was looking for.

    At this point our small group launched several unsuccessful attempts into the heart of the keep, perishing one by one until we were so weakened we could not go on. After a time, we learned that somehow Dupre had gotten into the keep and obtained the silk. Someone must have given him and his entourage a rune directly into the keep and no one passed us the entire time we were there.

    Back to the camp! When we arrived back at the camp, the Bell of Courage had apparently already been reforged in record time. Our first sight when arriving was Meredith, a bard of great reknown. She was urging everyone onward to the Shrine where undead were purported to be attacking (from town cryer reports).

    Several of us hurried there, killing the last of the assembled dead. At this point Nystul appeared on the water underneath the shrine and lifted the darkness out of the stone piece by piece, restoring the Shrine of Spirituality to its former glory. I could not see what he was doing, nor could I hear a bell, as the assembled crowd was quite loud.

    On a hunch I magically traveled to a handful of other shrines, each one protected by lich lords, rotting corpses, and other hideous forms. Stray defenders quickly cleared these, as well as a few defenders rallied to the cause. Last I saw 3-4 shrines were restored back to normal shortly thereafter.

    For more paintings of this event, see the Freeborn Press Messageboard.

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:13 AM

    February 22, 2001

    Forming a new Council...

    I have searched countless tomes of knowledge seeking an understanding of my lineage and my place among the Elves. Hoping to find the balance in which we exist. Unfortunately I have found very little that tells of our culture or of the needless slaughter of our kind not only by the humans who moved into our forests but also by our own kind.

    I find it quite necessary to call upon my Brethren to form a new society and standard in which our race can function and coexist within this realm. I found little insight as to the wisdom in which society has been created amongst not only the humans but I think all races that exist upon this land. It seems to be a philosophy of kill or be killed; Blackthorn's idea of an anarchical society seems to exist despite itself. While British's idea of a virtue based society has taken hold in many grass roots movements across the land.

    The flaw that I see in both of their ideologies is that in general they focus on Human interaction and promotion, while ignoring the true fact that there are other races just as intelligent. It appears to me that the race of man has become the self-proclaimed rulers of all that surround them. Enforcing rules and policy to cultures and societies that they do not understand. I know this because I lived as a human for many years. Until recently I never thought much about the other races that existed around me. I assumed that if I didn't bother them then they would not bother me. Now I realize what I was missing. I never extended myself to get to know anything about them.

    I implore all of my fellow Elvish brothers and sisters to join me in reuniting our kind, and fining a way to coexist with humans as well as our own kind. I do not wish to war with anyone. I merely seek to rejoin our once great nation and find a way that we can be looked at as equals with humans. It is time for us to stand as one again as we did hundreds of years ago. Let us reclaim our history and our culture. Let us form a council to govern our kind and bring peace once again to our race.

    Sleath
    Former Baron of Darkmor
    Fallen Prince, Son of Joran
    Follower of the True Path

    [anyone wishing to join the council or participate as an elf or otherwise contact me at 103164740. I would like this to be more of a political rp event, however depending on participation and ideas that I get it may turn into more. Let me know your ideas. Thanks.]

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:22 PM

    OSI: UO, Above.net, ATT, etc

    Ruben Cortez, Sr. Manager of Network Infrastructure for EA.com, posted a long message about UO and their connectivity issues on Ultima Online's Connectivity Forum, here. Below is a bit of the beginning of his post.

    UO, Above.net, ATT, etc

    Greetings,

    I'd like to introduce myself to this community, as I haven't made a public announcement regarding UO and our connectivity in years. I hope I have the time to make that fact change going forward.

    I'm the Sr. Manager of Network Infrastructure for EA.com. I manage all our network infrastructure as well as datacenter decisions for EA.com domestically and internationally. Since UO is a very vital part of EA.com, a lot of the decisions I make day to day are guided by what is best for UO and its player community. Also, since EA.com is looking to expand its PSW (persistent state world) offerings, I also make decisions based on what is best for all new PSW's to come, as well as our current games at www.ea.com.

    Let me give you some background. Ive been involved in building UOs network presence from the very beginning. I was involved in building network connectivity when UO was within the networks of Epoch, Digex, Smartnap, GlobalCenter, IXC, Exodus, and now Above.net. The international datacenters and ISPs as well, but I wont go into more details on them here. You can point the blame for who choose Above.net to me. Im fine with that. In a minute Ill give you more information as to why Above.net was chosen in the first place.

    I have also been intimately involved in every single move weve ever made with a UO shard. Its perhaps the most difficult process I ever have to deal with. Its extremely complex, not too mention nerve racking and stressful. Making the decision itself is the most painful part of it all. Its not easy. I wish I could give you details on how circumstances exactly come about that requires us to move a shard, but there are so many I wouldnt know where to start. But I can assure you of this. We have never made a decision to move a shard, including the recent moves of Great Lakes and Lake Superior, without taking into consideration how the move was going to affect our gamers. And the number one factor I take into consideration when devising our strategy on where the best place is to put a shard is this: How is the shard going to look for 90-95% of the players? The one, clear, unquestionable fact about online gaming Ive learned from building and managing UO connectivity for over 3 years now is this: regardless of what we do, regardless of how much money we spend, regardless of what ISP we choose, we can not make everyones ping times sub-100ms with no packet loss. Its a very painful fact; one I wish I could change. But I cant. I dont control that much of the Internet. As a matter of fact, no one does. But what I DO have and can present to you, is path weve been working on for years to try and decrease the percentage of those we cant please from 5-10%, down to maybe just 1-2%. More on this in a minute.
    As noted above, the entire post can be read here.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:07 PM

    ***ImaNewbie does Survivor!***New Toon!

    Tryon from Imanewbie Does Britannia sent us the following announcement:

    ***ImaNewbie does Survivor!***New Toon!

    Hi everyone!

    Yep, you read it right. This week ImaNewbie reveals a shocking revelation about the "Reality TV" Show, Survivor. Unbeknownst to the millions of viewers who tuned in every week, there was actually a seventeenth contestant and a "lost episode" that never aired. Head on over to my site and read all about it.

    Added Thursday, February 22, 2001:
    - ImaNewbie Episode #135 - Survivor - the Lost Episode

    ImaNewbie does Britannia
    http://www.imanewbie.com/

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 7:44 PM

    February 21, 2001

    Strange Revelations

    The following was posted to various message boards by Ivy, Mistress of the Dark Tower:

    Strange Revelations

    Ivy set the tome she'd been reading aside. Rubbing her tired eyes, she peered around the library. Sleath sat at a desk, studiously reading over one of the many books she had assigned to him to read. Shaking her head, she thought back on the past few days events.

    She had received a mysterious letter. She pulled it out of her pocket and looked it over again.

    Hello Dark Mistress,

    You do not know who I am but you soon shall; I may be needing some assistance from you. I understand that you might be of assistance. I have a package I need to deliver somewhere and I was wondering if you could help.

    I will pay you nicely for the storage.

    Thank you for your time.
    (insignia of a black tree)


    She had replied with...

    "I tend to like to know with whom I am doing business, before venturing on a deal. And should you like my assistance, you'll give me the information I request. Such as... the nature of the package and to whom it is being delivered. Otherwise, I am sure I would be ...glad to assist.

    Lady Ivy
    Mistress of the Dark Tower"
    *stamped with a sigil of a black and red tower*


    Of course, she had agreed. She had shrugged to herself. Why not accept? And she could always change her mind and do as she liked with whatever this package would be. Their folly for trusting her. She smirked.

    Later that eve she heard a thud at the doors to the Dark Tower. Carefully openning the doors, her eyes settled on a large bloodstained sack. It was moving and making muffled sounds. Casting a minor spell, she lifted the sack and it's contents into the air and moved it into the back room. Carefully bolting the door and magically securing it, she used the same spell to untie the bag and reveal it's contents.

    There lying on the floor before her was a badly beaten and bleeding Baron of Darkmor. Sleath. Ivy frowned deeply. This was not anything she wanted anything to do with; especially as she knew his wedding was to be this night. She had already prepared her crystal ball to watch the ceremony. Using a few other incantations, Ivy healed the Baron's wounds, unbound him and cleaned him up a bit. She allowed him to change out of his ragged torn clothing and into a soft black velvet robe.

    She didn't even want to think of the following days. The removal of Sleath's hand. It's replacement. And the final death of the Pretender. And Sleath's request to become a student of the Tower.

    That had baffled her the most, she thought he would want to be returned to Darkmor. To Mirabel. But instead he sought his first assignment as a "student of Darkness". She had told him to seek and become familiar with the works of the Library.


    And so they sat. Him reading over the tomes, again and again. Saturating his mind with every word, absorbing the ages of knowledge held inside those books.

    Ivy excused herself and went downstairs. Rummaging through a chest, she pulled out a small solid bag. Openning it she eyed the many vials within. Kray. Alton. Wraith. Kyra Shadowfare. Miriam. Hella. Sauron. Swift. Mrrshan. Opalescense. Rakhir. Mirabel. Sleath. The Pretender. Thus were the vials labeled. Pulling the one labelled Sleath from its place in the heavily padded bag, she held it up to the candle light.

    The vial was brimming full and a double was in the slot beneath where this one had rested. She had gathered enough of his blood to experiment many times over. Securing the bag closed and putting it safely away, she climbed the stairs of the Tower, making her way to the roof.

    There she prepared her small ritual and sat down in the center of the pentagram. Putting a drop of his blood on her tongue, she murmured the incantation that would show her what she sought. She closed her eyes and fell into a deep meditation.

    King Joran of the elves of the Yew Forests. His bride, Isabella - Princess of... an elven people who dwelled beneath the Earth, yet not Drow. Sleath was their son. Joran's death. Sleath's survival, his heritage hidden with a glamour. Isabella's disappearance. Isabella's reappearance in Britain, under a similar glamour that hid her son's true nature. She had a daughter to a blacksmith. Isabella's eventual passing.

    The visions came to her mind, with names, dates, and other details so strong her mind swam. She could only grasp fragments, but those fragments were enough. Forcing the spell to end, she felt herself falling backward upon the cold floor. Opening her eyes, the stars sparkled above her. A slow malevolent smile spread across her lips.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:46 AM

    O.P.U.S. Archery Event (Felucca)

    The following annoucement was made on the O.P.U.S. Guild Pages:

    O.P.U.S is pleased to accounce they are sponsoring an Archery Event on February 24TH which is a Saturday at 2:00PM PST TIME. This event will take place in Felucca and will be a PvP event. We will be meeting people at Skara Brae Bank in Trammel from there OPUS Staff will escort you thru the Skara Brae Moongate to Felucca.

    I apologize for the mishap we had last Saturday the 10th Technical difficulties made it impossible for me to be there.

    Grand Prize: Valorite Heavy Archer Armor
    Second Prize: Gold Heavy Archery Armor
    Third Prize: Shadow Heavy Archer Armor

    Lord Dracon, Guild Master O.P.U.S

    Posted by Thellaren at 2:09 AM

    February 20, 2001

    OSI: Beta Third Dawn Patching

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Beta Third Dawn Patching

    Due to an issue with an East Coast patch server, some Ultima Online: Third Dawn customers may have received an incomplete patch 44 for the Third Dawn client. In the event that you received this incomplete patch and are now unable to complete a patch, you will need to reinstall Ultima Online: Third Dawn. Please note that all Third Dawn files must be deleted from your computer: this may require manually deleting the Third Dawn folder in some cases. If you have both Renaissance and Third Dawn installed on your computer, you will not need to reinstall Renaissance. We apologize for this inconvenience.

    This patch error will not affect customers who have not installed Ultima Online: Third Dawn or who successfully patched Third Dawn patch 44.

    Posted by Nobody at 9:34 PM

    OSI: UO Message Boards Update

    The following was posted to the FYI page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    UO Message Boards Update

    We are currently experiencing some technical issues with the Ultima Online Message Boards and MyUO. We are working to resolve the problem as quickly as possible.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:13 PM

    Dawn Anniversary Celebration! (Felucca)

    The Kingdom of Dawn was busy this week, citizens immersed in helping with various openings and ceremonies. One of the events that we heard about was the reaffirmation of the wedding vows of Queen Hayloh and King Desmond. Also citizens of Dawn were helping Vengence get a yearlong highly publicized project open to the public, clearly a landmark occasion to befit Dawns Anniversary party!

    The Royal Affirmation of Wedding Vows between Hayloh and Desmond occurred on Wednesday February 14th, Valentines Day! This was held at the Dawn Tower, atop the roof. Dawn citizen Shadomir made several paintings of the event and bound them together in an album. You can view this entire wedding album at the following location.

    Last night (Monday evening), this editor arrived at Dawn's seaside Museum of Dreams, the newest addition to Dawns wealth of community. The tower was a project long in the making, saved from destruction at one point by an Implementor by the name of Llano. You can read about this particular story at the Museum itself.

    Vengence, the curator of the Museum, showed me the entire grounds, giving me a tour of The Treasures of the Implementors, The Ethereal Chamber, The Royal Kitchen, The Armory & Workshop, The Slaughterhouse, and Oceania. For me it was a grand journey, several items bringing back memories from the past and times when ...us old folks couldnt boot people out of our house, we had to use force. Anyway, it was a memorable visit and we highly recommend it to everyone. The place is very thoughtfully set up with unique eye candy on every floor and the hospitality was definitely worth mentioning.


    To visit the Kingdom of Dawn, consult the map on the following piece of parchment.

    Posted by Thellaren at 2:27 AM

    February 19, 2001

    UO:3D - Voodoo 3 Video Card Information

    The following was posted to UOSS:

    UO:TD - Voodoo 3 Information

    Cutter, Ultima Online Quality Assurance Lead, posted the following info on the OSI Ultima Online: Third Dawn Bug Board:
    If you are useing a Voodoo 3 and you see a great deal of lag, here is something you can try. I use a Voodoo 3 2000 and it helped me.
    1. 1. Get the latest voodoo 3 drivers (1.07 or 1.03) which can be found here @ http://www.voodoofiles.com
    2. Once the drivers are installed go to the 3Dfx icon that has been added to your system tray (next to the clock on the task bar) and right click it, set the color depth to 16 bpp
    3. double left click the icon to pull up the 3Dfx advanced features window.
    4. Click the + Next to the Direct3D Option to expand the menu
    5. Click the + next to the Level of Detail Bias
    6. Click the number that has appear under the level of detail bias, a slider will appear.
    7. Move the Slider all the way towards best performance.
    8. Click Okay
    Good luck,
    Cutter
    The posting can be found here.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:17 PM

    The Sea Horse, What a Beauty

    The following was posted to UOSS:

    The Sea Horse, What a Beauty!

    A picture of the Sea Horse has been added to the Hunter's Guide.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:14 PM

    The Best of the Best Fight Night!

    The following was posted to the Baja section of UOSS:

    The Best of the Best Fight Night!

    Seer Eliar and Seer Hawk hosted The Best of the Best Fight Night, Sunday at 6:00 PM PST at the Skarabrae Faire Grounds in Felucca. Crowds gathered from all over Brittania to see the series of fifteen duels. Forbidden to heal, use poison, pets, or magic items the combatants struggled to survive each grueling match. PoisoneDevil became the champion and won a platinum ring engraved with the phrase "The best of the best". Count Straud, Lord Victory, and Tezu were runners up each winning 5-15k gold, treasure maps, and magic wands.

    After the match, Seer Eliar stated that the Skarabrae Faire grounds will be the place to be in March. The Best of the Best Fight Nights in Felucca will become a permanent event. Some changes to rules and the security of the fairegrounds are being planned. Be sure to stop by the Skarabrae Faire grounds each Sunday around 6 PM PST to see the Last Man Standing Event on Trammel or the Best of the Best Fight Night on Felucca.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:11 PM

    February 18, 2001

    Cut and Glue your own UO House

    The following note was posted to UOSS, about someone who made a neat little "print, cut out, and glue" model for a basic UO house:

    Cut and Glue your own UO House

    About a year ago, I was looking for a cool birthday-present for my brother, with whom I usually play Ultima Online. So I decided to build the house he owned at that time for "real". Have a look at the following link:

    http://www.enya.ch/uo/uo.html, then select News.

    This site has been up quite a while, but due to lack of time I didn't keep it up-to-date or even announce it to the public. But now I think you might have a look, since I read the story from Callisto's table-top-rpg, which this house might fit in. If anyone is interested in further realisation of other houses, let me know.

    Greetings from Switzerland

    Astro von Togh

    Posted by Nobody at 11:37 PM

    PvP Ladder Tourney in Skara Brae Fairgrounds Tonight!

    Ursula asked me to relay the following information:

    Hi All! Seer Eliar came by to remind us that there is a PvP ladder tourny at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds in Felucca tonight [located in the farmlands northeast of the Skara Brae docks -Ed.]. There will be a facet gate at the fairgrounds in Trammel. Orientation begins at 5pm PST. Event starts at 6pm PST. She assures me that murderers and attackers will be dealt with.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:40 PM

    Baja Stress Relief Results

    Chance, organizer of the Baja Stress Relief events on the UOSS Baja Forum, had this to say about last nights stress releaser:

    Well, things went much better this time. Looting was much more organized, and resulted in collection of approx. 70k of gold. I threw in 55k, Cerridwen contributed 125k, and Johnny gave me an extra 50k on top of what he had collected as a greenie. I'm not sure if the extra came out of his pocket, or somebody else gave it to him, but a big thanks goes out to Cerridwen and Johnny and/or the mystery donor. Anyways, we had a total of 300k. We had a couple more people to split amongst this time, so the shares came out to 16k each when all was said and done.

    We started out in Ice, and quickly owned the rat fort. I marked a bunch of runes, and several others were marking as well. I think I've got one extra rune marked to the corral inside the fort, so if anybody needs one let me know.

    After the fort, we spread out into the rest of Ice. The spawn was nuts, I don't know if we had some invisible GM 'assistance' or not, but I've never seen the spawn like that. Of course, I haven't been inside Ice since the spawn change so it could have been normal, but enough stuff was spawning to keep 30 or so folks very, very busy.

    After awhile, we regrouped and headed to Deceit, and hung out in the LL room for awhile. Those silver serpents kept everyone on their toes, but pretty much everything else was put down quickly.

    After a second regrouping, we headed out to Shame, and cruised around the first level for awhile until everybody decided it was time to quit and we headed back to Skara to split the loot.

    Command and control was very good through most of Ice, although I had to run back and find Willard and Razer, and Foolkiller showed up while I was ressing and retrieving them, so I brought the 3 lost sheep back to the fold. After we left Ice, things fell apart quickly. I tried to spread messages by telling everybody to repeat our locations and destinations on their party chat systems to try and reach the people that weren't in the immediate vicinity, but we left people behind in Ice when we went to Deceit, and in Deceit when we went to Shame, and in Shame when we headed back to the bank. I'm not sure we could have done much else, it's pretty much up to everybody to stay on their toes and keep up with the group, although I know some folks were having connection issues, including Musashi, one of our designated looters.

    All in all, a very fun time. I think we'll make Stress Relief Night a monthly event so we don't get tired of it, and to give a little more time to collect dough for the 'extra' that is thrown into the kitty on top of the collected loot. Every other week I'll hold some type of other event.

    Thanks to everyone for coming, and making the event a great success! See you next time.

    Chance of Baja

    Posted by Thellaren at 5:22 PM

    Dawn Fashion Show Cancelled

    I read the following announcement on the Town Cryer page for the Kingdom of Dawn:

    Fashion Show Cancelled

    Unfortunately, something has come up in real life, and we will be unable to conduct the fashion show scheduled for tonight. We will reschedule the show at a later date and time.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:29 PM

    February 17, 2001

    New T-map Library (Trammel)

    The following announcement was made on the UOSS Baja Forum by Zodiac:

    I have just completed a T-map rune library (All T-map locations from the Stratics maps) on Baja at my villa 66o5'N 24o19'W in Trammel. This is just south of the Yew crypts. Ocollo is not included as it is not accessable in Trammel. Feel free to come and visit it. The runes are labeled by pin location coordinates.

    Zodiac Grandmaster Mage\Scribe, Baja

    Posted by Thellaren at 6:59 PM

    Baja Stress Relief Night (Trammel)

    The following regularly scheduled event was created on the UOSS Baja Stratics Board and is open to all Bajanians:

    Event will be Saturday, February 17th, at 11pm est/10pm cst/9pm mst/8pm pst. We'll meet outside the Skara bank in Trammel, and will be headed to Ice as our first target so we can mark some runes to the insta-death rat archer fort. I'll be bringing my mage, Syrinx Dragon, and will bring a ton of blanks to mark for folks who want them and can't mark their own.

    Exposed lung-tissue pink will be the color of the night, as it was last time. Designated looters will wear a puke-green robe, I will have robes of both colors available for people who need them.

    When you get there, try to group up in parties of 5 or so, whatever is manageable. I know there are some bugs with status bars in larger parties. Each party should have one green-robed person that will loot kills for that party. The designated looter should only worry about gold, if anybody wants any of the other crap that we'll find, go ahead and take it yourself. Designated Looter would be a good job for you non-combat type folks who just want to go along and see the fun even if you don't have a fighting char yourself. PINKIES, TRY TO KEEP YOUR GREENIE ALIVE!

    Remember, griefing is encouraged! We're there to have fun and own the dungeon, regardless of what other people think of us. Just because somebody yells "Mine!" doesn't mean it is! In Lors should be given only to other event participants, and the same for Healing, Curing, and Rezzing.

    Bring your bad attitude, and let's have some fun!

    Chance of Baja

    Posted by Thellaren at 6:52 PM

    Broadcast UO Live!

    Markee Dragon has been posting announcements about this new, free service all over the place:

    Broadcast UO Live!

    www.freegamecam.com is very excited to announce that we have entered public beta. Now anyone that wants to broadcast UO live can do so. Do you have an even that you want to broadcast so that people who can not attend in game can watch you? Are you someone that just likes to show off? Are you a PK and want to broadcast your kills to the world? There are so many things that can be done with the FreeGameCam.

    The program is very easy to use. It supports much more then just UO and also has other features such as an automatic screen capture program.

    Come on over to www.freegamecam.com and check it out. You can just watch others or you can show off and broadcast to the world. Come join us in the fun. We are having a blast!

    Markee Dragon
    www.shatteredcrystal.com
    www.freegamecam.com

    Posted by Nobody at 10:58 AM

    February 16, 2001

    OSI: The Lands of Ilshenar

    The following was posted to the Testing for Next Update section of the Ultima Online Web site:

    The Lands of Ilshenar

    Ilshenar is a third facet in the world of Britannia. Ilshenar will have different conditions from the facets of Felucca and Trammel. Player interactions on Ilshenar will be just like Trammel with the following exceptions:

    1) Players who are within murder status will be able to travel to Ilshenar under the following guidelines:
    • Murderers will be able to go to Ilshenar once per month. If a players murder status wears off, and then they return to a murderer state, the once per month guideline will still be in place. Once the trip to Ilshenar is taken while in murderer status, the count starts and the player may not again enter Ilshenar until they are either not a murderer, or until a month has passed.
    • If a murderer has taken the effects of stat loss, they will not be able to gain skills while in Ilshenar until the reduced skills are returned to their pre-stat loss numbers. For example:
      • Player A loses 20% of their skills to stat loss.
      • Player A will not be able to gain any skills in Ilshenar until this 20% that has been lost has been regained.
      • Player A will be able to gain skills in Ilshenar once this percentage lost to stat loss has been restored.
    • Murder counts will not decay in Ilshenar.
    • Stat loss and murder counters are still in effect, with the same time durations per murder. These have not changed in any way.
    • Other players cannot attack murderers in Ilshenar.
    2) Traveling to and within Ilshenar.

    Players visiting Ilshenar will not be able to cast gate or recall within the Ilshenar lands. Travel will behave in the following manners:
    • There will be no recall or player created gating within Ilshenar.
    • Travel to and from Ilshenar will be via public moongates. The gates within Ilshenar will be scattered around those lands, and will connect to public moongates located within Trammel and Felucca.
    • There will be a moongate located on the Bucs Den island for murderers to be able to use to get to Ilshenar.
    • Players will be able to use a menu system on the public moongates to select destination, including which facet.
    3) Siege Perilous will not have an Ilshenar facet.

    Note that in order to travel to Ilshenar, you will need to be using the Third Dawn client. Regular clients (2D) will not be able to travel to Ilshenar.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:33 PM

    OSI: Third Dawn Beta Ordering Closed

    The following was posted to the FYI section of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Third Dawn Beta Ordering Closed

    The Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta ordering form is now closed. We appreciate your interest in Ultima Online: Third Dawn. For the latest information on Ultima Online please visit http://www.uo3d.com

    Posted by Nobody at 6:30 PM

    OSI: Network Difficulties Follow-up

    The following was posted to the Shard Issues section of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Network Difficulties Follow-up

    We have resolved the issues with our network. We thank you for your patience and sincerely apologize for the inconvenience.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:25 PM

    OSI: Network Difficulties with all Shard

    The following was posted to the Shard Issues section of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Network Difficulties with all Shard

    We are currently experiencing issues with our network. GM support may be unavailable at this time. We assure you that we are working diligently to correct this and we will update you once we have more information.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:23 PM

    Available Housing





    The tower is quite a distance west of Wrong. The only thing you'll find in the area are trees and friendly neighbors. I will sell it for 300,000 golden coins. Please contact me at: 94363784 or sam@buysam.com

    Jixxa has a small tower for sell as well on Fire Island away from the danger. It is a short walk to the Temple. She has not placed a price on this tower as of yet. She can be contact at the Golden Brew Message Board

    Also, a small marble workshoppe in Felluca is for sell for 300,000 golden coins. The owner can be contacted with the following ICQ #: 87175443

    Posted by Brenstar at 12:48 AM

    February 15, 2001

    Calandryll on current Purple Hued Item Bans

    I read the following at UOSS:

    Calandryll on current Purple Hued Item Bans

    In this thread on OSI's forums, Calandryll says the following about the current banning of people that have abused the "create a purple hued item" bug.
    While working on a fix for the purple item bug we implemented logging to track those who were using the bug. We then investigated the accounts in question.
    1. Only those that USED the bug were banned. And even then, they only got banned if they did it many times and/or had prior marks on their account.
    2. Those who only did it a few times and had no prior marks were given a final warning...they were not banned.
    3. We did not ban anyone simply for having the items who did not use the bug. However, these items are still considered illegal and those who have them should get rid of them.
    4. The total number of individuals banned was under 200.
    This bug was not harmless. It disrupted the faction system since those stealing the sigil were doing so to exploit to make the purple items rather than take over towns and generated support calls from players witnessing the exploiters. Not to mention the fact that using bugs is against the ToS of Ultima Online.

    -Calandryll
    Manager of Community Services
    So if you have any purple hued items that were created with this bug, destroy them now if you value your account.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:24 PM

    *hands you an invitation*

    Posted by Nobody at 12:04 AM

    February 13, 2001

    Marriage of Tiberius & Vega! (Trammel)

    Fellow Citizens of Britannia-

    On Thursday February 15th The Brotherhood of Valor is honored to present the marriage between Tiberius of Yew and Vega.

    Tiberius has become well known across the land for his teachings of the Virtues as well as his extended arm of charity. Vega, a Praetorian Guard and founding member of the Brotherhood of Valor, can be easily recognized for her compassion for others and her courage on the battlefield.

    Please join us in bringing these two wonderful people together. The wedding will be held at The Nujelm Palace, in Trammel at 7:30 CST. A reception and Valentines Day celebration will be held at the Alliance of Virtue Tavern immediately following the service. We do ask that you please leave your mounts in the stable for pets are not allowed in the AoV Tavern. We will be offering prizes at the reception for three separate contests:

    1. Britannia's Cutest Couple.
    2. Britannia's Best Dressed (Male and Female)
    3. Best Valentines Day original poem. (Must be submitted in a book to Midian during the reception)
    So come one, come all come dressed for a ball!

    Safe travels and I hope to see you there,

    Midian

    Posted by Thellaren at 10:41 PM

    OSI: Looking For Something To Do?

    The following was added to Online Community Relations page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Looking For Something To Do?

    While virtually all of my previous comments from the team have been about Community Relations, I am also responsible for the Event Programming team here at OSI. Hopefully many of you have seen the recent event announcement and accompanying event calendar. Ive seen a lot of questions from players asking what the motive is behind these events, as they are a bit different than what we have done previously, and I figured this would make an excellent opportunity to talk about events in UO.

    Before my time here at OSI, as a player, I experienced three events that I was aware of. I say that I was aware of because often, players are involved in an event and dont even realize it. The recent change assigning purple names to volunteers has helped this somewhat, as players are now more easily able to discern whether that mongbat is part of something special or not. I recall all three of those events with great fondness and each one gave me a sense of accomplishment and made Ultima Online feel more alive. Even though, for the most part, I was fighting the same AI controlled monsters I always fought, the fact that killing these monsters had a purpose beyond skill and loot made the battles more exciting.

    While everyone wants to create vast, dynamic fiction (what I refer to as a scenario) that touches and changes the game-world, the basic building blocks of a scenario, the event, are easily over-looked. Running this schedule of events allows us to not only create some fun and exciting things for players to do outside of their usual gaming experience, but at the same time, keeps things simple so we can gather the information we need to run even better events in the future. Its much easier to gather information from single events, (looking at what worked and what didnt work, how events affect those not involved and/or not expecting it, etc.) than it would be if the events were all tied together in one over-arching story. Of course, some of the events we are running now do have stories behind them.

    So whats next? Well a lot of that depends on how these events go and what we (and you) learn. Hopefully in the coming months Ill write more event related comments from the team as we move towards the next evolution of events. In the meantime, I hope all of you get a chance to participate in these events and look forward to your feedback on the message board we have set up.

    -Calandryll
    Manager of Community Services

    Posted by Nobody at 5:41 PM

    OSI: Battle Vortex Interviews Designer Evocare

    The following was added to FYI on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Battle Vortex Interviews Designer Evocare

    Want to hear the word on the Faction system straight from a UO designer? Join Fear of Battle Vortex as he interviews Designer Evocare about the past, present, and future of factions. Listen in at Ultima Online Factions!

    Dont forget, you can listen to the Battle Vortex Audio Shows with your RealAudio player. Dont have one? Battle Vortex will help you get started on their RealAudio help page.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:38 PM

    OSI: Bandage Creation Changes

    The following was added to Testing For Next Update on Feb. 13, on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Bandage Creation Changes

    Players can cut multiple bandages at once using the following manner:
    • Players place an amount of cloth in their backpack. The cloth must be in a players backpack to be cut into bandages.
    • When scissors are used on the stack, it will be cut into a stack of bandages equaling the amount of cloth that was in the stack being cut.
    Bandages will weight equal to that amount of cloth. For example, one bandage will weigh exactly the same as one cloth and likewise one thousand bandages will weigh the same as one thousand cloth.

    All pre-existing bandages will be "grandfathered" with these weight changes, so that they equal a 1 to 1 weight ratio compared to cloth.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:36 PM

    OSI: Events Schedule Update

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Events Schedule Update

    The event schedule has been modified to accommodate prime playing time for players on all affected shards. Events will begin at approximately 7:00 PM local server time on US shards, excluding Lake Superior, Siege Perilous, and Great Lakes. Events on these three shards will begin at 7:00 PM CST. European shard events will begin at 8:00 PM local server time, and Japanese events will begin at approximately 11:00 PM local server time.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:31 PM

    Caramon's 2nd Public PvP Event

    Caramon of the UOSS Stratics Baja Forums held a public PvP event this last Sunday, successfully drawing a large crowd of participants atop the roof of his tower. For pictures of all the dueling that occured, proceed to the following site generously set up by Brekkee of Baja.

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:05 AM

    The Principle Pieces - Part I

    The following stories of note were recently posted to BNN World News:

    In his lab, Nystul sat. Buried deep in a leather-bound tome that had the appearance of timelessness. He picked the book up and slowly closed it, as if taking care not to injure it. The book had a mild blue gleam to it as if it was charged with some magical power. Some might say that it was. The Book of Truth, rarely seen, let alone read by anyone, had been brought to Nystul earlier that day. It normally rested in the Lycaeum, though no one could see it unless they knew just how to look, for it is kept out of phase with the normal world.

    Nystul gave in to a smile, thinking of the look upon Anons face when he found that Mariah had simply walked into the Lycaeum, lifted the book from its dais, and walked out. Anon would be furious. Nystul continued to smile. Anons anger might be tempered when Nystul finished his mission but, all the same, he would be even more angered by not being involved. Nystul, though at odds with his old friend, could not bring himself to hate the man.

    "Some day", he thought, "we will put things right."

    Nystul was not an old man by any stretch of the imagination, but he was no longer as young as he once was. Though a more powerful mage than he was in his younger days, each spell now seemed to sap more life from him. He tapped his foot with impatience. He had all but one item that he needed to complete his goal. The last piece of the puzzle should be in the hands of Lord Dupre and Lord Geoffrey.

    Nystul looked across the room to where the candle sat. The Candle of Love gave off a soft and comforting yellow light. The candle had been kept secreted in Empath Abbey until the troubles with the Followers of Armageddon began.

    Julia, Nystul thought, and sighed.

    Some day, he said, another will arrive to take your place, but never shall you be forgotten, dear friend.

    Nystul put the book down next to the candle. Where the yellow glow of the candle met the blue gleam of the book, a clear line of green flickered into existence.

    Nystul thought, Justice, and smiled.

    These objects were the physical representations of two of the Three Principles. The third would be in his hands as soon as his friends returned from Serpents Hold with the Bell of Courage. The bell required both Geoffrey and Dupre to retrieve. Only Dupre knew its exact location and only Geoffrey could remove it from the dais upon which it lay. Nystul thought of what he was planning to do again.

    "This is important, he thought, redoubling his resolve.

    Dupre appeared in the doorway, looking grim.

    "Dupre! You have brought the bell?" Nystul asked hopefully.

    "Nay", Dupre spat.

    "Nor shall we have that honor, Nystul", Geoffrey said as he stepped past Dupre and into the small room's dim light.

    "Nay? What has happened friends? Nystul asked, looking confused.

    "Shattered", Dupre exhaled and slammed his scabbard hard on the floor.

    "Shattered?! But how? No one knew where it was!

    "We found this, left in front of the dais", Geoffrey tossed a bound cluster of raven feathers to the floor.

    "That witch! How could Minax have known where the bell was hidden?"

    "If only I knew. Dupre sighed and sat down on a small stool.

    Nystul looked crushed for a moment. Then his eyes flickered with life.

    "Well that is something we may think upon later Dupre. For now we must find a way to make a new bell. Nystul walked to his bookshelves.

    "Make a new bell? Geoffrey asked.

    "Yes. That one must have been forged some how. It didn't just magically appear out of thin air. Nystul said, gesturing wildly in the air with his hands. "All three of them were made by mens hands, with the use of magic and power drawn straight from the Virtues themselves. The principles of Truth, Love and Courage outdate most everything in this world."

    Dupre looked up, "Then what must we do?

    Nystul smiled, "Get some rest! You both look as if you have not slept in days."

    "Indeed, we have not."

    "Both of you get some rest then. I will send some one for you if I make any progress." Nystul smiled and pointed to the door.

    The men nodded and left.

    Nystul slumped down in his chair and sighed heavily.

    "That wretched witch" he mumbled.

    His resolve seemed to fade a little now that Dupre and Geoffrey had left the chamber. He looked about. The hour was growing late and he knew he needed to travel first thing in the morning. He stood up and put the book he held back in place and headed off to his bedchamber. Tomorrow would not be a good day. Traveling to Moonglow on Felucca could only mean trouble.
    The tales continue with the following chapters:

    The Principle Pieces - Part II
    The Principle Pieces - Part III
    The Principle Pieces - Part IV

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:46 AM

    A Moment in History

    Today marks the one year anniversary of the fall of Trinsic on the Baja Shard (Pre-Trammel). Here is a painting made by an onlooker that commemorates the battle fought by the stalwart defenders well past midnight and into the morning.

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:25 AM

    February 12, 2001

    More Mage Tower Dungeon Tales!

    Nekkar has placed two of the recent Mage Tower Crawl tales up for viewing on the new Mage Tower site. You can now view those from Feb. 3rd and Feb. 10th by proceeding to their front page here.

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:47 PM

    Kingdom of Dawn Anniversary Celebration

    The following announcement was posted to the Kingdom of Dawn Town Cryer page:

    Kingdom of Dawn Anniversary Celebration

    A series of events will be held throughout the week to celebrate the Kingdom of Dawn entering its third year as a player-run community! The Citizens of Sosaria near and far are invited to join us in our festivities! A map showing Dawn's location can be found here, and a map of Dawn itself can be found here. There is also a runebook of Dawn locations inside the Dawn Embassy in Ocllo, a small house right next to Ocllo Bank in Felucca.

    The schedule of events:

    Wednesday, February 14th: Valentines Day marks the wedding anniversary of King Desmond and Queen Hayloh! At 8pm PST on the 14th, they will renew their wedding vows during a special ceremony to be held at Dawn Tower. Food and drink will be provided at a reception to be held at the Acropolis Tavern and Winery in Dawn immediately after the ceremony!

    Thursday, February 15th: The grand re-opening of the Dawn Library at its new, more convenient location south of Dawn Tower! The Dawn Library is the largest collection of player-created books on the shard! Library staff will be on hand from 8pm PST to 9pm PST to answer your questions or to accept contributions of new books to add to our ever-growing collection.

    Friday, February 16th: The First Dawn Open House will be held! Our goal during the Open House is to introduce interested persons to our community. Representatives of Dawn will be available between 7pm and 9pm PST to provide you transportation to and from Dawn, answer questions, give you a personalized tour, and to give you free runes! If you'd like to discover what Dawn is all about, either show up at Dawn Tower, or contact King Desmond at ICQ 6036303 to arrange for transportation, between 7pm and 9pm on Friday!

    Saturday, February 17th: The First Dawn Tournament of Roses will be held at Dawn Tower! Test your mettle in one of three different matches: 1 vs. 1 Joust (both fighters on horseback), 1 vs. 1 Melee, and 1 vs. 1 Magery!The rules for the tournament are:
    • Contestents will flag grey before combat begins
    • No magic weapons or armor
    • No looting
    • No tamed animals
    • No poisoned weapons
    • Persons entering the Joust event must supply their own horse
    • Maximum 15 minutes per bout. If there is no winner in 15 minutes, the King and Queen will decide the winner
    Each match will have a 50k first prize and a 25k second prize!

    Pre-registration is requested. To register, contact King Desmond at ICQ 6036303, or by email. Be sure to tell us which event(s) you wish to register for.

    Sunday, February 18th: Arrianna will host another of her world famous Fashion Shows! Come see the latest in Sosarian fashion designs, using the latest in leather and clothes dying technology! The event will begin at 7pm PST at Dawn Tower!

    Monday, February 19th: The long-awaited Dawn Museum of Dreams will finally open its doors this Monday! Over a year in the making, with dozens of beneficiaries and contributors, the Dawn Museum of Dreams will be the shard's largest public collection of odd, rare, and unique items, along with descriptions of the items and their origins! Thanks to the efforts of Lord Vengence, one of Baja's formost scholars, the Museum of Dreams will come to life on the 19th! There will be a short ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8pm PST, and then the doors will be open to the public!

    We hope you will join us during some or all of our planned events, we will be happy to see you here!!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:52 PM

    New Anna Computer Virus Spreading Fast

    There's a new virus that's started coming into my "real life" job, and after some quick digging I found the following details at ZDNet, and the entire article (including avoiding e-mail virii) can be found here. Below is the beginng of the article:

    Anna virus spreading fast
    By Robert Vamosi, Help & How-To

    Looking for jpegs of Anna Kournikova in your inbox? Be aware, looking at her photos may unleash a worm on your PC.

    February 12, 2001

    There's a new virus spamming the world. Anna (a.k.a VBS/SST and Kalamar) has some of the same characteristics as the ILOVEYOU worm. There are reports of the Anna containing a destructive component; however, no details are known at this time. Anti-virus software companies are still investigating this new worm. It is known that Anna is a mass mailer; it will use listings found in the Microsoft Outlook address book to send copies of itself. Anna may overload e-mail servers. Anna currently ranks as a 7 on the ZDNet Virus Meter.

    How It Works
    The Anna virus arrives via e-mail with the following information:

    Subject: Here you have, ;o)

    Body: Hi: Check This!

    Attached: AnnaKournikova.jpg.vbs

    Clicking on the attachment activates the worm. Anna uses the Microsoft Outlook address book to mass e-mail itself to others.
    Don't open any attachment, from e-mails, ICQ, IRC, anywhere, unless you know exactly who is sending it and that person or company is a trusted source. Again, the rest of the article can be found here

    Posted by Nobody at 1:24 PM

    The higher you climb...

    The following was posted to the Heaven's Forge message board, here:

    The higher you climb...

    The happy couple walked out of the tower, to well-wishes and congratulations. Mirabel turned to hug Rakhir tightly, and then she and Sleath started down the stairs to the door.

    Out front, she turned to him and asked where they were headed.

    "It's a surprise," he said, as he planted the Felucca stone.

    Smiling, Mirabel stepped through. He dropped the book and they recalled to a small cottage Mirabel had never seen before, yet it has the Darkmor banner flying and so she was happy.

    "A retreat property," Sleath explained.

    They walked inside.. it is rather bare. A chest.. an oven.. two training dummies.

    "My lord?" Mirabel asked. This isn't what she had expected.

    "Drop the act," Sleath responded.

    She blinked in confusion, and stared at him like she'd never seen him before.

    "Take a seat, madam. You may need it," Sleath directed her.

    She perched on the end of the chest, there being no other seats.

    Then her world fell in upon itself as he explained.

    He is not Sleath. Sleath is captive. She is married to .. his brother? A brother who wants what Sleath has. Darkmor, everything. She studies his face, finally sees... very very similar.. but no.. not her love. Magicks of some kind, fogging her mind.. fogging everyone's minds... Take me to him! In good time. You may see him. They go to Moonglow. There he is.. she is not allowed near him.. oh.. but he has been beaten.. my poor love.. Do as he says, Sleath cautions her.. He is capable of great evil.. Sobbing, she goes back to Darkmor with the pretender. Sleeping with a dagger in hand. Such bitter arguments. The brother.. and Sleath? are elven.. How.. but why did no one say? A prophecy.. a war.. a battle.. a dead father.. a not-dead mother.. it is all so bewildering.. She falls asleep crying and does not awaken until the next morning.

    The pretender mocks her. Forces her to act the bride, using Sleath's life as a bribe. He tells her he will send her gifts, pieces of her love, perhaps his finger so she can place his ring upon it and keep it with her always. She snaps. She locks the door. She will not come out, not for anyone, not for Ursula, Mariah, not even her own sister. She ventures out once.. Agrias is there, Agrias who hates her, hates all humans.. He threatens her, wants the story, wants to know why she is so upset.. just to amuse himself, for no other reason.. she considers telling him.. realizes that would seal Sleath's doom.. She can not do it.

    Oh no.. Megra banging on the door.. Solitaire and the Pretender fighting.. She knew the girl was loyal to her but this is not the way.. She runs downstairs, gets between them, it is no use, the angry words fly over her head and around her.. Solitaire has her dagger out, Sl.. the pretender orders the gypsy out.. what will all this mean for Sleath, he is certain to bear the punishment.. oh no now he looks at her..

    "Get your things and get out."

    She stands frozen.

    "You could not cooperate. You have outlived your usefulness. Leave now."

    She tries to argue, tries to persuade him to let her go to Sleath, no, I have cooperated, please do not punish him for me...

    "What is sad," he laughs, "Is that I would likely have let both of you live. Go now. Take your things and go. You will come to no harm. I cannot say the same for Sleath."

    I could kill him here, she thinks.. I could take out this kryss Wraith gave me, the poisoned one, for emergencies.. he is not that strong.. but then what of Sleath? What of his warnings that if he comes to harm then Sleath will pay the penalty? I am a coward. I leave.

    Days pass and no word. Then, a box on her doorstep. Opening it.. she retches, removed.. his hand.. the ring she'd chosen so carefully jammed on to the finger that had never known it in life.. holding a note.

    "His hand, as promised, madam. I am here, and I watch. Your love is no more, beyond the magics that might have returned him to you. You may retain your title of Baroness but do not think on me as your husband, for I am not. You may resign the title if you choose. I am handing the tavern over to Owen, you may continue to run your vendors from there if you wish.

    With contempt, I am,

    Sleath, Prince Darkmor."

    Posted by Nobody at 12:42 AM

    Warden Last Standing (Trammel)

    Yestereve, I followed a mob of vagrants through some Feluccian portal, made tangible in Skara Brae by green robed mystics, Elder Tanaka and Seer Eliar.

    Apparently another Last Man Standing competition was taking place, as heralded by one of the town cryers of the land. The place was packed, with onlookers clustered around the outside of the ring, many heckling with tired old wisecracks and meteor swarms, with the majority looking patiently and intently into the arena.

    The green robed mystics brought forth about five or six groups of 4-5 warriors, who had to face some of Britannias hardest monsters, including a few not found in any bestiary. Standing out among the beasts, were a few pure black creatures, dark as the night sky. At one point a lumbering zombie like creature emerged from the gate in the middle of the ring. The Abomination as well as its wolf-like guardian were called forth. Morpheous, a member of a faction I cant recall, fell victim to the guardian in the finals after one hit. Elder Tanaka and Eliar seemed quite surprised at the verocity of the beast and swiftly teleported it and its master away at the end of the match.


    At the end of this night, the standings were as follows:

    1st Place: (Ted of the Dark Wardens)
    2nd Place: (Orion of the Golden Knights) *Kudos to his technique. It worked quite well*
    3rd Place: (Smithy of FB2)

    Id also like to give an honorable mention of comedic relief to Deranigan. He entered the ring with naught but his fishing pole and jester hat, taunting the monsters with his lures while running to and fro. Unfortunately he was the second to last one to remain in the ring, therefore not making it to the finals, to the dismay of a few in the crowd.

    At the end of the event, after maps, regeants, gold, and a sash were rewarded, Tanaka and Eliar announced that another event would be taking place in Felucca next weekend. Apparently Lord Agnacio has constructed yet another arena.make that a series of arenas! You can find them opposite the Trammel fairgrounds in Trammel on the facet of Felucca. For those familiar with the Flying Fortress Events Tower, well...its basically right next door.

    Sleep well Citizens of Baja,

    Heculo

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:14 AM

    February 11, 2001

    The Wedding of Sleath and Mirabel

    Ursula posted the following to the Golden Brew message board, here:

    The Wedding

    Last night many of us gathered to witness the union of Sleath and Mirabel. It was a lovely night as the couple exchanged vows on a floatilla on the bay infront of Darkmor. I have made a wedding album containing the pictures I took.

    The Wedding Album of Sleath and Mirabel
    The wedding album site begins thusly:


    The wedding took place on a beautiful floatilla out on the bay infront of Darkmor.

    The Bride wore a dress made by Mariah. The skirt made of the finest silk in silvers and the silver bodice made of soft leather. The groom donned matching colors of purple and silver. The wedding party, also wearing designs by Mariah wore the colors of Darkmor.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:45 PM

    More Dungeons Discovered in Ilshenar

    I read the following announcement from Balberith of UO Deutschland at UOSS:

    More Dungeons Discovered in Ilshenar

    UOD has first inGame screenshots of a new dungeon that I have found travelling through Ilshenar today.

    The dungeon - I called it Spider-Dungeon - is leading to a small passage and then via teleporter to an island where theres nothing but Ethereal Warriors. They are not aggressive towards innocent. On the island is another dungeon - which I called Spectre-Dungeon - with quite some members of some kind of creature in it that seems to be buggy a little bit. It shows "a spectre" or "a shade" but has a look I have not seen elsewhere in-game so far. Close to the Spirituality entrance to Ilshenar is another cave that I have not seen before and since I couldn't find any information about it I think it is new - I called it Spirituality Cave.

    You will find some screenshots attached... and more (with german sub titles) on UO Deutschland and there in the screenshot section

    Viele Gruesse,
    Best Regards,

    Balberith
    Michael Werner
    Webmaster UO Deutschland
    Here's a picture from UOD of the teleporter to the Spider Dungeon:

    Posted by Nobody at 11:19 AM

    Tabletop RPG

    I read the following announcement at UOSS:

    Tabletop RPG "Ultima Ressurection" released

    A while ago I was contacted by Callisto, who asked me permission to use some of our statistical data as basis for an Ultima inspired tabletop RPG. Permission was given, and for a while I did not hear from Callisto. But now, several weeks later, Callisto is ready to present Ultima Ressurection. Here is some info on Ultima Ressurection, taken from the website:
    Ultima Ressurection - Return of Virtue - is a tabletop roleplaying game, based on the best-selling computergames Ultima Online and Ultima IX: Ascension. At this moment there are only few files available for download. Ofcourse there is the UR Gamebook with all the rules, backgrounds and other relevant information you need to play the game.

    Also there is a character sheet available for download. You may find it usefull since it has an easy to use interface ;)

    As time progresses I hope to add even more files to this section, including adventures, extra updates to the gamebook, advanced charactersheets if neccesary. If you are interested in participating in the creation of this, or have a cool adventure you've played and think it should be up here, see the help section.
    From the game's handbook introduction chapter:
    Welcome to Ultima Ressurection : Return of Virtue. The first tabletop role playing game based on the very popular Ultima computer game series and the MMPRPG Ultima Online. This is also my first real crack at writing a full fledged role playing game.

    Why did I decide to write this game, wasn't the computer game enough? No. Well, it's great. I'm a big fan of the series, I must have played all of the games at least 3 times and I'm still a very active member of the Ultima Online community I'm glad to say. But I also am a tabletop role player, so I know the benefits of a tabletop RPG against those of a computer based one.
    At this moment Callisto is looking for people to download and play test the game and then give some feedback on it. So, if you are interested in playing Ultima Ressurection, have a look and let Callisto know what you think.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:07 AM

    UBB Celebrates Third Anniversary

    I read the following announcement from Ysane, Guildmaster of the United Blacksmiths of Britannia, at UOSS:

    UBB Celebrates Third Anniversary

    Greetings fellow Britannians!

    I am writing this to inform everyone that the United Blacksmiths of Britannia will be having its third anniversary this coming Friday, February 16th. That's right, a merchant's guild that has lasted for three years!

    In the time honored tradition set forth by our founder Excalibur Bane, we will be holding a ceremony for any and all to attend the night of the 16th on the Atlantic Shard, Felucca Facet starting at 7pm EST. It will be held at our guildhall which is located inside the Britain guard zone at the Britain Blacksmith's Guildhall. Located just a short ways southwest of the West Bank.

    Food, drink and as much armor and weapons (among other things) will be provided. Most free, some...of course for sale!

    It will be a great night for the smithing community, as smiths from all the shards will converge on Atlantic for a night of celebration in the largest smithing center in the land.

    A list of events to come will be posted as they are finalized. Currently proposed events consist of Elemental Digging, Mining Rallies, Smithing Contests, Smithing Trivia and Obscure Info, Demonstrations on different styles of Armor Combinations.

    Local Chapters will be holding their own celebrations before/after attending the main one on Atlantic. Please attend both if you are able.

    More information to come as the suggested events finalize. I will keep everyone posted and up to date!

    Ysane
    Guildmaster
    United Blacksmiths of Britannia
    Grandmaster Smith - Siege Perilous Chapter
    ysane@ubb.org
    www.ubb.org

    Posted by Nobody at 11:00 AM

    February 10, 2001

    Last Man Standing Contest

    Seer Eliar came by today to ask us to spread the word that the Last Man Standing Contest will be this Sunday at 6pm PST (and every other Sunday at 6pm PST) at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds. She also said there will be a special annoucement about cross facet events that also will be held in the future.

    Posted by Thellaren at 5:32 PM

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Enquirer!

    We were sent the following from Tryon of ImaNewbie does Britannia:

    ***ImaNewbie does Britannia!***New Enquirer!

    Hail and Well Met!

    This week there is tons new to see. First off a new edition of the Britannia Enquirer. This week's Enquirer proposes a solution to the neverending housing issue. Two New Features: The ImaNewbie does UO3D section is designed to bring you news and screenshots of the 3D expansion to Ultima Online that is currently shipping in beta to thousands of eager UO fanatics. Next is ImaNewbie's Dictionary of UO/ICQspeak, a glossary of all the terms, slang and abbreviations that can confuse the hell out of anyone new to communicating online. There is also an Update on the ImaTown Citizen's Guild which has been growing like crazy on Pacific Shard. We are up to Seventy Members and counting. I have also spent a whole lot of time tweaking and improving some of the graphics and updating menus, etc. to make your stay at ImaNewbie a pleasant one :)

    ImaNewbie does Britannia

    later...Tryon

    Posted by Nobody at 1:47 PM

    February 9, 2001

    OSI: Comments from Warhau

    The following was posted to the Web Group section of the Ultima Online Web site:

    Comments from Warhau

    Hello from the web team! We have been busy working on several unreleased projects, and what you have seen, like registration forms for the UO Faire or for the UO3D beta, are just not that exciting. Today we finally have more cool web stuff to show off.

    We are happy to announce the release of online faction rankings. You can find the pages at http://town.uo.com/factions/. We now rank faction guilds and individual faction members based on kill points, by faction, by shard, and overall.

    Faction membership and kill points are also now indicated on MyUO paperdolls, character pages, and guild pages. Membership and rankings are updated daily.

    We hope this will bring even more enjoyment to the faction system by showcasing the best PvP guilds and players in Ultima Online today.

    Keep an eye out for additions to the factions pages in the future. Weve got more new stuff in the works.

    If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions regarding web features, please email me at www@uo.com.

    Warhau
    Web Manager
    The main Factions page is here, and Baja's rankings are here.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:46 PM

    OSI: Join us for Ultima Online Bi-Weekly Events

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Join us for Ultima Online Bi-Weekly Events

    Looking for a way to put a little excitement in your weeknight gameplay? Join us for Ultima Online Bi-Weekly Events! Beginning on Monday, February 11th, we'll be hosting an event every weeknight on most Ultima Online shards.

    Ranging from monster mashes to skill contests to PvP competitions, we've organized events to offer a little excitement for every playstyle. Each night, multiple events will run on two Ultima Online shards. While we want to make this fun for everyone, not all types of events will run every night. If you don't find an event to your liking, we hope you'll stop by the next week, or perhaps enjoy an event on another shard. To find information on specific events, visit your nearest in-game Town Crier on the shard's scheduled day for details. Events will begin at approximately 7:00 PM local server time and continue over the next month.

    A shard schedule is located at http://town.uo.com/bwevents.html, and we'll be opening a separate topic on the Ultima Online Message Boards for your feedback on the events.

    Please remember: Ultima Online Game Masters are not involved with these events and will be unable to provide you with any information about locations, schedules or event types. Please do not call Game Masters regarding these events.
    So, according to the shard schedule, Baja's event occurs during "Week 2", on Wednesday night, February 21st.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:32 PM

    February 8, 2001

    OSI: Last Chance to Join Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta

    The following was posted to FYI on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Last Chance to Join Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta

    Join us at 6:00 AM CST on Friday, February 8th for your final opportunity to grab an Ultima Online: Third Dawn beta CD! For the price of shipping and handling, you can own this limited edition, fully patchable version of the latest update to Ultima Online - and seize your opportunity to join us during our pre-launch beta period.

    We've limited the amount of Beta CDs available and will accept orders only until these CDs run out. Once this final group of beta CDs has been ordered, you'll have to wait for the Ultima Online: Third Dawn retail release to explore the new lands of Ilshenar, and all of the enhancements and updates that Third Dawn has to offer. Current customers will have an opportunity to upgrade to Ultima Online: Third Dawn at a reduced cost (plus shipping and handling) to be announced at a later date.

    Be sure to visit http://www.uo3d.com/beta on Friday morning for your chance to join the elite ranks of Ultima Online beta testers!

    And don't forget - if you're already a beta tester, or are planning to join us, drop by the Ultima Online store at http://www.uoshoppes.com/uostore to order your Official Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Tester t-shirt!

    Posted by Nobody at 6:53 PM

    OSI: Various Fixes And Changes

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Various Fixes And Changes

    A problem with players crashing when placing houses near server boundaries has been fixed.

    Holiday trees will be changed in the following manner:
    • Holiday trees that exist in tree form will automatically redeed themselves. The tree deed can only be picked up by the deed owner or the house owner (deed owner is the character that placed the tree originally).
    • The tree deed will decay in seven days if not picked up by the house owner or deed owner. No other characters can pick up the tree deed, until the house owner or deed owner has picked the deed up.
    • Holiday tree deeds no longer function to allow placement of a holiday tree, until reactivated again.
    Localization changes have been added.

    Stablemasters have been fixed to sell the correct creatures. A bug has been fixed with stablemasters and their pricing. This bugfix will result in higher prices for creatures sold by the Stablemasters.

    A change has been added to the tutorial, requiring new accounts to enter the tutorial at least once. After this initial entry, players will be able to exit the tutorial as desired. New players will also be able to review parts of the tutorial at will, via the help selection menu.

    A bug with runebooks not closing properly upon a players death has been fixed. This caused runebooks after the death to fail to open.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:50 PM

    OSI: Faction Trap Changes

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Faction Trap Changes

    Faction traps will be modified in the following manner:
    • Faction traps will award silver to their placer when they successfully damage or kill an enemy faction member.
    • The silver being awarded will come from the victim, and will be subject to existing silver-award eligibility. Thus, the placer will not receive any silver from opponents not eligible to award silver.
    • The trap will award 20 coins for damaging an enemy, and 40 coins for killing an enemy.
    Faction Trap Removal Tool

    Faction tinkers will be able to create a faction-trap removal tool. This tool will be necessary to remove faction traps set by enemy factions. The tool will function in the following manners:
    • The tool will appear within the tinker creation window, if the character is qualified and carrying the necessary materials to make the tool (500 silver, master or greater tinkering skill, and 10 ingots).
    • The tool will have 25 uses, decreasing upon either success or failure to disarm the trap. The tool must be in the base level of the players backpack to function.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:47 PM

    OSI: Good Creatures Attack Evil Karma

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Good Creatures Attack Evil Karma

    Creatures of good alignment will react aggressively toward players with negative karma. These new creatures are specifically being introduced with the release of Third Dawn.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:45 PM

    OSI: Player Owned Vendor Changes

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Player Owned Vendor Changes

    Player-owned vendors will be able to give the gold they are holding to their owners in bank check form if the amount is between 4999 gold and 1 million gold. If the gold amount being held for the player by the vendor is between 4999 and 1 million gold, the vendor will hand this to the owner in the form of a bank check (as long as the vendor is actually carrying this amount). If the amount is less equal to or less then 4999 gold then the vendor will hand the owner the amount in gold form. If the gold held by the vendor is more than 1 million gold, the vendor will retain the amount over 1 million gold until the next request for gold is made by the player.

    Player-owned vendors will give a more accurate description of their gold and payment status.

    Player owned vendors will properly clean up from a player-owned house, if they are removed from that house. This fixes a bug that caused player owned houses to sometimes refuse re-deeding even when empty.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:44 PM

    OSI: Item Identification Window

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Item Identification Window

    Information regarding an items magical or exceptional properties will now be displayed in a separate window. This separate window will allow for easier viewing of the items properties by players.

    The information display window will function in the following manner:
    • When a player clicks on a magical or exceptional item they will get generic text describing the item, such as magic longsword.
    • To the left of the text will be a blue button that will allow the player to get extended information.
    • To the right of the text will be a brief numeric display of the basic four attributes. Something such as: [Damage:Defense:Durability:Skill] would look like [9:0:5:10].
    • Each of these categories will be color coded to quickly identify the basic properties.
    • When the player clicks the blue dot (refer to above) extended information will be shown below the text being displayed.
    • This extended information will have category information and provide more detail, such as weapon effects and charge info.
    • This extended information will only show attributes that the item has, whereas the quick display at the end of the text will always show Damage, Defense, Durability, and Skill. They will be 0 on the quick display if not applicable, but will not show up at all on the extended info.
    Note: The Damage, Defense, Durability and Skill data will also be color coded here as well to reinforce the colors associated with the base attributes.

    If an item has not been identified, the quick display will appear as question marks: [?:?:?:?] and the player will not have access to the extended info until he has identified the item.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:43 PM

    OSI: House Decoration Tool

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    House Decoration Tool

    Players will be able to use a House Decoration Tool to assist them with the decoration of their houses within UO. The tool has the following abilities:
    • The tool will be sold on Architect NPCs
    • The tool has the ability to turn certain objects to face south-to-east, or east-to-south. An example of an object that is able to be turned would be a wall clock. Not all objects may be turned.
    • The tool has the ability to raise or lower certain objects, thus allowing items such as the wall clock to be hung on a wall. Not all objects can be raised or lowered.
    The tool itself operates in the following manner:
    • The player using the tool must be the owner or a co-owner of the house where the tool will be used.
    • The player must actually be in the house to use the tool.
    • When the player double clicks the tool, targeting the tool again with the target cursor will bring up a menu. The menu choices are turn, up, and down. This changes the operating mode of the tool to the choice that is made.
    • Upon selecting turn, up, or down, the player will be able to target an item in the house to apply that effect. The tool will remain in whatever mode was selected, until the tool mode is changed again (refer to above).
    • The player can either double click the tool again and then the house object to apply the last movement style chosen on the tool, or the player can use the target cursor on the tool itself to choose another movement style (such as selecting down instead of up).
    House objects being moved must be locked down prior to being moved, and will remain locked down during the Decoration Tool movement process.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:40 PM

    OSI: Taxidermy Kits

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Taxidermy Kits

    Taxidermy Kits will allow for players to use corpses of certain creatures to create trophy deeds, which can be used within houses to generate a wall mounted trophy.

    Taxidermy Kits will be found on NPC Tanners, usually found within leather and hide shops in towns. Only master and above carpenters can use the kit itself, as those without master or grandmaster status in carpentry will be unable to
    figure out the kits workings.

    A master carpenter is defined by UO as a player with 90.1 or above base carpentry skill (base skill, visible by checkmarking selecting show real in the skill window).

    The player will need the following items to create a trophy:
    • Taxidermy Kit
    • 10 boards
    • corpse of either:
      • Orc
      • Gorilla
      • Troll
      • Brown Bear
      • Polar Bear
      • Great Hart
      • Big Fish (note that big fish that have been stacked with other fish will not be useable by the taxidermy kit)
    When a player with appropriate carpentry skill and materials double-clicks the taxidermy kit, they will get a targeting cursor. This cursor must be targeted on the corpse of the creature intended to be the trophy. The player will need to be at the corpse of one of these creatures to successfully use the taxidermy kit. The taxidermy kit will disappear upon successful usage, and a deed for a trophy will be placed within the players pack.

    Any player attempting to place the trophy will need to have owner/co-owner status within the house. The trophy will need to be locked down to prevent decay or other players taking it. Double-clicking the trophy if it is not locked down will cause it to return to deed form in the players backpack.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:37 PM

    OSI: Armor dexterity penalty problem

    The following was posted to Testing For Next Update on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Armor dexterity penalty problem

    A bug with dexterity penalties not appearing on certain types of armor has been fixed. This fix will be retroactive and apply to all currently existing armor.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:34 PM

    February 7, 2001

    Baja Stress Relief Results

    UO Baja Stratics Forum dwellers recently organized a public event entitled Baja Stress Relief Night, which took 30-40 participants to dungeons such as Destard and Deceit. Here is a painting of some of the participants receiving their share of 300,000 gold that was distributed at the end of the evening:



    Posted by Thellaren at 12:56 AM

    Majere's PvP Event #2 (Trammel)

    Majere, a Baja citizen, has posted the following public event to the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    Hey all! im really happy to see the turn out lately on the events that have came up on the board here. Its good to see all your faces in the game instead of just here on the board.

    I am having another collective player vs player spar at my tower in felucca. The last event went perfect. Here are the instructions:

    *Place/time/event*
    We will be meeting at 8pm PDT sharp At MOONGLOW bank, Trammel. We will rally there until approximatly 8:20 then head to my tower via gate travel after taking the local moongate that is just outside of town. We will mass at my tower and have miscellaneous duels and spars.

    *Gear/Rules*
    You will be required to bring all of your own pvp gear, which includes potions, as well as gm armor and weapons. I will provide some potions and possibly gm armor if needed. (while supplies last)

    ---There will be no: looting, stealing, pking, or order chaos/factions fighting allowed, participants will be quickly banned and or killed on the spot.

    This event is simply a friendly spar and bs'ing chat event. Nothing is at stake here. I will be posting my next event as a tournament with prizes and entry fee's in the next few weeks, however this being my second event I wanted to simply have some fun with it.

    Everyone is invited. We had a good turnout at the last event so I'll be trying to arrange the roof of my tower to provide maximum room for the participants without sacrificing viewing rights of the onlookers.

    8pm PDT Sunday Febuary 11th Moonglow bank (Trammel). BE THERE!

    Majere


    Posted by Thellaren at 12:06 AM

    February 6, 2001

    THB Baja Clinic and Party

    The following was posted to the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    This past Sunday the THB had it's big conference on Baja and it was a great time. Trinity of the RoV did an ABSOLUTELY great catering job, as you can see from the following screenshots. People from the other shards that came over are still ICQing me telling me how extraordinary it was. Baja definately shined with class Sunday.

    We were well over an hour and a half late, and tables and chairs were starting to decay! Still, Trinity kept it all in order. Funny, but after all that work the hungry crowd trashed the place in 2 seconds.

    Let me publically thank Trinity again for the tremendous job. Go hang at out at the RoV tavern! Also, thanks to RazerWings for making the furniture (especially on short notice after it started to decay!)

    RedshiftDragon [aka Cypress of THB]

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:53 PM

    Expansions in the Kingdom of Dawn! (Felucca)

    The Kingdom of Dawn Town Cryer was recently heard relaying the following message from Vengence:

    Citizens and Friends of Dawn, I call for your aid!

    As the days roll by, Dawn's anniversary is fast approaching, and new expansions begin to take shape... the new Dawn Library (the largest player-run library on Baja) has been relocated, and will soon be open once more... the Dawn Center for the Arts (including a newer, larger version of the Royal Stage) is in the planning stages... and most importantly, the amazing Dawn Museum of Dreams, a project that has long been in the works for our fair city, will soon become a reality.

    But we cannot do it without your help!

    The Dawn Museum of Dreams, destined to become a huge display of wonderous and rare items found throughout Sosaria, is looking for donations and aid of all types, in order to meet its goal of holding its Grand Opening during Dawn's Anniversary. All people donating to the Museum in any form will be celebrated and thanked in a special Book of Dreamers, noting everyone who made the Museum a reality, to be seen for all time!

    Rare items in all forms, of course, are some of our most welcome and needed donations. Displays will note the person donating each item, so that all may know of their generous spirit. Gold donations (or donations of rare items we already have, that will be used for barter) are also extremely welcome, so that we might purchase more items for display from some of Baja's most noted merchants.

    But perhaps you are a simple craftsman, merchant, warrior, or miner? Your trade is needed, as well! Special "fundraiser" vendors will be established in the Dawn Vendor Mall, selling wares and items of all kinds at discounted rates, with all proceeds going to the Dawn Museum of Dreams! But we cannot stock our fundraising vendors without your donations!

    Anyone wishing to aid in this very special project should contact Vengence either via ICQ at #52681516, or via e-mail at vengenceofdawn@hotmail.com to arrange a pickup of your items.

    Thank you for your help!

    Vengence, Curator

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:17 PM

    Stonemason Spotted in Vesper on Test Shard

    The following observation from Leyf was posted at UOSS:

    Stonemason Spotted in Vesper

    Thanks to Leyf for letting us know about the addition of the Stonemason to round out the new NPC's found on the test shard called Test L10N. After checking it out it looks like almost every single type of flooring is now available. Included in the Stonemason's inventory is Marble, Stone, Brick, Sandstone, and a few others. Here's a quick pic to see a few examples:

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 6:55 PM

    The Dark Tower of Baja's New Board

    The Dark Tower of Baja now has a new Site PowerUp board. Please feel free to visit. The board's purpose is a place to announce Dark Tower information, and interact with the members and other interested parties.

    It can be found at the following address:
    http://www.sitepowerup.com/mb/view.asp?BoardID=127922

    Posted by Thellaren at 6:54 PM

    O.P.U.S. Archery Contest on February 10th

    The following announcement from Lord Dracon was posted on the home page of O.P.U.S, Baja's Blacksmithing Union:

    O.P.U.S is pleased to accounce they are sponsoring an Archery Event on February 10TH which is a Saturday at 2:00PM PST TIME. Free Gates will be available from the Britain Bank.
    Grand Prize: Valorite Heavy Archery Armor
    Second Prize: Gold Heavy Archer Armor
    Third Prize: Shadow Heavy Archer Armor

    Posted by Nobody at 6:49 PM

    February 5, 2001

    Ilshenar Dungeon Maps Released

    The following was posted by UOSS concerning the Ilshenar Dungeons from the Ultima Online: Third Dawn setting:

    Ilshenar Dungeon Maps Released

    Today we've finished the first set of Ilshenar dungeon maps. On these pages you will find detailed information on how the various levels of the dungeons connect to the outside world and to each other. Also you will find a detailed overview of the types of monsters that spawn at each level.

    Enjoy!
    Something that may be important to note here is that Ultima Online: Third Dawn is still in it's testing phases, and any details gathered during this time including creature placement, special features and even the geography of these newest lands may not remain as such by the time the final version is published.

    Posted by Nobody at 1:26 AM

    TOL / MT Tournament! (Felucca)

    The following announcement was found on the Order of Leonine Forum:

    TOL / MT Tournament!
    (The Order of Leonine and the Mage Tower)
    Saturday February 24th at 6pm PST at the Felucca Mage Tower
    Come test your fighting skills!

    There will be 3 events: Mage, Melee, and Anything Goes.
    Sign up is 1 hour before start time (5pm PST) at the Felucca MT.
    Rules will be strickly enforced!
    The rules for the 3 events are as follows:

    For ALL Events:
    No Looting
    No Stealing
    Both contestants MUST flag gray before match begins!

    Magery Contest:
    No potions, before or during match
    No bandage healing
    You are allowed ONE heal by magery only
    No magic weapons or armor
    No summoned creatures
    No area spells

    Melee Contest:
    No potions, before or durring match
    No magic weapons or armor
    No poisoning
    No healing of any kind

    Anything Goes Contest:
    No area spells
    No summoned creatures

    Donations for prizes will be gladly exepted.
    For more information contact Nitram,
    or Nekkar. Hope to see you there!

    - Lord Nitram
    GM of The Order of Leonine

    Posted by Thellaren at 12:33 AM

    February 4, 2001

    Important Art Discovery!

    The Fishing Council of Britannia recently discovered the myterious origins of "the orange painting." Below is their announcement, the original of which can be found here:

    Important Art Discovery!

    After months of research, endangering both his health and sanity, the art student Cats has discovered the truth about the small orange portrait. The story is exclusively told in the FCB library.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:36 PM

    Two Tools by Myrex

    The following was posted by UOSS about two new tools from Myrex:

    Two Tools by Myrex

    Myrex informed us about two tools he has available for download. We all know not to use any non-approved UO tools, but since these tools promote and are in keeping with the spirit of the Ultima Online product, community and value system we have decided to tell you about them anyway. Neither tool allows you to gain an unfair advantage over other players.

    The first tool is a UO Statcalc that allows you experiment with the bonuses Str, Dex and Int may have on hitpoints, mana and stamina in the proposed new stats system. The second tool is UO Commander, a tool that allows you to enter basic UO commands, such as "I will take thee" and "I wish to lock this down" at the click of a button.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:29 PM

    OSI: Seeking Ultima Online Love Stories

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Seeking Ultima Online Love Stories

    Love has a way of blossoming in the strangest places and at the strangest times, and we'd like to hear your stories of love in the world of Britannia. Did you meet your beloved on a warm Britannian evening? Perhaps your stealthy rogue slipped out of the shadows to find love with an upstanding warrior. Or perhaps you found a love that transcended the fiction of Ultima Online.

    Send us your stories of love and romance within Ultima Online. Tell us how you met your love, what drew you to them, or perhaps what you wish the future to hold. Whether your love stays within the confines and characters of Britannia, or if it moved to the 'real' world beyond, we'd like to hear about it.

    Send an e-mail to uo-profiles@uo.com by Friday, February 9th , and tell us a love story from UO. Please be sure your story falls between 500-1000 words. Be sure to put "Love Story" in your subject line. Please provide a name and phone number for verification of the story.

    Submissions to "uo-profiles" become the property of OSI and may be used for special events, promotions and/or advertising. All submissions must be made by the original author and are subject to verification.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:24 PM

    February 3, 2001

    Brand New UO3D Zoom-In Feature!

    Joshua Rowan posted this item into the Yahoo Groups Ultima Online e-mail list:



    It looks like UO3D will feature yet another incredible feature called Zoom-In with the use of either a Macro Key or a Wheel Mouse. I just went in to test it out and sure enough it is fully functional. To give you an idea on [the] range, the default Zoom is the normal UO view. From that, it zooms in to the point that your character is larger than even your Paperdoll. [Here is] what it looks like on the Full Zoom (my character is in the center). And just to clarify, this picture is taken at 100% in the screenshot. I did not zoom in with a graphic program at all. What you see in this image is the exact same size I saw it on my screen as I played:

    Posted by Nobody at 6:46 PM

    Mage Tower Dungeon Crawl Tonight! (Trammel)

    The Mage Tower unleashed a new site today as well as the following announcement for a dungeon delve tonight:

    Once again, the mists have cleared and a new gathering will take place. The ancient rune stones lay ready within the grand tower. Which stone will be selected ? Where will it take us ?

    To find out more, come to the Mage Tower in Trammel at 7:00pm(PST) this Saturday Night. One of you will be chosen, gates will open and we will be off. Click here for a map.

    Posted by Hazard [EiC] at 5:24 PM

    Last Man Standing Contest (Trammel)

    The following was posted to the Golden Brew Messageboard today:

    Tonight there was an excellent bout which included some of the most fearsome warriors and arcane mages throughout the lands. They fought all manner of creature within the ring at the Skara Brae Fairgrounds. Among which, most notably, were the Snow Elementals which seemed to dominate the tournament. All warriors fought bravely, yet, at the end, only one was to remain.

    Heartly congratulations go out to Morpheous who should be proudly wearing his new badge of honor (shown below) as he was, of course, the "Last Man Standing." 2nd place went to yours truly, Washburn, and 3rd place went to Larz. All winner received a nice, tidy sum of gold, two treasure maps (which Elder Tanaka claimed were from Seer Eliar's corpse... I didn't ask...) and a large quantitiy of regeants. Much fun was to be had all around and Elder Tanaka mentioned to keep an ear to the town criers o'er the next week as this is due to become a weekly event!

    Washburn

    Posted by Thellaren at 5:15 PM

    Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta FAQ

    I read the following at UOPowergamers:

    Melantus posted this on UO Discussions boards, might be of some use for those of you who ordered a CD.

    Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta FAQ

    Can a Third Dawn Beta CD be used for more than one account?

    Yes - if the all accounts are owned by the same person. Sharing a Third Dawn Beta CD with another person (account holder) is a violation of the End User License Agreement.

    I entered my address incorrectly when ordering my CD. How can I change it before my CD is shipped?

    You may change your address by contacting Dot Com, the company fulfilling our CD shipment, on or after February 1st, 2001. CDs will not be shipped until February 1st (EST). You may contact Dot Com via email at uo3dbeta@dotcomdist.com or via the toll-free customer support line at 1-866-277-7106. Please note: the email and telephone numbers are for inquiries only. You cannot order a Third Dawn beta CD by contacting Dot Com directly.

    I dont have a credit card. Can I join the UO: Third Dawn beta?

    No. We accept only MasterCard, Visa, AMEX and Discovery cards for beta CD payment.

    I was asked to enter my password on the order form. I thought you never asked for passwords?

    While we will never contact you directly to ask for your account password, there are certain instances where we require authentication that you are an Ultima Online customer. For example, both modifying your existing account and registering for a MyUO account require that you tell us your account name and password via a secure web page. However, you should never give out your account and password information on a website that is not located at http://www.uo.com or http://www.ultima-registration.com.

    For the Ultima Online: Third Dawn beta, we require this information to confirm that you are a current subscriber to Ultima Online.

    How can I cancel my order?

    You may cancel your order by contacting Dot Com, the company fulfilling our CD shipment, on or after February 1st, 2001. CDs will not be shipped until February 1st (EST). You may contact Dot Com via email at uo3dbeta@dotcomdist.com or via the toll-free customer support line at 1-866-277-7106. Please note: the email and telephone numbers are for inquiries only. You cannot order a Third Dawn beta CD by contacting Dot Com directly.

    After submitting my order I received a message stating that the server had timed out and I didnt receive my confirmation number. How do I know if my CD was ordered?

    Because of the high volume of traffic ordering beta CDs, you may not receive a confirmation number after submitting your order. As each Ultima Online account may only order a single beta CD, you can confirm that your order was received by returning to http://www.uo3d.com/beta and submitting a second order using the same account. If your original order was accepted, you will not be able to complete a second order.

    I live outside the United States, but have a United States billing address on my credit card. How can I order my CD?

    The form for CD orders from outside the US will now allow you to select US, Canadian, and Mexican addresses for credit card billing.

    I have multiple UO accounts. Can I order multiple beta CDs?

    Yes. If you have multiple accounts, you may order CDs on a one-per-account basis.

    I was a member of the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Alpha test. Will my CD work for the beta test? Can I continue to test?

    Yes. Both the Alpha CDs and the Beta CDs will patch to the final Ultima Online: Third Dawn release. If you participated in the alpha test phase, you are quite welcome to participate in the beta test phase.

    My friend managed to order a CD after you announced the group was full? How is that so?

    When each beta ordering group reaches 10,000 CD orders, we stop accepting any new orders for that group. However, we didnt want anyone in the middle of the process to lose out on ordering their CD. Thus any users who are in the midst of the order process are allowed to complete their orders once a group is full.

    My confirmation number started with (insert high number here). Thats over 10,000 - does it mean I didnt get into the beta test?

    If you received a confirmation number for your order, your order of a beta CD was completed. The confirmation numbers have no relation to the number of CDs in a beta group.

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    Ultima Online
    Melantus@uo.com

    Posted by Nobody at 2:25 PM

    Rug Merchants and Woodworkers Discovered!

    The following was posted to UOSS:

    Rug Merchants and Woodworkers Discovered!

    Thanks to a tip from Dopester and Michael, I headed to the Alpha 3D Test Shard to do some shopping. First I stopped by the Tailor shop in Britain. To my total and utter disbelief I came across an NPC Rug Merchant. And would you believe that she was selling Rug Tiles?!?! You've got it! Soon we'll be able to purchase rugs for our homes! Yes, they are at a premium price (from 6600-11000 GP's per tile), but well worth it in my opinion. The colors ranged from Brown to Green to Blue to Red. There were also several patterns to choose from, including edges.



    Next in my trip was the Carpenters Shop, also in Britain. And there I ran into an NPC Woodworker. Much like the Rug Merchant, she was selling tiles, only these were wood tiles. The good news is that her inventory included wood from Papua/Delucia. Pricing was about the same.



    As we discover more information we'll post it. For now, it looks as if there are no restrictions on who can purchase and who can place, but keep in mind that this is still on Test Center.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:07 AM

    OSI: Client Patch 2.0.7

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Client Patch 2.0.7

    We are targeting to release client patch 2.0.7 this evening. This patch contains additional localization files and will resolve text issues with shopkeepers and banking on the test shards.

    Please note: Once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.

    If you have any difficulty receiving this patch, please check the following:
    • Check the "Patch" directory within your Ultima Online directory (the default location is C:\\Program Files\Ultima Online\Patch). This directory should be empty. Any files in this directory should be deleted.
    • If you are unable to connect to the patch server at all, and are using an original (Non-T2A) version of Ultima Online, you may need to update your verinfo file. For details on updating this file, please see the information posted at http://support.uo.com/tech_6.html. Run a virus scan on your computer.
    If after trying the above, you are still experiencing difficulty patching the Ultima Online client, please contact Technical Support at tech@uo.com.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:01 AM

    February 2, 2001

    No Valentines Gifts this Year?

    The following post was made by Melantus to the UO Community Forums:

    I saw some posts regarding valentines gifts, and thought I would post something about them :

    We will not be giving out special items or having a special Valentines Shard for this Valentines day.

    While we enjoy celebrating holidays with our players, time constraints and work load can sometimes take precedence over holiday recognition. With work progressing on UO Third Dawn, Veteran Rewards and various bug fixes, we feel it is best to not add any other items to the current workload.

    Melantus
    Online Community Coordinator
    On another shard, Pacific in particular, players are taking the holiday into their own hands and creating mass quantities of red leather armor to deliver to the populace via "Valentine Cupids". See the UO Community Board above for details.

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:44 PM

    In-depth with LoDs MOP - Part I

    UO Journal posted the first part of an interview in a series with LoD's Minister of Propaganda, Ivan Magnes:

    I had the opportunity to sit down one on one with Ivan Magnes LoDs Minister of Propaganda. I cant disclose the location but lets just say Ivan is an extremely rich fellow. He also was very intelligent, confident, professional, and had the Classic LoD air of bravado. He projected that special unique aura of power that is a trademark of LoD Members. I was extremely impressed with what I learned about LoD. No question was left unanswered by Ivan. He started the interview.
    The whole interview by Durham Stargazer can be found at UO Journal here.

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:28 PM

    UOHoC Posts 62nd Chat Log: Ultima Online Third Dawn and General Discussion

    The Ultima Online House of Commons (UOHoC) has posted the complete log of their sixty-second Open House chat. The theme was "Ultima Online Third Dawn and General Discussion", and the entire log can be found here.

    Posted by Nobody at 8:26 PM

    OSI: Win a Copy of Ultima Online: Third Dawn

    The following was just posted to What's New on the UO.com website:

    Win a Copy of Ultima Online: Third Dawn

    Want to win your very own, hot-off-the-presses, copy of Ultima Online: Third Dawn? EA.com is giving you the opportunity to win, and score yourself a free year of Ultima Online: Third Dawn gameplay! And all you need to do is tell EA.com the top five reasons you deserve to be one of the first to own Ultima Online: Third Dawn. Stop by the "Top Five List" contest web page for official rules and instructions and send in your entry today. Be creative, be unique, and win!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:10 PM

    OSI: UO: Third Dawn Beta Signup Group 1

    The following was posted to the Common Issues page of the Ultima Online Web site:

    UO: Third Dawn Beta Signup Group 1

    The first group of Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CDs has sold out and new orders may not be initiated on the Beta CD order website at this time. The next Beta CD order period will begin at 3:00 PM CST.

    Posted by Nobody at 11:02 AM

    2nd tournament of Takhises

    The following was submitted to UOSS by Ariakan:

    2nd tournament of Takhises

    The Knights of Takhisis are hosting their second tournament on Saturday, the 10th of February at 11 EST. We've adjusted the time to accommodate our west coast participants, being that Baja is a west coast shard. The rules are as follow's:
    1. No pets, stables horses before you even come to the tower.
    2. All potions are allowed, except for explosion.
    3. DP is allowed, since mages can cast poison, warriors may poison their Weapons.
    4. No magical weapons, armor, jewelry, shields, or clothing of any kind, This includes wands.
    5. Any unorganized fighting will result in a ban from the tower and future events.
    The tournament will be held at the Tower of Takhisis. Gates will be sent from Moonglow [on Felucca], if you bring a rune we can mark it for you. The tournament is organized into 3 events. First, the warrior vs warrior event, where each fighter will have 1 on 1 elimination battles until only 1 remains. Our warrior champion will be rewarded a full GM suit of verite armor w/ heater shield. The second event is the mage vs mage series of battles. Each mage will contend in a 1 on 1 battle until only 1 remains. The winner will be rewarded a full colored suit of GM leather armor w/sandals. The third event pits our two victors against one another in a finale bout of mage vs warrior. The winner of the final event is rewarded with 50,000 gold and 750 faction silver. To enter the tournament you must pay a bid of 3,000 gold to either Ariakan or Lady Lexie of the KoT. Hope to see you all there.

    Lord Ariakan, Dragon Emperor and Keeper of the Tower

    Posted by Nobody at 12:54 AM

    January 31, 2001

    Brotherhood of Valor Recruiting

    We were sent the following announcement from Midian of the Brotherhood of Valor:

    Brotherhood of Valor Recruiting

    Hail!

    I am Midian, Guild Master of Brotherhood of Valor and Tiberian Knight. We are actively recruiting new members to our guild. We are a guild based on friendship and honor. We believe that there is much evil amongst us in Britannia and we will do what is within our means to rid the world of this evil. Our goal is to develop friendships that will last lifetimes based on trust and honesty. We will strive to align all virtuous and good guilds so we can band together to attain each other's goals. We act as the light that shines on these ever so dark times. Our strength is our strict following of the Virtues put before us by the King, and those written by the famous philosopher Tiberius. By following the virtues it brings us guidance to our lawless land. It is also our duty to aid all people who are young and new to this land in any way that we can. I will not lie to you for this is not the life for all we live by a strict code that demands teamwork, dedication and loyalty. But if you feel like this is path you wish to take, the path of a valiant knight, or maybe a fearless mage please visit our website, or send a pigeon to the address listed below. I wish thee safe travels.

    Fare thee well,

    Midian
    ICQ - 106564674
    Email: "brotherhood_of_valor@yahoo.com"
    Website: "http://www.geocities.com/brotherhood_of_valor/"

    Posted by Nobody at 8:27 PM

    OSI: Publish Update Jan 31

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Publish Update Jan 31

    We will be publishing the design changes and bug fixes listed in Testing For Next Update to all of the remaining shards. This publish will be active on the shards following regularly scheduled maintenance based on the schedule below, barring any unforeseen downtimes.

    Thursday, February 1st (local server time)
    Yamato, Wakoku, Asuka, Izumo, Hokuto, Europa, Drachenfels, Catskills, Lake Superior, Great Lakes, Napa Vally, Baja, Sonoma

    Friday, February 2nd (local server time)
    Siege Perilous, AOL Legends, Oceania, Arirang, Balhae, Formosa

    These shards may experience an extended downtime on during their maintenance periods on these days while we finalize the publish.

    All changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.

    Posted by Nobody at 7:30 PM

    OSI: Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Status

    The following was just posted to FYI on the UO.com website:

    Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Status

    Orders for 20,000 CDs are still coming up for the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Test! We experienced some technical difficulties and heavy load when opening the first group this morning, but have been optimizing the site to help alleviate the issues during groups two and three. The next opportunity to order a beta CD will open at 3:00PM CST. Stop by http://www.uo3d.com/beta for details and to order your CD!

    Posted by Nobody at 7:28 PM

    OSI: UO: Third Dawn Beta and UO.com

    The following two items were posted to the Common Issues page on the Ultima Online web site:

    UO: Third Dawn Beta and UO.com

    Due to high demand for Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta orders, the UO.com website is currently experiencing an increased volume of traffic which may affect load times in some areas of the website, including the beta order form. If you are experiencing delays loading the UO: Third Dawn beta signup form, we recommend waiting a few moments and trying again. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
    The sign-up information can be found here.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:21 AM

    OSI: Baja Shard Issues

    The following two items were posted to the Shard Issues page on the Ultima Online web site:

    Baja Jan 31 2001 1:23AM CST (GMT -06:00)
    Due to server problems, the Baja Shard is currently unavailable . We are currently working to resolve this issue and expect the shard to be available in approximately .5 hours.

    Baja Jan 31 2001 2:08AM CST (GMT -06:00)
    The Baja shard returned to service and is now available. We apologize for any inconvenience this interruption may have caused.

    Posted by Nobody at 10:20 AM

    Freedonians Land South of Trinsic

    Freedonian forces, led by El Cid himself, landed south of Trinsic near El Cid's ancestral home, the Tower Grym Slaed. They were immediately assailed by harpies, trolls, ettins, ogres and giant spiders. These were quickly dispatched and the ruins of the tower claimed. Onlookers, including the wandering healer Benedict, were moved to tears as El Cid knelt at the grave of his mother, still strewn with flowers and untouched by the power of Minax. "Its good to see the boy come home," Benedict later remarked. "now perhaps things can be set aright in these parts." Reconstruction of the tower has already begun.

    www.crosswinds.net/~freedonia

    Posted by Nobody at 8:48 AM

    January 30, 2001

    Wedding of Baron Sleath Von Darkmor and the Lady Mirabel of Heaven's Forge

    From the UO Baja Calendar:

    Event: The wedding of Baron Von Darkmor and the Lady Mirabel. Reception and dancing to follow at the Darkmor Tavern.
    Sponsor: Darkmor & the Town of Heaven's Forge

    Time: Feb 10 2001 6:30PM PST - 10:30PM PST
    Location: Gates from Ring of Steel Guild Tower (Trammel)

    Details: The wedding at sea will begin at 7:00 p.m. PST. Please arrive at the Ring of Steel Guild Tower (in the valley south of Dungeon Wrong) prior to this time for gating.

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:43 PM

    Strange Sighting

    The following sighting occured over a week ago. This report was made on the Ring of Steel public messageboard:

    While things were winding down in the wee hours of this Saturday morning, a strange occurance appeared just south of the entrance to Wrong.

    My father, Phaltran, was working at his tinkering bench when it occured, and he related the story to me.

    "Young Aragorn came a running yelling 'Come quick and see what appeared!'" Well being curious the lot of us, Mirabel, Sleath, Rakhir, Joram and myself took off after the scamp to see what the commotion was about.

    "To our wondering eyes we saw what appeared to be a room, dropped right on the edge of the mountain. It seemed to be an armory for there were weapons along its 'walls' and good fighters standing all about.

    "We didn't gawk long for immediately our group was set upon by a handful of brigands. I'm no fighter, but I was in good company, so I helped out with a swing of my trusty hatchet here and there to hobble those meanies.

    "Soon all the evil baddies were dispatched and we were allowed to examine the 'room' more closely. Dang if it didn't appear to be so much curtains, a large stone altar and lots of decorations of shields and weapons.

    "Rakhir and I debated whether or not the brigands came with the room, or if they just happened to be camped in the area. I think twas a bit of both. We find out if'n this happens again.

    "At least I kept my wits about me. I immediately pulled out a notepad and piece of charcoal with which I captured the likeness. When I returned to the tower I applied a few tinctures to the drawing as I recalled. See for yourself."

    Darius, GM for Ring of Steel

    Posted by Thellaren at 11:25 PM

    Baja Stress Relief Night (Trammel)

    The following announcement was posted by Chance on the Baja Stratics Forum:

    This is the official announcement of Baja Stress Relief Night, hosted by the Baja S|S.

    Time: Sunday, February 4, 11pm est/10pm cst/9pm mst/8pm pst.

    We'll be meeting up at the Skara bank in Trammel beforehand, and promptly at the appointed time we will be gating to the BK (Bone Knight) room. Our objective: kill every undead in sight, regardless of who thinks it is 'their' kill. No healing, In Loring, curing, or ressing of non-event personnel will be tolerated, no matter how loudly they demand it. S|S folks, you are not required to bring your thief char, you can bring a warrior type if you'd like. I will bring my thief simply because S|S is hosting the event.

    If we have enough people, multiple parties will be formed, with one designated 'looter' per party who can carry off all the loot from corpses so the killing types don't have to worry about it. We'll be taking the loot not so much because we want or need it, but because we don't want to just leave stuff lying around for other people to help themselves to. Gold will be divvied up afterwards for those who care, junk weps/armor from the BKs will be smelted and ingots divvied up between those who want them.

    If we REALLY get a lot of people, we will expand and take over one or both of the lich rooms on the next level down.

    So, bring your silver weapons, your pent-up frustrations, and an extremely bad attitude, and we'll see you there!

    Chance of Baja

    Posted by Thellaren at 10:39 PM

    OSI: Join the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Test

    The following was just posted to What's New on the UO.com website:

    Join the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Test

    We are pleased to announce the opening of the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Testing period. Come join us in testing the brand new look and feel of this latest version of Ultima Online.

    We will be opening the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CD Ordering site at 6:00 AM CST on Wednesday, January 31st. CD ordering will be available in three groups of 10,000 CDs. CDs will be available for the price of shipping and handling, and you must have an active Ultima Online account in good standing to complete your order.

    Details and schedule information may be found at http://www.uo3d.com/beta.

    Please remember, this is a closed beta period with a limit of 30,000 CDs. Additional opportunities to beta test this game will be available in the future.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:07 PM

    Just wanted to point out

    There is alot of news I saw at UOSS: UO3D Beta coming and Veteran Rewards pushed back are the highlights. Go get 'em newsjockies! :-)

    Posted by Nobody at 2:41 PM

    Crawl to the Star Chamber

    The Mage Tower and the Order of Leonine recently journeyed into the Terathan Keep on one of their famous crawls. Visit the Mage's Library to view the story in its entirety.

    Posted by Thellaren at 1:00 AM

    Majere's Pvp Event! (Trammel)

    The following successful event was thrown by Majere, put together for all the folks at the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    Well let me first start off by thanking everyone who came out. My tower was packed with about 15+ people. Im honored to say the event even drew our moderator Scarlet Thief. We had many people from the boards here make the event including "Chance" "Rov Trinity", "DRKM", "Redshiftdragon", "foolkiller", "derek valkry", "sheepgoat", "willow", "razerwing"...and many more that had a great impact on the event. I thank all of the people that i named here and i know i left people out but i have a very bad memory. Everyone was very nice and we had no problems. The event started in style.

    For more information on this event, proceed to the Forums above.


    Posted by Thellaren at 12:09 AM

    January 29, 2001

    Trinity's Tavern Grand Opening (Trammel)

    The following announcement was made earlier today on the UO Stratics Baja Forum:

    The event will take place on Saturday Feb 3 at 1 PM Pacific Standard Time. The Tavern is located just North of the Britain Pass on the Tram facet. (I've provided a map) at the coordinates 28o 18'S 34o 14'W.

    I will be providing free ale and fish steaks to all who show and we might have some doorprizes and/or contests of some sort. I'm guessing I'll be giving out around 60k in cash prizes.

    So everyone come on out and eat and tell stories and maybe win some gold. The menu is below, and I should have some vendors stocked with other things you might need (recall scrolls, GM armor and weps, etc.). Also I'm gonna try and have "Happy Hour" on a weekly basis...free fish steaks and all liquor half price. I'll have a bard available to tell stories and gives everyone a chance to just relax and chat with some others. I'll post the times when I'll have Happy Hour!

    If you plan on coming please reply to this message so I know how much stuff I need for the event, my guild should be in attendence as well. Also invite all your friends and guild members as well!

    Thanks guys!

    Trinity

    Posted by Thellaren at 9:33 PM

    OSI: Intermittent Connectivity and Latency Issues

    The following was posted to the Shard Issues page on the Ultima Online Web site:

    Intermittent Connectivity and Latency Issues

    We are currently experiencing issues with our network that may cause some intermittent connectivity or latency issues. We assure you that we are working diligently to correct this.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:59 PM

    Return of the King

    The following was submitted by Arrianna to UOSS:

    Return of the King

    Arrianna stood on the roof of the Mage Tower in Dawn. She waited for the rest. Desmond was to be brought to her, and many were relying on her to exorcise that which seemed to be possessing the King. She was nervous, to say the least. She considered herself a simple student of the virtues, not a leader of them. Oh how she wished Arakthor was here! He would know exactly what to do! Instead, it was up to her, and many hours of study she had devoted to understanding and mastering the ritual needed to drive the spirit from Desmond. But one slip, one mistake, and the results could be catastrophous.

    Will Avengem entered the arena on the roof. Behind him was Queen Hayloh, who was comforting a distraught and angry Desmond, his wrists and ankles in shackles. A tear formed in Arrianna's eyes to see her King in this manner. But she had herself asked for these precautions. His life and hers were at stake. She wished it wasnt necessary, and would gladly forfeit her life for his, if it were that simple. But it was not.

    Behind the King, came Opalescense, Quest Knight of the Virtue Compassion. Followed by Vengence, historian and long time friend of the King. And then Kryn Garamonde, also a Quest knight of the virtue Justice, as well as squire in the Order of the Blue Rose, in the Kingdom of Dawn.

    She offered them each a smile as they moved to surround Desmond in a circle. Arrianna directed them to each stand at a specific point. Arrianna herself stood as the one of faith, her back to the north. Opal, one of purity and innocence, her back to the south. To her right was Kryn, one of strength in will and body, his back to the west. And Vengence, one of wisdom and knowledge, his back to the east.

    Queen Hayloh and the Prince Riain looked on with others of the Kingdom, and friends, as Will Avengem took up a guard position to make sure none interrupted the ritual. Arrianna raised her voice to proceed, hoping to gain confidence from the strength of her musical voice.

    She began the weaving of the spell, by reciting the meaning of the virtues, their place in this world, and more still, their place in King Desmond. Desmond shrieked with rage, calling to those watching to aid him, proclaiming that Arrianna was the one possessed. Possessed by Na-Krul. But she wavered not. The spells power infused King Desmonds body with raw energy derived of the virtues themselves. Culminated from the principles of Love, Truth and Courage. The spirit waned and struggled to free itself from the pure virtuous magics. But it lay trapped within Desmond with only one escape...the bracelet from wence it came.

    *Arrianna continued, as Vengence added his words, recalling the counts of Desmonds life. Of his wife and dear child. Of the kingdom that loves him dearly. Desmond, the true Desmond began to stir from within. The spirit was enraged and cornered. It was then, that Arrianna directed Opal to make contact with Desmond. The touch of skin allowing the spirit a new host to flee too. And so it did, but too late did it realize its mistake. For Opal was one of purity. her body, mind and soul, uncorrupt, and worse for the spirit, uncorruptable. There was naught to control within. A body of pure goodness. The spirit was enraged further. Opal was stunned, as she tried to block out the whispers of evil intent the spirit threw desperately at her. But it would avail him not at all. For the spirit was dying, and Opal was too pure.

    Again, Arrianna directed, Kryn this time, to make contact with Opal. Once more allowing the spirit an escape. This time to a body that was not pure, so it was inviting to the spirit, and thus was taken. Once inside, Arrianna entered Kyrns mind, telling him how to harness the strength of his mind and the power of her words, to separate from the spirit, that which was Desmond.

    Putting the evil in one orb of blackness, the good into one of pure bluish light. One belonged to the spirit of the demon, the other, was a part of Desmond that must be returned. For if a part of Desmond were to die, so to would part of the land.

    Kyrn bellowed in anguish, the task at hand was testing the boundaries of his physical and mental strength. Many watched silently, others prayed for him to outlast. The Queen and Prince watched in horror and hope, as Arrianna continued. As both orbs of dark and light were beginning to wane. As a candle flickers in strong light, Arrianna held forth the bracelet, as she slipped it from Desmonds wrist. The spirit fled to the one place it was safe from the magics Arrianna and the rest had conjured to vanquish it. Into the bracelet. She then took Kryn's hand in hers, accepting the light into her, that she could bless it, and mold it back into shape and form that Desmonds weakened body could accept. She then moved to Desmond, taking his hands in hers, staggering under the taxing spell, she transferred the light into Desmond.

    A hush reigned at this moment, and all eyes were on Desmond. Had they been successful? Did the spell work? Or were they wrong all along?

    Desmond finally broke the silence, asking where he was. His memory of all that had transpired since Na-Kruls resurrection was a void of nothingness. Vengence replied that he was in Dawn, among friends. Asking the King who was his wife, Desmond replied to his old friend, "Hayloh, of course!"

    A sigh of relief erupted from the crowd of concerned citizens and friends, as they took this as a positive sign. Arrianna collapsed back into a chair, exhausted from the spell, smiling softly as her King was returned. Rejoicing and celebration went long into the night at the Acropolis, and peace reigned once more in the Kingdom.

    Posted by Nobody at 6:01 PM

    tDw FAIRE SUMMARY AND PICS!!!!

    Thorin Orcrist posted the following results of The Dark Wardens Faire which took place last night in the Skare Brae Fairegrounds on Trammel. The original posting can be found on the Dark Warden's message board, here.

    tDw FAIRE SUMMARY AND PICS!!!!

    Hail fellow citizens,

    First off, the Dark Warden's would like to thank all the citizens that came out to join us in Last Night's Faire. It was a rousing success!!! Many people came and enjoyed drinks and food. and many more won prizes and saw amazing spectacles, There were booths for vendors and tamers selling All sorts of mounts and services at discounted prices. A Gambling booth, and a fortune teller for everyones amusement.

    The contests featured a mighty show of mastery over the bow by many of our patrons, and a show of speed in our horse races, as well as a show of intellect and cunning in our Scavenger Hunt and Puzzle games. All in all many prizes were won and food and gold exchanged hands.

    Winners of the archery contest included:
    Pat Mcgroin Buddy, Dove
    HardKore SlindBlade

    Scavenger Hunt Winners:
    Pekkle, Strider, and Nightmare were among the many winnners...
    The Faires Puzzle Contest Winners are:
    1st: Badola Blazo 25k gold prize
    2nd: Kryos 15k gold prize
    3rd: Cortez 10k gold prize

    The Horse Race winners included:
    Beo Van Bur Vinras Nightmare
    Beast Wars:
    The highlight of the night though, was the suprising turn out for our "Beast Wars" a series of fierce bouts as tamers from all over their lands brought forth their fiercest dragons and nightmares to face off in a battle to the death!! And for the crowds amusements bets were made on each bout much money was won and lost as spectators cheered for thier respective fighters...... Match Highlights included:
    A Last minute comeback in a Dragon vs. Dragon Match

    A Fierce Wyrm vs Dragon Match

    A Handicap Match 2 Dragons vs one White Wyrm

    and the Main Event, a Nightmare vs Nightmare Match
    While it was a sight to see, some question the value of pitting such majestic creatures against one another to the death, but folks it was all for the sake of entertainment.

    And overall the Faire was a success!!! We hope to bring you more fun and enjoyment in the future....

    We like to wish our thanks to the DoV, UTB, tDw, and the FaireGrounds Keepers for their support and contributions for making this night a memorable one!

    we'd like to hear your opinions and comments:

    please feel free to visit us or write to us here:

    HomePage: http://www.tinyonline.com.hk/~gromit/uo/tdw/
    Msg Board http://www3.bravenet.com/forum/show.asp?userid=ue82640
    E-Mail: drkdragon25@yahoo.com
    Event Pics: http://www.geocities.com/drkdragon25/tDw.html

    Posted by Nobody at 5:57 PM

    Virus Warning

    The following warning was posted to UOSS:

    Virus Warning

    It has come to our knowledge that people are sending trojan backdoors via ICQ and email to UO players, claiming they have a house for sale. The file in this particular case is called LordRoni.zip and contains a file with a very long name: "SELLING MY HOUSES IN TRAMMEL AND FEL!!!!!!!!", then lots of spaces to hide the file extension, and finally the extension ".exe". If you open the zip file you will not see the file extension. Double-clicking the harmless looking filename will then install a backdoor program on your PC, which will give *anyone* *complete* access to *all* your files via the internet. Needless to say, you don't want that to happen.

    Should you be the victim of this scam then please visit the McAfee website where you can find detailed information about this trojan and more importantly info on how you can remove it from your system. We advise everyone to have a proper virus scanner active at all times, and of course never accept files from people you do not know or do not trust.

    Let's be careful out there!

    Posted by Nobody at 5:40 PM

    The Corporation Accosts Lum the Mad (Part 2 of 2)

    The Corporation has posted part 2 (or 2) of their interview with Lum the Mad, formerly of the site of same name. The introduction to Part 2 is below, with it's entirety found here and Part 1 found here.

    Editor's Note: Welcome back! We now return you to the Lum Interview. Today's section is entitled The Revenge of the Wombat, and What Lum Wants. Here too, you will finally understand why we said to hell with posting an interview, and just posted the chat log. No one, not even Shakespeare, could have made this coherent. Never ever put lots of game writers into one small room.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:33 PM

    January 28, 2001

    The errors are fixed

    Rich was able to correct the news display errors, and is looking into ensuring it doesn't happen again. Thanks for your patience.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:26 PM

    Some articles have been displaying incorrectly

    Some Freeborn Press articles have been displaying incorrectly, including being out of order (as you may have gathered from the context of some). Please bear with us while we look into correcting these issues.

    Posted by Nobody at 5:04 PM

    UO: Third Dawn Gesture Video Clips

    The following was posted to UOSS:

    UO: Third Dawn Gesture Video Clips

    With great pleasure we present a set of movies that shows a selection of the different type of gestures one can make in the new UO: Third Dawn Client.

    Enjoy!
    The movies subsite notes about some software particulars:
    The movies that are available for download here have been compressed with a special codec that can create small video files while at the same time maintaining a very high image quality. To play the movies you will need the Wind