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Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, future

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Evlar, Jun 15, 2010.

  1. Evlar

    Evlar Guest

    A great deal has happened to Ultima Online over the years, though opinions differ on changes, as to them being good, bad, or downright ugly.

    Current UO is a much different beast to what we began with all those years ago. Some of us see the evolution of UO over the years, through different dev teams as being good, whilst others either don't like the changes, or simply have left altogether.

    There's always been people suggesting that the game is about to die... yet here it is still, regardless of the lack of obvious promotion and support from EA over recent years. It's the oddball that's defied all logic, that still hasn't given EA a good reason to shut it down yet, as obviously it's still making a healthy profit. After all, bigger titles than Ultima Online have been shut down by EA, that most would assume are bringing much more coinage into their tills.

    So... just interested to hear people's thoughts in general.

    Does current UO still have a future? What keeps you playing and what will keep you playing in the future? If you're no longer playing, or playing as much, what pushed/pulled you away?

    Do you prefer the game as it is now, or as it was in previous publishes? What was your favourite "era" or expansion of UO? What would you like to see in the future?

    What do you make of NetDragon in China, acquiring the rights to make a "new" 3D version of UO, working with EA/Mythic, which will apparently use Ultima history, lore and characters? Could this have a positive effect on UO as we know it now, or could it be the last salute for the isometric 2D game we've grown accustomed to?

    :popcorn:

    PS... no bickering and such here please... this could be a really good discussion. :)
     
  2. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Out of curiosity, name one.

    While the "name" of The Sims Online might have seemed bigger, the game itself was not. Earth: Above and Beyond was not. Motor City Online was not. Whatever that mystery game that tanked... was not. Warhammer is not (though, in fairness, it also hasn't been shut down yet).

    Nothing larger than Ultima Online in terms of MMO success has been shut down by EA because -- even though they still don't know or understand why -- Ultima Online has been EA's largest MMO success to date.

    SW:KotR has potential. Of course, since EA now owns it, that potential's not really something I'd go so far as to describe as "good."
     
  3. Evlar

    Evlar Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Well RaDian FlGith, TSO isn't a bad example, all things considered. Compare the success of the boxed stand-alone versions of The Sims as a brand "name" at the same time as that of the "name" of Ultima Online. Ask anyone on the street about Ultima or about The Sims and you'll clearly find a hugely disproportionate number of people who "know" The Sims name, over those knowing Ultima Online.

    Aside from that though, the online content for many of the "big" EA Sports titles has been cut, which although providing only small income streams, were enjoyed by far more users than UO currently enjoys, but could have been exploited better to increase revenue.

    But hey, EA is always a bone of contention with their decisions in the eyes of gamers.

    What are your thoughts towards the questions in the OP relating specifically to UO though?
     
  4. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    The Sims came on a lot of new computers for several years as a free version, with an option to buy. Otherwise, few would have known what it was.

    The future isn't very bright. What you see out there happening is where MMOs are going. Evercrack dumbed down, coupled with Free-to-Play hooks, lines, and sinkers.

    Anything more artistic and socially evolving is lost under the weight of the masses and their desire to be given what they want. Or just charge it.
     
  5. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    If they let Bioware's team handle it and keep their grubby little paws off and don't try to call the shots, that potential goes from good to Farking Awesome...

    You seen the E3 Cinematic Trailer for it yet? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQf1nas8BO4
     
  6. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    That's fantastic. But you know that the game won't be like that. It'll be more level grinding, quests, instances, and the race to get to "end game" for...end game.
    It should be entertaining for a while though, they do have some interesting things.
    But I'll be wondering why my Jedi can't use one of those jet packs. Or take cover even half as well as those other guys.
    At least they are giving you a little bit of slack on those puppet strings.
     
  7. Nexus

    Nexus Site Support
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    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Yea I've watched a lot of the game play videos Bioware has released.. The game does look good though. Yes from what I can see it's a lot of grinding, but at least it's driven towards getting you immersed in the game right away. Another thing from the game play videos that look interesting is instances and a characters path on a quest can be triggered differently by the responses given in interactive cut scenes as multiple players take part in the same cut scene together. Say if two people are in a cut scene, at different points each one will get to respond to portions of it, but not both at the same time.
     
  8. Tukaram

    Tukaram Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    The game is fine for me right now. They have the EC running very well. I like the looks of the old 3D LBR era better, which was right before they changed so much of the background to match 2D. It seemed to be done as an enticement to get 2D'ers to go 3D (like that will ever happen). Everyone has their opinions on what looks good and it isn't worth arguing about.

    I also prefer the game right after Pub 16. But I am still having fun so it's ok.

    The flexibility of the EC macro system is awesome. I can do almost everything easier than I did with UOAssist. The only thing I want added to the interface is the skill tracker like UOAssist had, showing each skill gain and loss for the session. But that is just an informational thing I miss. We can put so much more info up I really can't complain.

    The future of UO is the same as always... it's going to die withing 6 months! You know it has been on it's last legs since 1997. I'm sure there must be a cut off number of subscribers we have to get down to for them to pull the plug. As long as they are still working on the game then we ain't going anywhere for a while. This Dev team seems pretty responsive so I think we are in as good a shape as ever.

    But we really need to each get one friend to play and see how that works out.



    This one looks good though. (A bit old but still good)

    http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/zero-punctuation/9-Tabula-Rasa
     
  9. Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Two minor points (with a caveat of course)

    Caveat: re: "size"
    need some actual verifiable numbers (which have never been public fo UO ... btw)

    what >has been< shut down
    http://www.ea.com/2/service-updates

    what narrowly >missed< being shut down:
    near miss that is ...

    just saying ...

    Is MJ still fighting the good fight?

    :gee: Hmmmmm ???



    oops!!!
     
  10. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Well, I agree with you there. Save, of course, one might wonder what happened with Warhammer. *chuckles*
     
  11. maroite

    maroite Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Bioware didn't touch Warhammer.

    That was Mythic.
     
  12. Jhym

    Jhym Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    ...
    Um, TR was shutdown in early 2009 because the owners decided it wasn't worth keeping six server farms running.

    It was a fairly good mashup game, but needed much less level-restriction items and more sandbox questing.
     
  13. Jhym

    Jhym Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    I think they'll keep UO running until EA is approaching bankruptcy. And then they'll spin it off for the cash anyway.

    They did most of their up front costs before EA bought the whole thing, so EA effectively got a steady money machine for very little up front investment (other than paying Garriott to go away.)

    The biggest problem I see is that the history behind the games isn't always examined before storylines and items are introduced. So you get oddities like the Blackthorn-Exodus castle stuff that really doesn't match anything in Ultima that well.

    It's really been a problem to get the developers to find, build and stick to a consistent long term story and plot line. Admittedly UO is somewhat outside the plots of the various Ultimas, since we are all inside the shards of the gem of immortality; however they keep trying to bring in further events from the other ultimas without exactly linking them to events in OUR worlds.

    An example would be the Magincia invasion, that really wasn't linked to any specific events for the most part. We just suddenly had attacks by various types of Daemons, exploited by players for their own purposes (ie deco). There weren't attempts by Britannian forces to do anything useful, nor were there visible attempts by the "evil" folks to do anything. Just a lot of unfocused fighting that ended up being people focusing light daemons onto buildings to get crap, almost like looters pointing a tornado at a Best Buy to get a few TVs.

    The current UO is fine; for the supposed "classic" bs, I see it similar to people who seem to think the middle ages were full of people waving tankards of mead and eating haunches of meat while dancing around in tights.

    I'd have no problem with them changing Felucca to hide all the item parameters that they seem to have issues about -- but otherwise I see "classic" as equal to wasted development efforts that could go towards FAR more important things.

    Like a better client, or at least fully completed artwork, for instance.
     
  14. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Both of which are presently owned by EA.
     
  15. Babble

    Babble Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    UO is a niche game and as long as EA decides to keep the servers open has a future....

    But will it ever grow and such things then no.
    Turbine at the moments tests the free to play waters with big games.
    DDO I think trippled revenue after going free to play and LOTR foes free to play this autumn.
    There is no way UO can gain marketshare with their graphics and payment schedules.

    I still love UO because of the freedom and what you can do, but for my money I expect a bit more entertainment than UO gives.

    The netdragon stuff is probably a generic asian grinder though it will most likely be free to play and be EA' best cance to keep the Ultima franchise alive
     
  16. AesSedai

    AesSedai Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    - EA bought Origin Systems Inc. in 1992 (on the original UO box it says that Origin is owned by EA, but they did a good job of hiding that...).
    After that Garriott approached EA with an idea and they agreed to fund the initial development of the UO project.
    I cannot recall EA ever selling one of their IPs.

    There are plenty of things I have disagreed with regarding EA, but I feel it should be known that they were the ones to green light funding of the idea that became UO.
     
  17. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    This is true. And furthermore, once EA saw that UO was going to be big, they started pumping funds and assets/production resources into it.
    It's on Raph Koster's site, I'll look for it and link if I find it.
     
  18. five oclock

    five oclock Guest

    Re: Classic UO, Current UO, NetDragon "3D" UO... A discussion about past, present, fu

    Honestly it comes down to this...there is no such thing as gravity..UO just sucks you back in...

    people leave for awhile..then come back..then leave again..then come back..

    Others like myself stay and then take a break or computer falls down and goes BOOM..BUT I still keep my accounts open...I come back..play for a bit then leave again..

    Again for the montly sub..Its still a heck of alot cheaper than a movie nowadays...Just a movie too..Not all that other fun stuff like popcorn and soda and so forth..

    Seriously tho..If EverQuest is Still around...UO will be around alot longer...and still collecting the days as being the longest online game of all times..

    yeah the graphics are not that good...and the bugs...But thats normal for this game..we live for it..we thrive for it...UO is not going anywhere soon. It may lose players...But those players always come back :D play for a bit..find old friends..bring back old friends..then leave again...But they always come back :D