1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Greetings Guest!!

    In order to combat SPAM on the forums, all users are required to have a minimum of 2 posts before they can submit links in any post or thread.

    Dismiss Notice

The Snake Gods and Their Chosen: Ultima VII and the Banes of Chaos

Discussion in 'UO White Stag Inn' started by WarderDragon, Jul 20, 2010.

  1. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    The Oracle said this could never happen. She said that the Great Old Ones were chained beneath the Pillars of the Earth. But I see the evil that haunts mens dreams. The evil that stirs them to madness and murder.

    The Worms of the Earth - ancient and evil abominations of some prehistoric epoch - have arisen from their millennial slumber to ravage the world and drown it in blood and fire. These eldritch horrors - Old Gods worshipped by the insidious snake cults of savages and evoked in the cannibalistic rites of the Ophidians - are stirring. They haunt mens dreams and send our strong into fits of gibbering madness. They have gathered their Chosen to them.

    Your doom is at hand, Warrior. Pray for strength. Or pray for the mercy of a quick death. Your worst nightmare is about to come true.

    What the hell are you talking about this time?

    We've entered the Age of Armageddon. We've entered the Saga of Ultima VII.

    (See Ultima VII: The Black Gate. Ultima VII: The Forge of Virtue. Ultima VII (Part 2): Serpents Isle. Ultima VII (Part 2): The Silver Seed.)

    As described at TVTropes.org:
    "Ultima VII Part II is a PC game released in 1993 by Origin Systems. It is considered one of the best games in the Ultima series besides its predecessor: Ultima VII...Eighteen months after the events of Ultima VII, Lord British finds out that the Guardian has sent Batlin to a place called the Serpent Isle. Fearing the worst, he sends the Avatar, Iolo, Shamino, and Dupre after Batlin to find out what they are up to. As the Avatar and his/her companions search for Batlin, they quickly become involved in the Cosmic Horror Story going on behind the scenes."

    Ultima VII is widely considered to be the darkest title of the series.

    What would make you think this is Ultima VII?

    The Bane Chosen and their connection to the Banes of Chaos in Ultima VII: Serpents Isle.

    Bane Chosen. Banes of Chaos. One is a group feared to be associated with Chaos. The other is the manifestation of the Great Chaos Serpent.

    Coincidence? I think not.

    If that is true then we can infer that the Story of the Bane Chosen is true. The loss of ones family would weaken even the hardest of men; making them ripe for the corrupting influence of a Greater Evil.

    The Serpent may very well be reaching out and touching their dreams. Corrupting them and twisting them to his will.

    You can read the rest of the discussion here.
     
  2. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    The Banes in Serpent Isle were the raw manifestations of their antivirtues, Wantoness, Anarchy and Insanity (contrasts with the virtues of Disipline, Ethicality and Logic.)

    The Chaos Serpent is NOT evil in any way shape or form. (Play SI and you will understand)


    If Mythic has chosen to connect UO to the events in SI they have done it in an unbelievably poor way. Is it possible, yes - though not probable at this point.
     
  3. Cear Dallben Dragon

    Cear Dallben Dragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2005
    Messages:
    2,005
    Likes Received:
    17
    i already believe they have stated the two are in no way related.
     
  4. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
    Stratics Veteran

    Joined:
    May 24, 2008
    Messages:
    6,528
    Likes Received:
    2,914
    Well done! Looks like we could have some interesting stuff happening soon.
     
  5. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    You're right. Not evil at all.

    Bane of Wantoness

    "The Bane of Wantonness represents acting without self-restraint and was imprisoned in the Temple of Discipline. It was the first Bane to be ultimately trapped by Batlin and his men.

    After its initial release from its Temple confines, it had possessed Gwenno and driven her to ambush an encampment of Hazard's men in the frozen north, slaughtering most of them before they were finally able to kill her. Following this, the Bane was captured by Batlin in association with slaying a "Beast of Ice."

    When Batlin was later killed by the Banes' further escape, Dupre fell to possession and transformed into the Wantonness Bane. At first he led the Goblins against Monitor, opening the gates and enabling them to enter the city and slaughter the inhabitants. He then set upon the Inn of the Sleeping Bull and massacred all occupants in a fit of rage before taking up residence in the Castle of the White Dragon with the two other Banes."

    Bane of Anarchy

    "The Bane of Anarchy represents a lack of standards of conduct and was imprisoned into the Temple of Ethicality. Anarchy was captured second by Batlin's men.

    It would seem a possession by the Bane of Angus of the Inn of the Sleeping Bull came to light while Batlin and his gargoyle servant Palos were lodging there. After a commotion, they pursued him far north to the ancient city of Skullcrusher, where they were able to kill him and catch the Bane.

    When Batlin was later overpowered and killed by the Banes, Shamino was possessed and became the ruthless Shamino the Anarch. He preyed upon the city of Moonshade, usurping the position of the Mage Lord. Abolishing any kind of law, he watched with glee as mages killed each other, while slaughtering the inhabitants without magic and turning the Magister Fedabiblio to stone. With virtually none left alive, he, like his two counterparts, retreated to the Castle of the White Dragon."

    Bane of Insanity

    "The Bane of Insanity represents an inability to overcome emotional impulses with rational thoughts and was imprisoned in the Temple of Logic. Insanity was the last to be captured by Batlin, having possessed Cantra well after the Avatar's arrival on Serpent Isle. The sage cornered her in Shamino's Castle, where he managed to kill her and catch the Bane.

    When Batlin fell to the Banes' subsequent escape, Insanity possessed Iolo and he became Mad Iolo. He appeared in the city of Fawn, gloating over its citizens' idealistic worship of Beauty. He unleashed plague and vermin, while massacring all inhabitants with the exceptions of the hitherto estranged, disfigured Ruggs and Lady Yelinda, whom he skinned and left alive with the taunt that only the Avatar could prove whether beauty was skin-deep. Finally, he retreated to the Castle of the White Dragon to reunite with his Chaotic brethren."

    I suppose it is a matter of perception. You wouldn't consider a lion evil just because it attacked and killed a man. But a murderous tyrant would be no less evil because some bard decides to tell the world he was actually a noble and misunderstood figure.

    The Chaos Serpent might not be Evil. But his parts are. And what does the essence say about the whole?

    I'd like to see that. I've been looking for hints on who the Bane Chosen might be since this storyline began and nothing has been said that I'm aware of.
     
  6. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    Nice work, WarderDragon. I posted something similar to this a while ago, but I couldn't find it under my "view posts". Or maybe I started writing it, but didn't post it for some reason.

    UO, for all the similarities to Ultima, when you get into the details, fails miserably to adhere strictly to the Ultima lore. But that's the way it's supposed to be. Our universes within the shards is supposed to be different. And it wouldn't be any fun if all was predictable due to adherence to something that was already played and become known.

    My biggest issue has been that there is no way to "play out" these mysteries. We can never find the answers in game. We have to wait for the story to reveal to us what happened and happens.

    I'd like to see UO get more into the game play. Develop ways to hide things in the game world and ways to reveal the hidden and lost (according to our story). There should be new books added with clues. New secret places that require some special means to access, and within these places found answers. I've made many suggestions in the past. It's all things that can be done. Yet they won't do that. Evidently because every player has to make the same discovery or it's not "fun". So we lose out on interesting events in the world, and interesting game play, because not being the first person to make that discovery isn't "fun" enough. You can't have a race, because that means someone wins, and we all must win the same things. The journey isn't good enough, therefore static boredom rules. Interest can only be in the form of the stories they tell. And it's just not good enough.

    Edit: I have to edit this. Because some things have been done like this. The torch that leads to Ricardo's prison in the Terranthan Keep, for example. That was good. We need a lot more of that.
     
  7. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    I have no objection to them taking some liberties with the tale or going in a new direction (i.e. new villains or new stories) so long as that new direction is consistant with the Ultima Universe.

    Skara Brae hasn't burned down in Ultima Online. We've not had a Dark Tower or a Liche named Horance. Because that has never happened; Caine won't enter into a state of nihilistic despair and morose self-loathing. He shall never announce to Batlin that there is no meaning to life and death. Batlin will never embrace a certain level of solipsism and turn to the Guardian in his search for meaning.

    Something so insignificant as a village burning down or not burning down has a butterfly effect that could have a significant impact upon the Storyline. We've taken a step back in time. There is no Lord British. Blackthorn. The Avatar. The Companions of the Avatar never become Companions. The Dark Mistress still lives. Exodus is biding his time. The difference between the two stories is and should be significant.
     
  8. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632

    Again, this is why I said you should play Serpent Isle so you understand what actually happened. This article has been taken out of the larger context of the game and you are misinterperating it.

    The Banes that the Companions were posessed by are NOT parts of the Chaos Serpent. The Banes are what arises due to Imbalance, they are three of the Anti-Virtue counterparts of the Ophidian Virtues.

    Read this page for a better understanding.
     
  9. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632

    We are also still in the Ultima VI - Underworld I era (as stated by Draconi last summer), so those events are still in UO's possible future.
     
  10. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    Could Lord British be the Order Serpent and Blackthorne be the Chaos Serpent? British wishes to enforce Order on Britannia. Blackthorne Opposes. British departs. Blackthorne goes insane and makes a mad grab for power. He is killed (Chaos Serpent is torn apart). British returns and feels no reason to continue his Quest (Order Serpent feels no reason to exist).

    Queen Dawn mentions the Bane Chosen resemble the Legions of Chaos; the remnant of Blackthornes Forces. It is a more symbolic twist but it would fit the lore.

    If the Bane Chosen are thematically tied to the Banes of Chaos - which is the essence of the above theory - then the Chaos Serpent has already been torn to pieces and the Imbalance War has long since passed in some distant land. And I think most characters are going to interpret this 'Imbalance' as an Evil.

    We don't know what happened in Ilshenar (Serpents Isle? See full theory at the White Stag Inn) before we arrived. We don't know if the Ophidians of Ultima Online share the religion of the Serpents Isle Ophidians. There is a lot we don't know.

    Last Summer. Who knows what point we're at now? There is no False Prophet. There doesn't appear to be a Codex for us to steal.

    At some point we're going to be moving onwards into the Guardian Saga. That is unless we're moving in some new direction.
     
  11. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    Massive supposition there.

    Just because they (Bane Chosen & the SI Banes) appear to have superficial connections doesn't make it a reality. Theories and speculation are fun, but don't beat what few "facts" we have into a shape that fits what you want it to be. Right now we have few facts, and the fiction has been very unevenly written the last few months. Either Mythic is being very coy, or they really don't have a clue how to fictionally take us where they want to go.

    As for what Draconi having said 'last summer,' uhm the man led UO fiction for years and had things plotted past the end of the Shadowlords. EA ruined those plans with corporate greed and a complete lack of understanding for all things Ultima. There has been very little forward progress on the metafiction front from Mythic this year; what little has been done has been led by people who admittedly do not know Ultima or UO history. I'm not willing to assume we have somehow arrived at the Ultima VII timeframe, especially since we haven't even officially seen all of Ter Mur or restored Magincia.

    We just left Ultima V last September and are IN Ultima VI/Ulderworld I now. Ignore the proposed (and now on hold) revamp of factions and the poorly named ‘Guardian’s Legion.'
     
  12. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    I'm neither a Ultima apologist or a religious devotee to its precise canon. Nor do I claim to be an expert. Just tossing out thoughts for discussion.

    I seriously doubt half of this theory to be true. But who brought up the Oppression and the Resistance of Ultima V last year? No one. Draconi never implemented it. So it never happened.

    The purpose - and my hope - is that they'll read these discussions and take a look at Ultima Lore. Or are you content with: "what little has been done has been led by people who admittedly do not know Ultima or UO history."

    So then what do we do in Ultima VI - Ultima Underworld I? (Tel Mur fits with the motif of the Labyrinth of Worlds which was in Ultima Underworld II; which is post-Ultima VII according to my limited understanding.)

    And I've never paid much heed to the faction changes. The developers said those were temporary names. And even if it is the Guardians Legion; roleplayers have been prophecying the emergence of 'an Avatar' and 'the Guardian' since UO emerged to fill in for the fact that we've never actually seen one.
     
  13. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    The EMs implemented it. It happened on GL and quite a few other shards.



    Heh. No. I'm not content with it. Hence why I blasted the terrible Lost & Found, Part 3 and its complete disregard for UO's history. Lets hope they do pay attention to us.


    Ter Mur is the gargoyle land from Ultima VI. The Stygian Abyss is the dungeon from Underworld I.
     
  14. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    Gargoyles in Ultima are located within the Underworld. Gargoyles in Ultima Online are located on a world completely separate from Sosaria.

    What happens in Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds? "The Player as the Avatar descends into the sewers beneath the castle, where a strange, big jewel is found, enabling travel to other worlds. These worlds have already fallen prey to the Guardian, either conquered or outright destroyed. The Avatar weakens the jewel by turning the Guardian's own magic against it and cutting its magical supply lines, while searching for a way to break the dome in the end. Just when the Guardian starts a invasion from Killorn Keep through the jewel, led by his champion Mors Gotha, the Avatar has found the solution. Killing Gotha in battle, the Avatar and Nystul manage to break the dome with the Horn of Praecor Loth, sealing the gateway between the worlds."

    (Do I think the above jewel was the inspiration for the Crystal of Duplicity? Probably not. Would it be neat if they read this and connected the two through future fiction? Yes.)
     
  15. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    Sigh. No. That is wrong. In Ultima VI you travel to the land of the Gargoyles. It looks very similar to Ter Mur, and was in fact 'another world.'

    In Underworld II you travel to completely separate worlds which indeed have been conquered by the Guardian. So far, this has NOTHING to do with Ter Mur.


    The Crystal of Duplicity is powered by a shard of the Gem of Immortality, and has nothing to do with the blackrock "gem" from Underworld II.

    Please, go play these games.
     
  16. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    Because I'm more interested in discussing the lore and learning (as opposed to being right); I'm going to put you on the spot Martyna.

    What do we do now? What happens in Ultima VI and Ultima Underworld I?

    The impression I have is that the Abyss and Tel Mur are going to remain fairly static. The Slasher of Veils has already been released; so I don't see us saving Arial. And unless they intend to destroy all the housing put there; Tel Mur isn't going to be destroyed, meaning we're going to succeed where the Avatar failed.

    So aside from the Rebuilding of Magincia; what stories and plot points are left for us to complete? (That is assuming that all this talk of Snakes, Ophidians, and Banes is completely coincidental.)
     
  17. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    So far, we have a world (UO) that is relatively similar to how Sosaria Prime (mainline Ultima) was after Ultima V. The events of Ultima VI can't happen as they did in the Prime timeline since A) we have no Avatar and B) the gargoyles don't blame us for the fact that Ter Mur is falling into abyssal goo (calling that the Void is just silly).

    The Underworld/Abyss itself is a pale imitation mix of Ultima V and Underworld I - lets hope they someday add another level with more interesting things.

    Plotwise: UO Sosaria is still recovering/rebuilding from the Shadowlord's near victory. We should be focusing more on Magincia rather than another round of 'kill the baddies, get a trinket' (especially when the fiction surrounding the event, so far, is tissue paper thin). We should be focusing on building relations with the gargoyles, including bumps along the way, and gaining access to their entire continent (we are still missing the SW "island"). Heck, we should be working on relations with Tokuno too (no, NOT ToT IV) - especially since we have never seen their Empress.

    If this Bane Chosen plotline has anything to do with the mythology of Serpent Isle (Ilshenar in UO), it has been presented rather poorly and very out of context. Personally, I think it’s just a half-assed name that Mark thought sounded cool. Moving swiftly into SI territory is a bad idea. If the Bane Chosen are something new, unique to UO, then that is a GOOD thing – and how it should be. We need a period where the metafiction is distinctive to UO.

    We have yet to move to a period where any of the events of Ultima VI would feel natural, or logical. And honestly, I don't have enough faith in Mythic's story-telling abilities to convincingly bring about any kind of interaction with the Guardian and not have it come off as clichéd or a hack job. The Guardian could be introduced as an interdimensional being that was the motivating force behind the Shadowlords, their master as it were. He wants to gain control of the copies of Sosaria bound up in the shards to gain power in the Prime universe (so he can invade Britannia Prime and kill the Avatar). UO just isn’t ready for the Guardian yet.

    Let’s see Exodus and Minax permanently dealt with first (at the metafiction level), before we move further along the Prime storyline. (If thoughts regarding the last bit of fiction we recieved are true, Exodus should be the returning evil.)

    Now, aside from the metafiction, the EMs should be the ones driving the story arcs on the shards. Great Lakes has a rather complex arc going on, one which has been steadily progressing with an event every week now since November (Royal Spies). In fact, there has been a weekly Spy event on GL since March of ’09 – and that’s where the resistance to Casca and the Shadowlords occurred.
     
  18. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    And what makes you think that?
     
  19. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    As Galen Knighthawke posited, and Cal confirmed, the last story contains a reference to reference to Harlan Ellison's 'I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream.' The antagonist of that story is a psychotic, malice-filled, self-aware supercomputer called AM who is responsible for the genocide of humanity. (The original Skynet.)

    Exodus is a supercomputer with the 'soul' of a daemon. As Galen also mentioned, Exodus enslaved the Ilshenarian gargoyles for an unknown amount of time - perhaps long enough that Ter Mur has some knowledge of the event. (Or the two gargoyle civilizations are now in contact and shared history books.)

    We never defeated Exodus... Since that plotline abruptly ended, we don't truly know if what is in the temple in Ilshenar IS Exodus, or just a network node. His reach, according to the Ultima Prime fiction, extended beyond Britannia to the other shattered continents - who's to say he didn't have another node or a backup copy ready to unleash his wrath on Sosaria in the 'future'? What better way to see the tactics of your enemy then to test their strength in a battle they were meant to win. He/It sits back and watches our actions, what what we do for a victory, and afterwards - all the while adjusting and adding to his/its real plans for conquest/enslavement/genocide...


    We know that Mondain is long dead, though pieces of him remain. Bringing him back, aside from being clichéd, would require time travel and a caliber of author well beyond Mythic's budget.

    Blackthorn is also dead and buried. I doubt Lord British would have accepted the wool being pulled over Sosaria's eyes, regardless of their past friendship. However, he was part machine.... So... He could have pulled a Terminator "I'll be back..." at the end. But, as with Mondain, I openly express my doubt at the likelihood that the fiction would be up to snuff.

    Minax is about a threatening as a newborn kitten and hasn't really been a major player for quite a while. She seems more inclined to be concerned with her Mary Kay wh0re makeup than really being evil. (Killing your own staff and going "Muhahahaha!" doesn't count...) Minax's potential was played out years ago, and the character was pathetically squandered on factions. Could she make a comeback? Yes, if done right and she was killed off at the end of the arc. Seriously, why should we let villains live to cause harm in the future?

    The FoA. *sigh* This group of terrorists is running on fumes. The Shadowlords used them to divert Britannia's attention and kill the Ruling Council. Other than that, we haven't heard from/of them. They were a weak foe to begin with, another squandered opportunity. Could they make a comeback? Yes, if there was a decent fictional lead up and in-game evidence of their resurgence.

    Shadowlords.... Uhm, way too soon.


    That covers the main metafiction Big Bads of the last 13 years. Dredging up a minor villain would take more fiction then they have produced so far. However, I would like to know what Kabur has been up to, where Sudiva went to, and why the Strangers/Crimsons just vanished.

    I would also like to know the status of the good guys as well. The Companions are from Earth, so they age very slowly. Aside from Geoffery, what are the rest of them, doing? (Two are dead, Jaana and Julia I believe.) Also, what of Dasha, Adranath, even Sherry's friend Lady Aileen? (Aileen is STILL stuck under the floor of Castle British...) Furthermore, why not send Inu toddling off back to Zento to annoy her own countrymen with her three-year-old insane ramblings about what has now come to pass?
     
  20. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2004
    Messages:
    2,756
    Likes Received:
    689
    I still reckon, if it's not just an oversight by someone being careless, that the range of statues at the Ter Mur 'museum' are a sign of that - they include Blackthorn, Exodus war machines, various creatures found in Ilshenar, Malas and the 'elven' dungeons..... there's been a LOT of contact between Ter Mur and the other facets.
     
  21. Prime.

    Prime. Sage
    Stratics Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    Messages:
    737
    Likes Received:
    74
    lol! I wouldn't put it past Mythic to read this and be like oh ****, why didn't we think of this?!

    =p
     
  22. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    So explain to me the presence of the Great Serpent Mural in the Tomb of Kings that mediates between the Flame of Order and the Flame of Chaos.

    Coincidence? Or something present in Ultima VI?
     
  23. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    Its most likely a silver serpent mural as they were important to the gargoyles in Ultima VI. However, it would make sense for the Great Earth Serpent (GES) to be recognized by the gargoyles of Ter Mur, especially if they had contact with the inhabitants of Ilshenar in antiquity.

    BUT: The GES is always depicted as being laid out straight, not all curvy. Hence, it is probably a silver serpent.
     
  24. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    Then I assume we agree on the theory that Ilshenar and Serpents Isle are one and the same.

    So explain to me the significance of the Silver Serpent to the Humans and Gargoyles. I remember reading something about a silver serpent warding off a creature that would have otherwise assaulted Lord British; and that its venom is a drug used by Gargoyles.
     
  25. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    Yes, completely. I figured it was the Lands of Danger & Despair when I saw that Montor was there, along with the serpent motifs... and the rather obvious 'wall of lights' in one of the dungeons (not that I can remember which one). This is using the original pre-Meer/Juka history of course.


    As for the silver serpents, there was a story about one and LB back before he was a king - I think. The main difference for Britannia and Ter Mur, I'd say, is that the gargoyles were in more direct contact with them than we were. (They weren't 'introduced' until The Second Age outside of Seer events.) The venom is a drug for whoever takes it, imbuing them with strength, speed and battle fury...and them making them a weakling during the nasty withdrawals. The peeling skin was just an added bonus... :gee:

    Both cultures obviously revere the serpents, using their likeness in various significant ways. (Carvings, the Britannian Royal Seal, factions, etc.) There isn’t a lot of official UO fiction regarding them, so it’s up to us to fill that gap.
     
  26. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    I never interpreted the pre and post-Exodus fiction (or rather Ilshen and the Meer) as being incompatable. I've always heard it described as a 'retcon'; but the two histories just take place at different time periods and Exodus is the same great evil that the exiles of Montor bound beneath the World. (I'm sure this is the same conclusion you've come to.)

    And it makes even more sense - Serpents Isle - that Exodus would have been located there considering his manipulation of the Great Earth Serpent in Ultima III.

    Garriot didn't incorperate the symbolism at random. Alot of Ultima Fiction is well researched and based on real world mythology and history. But I couldn't tell you - not without more information - what the serpent might be representative of.

    There is the Serpent as the Deceiver; i.e. Book of Genesis and the Epic of Gilgamesh. The Serpent as a Protector; i.e. Asiatic Religions. The Serpent as a Cosmic representation of Infinity; i.e. Ourobouras and the Norse World Serpent. The Serpent as a Phallic Representation; i.e. Masculinity. The Silver Serpent isn't represented as biting its own tale else I would suggest the connection between the Virtues (Infinity) and the Serpent would make sense. And as a protector would make sense when we consider the similarities between Virtuism and Buddhism.

    And most of these mythologies share one thing in common. The Serpent is usually rooted at the bottom of a World Tree. (i.e. Serpent waiting for Eve beneath the Tree of Knowledge; the World Serpent gnawing on the roots of Yggdrasil in Norse Mythology.) It is not a part of our lore but I could imagine if they wanted to give a point to the Heartwood and actually make it interesting they could go back and develop such a tale; perhaps connect the Elves to the Zealans of Pagan.
     
  27. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    I would agree with the connection between the Silver Serpent and Infinity, though that may be a retcon Ultima lore is full of retcons to make it 'work' for subsequent games.


    The ugly airport strip mall that is Heartwood needs to be redone, tying in other serpent lore may be a good way to do it.
     
  28. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    I actually suggested a retcon in a previous thread that would tie the poorly concieved Mondains Legacy Expansion (Elves and Heartwood? Bleh.) with Ultima Lore.

    It would make sense. (Sort've.) We know the Elves of Heartwood to be associated with Balance and Nature. Heartwood is a World Tree; a sort of Axis Mundi in the vein of Yggdrassil and the Sephirot. The Tree is also perpetually divided into Four Seasons; while there exists Four Titans of the Elements. It would be a twist on the tale but it would be far better than what we have now.

    I've also suggested (numerous times) that Malas be tied to the Land of Dark Unknown (Luna and the Labyrinith corresponding to Olympus) and Eodon being retconned to be a location on Sosaria rather than Earth and tied to the Lost Lands. (The UO Ophidians would therefore be tied to the Sakkarah Snake People of Savage Empire.) There is alot of potential to revisit these lands using the lore of previous games and expand upon them.
     
  29. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,052
    Likes Received:
    632
    Ehhh.. I'm not in favor of continuing the retcons, its a lame way to build or fix clumsy fiction.

    Pagan/Morgaelin should be left as another planet, not a part of Sosaria - a la the other worlds in Underworld II. Sure it could be a missing continent, but there was never any evidence that it was.

    I'm also in favor of leaving Malas another land as well, though I'd like more fiction regarding it. Same with Ter Mur.

    Eodon has sorta been squished into Ter Mur already, as there were no raptors in Ultima VI. Again, however, I'm not in favor of putting that on Sosaria because it added a bit to Earth's history in relation to Ultima.

    In fact, I'd like to see the current facets beefed up and made more interesting. Each facet needs some reason to go there, aside from Fel's laughable Risk vs Reward.

    A four-seasons Heartwood could be cool, and something that wouldn't require massive new art resources to do.
     
  30. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni BRPA

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,688
    Likes Received:
    69
    I'm not sure how the presence of raptors makes Tel Mur reminiscent of Eodon.

    The Lost World and The Lost Lands. Sakkhra and the Ophidians. Myrmidex and the Terathans. Serpents and Bugs at war with one another. You have to admit it makes sense that either the two are one and the same or the creators of the Lost Lands were inspired by Vale of Eodon.

    As for Morgaelin? I'm familiar with the theory that it might be a lost continent. But I still think a major change to the lore of the Elves - one that differentiates them from the pastiche of Lord of the Rings and Dungeons and Dragons Lore we so often find in other MMOs - would be a step in the right direction. Perhaps a unique racial name? A culture that we don't usually associate with fictional elves? The Zealans and their Sacred World Tree would be a perfect canidate.

    It would create a darker element to the tale; suggesting that perhaps the elves choice not to aid us in our confrontations with Minax and Exodus is a direct result of their being manipulated by an evil power like the Guardian or the Shadowlords. Perhaps the Elves worship the Guardian or the Elemental Titans? Perhaps Heartwood isn't even on Sosaria; but is the first piece of access we have to another world? It means changing one word on the Mondains Legacy Webpage.

    It might be wishful thinking. But it is better than what we have now; elves running around refering to themselves as the Tel'Quessir and worshipping Corellon Larethin.