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[UO Herald] New Fiction: A Time of Mourning

Discussion in 'UHall' started by UO News, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. UO News

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    Slowly Sherry climbed up upon the table bearing the marble coffin. Within the coffin held the body of her beloved friend Dawn. Tears slowly ran down into her whiskers as she curled up in one of the flowers that adorned both sides. She could not believe that Dawn was now dead. It was just moments ago it seemed, that she had confided in Sherry, telling her of the plans of the sword and how hopefully it would work and Virtuebane would be eliminated.

    She had spoke of her concern and love for Ors, why he had not been found. How she wanted to lead a search for him, but her kingdom needed her in this time of unrest and chaos. She had chosen to lead her kingdom and eliminate the oppressive foe, and yet it had been she that had taken the final blow, by her husbands hand. He who had been under Virtuebane’s spell, and he who had taken his own life after being released from his mind bond, after seeing his beloved wife lying at his feet, dead from his hand.

    Through the evening, Sherry watched as people from all lands, came to pay respect to Dawn. She watched as Dasha, Dawn's close friend, had come in, laid her her hand gently on top of the Marble coffin and softly spoke a prayer in the ancient language of the Meer. She saw Queen Zhah walk solemnly toward the coffin, her great head bowed. She gently lay her taloned hand upon it and spoke softly, " Your death will not be forgotten, Your enemies become my enemies,Your death shall be avenged by your countrymen and friends. Fare well Queen Dawn". Following Zhah Sherry observed Uskadesh Zhah’s Minster of War lower his head with a slight smirk on his face, Sherry thought to herself what a strange reaction.

    All through the long evening Sherry watched and stayed by Dawn's body. Too saddened to leave the one person who had believed in her. What the coming days would bring, she did not know. Exhausted from her tears, Sherry curled up next to the coffin that held her friend and Queen, Dawn the Valiant, and slept.




    More...
     
  2. kentuckyjoe

    kentuckyjoe Seasoned Veteran
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    "Following Zhah Sherry observed Uskadesh Zhah’s Minster of War lower his head with a slight smirk on his face, Sherry thought to herself what a strange reaction."

    Well, I guess we know who is playing the role of Casca this time around...lol.
     
  3. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    As a storyline filler, not bad ideas, but as written English - bloody hell, that's shoddy....
     
  4. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    I called it.
     
  5. Adol

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    No... just... no. Whilst debate amongst some of my friends has accepted this would explain the frankly dumb behaviour of the Gargoyle Queen (she did after all suggest going openly and en-masse to the Shrine), Chekhov's Gun still holds true... don't just stick one up on stage in Act 2 if you've not foreshadowed it in Act 1; and that holds doubly true for characters, because that's where the audiences attention is most likely to focus, on the personal element.
    Now Zhah being influenced by the Bane, rending Gargoyle society in twain in the aftermath would be dramatic.... "Oh by the way, you suddenly notice a traitor at the funeral. Yeah, that bloke you've never seen before. It's probably him" is absolutely not. Whither the sense of personal betrayal? Wither the application of animus and grudge? Not here; Dawn was hardly beloved by the player base, so Uskadesh is hardly going to be seen as an Iago even if he turns out to be the husband/brother of Queen Zahn. (Which would at least mirror the "Crook and Cane" gambit that took down Dawn).
    Still... it looks like we'll be spared people spamming for loot at her funeral, which this lore seems to indicate happens off stage. Thank Cantabridge for that!
     
  6. Ok one question? Where is Ors's body. I figured it had something to do with that evil Gargoyle Queen.
     
  7. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    If I were Queen Zhah, I would take advantage of the current crisis. I'd swoop (not ride) into Britannia, save its people from the Bane, and establish a new kingdom encompassing both Britannia and Ter Mur.
     
  8. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    That, or he has seen through and knows what some of us already suspect...

    Queen Dawn's about as dead as internet gaming itself.
     
  9. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    It's a very strange reaction, since a minster is a church attached to a monastery - maybe he's a minister, although even getting that right would not salvage the sentence from the punctuation trainwreck...
     
  10. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    A minister can also mean a government official, as it does in this case. :p
     
  11. Lord Chaos

    Lord Chaos Always Present
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    An Corp? Seriously?

    Why not.
     
  12. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    Minister, yes - MINSTER, as they have written, nope ...
     
  13. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    It was a *magical* dagger. It's effects must prohibit resurrection. :p
     
  14. Lord Chaos

    Lord Chaos Always Present
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    I think PKs would love getting one of those, heh.
     
  15. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    Ors ain't dead yet on all shards. On some shards (at least one anyway) he died at the Shrine, by his own hand. On GL, however, he ran off.

    I'm betting that he'll be dead sooner or later on all shards, but this could easily be a situation where the outcome will vary shard to shard.

    -Galen's player
     
  16. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    I noticed the Atlantic one was named something like 'Dagger of Corrupted Love', which had all sorts of implications for Virtuebane's progress corrupting virtues, but I didn't spot it being 'named' on Europa.
     
  17. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    On the GL shard the dagger was done with a specific, ancient poison. We've been tracking down and killing those who were involved in the manufacture and transport of the poison and the dagger. It's been kind of awesome actually. Their heads are on pikes outside the Counselor's Hall.

    -Galen's player
     
  18. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    I guess this might be true.

    But there's no actual reason to think it.

    See this.

    -Galen's player
     
  19. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    My guess, and hope, is that this is a red herring for us. And, in-character, the guy just has a weird reaction to tragedies. Something struck him as funny at that moment.

    If it's another traitor that'd be, I would argue, a tad much.

    -Galen's player
     
  20. Mapper

    Mapper Crazed Zealot
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    The EMs on Europa said the Shard Ems were able to decide on Ors future, So it will vary per shard.
     
  21. Tjalle

    Tjalle Grand Inquisitor
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    And on Siege nothing whatsoever happened.

    Other than the default placing of a sarcophagus in a castle where most people can´t go anyways...

    *sighs*
     
  22. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    It is good that there is fiction.

    -Galen's player
     
  23. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    Interesting; thank you.

    -Galen's player
     
  24. Taylor

    Taylor Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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    oic, ha. Good catch. :thumbup1:
     
  25. Bobar

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    When Queen Dawn was killed (which I must admit was a bit of a surprise to me) I re-read the last episode of this fiction again and it gave rise to several questions in my mind.

    Firstly it was a secret meeting the only persons present were Dawn and Zhah.
    So one question in my mind was was the visitor in fact Zhah?.

    Whether it was Zhah or an impersonator if Virtuebane was after an humble artifact blessed for Humility maybe this was a ruse to obtain one. Maybe someone was aware of the origin of Dawns sword?. Certainly the visitor was the one who raised the question of a humble artifact.

    The visitor was also the one who mentioned the Shrine of Humility and put this location in Dawns mind.

    So when Dawn visits the shrine Ors appears and instead of acting like a leader of her people she rushes to him and is slain. A Queen should at least question such an appearance so she was really the instigator of her own demise. Virtuebane also appears which suggest foreknowledge of Dawns visit.

    If the visitor was NOT Zhah this would explain all the above however if it WAS Zhah then it is possible Zhah has her own agenda.

    One unanswered question is, as far as I know Virtuebane was looking for but did not get the sword so who now has it?.

    I have seen suggestions that Zhah should become Queen. I would certainly need some explanations of the above before I could support anything like this,

    Who has most to gain from Dawns death?. If Zhah conspired with Virtuebane with the Queenship in mind she would be a prime contender. Virtuebane seeks to rule by conquest this much is clear from the past events maybe the Queenship would be her reward, Virtuebanes the sword.

    I have seen nothing previously to suggest Zhah would conspire with such as Virtuebane but who knows?. Zhahs War Minister seems to be a likelier suspect based on the last episode.
     
  26. Hunters' Moon

    Hunters' Moon Grand Inquisitor
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    How did Ors not get gutted like a pig for killing Dawn? He was allowed to run off or kill himself. Silly.
     
  27. RaDian FlGith

    RaDian FlGith Babbling Loonie
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    Actually, if anything, it makes me think it more.

    It's sort of that old (pardon the pun) addage about it being darkest before the dawn... I've got several reasons to think this. Some based on fiction, and some based on the manner in which Mythic handles fiction.

    Not saying from any aspect, of course, that she couldn't truly be dead. I definitely hold that out as a possibility too.

    But there's a huge part of me that's just not buying it.
     
  28. Yalp

    Yalp Guest

    I'm wondering where the Empress of Zento was in all this? All the heads of state which have diplomatic relations with Britannia should have been in attendance.. and written about in "official" UO ficition.
     
  29. Claire Repair

    Claire Repair Adventurer
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    Oh my, I wonder what would have happened, if the Internet and Forums had existed in the early days of Ultima? I guess RG would have quit the series due to frustration by player base.

    Every step in the plot is debated here like a wrong way to the Holy Grail.

    Its fiction.

    And btw: I agree with Bobar. It was Zhah, who convinced Dawn to follow Humility. Some hours later Dawn was dead. At the Humility gate.
    Who says that humans are superior over Gargs? Maybe Gargs take over?
    Majority didn´t like Dawn. Will they like a Gargoyle leader?

    /Claire
     
  30. RawHeadRex

    RawHeadRex Slightly Crazed
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    Sherry the Mouse rocks the hut !
     
  31. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    Recently, I've thought Mythic's grasp of fiction was just below that of pulp romance novels published by no-name printing houses, essentially less than internet slash.

    This story, while not perfect is FAR BETTER then the last several steaming piles we've received. "Minster" is a real word, thus a spellchecker could have blithely ignored it, my mind filled in the missing 'i' for me during the first read through. *shrugs* Yes, someone could have caught it during a proofread, but that’s just getting nitpicky.

    Overall, the story was cute, in a touching way, and managed to slightly further the plot without a lot of cliché. Yes, the foreshadowing of Zhah's future traitor was a bit trite, but forgivable in this case.

    Sadly, not many people seem to remember Zhah's Minister of War, Uskadesh. He's an NPC on all shards residing in a tiny building in the military compound just east of the Royal City. Anyone who did the gargoyle side of the Abyss housing quest would have had to talk to him several times - it was from him you acquired the ink and your prize.

    This story was a step in the right direction for the UO fiction.

    p.s. As for Dawn being dead… While yes, they could pull some soap opera-esque resurrection, or even say that the ‘Dawn’ that was killed was a copy created using the Crystal of Duplicity… Eh… I’m willing to wait and see. What I’m not willing to accept, however, is another Casca. Ugh. Musical dictators is a boring game and political intrigue doesn’t do it for most people. We need a decent external threat, ones from within tend to wear a tad thin when done repeatedly.
     
  32. Perhaps Zhar is up to no good and the War Minister couldn't contain his excitement concerning that?
     
  33. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    *nods in agreement*

    Nice use of the Minister of War; I hadn't recognized the character either! I, and others too I think, appreciate the re-use of NPCs; it helps UO to be a realistic (to the extent that the term realistic can be applied to this genre at all), living environment.

    -Galen's player

     
  34. Adol

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    The single player games, apart from Ultima IX outside of the fan-patch, were good fiction. And the reason we're debating the fiction now is that mostly this Arc has been carried on the back of it and very, very little is happening in game... and I say that as someone with a 10,000 Ophidan and Meer reputation character. If the fiction doesn't hold together, not just the narrative arc but the whole arc itself doesn't... and I'm sorry to say it's not, really.

    Well, outside of the EM fiction which Galen is relating. That sounds like it's being done very well. Every where else though, the Arc currently is nothing more than killing Blackrock Golems for weeks, to get the armor sets. Which has nothing to do with the plot at all. Where are the Sarcophagus for people to pay their private respects at least? Last night Dawn was still on her bed in Europa, at the whim of passing randy teenagers just home from school...

    It wasn't very regal.

    Edited to Add: No, I wasn't aware of the Gargoyle placement, as I only did the Human side, not having such a character at the time. That's interesting, and possibly connected to the wider arc (the Bane Dragon first appeared in the Abyss of course, as did the emerging threat Zhah was so worried about)... I just hope they have time to tie it all up satisfactorily if so, especially for those shards where the narrative thread has been left to get so threadbare...
     
  35. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    Wow, that's really disturbing...and disrespectful..


    Sadly, I fully expect this arc to end with more questions than answers, and just as many unfinished, dangling plot threads to gnaw at us for years as every other arc has had.

    However, I am willing to bet that GL will see many of them wrapped up after Mythic has already fumbled into Fellowship and Guardian territory. We know its coming, I just wonder how badly they will butcher it.
     
  36. NuSair

    NuSair Babbling Loonie
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    Given the fact that in the fiction that it is stated that he took his own life, doesn't really matter now does it?
     
  37. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    Ors was found dead on GL tonight, reportedly by his own hand.
     
  38. MalagAste

    MalagAste Belaern d'Zhaunil
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    Lies... The stranger in white lies.
     
  39. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    I haven't seen anything posted anywhere else yet. Quick rundown?
     
  40. puni666

    puni666 Slightly Crazed
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    Should have got him some meds.
     
  41. I wonder where that idea came from...
     
  42. Google... Enlil'Nishar.

    :popcorn:
     
  43. Trebr Drab

    Trebr Drab Guest

    Mmmmaybe not. :lol:
    (At least...yet. Watch, someone will add it now and make it look like I'm blind. Go figur!)
     
  44. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    I liked how they did it on Europa. Was very Valentine's Day.

    Hm ... a short lived romance, a queen that dies but doesn't really ... when do we get the Star Wars: The Old Republic patch?

    That's seriously the saddest bit of UO fiction--and by sad, I mean :sad2:--I've ever read.
     
  45. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    I posted something related on the GL board, http://vboards.stratics.com/uo-great-lakes/235802-traitors-beware.html. However, its looks far better looking here Ultima Online Roleplaying Community - Great Lakes Shard, being all properly formatted and such. :thumbup1:

    Honestly, there wasn't much in game to go on. After finding and killing a Bane Chosen named Vicfier, who used to be a member of the Brothers of Valor (prior EM fiction arc), we found a stranger in white plate standing over Ors' body.

    He said that he had been the last to see Ors alive, and that the man couldn't deal with the grief and dishonor that he felt. So he committed suicide. He decapitated Ors for no real reason as well...

    The white knight then dropped hints as to certain things he believed. To anyone who has played Ultima VII, his words were familiar...just free of certain muppetey rhetoric.

    So, HE and THEY are showing up waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay earlier than I expected. Fortunately, I trust EM Malachi to craft a story that will shame Mythic's attempts.

    Actually, this raises the question in my mind that Virtuebane may have been a set up from the start. HE
    (the Guardian)
    may have set the demon in motion so His toadies could swoop in like the good guys and the people of Britannia would be grateful... Kinda like on a certain other world...
    (Pagan)
    Which he then conquered.
     
  46. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    A spellchecker run through is pretty much all the attention paid to the writing in this one, but a spellchecker is no substitute for a reader checking the content - we're not talking about weeks spent proofreading a novel, for heaven's sakes it's a four paragraph piece with so many misuses of English it's embarassing (or should be, if they cared about it enough to BE embarassed).

    "Up upon" (Up onto, or upon, but not both), "Within the coffin held the body" (No, the coffin held the body, or within the coffin was the body...), "one of the flowers that adorned both sides" (pretty big for one flower!), "telling her of the plans of the sword and how hopefully it would work" (plans FOR the sword, and Dawn hopes the plan or the sword will work, whereas that gibberish suggests the sword is 'hopeful' about how it will perform), "She had spoke " (the word is 'spoken'), ""laid her her hand gently on top of the Marble coffin " (one 'her' too many and marble is not capitalised)... it's such poor quality English and sloppy work.

    Then there are sentences that are just poorly punctuated - " Your death will not be forgotten, Your enemies become my enemies,Your death shall be avenged by your countrymen and friends." (Replace every comma with a full stop, or stop capitalising when it's incorrect to do so), "Sherry watched as people from all lands, came to pay respect to Dawn" (drop the comma, it's not needed or useful).

    Then there's the downright hideous construction. "He who had been under Virtuebane’s spell, and he who had taken his own life after being released from his mind bond, after seeing his beloved wife lying at his feet, dead from his hand.". That clunker needs some of the spare punctuation scattered badly in other parts of the piece.

    UOHerald should matter, even the fiction they put there. This is the front page, world wide advert for the game. The message from this piece is "we have some nice enough ideas about the storyline, but we dash them out in two minutes, with minimal literacy, never put any effort into quality checking, and think that's good enough to dump on our customers".

    It may be a true reflection of EA's attitude to us and UO, since the amount of stuff that comes out badly tested or hopelessly bugged is far too high, but it seems that now they can't even bother to spin the product decently in it's main (and almost only) advertisment. As has become usual, not particularly bad ideas and probably good intentions but woeful implementation.
     
  47. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    I was trying to ignore most of those, honestly.

    The prose wasn't Shakespeare, or even high school quality... But it was better than most of the schlock they've published recently...perhaps more in intent then in literary form.

    None of the Devs are authors (or English majors, obviously), and we haven't had a properly tested publish in over a year now. Not excusing it, (believe me, I hate it) but it’s plain to me that holding them to a 8th grade creative writing standard is expecting too much.

    Could they do more to proofread the fiction? Yes. Should they? Yes.

    Will they? Apparently not. :(
     
  48. Ancient Sosarian

    Ancient Sosarian Journeyman
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    Hail Sosarians, and Dearest Sherry,

    Cling to Truth, Love, and Courage, and The Virtues that Flow from them. Cling also to our History. The Gem of Immortality is irrevocably melded to Sosaria and all of our inhabitants. Dawn the Valiant, Queen of Britannia, may indeed lie dead in yonder Sarcophagus. Whether Her, or another, Death remains but another Portal through which we Sosarians pass.

    Dark Times, to be sure. Yet Sosarians have faced even Darker Times and found their way through, always emerging again into The Light.

    Virtuebane, and any in league with or behind this vile abomination, underestimates Sosarians. Their Pride, their insane ego shall prove to be their undoing.

    Even now the People gather, they investigate, they research and plan their actions. They mourn and grieve but they do not despair. Their Spirits remain Strong and Resolute.

    Grieve and Mourn Sherry, then Rise, for the People need Thee Still, perhaps Now, More than Ever!!!

    An SoS
     
  49. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    It is, to my mind, enough to consider it an improvement. Which it undeniably is.

    Not only do Marty's player and I both agree, Aurelius, that the fiction on the UO Herald should be treated with more care, but we've both said so multiple times, to the point of being called too negative.

    And then, of course, there's those folks to deal with who criticize them for having fiction at all.

    *shrugs*

    -Galen's player