The Ultima series would not have reached its ninth instalment if the franchise hadn’t been so popular. It’s been twenty years since Richard Garrot’s creation of the original Ultima hit the shelves, and finally, fresh for 2000, the ultimate Ultima is ready. This is, Ultima 9: Ascension.
Now in full 3D, Ultima 9 promises some of the largest, most realistic environments created to date. They are beautiful, but as a consequence require a lot of memory if you want to get the best out of them. Real-time effects are amazing. There is an in-game clock that is used to set full day and night cycles, again adding to the realism. You can fully interact with many of U9A’s 200-strong cast. Of course, some of them are only there to be slain by your sword. Offensive weapons aside, no role-playing game would be complete without the addition of magic. U9A has in excess of 40 unique magic spells, some of which are offensive, other are defensive.
All the aforementioned features combined with on-line capabilities make for one hell of an RPG. If you’re familiar with any of the Ultima series, then you should know what to expect. This is, after all, Ultima.