I am the Lord of Ultima (well, not yet) Part 14

I am the Lord of Ultima (well, not yet)
– by Goemon

I’m sure I’m not your only link to the official Lord of Ultima Forums, but if you don’t frequent them often, it’s easy to miss a lot of the goings-on in the game. Plus, it takes a special type of person to delve into the cavernous depths of that hardcore community. I consider myself to be somewhere in between the casuals and the diehard Lord of Ultima fans; I understand the majority of the game mechanics, and in fact know them well, but at the same time I can still learn quite a bit from reading threads and posts from more experienced players.

So hopefully some of the things I relate to you are interesting or even helpful.

Right now the forums are in the middle of a contest of their own; this one starring everyone’s favorite feudal lord, the Baron. Although you can’t really tell by his tiny display icon, apparently the LoU designers decided the Baron is a huge (read: fat) glutton. This could also be due to his exorbitant cost of 50,000 gold, or the fact that he consumes 100 units of food a day. By comparison, both a Knight and THE HORSE HE RIDES ON only eat 25. No wonder he gets his own contest.

In case you’re not a math wiz, that means the Baron eats four times as much in one day as a one-thousand pound animal (horses average at 1000 pounds- don’t worry I googled it). What, is this guy from Texas or something? Zing!

Anyways, the contest is to “create an image” of the baron, using “any artistic discipline.” Interpretive dance or performance art anyone? Perhaps some abstract expressionism (if you don’t know, that’s when people splatter paint all over a canvas)? I almost feel like I should submit something like that to EA, just in an attempt to elicit a response. But alas, I probably won’t, due to my lack of inspiration. YOU should enter the contest though, because you get free diamonds, and there will be up to three winners. Plus there’s only a handful of entries so far, so even if your artistic skills aren’t the greatest you still have a shot! Let me know how it goes.

http://www.lordofultima.com/en/forum/showthread.php?tid=47349

As for me, I decided to branch out of my little territory in search of adventure. I’m talking about investing in some beachfront property.

This is one of the only spots by the coast left on the continent by my quick scan, so I’m jumping on it. Hopefully being in a new area will stir up a little more excitement. I’m sending an escort of thousands of Guardians with my Baron, and hopefully that will be enough to protect the new town while I get it set up.

Battle Narrative Entry: James Pryor

The small city of Jamestown rested in the crooked elbow of a mighty river. The power of the river was harnessed by the city. It allowed the mills to grind wheat into flower. The stonemasons used it’s flow to turn huge polishing wheels and create wondrous works. Their most recent was the Monument to the fallen Berserker built in front of the town hall for all to see. It honored the one man crazy enough to venture out into the forest who was killed by a giant spider. Incidentally, it was this same action that earned him the nickname of berserker.

Jamestown was a peaceful town, surrounded by other peaceful towns. Citizens worked by day and celebrated by night. They were happy folks with few worries. In fact, the only worry to be had belonged to the city council. A group of officials put in place by James himself to see to the order of the city. They were very successful with the exception of revenue generation. There were so many plans to make Jamestown better, but no money to do it with.

One of the younger members of the council convinced the others that tourism could generate a great deal of revenue. The catch was they needed something that would make Jamestown stand apart from other cities. What was it that could compel others from miles around to make the journey?

After some deliberation, a conclusion was reached. Jamestown needed a majestic symbol of power, a building that was unique to the area, something that could contain its culture; Jamestown needed a castle!

It was perfect. There wasn’t one for miles. Many had never even seen one in person. Work began right away. A few years later Jamestown had a castle that overlooked the same river that supplied the people water and machinery. It was a beautiful and wondrous sight.

It worked too! The day after its completion some people from far away rode into town on horseback. They hailed from a place no one had ever even heard of. They were armed men, but nice enough. They stayed in the inn. Ate in the Tavern. Of course they visited the castle. They even took time to admire the Monument to the fallen Berserker.

Everyone was excited. Jamestown was flourishing.

Then one day, a man came to town. He was elaborately dressed and clearly very wealthy. He spoke to the people as if he could have lead an army, but he came alone. He spoke with conviction and passion about the country he hailed from. A place just over the mountains from beyond where the mighty river starts.

The councilmen couldn’t believe what happened the next morning. After listening to this man all night, the citizens in the peaceful town of Jamestown revolted. They decided they could no longer stand under the rule of a man who knew nothing of defending a city; even if it was just a small peaceful city. The councilmen, at their roots, were cowards. When they heard the citizens wanted to revolt and take protection from a ruler they had never even heard of twelve hours before, they agreed in hopes they could keep their jobs after the change in leadership.

The change was peaceful, no blood was spilled in combat. Not even the messenger who carried the news to James was harmed. Thankfully James believed in a philosophy that doesn’t require one to kill the messenger of bad news.

However the ordeal did cause one death. The wife of the fallen berserker was visiting her husbands monument at the town hall when the mob came to tell the council they would no longer stand James’ ignorant ways. In those few minutes before the council caved, no one knew for sure what would happen. Many expected the council to denounce this treasonous idea. In a display of seriousness the mob of town folks pushed over the monument. It fell right on top of the berserkers wife.

In the end, the well dressed man stayed to look over the council. He allowed the council to stay intact, but he was essentially the power behind the decision makers. One of the first decision’s he allowed them to make was a new monument in place of the fallen berserker. It was called The Berserker and his Wife.

Image 1

I Am the Lord of Ultima (well, not yet) Part 3

I Am the Lord of Ultima (well, not yet)
– by Goemon

It’s been a bit of a slow week. I planned on expanding out of my city and founding some new towns. I thought everything had fallen into place, and I was ready to recruit myself a baron (for those who don’t know, a baron and an open plot of land on the world map are all it takes to found a new city). So I got my level 10 town hall, plenty of gold and resources, and moonstones to boot. That is the recipe for a baron. PLUS a level 10 Trinsic Temple…which I just so happened to overlook. Now I’ve got to wait another 30 hours or so for mine to fully upgrade.

Also, the baron is totally just Sean Connery.

Since I don’t have much else to say about my progress, besides the fact that I’m rolling in resources but can’t do anything with them until I found a new city, I figured I’d take the time to talk about a couple cool things I found on the Lord of Ultima official forums.

Last time I wrote about Lord of Ultima I complained about the lack of a zoom function. According to the official forums, I was wrong! It’s built right in, there’s just no on-screen button. It never occurred to me to press the standard combination of CTRL and -. Go ahead, try it. It works. Although it’s nice that I can now see my city in its entirety on my glorious 28 inch monitor (I call her Jezebel), the function is definitely not perfect. Zooming out also makes all of the text both smaller and, for some reason, cut off. For example, for the button that normally says ‘City,’ it now reads ‘C…’ The ‘Mail’ button simply says ‘…’ I’ll just show you a picture, it’ll be easier.

It also got super laggy. And I don’t think it has to do with my computer- I’ve got a 4850 for a graphics card and a 25 mbps internet connection. Should be more than enough to handle some 2d Isometric Action. Oddly enough, it also made my ponds shake back and forth. Literally, like they’re dancing. But hey, I guess beggars can’t be choosers right?

I also found a neat little program in a thread there called the City Planner. Basically, it gives you a blank slate of a city and lets you place resources and buildings anywhere on it immediately. This is so you can figure out optimal placement strategies for your newly founded cities. And building placement does matter in this game, as certain buildings get boosts for being either next to each other or next to certain natural resources. You don’t have to install anything, but you do have to download and run it on your computer.

Finally, the combat system has always been a bit confusing to me. The only strategy I have employed when raiding dungeons is sending as many units from as many types as possible, and sometimes I win, sometimes I lose. If you’re like me, just know you’re not alone. There’s an entire thread devoted to wanting to know exactly what the hell that system is all about- 18 pages worth of petition signatures, to be exact. Check it out if you want.

Alright guys, hopefully I can get my in-game act together in the next few days, recruit a baron, and lay waste to some poor sap’s small town. I’ll be back to let you know how it goes.