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Review Forgotten Gems: A look back at Ultima V

Metro

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Konjad said:
The review is not written with caps lock therefore it cannot be blobert's review!

This -- I was robbed.
 

Silellak

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The primary advantage Lazarus offers over U5 is for Storyfags (like me) who enjoy the greatly-enhanced dialog and characters. Ultima 5's story - while fantastic - was still held back by the limitations of the technology at the time, and Lazarus helps bring the story and world even more to life. Companions can actually comment on what's going on, for instance - like in Ultima 7. Oh, and the music fucking rocks.

That said, I'm not sure I'd recommend Lazarus over Ultima 5 - I'd just tell people to play both. Ultima 5 still easily stands up as a classic, and if you can't look past the graphics, fuck you. But Lazarus is like Ultima 5 and 7 had a beautiful, beautiful baby - minus some of 7's awesome world-interactivity, and is easily better than most (if not all) RPGs released in the last 5 years.
 

made

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Yea, what guy with Ultima7 avatar said.

Ideally, play the original first (on winuae for best experience), then Lazarus so you can appreciate the changes they made. Sure, the engine sucks but was apparently the only viable choice at that time. Now Lazarus under exult would be pure awesome - perhaps one day...
 

Zeus

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commie

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zeitgeist said:
POOPOO MCBUMFACE said:
I've been pondering this for a while, and this pretty cool retrospective gives me an opportunity to ask; this game looks brilliant, and I'm wondering, why do people recommend Lazarus over it? I'm sure it's a great mod, but UV seems perfectly playable, and more importantly... isn't on the fucking Dungeon Siege engine. What's the advantage?
Good question, would love to hear what someone who played both extensively has to say about the differences, since I only briefly tried Lazarus a long time ago when it wasn't fully finished yet.

wikipedia said:
The original game featured a tile-based 2D world to explore, whereas the world of Britannia in Lazarus was entirely re-constructed in 3D. Several spells from the original could not be supported by the new game engine; Among them were "Des Por", which caused the party to move to the next lower level of a dungeon, and "Uus Por", which caused movement to the next higher level. The "In Por" (Blink) spell was removed from the final patch due to a bug referred to as "Blink Blindness", although a patch to reactivate the spell is featured on the website as an unsupported download. Many objects from the original Ultima V which could be moved, such as chests, barrels, and mirrors, are immovable in Lazarus. Naval combat is also different, as the few NPC ships are immobile, and cannons are absent. Other features from the original game that had to be removed because of engine limitations include whirpools, the magic carpet, digging up moonstones and usable skiffs.[citation needed]

The developers re-wrote much of the dialog in the game, adding many more quests and choices than were available in the original game. Much of the dialog was enhanced to discuss the philosophy of the virtues system in more detail and giving greater depth to the personalities encountered.
All in all, the list of features they removed seems to heavily outweigh the list of things they added.

I think making the story dialogues more detailed is a better added feature than not being able to move a barrel. Getting rid of popamole 'insta-travel' spells is also a plus.;)
 

Sceptic

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POOPOO MCBUMFACE said:
I've been pondering this for a while, and this pretty cool retrospective gives me an opportunity to ask; this game looks brilliant, and I'm wondering, why do people recommend Lazarus over it? I'm sure it's a great mod, but UV seems perfectly playable, and more importantly... isn't on the fucking Dungeon Siege engine. What's the advantage?
I'm an explorationfag, and this is the one point where Lazarus shines so brightly it's almost blinding. There are TONS of things to find on the overworld map by just exploring. The vast majority were already there in U5, but there's just a completely different feel between stumbling into a square with something of interest on the top-down map and walking across this beautiful beach on the bottom of a cliff face then noticing a cave you can go in. And as Silellak said, it's not one recommended over the other - it's both being highly recommended. Play U5 as part of the Ultima series, in-between 4 and 6, importing your Avatar across of course, but also play Lazarus on some boring winter weekend when you want to experience a new-ish game with an awesome old-school vibe and almost every element done right.

As for the Lazarus Runtime Environment, there's absolutely nothing wrong with the engine, in fact Lazarus is proof that it is insanely moddable. It just happened that its flagship title was an abomination. Don't judge the engine by the poor product used to make it!
 

Silellak

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Sceptic said:
I'm an explorationfag, and this is the one point where Lazarus shines so brightly it's almost blinding. There are TONS of things to find on the overworld map by just exploring. The vast majority were already there in U5, but there's just a completely different feel between stumbling into a square with something of interest on the top-down map and walking across this beautiful beach on the bottom of a cliff face then noticing a cave you can go in.
Oh yeah. This. So much this. :love:
 
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POOPOO MCBUMFACE said:
I've been pondering this for a while, and this pretty cool retrospective gives me an opportunity to ask; this game looks brilliant, and I'm wondering, why do people recommend Lazarus over it? I'm sure it's a great mod, but UV seems perfectly playable, and more importantly... isn't on the fucking Dungeon Siege engine. What's the advantage?

Storyfags get a few more words, graphic whores get 3D graphics and some nice music.

Unless you hate turn based combat, the top down graphics, etc, stick with the original. There are even nice patches that add the music to the original PC version (I played the C64 version).


Blobert....excellent work. Excellent. A very enjoyable read.

The interface is much more difficult to learn, and the lack of auto-map and quest journal is hard to get used to again. I know the audience here are superior human beings who are taking precious time away from improving the Theory of Relativity, but yes the game seems archaic.

Bah. Perfect, right up until the last few words...

For me the game represents a future that was largely unrealized, and most sadly abandoned by even the creators of Ultima themselves. Ultima 5 holds up well today, and in many ways is rarely matched even today.

Yes, this is something I have felt for a long time myself. :salute:
 

Silellak

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Blackadder said:
For me the game represents a future that was largely unrealized, and most sadly abandoned by even the creators of Ultima themselves. Ultima 5 holds up well today, and in many ways is rarely matched even today.

Yes, this is something I have felt for a long time myself. :salute:
Indeed :salute:
 

SharkClub

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Strap Yourselves In
I REFUSE TO BELEIF THIS WAS WRITEN BY BLOBERT WHER ARE MY ALL CAPS AND DRUNKEN HILARIOS SHIT BROS















Nice review, BLOBERT. :thumbsup:
 

Sceptic

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There is always time for more than one play. If not, make time. Stop playing shitty new games and play both the Second Trilogy and Lazarus in their awesome glory.
 

Jaesun

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Sceptic said:
There is always time for more than one play. If not, make time. Stop playing shitty new games and play both the Second Trilogy and Lazarus in their awesome glory.

This. And if you are playing the Original, DO NOT be a gigantic faggot and read a walk-through. Grab a fucking piece of paper and get busy writing and use your fucking brain. For once.
 

MisterStone

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You should read the box materials that came w/the game though, there are clues in there.
 
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MisterStone said:
You should read the box materials that came w/the game though, there are clues in there.

Exactly. And it is all you will need.

Ruprekt, the combat isn't bad at all and is quite challenging, even right up until the end (unless you DO read walkthroughs and spoilers). And the Dungeons can be great fun, and require thought as well (unless you use spoilers...).
 

Sceptic

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Jaesun said:
And if you are playing the Original, DO NOT be a gigantic faggot and read a walk-through. Grab a fucking piece of paper and get busy writing and use your fucking brain. For once.
Or just dig out your Ultima 4 notes :smug:

@Blobert: Brotastic review bro.
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Silellak

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That's another thing Lazarus definitely got right - no quest journal and no quest compass, despite people on their forums bitching as loudly as possible for those "features". It was a real treat playing Lazarus shortly after playing Oblivion; at that time it'd been so long since I played a proper RPG, I actually thought Oblivion was a good game...until I played Lazarus.

Lazarus: Saving gamers' souls since 2006.
 

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