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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

Ultima Forever Returns to the Paragon Path

by Ken Newquist / September 6, 2012

Ultima IV is one of my favorite computer games. Released in 1985, it was the first computer RPG that I truly lost myself in, spending hour upon hour chronicling its expansive world. The setup of the game -- that you're an every day person drawn into the world of Britannia, and set on series of virtuous quests -- remains unique to this day, but what really got me was the multi-character parties. At a time when I was in love with Dungeons & Dragons, Ultima IV let me assemble a party of warriors, wizards, rogues, and tinkers and then use them to explore dungeons, towns, and ultimately the Abyss.

And now it's returning. Not the Ultima I knew -- I doubt many would want to play a game with its cutting edge 1985 graphics -- but a new game inspired Ultima IV's DNA called Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar. CNN has an article explaining the new game, which is based on a free-to-play model for PCs and iPad.

Based on the article, it looks like they're returning to Ultima's virtuous roots and the game sounds cool, but it's really hard to judge it without seeing screen shots or examples of game play. I doubt you'll be able to control a party like you did in Ultima IV, but just getting to navigate the game's signature ethical choices would be fun.

You can sign up for the beta at ultimaforever.com.