[ Retro Scan of the Week ] Ultima V

February 2nd, 2009 by Benj Edwards

Origin Ultima V Commodore 64 Ad - 1988(click to see full scan)

[ From Compute’s Gazette for Commodore Users, December 1988 ]

Discussion topic of the week: What’s your favorite entry in the Ultima computer game series?

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16 Responses to “[ Retro Scan of the Week ] Ultima V”

  1. XCALIBR8 Says:

    I was really into Ultima VII. I played that one quite a bit on my friends old computer. We would play it all the time over there as he didn’t have any consoles at the time.

  2. Craig Betts Says:

    I started the Ultima series at Ultima ][. It is a close call between IV and V for my favorite. Ultima IV got away from the traditional hack-and-slash, but it was Ultima V that had the best story line. It was nice have Lord British out of the picture for a while.

  3. JayP Says:

    Favorite Ultima game?

    Er, I know but it was the only one I played.

  4. JackSoar Says:

    Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar.

    I first played this via the NES port (which made it “Ultima II” on that platform, whereas Ultima III: Exodus became “Ultima I” and Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny became “Ultima III” – reminds me of the Final Fantasy numbering issues). I like the graphics on the NES version best, but it did not have near the level of interaction and depth as the computer version (although the VGA graphics/sound enhancement patch available online does improve the experience in the aesthetics department). I loved the virtue system and character creation sequence as a kid, although I never progressed that far into the game back then.

  5. Dave Ross Says:

    I waited a long time for Ultima V to come out for the C64, and I spent a lot of time trying to beat it, so that one will always be my favorite. Ultima VII was pretty awesome, too, as it helped usher in a new era of computer gaming.

  6. SirPaul Says:

    My favorite has to be the first one I played: Ultima 3: Exodus on the NES. I also enjoyed the first one, IV, V, VI, and VII. I quite liked Ultima Online, but it seemed like.. something was missing.

  7. arlandi Says:

    look at that dude’s hair!!!
    somewhere in his inventory is a comb and a good hair spray!!!

    my favorite Ultima is the Ultima 7 – Black Gate. i always like to cast that Armageddon spell in LB’s castle!! or striking Lord British with the Black Rock Sword.

    there isn’t much game with such huge and complex world like Ultima 7. Even Elder Scrolls doesnt have that many items you can interact with.

  8. Dementropy Says:

    This has been a long time coming. Ultima V had an open world (I used to play this on my old Samsung with a whopping 1MB hard drive, off of 5.25″ floppies), an underworld, and (I cannot stress this enough) OPEN DIALOGUE!

    There was none of this point-and-click conversation that took over in the mid-90’s. You had virtues to follow (or not), and that guided your character’s…character (for lack of a better word). You had to pay attention to the people you met and what they said. You had to type in actual words in hopes of eliciting a response. You want to become a member of the resistance movement? Talk to people. You want to find directions to a secret place? Talk to people. No “guided responses.” No choice 1-5 to click on ranging from the most flattering to the most dastardly. You had to use words.

    One of the things I also miss about this game were the pack-in extras. One did not need to get a “special edition” to get a cloth map, a travel journal, a coin, et al. It was all there!

    I graduated from Rogue to Ultima V. It was the first game closest to role-playing that I’d only previously experienced with mounds of paper, heavy tomes, and dice. It will forever remain one of my all-time favorites, as well as a great example of what modern games seem to have lost in the way of conversational exploration (it’s not just for dungeon crawls).

    Seeing as how I jumped in at number five in the series, the intro was a bit of a shock, as well as being immersed in a world with which avid fans were already familiar. I adjusted quickly, filled notepads with translated runes, spell reagents, and coordinates. I was obsessed. At the age of 13, I was truly captivated by this game, and still go back to it after all these years.

  9. ED Says:

    I loved the one were Lord British goes to outerspace in a russian rocket!


    Quest of the Avatar Hands down

    VIII is the worst!

  10. Dementropy Says:

    I’m guessing that means you haven’t played IX.

  11. Very Evolved Says:

    I entered the series at Ultima VII – totally hooked. But in 2007 I found the Lazarus remake of Ultima V. It’s built on the first Dungeon Siege Engine and it’s absolutely hands down the best Ultima entry in the series.
    And it’s not because of the better graphics, it’s because it’s an astoundingly good and faithful re-creation with a lot of new music and characters that feel like they really belong in Britannia.

  12. kyle Says:

    just wanted to share this with anybody who hasnt played it
    just found this a while back you can just play it in your browser and quite a few other apple][ games

  13. Twoflower Says:

    I got in the series with Ultima 6, so that’s the one I remember the most. The graphics were just STUNNING, full VGA and with a bright and colorful palette. Ultima 7 was more impressive, of course, but it was also a multi-megabyte monster which I had to dedicate an entire box of floppy disks to. Six was compact and got the job done without extra memory or massive disk space needs.

  14. Cody Says:

    I somehow managed to miss all the Ultima games despite being involved in playing video games since the very beginning! I guess I was more into Sierra adventure / point and click games, more than RPG stuff.

  15. Francois424 Says:

    I remember that publicity shot… Boy did I get ultima5 when it got out. I am still playing it (thru STeeM atari emulator, as I own the original AtariST U5) every now and then. Lazarus as well obviously; too bad they coudn’t fix the blink bug, it keeps krashing my games, and I get tired of starting over. I especially loved the Day/Night cycles and NPC schedules, that truely impressed me back then, I was like WOW !!!!

    Now if Anyone could remake U4 with lazarus’ Quality standards (minus blink bug), My 2 favorite of the series would be there 🙂

  16. Doctor Meanberger Says:

    Ultima VII! First one I got into, and I still have yet to see a game match its brilliant combination of a very detailed, open world and such involved story and characters. The whole series was a lot of fun (although, like any Ultima fan, I was very disappointed with IX), but VII still remains perhaps my favorite game of all time.

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