3 posts in a day! This is the last of the Ultima parodies at least that I know about. It was written in 1995 after the announcement of Ultima 9 Ascension but long before the game ever came out.
The games intro shows you as a student making your way to the lands of Sodom to once again team up with Lord Finnish. There is no sound in the game but this is clearly going to be a step up graphically from Ultimuh.
I get to assign some stats before I begin. Brawn clearly affects my fighting ability. I’m unclear as to what effect if any the other two stats have even after playing the game.
As soon as it starts, I can see that this is going to be an Ultima 2 parody. The graphics and indeed near enough everything else in the game are just like Ultima 2 complete with the simple conversation system, purple tiles, etc…
Just like in Ultima 2 there are loads of real world characters to talk to like Roger Waters. The strange thing about playing this game is that it is clearly a parody yet it’s not always that obvious as this is exactly the sort of thing that happened in U2.
LB has a lot to say and gives me the details of the quest. His favourite children’s book has been stolen by a creature known as Bunnicula. I’ll need a fancy weapon to defeat him/it and gain his book back. He also offers to increase my hitpoints for gold in true U2 fashion.
While I’m in the castle I take the chance to explore. There is an armour shop where I buy myself a Gorilla suit which appears to be what passes for the games best armour.
I notice a figure lurking around the back of the castle so I figure I must need to talk to them. Having walked all the way around they are less than helpful.
The world map (and the dungeon when I get that far) has a load of pre-placed monsters which just have to be killed once to remove them from the game. They don’t reappear when you reload either (Titan Quest should have taken a note from this).
The world map is about U2 sized and I head East through the mountains to find the Lamer Lycaeum.
I’m told to go and meditate at the center of the Circles of Mania.
I saw these earlier and head straight back to learn my spellcasting.
When I get back to the Lycaeum, Ale is dead and I have to help inter him (with the aid of David Bowie).
I carry out this job. The other graves are for things like the Apple 2, COBOL, etc….
I then get the opportunity to buy two spells when I want them. I never actually use either of these spells in the game though. The games other two spells require me to aid two of Sodom’s residents (Trent and Pink).
I’ve not met Trent yet, but Pink is here in the Lycaeum muttering something about marbles. I’ll figure that out later.
I go back to the world map looking for locations and find a dungeon in the Northwest called Mustard.
In here Skot, the Skottster offers to teach me scat for 1000 gp. I’m sure I’ll need this so I grab the gold and learn my new skill.
Mustard is a very large and mazelike 2D dungeon. In the middle is Bunnicula itself. I can’t harm it for now and have to run away Monty Python style. I do gather a lot of goodies from exploring the rest of the dungeon before I head back out to buy food and hp in LB’s castle.
In the SW corner of the map is a helicopter but I can’t get the thing to take off so I leave this for now and head further east to find the town of Sodom.
I learn that Pink stayed in the hotel here.
And searching the drawers in one of the rooms nets me the bag of marbles.
I also find Trent and he takes the peanut butter I didn’t know I had off me completing one of my quests.
A demon in the SW of Sodom gives me a useful tip about the drinks in the bar. Sure enough buying different drinks raises different stats and I use this to increase my brawn. For the rest of the game I can kill all the monsters with one hit.
I take Pink’s marbles back to complete that quest.
And I can now buy both the Armageddon (useless) & Flight spells. The flight spell allows me to use the helicopter. I have to be careful not to get stuck here as I need to use a spell every time I fly.
The copter gets me to a previously inaccessible island with a tower.
In the middle of here is a character out of the Young Ones who tells me he has the sword I need but his key was stolen by the hillbillies.
The tower is another dungeon with loads of treasure so I keep exploring. I always need money in this game to increase my hitpoints.
I now fly round the map looking for another location where these hillbillies could be. I do find this tree which gets me some ultimately useless talking fruit.
Since I’m getting nowhere I head back to Mustard dungeon. There were some energy fields in here which do me 1000 damage when I walk through them. I have enough hp to survive this time. Sure enough a sign on the other side makes me think I’m heading the right way.
I scat the king of the hillbillies into submission and take his key.
This unlocks the door in the tower and I get the sword of slack I’ve been looking for.
Two hits with this and Bunnicula is down.
I have enough hp left to make it through the fields to the chest with LF’s book.
I head back to his castle and hand this over. He then sends me to his rocket to fly me back to Earth.
I hop in the rocket and the end cutscene starts.
This was a very faithful take on Ultima 2. I didn’t get a lot of the humour and it’s nowhere near as amusing as U4P2 but it’s still an enjoyable enough game and it does raise a few smiles. In copying Ultima 2 it hasn’t exactly picked the height of the series although this was arguably more fun than U2 itself was (if a lot smaller). I like the fact that this was the work of one guy just like the original game and it shows in the bizarre nature of the world. It’s worth a look for Ultima fans but this is a seriously oldskool game by any standards and plays just like it’s out of the mid 80’s apart from a few VGA stills.