I’ve decided to just come clean…I had been wondering how to begin this Dev Diary and it occurred to me that it would probably be easiest if I just threw caution to the wind, rolled the dice and let the chips fall where they may (I just love cliches, don't you? That was the most I could fit in one sentence on my first try.)
I am an Ultima Addict.
I've been suffering from Ultimaholism for a few years now and it feels good to just type those words out....it really is refreshing and I must say I feel better already. I'm more relaxed, like a great lumbering beast with huge dripping venomous fangs has been physically lifted from my shoulders and all the cares and concerns of this earth have just floated away on the backs of tiny angels. Smiling cheribically as they wave fondly at me and head ever onward to the blissful transulent safety of their majestic havens. Far away and out of view.
Well maybe not quite like that, but perhaps close…perhaps very close.
Anyhow, I’m glad we’ve gotten that out of the way. Introductions are probably in order so let me begin with this...My handle is Nicodemus and I am a Worldbuilder for the U6P Archon team. My UDIC name is Randy Dragon I’ve been with the team a good while now. I began my modding career by doing some Quality Assurance for the team…I believe the team was releasing their second Milestone at the time and I had written Zephyr(the then and now Co-Producer of the team) an email offering my services as a play-tester…he may have mentioned in a post that they were interested in a few people doing that for them. I had just completed Ultima 5 Remake Lazarus and I wanted to see more…so when he replied back that he would offer me a spot as a play-tester, I quickly fell right into it.
I QA’d for a while and slowly began to take on other projects…a little at a time…most of them in the Worldbuilding function, but I dabbled in Content as well. AS WyrdWeb says in her u6project.com profile...I was donning different "hats". My first big worldbuilding assignment was Paws…Frilly Wumpus gave me a worldbuilding tutorial off of the old Siege Network. After I read that I checked out some concept art that Zephyr had and I also looked into some resources on the internet for the original Ultima 6 game. I also went bumping around in Lazarus a bit as well just to see how they had pieced things together. After I did this research I then got a scratch sheet of paper and drew an outline of the region I was working in and then placed the buildings as best I could taking into consideration the original game and our new concept of the town.
Now I’m sure most of you know that Lazarus and the U6P project work off of the same map…. utilizing the Project Britannia map. Most cases, we are working off of just an empty landscaped area with only trees, hills, rivers and the like to start off with…in order to fit all of our buildings and whatnot in, typically quite a bit of terraforming is in order. Some examples of this is if you look closely and compare Project Britannia, or even Lazarus’ version of Paws area you will see in our game the Sea is pushed back a little bit and some hills had to be what I have just taken to calling “Terra-formed”. I’ve had to use this process quite a bit….Buc’s Den had to be slightly terraformed, the Skara Brae islands actually had to be merged together in one case…Project Britannia’s Skara Brae has 3 islands…I condensed it down to 2 and removed the river that ran through the bigger island…(this made our version more in line with how the original game layout looked.) Whenever feasible I like to keep with the original game layout as much as possible…this also comes into play with some of the décor which I am sure I will cover with my subsequent Dev Diaries….
My intention with these posts are to keep you all in the community up to speed with what’s going on in the mod-making process with our little game…my hope is that I can give you all a pretty good idea of where we have been and where we are aiming to go with our version of Ultima 6 The False Prophet. That’s all for now folks…I’ll continue at a later time when I can come up for air…