As I continue to regain consciousness from driving for 20 hours within 2 days, things come back to me from the Austin player’s lunch. Note that due to those “experiments” back in college, at any moment factual recollections may change into stuff I just made up without warning.
Lord British, Murm and I had a pretty interesting discussion about the Ultima Collection, prompted by Murm’s being unable to actually run most of it. Basically LB plans to, once Ultima: Ascencion is released, redo the older Ultimas using the Ascencion engine. He’d also like to take the opportunity, a la George Lucas, to rework much of the earlier ones since it was pretty hard to cram actual plot and characterization into an Atari 400. I asked why OSI didn’t just port the tile-based Ultimas (1 through 5) to a more Windows 95-friendly engine, since that would seem to be the quickest way to preserve the older titles. LB agreed that it would be easy, but the problem was no one save us terminal Ultima geeks would actually pay money for them (after all, OSI gives Ultima 4 out for free). This does go against Origin’s announced intentions to only do online games (which was reinforced in his talk), so unless they’re planning on releasing a massively multiplayer Ultima: Pagan, we’re probably out of luck for the foreseeable future.
Lord British said that Wing Commander Online (or Privateer Online, which I’m sure is what it will turn into anyway) was an on again off again project that was currently off again, but is their number 2 priority (number 1 presumably being that last single player game they’re shoving out the door currently).
Every attendee got an Official UO knicknack (a UO zipper thingy that hangs onto your zipper or something). I’m sure it will appear on eBay shortly if you want your own.
Oh, and speaking of official UO knicknacks, after much discussion, our group has decided that LadyMOI is in fact a babe. We have a sexist and demeaning nickname for her now, as befitting her new objectified status, but it would really only make sense if you came of age in the early 80’s.