image I was really excited to listen to this Dev Hangout since Lord British was going to talk more about the Virtues and how they related to the new game and the new world. Unfortunately, it was nowhere near long enough for my liking, but there were some interesting tidbits related to Virtues.

First off, most of the virtues we know from Ultima IV such as Love and Compassion are back. It sounds like there might be some new one since it’s been 400 years since New Britannia has come into being. And from the little bits and pieces I’ve been able to put together, it has been all roses and rainbows for those original citizens. It sounds like they’ve gone through some dark patches and not everyone is on board with the idea of virtues.

Lord British did make a couple of interesting comments about how virtues play into the game. They are a major factor but not necessary to complete Episode 1. Many NPCs will be concerned and will know about your virtuous path while others won’t care at all. As a player you won’t know how you’re doing as virtuous Avatar and unlike the previous games where the questions were pretty direct and obvious, you will be tested in much more subtle ways. If they do things right you won’t even notice.

Some NPCs will have you do certain tasks or quests or give you information if you walk a virtuous path, while others will give you different tasks if you don’t walk the true path. As Richard put it, nefarious characters may ask you to do nefarious deeds.

Will some acts cannot be redeemed, such as murder, other less than “karmic” acts can be undone. It will take time, but it might be possible to redeem yourself. This sounds very, very interesting. You won’t know which are the tests and if you fail, you’ll have a chance to make amends. But the way Richard said, “you can finish the episode” leads me to believe there are a few things going on here. It sounds like the story will in fact change and quests won’t be available depending on certain actions. Second, the ending can and quite possibly will be different depending on how you’ve played the game. Now whether that’s simply a different set of cut scenes or perhaps the difference between getting a weapon or item and not getting it remains to be seen. But the way he answered the question and tone makes me thing the game and the ending will be different if you go around causing trouble and beating people up. It sounds like the game will quite dynamic, which in my mind means you can actually play it “the right way” the first time through and then go back and play as a more sinister character and get a different experience. Is anyone else getting that feeling?

Unfortunately, there wasn’t any talk about what exactly you do with the virtues and if there will be shrines like in the old series. There was mention of The Oracle, which was brought up before. This will be your moral compass so to speak. This is how you can learn how you’re doing with the virtues. Sounds interesting.

There was also talk of how virtues can affect a guild, but since we don’t quite know the role of virtues or even how guilds are going to work, we didn’t get too deep into that.

But, it was pretty fascinating. I’d really like to come back to this topic and more of the pieces of the story. Sure, the combat is neat, the crafting is interesting, the houses will be fun, but the play’s the thing! I want to know more about the story and the history of this land. That to me is the fun part.

Any other thoughts on what Richard laid out for the virtues?

Hangout of the Avatar ~ 9.27.13 ~ Virtues

image comes from Lycaeum.Ultimacodex

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

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