Tabula Rasa Developer Crafting Brand New "Ultimate" RPG

Tabula Rasa Developer Crafting Brand New "Ultimate" RPG

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Richard Garriott's wants to get some things off his chest, including that he's got a new RPG in the works that will be "smaller, thinner and lighter" than his past projects.

Now that Richard Garriott is $32 million richer, selling his house, and working at a new social game company, a lot of folks have been wondering just what his next game is. The answer, it turns out, is that the man is working on a brand new RPG that sounds like he's hoping will start small but eventually grow to become the Next Big Thing.

Taking to Facebook, Lord British wrote a lengthy post that reflected on a number of topics, including how he got started in the videogame industry, that Ultima Online wound up deviating away from his vision once he left the helm (it turns out that he wanted neither ninjas nor elves in the game), and that he's got a new project in development that sounds like an incredibly ambitious RPG:

Here is what I feel is safe to say: Lord British's Ultimate Role Playing Game, which may be called "Akalabeth" or may be called "New Britannia" or may be called "a name I cannot yet say as it describes the setting I am considering and think I should keep secret at least until I know if it's likely true," will be an Ultimate RPG. You will have customized Avatar homesteads and real roles to play in a deep, beautifully realized highly interactive virtual world. It will have virtues and the hero's journey reflected back to the player. It will have the best of synchronous and asynchronous features in use. Fiction will support your arrival from earth into this new world. I even hope to make maps, coins and other trinkets available to players of the game.

But, please be understanding. It took 25 years to craft all the detail in Ultima. The new world will start smaller, thinner and lighter. It will have fewer features than some or most MMOs. Critical elements of the story I have just told may be missing upon launch. But fear not, this is where we are headed. Come play with us in the brave new world. Help us grow it. Teach us about what you have learned in your years of playing. Invite in your new friends who are new to gaming. They will be a new spirit and provide new ideas about what to do. They will likely not tolerate bad instructions, bad interface or huge upfront fees, which is a good thing! We will teach and learn from them as well.

If you want to read the entire (and impressively-long) post, you should head over to Garriott's Facebook page. It's actually a fascinating trek down Memory Lane from one of the biggest names in the industry. Fair warning, though: This will probably take longer than your average coffee break to work through.

Source: Facebook via Massively

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Lord British. A name that brings one event to mind, during UO when a player actually PK'ed him during an in-game event when he was supposed to be unkillable.

That being said, I was in love with UO until EQ came out and I can see Mr. Garriott possibly making a decent MMO if he puts his mind to it (and hires some excellent designers). Unfortunately Tabula Rasa's horribad failure is still fresh in my mind, and I have to wonder if Richard is just a bit too out of date to make an MMO that is "fresh" and "exciting". Sorry bro, but you're too old.

WTF is Ultimate Online? An online disc throwing game?!

Ultima-te online? **raises eyebrow** really? Hes cheaply ripping off his own game?

Ignoring the fact that his list for the "ultimate" RPG is the same generic crap we see from any developer, exactly how is the guy relevant beyond Tabula Rasa (which in part due to horrible developer cohesion, failed)?

And, though not included on here...

It is clear to me that I, Richard Garriott, am an essential ingredient of at least the Ultimate Ultima, if not more broadly the Ultimate RPG. Perhaps one day, now that the people who pushed me out of EA more than a decade ago are long since gone, EA will recognize that together, we could rebuild that franchise in a way that they have failed to do in the intervening years. Richard Garriott is an essential ingredient in the Ultimate Ultima!

How can anyone else see him as anything more than an overly arrogant bugger?

y'know there is a phrase i thinks need more widespread appreciation: lightning seldom strikes twice in the same place.

in a world full of endless derivative crap and sequels and people trying to recapture or endlessly pursue careers built on off the back of former glories we'd probably all be better off if we got a bit more realistic and just called it for what it is.

if Richard Garriott EVER comes close to making agame with the same impact as Ultima again i'll wear the same underpants for a month then eat them unwashed on youtube.

if Richard Garriott had a brain bigger than his ego he'd take his 32 mil and go on a very long holiday.

Ultima X: Odyssey

Please.

It might give Elder Scrolls a run for its money.

EverythingIncredible:
Ultima X: Odyssey

Please.

It might give Elder Scrolls a run for its money.

if done right
remember Ultima 9 =P
if it's gonna be a new Ultima game, I'd like it's story to be the same caliber of Ultima 6

teh_Canape:

EverythingIncredible:
Ultima X: Odyssey

Please.

It might give Elder Scrolls a run for its money.

if done right
remember Ultima 9 =P
if it's gonna be a new Ultima game, I'd like it's story to be the same caliber of Ultima 6

Or 4, or 5, or 7, or 7.5.

I'm calling bullshit, but maybe that's because i remember another overconfident eccentric make that promise and failing more and more miserably with each attempt. Okay, maybe that's not fair, Fable 2 was a slight improvement over The Lost Chapters, but really, if there is hope for the RPG genre and MMOs it's not coming from a western developer with a bizarre nickname, at least not with the current climate.

EverythingIncredible:
Or 4, or 5, or 7, or 7.5.

if you mean the stories, yeah, they were all pretty good
but 6 has a special place in my soul, since back when I first played, it did made me feel like I was guilty of fucking up an entire race =P

Ah, I gave up on Garriot after Tabula Rasa, one of my all time favourite MMO's it was shut down a year or so after launch. Garriot gave us the old:

'Oh, oh it wasn't me! I flew off into space and they shut it down behind my back!' escuse

That was the fourth, and last time I ever fell for the old 'Flying to space, not my responsibility' excuse. Guess I at least learned something at least.

Pyramid Head:
I'm calling bullshit, but maybe that's because i remember another overconfident eccentric make that promise and failing more and more miserably with each attempt. Okay, maybe that's not fair, Fable 2 was a slight improvement over The Lost Chapters, but really, if there is hope for the RPG genre and MMOs it's not coming from a western developer with a bizarre nickname, at least not with the current climate.

PLEASE. Garriot's track record is simply uncomparable to Molyneux. Petolyneux is a blowhard with a record of never achieving anything he sets out to - and often achieving the EXACT OPPOSITE *coughFableChoiceConsequence*cough*.

Garriot has consistently attained his visions, even if corporate success is not guaranteed, I have vast faith in projects under his guidance.

Damnit this sounds like an MMO.
Make a single player RPG Richard. Please

Ok, I know we have an obesity problem, but since when does describing a game as "smaller, thinner, and lighter" sound like a good idea?

cursedseishi:
Ignoring the fact that his list for the "ultimate" RPG is the same generic crap we see from any developer, exactly how is the guy relevant beyond Tabula Rasa (which in part due to horrible developer cohesion, failed)?

And, though not included on here...

It is clear to me that I, Richard Garriott, am an essential ingredient of at least the Ultimate Ultima, if not more broadly the Ultimate RPG. Perhaps one day, now that the people who pushed me out of EA more than a decade ago are long since gone, EA will recognize that together, we could rebuild that franchise in a way that they have failed to do in the intervening years. Richard Garriott is an essential ingredient in the Ultimate Ultima!

How can anyone else see him as anything more than an overly arrogant bugger?

If his aim is a new Ultima game, or to build an Ultima Online 2 (The series that built the RPG genre and a sequel to the father of the current MMO respectively.) Having the man who's vision the damn things were in the first place being the one to do it, is rather freaking essential no?

ZeroMachine:
Ok, I know we have an obesity problem, but since when does describing a game as "smaller, thinner, and lighter" sound like a good idea?

I like it and from what he said it could be inferred that our collective actions will shape the world we play in significant ways.

I could have sworn that Akalabeth was nicknamed Ultima 0.

Hmmm, well we'll see where this goes. I have fond memories of Ultima and would be willing to give Lord British another chance, though I am admittedly somewhat disappointed to see he is apparently not going to be returning to Brittania after the amount of my youth that was spent there.

From a marketing perspective I can see why he wants to do something similar but hit a giant "reset button" for the younger generation to get a larger pool of people interested from the very beginning, the issue of course being that once he shows his willingness to totally abandon something like Brittania it's going to be difficult to get involved in his new project, knowing that he might very well turn around and do the same thing again.

At any rate, I'll keep an ear out, I'll probably at least look at this when he gets something out there.

Spoony's been reviewing the games he's made in the past specifically the ultima series and I'm interested in him making games again.

If I get into the beta, it's guaranteed to fail, considering that was the conditions fulfilled that allowed me to join the TR beta.

 

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