Ultima VIII: Pagan is the eighth chapter of the role-playing video game series created by Richard Garriott and published by Origin Systems.
Ultima VIII: Pagan is the eighth chapter of the role-playing video game series created by Richard Garriott and published by Origin Systems. It was released in 1994 for DOS only.
Ultima VIII was the last part of the Ultima series before the franchise took a 5-year break before continuing the series with Ultima IX, launching a Speech Pack and Ultima Online in the middle.
The plot of the game continues the events of Ultima VII: Serpent Isle, where the Guardian grabs the Avatar and throws him through a portal into the sea of the Pagan world. Unlike Britannia, the world to which the player is accustomed, Pagan is a much darker place where there are no Virtues (fundamental in the previous installment). When waking up in this new world, the Avatar is warned that the only way to escape is by mastering the four elements, each of which is handled by a Titan. These figures are the gods of Pagan, and each one protects an element, so the Avatar must overcome several obstacles and defeat them to become the fifth titan and return home. The protagonist finds himself in a fight against time since The Guardian warned him that as long as the hero was banished, he would dominate the earth.
Regarding the gameplay, the title received some changes that bothered several fans. Firstly, the map is much smaller, and the dialogue way shorter. Also, the Avatar, who can only be played as a man, will progress in the adventure on his own without any kind of companions. Then, another aspect highly praised by some and criticized by others is that the entry takes a much more action-driven orientation since there are many more enemies than in previous titles. Similarly, the game received significant improvements regarding the story, which is much darker and involves moral nuances that the protagonist must endure.
The significant enhancement of Pagan comes in the audiovisual section. The graphics have a new quota of realism unreachable in the previous titles. The characters are drawn with sharp lines on their edges, which in-game gives a similar feeling to that provided by the first 3D games. Although the colors are intense, they do not stop being sober, so they do not approach exaggeratedly the fantasy plane. Moreover, the game's soundtrack is excellent. The music is composed of terrifying and uncomfortable tones, which reflect the hypocrisy of the inhabitants of Pagan and are contrasted with those used with the more cheerful sounds of Britannia. The composer was Nenad Vugrinec, and this was his only contribution to the saga, which many argue was the most successful in all of Ultima.
The reception from critics and fans was mixed, claiming that they felt the product was not quite finished but respecting the dark twist of the plot. Much more action-oriented than its predecessors, Ultima VIII: Pagan is a great adventure that any fan of the genre will enjoy. More than 25 years after its release, here's your chance to revive it.
Review by: Gustavo
Published: 18 August 2020 5:55 pm
DOS version 1.1 - Language: English - Size: 10.57 Mb
DOS version 1.1b - Language: English - Size: 12.25 Mb
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