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Outlands, Free Shard of Ultima Online Releases in October

Ultima Online to me was the next natural step to my time in MUDs (more on that Thursday). I enjoyed the concept of Ultima Online immensely, but I spent more time trying to recover after being looted than anything else. It did not feel to me like people held up the Virtues that the Ultima franchise was built on. That’s just the nature of online games though. You can’t make someone be a good person. Now, I have a very strong anti-private server/shard stance, and I always have. It’s a pretty gray area, but personally, I’m not very high on them. Even for games that aren’t available anymore, like Warhammer Online. That being said, I did receive word of an upcoming Free Shard of Ultima Online, entitled “Outlands”. To this day, people are still playing Ultima Online, but it’s not a very modern experience. I suppose that’s what people want – nostalgia. Owyn is half of the team developing Outlands and has been in the works for the past four years. On October 27th, 2018 it’s going to be launched after a nearly 16-month beta.

Despite how I feel personally, I think it’s a pretty fascinating thing to see, a new, free Ultima Online experience that is boasting modern tweaks and quality-of-life changes. It even has a new map that was built over 7500 hours, which is commendable. They have upgraded every aspect of the game and made it, from it sounds like, more accessible. Perhaps this will lead more people to the original game? Now that would be fascinating to see, what kind of numbers come from that. They’ve got thousands of players interested, and a Discord with at least 1600 participants. That’s pretty huge for a free shard/server experience, I have to say. I was glad they reached out though regardless of my feelings for Free Shards/Servers because I do love to see positive communities grow. I’ve only experienced toxicity and disappointment in the Ultima Online community, so it’s a nice change of pace. So if this is your cup of tea, October 27th is the big day. There’s more info in the link below for interested parties. Where do you stand on Free Shards and Servers? Let me know below!

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