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ULTIMA 8: PAGAN is a adventure/role-playing game where you play the part of the Avatar. Avatar is the character you have been playing since Ultima I. This time, however, you are suddenly thrown into the evil Guardian's world. The Guardian's world is a desolated place where you are completely alone and have no idea as to where to go or what to do.
Ultima 8 is different from previous Ultimas due to real time combat and playing (such as in Diablo), "obstacle courses", climbing and jumping. You also cannot have a party like in earlier Ultima games. You are always alone.
The music in this game underlines the overall atmosphere, which is dark and mysterious. It is one of the best made music scores and backgrounds for the games of that time.
Controls are completely mouse driven, and need some practice, but it is not hard to master them after learning the basics.
Ultima 8 picks up the plot strands from the last Ultima. If you haven't played any of the previous Ultimas, it feels a little like reading a chapter from the middle of a novel without reading the rest of it. Who is the Guardian? Why the heck do you annoy him so much? You are the Avatar, a guy trying to lead a perfect life, and the Guardian, because of your (previous) exploits, thinks you're a pain in the neck. The Guardian ingeniously decides to put you in his own realm, Pagan, which you enter through a pentagram. You decide that you have to escape, since here the Guardian is worshiped here, and you find out that the only way to do this is by mastering all the magic of Pagan. And there are a lot.
Game play is fun, and relatively bug-free. Unfortunately, the programmers decided to randomly put in a real-time hack and slash combat system, which can make the game next to impossible at times. This, in my opinion, is the biggest downside the game has. Otherwise, it's pretty enjoyable. The game is well-drawn (personality-wise, 'cause they took out the portraits), easy to talk to, and are actually useful. Pretty much everything is, since the game is just a bit too linear. Sure, you can sneak around and steal stuff from houses, but if you're caught, you're immediately incinerated! The game has a good job at drawing you in and can be very rewarding.
The graphics are good animated and beautiful! As for the sound it's great too!
Ultima 8: Pagan is a good game. The game is enjoyable and I recommend it if you're an RPG addict. You won't be disappointed!
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Ultima 6: The False Prophet, Ultima 7: The Black Gate, Ultima 7: Part Two - Serpent Isle, Ultima 5: Warriors of Destiny, Ultima Underworld 2: Labyrinth of Worlds