EA's upcoming Ultima Forever is a strange beast. The name Ultima invokes so many memories that fans of the series can essentially let their imaginations run wild on the possibilities of a iOS MMORPG of something like Ultima Online re-imagined for the modern age. The problem is, if you're hoping for an Ultima Online-like experience, I think you're going to be sorely disappointed as all the social interactions and amazing things that came of the notoriety system in UO are just nowhere to be found in exchange for these short little five minute dungeons that you can see in this video:

Ultima Forever is coming soon, and I'm really curious to see how it's received in the mass market. Admittedly, I have a weird history with the Ultima properties, so it's hard for me to not be disappointed to see those experiences so comparatively watered down. If, however, you've only vaguely heard of the Ultima games, and are looking for a quick dungeon crawler, this might be up your alley.

  • Rothgarr

    I was a huge UO fan, even still log in on a rare occasion. Reading the article depresses me. But I guess at the same time I wasn't expecting the UO experience from UF. I'll still download it when it's available in the U.S. and give it a whirl.

  • Reignmaker

    Looks like it's just milking the intellectual property. What are the in-app purchases supposed to consist of?

    • JohnnyB82

      In app purchases are for healing potions (they drop as rare as epics), silver and gold keys (used for unlocking inventory slots, skill slots and what not). You'll find its the greediest game ever. Name a F2P game and I will compare it if you wish lol

      Off topic, you can't delete your character and start fresh.

  • SoyGreen

    Well... that video showed me enough to know I won't spend a dime on it... probably won't even download it. The combat looks pretty lame and over exaggerated cartoony effects - and the IAP model - where she pretty much admits you can buy your gear in the video - is a no thank you to me!

    • JohnnyB82

      You don't buy the gear. But your gear gets damaged based upon action AND a timer. So even if you play safe, after 20 minutes EVERYTHING gets damage. You CANNOT keep up with repairs as the repairs cost more than what you collect during a typical run.

  • Sunshine

    Well, they never said this was Ultima Online, they said it's Ultima. When you tell me that, I hear Ultima 7, the best of the series IMHO, so the rest of this article is neither here nor there for me.

    Unfortunately the video doesn't sell it. The micro F2P consumable model, the bright cheery graphics, the mood just seems entirely off.

    I'm such a fan that I'll definitely download it to try, but I'm already bracing myself for impact.

    • JohnnyB82

      Ready your wallet if you want to get past level 7 within a couple weeks without immense grinding.

  • Nekku

    Already play'd it back when it hit in the CA AppStore. It's definitely pay2play. Just read the thread n u will get the idea.

    • JohnnyB82

      Little worse than pay to play. More like arm and a leg to play! lol

  • Brendan Braybrook

    you can purchase keys through IAP. keys are used to repair your armor or to open chests (which give you the chance to find better/more equipment). your armor and weapons degrade over time, and surprisingly quickly - it's impossible to keep all your armor repaired with the rate that you earn keys in game, the best you can do is keep your weapon repaired (while all your armor becomes useless). once you hit level 9 it becomes a serious grind where you revisit the same dungeons over and over.

    • Adams Immersive

      Keeping things "in repair" is one of the most obnoxious new trends in consumable IAP!

      • JohnnyB82

        I dont mind armor breakdown, but this game really takes the cake!

        Grinding dungeons over and over (and spending keys to repair your sword as you are naked otherwise) is tedious and slow.

  • Morgan01

    Unless there are drastic changes from when this title was released in Canada, it will ultimately stomp all over any found memories of Ultima fans. The most nostalgia to be found is the name. And for that, you are sure to be overwhelmed by the painful freemium mechanics, the aggressive IAP and blatant paywalls. It's designed to punish your wallet in a rather absurd manner. In Canada, at least, that is how it has been.

    • JohnnyB82

      100% truth. EA should be ashamed.

  • HaunterV

    I'm from Canada. So I've gotten to play it as part of the 'test' market.

    The game runs like crap on the iphone 4 and that's all I have access to so, yeah. I deleted it after playing for like a total of 15 minutes. It never got patched to run better so I gave up on it. Maybe it won't suck on iPad but when all I got is a 4 ... It's not worth the effort.

    • JohnnyB82

      I have the newest iPad and it runs worse than many games which are much more graphically intensive. Main thing is its greedy as S%^#!!!!

      However, their is a patch coming out to correct the speed issues apparently.

      • HaunterV

        Well I'll give it a shot post patch I guess. It's also cross platform. No one seems to mention that... You can play it on pc via Facebook I believe.

  • JohnnyB82

    This game was not hyped, nor intended to be compared to a Ultima Online. It was meant to be compared to Ultima IV with an online component.

    However it contains NOTHING of what Ultima is about. It is the GREEDIEST game I have EVER played. I have played MANY free to play games. For one, if you want your third power slot available at a decent time, its gonna cost $10.00 or more to buy enough gold keys. Also, its currently cheaper to just replace armour instead of repairing it. It can easily cost you $2.00 for ONE, that is right.. ONE dungeon run and its repairs. You HAVE to grind dungeons naked with a sword in order to play for free. And the grind is worse than a korean MMO. Right now, EA needs to stop testing our limits and fix this.

    It is funny that this game has the ultima label as the business model surrounding it is entirely, absolutely and indisputably UN-Ultima. Greediest game EVER. On that note, the game itself has immense potential. If they can fix the greed and make it a free to play game instead of a game that nearly has an hourly rate, they will do well.

    They should be encouraging purchases instead of demanding them. It doesn't help that the gypsy keeps telling you to buy stuff, and use up your potions (they are about $1.00 each by the way).


  • B30

    Just a cheap cashgrab software, from the franchise killer Nr.1 Electronic FARTS, no surprise.

  • Rumand

    I don't understand this. Putting the name ultima on this is supposed to sell it to ultima fans? Ultima fans probably will hate what I see in this video. It looks like it may be alright if it wasn't called what it is. But calling it Ultima brings expectation that what i see in this video does not deliver upon

    • B30

      Yes, they should have called it "GiveUsYourMoney" Forever.

  • john360

    Wow, im disappointed that youvhave to send alot of money just to play this game due to the fact that ea sucks balls now like gameloft atkeast ganeloft doesnt ask you to pay to fix your armor. This game ruined the ultima franchise. What a shame.

  • worldcitizen1919

    Very sorry if this is all true. I wanted Ultima so much but this seems to be what Jobs did to ios before he died. He ruined quality gaming for decades to come.

  • JCat

    I think EA will remain the most hated company in America for years to come.

  • stoned

    Looks like they once more listened to the marketing guys who love to play doodle jump when designing this. I hope it will go down the drain in terms of revenue...
    To all the big studios out there: Start asking the nerds and you will have the chance to hit gold!

  • Vlav

    I posted my review in the main Ultima tread in the forum butso far this game is all built around how much real life$ EA can milk from you...

    1) It cost you (real $) $0.55 to open a chest ( you see multiple chest per hour)

    2). It cost $20 (RL) to unlock all you inventory slots so you ca actually get the chext contains.

    3) It cost you (RL) 4-5$ PER HOUR to repair you gear.

    4) The combat system is managed by the game. Press your 4 skill buttons or heal. ( YOu have to pay RL$ to unlock skill button 2,3and 4. The heal potion are also sold for real $.

    I believe that this game will cost 100 of $ per month to play...

    Worse freemium design I saw so far from any company.

    • Sunshine

      That sounds... terrible. Consumable IAP, where you pay real money for a momentary benefit in a game like a health potion, rather than buying a permanent addition to your game like a new character or map, is the cancer of video gaming.

      As much of an Ultima fan as I am, I will most certainly not be playing this game now πŸ™

  • araczynski

    Not even remotely ultimate, what a waste of potential. POS.

  • Feel Free

    Check out "Ultima Online Forever" instead. It is exactly what you nostalgia chasers are seeking. http://www.uoforever.com

  • Kyoraki

    The good news is the game is shockingly similarly named to "Ultima Online Forever", which is a much more improved and free version of the original. Hopefully, a lot of people will get the two mixed up.

  • Chellspecker

    Yeah, this game is pretty crappy. I'm in Canada and was excited to hear it was being released here first. I downloaded it and ended up spending a bunch of money on in-app purchases before I realized that's basically all this game is about. Whoever came up with the pay-to-play cancer that has infected gaming and those who see swindling your customers as a better way to make money than producing a decent product should burn in hell. It's like they are training a new generation of gamers to expect to pay an hourly rate to play a video game. Good console games are legendary. People look back fondly on the hours of enjoyment they get from saving up for a long-anticipated release and then the hours of enjoyment from playing through a whole narrative. There are decent games on iOS that charge a fair price for a good amount of play value. Pay-to-play is such a transparent cash grab, relying on a larger customer base to initially download the game, maybe make a couple of in-app purchases, before getting sick of the whole thing. The long-term appeal of these games is non-existent, and the more of these stinkers that EA sticks its name on the lower its reputation as a game company will sink until it's on par with Zynga and Big Fish. Which might be what the stockholders would like to see, but not their customers. Time will tell how this all pans out. Oh, and "Ultima For Fifteen Minutes" crashes about that often on my iPad. At least debug it if you want to people to play it. Ultima Forever is the broken slot machine of games.