Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

Divinity: Original Sin 2 vs. Ultima 7…

Posted by Rampant Coyote on October 26, 2017

I’m pretty sure one of the reasons I’m such a fan of the Divinity series (particularly the latest Divinity: Original Sin games) is that Larian Studios – and in particular founder and designer Swen Vincke – uses Ultima 7 as their inspiration. Ultima 7 (both parts) has been at or near the top of my list of favorite RPGs since the release of The Black Gate back when I was still in school.

There is so much broken or weird with it that it’s amazing so many gamers feel the same way. I’ve replayed it at least part-way many times since then, and if you are looking to find fault, there’s plenty. But somehow, at least back in 1992, the game transcended all of that.

In some ways, it’s kind of like one’s first kiss. Or first anything. It was memorable because it had nothing to compare it to. Or supposedly it’s memorable. I actually don’t remember my first kiss. Maybe I was too much of a playah as a teenager. To my first-kiss-girl: If you are reading this, I’m really sorry. And I totally messed up my analogy, too. Dang it. Where was I? Oh, well…  By today’s standards, Ultima 7 seems quaint and kind of a mess. But at the time, it was perhaps the greatest demonstration of Origin’s motto, “We Create Worlds.”

But as an article in PC Gamer this week notes… it’s pretty much impossible to live up to that legacy. You could make Ultima 7 today with amazing modern graphics and none of the bugs, and it still wouldn’t compare with its previous incarnation. But I’m very, very glad there are game developers out there, like Larian, that are doing their best to build on that legacy.

PC Gamer: RPGs may never top Ultima 7, but Divinity: Original Sin 2 comes close

Filed Under: Retro - Comments: Read the First Comment

  • lakerz said,

    Ultima 7 + Black Gate were quite the tandem to be sure. Just getting them to install and run properly on my PC was something else.