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Wednesday, July 26th, 2006
11:46 am



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Thursday, February 9th, 2006
8:05 am

If you are interested in receiving more information
about our eventual Beta release,
please leave your information here!

Thank you,

- greensidhe

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7:20 am

Hello, fullxthrottle

It's kind of you to friend us,
but all of our entries at the moment are locked
to admins and staff only
(still in the creative phase).

Could you tell us a bit about yourself
and how you found us?

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Saturday, December 31st, 2005
10:21 pm

Shard emulation

Technically-inclined fans of Ultima Online have reverse-engineered the game to produce emulators of the original game servers. This emulation is legal, and EA is aware of its existence, although in certain countries the authors of these emulators are considered to have violated their software license by reverse-engineering the game, and may be banned from the official UO servers as a result (other countries don't allow restrictions on reverse engineering). To stay legal, emulation servers do not distribute the official EA client files, and the users of the emulation software must not charge their players to be able to play on their individual shards. Even knowing they can't make any money from their work, this hasn't stopped UO enthusiasts spending countless hours producing excellent free-shards that rival the official EA ones.

With emulators, coders and players alike can enjoy a much larger variety of playstyles and UO time periods. From the Pre-T2A era, to the era of Samurai Empire, to fully customized shards which don't even seem like UO anymore. A few shards encourage or enforce their players to roleplay and remain in-character, while far more encourage PvP combat.

Ultima Online emulation has become quite a phenomenon, no other MMORPG had as many different emulators over the years, and none have achieved the quality of emulation provided by the various UO emulation teams.

While many players choose to play on emulated servers to avoid the monthly fee of the official servers, a good part of them migrated away from the official servers because of disagreements in the changes the developers made to the original game play over the years. In recent years, the number of people who have begun playing on emulated servers without first playing on official servers, has been increasing. This is partly due to several free releases of the official client for download, as well as advertisement of the game by those who either create or support emulated servers.

Nowadays, some servers rival the official ones in size and quality. It is possible to find complete and well-populated servers emulating the world as it was in the days before the Renaissance expansion pack as well as servers that provide support for all expansion packs to date. Many European and Asian servers boast of very high numbers of players, as well as extremely customized features, while a higher percentage of American servers have been predominantly small and less customized. This may in part be due to the fact that most of the mainstream emulation software is accessible to English-speaking countries, so there is more incentive for potential players to create their own instead of playing on somebody else’s.

Part of the reason why emulation in Ultima Online has been so successful is the relatively open format of the game's software; it is possible to change the server the game client connects to by merely editing an ASCII text document, although many modern emulators require that the client packet encryption be turned off as well. Removing the packet encryption can be accomplished by either removing it from the client’s executable (as UORice does) permanently, or by circumventing it on a per-use basis by either filtering the packets or modifying the client each time it is ran (such as UOGateway does).

Today, it is commonplace for many custom servers to not only feature custom game play, but also custom media, such as graphics and maps, as well. Almost all of the UO client files have been reverse-engineered, and a whole slew of editing software has arisen. With the addition of custom maps, graphics, and even sound, some of the more custom UO servers are barely recognizable as emulations of the original game at all.

- Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultima_Online)

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Friday, December 2nd, 2005
12:02 am - Script Update

Implemented and Tested:
Advanced Spells/Abilities (In spellbooks/scrolls)
Possess Script
Weblink Stone (Needs customization but works)

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