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What should one feel when one learns that the lackadaisickal liege Lord British is expanding into one’s beloved homeland?  Revulsion, of course.  How dare these opportunistic barbarians move into the Shining Isles with their ugly armor, sweaty unwashed clothes, and cooked fish!  There was nothing to do but try and infiltrate British’s foothold into the chosen country by posing as one of the immigrants, even if it means donning *gulp* horridly unfashionable clothing to blend in.

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After about 3 weeks of relative inactivity in UO, for some reason the Lost Order of Akalabeth has decorated me with the prestigious Ribbon of Roleplaying. It is considered quite an honor, but I can’t help but feel somewhat undeserving of it, since I haven’t done much of anything (except a few walking tours) for 3 weeks, and I consider myself too jaded and disillusioned by the Ultima Online system to be able to really get into my role; Musashi talks more like someone who is commenting on a roleplaying game, rather than a real person, sometimes. (Of course, I talk like this in real life, so perhaps it comes across as being in character.) Nevertheless, I’m grateful for the award… my approach to UO as a non-numbercrunching non-combat freak who lives for absurdity and entertainment and the drudgery of the most boring day job ever imaginable must be working to some extent. (On the other hand, maybe I’m getting an award for my LACK of involvement… 8P)

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I have gotten a comment that this last bit may seem a bit negative and sarcastic. All I can say is… no kidding! It IS negative and sarcastic!

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I have been playing very little UO since I returned from my vacation in August. My time away from compulsive tailoring and running around doing stupid chores for the benefit of others (mostly the guys who loot my house next) has reinforced in my mind how incredibly stupid it all is. I have been in a couple of times, mostly to refresh my house, but have taken a couple of solo walkabouts to see what happens, and besides an occasional wimpy ogre or ettin or some PK’s who are now afraid to attack because of the reputation patch, almost nothing at all happens. In addition, I’m not really making the best use of my digital connection when playing UO, as I CL at least once an hour, and lag is still horrendous even on ISDN.

I’ll give it a little more time, but will not directly tell anyone in-game about my disappointment, or else I’ll be inviting some sort of “let’s cheer up Mu” event or chat which is designed to make me believe that somehow the sense of community is the real reason to play UO, it’s the players that matter, etc. etc. (Of course now someone will read this and it will happen anyway.) This is a valid tactic, and has worked on me before, but after you go through a lot of interesting experiences and belong to several communities throughout your life, it is amazing how easy it is to flow in and out of groups of people, as it should be; you leave a group, maybe keep in touch with one or two people, and move on. Barring this argument, the only reason to stay in UO is that there is no other game like it and it’s revolutionary, which is also true, but this cannot hide the fact that it is buggy, full of idiots, and most importantly, mind-numbingly BORING.

Of course, not everyone in the game is an idiot, and it does have its moments… damn what am I doing, trying to talk myself back into it? We’ll see.

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This totally derivative adventure is blatantly based on the G1 module by Gary Gygax for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (the good edition). Like the original, it promises a flimsy premise and much slaughter. Characters may be of any type, and technically of any number, although 3-6 is suggested.

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