Nitpicking means to search for inaccuracies. On Hackiís Ultima Page, we explore and list plot holes, contradictions in dialogues, and logical errors in the manuals and game worlds of the Ultima series. Because rich storytelling, detailed characters, and a huge treasure of background information on the fantasy world characterize Ultima, you can easily spot quite a few flaws in it. Great, but why all the fuss? Easy: Itís just for fun!
An example: The introduction of Ultima IX. The Avatar is in his house on Earth. Uhm... Wait a second! Wasn’t he standing in front of a huge Guardian fortress at the end of Ultima VIII? What happened in between?
See, there we got a nit. Hackiís Ultima Page is dedicated to picking all of them!
To keep things in order, Iíve decided on the following general separation of all nitpicks:
- Ignorance of predecessors
- means that previous titles in the series were disregarded, misunderstood, or ignored. Example: the Underworld in Ultima VI, which has little in common with that of Ultima V.
- Technical shortcomings
- ...flaws that arenít the plotís fault, but rather that of programmers, worldbuilders, and artists. Example: a landscape in a video cutscene that looks completely different than in the game.
- General problems
- deals with everything that does not match the previous two points. Example: the inability of Blackthorn to capture the Avatar more than once in Ultima IX.
Needless to say that you canít categorize every nitpick in a precise way. There are certain borderline cases that could be put in either category. For example, take the Codex lenses in Ultima IX. Their graphical appearance is completely wrong (they are much too small), so itís a technical shortcoming. On the other hand, you know the lenses only from previous Ultimas, which is why they also show us the developersí ignorance of the predecessors of Ultima IX. So where will we put the nitpick? Technical shortcomings or Ignorance of predecessors? In fact, it doesnít really matter. If thereís doubt, then Iíll just decide on the category I believe is right and stick to it.
OK, now you know what nitpicking is about. If youíve found a new nitpick, then please submit it! (Just make sure you have read the rules before you do so.) Hackiís Ultima Page could hardly live on without material submitted by fellow nitpickers.