Ultima VI nitpicks

“There always seems to be a quest when you come to visit us, doesn’t there? Some time you should just drop by for tea.”

Beginning with Ultima VI, you should be allowed to nitpick without any second thoughts. Graphics, dialogues, and complexity have dramatically increased. In the rich dialogues with the NPCs, it’s you who chooses the direction the conversation takes. You can hunt deer in the forest or use poles on rivers to get food when you’re hungry. It puts Ultima IX to shame: Instead of having profound chats, you click yourself through predetermined conversations without any chance to interfere, and instead of hunting for food, you may slay Giant Rats to get a few gold coins. Oh well.
The story of the False Prophet is very good and involves a spectacular turn. (Note that in Ultima IX, the ending is already explained in the manual.) There’s enough room for small mistakes...

The following 4 nitpicks are new:

Ignorance of predecessors

  • In a dialogue in Serpent’s Hold, you learn that it’s not possible to resurrect a burnt body. However, in Ultima III, there was a spell called “ANJU SERMANI”, which served exactly this purpose.
    (by Mimu)
  • The introduction with the gypsy must be (as in Ultima V) interpreted such that the Avatar recalls the events of the Ultima IV introduction. But why suddenly those potions? Where are the tarot cards?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • In Ultima VI, you are told how exactly the Orb of the Moons works. This leads to a question about the end of Ultima V. Lord British, the Avatar, and the companions walked through the red moongate, and only the Avatar was taken to Earth. Did the moongate have the ability to read thoughts and sensed that the Avatar wanted to go home and take a shower at last?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Why weren’t the dungeons resealed after the rescue of Lord British?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • In Ultima VI, you are constantly accused of stealing the Codex from the Gargoyles. But you did not! You were sent right back to Earth after consulting it at the end of Ultima IV. It’s the High Council that raised the Codex from the Abyss in the time between Ultima IV and Ultima V. The Gargoyles should go after them.
    (by Sergorn Dragon)
  • Ultima V implied that the Underworld had been created by the magic used to raise the Codex from the Abyss; yet Ultima VI implies it has always been there...
    (by Sergorn Dragon)
  • Empath Abbey was a castle in Ultima V, whereas it has turned into a monastery in Ultima VI.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • When you buy a magic shield in Ultima V, the merchant claims that each of them requires a 100 year ritual to be created (slight hyperbole?), yet in Ultima VI, the armourer Gherick makes you one in the blink of one’s eye.
    (by Mimu)
  • In the past, the observatory was integrated into the Lycaeum instead of being a separate building.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Where is the magic carpet from Ultima V? Shouldn’t one of the companions have it? (Even more mysterious: In Ultima VII, the carpet is going to reappear without any explanation at all.)
    (by Avatarsgarbidge)
  • What happened to the Mystics. Forever lost in Dungeon Doom?
    (by Dino the Dark Dragon)
  • Terri, who has a crush on the Avatar, says:

    “My mother used to tell me stories about you when I was a girl. You probably wouldn’t remember her but she was at the big celebration right after you recovered the Codex.”

    So, a celebration took place after the Quest of the Avatar had been solved. And it is at least indicated that the Avatar himself participated, which contradicts the events at the end of Ultima IV.
    (by Mimu)
  • The book about the First Age of Darkness in Ultima VI talks about how Mondain brought pestilence to Britannia. Yet... there was no Britannia back then, but rather Sosaria and many other worlds.
    (by Hyena of Ice)
  • What happened to the underground tunnels in Yew, which offered refuge to the members of the Resistance under Blackthorn’s regime?
    (by Dino the Dark Dragon)
  • What happened to the Temple of Virtues in Cove? It was there in Ultima IV and V. Did the Gargoyles destroy it? If yes, then why does nobody mention it?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • In Ultima VI, we learn that the Shadowlords once stole the Vortex Cube, which allows you to teleport to any place. If that’s true, then why did they wait until Lord British opened the exit of the Underworld for them in Ultima V?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Why did the Shadowlords never terrorize the Gargoyles in the Underworld?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • In Ultima VI, it’s constantly mentioned that we stole the Codex in Ultima IV. But there are a few problems regarding the Temple of Singularity:
    • In Ultima V, there was a huge lava pool in the Underworld where once had been the end of the Abyss. That lava should have turned the Gargoyle temple into ashes.
    • Shouldn’t we find some remnants of the ancient Abyss entrance in Ultima VI?

    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • The bellringer in Britain tells you about the runes: “There’s a symbol on one side and a letter on the other. Probably spell something out if you put ’em all on a necklace.”. What an odd reference to “INFINITY”. Makes you wonder why the Avatar had to consult the Shrines in Ultima IV to get the letters if they were written clearly on the runes themselves.
    (by Dino the Dark Dragon)
  • In Ultima IV, there is a teeny island northeast of Buccaneer’s Den. One of the merchants of the Den says he has a vineyard there. In Ultima V, the island is in the same place, same shape, same size. But in Ultima VI, now that the graphics are detailed enough to show vineyards, the island is no longer there.
    (by Gallara)
  • New nitpick: Deceit has the wrong look in Ultima VI. It was made more than clear that Deceit was constructed by human hand, and that’s how all Ultimas (Ultima V, too) handle the dungeon, except of Ultima VI. Here it’s a dirty hole in the earth. (Just to be turned back in Ultima VII.)
    (by Tribun Dragon)

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Technical shortcomings

  • Britannia is a sphere! Yeah... uhm... no, it’s flat... Is it? No, Britannia has in fact become flat. All of a sudden, the dark Middle Ages have returned in Ultima IV.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • The main entrance of Empath Abbey should be south, not west...
    (In Ultima IX, the 180 turn will be finished, but this will be the least of problems then...)
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Until Ultima V, Castle British was located east of Britain. Since Ultima VI, it’s north of Britain... It’s illogical, considering the location of the Britannys in Ultima V.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Where have the city walls of Jhelom, Moonglow, Minoc, Britain, and Yew gone after Ultima V? It’s war time, and you’d think city walls are important.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • The Orb of the Moon’s appearance doesn’t match its description from Ultima V (“a small, red sphere”).
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • During a conversation in the mint, we are shown the three different coins of Britannia. As the coins are specially mentioned, one big question arises: Why don’t they appear in the game?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • You have to wonder if the Steal spell was ever outlawed. (I’d say the Great Council messed it up once again.)
    (by Azurio)
  • The Avatar refuses to cross two feet wide streams, yet he happily walks on lava.
    1. Why doesn’t he simply wade through? The water can’t be that deep.
    2. Or why doesn’t he use a large enough wooden board as a bridge?

    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • In the introduction, the Avatar still wears his Earth clothes. Yet when the game starts, he appears in his Avatar outfit in Lord British’s throne room.
    (by Hacki Dragon)
  • As for the whole Underworld affair in this game: It can’t be a simple case of the Underworld existing on the reverse side of Britania, either, because the sun and moons will appear in the exact same location in the sky regardless of whether you’re in Britania or the Underworld.
    (by Hyena of Ice)
  • You can fly the balloon over the Void and warp to the other side of the map in Ultima VI. So the world model (torus, square lined with teleporters, or whatever) is the same as in the other games. Which makes even less sense now.
    (by Gallara)
  • Gwenneth, if you ask her about a triple crossbow, says she’ll make one but it would take 6 months (or something like that) to finish it. However, even if you wait that long, she’ll never finish.
    (by Gallara)
  • New nitpick:

    In the beginning of Ultima VI, the Avatar races out to the stone circle and spies the Orb of the Moons lying in the circle, and then he picks it up. The error comes in the way it is presented. In between the two scenes, the only graphic detail that changes is the stone is now in the Avatar’s hand. Why did the Avatar look at the stone, go to pick-it-up, the walk back to the exact place he was standing when he first saw the stone, and then examine it?

    (It seems the Avatar has the power of telekinesis.)


    (by Elzair)

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General problems

  • The Underworld is a whole big inaccuracy:
    • Why didn’t we see anything of Gargoyle villages in Ultima V?
    • There is a sky down there? Somehow, this contradicts the dark cave system from Ultima V.
    • If Britannia is flat and there is a sky on the other side, then where does gravitation come from down there?

    (Reminds you of Edgar Rice Burrough’s “Pellucidar”... Let’s just say Britannia is a “Hollow World”, and the center is a small sun. Too far-fetched? Well... yeah.)


    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Why are my cellars not as freaky as the Lycaeum’s? And why did we never see those cellars before?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • More problems with the strange world model of Ultima VI:
    Captain Johne mentions that the Gargoyle world is slowly fading away. This creates a number of problems:
    • If Britannia is really flat and the Underworld is nothing but the other side of the disc, shouldn’t Britannia fade away, too?
    • Why is the Gargoyle world surrounded by the void? Technically, we should see the land mass of Britannia.
    • How’s that supposed to work once the Underworld is gone: You climb down a ladder in a dungeon and suddenly fall down into the void?
    • If Britannia is a sphere and the “Hollow World” theory is true, then the planet would soon crumble down anyway.

    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Isn’t it really amazing that Shamino knows about dungeons he never entered before in his life, as for example the Gargoyle dungeons in the Underworld?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Very strange: We all know that you can’t beat Lord British in combat; That guy is invulnerable. Nevertheless, the good king doesn’t fight against the Gargoyles at the shrines himself but lets his men go into battle...!
    (He doesn’t even help you when you fight the Gargoyles who have appeared in his throne room at the beginning of the game.)
    (by Hacki Dragon)
  • You don’t get to hear a single word from Lord British about the moonstones being lost, do you?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Julia acts as if you had never met her before. Mariah acts like a total stranger as well,
    (by Sergorn Dragon)
  • A possible plot hole, regarding the tablet to translate Gargish. When you talk to Mariah or the gypsy, it sounds as if the Tablet (well, half of it) had just been gotten recently; yet when you talk to the pirates about the other half, it sounds like it has been years.
    (by Sergorn Dragon)
  • The guild master in Minoc really has a nerve! The fate of the town’s shrine (and consequently the fate of Britannia) is at stake, and he wants us to play the flute for him to get the rune... He obviously doesn’t realize how serious the situation is.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • In Skara Brae, Marney, Gideon, and Yorl talk about Marney’s mother being kidnapped by Mondain’s men when Marney was very young. This gives us the impression that all Britannians age at a much slower rate than people from Earth. In later Ultimas, this seems to be contradicted, and only a select few age at a phenomenally slow rate (mainly just Lord British, the Avatar’s companions, and powerful mages).
    (by Hyena of Ice)
  • Some confusion in regards to the Gargoyles’ view of humans: According to all books, humans are something mysterious and alien to Gargoyles. That’s odd considering that two of their three shrines of principles resemble humans.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • Why can’t we just ask Sin Vraal what’s written in the Book of Prophecies? What’s the problem? His detailed and profound knowledge of Gargish culture proves that he can very well read and understand Gargish.
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • A huge mistake in the Book of Prophecies:

    “And the false prophet will cause the underworld to collapse.”

    The Gargoyles consider Britannia to be the underworld!
    (by Dino the Dark Dragon)
  • New nitpick: Isn’t it remarkable that studying one scroll is sufficient for the Avatar to learn perfect Gargish? Learning a language should take much longer... Are you telling me the Avatar is such a clever boy (or girl)?
    (by Tribun Dragon)
  • New nitpick: There’s a (pretty useless) spell to summon a solar eclipse. In doing so, one of the moons jumps in front of the sun and then back! Heck, I believe in much magical power, but this seems a bit on the extreme side, doesn’t it?
    (by Tribun Dragon)

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You discovered a nitpick not yet listed on this site? Send it to me! You are also welcome to use the message board for discussions about nitpicks.

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Impressum:
Name des Betreibers: Christian Hackl
Wohnort: Kapfenberg

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