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Ultima enters Age Of Shadows

World's oldest surviving MMRPG gets Changing Rooms add-on

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Image credit: Eurogamer

EA's Origin studio has announced that development is underway on yet another expansion pack for their long running massively multiplayer role-playing game Ultima Online. Despite being over five years old and featuring graphics that are politely described as antiquated, the game has a strong online following, with 225,000 subscribers still playing it. And those fans can now look forward to the emergence next year of the Age Of Shadows, which is being touted by EA as the most ambitious expansion to the game so far. Heading up the list of changes is a new realm for players to explore, dozens of new monsters to slay, and two conflicting new professions to master - the paladin (a holy warrior with "awesome new powers") and the necromancer (dedicated to the dark arts). Meanwhile changes are being planned for the combat and magic systems, adding a host of new spells and items for those of you with an unhealthy fascination with pointy hats, and new combat techniques and weapons for the more gung ho amongst us. But the biggest addition (or at least the one that EA is giving the most column inches to) is the addition of .. drum roll please .. a house design tool. Yes, in true Sims fashion, Ultima Online players can now design and build their own homes, customising rooms, textures and overall structure to create your own dream house. "Housing has been one of the key features of UO since its launch in 1997, [and] we are continuously looking for ways to improve and expand the fun factor of owning a home in Britannia", according to Origin bigwig Ben Noel. "Not only will Age of Shadows create more housing availability, but the new custom-design feature will allow all our players much more creativity when building a house." Hoorah. Ultima Online fans wanting to build their own home will have to wait until early 2003, but no doubt you can sit down and choose some colour schemes and fabrics in the meantime... Related Feature - Blackthorn gets revenge on Ultima Online

Source - press release

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