The Ultima 6 Project was formed in 2001 by Sliding Dragon to develop a remake of Origin Systems’ classic game Ultima VI: The False Prophet with newer graphics and a more immersive engine. Soon assembled under the banner Archon, the team members, who hail from all over the globe, have set about recreating the world of Britannia as a total conversion of Gas Powered Games’ Dungeon Siege, adding an enhanced storyline to bolster intraseries continuity and building on the Ultima legacy in a way that will please fans new and old.
To play The Ultima 6 Project, you will need a fully-patched copy of Dungeon Siege (generally available very inexpensively at Amazon.com, eBay, or other places). You can download the patch for Dungeon Siege here:
If you have Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna, you do not need this patch.
The following are some comments from our founder, Matt “Sliding Dragon” Hutaff, about the creation of the project.
Where’d you come up with Archon?
The position of archon in ancient Greece was one of leadership. We’d like to convey an authoritative image in the world of Dungeon Siege modding.
So “Archon” isn’t the name of the remake?
No, nor is the name of the game “Prophecy,” “Prophet” or “Project.” Those mistakes were the result of poor research by a variety of news sources a few years ago who forgot to ask us our name and instead placed us in the camp of remakes like U5: Lazarus and U4: Elijah.
What’s the official name of the remake?
The Ultima 6 Project, or U6P for short. No colons (U6:P).
Who is on the team?
See the About Archon page for a list of current members. Many people have worked on this project in the past, and we hope to have many more working on it in the future. Want to join? Check out the job listings to the right.
Why remake Ultima VI? It runs fine on most hardware, albeit a bit fast.
The game can benefit from a facelift. We can also fix unresolved plot points and bolster the original story. Modern RPGs aren’t terribly immersive. We’d like to let the Ultimas of old work their way back into the gaming community’s consciousness.
What will I need to own to play the Ultima 6 Project?
You will need to own a fully-patched copy of Dungeon Siege (or Legends of Aranna).
Do I need to own the original game? Where am I supposed to find it?
While we have no way of checking this, we would encourage our fans to purchase the original Ultima VI or the Ultima Collection from Amazon.com or some other site that sells it.
Why did you choose to use the Dungeon Siege engine?
Dungeon Siege was the only engine available that allowed for a robust party system, and did not lock us in to proprietary stat and spellcasting systems. It also allowed full access to the GUI, and many other sub-systems that are locked to most users. Despite its limitations, we still chose it over NWN and Morrowind’s engines after a pretty thorough evaluation of each.
Are you adding new weapons and spells?
There are a couple of new spells, but for the most part we are sticking to the original list, and implementing them in the Dungeon Siege environment. We are probably adding a few new weapons, but for the most part we want to keep it faithful, and simple. No more “Brutally Slicing Longsword of the Ravenously Rabid Badger.”
Are all of the original NPCs going to be used?
The plan is to have all of the original NPCs. There are roughly 200 in the original game. We are probably adding about 100 more, although that may change.
Will NPCs have a schedule?
Yes! Lazarus and Project Britannia both show off our NPC scheduling system.
Are there any exciting new plots or sub-plots?
We’re revamping a good portion of the plot. The original U6 had a lot of promise, but didn’t really live up to it. We want to add more of a sense of warring factions. The original had a handful of gargoyles every once in a while. Not very impressive for an army. We are definitely going to try to flesh out a lot of the mysteries and unanswered questions, and we are adding a lot of mysteriously “missing” buildings that existed in U5, and suddenly weren’t there any more in U6. It’s probably best to leave it at that; we don’t want to give everything away after all.
Will the game be as non-linear as the original version?
No. Certain events at the beginning will be played out in a linear fashion to establish plot, as well as other things that somewhat hamper the complete freedom the Avatar originally had. For example, you won’t be able to immediately use a moongate to get to the Gargish lands.
Will there be branching dialog?
Yes, the engine will resemble the U7-style of branching dialogue by clickable keyword.
How big will the world be?
The current plan is to have the “overworld” be approximately 2,000 square meters wide. This is extremely large for a Dungeon Siege mod, but if you put it in terms of how big it would be in the real world, it’s fairly small (2 square kilometers). The underworld and Gargish lands are going to be somewhat smaller, but still sizeable.
Will you be reusing the original music?
Not only will original music will be reworked, but there will be a considerable amount of new music.
Do you have a tentative release date?
This is a really, really big project, but what we can tell you is this: We’re working on Milestone 1, which should be out by late February. Milestone 2 will be out hopefully by the end of May. There will probably be a grand total of four milestones, and we’re hoping for a feature-complete alpha by the end of ’06. No promises.*
*Note: Version 1.0 of The Ultima 6 Project was released on July 5, 2010. There were over 10,000 logged download attempts within 1 week of its release.