If Adventure and Haunted House defined adventure games for the early consoles, it would be hard to find a game that exemplifies that genre on vintage computer systems, as well as the Ultima series.

Richard Garriott created the first Ultima game, an extremely simplistic game which was barely a step away from a text-based game as a follow-up to an entirely text-based game called Alakabeth. Ultima went over better than anyone expected, and was followed up very quickly with Ultima II: Curse of the Enchantress. The second game was more elaborate in scope and in its graphic look, and it ventured into territory that none of the other Ultimas have touched since: Ultima II opens on Earth, but then offers voyages to other planets in the solar system! (I always remember the bizarre Earth map from Ultima II,
featuring very small scale, blocky approximations of the various continents; judging by how much space one’s character took up on these maps, one’s character must have been approximately 300 miles in diameter!) Ultima II also introduced the keystroke commands which became standard for the next several installments.

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