A week ago, I finally sat down and cleaned out my ancient Ultima Online account, picking up a thousand items from my house and putting them in my characters’ inventories and banks in preparation to cancel my sub. That included at least 300 messages-in-bottles, which are the seafarer’s version of treasure maps. My fellow podcasters teased me for hoarding, but fishing up treasure in my boat on the high seas has been my favorite activity in Ultima Online for the past many years, and so I wanted to hang on to those little quest-starters for future me. In the meantime, my account is ready to hibernate for a bit, and I was feeling a little less cluttered.
And then Friday, what drops in my inbox but the first Ultima Online newsletter of the year, in which Broadsword announces that the big 2019 content will be centered on… the high seas. Just when I thought I was out, they pulled me back in!
“Since its release in 2010, High Seas has been one of the most commonly talked about additions to Ultima Online,” Broadsword Producer Bonnie “Mesanna” Armstrong explains. “It comes up at meet and greets, the various player gatherings we’ve had over the years, the forums, and in feedback we receive directly. We are excited to announce the theme for 2019 will be focusing on the High Seas! […] The first Publish of 2019 is Publish 104 – Rising Tide. Rising Tide will introduce new veteran rewards, a new way to identify hues in the classic client, client performance and accessibility updates, Parry balance changes, quality of life updates to cannons, and more!”
There’s more in store too, as Armstrong says not “every publish going to be about sailing the oceans, fishing, and pirate hunting” although “it’s close.”
“Our goal is to continue to support the events and systems you have come to love while revamping the areas of the High Seas that need it most. In each publish we will be tackling a major High Seas content area and combining it with often requested new features, content, quality of life updates, client updates, tools, and bug fixes. […] March will bring Rising Tide, updating the cannon crafting, ammunition, and firing process! As we sail into the Summer June brings Forgotten Treasures where we will focus on updates to treasure chests on both land and sea! Coasting into Fall we find ourselves confronting Forsaken Foes – a new take on Corgul & Charybdis! Wading into Winter look high for Jolly Roger bringing both cheer and dread to the oceans far!”