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Stygian Abyss a History and lore. [A work in Progress ]

- - - - - abyss history lore progress stygian work

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#1
Tabbitha

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On the UO Stygian Abyss I found this thread which I thought would be good to post over here for all those who came to UO in later years.

Also i thought it a neat idea by the OP to have all this info to hand,for those who will be creating a gargoyle character .

[ plus i just LOVE UO lore :P ]


Rumours started I think as far back as Ultima III.
With Vague references to the Abysss.

Wasn't fully laided out or explored until....Ultima UnderWorld the Stygian Abyss.
this was a PC based 386 single person game. It was the first to fully explore and use First person view point that became popular over the years.

I still have my original Reference card and players guide....as well as my original floppies! ( Although none of my computers have floppy drives anymore)

In this game rune stones were used to cast spells, there were I think 24 different runes that allowed you to cast 40 spells ( 8 levels five spells per level).
It seems to me there were a few bonus spells you could learn and experiment with too!

The dungeon had multiple levels....many with Villians to destroy....and some with Allies to give you quests or help you along your way.

I seem to remember finding a black smith on level 3 and almost crying with joy!
LOL

I would like to see others post here about their memories of the Abyss...lets try and keep this thread on topic, so it will be easy to sift through to eventually create the "History"!


[I shall post just 'history 'here as it gets put up ]

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Game Begins




The player is cast in the role of the Avatar, the protagonist of the Ultima series. After being drawn back to Britannia by an apparition, the Avatar witnesses the kidnapping of a baron's daughter by a wizard. The wizard escapes, and the Avatar is caught by the baron's guards and taken before him. The Avatar is found guilty of the crime and banished to the Great Stygian Abyss, to either rescue the baron's daughter or perish within. The player has to deal with the survivors of a failed colony and, in the end, discovers a plot to summon a demon into Britannia. In relation to the main Ultima series, the game takes place between Ultima VI and Ultima VII.


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The Great Stygian Abyss was first mentioned during the Third Age of Darkness in The Book of Amber Runes by the druid Selzhanik, Arch Mage and keeper of the Ninth Circle. He wrote that it was necessary to survive the Abyss to master the highest circles of the arts of magery...

During the First Age of Enlightenment, the Stranger visited the Abyss on his final step of the Quest to become the Avatar. The entrance to the Abyss was in the mouth of a volcano on a distant island to the southeast (later known as the Isle of the Avatar, which also housed dungeon Hythloth and the Shrine of Humility), guarded by a fleet of undead pirates. In order to access the Abyss, the Stranger had to use the artifacts of the three Principles: the Candle of Love, the Book of Truth and the Bell of Courage.
Battling the hordes of monsters inhabiting the Abyss with his Mystic Weapons and Armor, the Stranger reached its lowest chamber where he found the Codex of Ultimate Wisdom and completed his Quest of the Avatar.

After the Avatar returned to Earth, Lord British and his Council decided to unearth the Codex from the Abyss and put it in a shrine on the Isle of the Avatar. The removal of this great artifact triggered great upheavals in the volcanic Abyss, leading to the sealing of the dungeon and the opening of a great underground complex known as the Underworld. The Underworld later collapsed when the Avatar rescued Lord British from the Shadowlords in Dungeon Doom, destroying the homeland of the gargoyles which fled to the surface and came at war with the humans.

After the peace treaty with the gargoyles, colonists of many different races led by Sir Cabirus opened the doors to the Abyss again and settled in its chambers, but the idealistic colony was later destroyed by internal struggles. Shortly afterwards, the Abyss itself was completely destroyed by a devastating volcanic eruption triggered by the Avatar to prevent a demon called the Slasher of Veils from entering Britannia.

During the last Age of Armageddon, in his final journey to Britannia, the Avatar found a way to unseal once again the entrance to the Abyss, by summoning the Pagan titan of fire Pyros in the former crater of the volcano. At that time, the Abyss had become a nightmarish place void of any Spirituality, where matter itself was separated in the four elements. At the base of the Abyss the Avatar found and disabled the Guardian's Pillar that was corrupting the Virtue of Spirituality.

[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]


#2
Hawkwind

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I have totally been playing this game the past few weeks, for the first time in soo many years. Loving the old style dungeon romp, runnin around starvin' until you get the fishing pole :P If the new dungeon is anything like this one, it will be like a whole new world in there.

Its really too bad that games like this died out, I truly miss games that actually made you think.

While on the topic of Stygian Abyss lore, and the gargoyals... where did the gargoyals come into play there? As far as im aware they lived on the other side of the planet (ambrosia) and the Great Abyss (ultima 5 underworld). I am pretty sure the Stygian Abyss and the Great Abyss are two seperate places in lore, due to ultima underworld: the stygian abyss not actually tying into the story of the avatar, and also not specifically indicating itself as being the same as the great abyss or underworld mentioned in ultima v, where the avatar rescues Lord British, and retreives the lost codex of ultimate wisdom. Probobly not 100% accurate, as i played that game a looong time ago, i just remember the jist of it.

Think of underworld as an official spin off, similar to games like ultima adventures, where in "that" game the lore ties in, however in the rest of the series those events had never actually taken place. This often happens when a popular franchise has 3rd party software companies make a sequel. (sierra and mt.drash, the un-officially pusblished ultima game that caused much controversy)

Anyhoo, hope a dev reads this and decides to pick up the original series and pay "real close" attention to the time lines, and how the world itself changes from game to game. Im pretty sure gargoyals had little if nothign to do with the "stygian abyss" at that time, and once im done this game through once more, I will let everyone know the result ;)

Cheers


Hawkwind

Also, having just started playing ultima 7 again, i noticed while on the Isle of Fire (forge of virtue add-on), and talking to the blind mage, he mentions the gargoyals, and calls them "Balrons" specifically. Were Balrons really meant to be gargoyals? The slayer sure doesent seem to indicate that, if this is true to ultima lore, should a gargoyal slayer not work?

Noticing alot of contradictions in lore between uo and old ultima more and more i play the classics.


Just an Edit, although Ultima Underworld: stygian abyss did not tie into the story of the avatar, Ultima Underworld II: Labrynth of Worlds did, it took place in-between ultima 7: the black gate, and Ultima 7: serpent isle. In this game all the avatars friends from the other games are pretty much with him in the dungeon as npcs, and the story is directly related to the guardian, and Lord british's castle. however as mentioned above, when serpent isle came, those events had never taken place in the story.

#3
Tabbitha

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I so envy you having the old Ultima games to play.I read [ and posted] a thread from Stratics from a couple who have a collection they proudly showed off of all the past games they loved.

Its my hope one day to be able to buy up all the old ones and have my own collection .

Thanks for post and welcome to UOForums if i missed doing that before .:)

[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]


#4
Meiko

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So we can gather from this the next series of quests will be the Bell of Courage.

#5
Tabbitha

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So we can gather from this the next series of quests will be the Bell of Courage.



Who knows :)

[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]


#6
Hawkwind

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the 3 principles are nice, but what ever happened to the 8 virtues ;) i think were still missing a few of those o.O





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: abyss, history, lore, progress, stygian, work