Strategy suggestions for playing 'Ultima I' are presented in this file, which is divided into five sections: I) The Beginning, II) The Dungeons, III) Space Travel, IV) Saving the Princess, and V) Battling Mondain. Descriptions of the terrain of the four continents of Ultima are provided in the next file, entitled 'Layout.'
Once you create your character, and endow him or her with race, type, and attributes, you are ready to begin your adventure. Each race and type of character has its own advantages and disadvantages. Obviously, a fighter is vicious in battles, wizards or clerics throw potent spells, and thieves are good at thievery. Experiment with different characters. Your first step, upon finding yourself in the middle of a grassy plain, is to ready your armour (leather) and a weapon (dagger). Thus prepared, you may then begin to explore the world of Ultima.
You will encounter a number of strange creatures during your travels. On land, you will find Orcs, Evil Trents, Hoods, Knights, Bears, Wandering Warlocks,
Necromancers, Hidden Archers, Thieves, Dark Knights, and Evil Rangers. In the ocean, there are Giant Squid, Ness Creatures, Dragon Turtles, and Giant Octopi. It is likely that you'll be killed quickly. If so, you will be reincarnated. (If you're reincarnated in the middle of water, keep trying to move or attack. These actions will use up your food and hit points, and you'll be reincarnated again -- hopefully on land the next time.) However, your resurrected self is lacking in food, gold, and weapons. Take heart! Although the process of building up your points and possessions seems slow, if you persevere you will 'ultimately' be victorious.
The following strategy hints should be helpful:
1) It is often advisable to avoid combat. Try to run away from an enemy until you can build up your hit points.
2) Buy and steal as much armour as possible. If you are killed, you will retain your armor, vehicles, and spells, but you will lose your weapons.
3) To increase your gold supply, you can sell some of your armour.
4) As soon as possible, descend into a dungeon. By entering a dungeon and killing a number of creatures, you will gain hit points, experience points, and gold (and food, if you're killed in a dungeon). You can do this again and again, building up your character.
5) Always buy a drink from Varg the tavern keeper in a pub. He may give you some helpful clues.
6) As you gain experience points, you will find that more advanced weapons and transportation become available in the cities. Items such as pistols, blasters, and phazors are invaluable in battles (in fact, sea creatures will be 'out of weapon range' until you get a hold of, at least, a set of bow and arrows). By a strange quirk in the game, you may be able to steal technologically advanced weapons or armor even before they're available for purchase! Use of a vehicle will conserve your food supply during your travels. Seagoing vessels and air cars allow you to visit islands and cross oceans. Once you've obtained a frigate or an air car, you can use its cannons or lasers to fire on enemies. A space shuttle will be required for space travel.
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