The Herald

UO Herald - Lore

Sacrifice

5/17/2019

As we continue the story of Rising Tide we invite you to sit back and enjoy, Sacrifice.

By EM Malachi

Those guarding the shore of the Isle of Deeds saw the pirate sloop before they noticed the rowboat it was pursuing. It was clear the small craft had a head start, but one man rowing could not match the wind for speed.

The knight in command made the call to protect the fleeing boat, ordering the Hold’s cannons to track the pirate ship. When a few shots came close, the pirate ship veered to avoid the fortified island, but its crew fired a parting shot at the rowboat. Striking the side, the cannonball obliterated the boat, sending its occupant flying.

The knight commander was surprised when he saw the survivor crawling out of the surf. The man struggled to stand after the swim. It was a young pirate with a longsword strapped to his back. He was clutching a stone object tightly to his chest. Seeing the line of knights, he held out what he was carrying before collapsing.

*****

The Lord of the Den had demanded ships, and the Guild had heeded Hook’s command. Every galleon, brigantine, and sloop was deployed with the purpose of cutting off Britannian sea routes. Shipbuilding efforts in Yew and Minoc were set ablaze. The pirate fleet brazenly sank merchant ships docked in Moonglow. A night’s skirmishes with the Royal Navy in Brittany Bay left the entire city without sleep.

Because of the chaos, the fleet preparing to retake Valor Island was instead ordered to join the blockade of Buccaneer’s Den.

*****

The old gargoyle ran a talon over the Rune of Valor. “I see a powerful corruption here and the rot is spreading, moving through the connection toward the shrine itself. There is something else too. A darkness on the edge of my vision. Whatever power this Rankin tapped into, I do not believe even his death will end the spell.”

Mariah was distraught. “That is why I need answers from the Codex. May I borrow the necessary artifact from the gargoyles? I need to save the rune.”

Naxatillor gave a sad sigh. “My friend, you already know what you must do. Healers from both our peoples know that a limb cannot always be saved, but it is the greater whole that matters. To save the shrine, you must sacrifice the work of your friend.”

“Do you have any idea how hard that is? This was Julia’s final masterwork. She gave her life for me, and her spirit came to me for help. I owe her this.”

The gargoyle painfully extended his wings. They still bore scars that Naxatilor had received when the seer had peered too far into the Ethereal Void. He looked so very old. “I have outlived all of my hatchkins. I would trade the mantle of age and all I am to see their faces again. What I do now, I do for the world they died to build, a world they never got to see. A world where my people live and work with humans and elves and Meer and others for the greater good. So their sacrifice was not in vain.” “For what she lived for, you must be the woman Julia died to save.”


UO Herald - Contest

Congratulations Keep Design Contest Winners!

5/16/2019

We know you are going to LOVE these designs!  We are continually amazed at the creativity of Britannia’s architects and we are excited to announce the following keep plots will be available when Forgotten Treasures is released worldwide,

The fortress of Lestat by Lestat

Citadel of the Far by voice

Keep Incarcerated by Nick Carraway

Desert Rose by obsidian

Sally Trees by Cinderella

8 of Hearts by Clover

Congratulations again to all the winners!

See you in Britannia,

UO Team


Forgotten Treasures TC Release 2

5/14/2019

Greetings,

We are pleased to announce the second Test Center release of Forgotten Treasures will be available today after 4pm ET! Forgotten Treasures is the second in our High Seas themed content updates for the year and we are excited to bring a fresh perspective to Treasure Hunting and Cleanup Britannia. This next installment of Forgotten Treasures brings new mechanics to Treasure Hunting as well as new decorative items, equipment, and more! Please be sure to check out the publish notes for the latest updates, and participate on the UO Forum in the latest discussions.

We would also like to invite everyone to participate in a public test event beginning today and running through the weekend. Hop on to TC1 and say hello!

Please note – if you plan to test anything on TC1, especially Treasure Hunting, you will need to patch up to the latest client. When you head back to production, you will see this updated client text – do not be alarmed, this is normal and expected behavior.

See you in Britannia,

UO Team




UO Herald - Lore

Call to Valor

5/2/2019

The story of Rising Tide continues and we invite you to sit back and enjoy, The Call to Valor.

By EM Malachi

The flawless stone was inlaid with a gold sword. Sir Simon watched as the builders adjusted the central marble feature of the new shrine. “The Shrine of Valor will be difficult to maintain and protect here. I wonder why you didn’t build it on the Isle of Deeds. The knights of Serpent’s Hold would have stood vigil over it at all times.”

The young king shook his head. “While I appreciate the chivalry of the Order of the Silver Serpent, I do not want the shrine to become a symbol of martial strength. Valor is not a weapon for the strong, but a calling to protect the weak. This place is about the acts of courage that any may be called to perform. Valor is something to strive for, to make a pilgrimage for.”

*****

Mold and rot covered the vegetation around the shrine, and the air thrummed with a rancorous magic. Rankin adjusted the blackened silver glyphs he had placed around the Rune of Valor.

“You promised me incredible power if you could tap into the leyline here. Instead, you seem to be making this island uninhabitable,” said Hook. The pirate lord let out his frustrations by kicking a rock directly at the shrine.

“I told you this would take time. The shrine’s very nature is resisting me, but with the Rune, I will win in the end.”

*****

It was before dawn when the old knight with trembling limbs approached the shrine. He paused for a moment to compose his words. “It seems a lifetime ago that I promised myself I would come here. My last squire long ago attained knighthood. My victories are forgotten. I no longer have the strength to fight, but I don’t know how to give up this life.”

The knight drew his sword but lost his grip, and the blade fell to the ground. Close to tears, he slowly bent down to retrieve the sword, but as his shaking hand moved closer, the sword began to sink into the earth. When it was gone, there were only small red flowers lit by the rising sun. 

The old man bowed his head and whispered, “Thank you.”

*****

The young pirate covered his face with a cloth as he cleared dying trees that had fallen near the shrine. The foul air made those who breathed it sick after a while. Jasir was not happy to have to keep debris from interfering with the dark rite. This was a place for knights and heroes, not for blight and curses.

When he was a child, his mother had told him stories of chivalry and great battles, wishing more for Jasir than the poverty of the Nujel’m slums. Looking at his grubby breeches and the cutlass at his side, the pirate wondered if she would be disappointed if she could see him now. When he had left that island so many years ago, Jasir never expected to crew alongside murderers, orcs, and necromancers.

The setting sun through the trees glinted off something near the shrine. Moving closer, Jasir saw a sword, untouched by rust. On the blade was an inscription: Protect those in need. Jasir picked up the sword and felt its heft. It was heavier than he expected, but it felt right in his grip. With his other hand, he drew the rusted cutlass and tossed it to the ground.

As he smashed the silver glyphs around the Rune, the new knight wondered if he would see his mother again.


Forgotten Treasures TC Release 1 – Update

4/18/2019

Greetings,

We have updated TC1 with the latest release of Forgotten Treasures to include the following updates,

  • Resolved issue where loot generation in treasure chests would not function properly and could lead to characters ending up in a broken state.
  • Temporarily removed locks and traps on all treasure chests to focus on loot for testing purposes.
  • Resolved issue where decoding a treasure map could result in errors.

Thank you to everyone who has taken an early look at Forgotten Treasures and we look forward to your continued feedback on the forums.

See you in Britannia,

UO Team


UO Herald - Contest

Publish 105 Keep Design Contest Important Dates

4/18/2019

Greetings,

Please take note of the following important dates as they relate to the Publish 105 Keep Contest.

Contest Started/Signup – Wednesday, April 17, 2019 3:35:22 PM GMT-4:00 DST

First Vote Begins – Wednesday, May 1, 2019 3:42:02 PM GMT-04:00 DST

Second Vote Begins – Wednesday, May 8, 2019 3:42:02 PM GMT-04:00 DST

Vote Tally – Saturday, May 11, 2019 3:42:02 PM GMT-04:00 DST

We look forward to seeing many great designs this time around!

See you in Britannia,

UO Team


Forgotten Treasures TC Release 1

4/17/2019

Greetings,

We are pleased to announce the first Test Center release of Forgotten Treasures will be available after 4pm ET! Forgotten Treasures is the second in our High Seas themed content updates for the year and we are excited to bring a fresh perspective to Treasure Hunting and Cleanup Britannia. This is only a small part of what’s to come in Forgotten Treasures but we are eager to bring you this early look and get your feedback as we work through the public testing process. Please be sure to check out the publish notes for the latest updates, and participate on the UO Forum in the latest discussions.

We would also like to invite everyone to participate in a public test event beginning today and running through tomorrow afternoon. Hop on to TC1 and say hello!

Please note – if you plan to test anything on TC1, especially Treasure Hunting, you will need to patch up to the latest client. When you head back to production, you will see this updated client text – do not be alarmed, this is normal and expected behavior.

See you in Britannia,

UO Team


UO Herald - Lore

Sea of Tears

4/16/2019

As the story  of Rising Tide continues and we invite you to sit back and enjoy, Sea of Tears

Sea of Tears

By EM Malachi

In the large iron-girded aquarium, the nixie in chains sang to herself. The song started as a wordless child’s melody of warm seas, full of wonder and beauty. It became a dirge as the song spoke of her capture and years of captivity. The final verse rose into a defiant ballad of escape. Her voice channeled the magic around her, fighting the manacles holding her. The iron resisted, glowing red and burning against the bracelets of scars around her wrists.

When she could bear the pain no more, she fell silent, the spell song breaking in a shower of sparks. Across the room, there came a mocking applause. Noxum turned her head toward the pirate lord with a small wooden chest under his arm. She looked away. “You have returned. You didn’t die.”

“You shouldn’t sound so hopeful.”

“I’m always hopeful.”

“Sea elf, hope has no place here, nor do any more escape attempts.”

Noxum held up the cooling manacles. “This cannot be suffered forever. Even death would be preferable to this existence.”

Hook scowled. “I have never harmed a scale on you.”

“Only because you see me as part of your collection, something to be owned. But I have witnessed your cruelty to others. I will never forget what you are, nor be a willing part of it.”

Hook shrugged, as he put down the chest. “Your approval is not required.” He removed the Rune of Valor from a bed of cotton and held it up to the lantern. A cut on his hand left blood on the etching of a sword on the Rune’s surface.

Something about the Rune made Noxum remember an old ballad about a nixie who saved her kin from a shark. “What is that rune to you? Something else for your treasure pile? Something to ransom with?”

Hook laughed. “On no. This is a weapon.”

*****

Hook watched as Rankin placed various objects in the circle around the rune. “Are the human bones really necessary? I thought they were the props of dramatic little pretenders.”

Rankin adjusted a femur. “Normally, you would be correct. Skeletons aren’t actually required for necromancy, but there was one Pagan school I wasn’t able to learn because it’s in the blood and marrow of a person.”

“How did you come by these? I can’t image the owner gave them up willingly.”

“When the Tempest died resisting capture, her body made its way to a friendly gravedigger. I have been saving her final blood magic for a special occasion.”

Rankin placed a final grinning relic at the North position. “Oh, Mordea. You had such beautiful blood. A pity the Royal Guard spilled so much of it.”

Hook tapped his foot impatiently. “So an old friend’s bones will give us the shrine?”

“As I explained, this is only the first spell of many. Still, I believe you will appreciate the effect. Now I need to begin chanting, so no more glib comments.”

*****

With a storm to the north and shallows to the south, escape was impossible. The Royal Navy had chased the Crown Jewel and its pirate fleet from the Cape of Heroes to just off Valor Island. With more ships and cannons, the fleet admiral was confident they would crush the pirate scourge in a single confrontation.

A small pirate ship had already fallen to the naval cannons. Assuming that the pirate leader was trying make a break for open ocean, the admiral had ordered full sail. He was surprised when the pirate crews lowered sail.

There was a sudden pressure change, and the waters churned around Valor Island. The storm at the fleet’s back surged south, growing in both intensity and fury. The wind and water smashed against the naval fleet. The sailors hurried to lower the sails, all fully unfurled for the chase, but half the armada lost masts in the first few minutes. Crews who managed to lower their sails were helpless as their ships ran aground off the coast and were raked by heavy cannon fire.

While a few ships managed to skirt the storm and retreat, Britannia had lost half its southern fleet. Watching the destruction from the Crown Jewel, Rankin laughed. “Those fools in Moonglow will respect me now.”