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Worlds of Ultima: The Savage Empire is a continuation of the long and varied life of the Avatar, the creation of Richard Garriott and the rest of the designers at Origin Systems. In this game, the Avatar teleports to an even stranger world than the realm of Britannia, a place he visits on a fairly regular basis. After a scientific experiment by one of his acquaintances goes wrong, they both find themselves in a strange and foreign land, full of prehistoric creatures and landscapes, but also populated by Neanderthal-like humans and various mythical creatures.
The Avatar's primary goal in this new land, aside from discovering what caused his teleportation to begin with, is to find a way back. Along the way, he has to overcome obstacles like warring native tribes, raids from insect-like creatures, a nearly immortal Tyrannosaurus Rex and, possibly most difficult of all, a lovely, strong-willed native woman. As the game progresses and the Avatar accumulates more followers in his quest, the story continues to unfold but the mystery of his arrival in the world of Eodon remains elusive, even while more pieces of the puzzle are revealed.
Worlds of Ultima: The Savage Empire's main gameplay screen is divided into a few sections. The bottom of the screen has an icon bar representing the various actions in the game like "use," "talk" and "move." The right side of the screen has a character information display, in addition to a general text and conversation region on the bottom half. The rest of the screen is devoted to the main gameplay window and utilizes a top-down, slightly tilted perspective on the world.
As with many CRPGs, the game is a mix of combat, character interaction, inventory management and constant game saving to prevent having to redo all your accomplishments due to an untimely death. Combat is not the game's main focus, however, as several of the game's quests require thought over action and avoiding combat is occasionally even in your best interests.
The game sports 256 color VGA graphics as well as support for Adlib-compatible MIDI music. The songs, composed by prolific musician The Fatman, play continuously throughout the game, ideally surrounding the player with the proper atmosphere of a dense jungle, an abandoned temple or a catastrophic showdown with a Tyrannosaurus Rex.
The game boasts hundreds of NPCs to interact with via its keyboard parser, each responding to sometimes fifty or more key words or phrases. However, if conversation fails, you can expect to hack, shoot and blast your way through all manner of creatures with a mix of ancient and modern weapons including obsidian swords, bamboo flintlock rifles and makeshift bombs.
Persevere long enough in your quest and you finally come face to face with the one man who can clear up the entire mystery behind your purpose in the world of Eodon — the one man who can finally answer all of your questions — but, will he? Join the Avatar in his quest for escape from the Worlds of Ultima: The Savage Empire! ~ Drew Hunt, All Game Guide