Why I play UO: Relying on Others and Building a Community
Ultima Online Forever is still my game of choice these days, so I thought I’d give you all an update on what’s been going on in-game and some of the reasons why I continue to enjoy a game nearly 15 years old.
Relying on Others: A slightly different take
Often this topic centers around having to group with people to take on PvE encounters (forced grouping), but I had an experience yesterday where I willingly chose to rely on other people to help me with something economy related. A guild member of mine was showing me something when we came upon a location he uses to farm wool from sheeps. He said, “I’m hesitant to show you this location because then you won’t need wool anymore!” I thought about it for a second, and what he said is true; if I decided to farm this on my own then I wouldn’t need to pay him for wool anymore. However, taking the time to go out and sheer the sheep is yet another activity I would have to add to my already busy schedule in-game. I told him I can’t take the time to do that, so I want him to continue to be my supplier of wool.
I formed a relationship with another player wherein we both benefit from each other, and rely on each other. He needs money, and I need wool. I have created similar relationships with several other players. One random person I’ve never actually met before approached me and wanted to supply me with a modest sum of Iron ingots once a week. I have come to rely on this individual because, once again, I don’t have the time to go out and mine iron ingots. I have yet another relationship with 2-3 other players who supply me with various types of leather.
If not for these many other players, I would not be able to play UO the way that I do. I enjoy creating things, selling them, coming up with ways to improve my margins, and ultimately profiting from my time and relationships with others. If not for having to rely on other people, I would be left with a completely hollow experience.
Haven has a fence!
Our guild, Haven, has a city (Haven City) located East/NE of Britain. We’ve been here for a while now, placed a dozen or so houses, and even attracted some neighbors we enjoy having around. We have created a tiny little sub-community that seems to grow every day. Haven has a great history on UOForever. We were the first to place a house, first to place a second house, were the first to GM many of the crafts, and we’re ultimately responsible for spreading the fact that this server exists to a great many people.
To thank us for playing (and being awesome if I do say so myself), the server admin placed a permanent fence around our existing city in order to symbolize our unity, our status, and recognize us as an official community.
We were talking on ventrilo last night about how we haven’t had this much fun in a game in a long time. I attribute almost all of that to both the reliance on other players, and the fact that we have built a community that feels like it is permanent.