Ultima VII Part II: Serpent Isle

A Treatise on Torture

by Evad, Royal Servant to the King of the White Dragon

I have been given the privilege of chronicling the King's romp through madness. As a reward, I will be slain quickly. His Majesty began with a commoner named Patric, stretching him on the rack. By his own hands, His Majesty turned the man to a babbling wretch over the course of twelve hours.

...After boiling the flesh from a family of farmers, His Majesty became inspired. He restrained a noble, a guest at the great banquet, upon the torture table and applied tourniquets to each of his limbs. One by one the limbs became useless strands of dead flesh. He showed mercy on the victim by killing him only five hours later by opening numerous small wounds on his person and letting him bleed to death.

The King of the White Dragon killed his own wife by slaying a bull, slitting open the carcass, and placing her, tied securely, into the opening. He then sewed the opening shut such that naught but her head protruded. He sat outside and watched as the carcass decayed around her and vultures and other carrion beasts picked apart the meat -- the bull's and hers...

   

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Ultima VII Part II: Serpent Isle

Back in Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness, one section of the game world was known as "The Lands of Danger and Despair". Shamino, a recurring character in the Ultima series, was a ruling lord here. The Lands of Danger and Despair vanished after the conclusion of Ultima I and became Serpent Isle, separated from Sosaria, as the world of Britannia was called before Ultima IV.

The original inhabitants of Serpent Isle, the Ophidians, had a culture where serpents played a central role. They eventually became polarized as the forces of Order and Chaos, respectively, and fought a great war that destroyed their culture and left their cities and temples in ruins. Order "won" the war, destroying the Chaos Serpent, but thereby upsetting the natural balance to the point where the entire universe is unraveling. (It turns out that the "Great Earth Serpent" that guarded Exodus's fortress in Ultima III was actually the Balance Serpent that Exodus had ripped from the void, triggering the war between Chaos and Order in the first place.)

Much later, Serpent Isle was re-settled by humans who had left Sosaria voluntarily, or who had been exiled. An alternate name for Serpent Isle is "New Sosaria", a reference to the original homeland of these settlers. Many of them referred to Lord British as "Beast British", and had a very low opinion of him. After he united the lands, and with the establishment of the eight virtues, those unhappy with his rule fled to Serpent Isle. Unlike Britannia, which has eight cities representing the eight virtues of the Avatar, Serpent Isle has three city-states, each with their own beliefs, which are warped versions of the Britannian principles of Truth, Love and Courage.

Launch Year: 1993
Ultima VII Part II: Serpent Isle Cover

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