Ultima VIII: Pagan

History of Pagan

(False history)

Long ago, before the time in which the Titans came to the world, there were people who were vile and unclean. These people called themselves Zealans and they worshipped their own emotions and therefore tried to make themselves as gods. Then came a man named Kalen who saw that such behaviour was false and an affront to nature. Kalen preached to the people that they should not set themselves above the natural forces who are eternal and more powerful than man.

In time, people began to see the wisdom in Kalen's words and followed his teachings. These people called themselves Pagans and they turned aside from the worship of emotions. In time, those who followed the old worship of emotions, those who were called Zealans began to hate the Pagans. For the Pagans, the practitioners of the one true church had begun to grow strong in their numbers. The Zealans feared that the Pagans would overwhelm them. Then did the Zealans persecute the Pagans.

Though persecuted, the Pagans continued to spread the word of the power of the natural forces, and the divinity therein. Because of the danger of being killed or enslaved by Zealans, the Pagans were driven out of the cities and into the wilderness. Kalen then took his followers up to the peak of the great mountain, Morgaelin. There they built a great altar where they could worship the forces of nature in peace. The construction of the altar took a very long time, for it was built from a sacred black stone that is very rare.

Not long after the altar was built, the Zealans attacked the Pagans so that the true religion would be driven out of the world. However, the natural divinities saw that that their children were being assailed and were saddened. In the ensuing battle, the Zealan soldiers drove the Pagans before them and seemed to the peaceful to be unstoppable. But in one great act of blasphemy, the Zealans destroyed the Holy Altar which the Pagans had built. In one great blast of foul magic, the altar was shattered. Its many pieces were scattered about the mountain top.

Seeing such blasphemy, the natural divinities came down from the heavens and destroyed the Zealan army. After the battle, the natural divinities saw that what had once been a place of holy worship had now been defiled by Zealan hatred. Therefore, the natural divinities destroyed the top of the mountain, and exposed a seething volcano. When the natural divinities saw that Kalen had been killed and that the Pagans had no leader, they decided to liven up the world. The divinities then manifested themselves as the Titans of the elements and poured out their wrath upon the Zealans. When the Pagans lost their way and did not give proper thanks and worship to the Titans, they too received the Titans' wrath.

   

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Ultima VIII: Pagan

Following the defeat of the charismatic religious leader Batlin on Serpent Isle, the Guardian banishes the Avatar to a world that he has already conquered: Pagan. Ultima VIII has a much darker tone and a very different premise, in comparison to most of the Ultima games. The world of Pagan is entirely different from that of Britannia: the Virtues are not part of Pagan's culture, and the magic systems and monsters are entirely different.

The world of Pagan is in eternal twilight as the result of an ancient battle between the Elemental Titans and the evil "Destroyer", which resulted in the victory of the Titans. However, the people of Pagan had to pay a high price: the Titans had to henceforth be worshiped as gods. The Titans bestow powers on their most ardent followers, but they are otherwise cruel and unloving rulers, and their followers terrorize the general population.

Launch Year: 1994
Ultima VIII: Pagan Cover

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