Ultima 7 Part 1: The Black Gate
"While other Ultimas did something similar, this was the first to make the graphics top notch and full screen, better immersing you in the experience. The story itself was equally inspired in the intro, an evil beast called The Guardian dares you to thwart his plans with many mini-quests and subplots as the game progressed. As you'd expect, this is also on the list of Techtite's choices for Top 50 Multimedia Classics. Deservedly so." - Techtite review
"More than anything, Ultima VII was the game that first made me realise I preferred worlds that moved around me rather than worlds that I simply moved through. The way that worlds come alive for me can be in the history-changing sweep of a grand strategy game or something as simple as the addition of day-night cycles. It can be an attempt to simulate an ecosystem or something as simple as enemies actually dropping the equipment I can see they were carrying seconds before they crumpled to the ground. It all adds to the sense of existing in a world, which adds to my enjoyment of creating narrative in that world. And Ultima VII was one of the places that form of creativity first sparked for me." - Rock, Paper, Shotgun retro review
Ultima 7 Part 1: The Black Gate downloads
The Black Gate was released in English, German, French and Spanish.
Ultima VII: The Black Gate is the first game in the mainline Ultima series to use dialogue trees.
Elements of Ultima VII are inspired by game creator Origin Systems' conflicts with competitor (and later owner) Electronic Arts. Origin Systems' corporate slogan was 'We Create Worlds', while the main antagonist of the story - The Guardian - is presented as a 'Destroyer of Worlds'. The three evil 'Generators' created by The Guardian in the game took the physical shapes of the contemporary Electronic Arts Logo: a cube, a sphere, and a tetrahedron. Elizabeth and Abraham, two apparently benevolent characters who later turn out to be murderers, have the initials "E" and "A".
The Black Gate was critically and commercially successful, being widely lauded as a high point in the series and as one of the best isometric RPGs ever created. In an interview with GameSpot, Richard Garriott stated that Ultima VII "was the most masterfully executed of the Ultima series."