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The Greatest Quest/Artifact to ever exist in MMORPGs

AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
This is the story of the greatest artifact/World Wide Quest in MMORPG history, that I mentioned in another thread.
I had so much information that I'd gathered over a period of around 3 years, in researching this, that I'm going to try to limit this just to keep it "short."
But I'll try to hit all the important points.
To start, you need a little background.
UO came from the Ultima SP games that made Richard Garriott's name.
In the plot that spanned all of those games, was the story of Mondain the evil wizard, his lover and apprentice Minax, how Mondain took control of the world of Sosaria, and how "The Stranger" (the SP game player character) came from Earth, met Lord British (who also had come from Earth), and went on to defeat Mondain and free the world of his evil.
The start up movie for UO held an important clue. It's short.
Notice at the end as the camera pans out from the dying Mondain, the final "Shard" (yes, this is where that term came from, kudos to Raph Koster)
is darker than the rest of the Shards at close up inspection. It's a transparent black.
This was a critical clue to this mystery.
What was suspected by fans of the Ultima series, once UO was released, was that when the Gem of Immortality shattered into Shards, each shard held a copy of the world. And some of these worlds might still be held by the power of Evil.
This became known over the years of releases of new additional lands in UO.
Next Post, I'll start telling the story. This is still going to be long, try as I may to keep it "short."  

CONTINUED...

Once upon a time....

Cosmoguardtzervo

Comments

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    My story of this quest started well after the release of UO, even though I started playing on the first day.
    It started during a GM Event. The Invasion of Trinsic. There had been many GM Events before this, and this was several(?) years after UO's release.
    Trinsic was one of the largest cities, and was invaded by Minax (Mondain's lover/apprentice). Her forces were led by a powerful Liche named Juo'Nar.
    Juo'Nar was well know in UO's Events. He was the human leader of the Paladin's Guild in Trinsic.
    But he was found to be stealing funds for his own purposes, and eventually killed in the manhunt. He later returned as a Powerful Liche with unusual powers.
    It was said that Minax turned him into this Liche form.
    After several weeks of Trinsic being held by Juo'Nar's undead forces, a battle was planned to free Trinsic and defeat Juo'Nar. This event was huge for the day.
    I gathered with my Guildmates at our Tower before the events. One of my Mates, who always seemed to know the details of the stuff going on, said that this was going to be wild. I asked how he knew, and he told me that everyone who knew was going to be there to loot the "Black Necklace" off of Juo'Nar.
    I didn't know a thing about any special artifact, and he didn't know much. Just that Juo'Nar carried it, and it was his source of Liche Power.
    I asked what it looked like, but he said no one knew.
    I asked how anyone even knew about it, and he didn't answer.
    I became suspicious that maybe he was a GM himself, but I never knew if he was.
    The battle went off, it was extremely crouded, but Trinsic was a large city.
    Juo'Nar was defeated, and looted.
    I ran into this Guild Mate in the aftermath, where many players were telling their stories of their experiences.
    I asked him if anyone got the Black Necklace, and he told me that "the authorities took it." This meant that the GM played leaders of Lord British's court took it.
    It was later stated that these leaders of British's court had hid the Necklace somewhere in Trinsic. But no one ever found it. It was said that it was inside the thick stone walls that surrounded and divided the city.
    This started my quest to discover what this "Black Necklace" was. And about 3 years of research into UO's Lore, Event notices and writeups, and anything I could find, including past posts by players on the forums because GM played characters sometimes talked to regular players.
    Next up, my discoveries. 

    CONTINUED...
    Cosmoguardtzervo

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    I'll start to show you the things I found, that I can remember, and I consider the highlights of this mystery.
    1- The Liche Twins. This was the first event in UO.
    The story was that these evil twins had killed their powerful Alchemist mother to take her power for themselves.
    They had used her eyes to fashion identical Necklaces, her eyes had turned black in the ritual, and were the "center stones" of their necklaces.
    They used these Necklaces to turn themselves into powerful Liches.
    The clues:
    - Black center stones. I began to understand what the "Black Necklace" looked like.
    - Lichedom.
    - Alchemy.
    --------------------------------------------
    2- The assasination of a GM character, and the funeral.
    - This was another very early Event(s).
    If I remember right, there was some item that was stolen from his house after the assasination.
    - The "Followers of Armagageddon" first appear. One of them appeared at the funeral and made a brief statement/speach that they were responsible, and this was just the beginning. They were going to destroy the world so they could rebuild it. 
    This was from the Ultima Lore. In Sosaria's ancient past, the entire world was destroyed so that it could be rebuilt under a new and evil power.
    The Wisps had something to do with this, although I figured they simply knew all the answers, as that's what they did from their other planar home. All about knowledge.
    --------------------------------------------
    3- Juo'Nar, when he was still human, at the Shrine of Spirituality.
    This was a bit strange.
    There was a Caravan, supposedly secretly moving something, led by Dali, the wife Finth Desryn who was the newly appointed Captain of the Trinsic Guard (related to the story if the assasination).
    The caravan was attacked and Dali was killed.
    At the same time, Juo'Nar (still as a human) attacked a small group of monks who were performing some kind of mysterious ritual at the Shrine of Spirituality. He killed them and took something.
    Juo'Nar then stopped a player near by, and told him that he now had what he needed, and he couldn't be stopped now.
    That player posted this in the forums.
    - This is strange because of the caravan attack, was it a ruse by the good guys?
    It was also strange in that it contradicted the story that Minax had turned Juo'Nar into a Liche, assuming that that was the power of the Black Necklace, and that that was what Juo'Nar stole from the monks he killed.
    ----------------------------------------------
    4- The raid on Lord British's castle.
    This had no Event attached to it, that I know of. It was a story, like some others, that didn't seem to fit anywhere in the plot line.
    Some warriors made a surprise raid on LB's, but left without whatever it was they were after (I think).
    They were described as each wearing a Gold Necklace with a pure Black Center Stone.
    At last, I was sure that I knew what the "Black Necklace" looked like.
    This story got lost as there didn't seem to be anything connected to it, and it took me some time doing searches to find it. But I was excited, naturally.
    -------------------------------------------
    CONTINUED...
    Cosmoguardtzervo

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    Blackrock appears.
    1- "Mondain's Relics" were several of his body parts that were held as Relics by Lord British, secreted away and rarely seen.
    They were supposed to be shown in an exibit in Britain, Lord British's capital city.
    In a typical UO sort of thing, lol, a player had logged out in the building where a GM was setting "Mondain's Relics" out for display. But before the GM could lock them down, this player logged in and stole them. He ran, and a manhunt was set off, with players asked to help find him.
    The Gms tracked him down and recovered the Relics.
    I was there are participated in the search, to no affect.
    UO was so much fun!
    ------------------------------------
    2- "Mondain's Relics" were stolen to set up an Event. The search was on by any and all players. They were found and recovered, and I think this was the first time Black Rock was introduced, as some lucky players got some in loot.
    There were more Events that featured Black Rock.
    This was some sort of Power Unfused rock, and I suspect that it was a power source of some kind. Used in creating the Liche Twins' nacklaces from their mother's eyes, and the Black Necklace. But certainly there was more to it. I never found that answer.
    --------------------------------------
    3- An event where at the end, the defeat of the evil forces, there was an explosion that created and scattered around on the floor about 20 Black Gemstones.
    I was there on my shard's events, and realized what happened, and went around and gathered most of them as other players were in confusion.
    Lucky me!
    But I was never a selfish person. There was a known Guild's leader there that had been spending all her time Resurrecting dead Players so they could continue their fight. I gave her 3 of the Black Gemstones as thanked her, even though I didn't need her services.
    I wanted the rest to experimant on.
    I asked a maxed out jewelry maker to try to make a Necklace using one. I wanted to see what happened. The first attempt failed and ruined the Black Gemstone, but the second attempt succeeded. It didn't have any ususual powers, and the description said it was a diamond, and it wasn't black. I thanked him and gave him the Necklace as a reward.
    I posted this on a forum, and a GM heard about it, and made a post stating that he thought that was "quite curious."
    I experimentd with them in a variety of ways, losing a few as the experiemnt was risky and they dissapeared like any other object would.I also have 3 to a fellow player who was into this stuff like I was, so he could run experiments too.
    I held onto the final 6 or so that I had left until years later when I left UO for good.
    They had lost their value by that time, as new Events introduced many more of these for players to gather in the new "rare items that aren't really rare" systems introduced.
    -----------------------------------
    CONTINUED...
    Cosmoguardtzervo

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    edited March 21
    Minax!
    In another Event where Minax had her forces attack and take over Trinsic, she was seen several times. She was happily boasting about her "victory."
    The last time, I was there. And her Paper Doll showed that she was wearing a Gold Necklace with a Black Center Gemstone.
    I clicked on it for the description, and saw it's Official Name.
    "Mondain's Embrace", and I knew it for what it was. The "Black Necklace" was "Mondain's Embrace"!
    Minax had recovered it from inside the Walls of Trinsic, where it had been placed by "The Officials" after Juo"Nar the Liche's defeat some RL years before.(See earlier posts)
    --------------------------------

    Edit to add:
    Raph Koster informs me the GM responsible for all of this was Todd Bailey, known as GM Toad at UO. 
    Todd has been around for a long time. Besides UO, he's worked on games like Wing Commander, SWG, Tabula Rasa, and a few others. 

    What he did here, with this stuff, I think was amazing. 
    It was deep and mysterious, and well hidden in Lore, plot, and Events. 
    And one hell of a lot of fun to dig into. 
    -------------------------------

    Next post: What happened to "Mondain's Embrace/ The Black Necklace"
    CONTINUED...
    Post edited by Amaranthar on
    Cosmoguardtzervo

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    edited March 20
    What happened to "Mondain's Embrace/ The Black Necklace"?
    Over the many years, UO was changed by the loss of GMs and original people.
    There was ONE GM who ran the Polt Line.
    And he kept it secret, even from other GMs.
    But over those years, he had a constant problem. Most of the time, as new releases were made, and under time constraints, and with newer GMs who had no real appreciation for the Plot Line, some og his important stuff was left out.
    He got tired of it, and eventually left EA/UO.
    Also, Richard Garriott had left.
    The newer GMs had nothing left. They didn't know the secrets.
    I didn't know much about this GM, only that this is what happened. I can't say that this is 100% accurate, but I do know that he left UO.
    But I hoped that the story would somehow continue.
    I joined the UO Stratixs staff as a reporter. Then I made a much more detailed article about what all I had discovered and connected.
    The I sent it in as a news story, and explained that it may not longer be valid to my higher ups.
    They ran with it.
    There were not many replies, but the viewing hits were way up there. Most didn't know what to think, I guess.
    The few comments ranged from "Whoe!" to "That's a bunch of crap." lol
    But the GMs of the time were cool about it.
    They didn't have a clue where to take it, so they decided to put it to rest forever more.
    In my article, I related a connection to the current Events' GM played Character. I don't remember what that was.
    That Character was found dead under mysterious circumstances in-game, within a month. It was also connected superficially to the next Events.
    Later, a new Event was introduced, where Lord British was dying of Poison.
    A GM played Character was introduced.
    His name was Odric.
    The similarty to "Odd Richard" was very curious.
    Later still, after LB had been curred by Odric (Alchemy), a new Event was played out.
    In this one, Odric somehow used a mind control on a GM Character and forced him to turn over this Necklace, which Minax had given him just for this Event.
    Odric jumped into a boat and sailed away, he and "Mondain's Embrace" never to be seen or heard from again (that I know of, anyways).
    And that, in my opinion, was the greatest mystery/long running Quest/Artifact item to have ever existed in MMORPGs.
    Ever.

    Post edited by Amaranthar on
    UngoodkitaradCosmoguardtzervo

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    I made a correction above. 
    The official name of the Necklace was "Mondain's Embrace." (I had said "revenge" instead, but edited it.) 

    Remember in the movie (above in the first post) at the end, as the dying Mondain was reaching out for the black Shard, that must have been it, the black jewel used in the Necklace. 

    I'm not surprised that there are no comments. Most gamers just aren't interested unless they get something out of it. That's fine by me. Leaves this sort of thing, which I find endlessly entertaining, left to those gamers like me. 
    I love a good mystery, and a good secret too. B)

    Once upon a time....

  • lahnmirlahnmir Member LegendaryPosts: 3,753
    I had to search for Mankriks wife once. Turns out she was dead.

    /Cheers,
    Lahnmir
    'the only way he could nail it any better is if he used a cross.'

    Kyleran on yours sincerely 


    'But there are many. You can play them entirely solo, and even offline. Also, you are wrong by default.'

    Ikcin in response to yours sincerely debating whether or not single-player offline MMOs exist...



    'This does not apply just to ED but SC or any other game. What they will get is Rebirth/X4, likely prettier but equally underwhelming and pointless. 

    It is incredibly difficult to design some meaningfull leg content that would fit a space ship game - simply because it is not a leg game.

    It is just huge resource waste....'

    Gdemami absolutely not being an armchair developer

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    lahnmir said:
    I had to search for Mankriks wife once. Turns out she was dead.

    /Cheers,
    Lahnmir
    I had to look that up, but I get the reference. 
    thanksabunch...

    Once upon a time....

  • lahnmirlahnmir Member LegendaryPosts: 3,753
    lahnmir said:
    I had to search for Mankriks wife once. Turns out she was dead.

    /Cheers,
    Lahnmir
    I had to look that up, but I get the reference. 
    thanksabunch...
    Please don't misunderstand me, I love the whole chain you described in the posts above, the one I posted is to show the stark contrast with "current day" mmorpgs. It so happens that Mankriks Wife is a somewhat famous WoW quest. I prefer quests and content like you described any day of the week.

    /Cheers,
    Lahnmir
    Amaranthar
    'the only way he could nail it any better is if he used a cross.'

    Kyleran on yours sincerely 


    'But there are many. You can play them entirely solo, and even offline. Also, you are wrong by default.'

    Ikcin in response to yours sincerely debating whether or not single-player offline MMOs exist...



    'This does not apply just to ED but SC or any other game. What they will get is Rebirth/X4, likely prettier but equally underwhelming and pointless. 

    It is incredibly difficult to design some meaningfull leg content that would fit a space ship game - simply because it is not a leg game.

    It is just huge resource waste....'

    Gdemami absolutely not being an armchair developer

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    lahnmir said:
    lahnmir said:
    I had to search for Mankriks wife once. Turns out she was dead.

    /Cheers,
    Lahnmir
    I had to look that up, but I get the reference. 
    thanksabunch...
    Please don't misunderstand me, I love the whole chain you described in the posts above, the one I posted is to show the stark contrast with "current day" mmorpgs. It so happens that Mankriks Wife is a somewhat famous WoW quest. I prefer quests and content like you described any day of the week.

    /Cheers,
    Lahnmir
    I admit, I did take it the wrong way. "Beaten corpse" sounded a lot like "beating a dead horse." 
    I'm glad you corrected me. 

    Once upon a time....

  • learis1learis1 Member UncommonPosts: 161
    Sulfaras was pretty amazing to see back in the day of Vanilla WoW. I don't know much lore behind it, but It was so incredibly time consuming to get that I literally saw 1 single person on the entire server who had it. And this was back in the day when a Legendary item actually stood out, not like now when everything looks legendary.

    It was in an Alterac Valley battleground and the guy was running around with it on the enemy faction. Everyone was literally swarming him just so they could fight the guy who had Sulfaras. I was lucky enough to be one of the people who got one-shotted by him. Proudest day of my life.
    AmarantharCosmoguard

    Mend and Defend

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    learis1 said:
    Sulfaras was pretty amazing to see back in the day of Vanilla WoW. I don't know much lore behind it, but It was so incredibly time consuming to get that I literally saw 1 single person on the entire server who had it. And this was back in the day when a Legendary item actually stood out, not like now when everything looks legendary.

    It was in an Alterac Valley battleground and the guy was running around with it on the enemy faction. Everyone was literally swarming him just so they could fight the guy who had Sulfaras. I was lucky enough to be one of the people who got one-shotted by him. Proudest day of my life.
    What a good attitude! 
    I'm tired of selfishness and love to see people who have such a Spirit. 
    My dream game would have unique items in , Artifacts like that, in various forms. With and without Power. 
    I don't care if I never owned one myself. It adds so much to a game's world of adventure, intrigue, and explorational game play. 

    UO had the "Rare Items". These were unique art items that were supposed to be locked down, but a bug allowed them to be "Stolen" (using the skill) from their place in the world. Just the first time, after that the "lock down" worked. So they were one of a kind and unique. 
    A few players figured that out, and gathered those unique items. 
    And eventually, in a marvelous spirit of cooperation, one player decided to organize these other players to form a Museum, The Museum of Memories, in a large mansion the player owned, and set these things out for public viewing. 
    Having players build things like that in a game, I mean, how great is that? 
    It's got a specialness that is rarely seen. 

    Ancient_Exile

    Once upon a time....

  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    edited March 21
    I edited and added in the above the following, to give credit where it's due.

    Raph Koster informs me the GM responsible for all of this was Todd Bailey, known as GM Toad at UO. 

    I looked him up and found that Todd has been around for a long time. Besides UO, he's worked on games like Wing Commander, SWG, Tabula Rasa, and a few others. 

    What he did here, with this stuff, I think was amazing. 
    It was deep and mysterious, and well hidden in Lore, plot, and Events. 
    And one hell of a lot of fun to dig into. 
    Post edited by Amaranthar on

    Once upon a time....

  • AmatheAmathe Member LegendaryPosts: 7,465
    The post itself is an epic quest. Impressive. You should drop the mike after that.

    EQ1, EQ2, SWG, SWTOR, GW, GW2 CoH, CoV, FFXI, WoW, CO, War,TSW and a slew of free trials and beta tests

  • Jean-Luc_PicardJean-Luc_Picard Member LegendaryPosts: 8,375
    Awesome story!

    Another good example of epic old schools quests would be Aerfalle in Asheron's Call. That one took months before all players working together finally figured it out.
    "The ability to speak doesn't make you intelligent" - Qui-gon Jinn in Star Wars.
    After many years of reading Internet forums, there's no doubt that neither does the ability to write.
    CPU: Intel Core I7 9700k (4.90ghz) - GPU: ASUS Dual GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER EVO 8GB DDR6 - RAM: 32GB Kingston HyperX Predator DDR4 3000 - Motherboard: Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra - PSU: Antec TruePower New 750W - Storage: Kingston KC1000 NVMe 960gb SSD and 2x1TB WD Velociraptor HDDs (Raid 0) - Main display: Samsung U32J590 32" 4K monitor - Second display: Philips 273v 27" monitor - VR: Pimax 8K headset - Sound: Sony STR-DH550 AV Receiver HDMI linked with the GPU and the TV, with Jamo S 426 HS 3 5.0 speakers and Pioneer S-21W subwoofer - OS: Windows 10 Pro 64 bits.


  • AmarantharAmaranthar Member EpicPosts: 4,242
    Awesome story!

    Another good example of epic old schools quests would be Aerfalle in Asheron's Call. That one took months before all players working together finally figured it out.
    I vaguely remember reading about that, even though I didn't play AC. 

    Once upon a time....

  • Ancient_ExileAncient_Exile Member RarePosts: 1,303
    They don't make MMORPGs like they used to, that's for sure.
    Amathe
    "If everything was easy, nothing would be hard."


    "Show me on the doll where PVP touched you."


    (Note:  If I type something in a thread that does not exactly pertain to the stated subject of the thread in every, way, shape, and form, please feel free to send me a response in a Private Message.)

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