|Danger awaits on the other side...|
My party was sufficiently advanced enough to dispatch the miscreants without any trouble at all (most of them went down to one hit to Ivan and Olivia's bows), so I pressed onward to the castle and made my way in. Carefully I passed over the fire-edged drawbridge to the castle, hurried through Exodus' front lawn (thankfully I avoided getting attacked by the grass), and was greeted by two demons and what looked to be a balron. None attacked me, the demons statuesque sentinels that told me none left the castle, and the balron acting as a steward of some sort, telling me to choose my path well. The entry hall was full of lava, the path winding around it leading to a force field with a guard on the other side. So began my first fight in the castle!
|I'm sorry... it seems death is the only escape.|
Back to the journey! The guard was keeping watch over the castle's prison, which was holding a few monsters and a few other poor adventurers who all advised me to get out of there as fast as I could - I felt very badly about slaying a party of clerics who wouldn't let me pass, all they wanted was for me to save them. But I couldn't get by them, and so I had no choice but to press an attack to venture further into the prisons... and ultimately it was a fruitless effort anyway, as it got me no close to Exodus itself. Sigh... more unvirtuous acts to work off next game.
|Here There Be Dragons|
The foes behind me vanquished, I waded through the fire and the flames that lay just before Exodus, only to be attacked by the very floor I was standing on! I love this bit, too, the fact that you're facing enemies that you can't see, one last test of how well you've learned how enemies act during battle so you can use that pathing to your advantage and take minimal damage. It's not particularly difficult if you know the trick (I just moved all my party right to the bottom edge of the combat field, then attacked up every round), but I can see it causing problems if you don't have a strategy going in.
|Just a little further...|
With Exodus struck down, that ends the reign of the Triad of Evil and the Ages of Darkness - and it was a rip-roaring good time! I'm eager for Ultima IV, but I think I'm actually going to miss Ultima III, I'd love to see what a different party would feel like. As always, I'll have one more post following this one with my closing thoughts on the game in the coming days - then it'll be time to rid myself of all the questionable deeds I've done in the past three games!