The History of Ultima Online Travelogues
n this page you will find some background information about the history of the Ultima Online Travelogues web site. This web site has been existing for a very long time, being changed, enhanced, restructured and re-designed several times. Some of you may even remember the launch of this site as "Mad Biker's Ultima Online Travelogues" in February 1998.
In the beginning, my Ultima Online page was merely a collection of information for all who started with the game. Since there were few other pages about Ultima Online at that time, I decided to write everything down which helped me understanding the game. I also found that there was no page on the web which showed player screenshots or told real stories about Britannia.
Ultima Online Travelogues, April 1998
s I focused more and more on documenting my adventures (doing that was more fun than collecting information about game mechanics and displaying them in boring tables), I decided to make this focus more obvious for the visitor. That's how the idea of the Ultima Online Travelogues was born. The site was restructured and re-designed, and the stories were split up into several books so they would be arranged more clearly.
Ultima Online Travelogues, January 1999
oon web sites like UOVault and Stratics were offering far more information than I was able to update regularly, so I removed my tables and statistics pages one by one from my web site. I officially renamed my page to Ultima Online Travelogues, to show that I was focusing rather on telling stories and showing in-game pictures, than on providing information about game mechanics.
Ultima Online Travelogues, November 1999
y website had turned into a pure travelogues site. I exceeded the number of 800 screenshots and 200 stories, and my web space was limited. I even had removed the older stories to save web space. But due to numerous requests from lots of fans (of whom I had no idea they existed) I decided to put them back on, and I noticed that the old stories from the Early Days had been an essential part of the Ultima Online Travelogues.
Ultima Online Travelogues, October 2002
purpose of the Ultima Online Travelogues always had been to give new players and veterans
an incentive to explore and experience adventures in Britannia, and to keep the
readers up to date with the latest news about Ultima Online.
After I had quit playing UO in 2001, I still kept this site online for sentimental reasons. During the following years I noticed that a lot of people kept visiting this site, enjoying the stories and the old screenshots. The Ultima Online Travelogues was even referenced by Wikipedia.
Unfortunately, this site had been created using Microsoft Frontpage. In October 2007, I decided to finally get rid of the crappy HTML code generated by Frontpage, get rid of the frames and the poor structure, and migrated the site to efficient CSS code. I also gave the site a minor facelift.
Ultima Online Travelogues Revamp
t was a cold
and rainy December evening, when it finally hit me. I wanted to explore Britannia once again!
Having tried out several other MMORPGs in the meantime, I was longing for a game with
the depth of Ultima Online, the versatility and the community. I didn't care much about
UO's outdated graphics. I reactivated my old account and found that my characters were still there.
However, as I had given all virtual belongings away when I left in 2001, I had to
start from scratch. Due to a lot of new skills and changes in UO, my character templates needed
a complete revamp.
I documented my adventures once more, improved the website again optically, and made a lot of screenshots of my new adventures. I also created some detailed maps of all landmasses, as I found that good maps for printing were just not available. Again, I wanted to spread my knowledge in order to help other players. The site was now clearly separated into two sections: The Ultima Online Travelogues, containing stories and screenshots of my adventures. And the Ultima Online Adventurer's Guide, describing geography and places of interest for the adventurer.
Ultima Online Travelogues January 2008
nce again, it was time for change! Just a few weeks before the new expansion (Stygian Abyss) was released, I decided to give the Ultima Online Travelogues and Adventurer's Guide site a completely fresh look. The previous version of the site had been dispatched quickly, as I was happy enough to finally have gotten rid of the annoying frames code. Having a good CSS base, I now could concentrate more on the design and gave the site a more crisp and eye-friendly look. I removed some old pages too, so the site would now be focused only on the Travelogues and the Adventurer's Guide.
Ultima Online Travelogues Today