The SSS Countdown
Edition One! - Mapper visits Blue Wolf Traders, Owned by
The first edition featured 'BLUE WOLF TRADERS' Owned by Lady
Alcestis you can find it 26o59'N 26o38'E in Malas. Way back
in October when I visited the shop they had 77 vendors.
Today I returned to count again, Today they have a
staggering 101! (If counted correctly, Which could be a
They have also changed the desks a
little bit by adding blue flowers, Check the screenshot
Edition Two! - Mapper visits
Zento Home & Gardens, Owned by Serafi
The 2nd edition featured 'ZENTO HOME & GARDENS' Owned by
Serafi, You can find the shop East of Zento,
On the map to the right.
I returned to the shop this morning to
find it looking the same and still stocked up! You may
wonder why I'm bothering to return to these shops? Shops
close down often, So this is like a little service, just to
let you know, THIS SHOP STILL LIVES!
Edition Three! - Mapper
visits Barian's Mall in Yewdale and Europa Auction.
The 3rd edition, The Halloween
Special. Featured 2 items, A shop of the week and an
establishment of the week. Here's what I picked.
I started with Barian's Mall in Yewdale. I choose this shop
because of the fact its been there so long, Unchanged, Even
when AoS arrived.
I managed to grab a chat with the
owner that day, here is what he had to say.
Q: First of all, How long has
Barian: I think we opened the Mall in early 2003, but I've had vendors (and shops) in
various locations ever since vendors came in.
Q: What did you first start to sell? How many vendors were on the plot?
Barian: First thing I ever sold was amour. I used to run a Smith repair service in the Minoc Smithy. The queues were huge. I met Nilrem & Lucy of Kenton back then
The Mall had 6 or 7 vendors when it started I think.
Q: Why did you choose against changing to a custom house plot when AoS came
Barian: We like the Large Marble shop, and changing would be far too much work, moving
all those vendors. Basically Terry Fyde won't let us !!
It's also become a tradition now I think. It's a good feeling when people come
back to UO after years away and find Barian's still there. They always say they
are pleasantly surprised
Q: Do you still enjoy running such an old shop?
Barian: Yes I do. Still meet people there too. It's a great feeling when someone you
don't know compliments you on the shop.
Q: What are your feelings on KR and UO right now in general, Still loving UO
as much as you did back at the start?
Barian: KR : I'll wait till it's finished before I touch it
UO : Yes I still love the game. I wish they would finish some of the systems
Virtues, plants, BoDs. Crafting has been nerfed for so long now.
Q: Finally, Has any customer asked for something real crazy? And if so, What
Barian: Many many times......craziest I can think of was for 2000 full potion kegs
We turned that one down
I returned to the shop this morning,
It's looking lively still, And is even showing signs of
Christmas on the doors.
The Establishment of the Week in the 3rd edition went to
Europa Auction, I mentioned it had 175 auctions under its
belt. Well today it has 182. I managed to speak with owner
Leto, Here is what he had to say.
Q: How long has the auction been running? Its
nearing its 175th auction, But when did you first think up the idea?
Leto: 175 Auctions, that's about 3.5 years. It wasn't me who came up with the
idea though, wasn't even anybody currently on the team for that matter!
Europa Auction was founded by Alcestis who ran that first few auctions with
Bendalino. I joined sometime around the 20th auction and was the auctioneer from
around the 25th till the 75th auction. After the 75th auction Alcestis left and
I became the guildmaster. Amantala took over my job as auctioneer.
Q: I remember a while back your shop Two's
Company, Have you ever thought about another large shop like that?
Leto: I can't say the thought of re-opening never crossed my mind but I don't have any
solid plans right now. I do run a couple of vendors at Amantala's shop though.
The shop is called 'Three's a Crowd' and is located directly behind the 2nd
house from Umbra's West Entrance.
Q: What would you say is the oddest item you
have had auctioned off?
Leto: The oddest item? Now that's a hard question!
Amantala tried to auction me off a few times! How
odd that is depends on your opinion of me I guess ;-)
I don't think we auction a lot of odd items.
Sometimes we do get offered strange lots though. Like a set of 100 perched
parrots. Makes me wonder what the guys house looked and, more importantly,
sounded like before... We declined that lot though.
The most expensive item we ever auctioned was an
Obsidian Qualifier sash, for 100 million!
Q: What is the most enjoyable part about running an
auction, And what is the worst?
The best part has to be the people. A lot of
different people attend the auctions, from roleplayers to PvPers to merchants.
It's great to be able to play with so many different people. Sometimes we have
to force them but most of the time they get along just fine :-)
The worst part is the people as well... Though, I
must say it's been a while since we've had any serious grievers. There's always
the small incidents but usually a short run (remove thyself!) shows them the
error of their ways ;-)
I visited the auction house today and
its looking again very similar.
Edition Four! - Mapper visits
The Swaggers Inn and Vesper Shop Bods, Yika Shop and Vesper
The Establishment is up first this time, I visited The
Swaggers Inn in Vesper, Owned by Anna-Maria. Here is what
she had to say in our interview.
Of course the first one is obvious. When was the
tavern first started? Same location as it is now?
Anna-Maria: Well VTC first started running the
Marsh Hall NPC inn in Vesper, for a few months then
Garret and Yiveth came into ownership of the Swaggers
Inn, in exactly the same place as it stands now (but a
bit smaller!). And I think it opened in something like
September 2003 (a month or two before my time)
Mapper: I was told the house has had many
different designs, Is this something that happens often?
Or are you quite happy with its look now?
Anna-Maria: It's had its fair share of
reworkings over the years, mostly before I was about.
I'm a bit lazier so I've only changed it maybe 3 times.
Personally I'm happy with the look as it is now, but I'm
not active now and I just don't have the energy to go
through the sheer hell of redecorating.
I'm not exaggerating that it takes several solid days'
work to redecorate the Swaggers (including finding all
the bloody stuff again), and several true rares (like
sheet music) have been lost over the years in the depths
of the Swaggers packing crate.
Mapper: What day and time is the tavern open?
And what day would you say is most busiest?
Anna-Maria: Well the tavern has always been
open all day and all night, it just depends on whether
any of the bar staff are there.
There have been times when VTC has been at its prime
that it literally was open all day and night, with
several of us roleplaying from morning till 4am - which
is unfortunately not the most productive use of a day!
There's never really been a busiest day, except for a
typical lull on Fridays - but the time when it is most
active is 8pm onwards generally.
Mapper: You said you weren't very active now,
But have you seen Kingdom Reborn? What do you think of
Anna-Maria: Oh, I think a lot of the art in
Kingdom Reborn is unimpressive, but I am one of the few
people who seem to be very much for it. From the few
minutes I have wandered around in it with KR, Britannia
feels like a very different place, and that is always a
good thing. The forests feel more woody, the spells look
more sparkly, and the characters move more swaggery.
I will certainly come back to try out Kingdom Reborn,
but I do think that a lot of the art is clunky and
unattractive - it just looks lazily done to me!
2d items, KR interface and landscape.. Id
be happy :-)
I revisited the Inn this afternoon, I
just cant get over how lovely the decorations are!
I visited the 3 shops at Vesper North West Bridge also, I'm
pleased to let you know, All 3 are still operating.
Edition Five! - Mapper visits
I visited Shop AE in the fifth edition. This shop used to be
located in Malas and I had thought it had closed down until
I found it again! This time on my door step in Zento! You
can find it in the North East corner of Zento.
The shop is still standing today and
it still packed to the rim with vendors and stock.
Edition Six! - Mapper visits
The Trinsic Rose Tavern, Owned by Gwen Irima
In week six I visited an old favorite, The Trinsic Rose
Tavern, When I found it I learnt they had moved to a bigger
building. Here is an interview with owner Gwen Irima.
How long has the tavern been around?
Gwen: Heading for the 3rd
anniversary this coming January, So that would be
*counts* January 2005.
Mapper: Have you always been
the owner ? Was a lady named VanQa when I last went.
Gwen: I am the player of VanQa
but also the player of the new Owner Gwen Irima :P and
yes I have always been the owner :)
Mapper: What time is it open?
Every night after 8pm If I remember, But are there any
nights when its really busy?
Gwen: Its open on Monday and
Friday from 7 to 9-10-11 pm depending on how busy it is.
The busy nights change all the time. When there is a lot
to do in the world it is quiet, but there is always a
regular amount of guests between 4 to 10 people.
Mapper: The taverns moved now
to a tree house design and different location, What made
Gwen: The reason was mostly
space. It's the tavern but also the building I "live"
in. Also the more space allowed me to put two rooms for
rent back in for people who'd like to stay in the tavern
for a few days or longer. A nice side effect of the
bigger tavern area is also that I can set it up for
special occasions, like a birthday party or a fancy
dinner for many people.
Mapper: Onto the game itself
now, Have you tried Kingdom Reborn? Do you like it?
Gwen: Hehehe Trick Question? Do
I get cookies if I answer it correctly ?
I try Kingdom Reborn on a regular basis because if they
are going to force us to play it I have to know how to
play it before that time comes. With making the Trinsic
Rose and the other buildings in the Elven Quarter I have
logged in into both clients to make sure it all looked
good in both Clients. I prefer the 2d version and I
think it is a big shame they are eventually going to
shut that down. Kingdom Reborn looks pretty... but if I
were a new customer and saw the game in the shop for the
first time I would not have bought it.
Mapper: Final question, Do you
think roleplay is as popular as it used to be? Have the
number of roleplayers stayed constant?
Gwen: To me personally
roleplaying is what makes Ultima Online so much fun (I
started UO in 2000 and started roleplaying about a year
later). The day there is no more roleplay to be had with
other players is probably the day I'll stop playing
myself also. The numbers of roleplayers appear to me to
have dwindled (became less) a lot lately, more then in
the past. But the numbers go up and down all the time so
i am not worried yet. There are still enough folks
around to roleplay with and perhaps once KR has
officially started new ones will come..
You can still find the tavern near
Trinsic Moongate, I visited it this afternoon also! Pff I'm
tired of buzzing around. Here's a photo.
Edition Seven! - Mapper
visits The RAA Guild Shop, Owned by Lord Ulysses
The 7th Edition brought me to a good old shop of Europa, RAA
Guild Shop. Everyone MUST have furniture crafted by Lord
Check the map below for directions.
I visited the shop this afternoon, Its
looking very christmasy!
Edition Eight! - Mapper
visits CD Vendor Mall, Owned by 'Someone Special' < ooo!
This is a fairly recent visit so no need to go back! Right?
Well, This article is fairly long now. You'll find CD
Vendors 4-5 houses from Umbra West Bridge, In the map to the
right, its the big white 'en'!
Okay okay calm down! You want to know
if its worth checking the shop out?
The shop is still active and what's
that?! They are even gating! Get right over to the Britain
Bank and get the shop out!
Edition Nine! - Mapper visits
The King's Deer and Stonekeep
The King's Deer! Located in Stonekeep, This was the final
tavern visited this year. It was completely different from
others in the fact it was small and cozy, Forcing you to
chat to someone! I managed to speak with the owner Carolyn,
Here is what she had to say!
So you run the
King's Deer tavern, Which is in Stonekeep, I've always known
there to be a tavern there but I remember it as a Villa.
When was this changed? Were you always the owner?
The King's Deer
has seen many changes but hasn't been a villa since at least
2005. Over the last couple of years it's seen alternative
uses such as a meeting hall but is now back to being a
tavern, with its most recent design taking place earlier
Carolyn only took
over the reigns of The King's Deer upon its recent
redevelopment but the property is still and always will be
Guardsmen Militia owned. In character the management always
lease the property from Stonekeep.
I visited the
King's Deer this morning, I've been around a few taverns,
Its certainly a small and cosy tavern, Is this a good thing?
Or would you have liked it to be a little larger?
It needs to be
small and cozy for it to work I think. Although it would be
nice to have a little more space to work with,
we can always expand out into the road if necessary for
The cozy feel
works in its favour and whilst the militia would prefer it
to be seedier and dirtier it works well enough in its
say the tavern is the central location of Stonekeep in
the evenings? Or is there another building most people
of the tavern is pretty central to Stonekeep. Everyone's
always stood around the outside and loitered nearby when
on duty for as long as Stonekeep's been in existence,
when off-duty the tavern is definitely where most
activity will take place.
question, A little different, Kingdom Reborn, Do you
play it? What do you think of it?
but that's more down to being stuck in my ways. I prefer
the interface of 2d it's simplistic and easy to use and
I'm not so willing to learn how to play UO all over
again. KR's okay. To me the graphics aren't nearly as
terrible as some people make out and I quite like the
look of it but not enough to try and play UO through it.
all, I thank you verrrrry much! :-P
I also managed to visit Stonekeep this
year, I sadly didn't get to catch the planned interview. So
it certainly needs a revisit next year!
I would like to thank all the
interviewee's for agreeing their time to my sometimes badly
made up questions! Id also like to thank you all for reading
this new feature to Europa Stratics.
Have a fantastic Christmas and