Europa - Super Stratics Saturday!

Super Stratics Saturday! - 10th Edition

  - Welcome

Welcome to the 10th Super Stratics Sunday! - This week is a pure recap!

Firstly however, tomorrow is Christmas Eve! So have a wonderful Christmas and New Year. Ive choosen to have this be the last edition this year. Join us next year for a new SSS! 6th January 2008!




  - Mapper's Christmas Countdown



  - The SSS Countdown

Edition One! - Mapper visits Blue Wolf Traders, Owned by Lady Alcestis.

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 joke)

They have also changed the desks a little bit by adding blue flowers, Check the screenshot below.

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's Mall been open?

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 out?

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 i.e. 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 was that?

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?

Leto: 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 Shop

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.

Mapper: 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 it?

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!

Mapper: 2d items, KR interface and landscape.. Id be happy :-)

Anna-Maria: Agreed

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 Shop AE

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.

Mapper: 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 you change?

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 Ulysses? Right?

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!

Mapper: 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?

Carolyn: 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 this year.

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.

Mapper: 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?

Carolyn: 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 larger events.

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 current state.

Mapper: Would you say the tavern is the central location of Stonekeep in the evenings? Or is there another building most people locate?

Carolyn: The exterior 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.

Mapper: Last question, A little different, Kingdom Reborn, Do you play it? What do you think of it?

Carolyn: I don't 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.

Mapper: And that's 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 New Year!