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Shroud of the Avatar, the new RPG from Ultima’s creator, is out now

Shroud of the Avatar crowdfunding

Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues is out and available on Steam. Why should you care? Because it’s made by Richard Garriott, aka Lord British, creator of the Ultima series.

Here’s what Jeremy made of Shroud of the Avatar.

Running for almost two decades until 1999, the Ultima series helped to define modern RPGsandopen-world games. Billed as Ultima’s spiritual successor, Shroud of the Avatar launched out of Steam Early Access yesterday. It is an RPG set in a persistent, online, fantasy world, blending many of Ultima’s staples with modern ideas, such as a player-driven crafting system and attached economy. The story has also been written in collaboration with Tracy Hickman, author of the Dragonlance novels.

It’s a project that has long appealed to classic RPG fans – Shroud of the Avatar has raised over $13 million on Kickstarter. Yet for all this, its reception in Early Access has been mixed at best, though recent user reviews are trending slightly higher (up to 62% from 53%). Garriott and his studio Portalarium are hoping to shake off those woes with a stability patch and some new content, including a map set in a meteor crater. We got to take a look at all that –see here for our impressions.

“With Shroud, I wanted to go back to my roots of game design,” says Garriott. “We wanted to create a rich story and also bring back a sandbox style of play… a style that’s immersive and interactive.”

You can pick up Shroud of the Avatar on Steam here, and until April 3, you can get a celebratory launch discount of 15% off the usual price of £30.99 ($39.99). For more information, you can check the new Shroud of the Avatar website.