Ten Ton Hammer managed to track down Ultima Online producer Cal Crowner for a Q&A about the game's newly launched Stygian Abyss expansion pack.
Ten Ton Hammer: Ultima Online has always been kind of PvP oriented and initially that's where a lot of fans came from was this PvP community. Are you doing anything to bring that back with Stygian Abyss? I know it's kind of been phased out as some of the earlier expansions moved more towards PvE gameplay...
Cal Crowner: I think it's become my responsibility to learn from all the guys that came before me and make sure we do things right. I think we have a good balance. What we tried to do was inside the systems, make it possible for PvPers to play and have fun.
We have a PvP specialist on the team, but what we don't want to do is make any really fast decisions. Because then that tends to alienate players and that's not what we want to do. What we want to do is incorporate systems. For example, we added a couple of special moves for (Throw) into the game. This makes PvP more viable. As we go on and develop new content for both the live game and then this new expansion area we'll continue to offer things that PvPers are attracted to.