The NES Port of Ultima III is the first Ultima port to a console, in this case Ultima III to the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). The port was released in 1989, six years after the original version,.
Although some sources claim that all work on the port was done by Origin themselves, the port's end credits show only Japanese people working on it.
At the time of the NES port's release, six years had elapsed since the release of the original. As such, the graphics were overhauled considerably. The new design for Ultima III was similar to that of many Japanese designed role-playing games, giving the characters an appearance stylistically similar to Japanese anime.
The sound and music to the game has been replaced as well, carrying over none of the tracks of the original. The NES opening theme is actually a digitized instrumental version of an image song, "Hitomi no Naifu" ("Knife of the Eye"), released in conjunction with the game. An album known as the Exodus "Ultima Mix" CD, has been produced with remixes of the soundtrack.
Given the need to adapt to an NES controller, the interface has been changed such as that most of the game's mechanical controls and player character statistics are accessible via pop-up windows, rather than through a keyboard parser. The window displaying the shifting moon-phases, however, remains unchanged. Movement is also portrayed differently in the port, with all party members represented as following a leader, instead of having the party displayed as a single sprite.
- The MSX port of Ultima III is identical to the NES version.
- Several Japanese Ultima Manga were created which were based on the NES ports of the series. As such, their storylines and characters diverge extensively from the Western game series.
- The singer for "Hitomi no Naifu," Noriko Hidaka, also appears as a character in the game, giving the player the Compass Heart item; the character's theme music also has its own image-song counterpart, "Haato no Jishaku" ("Magnet of the Heart"). Noriko's character was renamed to Sherry in the English version.
- The gender of the classes is fixed, meaning that a member of a certain class always has the same gender. (Ex: Mages are all male. Clerics are all female.)
- Many related groups of monsters have differing artwork each individual subtype, whereas the PC versions used a single graphic to cover a broad category of creatures (Ex: daemons-gargoyles-manes).
- The game added a short introduction sequence with the party appearing before Lord British. In this in-game event, Lord British is portrayed with a cross on his scepter, rather than an Ankh (see screenshot at the right).
- The NES port has a bug that can short-circuit the plot. The Four Cards aren't actually needed; it is enough to make it to Exodus himself. This can be done the quick way just by misusing the Moongate to the Isle of Fire until a pirate ship spawns in the small pond behind the snake (impossible in the computer versions), enabling access to the castle.
- There is a new endgame sequence where, after Exodus has been destroyed, the player must escape the rapidly-collapsing castle.
|Games||Ultima III ☥ Ultima IV ☥ Ultima V ☥ Ultima VI ☥ Savage Empire ☥ Ultima VII|