View Full Version : Ultima Runes

July 30th, 2001, 02:39 PM
Hi all.

I work with a set of runes that's probably different from what most people are using, but was wondering if anyone knew anything about it. Heh heh. The set comes from an old video game called Ultima Underworld. (If you know of the Ultima video games, that's possibly enough reference, but I'm not sure.)

It's entirely possible that the rune set is just completely made up by the game developers. And then again, maybe they researched it from some arcane source. I wish I knew. Do any of you know about where they got them from?

Bright Blessings,
Silver Phoenix

July 30th, 2001, 04:13 PM
Anyway you can post a picture of the symbols, or a website with them?

PS If these came from a game, odds are they are at least mostly 'made up'... but, at some point, isn't everything?

July 31st, 2001, 12:21 PM
Hmm ... I thought I had a picture with me, but it looks like I don't. I'll have to remember to work on that tonight when I have some spare time. :)

They do look a lot like other runes, but often the names and meanings are totally different. It's strange. I'm not really worried if they were made up just for the game, because they do work for me regardless. :)

They just don't quite match the same runic alphabet that the game claims to have gotten them from, which to me makes no sense. **LOL** So I thought maybe they got them from a different source and just aren't saying.

August 1st, 2001, 03:37 AM
I've played the Ultima games for years now and I know what you're talking about. ^_^ The runes they use MOSTLY resemble the Futhark runes.. a couple even match up alphabetically. I'm pretty sure that Origin did change the meanings for use in the game though.

Hope that helped!

August 1st, 2001, 01:48 PM
Okay. Here it goes. (I have no idea how attaching the file to this thread will actually look, but I also have no better method for doing it.) This is a graphic taken by getting a screen dump of a web page that I was working on. (A painful way, I know, but for some reason the web page doesn't look right when uploaded, but looks perfect when I open the file off of my hard drive. So I had to find an alternative method of displaying the runes than just pointing you to the URL of the web page.) The runes are all individually scanned in images of the runes as I've re-created them in real life (out of wood) based on the game.

The meanings (for me at least) go as follows:
AN - Negate
BET - Lesser
CORP - Death
DES - Down
EX - Freedom
FLAM - Fire
GRAV - Energy
HUR - Air
IN - Create
JUX - Harm
KAL - Summon
LOR - Light
MANI - Life
NOX - Poison
ORT - Magick
POR - Movement
QUAS - Cause
REL - Change
SANCT - Protection
TYM - Time
UUS - Raise
VAS - Greater
WIS - Knowledge
XEN - Love
YLEM - Earth

The meanings are mostly the same as the Ultima Underworld games. I have however made a few minor changes in definition, such as defining Matter as Earth, and adding the Xen runestone on my own, which was only just barely mentioned at one point in one of the games and was not defined or depicted graphically. For the most part though, they're straight out of the game.

It's kind of odd that there is no specific 'water' rune. **shrug** But that hasn't actually hindered them or me yet.

Some of the runes like An, and Bet are more like adjectives/adverbs sometimes, so work (at least for spells) only when used in conjuction with another rune. And the runes themselves work best when used in groups of two or three to form a rune spell.

I'm expecting that they were just made up for the game. Which is fine with me since they work for me, and to me, that's all that matters. :) I was just hoping that there might have been some arcane and hardly known about branching of a runeset that the game developers had stumbled across. **L** That way my runes would at least have a history deeper than just, "They came from one of the best video games ever made." Heh heh. :)

August 1st, 2001, 05:39 PM
Off the top of my head, all these sigils are Runes from one Futhark, or another, except maybe the one that looks kinda like a Celtic cross, or medicine wheel (doesn't mean it's NOT used by somebody in some Futhark, just means I don't remember it). These are very interesting... thanks for posting them up. We'll see if this Old Dog can learn some new tricks here. :D

August 3rd, 2001, 09:02 AM
Yeah. The one that doesn't look like it belongs is one that I made up one day after a meditation. Heh heh. :)

I guess they're probably just a mongrel set. Which works for me since my heritage is just as chaotic. Maybe that's what makes the runes work well for me. :)