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Trolls

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Trolls
Troll
Troll, from Ultima VII manual
Variants: Ice Trolls
First appearance: Ultima III
Last appearance: Serpent Isle

Trolls are the bane of travelers everywhere - a sentient race of brutes who achieve victory through surprise, firepower via thrown axes, and strength of numbers. Commonly encountered on bridges and lonely roads, trolls are capable of speech, as is evidenced in Ultima VII and both the Ultima Underworlds. In Ultima VII, the player may encounter and converse with an imprisoned troll in the jailhouse of Yew, as well as in the torture chambers below Buccaneer's Den. Trolls also hurl insults and threats (and sometimes rocks) at the player in Ultima VII whilst attacking.

A troll is one of the main instigators of the events leading to Ultima Underworld I. A clan of trolls controls a section of the Stygian Abyss and can be bargained with.

The Pagan trolls of Ultima VIII were a highly civilized race at one stage. The player may find a book written by the last civilized troll, lamenting the fact that his race are now nothing more than savages, and that his troll peers were insulting and abusive. This would lead us to believe trolls in Pagan are capable of communicating, though they almost always choose to do so through their clubs. Pagan trolls are much stronger than trolls in previous Ultima games.

There is only one troll in Ultima IX. Using an enlarged goblin model, he is encountered on a bridge just before Paws, demanding a toll from the player for safe passage.

After first appearing in Ultima III (without their signature throwing axes -- making them barely distinguishable from orcs or goblins), trolls changed little in behavior and looks. There are, however, three other types of trolls that differ from the classic Britannian troll:

  • The Pagan troll, the result of the Guardian destroying their minds, is a stupid, huge brute with a club.
  • In Ultima IX, a being that is called a "troll" is just an over-sized goblin.

LoreEdit

P29 troll

These large and evil creatures can hurl axes--of which they carry a plentiful supply--with frightening accuracy. Beware their tricks. Trolls are usually found in hills and mountains.

- from The History of Britannia (Ultima IV)

Large misshapen humanoids that like to live underground, trolls are strong and dextrous and can cause moderate damage to their victims. Fortunately, they are not very enduring. Trolls tend to lie in wait to ambush unsuspecting travelers. Trolls like treasures and often carry some with them.

- from The Book of Lore (Ultima V)

The brutish troll takes perverted pleasure in hiding beneath bridges so it can terrorize the unsuspecting traveler. Fortunately, trolls are relatively weak and they lack endurance, so they pose only a moderate threat when encountered.

- from Compendium (Ultima VI)

In the district where I was raised, it was not uncommon for Trolls to waylay an occasional traveler. Several times I have seen such brigands after justice had dealt with them, hanging from roadside crosses. Until I visited the Shrine of Compassion, therefore, it had not occurred to me how nearly civilized the Troll people are. After all, they use civilized weapons (stolen from us), wear tatters of clothing or hide, and speak a rough form of the same tongue which we speak. Curiosity next drove me to visit the Lycaeum on Verity Isle, where I learned that the Trolls had once been a mountain-dwelling people. Over recorded history, however, they have always moved closer to civilization - today, they are commonly found along roads and under bridges. I became convinced that the Trolls were fit candidates for the Way of the Avatar. My servitors and I traveled the roads of Britannia for two years, recruiting Trolls for our great Abyssal Experiment. Many of the monster forms rejected us, and some we were forced to slay in self-defense. However, I am glad to report that the Trolls accepted our ways and now constitute an important section of our community. It has been difficult for many to accept the presence of the Trolls. The Knights were trained from youth to slay such creatures on sight, and Goblins are a favorite food of Trolls. Nevertheless, the Virtues have triumphed. (And those Trolls who offend by dining on Goblin flesh are immediately exiled, if caught. - Corby)

- from Memoirs of Sir Cabirus (Ultima Underworld)

Troll(2)

This brutish creature is the bane of all travelers. Many tales relate how trolls hide beneath bridges in order to terrorize and prey upon all those who would cross it. The wise traveller would do well to exercise caution when crossing any bridge, especially those one may come across in the wilderness, far from the security of a city.

- from The Book of Fellowship (Ultima VII)

Long hunted and feared as monsters, these giants have only recently been recognized as sentient and, in their own way, civilized. They speak the human tongue and band together in loose tribes. However, there are still many, many trolls that simply wander the landscape preying on smaller, more vulnerable travelers, particularly the rarely sighted great Troll. Trolls are generally agreed to be the strongest species to walk on two legs.

- from A Safe Passage Through Britannia (Ultima Underworld II)

Troll4

Trolls are nothing more than bandits: large, fearsome bandits, perhaps, but bandits nonetheless. They set upon their targets with heavy bludgeoning weapons, hoping to stun or kill the victim quickly and claim its possessions as booty. Like as not, a troll will select for its home a secluded bridge.

- from Beyond the Serpent Pillars (Ultima VII Part Two)

Trolls are large, lumbering bipedal creatures, standing half again as tall as a man. Their skin color ranges from a pale green to an olive or tan, and they wear little in the way of clothing. Trolls move quite slowly, as if they must first decide where to place each foot before taking a step - though anyone who has watched a troll move through a small community, stepping on whatever is underfoot, knows better than to think a troll is careful. There are those who speculate that trolls are the offshoot of an ancient tribe of particularly evil and stupid Zealans, though none of the ancient tomes in Tenebrae support that theory.

Trolls fight poorly, being so slow and bulky. However, their solid strength means certain death for most who are careless enough to be struck. All trolls use clubs, usually pulled from dead vegetation, though even their powerful fists are enough to deliver a tremendous blow.

- from The Chronicle of Pagan (Ultima VIII)

Notable examplesEdit


TriviaEdit

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