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Ultima Manga

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Around 1988, when Origin and FCI were creating Japanese versions of the Ultima series, the Japanese publisher JICC published four manga based upon the games.

Exodus Edit

U3manga

The "Exodus"-manga

Publisher: JICC.
Author: Seiji Tanaka
Published: Aug. 15, 1988.
Length: 252 pages
Original List Price: 880¥ (about US$7)

"A space pilot named Genji gets sucked into Sosaria to battle Exodus, Mondain, and Minax, where he encounters the mage Aida, a robot named Bigelow, and a bard named...Lennon."

The first eight pages of this volume are in color, with the rest of the comic printed in black-and-white. The manga interprets the events of the NES-port of Ultima III, fleshing out the sparse narrative of the game.

The story follows the adventures of futuristic space explorer, Genji, who finds himself transported to Sosaria when a venture onto a previously unexplored asteroid results in him finding a gate to the world. He is eventually joined up by Aida, a peaceful, animal-loving cleric; Lennon, a paranoid and often disgruntled bard; and Bigelow, a mechanized robot with a capacity for human emotion.

The events of the comic differ widely from those of the Western Ultima series, and involve time travel and futuristic technology. Mondain and Minax, whose deaths were less explicit in the NES-port, work together alongside Exodus in this story, and are the fodder for earlier conflicts in the book before the final confrontation.

A complete English transcript of the story can be found here. Art examples in color and black-and-white can be found here.

Quest of the Avatar Edit

U4manga

The "Quest of the Avatar"-manga

Publisher: JICC.
Author: Yuko Tanaka
Published: Aug. 29, 1988
Length: 252 pages
Original List Price: 900¥ (about US$7)

The first eight pages of this volume are in color, with the rest of the comic printed in black-and-white. The manga interprets the events of the NES-port of Ultima IV, fleshing out the sparse narrative of the game.

The story follows the quest of the fifteen-year-old boy Deane, who was adopted in infancy by a druid of Yew after the murder of his mother, a knight of the Order of the Silver Serpent. The story revolves around his search for his adoptive brother Shiva, a druid who went missing in an attempt to become the Avatar.

Like the first manga, the events of the comic again prove very far flung from the expectations of Western Ultima fans. In Quest of the Avatar, many of the characters have switched genders as they did in the NES port. Iolo, for example, has become the fourteen year old girl "Io." Julia is now a thirty-eight-year-old male, still named "Julia," and Katrina is the ten-year-old boy "Kati."

A complete English transcript of the story can be found here. Art examples in color and black-and-white can be found here. A complete scanlated edition of the manga can be found here.

The Fall of Magincia Edit

Co jicc 3

"The Fall of Magincia"-manga

Publisher: JICC
Author : Hiroyuki Watanabe
Published: Dec. 15, 1990.
Original List Price : ¥980
Ultimacomics3

The scene in question

The foul magician Vitor, leader of the proud city of Magincia, is terrorizing Britannia's oceans with legions of monsters in the guise of pirates. Lord British sends the young pirate captain Susadora and Rani Sentri, leader of the Britannian Special Forces, to stop him.

The excerpt at left shows Lord British consulting with Lord Robert of the [[Lycaeum]] about an ominous statue.

A complete English transcript of the story can be found here. A partial scanlated edition of the manga can be found here.

The Maze of Schwarzschild Edit

U4-b

The strange asteroid

Co jicc 4big

"The Maze of Schwarzschild"-manga

Publisher: JICC
Author: Seiji Tanaka
Published: Nov. 15, 1991
Original List Price: ¥980

A sequel to the Exodus manga featuring the same cast, reincarnated in a space-station setting. Mondain and Minax, also reborn and present on the station, seek to free Exodus from the prison of a nearby black hole. Their experiments unleash undead monstrosities throughout the station.

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