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6/17/2015

Spoony Plays Ultima VII Part 2: The Serpent Isle, Part 14 (Finale)

We restore balance to the forces of order and chaos and the universe is saved.  But our victory is short-lived...



There's no going back once you enter the Temple of Balance, so before you set foot inside, be absolutely sure you have the following items!


  • Serpent Crown (hidden in Captain Hawk's stash in the forest north of Monitor, 85 South by 23 West)
  • Serpent Armor (locked up in Fawn's armory.  Give Yelinda the Comb of Beauty and she will give you the key to access it.  She is found in Gorlab Swamp after you track her diamond necklace with the Hound of Doskar)
  • Serpent Ring (reward for finishing the tests of Order in Furnace)
  • Serpent Earrings (a gift from Frigidazzi, given to you by Shamino after escaping from Freedom)
  • Serpent Staff (found in a troll den in Furnace.  Search them for a key to the door)
  • Serpent Necklace (given to you after liberating the Dream Realm in Gorlab swamp)
  • Chaos Serpent Eye (found on the Isle of Crypts)
  • Chaos Blackrock Serpent (Batlin attempted to use it at Spinebreaker to open the Wall of Lights, with disastrous results)
  • Order Blackrock Serpent (ended up in Stefano's possession due to a teleport storm.  Save him from the Death Knight and he'll give it back)
  • Balance Blackrock Serpent (in Silverpate's treasure cache in the frozen north, cave entrance at 50 North by 40 East)
  • Ophidian Sword (given to you by Xenka after completing the Shrine of Chaos.  It looks very similar to a Serpentine Sword, so be careful not to confuse it with one!)
So what's our lesson this time?  I suppose that all things should come in moderation.  We see that the three principles upon which Britannia's eight virtues are not practiced here, and that in the absence of a balancing force, take a very dire turn.  Monitor's devotion to "courage" leads to distrust and tension between the three clans, Fawn's devotion to Beauty leads to vanity and falsehood, and Moonshade's version of "Truth" results in an elitist and openly corrupt society.

On a larger scale, we also see that the loss of the Great Earth Serpent at Exodus' hand begins a chain of events that leads to the destruction of the Ophidian culture and, later on, the teleport storms (exacerbated by Batlin's capturing of the Banes).  We also learn that this cosmic imbalance, if left unchecked, will ultimately lead to the destruction of the entire universe.  The damage done to the Chaos Serpent also results in the birth of the three Banes of Chaos, untamed embodiments of the Ophidian Virtues who wreak havoc upon the land until the Avatar is able to capture and reunite them, restoring the Chaos Serpent to its former glory.  Of course, the matter is not truly resolved until the Great Earth Serpent is returned to the void as well, so that it can resume its role as the ultimate mediator between Order and Chaos.