The Ultima series has long been a staple in the gaming industry as one of the most revered and respected gaming franchises ever. The creator of the series, Sir Richard Garriot, recently did something that you wouldn't have expected from someone who presumably has more important things to do with his time: he forgave a pirate for pirating the game... 27 years ago.
The exchange started with Joshua Dudley, who explained in his original tweet that 27 years ago, when he was just 13, and back when Ultima VI was all the rage on PC, he pirated the game. Dudley admits that as a young teenager he only earned $3 a week for allowance and it just wasn't enough to pay full price for Ultima VI.
Dudley resolved to piracy as his means of getting his hands on the game, something a lot of youngsters (and some older folk) used to do back in the day to play a game when it wasn't available via shareware. Piracy wasn't the easiest thing to pull off back then via the internet, but it was super easy if a friend had a floppy disk of the original and you had an empty disk or two lying around.
Dudley, now 27 years older and a contributor for The Observer, beseeched Garriott for forgiveness. In a tweet, Garriott not only forgave Dudley but also invited him to New Britannia in his current game, Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues. The title is currently undergoing lots of development in Early Access over on Steam. The MMO is being hailed as a spiritual successor to Ultima Online.
If you were into CRPGS, then Ultima was the ultimate gaming experience way back in the day. Origin Systems, at the time headed up by Warren Spector and Richard Garriot, were rocking and rolling in success before it was sucked up by Electronic Arts and later had all of its projects canceled before being shut down completely.
Origin Systems was famous for making some of the most recognized games in the history of gaming, including Wing Commander, Crusader, and Privateer.
It's amazing how influential Origin Systems' games were back in the day, and the amount of respect their titles demanded from an audience craving high-quality gaming experiences. In the case of Joshua Dudley, the childhood wonderment of playing Ultima VI may have come at the expense of pirating the game, but he felt compelled many years later to apologize for his offense and hopefully he paid for a legitimate copy of the title from GOG.com.