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The C64 and Apple II Ultima FAQ

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The C64 and Apple II Ultima FAQ
April 6, 1996

Commodore 64 and Apple 2 Ultima FAQ Version 1.4
by Caliaber Dragon ([email protected])

This is my Frequently Asked Questions list for the Commodore 64
and Apple II Ultima games freely available on the internet.
This FAQ is divided into 4 sections.

 Section I: C64 Ultimas
 Section II: Apple II Ultimas
 Section III: Akalabeth
 Section IV: Closing

*** Introduction ***

Hello and welcome to this release of the FAQ. I have pretty
much refined it to the point where it doesn't need any more

Additions to this version:

-Information about ApplePC which has Mockingboard support.
-Information on Ultima V music on the Apple ][
-Information on C64 Ultima V music Program by Minstrel
-And more...

Need Help:

I wrote this FAQ as a service to all the Ultima players and
I realize that many of the procedures with all the .gz files
and everything may be difficult. I would appreciate it if
someone could provide me with a WWW page or allow me to put
all this stuff on their page. I would like to store the
Apple II Ultima's somewhere as .ZIP files (pkzip) so it will
be much easier for people to access the games and set them
up. I already went through all the hard stuff and so all you
have to do is unzip them and play instead of renaming files.

All I need is a place to display the FAQ and games for C64 and
Apple II on the WWW.


*** Section I: C64 Ultimas ***

Q. What is this I have been hearing about Ultima on C64?

A. There are many people who love the 8-bit Commodore and own PC
   compatibles. These people can  use emulators of the C64
   which allows them to use software for those computers.
   This software includes great games such as Ultima I,II,III,IV
   and V. All of this is freely available on the internet.

Q. And Apple II?

A. Yes, Apple II as well. On the Apple II you may play Akalabeth,
   Richard Garriot's first Ultima game released long ago as well
   as Ultima I-V. You do not need an Apple II itself to play
   though. See Section II.

Q. Why would I want to play Ultima games on a C64 emulator when
   I can play the PC versions?

A. The C64 versions of Ultima III and IV include music. It is
   good music in fact. It's worth getting them working just for
   that. Another thing is that not everyone has the PC versions
   of Ultima and don't want to buy them. It would be illegal to
   distribute copies of PC Ultimas, but the C64 versions for
   download are no longer sold so they can be downloaded.

Q. Ok, good. Now, what emulator can I get and where?

A. The Commodore 64 can be emulated several ways, there are
   many different programs available. PC64 is the one I most
   highly recommend, however there is also C64S. These two run
   on an IBM compatible at various degrees of success. For
   example, the music will not sound as good on a 386SX/16 as it
   will on a 486DX4/100.

   There is also a Linux C64 Emulator available I believe.
   You may want to check the Linux home page at
   and follow the software map.

   As of now, I'm not sure where you can get PC64.

Q. Where do I get the C64 Games?

A. ftp: /games/u

   There were FTP sites that mirrored the former C64 site, this site was the originator of the
   collection. Jeff Bryer was forced to remove his C64 collection
   and the mirrors came to death as well. This also happened to
   the mirrors of Watson as well. It was sad to see an entire
   collection of games vanish but you need not worry because
   C64 Ultimas are now available on the following site: /games/u

Q. Okay, I have all the games and stuff, how do I run them?

A. Please read the documentations for the emulators you are
   using. Note that there has been quite a bit of confusion
   about the documentation of PC64. There are two different
   versions, one is English and the other is German. The
   Enlish version is the one with the 'e' in the zip file.

Q. I am stuck in _insert name of game here_.

A. Check with WWW site: for hint files.
   Also, try reading the newsgroup
   This is the newsgroup for the Ultima Dragons Internet
   Chapter, an Ultima fan club.

Q. Where can I get the manuals for these games?

A. Try FTP.EA.COM and look for MANUAL.TXT, MANUAL.WRI, or
   MANUAL.ZIP. These are the instructions for the 6 pack of
   Ultima games on CD-ROM. For maps, try
   and they have scanned images of them which may be downloaded
   and printed.

Q. I can't get the music working in Ultima V.

A. The music in Ultima V can only be heard on a 128.
   However, Minstrel Dragon has written a program that allows
   you to hear the music in PC64.  Just check and you should be able to find it. The file is

   To run it, unzip it into a directory then go into your PC64
   directory and type:

              (path name)

Q. What about these games with the multiple disk images?

A. On the shareware version of C64S, they do not support
   multiple disk images, in other words you will need to shell
   out $60 to register it. In the shareware version of PC64
   you can use multiple disk images allowing you to play the
   games with more than one disk.

Q. In PC64 I try to open these files and I can't. It says they
   need to be .C64 files. What do I do?

A. Okay, you need to pull down the EMULATOR menu then choose NEW.
   Now, you can push F9 and choose the .D64 file you need. You
   can continue to do this and make more than one window open and
   switch back and forth between them. Remember, once you have
   loaded the .D64 file, push F5 to go into the emulator. You may
   push escape and goto the menu then come back by pushing F5
   again to go where you left off. See the manual for more

Section II: Apple II Ultima Games

Q. What is this I have been hearing about Ultima games on the
   Apple II?

A. The Apple II is a computer from the early 80's. The original
   Ultima Games were made on an Apple II computer. These games
   have become available on the internet and can be played on
   DOS, Windows, Linux and Macintosh computers.

Q. Ok. How do I emulate an Apple II on my computer?

A. FTP to and login as anonymous and give your
   email address as a password. I /pub/apple2 you will find several
   directories to get emulators.

    My favorite Apple ][ Emulator in ApplePC, which can be found at in /pub/apple_II/emulators. Get the newest
   version (2.40) and get Put them both in a directory
   and read apple.doc. ApplePC emulates a Mockingboard so you get
   the cool music in Ultima V.

    The next best one I have found is AppleWin which include 16 and
   32 bit versions and runs on 486 compatible computers in a
   Windows enironment. Download the emulator of your choice and
   set it up. Consult the emulator's documentation on how to do this.
   Unfortunately, this doesn't emulate Mockingboard.

Q. Ok. The emulator is working now where do I get the games?

A. The games are available from in the
   /pub/apple2/images/games/rpg directory. There you will find
   Akalabeth, Ultima I, II, III, IV and V. These disks have been
   compressed by a unix form of compression known as GZIP. All files
   will have the extension of .gz at the end.

   Get Ultima V from the /pub/apple_II/images/games/rpg/Ultima_V

   Here are step by step instructions for getting a disk image to

   1. Download the file. We will use Akalabeth.dsk.gz as an example.
   2. The file will probably have a shorter name due to the fact
      it is on a DOS computer. You will need to rename the file
      Akalabeth.dsk.gz from whatever it is present to something
      like akale.gz
   3. Download the gzip compression utility from somewhere.
   4. Use the command gzip -d akale.gz
   5. Rename the given file name from that to akale.dsk
   6. You may now load it in your emulator.

   A simular process is followed for all Apple II disk images.

Q. I can't get Akalabeth to boot in AppleWin, it screws up.

A. Follow this procedure to load Akalabeth:
   1. Click on the disk drive icon and load akale.dsk
   2. Click on the apple button

Q. Music in Ultima V?

A. Yes and no. Yes, if you use ApplePC and no if you use AppleWin.
   Go into the music configuration from the Ultima V menu and set
   ports 4 and 5 for Mockingboard. Note that it requires an Adlib
   compatible card. (any Soundblaster compatible will work)

Q. Which version of Ultima I should I get?

A. There are 2 versions of Ultima I available. The first is in the
   rpg directory and that is the 1986 version. The second is in the
   Ultima_I directory and is from 1981. The major changes are
   basically the graphics.

Section III: Akalabeth

Q. What is Akalabeth anyway?

A. Akalabeth is the very first Ultima. It was made by Richard
   Garriot in 1980 and he sold it in zip lock bags. It has been
   referred to as Ultima 0. All die hard Ultima fans must take
   a look at it.

Q. How do I play Akalabeth?

A. Basically, you explore the Akalabeth, World of Doom and do
   quests for Lord British.

 Here is what Malicious Dragon says:

Here's what I've found out about Akalabeth:
Once it sets your stats, you start in a town.  Press 'Q' to exit.

<CR> for North
<- for west
-> for east
/ for south

In dungeons, those keys mean forward, left, right, and turn around,

'A' to attack in dungeons.  No combat outside of dungeons.

Food is consumed at 1 unit per step on the outside, and .1 unit per movement
in dungeons.  And I thought starvation was a problem in other Ultimas...

'S' to check your current stats.

no savegame feature that I can see
symbols that look like giant 'x's are dungeons single boxes are trees
five linked boxes are towns(all with the same thing in them)
haven't found Lord British's castle yet. Everything of note that
can be entered can be entered by pressing 'x'
climbing up and down ladders and dungeons can be accomplished by pressing x
There is no difference between Fighters and Mages, except that Mages have
weaker combat abilities, but can use the mysterious Magic Amulet as a weapon.
Items in dungeons can be picked up simply by walking on them.
It's amazing how much Questron dungeon sequences resemble Akalabeth dungeon
sequences.  Garriot really DID set the standard.

(Thanks to Malicious Dragon)

Section IV: Closing

Well I suppose that wraps it up. Hopefully, if you didn't have any Ultima's,
now you will and should be able to play them. If you've been wondering
what Akalabeth was now you have it. This is just my contribution is the
Ultima Dragon's Internet Chapter, a virtual club that consists of fans
of the Ultima series of games.

As to ethical questions...

        Some people have brought up the point that having these
games on the internet is a form of piracy. They are no longer published
for these systems making them hard to find so they are considered by
some to be free works. I don't say anything on the issue so please
no flames.

Made by: Caliaber Dragon

Thanks to:
Jeff Bryer (Host of the original C64 site)
Malicious Dragon
Minstrel Dragon

Send comments, questions, flames etc. to:
If you have space on your WWW page for this
and the Apple ][ + C64 Ultima games, or
would provide me with a page for this, please
e-mail me.

 Caliaber Dragon
 [email protected]