Gorn

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Gorn
Gorn.gif
Gorn, from Ultima VII
Species: Human
Appearances
Ultima VII
Location: Meditation Retreat
Ultima VI
Gorn U6.GIF
Gorn, from Ultima VI
Location: Terfin
U6 Transcript: Gorn
The Ultima 6 Project
Gorn-U6Project.png
Gorn, from The Ultima 6 Project
Location: Palace of Blackthorn
Ultima V: Lazarus
Gorn-Lazarus.jpg
Gorn, from Ultima V: Lazarus
Location: Palace of Blackthorn
Ultima V
Gorn.png
Gorn, from Ultima V
Location: Palace of Blackthorn
U5 Transcript: Gorn

Gorn is a powerful warrior who hails from the world of Balema and appears in Ultima V, Ultima VI, and Ultima VII. Finding himself in Britannia after wandering into a moongate,[1] he would dwell there for many years and, at times, become a companion in arms to the legendary Avatar. Like many of otherworldy origin living in the realm, Gorn ages at a considerably slowed rate, his longevity spanning more than two Britannian centuries.

Biography[edit]

Life in Balema[edit]

Gorn, as he appears in Ring Quest
Despite spending much of his early youth overshadowed by his elder brothers,[2] Gorn grew into one of the strongest and most respected warriors of Balema. In his heyday he served as champion to its ruler, King Galt, under whom he gained considerable renown for his role in driving a great red dragon from the kingdom's western lands. He was assisted, at the time, by an unnamed royal adviser and an enigmatic sorceress known as Lisa, the latter of whom appeared to have lusty designs for the handsome fighter.

Tragically, a simple ring he had been persuaded to give to the smitten Lisa turned out to have dangerous enchantments bound to it, and the enchantress became ensorceled by the powers of Chaos that the artifact channeled. Turning her magicks against Balema, Lisa found herself Gorn's enemy, as the warrior quested against her with a strange otherworlder, brought from distant Earth with the assistance of the wizard Zandorf. This stranger bore with him the ivory ring of Order, and with it the pair were able to infiltrate the sorceress' dark tower and free her from the dark forces that possessed her. As this unnamed hero returned for his home-world, his last visions of Balema were of Lisa and Gorn embracing once more.

Age of Enlightenment[edit]

Gorn and Lisa
It is not known precisely when Gorn first came to Britannia, but the warrior soon found himself in dire straits in this strange new world. Having arrived by the years of the Oppression, Gorn was taken prisoner by Blackthorn's forces and lay jailed in the dungeons of the tyrant's palace by the time of Ultima V. Should the returned Avatar come to share such a fate, Gorn would gladly advise the hero as to the best route of escape if a mutual effort was agreed upon, having already attempted to flee numerous times unsuccessfully.[3]

Whatever the hero's decision, Gorn would survive to see Lord British's return and the end of Blackthorn's reign, and wandered freely about the land as an adventurer by the time of the Gargish invasion. In Ultima VI, he could be found exploring the ruins of the prison that once held him, trying his best not to run afoul of the mad mage, Sutek, who had laid claim to the area. Ever eager for travelling companions, he would join with the Avatar once again, if asked.[4]

Age of Armageddon[edit]

Over two centuries after the resolution of gargoyle-human conflicts, Gorn succumbed to the powers of the Guardian's Cube Generator, and was plagued by the malevolent entity's voice echoing through his thoughts. Thinking that this strange voice was his lost homeland's patron deity, Brohm, Gorn traveled to the site of the generator, seeking to free the great god from the Fellowship, whom he believed to hold Brohm captive. This insane quest proved troublesome to the Fellowship members inhabiting the isle, and Gorn clashed with the generator's guard, Iriale Silvermist.[5][6]

Should the Avatar encounter him in such a state during Ultima VII, Gorn would be obviously conflicted between his past friendship with hero and the commands resounding through his brain. Eventually, the Guardian would warn the barbarian that the Avatar could not be trusted, and Gorn would do his best to drive his former companion away, not wishing to have to attack at Brohm's behest.[7]

While the generator was eventually destroyed and the Fellowship dismantled, it is unknown if Gorn ever managed to free himself of the Guardian's influence, as immediately after the cube's destruction, the malevolent entity's voice still resonated in his head. Years later, when the Avatar came to the realm for the last time in Ultima IX, no record or sign could be found of the heroic fighter.

Ultima V: Lazarus[edit]

Gorn-U6.jpg

This is an Ultima V: Lazarus-related article or section. The information within may not apply to Ultima V or other Ultima games.


Found deep within Blackthorn's palace, Gorn would refuse to talk if the Avatar displayed the Black Badge, and while wearing it, the hero could choose to beat him within his cell. If the Avatar approached Gorn with the badge hidden from view, the barbarian would offer to aid in an escape, producing a key to unlock his shackles.

If Gorn joined the party, he could offer instructions on how to escape the palace unseen by Lord Blackthorn's guards, and directed the hero to retrieve his club from the northeast of the castle. The battered warrior also sought revenge upon Graesh, the Oppression torturer, saying they had spent much time together, but it had been all for naught for her.

Trivia[edit]

  • Gorn is the player's companion in The Quest (1983) and Ring Quest (1985), two adventure games designed by Origin employee Dallas Snell. The character was inspired by Arnold Schwarzenegger's portrayal of the titular barbarian in the Conan films.[8] "Gorn" also became Richard Garriott's nickname for Snell upon his joining Origin,[8] and the warrior's likeness in Ultima VI appears to have been modelled upon his real world creator, who further appears as Dallas Garrett in Martian Dreams and De Snel in Ultima VII.
  • Gorn's thick accent is unique to the Ultima series, and in the games that originally featured him, the barbarian was characterized as far more articulate and intelligent, often making helpful suggestions to the player character and taking initiative in hazardous situations. In these games, it is also revealed that Gorn holds champion titles in jousting and swashbuckling, is afraid of the dark and has been the target of past flirtatious misunderstandings with an ogress.
  • Beverlea of Paws' House of Items has a crib for sale which she claims was used to rock young Gorn to sleep.[9]

See Also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. GornUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "Britannia".
  2. GornUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "Balema, something else strange".
  3. GornUnderworld Dragon's Ultima V TranscriptUltima V. "job".
  4. GornEthereal Software's Ultima VI TranscriptUltima VI. "job, trafel, travel".
  5. GornUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "Brom, camp, cave, clearer, danger, follow, Iriale, what to do".
  6. Iriale SilvermistUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "Gorn".
  7. GornUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "it's a trick, find Brom, look for Brom".
  8. 8.0 8.1 Portalarium. "SotA Kickstarter Live Stream". YouTube. April 6, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-08.
  9. BeverleaUnderworld Dragon's Ultima VII TranscriptUltima VII. "rocking horse".