Britannia News Network
The Britannia News Network (abbreviated BNN) is the official news network of Ultima Online. It appears on the official website and documents various in-game events and supporting fiction. Articles are written by various development team members, sometimes written under their own developer handles, but usually written under various pseudonyms meant to be fictional, in-game characters.
- The Yew Times - Issue 4 - May 23
- The Awakening - Act IV Part 2 - May 11
- The Awakening - Act IV - April 30
- The Yew Times - Issue 3 - April 12
- The Awakening - Act III - April 10
- Noteworthy Persons - Queen Mum - April 6
- The Yew Times - Issue 2 - March 15
- The Awakening - Act II, Part 2 - March 15
- The Awakening - Act II - March 1
- Noteworthy Persons - The Yattering - February 22
- The Awakening - Act I, Part 2 - February 14
- The Yew Times - Issue 1 - February 7
- The Awakening - January 11
The original name of the BNN was the Town Cryer. The Town Cryer was started as a sort of "newspaper" of in-game events during the original alpha and beta stages of Ultima Online as a way to get potential players more involved in the future of the game. Development team members as well as various leading volunteer testers contributed stories about various in-game events from a roleplaying point of view, when in reality most of the events being written about were merely staged to stress test critical game systems.
The word "Cryer" in Town Cryer was intentionally misspelled. As Middle English, the dominant language of the basic area and time period of which Ultima Online was originally modelled after, featured a wide variety of words making use of the letter Y that are now spelled with the letter I or E instead, such as "hym" (him), "tyme" (time), and "womynn" (women), it was thought that spelling "Crier" with a Y would evoke a feeling of medieval times.
The Town Cryer was renamed sometime after the move from OWO.com to UO.com. Focus shifted from merely featuring newspaper-style write-ups of in-game events, to providing backstory and local histories, as well as corollary tales for the purposes of further immersion.
The Town Cryer's transition to the Britannia News Network was meant to signal a larger-scale effort to provide in-game fiction that would require more than just a simple newspaper format to cover. Articles were written as on-the-spot reports, character histories, backstories for upcoming events, and calls to arms.
BNN Audio News
Leading up to the announcement and release of Ultima Online: Renaissance, the BNN began a daily, and eventually weekly, audio broadcast. These broadcasts featured live reports on location, interviews with prominent in-game characters, and amusing in-game advertisements. BNN Audio News was meant to simulate the news being broadcast through communication crystals in homes throughout Britannia, with these same crystals being used as the "microphones" of the reporters.
List of BNN Articles
This is a list of pages, by year, containing lists of all of the currently known Britannia News Network articles in reverse chronological order.