This is more of a lesson on game dynamics. I use this to live by and I might add that I have a very easy time at it. People who read Stratics Forums will find this info familiar. Hope this helps anyone who reads it. I claim credit to very little of this, most is on Stratics and in misc forums. Keep in mind that this isn't a tell all document, but rather a guide. Don't take everything here as being exact, but instead, learn from it and see if you can use this information help you understand the game better.
UO GridA good thing to remember for uo is that everything is binary. One of the easiest things to build in binary is a table, or grid. This is simply a two dimensional array of different values. These arrays, or grids, are very neat in programming because when the program creates them, it creates them in sequential order in your RAM. Think of it like this, draw a grid on the ground, toss a quarter in it. This is how most memory is allocated on your computer, but arrays are different. Where the quarter landed is the first spot, and the second spot is right next to it. This makes access to the information much faster, since you don't have to find where each piece is, you just need to know their starting point and move x number of spaces from there. Keep this in mind for skill gaining, I use it a lot on this page.
MacroingMacroing is the best thing since color graphics. My recommendations for macroing are simple. You will need 2 programs, UOAsist and UOLoop. The best thing I can say for macroing is that if you can do it without UOAssist, then by all means do. Nothing against UOAssist, but any macro that is running in UOAssist will be stopped by playing another macro. This is not the case with the built in macroing of the game. This means that you can cast a spell, use and object, and use a skill all at the same time. Unfortunately the in game system doesn't recognise items as well as UOAssist does, so anything complex should be handled by that. I am currently working on a macroing program myself, similar to UOLoop, and I'll post it as soon as it's done.
8x88x8 uses the grid on the uo map, and is best done on a boat where the landscape wont block any squares. This grid is 8 squares high and 8 squares wide. Now the tricky part. Every grid has resource square that could give you a gain. It's up to you to find this spot. Once you find it, your have a decision to make. 8 spaces north or 8 spaces south should give you a gain, so pick your direction and follow it by saying "forward one" or "backward one" eight times. When you hit the end, most people move off and randomly search for the next starting point. I recommend moving east and west 8 spaces and trying there. I've found that some people claim that they can pull in 5.0 in the high 90's before moving randomly again.
Power HourThis seems a little low key to be in this list but some people still don't understand it. Every day at midnight the server sets a timer on each character on every account to one hour. This timer starts as soon as that character is logged on, or immediately if the character is already in game. Keep in mind that this is midnight on SERVER time and not client time. This seems to confuse many people. Power Hour does not give out extra gains for your skills, it simply allows you to gain on failed attempts at skills. If it gave extra gains then every tamer would be in Moonglow taming puppies to gm.
Area Effect SkillsThese skills include Hiding, Spirit Speaking, Meditation, Musicianship, Peacemaking, Cartography, etc... These skills depend on the UO Grid, and are best gm'd with 8x8. The only thing stoping you from gaining these skills is space. If you dont 8x8 then the best bet is to walk around the world, and have them macroed to a UOLoop button. Keep in mind that Music and Hiding are suplementary skills and can get gains by using skills that coplement them (e.g. Stealth, Entice).
Targeting SkillsThese skills include Arms Lore, Detect Hidden, Eval Int, Item Id, Forensic Eval, Provocation, Entice, Lockpicking, Remove Trap, Animal Lore, Poisoning, etc... To gain in these skills you need to think in a grid. First gather a number of targets, then arrange them in a grid or line. Now, start your skill training with the first target in the line and if you succeed, move on to the next one. When you get a gain, try that target again until you succeed in your skill. If you don't get a second gain, move back to the first target and start over. Now lets look at this a little closer. Two key things jump out at me. First, the success of the skill. The Second is the grid. Think of a success as being all knowing, there is nothing about that specific target that could ever teach you anything in your current state. Note the mention of your current state. Now when you get a gain, you move back to the start, why? Because now that your skill level has changed, so has your current state, so what once you thought was useless, may have in fact held a key bit of info that you were not capable of seeing before. The grid layout helps you to see where you have started and where you are now, it also makes it easy to see how the targets can be reset with certain ones able to give gains.
Difficulty SkillsThese skills include Cartography, Lockpicking, Magery, Smithing, Carpentry, Tinkering, Mining, Remove Trap, Poisoning, Taming, Fencing, Healing, Macing, Swords, Tactics, etc... As you can see, some skills are in the targeting group as well. These skills not only need fresh targets, but also harder ones. The key to any difficulty skill is your needs. Do you want high skill gains, or low cost? Some of these can be done with 8x8, but last I check I've never seen a forge on a boat. The harder you use the skill the more gains you will get out of it, but it also get very very expensive this way. Find a reasonable level to train at and use that level often. This level varies on skills, some give good gains 10.0 above your ability and some gain best -10.0. Where this is different is power hour. During power hour you will gain skill points on failed skills. So failing a lot is no big deal. You should try to practice your skill at the hardest level possible during your power hour, the gains are usually worth it.
Monster DynamicsUO Monsters have a hidden timer that they are based on. This is 15 seconds. Every 15 seconds the creature will target the closest possible target and attack. There are however a few times when the 15 second interval is taken away. This includes (1)Aura Attackers, (2)Target Switchers, and (3)Venomous and Spell Casting Creatures. Aura Attackers have and area around them that does automatic damage to you in short intervals. This causes the creature to flag and attack you, regardless of their 15 second timing. Target Switchers have a unique feature to them. They keep an 8 tile radius around them. Anyone who breaks this circle will most likely be targeted. There are a few things that make this interesting. Breaking this circle will not always get you targeted. To break the circle you must walk or run through it. This is nice because you can teleport across it, or just stand still, and not have it effect you. This is why tamers like to have decoys for dragon taming, the decoy gets targeted and the tamer can teleport to the dragon and tame it with little fear of attack. Venomous creatures and Casting creatures will target you based on damage. Poisoning counts as recursive damage against you (or your opponent) and counts as a hit. Casters who cast a spell at you also counts as a hit. These are special cases because the attack had to have started already. This is only here to make a point on invisibility spells and peacemaking skill, and how they can be broken.
The next point on game dynamics for monsters is spell casting. Contrary to most peoples belief, monsters in uo are honorable. Before you pass out on that last comment, think of this. When was the last time you attacked a high level caster and you were greeted with a high level spell before it was ever hit? Monsters in uo will not cast spells unless they have been hit first, but make note that it does not have to be your hit that makes it cast on you. If they hit you first this will also trigger the ok to cast. Aura monsters are exceptions to this rule because aura damage counts as a hit.
Item QualityThis is mostly for smiths. Some smiths seem to think that the quality of their wep/ar is strictly decided on by the gm mark. This is so untrue. Here's a test for you. Smith about 50 katanas and take them to your local blacksmith NPC and say sell. Now look closely at the prices. Notice anything? Thats right, every price is diferent. You see an item's quality is based on 3 attributes of that item. Durability, Accuracy, and Damage. You only need to hit a high note on one of those three to mark it exceptional. Thus the low prices. Wouldn't it be nice to make a name of yourself by selling katanas the are high in all three attributes? Guess what those high priced ones on your selling list are? This can also be done with a player vendor and hitting ESC to let them price it, or having high 90's in Item Id skill. Keep this in mind when you stock your vendors, you may see a change in business.