You stand on a foreign beach with 400 gold pieces, a body guard, and a scout. You have come to rescue your leader from a hostile king who holds him hostage. The fortified city on the hill is daunting, the pathways are guarded, and the local fishermen are forming a welcoming party with sharp, pointy sticks. If you do not think quickly and chose wisely, you will die here. Are you ready to die for a friend?
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Oh how I adore this outstanding single scenario campaign. This is truly one of the best in the granary.
I believe that nearly every thing use in this campaign had a purpose, whether to help you or merely throw you off. By the end of the scenario, one may see that many parts off the map can be passed by and still complete it. If this is the first time playing, you'll have an even better time, from not knowing where vital things are and also not knowing what's going to be thrown at you next. Just another reason you should save often. And with a note of finality, the type of terrain will undoubtedly affect how you can fight.
This was quite a challenge for me. At first, I thought the beginning was a little too tedious, so I gave up for a while. While converting the fishing village, you are eventually greeted by a huge force of archers. Thankfully, with Perseus' power and range you can hold most of them off. After you're settled, you have all wood and food you need, but that doesn’t help win the scenario all that much. It's the way you handle your units you've made with those resources that count. Especially when navigating the narrow paths of the hill.
Since you could build no military buildings, you had to really think before destroying or converting a building or unit. Speaking of units, you'll have to handle you heroes with care. Even they are not needed, they can help greatly in almost any area. With the lack of gold, you'll need to experiment what types of units you can make and where they are best used.
Map Design: 4.4
Right when you start, you are on a huge shore with some vegetation. A nice greeting indeed. To your left you must convert a fishing village with an interesting arrangement of docks. One thing you will easily notice is the nice blending of jungle and forest. Not only that, but under the forest were different terrain types, to make the floor more interesting. Grass and desert usually patches line paths and add a realistic touch. Once finishing this, one could easily say that this campaign wouldn't be what it is without the cliffs and elevation. I swear, even with a limit of a terrain height of seven, the way it is arranged with cliffs and trees, you'd think the hill keeps going on and on upward and that parts of the path are steeper than others. Not only that, but the elevation also provided strategic positions and could either help or hurt you. Design with beach articles, rocks, cacti and other little things added so much to the map. To me, the most beautiful part of the map was right at the end, with a lovely waterfall and fertile vegetation all around it. While few parts are a little bare, the map overall is great.
This had a very intriguing story concerning the relationships between two Greek city-states. After representatives of each get into feud, the opposing ruler holds fast to a gaia hero, which you must save and return to his own city-state. The victory and loss messages were nearly of the same quality of the main story. Even this contain a simple bitmap, I have to say it was very useful for locating major areas.
Download Recommendation: God, yes.
[Edited on 12/17/05 @ 10:09 PM]
Reluctant Guest is a classic mission by the well known designer Kyle Leach. In this level you have to rescue Hyperides from Halicarnassus, who have taken him as a prisoner. Your kingdom of Cos decides to send a rescue party to save him, who must work in stealth, rather then trying to take the fortress head on. The challenge is largely a puzzle one, with a lot of exploration. The one thing I didn't like about the level was the difficult path finding, and sending my units though that long forest path became very tiring. It took me almost four hours in all, and at the end I was quite proud that I had stuck to it and won, but also quite relieved I wouldn't have to see another chain of soldiers piled up in a forest bottleneck.
The challenge is one of careful unit management, wise conversion, planning, exploration and puzzle. It is a well balanced mission, but given the difficulty in getting troops to the other side of the map, and the extremely well hidden Draco, I think it is just a tad too hard.
A very unique level combining many different styles of designing and play. The map is a very large, detailed one, with many secrets to find. The story is an original fiction, with the detail that makes it more than just a simple rescue. The gameplay above all is very unique, where you must really concentrate on what you are doing, otherwise no amount of troops will really get you anywhere.
Map Design: 4
The map is very good for its time. There are some interesting eye candies, some which I found a bit much, but others that I really liked, like the use of cactus 4 throughout the map. The map was well designed, especially in the hiding place of the Gaia hero, and the way into the fortress, though the path finding to the north part was too much, with not only many log jam opportunities, but with only one path, there was also a lot of trouble with units going the wrong way and having to backtrack over and over to get on the right path.
A neat story to get you into the mission, with some well thought out details going beyond the simple purpose of having a reason for the mission. The instructions and hints are very good, not giving too much away, but giving you what you need.
Yet another great find, I'll be sure to check out the other levels by this designer next year.