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Annex of the Two Rivers

Author File Description
FireLegion_56
File Details
Number of Scenarios: 1
Difficulty: Mod-Hard
A campaign about the Parthian War. It’s 1 scn and got a mix style of game play. It use the new unlock beta stuff, also got some custom avis. Sorry if the file is a bit big (2mb)
I hope you enjoy it, also if you finished it post some comments about it.

Note:
Put the avis in your avis folder.

Tropper (aka FireLegion_56)
AuthorReviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Richard Ames
Rating
4.6
Breakdown
Playability4.5
Balance4.5
Creativity5.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions4.0
Playability: 4.5

Annex of the Two Rivers is a unique and entertaining scenario, beginning with a non linear FF part with a little defending at the very start. It becomes sort of a puzzle to find out what you must do, because it is clear you won’t be destroying the wonder with just your starting troops. Exploration, micromanagement and a good choice of path will bring you to the areas you need to find. The scenario then moves into a limited B&D style with finite villagers. I felt the player should lose if they lost all their villies here.

You would be better to restart if you can’t keep the majority of them alive anyway, because the speed and difficulty of your victory will depend much on them. Once you got the villagers you are reasonably free for the rest of the scenario. Attacking their wonder is the next goal, which will mean you will have to penetrate well into their defenses. After that you will have to build your own wonder, and then claim some artifacts from the enemy. I enjoyed all parts of this mission, but when I got to the end I still needed to build the wonder, and building it just takes too long, especially with limited villagers, and is almost impossible if you lose a lot; I ended up using steroids. I think it would be better to change it to something else like constructing various buildings in certain places around the city.

A few other issues: The Siege W/S should be fully blocked at the back to prevent units being trapped in there (happens if you create quite a few at once); tributing between players in massive amounts looks a bit sloppy (unless that was intentional?), and the trades (traders) change to enemy if you splash damage them.

Balance: 4.5

Balance in this mission was good, with the puzzle of what to do at the start, the difficult path there, the strong defence of both areas, and the additional puzzle of finding the best way to attack them. Once you get the villies the difficulty is a lot lower, though you do have to protect them. Because of the terrain the enemy can’t really attack you much but when you are in their base you’re going to hear a thing or two from them. The temple was a bonus addition that I missed out on; you’ll have to come well armed to take it.

Creativity: 5

Strong creativity in this campaign earns it a 5.0. The map is very creative with the first recorded use of Scenario_t_c’s new enhanced editor for RoR, and some great new eye candies like the fires and grass clumps in the river. The scenario has both a beginning and ending AVI file, which is very unique. There are some creative optional objectives too, like the finding the well. The gameplay is unique with a mix of styles ending in an interesting take of B&D style.

Map Design: 5

This is the strongest area with a definite five. Unless you’ve never played one before you’ll know Tropper’s maps are great to look at. This one is one of his best, with masterful designing among the best seen. The map has a lot of desert, which is quite tricky to design, but it is done very well, with a nice rolling dunes and terrain cracks approach, with scattered oases and tree clumps. Then there are the Tigris and Euphrates, which are a beautiful contrast loaded with eye candy and forests. Look at how the vegetation radiates from the water – it looks both realistic and mesmerizing.

The rivers are designed nicely with a cactus-desert patch base and strips of deep water painted nicely into the small gap between the two shores. There are great eye candies everywhere, I especially liked the waterfall with Gaia trees on the cliffs, the ruins was a terrific scene, and as I’ve mentioned the well afforded the scenario a ‘new’ unit.

Story: 4

This area is the weakest and needs the most work. The title doesn’t sound right; annex is a verb or a noun meaning an extension on a house or to a document. I think it should be annexation (e.g. compare ‘Seize of the two rivers’ and ‘Seizure of the two rivers’). The spelling and grammar is poor, which makes the readability suffer and reflects poorly on the scenario. This is similar to how bugs really ruin playability. The loss message (‘Trajain is dead, on the gorund. Be trody over by the horse men he veiwed so a drity’) for example is barely readable. I’m sure you know how to use a spell check, and I can’t see why you haven’t used one. Just proof reading and using a word processing program would improve this area dramatically, and you can always get help from someone if you want to.

In contrast the bitmap is outstanding. The story is a little short, the instructions are very good, and the history section is nice though I would like to see a bit more length here too if possible. I also found the ‘Easter egg’, well hidden!

Overall: 4.6

Despite its flaws this history making campaign is one of the finest of 2005, and one of the best maps ever made for AoE.
rakovsky
Rating
4.4
Breakdown
Playability4.5
Balance4.5
Creativity5.0
Map Design4.0
Story/Instructions4.0
Playability: 4.5
My main problem with playability was that the first time I played up until I destroyed their wonder-in-progress, my villagers got killed in northern base while imprisoned, and I didn't realize it because I was focused on capturing the northern base. So I reloaded back to the save point before they got killed.

Balance: 4.5
Good balance, but I found it hard on Moderate.

Creativity: 5
Very creative.

Map Design: 4
The paths were sometimes so narrow that it made fighting and moving forces hard.

Story/Instructions: 4
Nice creativity in the story. But it sounded like a transport was supposed to show up when I stood someplace along a cliff, but the explanation about this was not clear and specific enough. I think that there is a transport that shows up in the far northern end when you get near it, and other transports that show up when you get to the rivers that are farther east.

Additional Comments:
Richard Ames writes: "I also found the ‘Easter egg’,". I was really perplexed what the Easter Egg was. I'm sure that the Easter Egg that it must be the stormy features in the far right of the map, because it's the only special or surprise feature of the map that neither Richard nor the scenario designer mentioned in the Reviews or the Scenario Instructions.

Let me give some hints:
There is a set of catapults and siege factory near the south corner; there is a house with a priest to the northwest of the lake; there are two priests and a temple that you can walk to in the middle of the map, north of your catapults. The Hints section says to use the Romans' Civ advantages. Those are: Swordsmen attack 30% faster, and towers and buildings are cheaper. A boat that you can use is at the very top of the river.

Here is how I beat it on MODERATE:
I merged my west forces into my southern ones, saved the priest, and then took out the south tower with my catapults. But the south tower seems pointless to destroy because I can't seem to pass the cliff and shoals area north of it. There is only one transport boat for the western river that I can find, and it's in the far north. When you get to the yellow base in the far north, you need to rush attack it before they kill your villagers imprisoned there.

[Edited on 06/22/19 @ 12:45 AM]


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Rating
4.5
Breakdown
Playability4.5
Balance4.5
Creativity5.0
Map Design4.5
Story/Instructions4.0
Statistics
Downloads:1,597
Favorites: [Who?]0
Size:2.53 MB
Added:12/05/05