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Downloads Home » Age of Empires: Single Player Campaigns » Scipio and the Second Punic War

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Scipio and the Second Punic War

Author File Description
imhotep
File Details
Number of Scenarios: 3
Difficulty: Mod-Hard
Publius Cornelius Scipio, more commonly know as Scipio Africanus, is noted as one of history's greatest generals. During the Second Punic War (219-202 B.C.), Scipio was the hero of the Roman Republic who defeated the Carthaginians and their mighty general, Hannibal. This 3 scenario campaign chronicles Scipio's military career during these years and takes us from his early conquests in Spain to his final victory against Hannibal in Africa. Scipio's career can be viewed as falling into three distinct periods marked by great battles, each of which were turning points in the war. This campaign is an attempt not only to capture the essence of each of these battles, but, more importantly, to involve the player in the actions surrounding each important period as well. In part 1, Scipio the Younger: The Siege of New Carthage, you are the young commander placed in charge of the Roman armies in Spain. To some you are seen as too young for the responsibilities of military command and statehood, but you are out to prove them wrong by taking back what the Carthaginians have stole. Part 2, Scipio Imperator: The Final Conquest of Spain and Battle of Ilipa, tests your abilities as a diplomat and military tactician as you attempt to finalize your victory in Spain. 3 separate missions await you as you gather your forces to drive the Carthaginians from Spanish soil. Scipio Africanus: The Battle of Zama, pits you against the mighty Hannibal himself and his veteran army. Now in Africa, you must deal with native enemies and enlist the aid of your African allies. Will you be cunning and bold enough to meet the challenges of a foreign land and to face the undefeated champion of Carthage?
AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Steve Ryan
Rating
5.0
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance5.0
Creativity5.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Added category for all contest campaigns: Historical Rating - 5 Brief description of topic area: Follows the campaigns of Scipio Africanus during the 2nd Punic War. OVERALL SUMMARY/COMMENTS ON THE CAMPAIGN: Playability: You can't make 'em better than these scenarios. Each one plays superbly with good victory condition, relevant units, heaps of things to do, plenty of action, puzzles, battles, as well as economy and diplomacy. Optional victory conditions and mission and alternative ways of playing the scenarios make them classics. Creativity: Every trick in the book and then some. I though AOE held no more secrets for me but I was wrong. This is as good as it gets for a single player! Use of unit and relevance was excellent. Balance: You won't win these scenarios unless you think (and sometimes think hard). Using the strategy employed by Scipio will help in each case! All are winable but are also easily losable, as I found out to my lost 1 hour detriment on 2 occasions. Balance is about spot on, you are under pressure, but can gain some time with judicious use of units. Map Design: Imhotep does not stint at all. He places each tree in some cases as some forest have such a diverse range of foliage, they could not be swept onto the map. No detail is to fine for this author, from the placement of gold and stone in relevant places to bridges and oasis where they should be. Story/Instructions: A very readable story. Not just copied from a history text, but embellished real character narratives that make you want to read on and play on. The instruction and Victory Conditions are creative and relevant. Of course with Imhoteps attention to detail the Victory conditions all worked superbly. The last scenario did have me stuck for a while and I though maybe the author had tripped up (I should've known better) in the end it was one the most challenging and enjoyable victory conditions of all. The bitmaps at the start of each scenario have to be seen to be believed (I think they look better than Ensembles!) ps Note the author even puts his net name "Imhotep" on the map board with a little Pyramid (Imhotep was a great architect from ancient Egypt who was credited with designing the first successful pyramids) Historical Accuracy: Not just accurate in text but in maps and situation. You get to play these scenarios as though you are Scipio. I could ramble on for ages but.. Scenario # 1 Comments: Playability: (Is the scenario captivating and enjoyable?) Wow, this is just a beauty. Heaps of interesting thing happening, plenty of pressure but good position. I had to keep returning to saved games. If you lose your alliances it gets real tough. I admit I wanted to wipe out Septegum before fulfilling the Victory conditions. Creativity: (Have we seen these ideas before, or is there something fresh and remarkable?) I guess nothing here was new but it was all very nicely crafted. Allowed for you to use some strategy like Scipio would have. Alliances really meant something as splitting your forces in this scenario makes it really difficult. The use of units, the hero supplied as Scipio, the need to use naval as well as ground forces (Just like Scipio) really added to this scenario. Balance: (Winable but not too easy? Challenging even after you've won it?) This was absolutely spot on, I had to go back about an hour after losing alliances running out of resources and failing to attack the main Carthaginian Stronghold. The pressure is nicely weighted and at no stage can you really relax. Map Design: (Enjoyable to look at? Cliffs and elevations used reasonably?) Lovely design, followed the terrain nicely and was a good rendition of the actual contours of Spain, with allowances for the battles that needed to take place. The creation of an area for Scipio to attack without going directly at New Carthages walls was a nice touch (even though I missed it). The resources were nicely balanced and the city and road layout just spot on! Story/Instructions: (Are they clear? Do you know everything you need? Do they draw you into the scenario?) Well maybe this guy has had some coaching from Gordon Farell. I could have just read the story and been happy enough. I got a real feel for Scipio, his need for revenge his heroism and his inexperience. After reading the intro I couldn't wait to play the scenario. Victory condition were spot on, but then with the attention to detail in this scenario I would have been astounded if they hadn't worked. Historical Accuracy: (Accurate bit map? Accurate scenario map? Accurate situation/dates/characters?) As far as I could tell this was history plus. Imhotep sticks to all the detail but gives his characters some life by embellishing their story with personal anectodes. I must admit, and this is a credit to the game AOE as well, I think this is as close to covering this campaign of the 2ND punic war as you could get without making a movie! Scenario #2 Comments: Playability: (Is the scenario captivating and enjoyable?) After # 1 I couldn't wait to play this. I wasn't disappointed. 3 Mission (real missions) in one scenario, a way of playing the scenario again and again in a different way and a great overall setup made this clearly a top flight scenario. Creativity: (Have we seen these ideas before, or is there something fresh and remarkable?) Got it all, I think he invented the word creativity. New ideas all over the place (did you know you can load blind lame priest onto a boat?). Diplomacy and war at it't very best! Balance: (Winable but not too easy? Challenging even after you've won it?) Wow, I thought I could not win this.. it took me ages but was enjoyable all the way. You have many options to win (alliance helping but not much). Until I found some vital heavy artillery I was struggling (the setup for where the artillery (helos) was, was sensational! Map Design: (Enjoyable to look at? Cliffs and elevations used reasonably?) The whole 9 yards no detail is left out or left to chance. The entire map is covered in deatil, no bland forests to fill in space. This guy uses the AOE map like a canvas and I think he would be mortally wounded if we did not like every bit of his map. I did. Story/Instructions: (Are they clear? Do you know everything you need? Do they draw you into the scenario?) He doesn't quite match up to Gordon Farrell but he't pretty damn close. The story was compelling and the characters are given depth and feeling. I would have been happy just reading it. Instructions were spot on and many bonus missions mentioned. Victory condition worked well. Historical Accuracy: (Accurate bit map? Accurate scenario map? Accurate situation/dates/characters?) Not just an accurate history but a well embellished story. The most appealing thing is being able to complete the scenario using the same strategy and diplomacy that Scipio himself employed. Scenario #3 Comments: Playability: (Is the scenario captivating and enjoyable?) He't done it again, plenty of pressure at the start and then a nice build up and destroy. It seems like something is always happening. At the end I thought one of the victory conditions was impossible I should've known better. An all round winner. Creativity: (Have we seen these ideas before, or is there something fresh and remarkable?) You'd think this guy would run out of ideas.. but no he's pulled of a heap of new ones for this scenario! And all damn good! Balance: (Winable but not too easy? Challenging even after you've won it?) I thought after the initial onslaught all i needed was to get a bunch of helos and blow away Hannibals army, but a big surprise was in store. How do you convert Hannibal without a temple and Gaia priests stuck on the other side of the map. Good luck. Map Design: (Enjoyable to look at? Cliffs and elevations used reasonably?) Got the feel for Scipio't Victory at Zama just right. The shape of the maps allowing for the playability was spot on ! Watch out for the fine detail Imhotep includes wether it't bridges, cliffs or a little oasis right where it should be. Nothing is left looking random. Story/Instructions: (Are they clear? Do you know everything you need? Do they draw you into the scenario?) Got it right again. If an author rights a good story, history embellished with personality, it draws you in, the victory condition are relevant, fun and accurate how can you give it anything but a perfect score. Historical Accuracy: (Accurate bit map? Accurate scenario map? Accurate situation/dates/characters?) Ditto Ditto Ditto.
Frank Steidel
Rating
5.0
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance5.0
Creativity5.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Added category for all contest campaigns: Historical Rating - 5 This campaign covers the conquests of the man who would later be known as Scipio Africanius. The Carthagian general, Hannibal, has crossed the Alps and is terrorizing the Italian mainland with his army. Hannibal's base is in Hispania (Modern day Spain) and Scipio's campaign begins there. The Roman's have failed to stop Hannibal in Italy, so other means to force Hannibal to withdraw must be tried. The first scenario, "Scipio the Younger-The Siege of New Carthage" starts with the Romans based north of the Ebro River. Your goal is to take the City of Carthago Nova (New Carthage). Between you and your goal is the city of Saguntum and their forces. This enemy must be dealt with. Scipio has some friendly tribes in the area to help him out. One tribe, The Celtiberians, are neutral and the player must be careful not to make an enemy out of them or this scenario will be much more difficult to complete. Be careful with your siege weapons here. The second scenario, "Scipio Imperator-The Final Conquest of Spain and the Battle of Ilipa" has the player not only taking the part of Scipio, but also in charge of completing the missions of two of Scipio's subordinates, Lucius and Silanus. Each of the three commanders and their forces start in a different part of Hispania. Lucius must take out the garrison of Orongis and capture the Academy there. When the garrison spots Lucius's force, they will attempt to destroy the academy before the Roman's can take it. You will have to act fast to complete this part of your mission. Meanwhile, the forces under Silanus are ordered to find the hidden mountain encampment of Hanno and defeat him. After Lucius and Silanus finish their missions, they are to unite with Scipio and together defeat the Carthagians at the climatic battle at Ilipa. This scenario has some problem solving elements in it and the map contains lots of interesting features. Of special note is the "Oracle of Carteia" with it's esoteric vision. The Final scenario takes Scipio to the North African coast in "Scipio Africanus-The Battle of Zama". Hannibal has finally been compelled to return to his homeland to fend off the Romans. Here Scipio must defeat Hannibal in this famous battle. The Roman Senate won't give Scipio much help, so he needs to use the resources and friends on the continent to help him finally defeat Hannibal and his army. The Author obviously put a lot of study into his subject. The introductions, which are written in the first person are excellent. Each scenario starts with several paragraphs of story that really makes one feel like part of the game. At the conclusion of each scenario the player is treated to a chapter of history that is interesting, well written and informative. As in this Authors past work, The bit maps that accompany the introductions are stunning pieces of art. The Creativity is top notch. For instance, The way the enemy encampment in the third scenario is afire when Scipio reaches it is an excellent effect. The victory conditions are well thought out and avoid the total destruction requirement that has players searching for that last enemy unit or building long after the outcome is no longer in doubt. The author also has a method of using priests that I've never seen before. Play balance is also outstanding. The only part of the campaign that I had to resort to repeated loading and replaying was the beginning of the first scenario. Even then, after I made a small adjustment to my strategy, I was able to continue without resorting to repeated saves. That is not to say that the campaign is easy. I found I was continually challenged and all three of the scenarios maintained my interest throughout. Playability is unparalleled. There are several ways to go about winning these scenarios. The final two in particular offer the player many options on how to achieve his goals. As an extra benefit, the author has included a list of optional missions and things to do "Just for Fun". I could easily play this campaign through a couple of times and not get bored. The play maps and use of terrain are also among the best I've seen. As an example, Check out the way the desert in the final scenario has lots of green in it, Particularly around King Syphax's city of Cirta. This wasn't done by using grass tiles but rather by making large use of gaia grass patches. See the palimino (wild Horses) inclosed in their own pen of pine trees. Check out the rock outcroppings used as paths in the city of Ilipa. Look at the dead trees used in large clusters to make brier patches and enclosed yards. The effects are many. This is a campaign that passes muster in every aspect and a definite recommondation for downloading. My hats off to the author on this one.
Gordon Farrell
Rating
5.0
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance5.0
Creativity5.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Added category for all contest campaigns: Historical Rating - 5 The numbers tell it all. Imhotep has both pushed the envelope of historical campaign designing and executed his scenarios with a lavish measure of detailing that makes each of these three gems a joy to play. Where do I begin listing the strengths of this marvelous mini-campaign? The situations are enjoyable, never oppressively over-populated, always requiring thought, exploration, and varying levels of problem solving, as well as building up and attacking a difficult enemy position. Imhotep's story-telling is also impeccable. His opening scenario truly draws you into the underlying motives and the emotional life of the protagonist, although by the third scenario the story becomes slightly too concerned with who's-allied-to-who mintutiae rather than the inner life of the historical persons. And, oooh, I could split hairs further: there is the occasional misspelling; amid deliciously accurate Celtoiberians and Numidians a generic "friendly tribe" pops up; and the Roman title Imperator is not translated QUITE accurately (at least, according to my sources)... but splitting hairs like this is ridiculous. Let me instead mention some of the special touches that make this campaign so memorable: The terrain maps are a constant joy, full of misleading paths, mountain ridges, glens and rivers. In scenario one, having been told you've come (in part) to avenge the deaths of your uncle and father, what are the first words Imhotep has contrived to appear on the screen? "Cnaeus Scipio defeated, Publius Scipio defeated." Poignant indeed. The touches that intertwine his exquisite bit maps with the instructions include moments like this: After reading "You pick up the gladius and point to a place in Southern Spain" your eyes flit to the map. Sure enough. You've pointed your gladius (Spanish sword) at exactly the spot Scipio will mention next. Finally, for those who wish to lose themselves in the Punic War world Imphotep has created, he assigns you additional side-quests (not unlike, say, "Betrayal in Krondor") which are not required to win but allow you to dwell in his marvelous recreation as long as like. This kind of generosity, if you will (I can think of no better word right now) truly distinguishes the rich spirit of "Scipio and the Second Punic War" and lifts it well beyond (in this judge's opinion) even the best campaign designing we've seen so far. Hail, Imhotep! Imperator of the .Cpn File! Final note: I have no idea what the other judges' opinions are as I write this. Although the reader might easily see that this campaign is my choice for best in the contest, three other opinions will have to be weighed, as well. Good luck, Imhotep.

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Rating
5.0
Breakdown
Playability5.0
Balance5.0
Creativity5.0
Map Design5.0
Story/Instructions5.0
Statistics
Downloads:3,447
Favorites: [Who?]1
Size:438.00 Bytes
Added:11/16/98