The Legend of the Great Magi
Posted on 09/26/11 @ 12:42 AM (updated 12/18/11
My "9 Player" scenario just got a new name - "The Legend of the Great Magi"
||Build and Destroy
Welcome to "The Legend of the Great Magi." I have been working on this scenario for quite some time, always tweaking it. It uses all 8 players in the game and has a complete Gaia base. There are also a lot of Gaia forces scattered about, along with a secret army and armada. When you discover the Gaia forces, they will assimilate into your forces. You have one ally besides Gaia, the rest you must defeat. There is also another Gaia base that acts as a 9th player, in that it is slightly aggressive. It attacks everyone else, and your enemies will attack it. It's not quite complete, still more work being done, but not bad.
STORY: The Great Magi of time has had much difficulty dealing with the present evils in his day. He has been run out of his homeland by the barbarians of the outer lands. He has finally come up with a plan. Being a student of history, he has used his powers, passed down to him from the many generations of Magi in the land of the Mystics, to go back and forward in time, and has convinced some of the greatest heros of history to help him rid the barbarians of his country. These barbarians also possess the powers of time-travel and have brought themselves more barbarians to aide them in their cause of global power. Fortunate for you, the barbarians that came with them have become greedy and now oppose each other. If any of them win, they will travel through time, and kill all the righteous. It is up to you, Xylon Draganthus, Leader of the Royal Order of Knights, (loyal servants to the magi) to vanquish all the barbarians of the outer lands, and bring peace to all the righteous. You have been sent here by the Great Magi, will you succeed, or will you fail?
INSTRUCTIONS: Build and upgrade your civilization and defeat the barbarians of the outer lands, and bring peace to this country, as well as throughout time. - SEE HISTORY
HINTS: Concentrate on upgrading, as you will need to be very powerful to defeat your enemies, because just as you seem formidalbe and have a huge army, so do your opponents.
Your enemies have laid some deadly traps for you, two on land, two in the sea, be careful.
There is monk hidden somewhere in the forest by a relic, be careful clicking on him, you may have an unwanted surprise. You better build some fortification around him first.
The heros are waiting for you in the twal garrison.
SCOUT: Find the secret Gaia forces and join them to your army.
Find your ally.
Find all the relics to generate gold.
Conquer all enemies.
Be aware of resources.
Be aware of wild animals.
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"The Legend of the Great Magi" by Xylon Draganthus is a conquest style scenario, currently having a project status.
The messiness that the previous version of this game was suffering from has been largely improved now. There is an actual storyline now (though not very developed). There are some beta units left (much less than in the beginning), but it would be great to somehow make them more part of your scenario by renaming them/giving them some king of purpose for being there.
The game itself is a standard conquest scenario, except you have huge resources stockpiled from the beginning and huge amounts of resources scattered around the map. Also, you and your enemies start with huge armies, too. Just to add up to the "hugeness" of the whole thing, probably.
Actually, this category wasn't all that bad. Despite the huge army that you receive, the author has avoided to fall into the trap that most newbies do, and hasn't made it too easy for the player. There is stern oposition from the CPU's, even though the AI seems to be standard, or very close to it. The resources and forces everybody starts with are reasonably balanced, and the computer players are also fighting each other, so you don't have the disadvantage of fighting everyone else.
Even though the enemy is definitely beatable, the huge forces that each side possesses will make the battles last forever and in the end this leaves its mark on the gameplay.
The ninth (gaia) player was clumsy at best, mostly immobile and I haven't found anything groundbreaking about its inclusion or the way it was performed. Come to think of it, I don't even understand why having a ninth player should be a big deal. 8 is enough for me, and I would think for most people, especially if the 9th is overall useless.
Though there are not so many beta units left, and the map is more user-friendly because of it, the heroes that have no tie whatsoever with the storyline (Lancelot, John Fastolf etc.) don't blend well with the game. You could rename them and give them a purpose though. It takes a lot more time to get into details like this, but this is what can take scenario "to the next level"
MAP DESIGN: 3
The design of the map is naive but shows some promise. The layout is pretty square-ish, every faction getting a more-or-less similar patch of terrain for their base. The fact that every territory has a different kind of map design (dirty, snowy, etc.) was an interesting concept but at the same time very unrealistic and it looked a little out of place, especially on the minimap, because of the rectangular division of these territories. A lot more care is needed in blending them together (snowy and grassy portions, for example). The gaia base to the left of the player's starting point was way too messy, and buildings that had absolutely nothing to do one with the other were scattered there randomly. The other parts of the map actually looked better.
There is some care given to terrain mixing and building placement, so this is clearly a category that the author has a lot of potential to build upon.
Compared to the previous incarnation of the game, some more care went into creating an actual backstory, which is described in the history section. You fight alongside a mage (magi is the plural of this word and I believe you meant only one person). You initially own a hero renamed as the author, after which you are joined by a bunch of historically unrelated heroes, that have been somehow united under the same banner using time travel (!) , and you need to defeat some not very well depicted barbarians, which also fight between each other. While having an actual storyline is a good step forward, the story itself is a little rough on the edges and not very convincing.
The instructions were not very developed, but this was to be expected of this kind of game. There are also hints available, and the scouts section is used to give a more thorough description of the objectives. As a note, in the future you might consider using dynamic objectives in the instructions tab. (making them dissapear or cross themselves out when they are achieved).
Even though my review has retained a lot of criticism, this project is not all bad, there are some pretty promising aspects to it, and it has already improved substantially. I think the main thing that this map could still gain points on is the map design. Try examining other people's designs and learn to mix terrain, place buildings in a less randomly manner, use elevation and gaia objects, etc. It would really improve your score. Also, take into account renaming the units to better suit your purposes, and perhaps developing the story in-game using triggers for dialogues, etc.
To downloaders: if you don't mind a somewhat weird and unlikely plot, you might consider downloading this, as the actual gameplay is not that bad, especially for an unfinished project.
I wish you luck Xylon, keep designing, playing other people's games and improving, as I'm sure you can.
[Edited on 12/23/11 @ 03:02 PM]