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Defence at Lorgan's Watch
Posted on 04/27/16 @ 08:28 AM (updated 10/09/16
"Get on with it yer mongrels, the enemy is at our doorstep. To your posts!"
Lorgan's Watch has stood guard over Hanern's eastern approaches for centuries. This old fort has long proven itself a bulwark against enemy aggression through many hard wars, but stretched supply lines and further troubles abroad have left it neglected and in disrepair. Indeed there is little anything else in these remote parts save for a meagre garrison of poorly-supplied militia.
For Captain Baldur, all that is left on his mind is counting down the days until he can return home where his wife and a warm hearth awaits. The battles of the Old War are now a children's bedtime story of the past, and what was once a thriving land has given way to the decaying chill of winter. Surely no one would be foolish enough to attack during these cold months, would they?
This is my entry to the 2016 Defend-the-Spot contest with features including:
- Gloomy winter atmosphere
- Gripping defend-the-spot style action, including fixed-force and build-&-destroy game play
- Highly-detailed and atmospheric map design
- Almost 70 custom sounds
- Over 800 triggers
- Difficulty-level-dynamic game play
- Multiple endings: victory or death awaits you. How will Baldur and his men be remembered?
I hope you enjoy this project!
*** Winner of the 2016 Defend-the-Spot Contest ***
*** This campaign received the award BEST STORY and BEST SCORE in the Game of the Year Awards of 2016 ***
Settings: Speed: Normal
Resolution: 1024 x 768
This file requires only the base game in the Conquerors to function. It is not compatible with HD.
|Author||Reviews ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )|
Defence at Lorgan's Watch is Mash's entry to the 2016 Defend the Spot Competition, and a worthy winner of the first place prize.
A masterpiece of the DTS genre, Defence at Lorgan's Watch is another manifestation of Mash's brilliance in this sphere of gameplay. Faced with an overwhelming enemy force, the player is tasked with the defense of Lorgan's Keep, a small and remote border fortress, against seemingly impossible odds. An initial cutscene establishes suitable context for the player while allowing them the chance to learn the lay of the land before thrusting them into the action. The cinematic portions interspersed throughout the scenario are remarkably smooth, and the player is guaranteed about 45 minutes worth of continuous fun as they defend their fortress from continuous and varied enemy assaults while completing sidequests and sneakily gathering resources and purchasing upgrades. Top-notch balance, map design, and narrative elements contribute in a positive manner to the playability, and the scenario is almost entirely devoid of bugs. One concern is that the AI, having demolished the entrance of the main gatehouse, generally focuses their forces entirely on that region and not the gate across the causeway (although the designer has implemented certain triggered elements in an attempt to overcome this issue).
Another strong point of the scenario, the balance represents either hours of meticulous testing or a high degree of natural affinity for DTS balancing (or both). While defending the fortress, the player is assailed with numerous companies of enemy troops and given barely enough assets to sustain the defenses and hold the line. Again and again, certain events force the player to react quickly and decisively - the arrival of siege weapons necessitates the repurposing of defensive forces or even a daring sally beyond the walls, and enemy leaders and their retinues present deadly threats that demand immediate attention. I was particularly impressed with the choices of the designer in what was made available to the player - from upgrades to units and buildings, as well as precious weaponry and scarce resources. While the player will inevitably desire to train numerous ranged units to provide firepower from behind the walls, the designer has assured through limited resources and the copious presence of proper counter units that ranged unit abuse is not possible, and the player is thus forced to make key choices and invest in a diverse army in order to repel the enemy assault. Reinforcements and resources arrived at the perfect moments, and the general sense was quite realistic - so much that I felt myself reminded of my reading of various accounts of late antique and early medieval siege, and impressed with the ability of the author to translate the siege of a fortress so realistically to the AoK engine.
In this scenario, the designer makes excellent use of a combination of well-established DTS concepts (many of which, to be fair, he has previously invented!) and creative elements. The map design in particular absolutely emanated creativity, and the combination of DTS, FF, and RPS elements involved in the defense was a boon to the gameplay.
Map Design: 5
Perhaps the highlight of the scenario, the map design in this entry is so gorgeous that it is actually borderline distracting. The visual allure of an expertly designed fortress, a stunning and novel take on wintry forests and the open terrain beside them, interspersed with small abandoned settlements and ruins, rocks, and frozen bodies of water endlessly dazzled the player. Another great strength of the design was how flawlessly it complimented the gameplay while remaining organic and realistic - I would go as far as to say that it contributed significantly to the gameplay experience. Also remarkable was the sheer amount of creativity involved in the design and the gameplay/objectives that it suited - everything had a purpose, and nothing seemed remotely monotonous. Overall the author has created something quite special, and certainly worth a top score.
The narrative sphere of the entry, as per Mash's MO, was a particularly exemplary aspect, and it is always welcoming to feel like the story was conveyed so well that you feel as if you can identify with and step into the shoes of a group of 2d sprites! Mash's trademark dark and ominous atmosphere is conveyed in top form, and between the pregame writeup, the cinematic portions, and the gameplay itself, the player is treated to a quite wholesome effort, something in which nearly 60(!) sound files prove quite contributory. The instructions are informative but not overbearing, and are thus adequate and quite helpful.
In closing, this is an imperative addition to your custom campaign folder if you're looking for a healthy dose of top-notch DTS fun.
Defence at Lorgan's Watch,the winners of DTS 2016 by mashek.
I enjoyed this scenario, it's different playability from"Blood of the Bear". it's mix B&D and FF,it has good balance.
when first time I play this I always frustated, it's very difficult you only Have 50 men to defend from 800 hundred enemy or more. but I know it's not just FF but we must use strategies like build tower,repair siege weapon, I never think that before. you must smart and patient when playing this scenario.
Mashek was like to design snowy scenario, snowy with siege theme map and fortress. his creative to make siege gameplay, It's like real siege situation dark atmo, music and enemy with map theme. I still can't believe you create this scenario without userpatch 1.4
Map Design: 5
like I mention above using brown trees and snowy with good eyecandy fortress and some of ruins.
the story was connected with second Kretharn war. mashek story always tell about massive army attack the poor country killing everyone in their path. then siege in the fortress. then the massive army defeated. but I like that story. it's very great.
good job mash. good luck on your main project now.
Defence at Lorgan's Watch is an action-packed scenario with a truly immersive atmosphere, which it owes to its fantastic map design and clever use of music and sound effects. You truly get the feeling of being stranded in the midst of winter, fighting against impossible odds and somehow coming out victorious. The scenario is constantly challening, but ever so rewarding once you figure out a strategy that works. I had to replay it multiple times to survive to the end, but it was very rewarding to finally see Morgen off and win the day. This is DTS and atmospheric storytelling at its finest.
While a bit on the hard side, even on standard and moderate difficulty, the scenario never gets so hard that it is frustrating. It really demands that you figure out the best strategy possible and stick to it. Once you do that, the game still manages to strike a balance where it is just hard enough that you can win by playing smart, but not so easy that you can just lean back and let things play out. It is a true challenge and whenever you do fail you can always track it back to a fault in your strategy, rather than some arbitrary rise in difficulty thrown at you by the trigger systems. Perhaps it could be made easier on the lowest difficulty, but it is still a very well-balanced challenge throughout.
The scenario takes a bunch of creative ideas and executes them all very well. High points include the strategic layout of the map as well as its chilling beauty, the limitations on the player that force you to manage every unit and every resource with great care and, perhaps most of all, the fantastic and incredibly immersive atmosphere created by the map design and well-orchestrated music and sound effects; for one thing, the increasing strength of the horns leading up to an attack was truly bone-chilling!
MAP DESIGN: 5
As mentioned already, the map is stunning. Mashek is well known for his wintery landscapes and he may just have outdone himself here. This is one of the most atmospheric designs I can recall ever playing and it would still have been so with all the sound turned off. From the late autumn forests to the shabby, derelict fortress, every square of the map looks crafted, as if nothing was left "just good enough" but improved to perfection.
STORY & INSTRUCTIONS: 5
The story ties in with Mashek's Kretharn War series and works really well as a spin-off. The characters, while swiftly introduced, are quickly made to feel real and one can really sense their dread and steadfastness in the face of overwhelming odds. The instructions are also very clear, and you never find yourself lost.
IN CONCLUSION: A terrific scenario, wonderfully atmospheric and challening. Well worth downloading!