Well, things are looking up! Taking the 'single' scenarios in order, from #1, I've finally run into a bit of an improvement. No surprise, I suppose. As time goes on, presumably people will have had more time to learn how to do this scenario writing thing. Anyway, we have a basic start now: instructions, objectives, even hints. Yay! There is no story,but at least there's an attempt at one. No obvious triggers, and I didn't check the scenario directly to make sure of this, but I'm pretty sure there aren't.
A fairly basic but useful addition of an ally and a neutral that do no good whatsoever. Scouting that neutral is a little risky, but there _is_ one way to do it with a minimum of risk. Figure it out yet? It's a tiny puzzle. The setup starts you with units you either can never make, or can only make two ages from now. Plus you start out over your population limit, which always irritates me -- because you have to destroy things if you ever want to build new stuff. Grr! But these are minor drawbacks.
Exploration is a little interesting, and the map is a bit different from anything else I've seen before. The author apparently put his name and a hand gesture on the map in the configuration of some of the forests, which certainly has a long precedent (at least as far back as Warcraft II in the PC realm). Tree and obstacles are many, and the assignment is pretty much a straightforward slugfest. There's really only one way IN, so find it and let the punches fly! If you play carefully like me, you'll bleed your opponent dry without spilling a drop of your own blood. If you rush right in, you'll get chopped to bits. Take your pick!
One peeve I have: there are two forms of tower used in the enemy installation. The more numerous ones have so much effective armor that just about anything does only 1 point of damage to it. This includes those little fellas pushing around the tiny cannos. It's a TOTAL pain to wait several minutes of game time to watch ONE tower go down. On the other hand the bombard towers are at least tractable -- normal levels of damage get done, and they do go down in a reasonable length of time. This is not one I find any interest in playing again, and there was certainly only a passing value in the puzzle of careful attack. Fortunately for me, careful attack was the way to win, because I do pretty poorly in the massive rush mode. It wasn't a _bad_ scenario, mind you! It was a great start.
Perhaps a bit more detail to the map than a handful of roads totally lined with trees so you can't get out, plus a couple of caricatures of cities (not really believable) plus the enemy stronghold, plus 2-3 large open areas with absolutely nothing in them. The flying wolves were kind of cute, but only for about the first 30 seconds.