I hope to make this scenario part of a campaign, somewhat similar in theme to the William Wallace campaign.
||Age of Kings 1.0
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This is a Build and Destroy, Real Time Strategy game modeled after the Viking attacks on the monastery at Lindisfarne. You play defense against the Vikings. You also need to protect your Archbishop and numerous relics. This is a very devout community and there are dozens of priests and three monasteries.
The map is quite attractive and the home island is quite well designed. There are ample resources on the island and a lot of villes ready to work on them to build a strong economy.
Don't play this on Standard Difficulty. If you do, some triggers will fail because the Vikings will not even attempt to kill enemy hostages. They will just stand next to them. Play on at least Moderate.
[Edited on 09/04/05 @ 05:07 PM]
I remember downloading this particular file many years ago, and despite being made way back in '99, I've always enjoyed the concept behind this scenario. It's a simple design; you must lead your small yet largely defenceless island community against the menaces of the Viking raiders who have set up camp on a nearby island. All the while you must ensure the archbishop of your particularly devout community goes unharmed.
PLAYABILITY: The scenario probably shows its age with minimal trigger work and limited replayability due to the scope of the design, however I really enjoyed the defend-the-spot type game play and the nature in which you must build from humble beginnings in order to combat the Viking threat. That said, the scenario is not at all challenging and it really is only a matter of time before you've created a force capable of steam-rolling the Vikings and their longboats, which guard the surrounding ocean. 3
BALANCE: The scenario is initially challenging as a small Viking raiding party lays waste to one of your monasteries, however this can be dispatched quickly by reinforcements from within the island. Afterwards, it's simply a matter of setting your villagers to mine at the generously-supplied resources found scattered across the island, and aging up in order to train some able units. Balance is made worse due to the fact the player begins with several relics, and as the designer has the scenario set to relic victory, well you see where I am going here. You can literally achieve victory less than a minute in-game. The common way of being challenged is largely through having a weaker starting position than your enemy, however this is simply not the case here. I checked the map editor and the enemy begins with considerably less resources. Their small island position also means it's only a matter of time until the wood supply runs out, while the player has an almost limitless amount. Another thing was the lacklustre standard AI, which means although the Vikings have stronger soldiers, they're idling off-shore and seemingly awaiting the transport boats to take them into action. To fix the balance a few things are required and the player can probably make the edits himself. Firstly, as your island is overstocked with resources it is worth deleting some and leaving only a realistic amount, while also giving the Viking encampment a healthy stock up. Lastly, if you can find a challenging AI then the enemy instantly becomes much more difficult to defeat. 2
CREATIVITY: I don't recall too many scenarios featuring the Viking raids, even if only in an historical-fictitious setting. This is complimented well by the creative island design and the off-shore Viking invaders. There is limited trigger work, and a couple scripted events, but everything largely plays out much as it would in any build-and-destroy game. The island is definitely the best part of this scenario and actually looks quite good, however that seems to be where the creativity ends. 2
MAP DESIGN: The small island community surrounded by the ocean is well designed for its age, and looks good on the mini-map. While much of the design is comparable to random map quality, I feel the terrain mixing of dirt 2 and 3 in large areas is very effective. It seems to give the island a desolate and rocky appearance. The building placement is also done with some thought, and looks like a Dark Age dwelling. However, copious amounts of resources is an eye-sore and an underwhelming supply of fish in an otherwise flat ocean looks ugly. 3-
STORY/INSTRUCTIONS: The author has provided a short background summary to the scenario, which takes place sometime after the terrible Viking raid on Lindisfarne. This is probably all that's needed here, while there are some instructions. 3
CONCLUSION: Despite its age and obvious simplicity, 'Viking' provides a creative and fun attempt at defend-the-spot. It is a much better scenario after some minor tweaks in the editor.
In a sentence - Simplistic and fun.
In closing - Worth the download.
[Edited on 03/08/20 @ 08:14 PM]