||Age of Kings
Kevin, An Unlikely Hero by John Graham
Northern England, a tranquil place of rolling hills and gentle valleys. Our hero, Kevin, is tending the flock on a hill above his village.
As he stands there thinking impure thoughts about Tracey (the village beauty), a young boy, Arnold, rushes up to him.
"Kev, the village is being attacked by huge men with horned helmets, what are we going to do ?"
"Do ?" says Kevin, " I know what I am going to do, I'm a lover not a fighter, I'm off !"
With those cowardly words ringing in his ears the young boy rushes back to the village to pitch his 100 pounds against the strapping 210 pounds of Viking muscle.
"Bloody idiot" thinks Kevin, and leaving his sheep he runs off as far from the village as he can manage.
And here our epic tale of love, betrayal, heroism and downright stupidity begins........ or to be more blunt, a few battles whilst wandering around a vast amusement park !
RPG/Puzzle/Build & Destroy/Comedy.
Please,please,please read the Hints before you start, otherwise the game will appear not to be working.
If you go everywhere you should have visited :- The Zoo, The Gypsy, The Joust, The Ice Rink, The Dolphin Show, The Human Cannonball, The Game of Chance, The Sea-Battle, The Dating Agency, The Magic Carpets, The House of Pain, The Mini-Mart and the Toilet.
There is a walk-through (if you need one), just drop me an e-mail.
I really hope you enjoy this, it took quite a while to get right ! No doubt lots of people will claim to "have done that trick first" (you know who you are ! and quite frankly, who cares), but I think some may be original, who knows ?
A review (good or bad) at AOK Heaven would be really appreciated or an email to :
Many thanks to The Great Alexander for beta-testing.
Thanks to Zanzard Lothar for his Immobile Units ai.
Thanks to my wife for the endless cups of coffee to keep me awake to finish it.
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Dear surfer, do you like to laugh, to hear jokes? Do you enjoy humour? Do you like to play Age of Kings? If you answered 'yes' to all the above questions, you must download "Kevin, the Unlikely Hero". That's right, it's a neccesity. Your CPU is begging for it. And once you've played it, you'll realise you were too.
The playability was okay. There were some times which you just wait for your troops to get to the destination, but all the great jokes and amusing places to see more than make up for it.
All the cool places to visit showed very good creativity and, of course, a good sense of humour. Good gags, good story. Who would've ever thought to make the dating agency, the human cannonball, the rather unique jousters and all the other attractions?
The balance is not much of an issue in this scenario, as the aim is not really to defeat an enemy, but rather enjoy the scenario and get the girl. Despite that, the balance was quite fine, hence the 3.
I was a bit bored by the map. It's a gigantic oak forest with some roads in the middle... snoooze. The huge quantity of trees slowed the scenario down a bit.
The designer could've done with a map smaller than gigantic. It's not that there are totally unused spots, it's just that the distances between them are a tad longer than I would of liked it.
Yet, on a very lighter note, you can always expect a cool feature down the road. There's not a boring moment, and if there is, then it is very brief indeed.
The story/instructions is the strong point of this scenario. The story, allthough can turn absurd at times, is hilarious and quite realistic. I mean, how come all the soldiers in AoK are so keen on dying in battle? Weren't there at least some more reasonable people who wanted to lead a (gasp) peaceful life?
I liked how the designer took things humourously. British humour at its best! Kind of like the movie "Life of Brian". It's about time someone made a less-than-serious scenario.
Definately download this one if you would like to enjoy some laughs!
The intro sentence of Kevin, the Unlikely Hero (KtUH) reads "And here our epic tale of love, betrayal, heroism and downright stupidity begins........ or to be more blunt, a few battles whilst wandering around a vast amusement park!" That about sums up this delightful campaign. I laughed myself silly while playing it, the rigged jousting match, the irate Bible Bashers, the "safe" skating rink, the House of Torture, the magic carpet seller, the fortune-teller who accuses Kevin of being homosexual, the Myopic Warriors, and the overweight innkeeper being among my favourites. This campaign revolves around the fictional tale of Kevin the shepherd, who is tending his sheep when a raiding party of Vikings attacks his village. Being a cowardly type, Kevin flees from the destruction, and arrives at the hut of the infamous Mad Monk. The Mad Monk places an enchantment on Kevin, so that when he faces danger he will not run away, but turn into CAPTAIN Y-FRONTS, the legendary hero. From there, Kevin journeys forth to destroy the Vikings, rescue the love of his life Tracy, and play a few games in the newfound K-Mart Amusement and Warfare Facility. JG is the John Cleese of scenario designing, you can't match British comedy. It's a shame there arn't more comedy scenarios like this around. You start off when a cutscene showing Kevin's encounter with the Mad Monk ends, and you must wander around the map looking for help. The scenario is mainly RPS, but with some B&D when Kevin's friend Arnold decides to rebuild the ruined village. I had great fun playing the various games, and completing the objectives. The only complaint I have is the map: it is too big. To meet the simple requirements of KtUH, you'd think a medium map would be best, but instead I find myself playing on a giant map. It sometimes takes ages walking from place to place, especially since you normally criss-cross the map several times during the course of the game, completing various objectives. But other then that, excellent. KtUH is now a classic campaign, and remembered as one of the first works that introduced humour to the blacksmith. +4
This campaign uses custom scripted AIs that are difficulty-sensitive, so it is quite tough of moderate and hard. The AI controls the Baddies, the Bible Bashers, and the Vikings, and makes them train units and attack your village. It is easy to get so wrapped up in helping Kevin complete his various quests that you neglect your village, and get attacked. But the balance still isn't as good as it could have been. Your enemies only train feudal-age units, so it's very easy to defeat the attacks by just building walls and towers. If the AI researched some upgrades, it would really do wonders. 4
Comedy scenarios are few and far between. There are imaginative ideas everywhere, from the magic carpet trick to the trained dolphins. KtUH makes use of the "point and click" method discovered by TDS, and takes it one further. You can now select every object, and have it say something. Click the Bible Bashers relic, for instance, and it says "You don't have a monk to pick me up, so sod off." Click the barracks in the Baddies' town, and it says "I wish you'd destroy this outpost next to me. Moan, moan, moan, all day, he's getting right on my nerves." Very nice touch. 5
Map design is KtUH's only real weak point. The map is far too big, as I've already said, and it also is pretty bland. Mainly just forest with paths of grass pasted through it, and flower beds covering the whole thing. The map is something of a labyrinth, and there are many confusing dead-ends. I think the designer made a bit too much use of gaia, as the whole map is liberally covered with flowers. It's a bit of a strain on the eyes. -3
The storyline for KtUH is good, and it's wickedly funny. It also explores how a coward would react in a dangerous situation -- how is it that in most AoK campaigns the main character is always willing to give his life? There are lots of spelling and grammar mistakes, sometimes the text is difficult to read. (I also think that it's lucky that AoK campaigns don't get classified, because the frequence coarse language and sexual references mean that this one would definately get slapped with an MA) 5
KtUH is a great campaign by one of the masters at comedy. Definately worth downloading.
-Map isn't as good as it could have been
-Spelling was rather bad
-A bit too easy
EDITED REVIEW OF KEVIN THE UNLIKELY HERO
The scenario is a mix of comedy, RPG and B&D. Kevin, the Unlikely Hero was the Blacksmith Feature on May 4, 2001 and became runner up for the most humorous scenario on the 2nd Orion Awards. The events take place in northern England; you play Kevin a shepherd, more a lover than a fighter, in search for the village beauty Tracey during the Viking raids of the British isles.
PLAYABILITY: This is a very entertaining scenario, you will not regret a minute, laugh, enjoy the humour and jokes. You will be busy fighting, build up defences, dig gold and stone and "always look on the bright side of life" walking the amusement park. At the scenarios very end, you miss a 'love scene' with a short dialogue and the victory signal. 4+
BALANCE: The scenario plays good on hard; it includes custom-made AI files for the enemy players to spice the scenario while you are wandering around a vast amusement park. The scenario is reasonably hard, not too tough to be disturbed at a level where you miss all the funny places. The enemy attacks your village by land and sea, so build some defence structures. With a good strategy, you can follow your objectives, avoid dislocating troops, and have fun, the perfect balance for this RPG type comedy. 5
CREATIVITY: One of the most creative scenarios at the blacksmith, a new genre, unique in its style, nothing comparable before or after, British humour at its best like the Dating Agency, the House of Pain, the Gypsy, the Zoo, the Joust and the Dolphin Show. Good use of triggers for the Human Cannonball, the Ice Rink and the Game of Chance, the myopic warriors are hilarious and who would have thought that heroes use toilets. I would not have been surprised if Kevin would admit that his real name is Eric Idle or John Cleese in that Monty Python like surrounding. 5+
MAP DESIGN: The scenario's weakness, a huge oak forest done with a big brush, which is not bad by itself as it fills the spots between the places of interest. A detailed design would be better and the village and town design is not special. The landscape is partly hilly, overall too green lacking terrain mix, only slightly better than a random map. 4-
STORY/INSTRUCTIONS: The bmp brings you right into the funny story; Kevin sure needs that little spongy ball at Mickey's Mini Mart. The instructions are always clear and easy to follow. The hints are valuable and the story very good, the priest had to do some AE magic to convince our hero to fight. The technical lay out of the map supported the game play. You follow the road; amusing places are marked with flags. 5
OVERALL: Kevin, the Unlikely Hero is an epic tale of love, betrayal, heroism and downright stupidity or the real version, a few battles whilst wandering around a vast amusement park.
SUGGESTIONS: In trigger "vikings" effect 2 creates the hero in another location, while effect 6 removes the heroes at both locations. In effect 2, click 'go to area', create a new identical effect and delete effect 2 or set as object Aethelfirth in effect 6, he is in the north corner of the map. If you do not have the jg_still.ai/per files in your folder, AI ID 85 Immobile Units AI GOLD by Zanzard Lothar will work. Set the personality of players 3 and 5 to Immobile Units AI GOLD and save as Kevin, the Unlikely Hero v1.1.
OBSERVATION: Effects fire delayed in the sequence they are created (by their number), not the sequence they are listed in a trigger. When you save a scenario, the corresponding AI is saved in the .scn file that is why the original version plays all right for players 3 and 5 without the jg_still.ai/per in your folder. The AI is no longer in the .scn file when you save the file again, you can only save information that is present the moment you save. For that reason, you have to replace the missing AI files with Immobile Units Gold when you edit. Thanks go to Berserker Jerker for his help to find the right AI to replace the missing jg_still.ai/per. The above is an edit of my original review posted on 2003-12-08.
IN CLOSING: Download one of the most original scenarios of the blacksmith.