|The Downward Spiral
Whew! What an adventure! This is a pretty good scenario, indeed. The scenario has a few strong points, and a few weak points. But quite honestly, after playing this scenario it is obvious we have the same tastes in scenarios.
First, the playability of this scenario is very pleasing. To tell you the truth, I played this scenario twice because I liked it so much. There was a nice mixture of calm and exciting RPG elements implemented into the scenario. Playability was one of the scenario's strong points. However, the constant walking around got a bit boring after a while. For example, finding the hammer to repair the bridge. Walking through the forest was a bit boring. Perhaps a few wolves should have been placed there.
Second, creativity was average. The most creative thing I liked was the chase scene. Running from the archers and knights was successfully pulled off. Many scenarios have attempted to use a chase scene, but never pulled it off. Yours was just right. It wasn't easy at all, yet still possible to succeed. I liked how you implemented the "click talk" trick into the scenario. The task to repair the bridge was a good idea. I noticed a few "spells" in the scenario also. I enjoyed Joan's "Fire" spell, and the Water sage's "Death" spell was creative also. However, spells and the "click-talk" trick aren't very original. I've seen them in many other scenarios. Perhaps try thinking of new trigger tricks to make some nice new "spell" effects. To wrap this subject up, you did a pretty good job maintaining a creative atmosphere for the scenario, but not perfect.
Third, the Balance of the scenario was a bit off. At the start of the scenario when you depart from Pandora, you encounter a small patrol of Legion soldiers. It is impossible to win this battle, and if you attempt to run your heroes lose about half of their hit points. This battle should have been toned down a bit. If you didn't get out of there just right, your heroes can perish easily. Other then that, the balance was fair.
Fourth, the Map Design was average. I'd give it a 3 or 4 on a scale from 1-5. It was way above average, but could use a few pointers. I liked how you used the shallow waters inside both Pandora and the Water Temple. It displays a calm, peaceful, and tranquil mood to the scenario. However, there were a few ways the map work could have been improved. For example, the forest to find the hammer was somewhat... "bland." There were NO elevation changes. And most of the ground was just grass. Perhaps attempt to implement more dirt, varieties of trees, and most of all more elevation changes into your map. That will help the map work a lot.
Fifth, the Story/Instructions were nothing less then perfect. The plot itself is simply amazing. I can't wait to play the next scenario. For instance, you start out being informed of a land called "the Land of Gaia" which nobody knows anything about. Nobody in the town of Pandora knows either. You journey on to discover you have some competition to find the Land of Gaia (I don't want to speak of any spoilers here) and the scenario ends. I'm dying to see what happens next. The cliffhanger creates a good introduction to the campaign. You discover a little background information, the main "bad guy" and "good guy," find out the primary task, and leaves a few questions unanswered...
In conclusion, this is an above average scenario. It's strange... the scenario did remind me of "The Secret of Mana." However, it could use some work, but I'm sure the final product will improve greatly compared to this teaser. Besides, it IS only a teaser. I didn't expect a 5.0 map out of a teaser. If you follow the constructive criticism mentioned above, I'm sure this campaign could become a true masterpiece! Good luck and keep up the excellent work!