Posted on 05/07/02 @ 12:00 AM (updated 12/18/02
||Role Playing Strategy
This map has been updated! Thanks to some helpful feedback, I've included some additional hints for the puzzle. The zip to download is AOCKG-01.zip.
In this map, our hero, Thodo (a character from an earlier campaign), wants to marry the fairest of the King's three daughters. In order to marry her, though, he must first run through the King's garden, which is a giant, walled-in maze. A puzzle halfway through the garden makes the map even more challenging, as the entire event is timed (you can actually see the "timer" winding down).
Depending upon how quickly you finish the map, you can earn one of up to four unique endings, 3 victory (one for each of the three daughters--you only get to marry the hottie if you finish the maze quickly) and one loss (if you don't finish at all).
I'd love to hear feedback from you. Hope you enjoy it!
|Author||Reviews ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )|
The King's Garden is an uncomplicated, yet challenging race through a maze with an enjoyable and funny story.
I enjoyed playing this maze game very much. My degree of enjoyment could be considered higher than one might expect in solving a single maze. I experienced no bugs, and minimal player frustration, due to the anti cheat feature, that was necessary to maintain balance. For 'Playability' I relied on my degree of enjoyment while playing, and give the score of 4.
I believe there was a lot of attention given to balance in this maze game. For balance I had to separate the uncomplicated nature of a single maze, from that which could be considered easy. I also factored in what I believe my skill level to be in regard to maze solving, and AoK in general. In doing so I arrived at a 4 for good game Balance.
I considered this scenario game to be very creative. The concept design is simple by the nature of it's premise the maze, but the designer was able to present the challenge in a very comical game plot. The designer was able to extract the humor of the games plot/goal, and delivered it well, as the game unfolded. The timer feature devised as a race against the King's fastest horse, was a fantastic plot element, and the four different outcomes of three victories and one defeat were all very entertaining. For creativity, I had to question the merit of such an elemental game plot/goal. I also must consider the merits of what was included to enhance the game plot/goal. The answer is that I do think there is merit to a scenario with a simple and uncomplicated premise. However, I think a designer that bases a scenario on such a stark goal, should strive to enhance his game plot/goal a little more. Using the same things I found in 'The Kings Garden,' but to include more of the creative enhancements.
Not wanting to punish this design for simplicity, and rewarding it's creativity overall, I give a 4 for Creativity.
The map design is a maze made up of fortified walls and gates with few outstanding features. I believe the monotony created was intended to disorient and provide confusion that after all is the nature of a good maze. However, I do believe this confusion could have been achieved in a more eye dazzling design. The guidelines are specific here, so a solid 4 is due.
The story and instructions are one of the strengths of this scenario. It is well written, funny, and easy to follow. I was impressed by this short and comic story plot that was woven into this game to solve a maze. Although the scenario story was not 'side busting' hilarious, it was feel good funny, and did raise a chuckle and put a smile on my face. This was an excellent feature of the scenario and I give a score of 5.
This is a very good scenario overall, as it provides the enjoyment of a race to solve a maze within and through a perfectly pleasing, and funny short story. In your scores I have tried to reflect what I believe to be a fantastic design effort. The uncomplicated nature of the game, and relative game play, proved unique to my play experience. Overall this unique experience was reflected in the scores as positive.
I like mazes, and think they are interesting and entertaining to solve. This maze provides this, along with the added entertainment features of an Age of Kings scenario. So if you like mazes as I do, then I highly recommend you download and play 'The Kings Garden.'
The Kings Garden, by zamond, is a puzzle/maze scenario in which the player must find his way through an extensive maze. The catch is, the faster the player is able to complete the puzzle, the better the reward.
The reward: The hand of one of the daughters of the King, in marriage.
Replay value of this scenario is limited to fair. The author has managed to pull together a nice and occasionally comic story together well with the theme of a maze, but I felt the scenario simply lacked a little bit too much for it to be truly enjoyable. There were also a couple of ways to finish the scenario by either skipping most of the maze by deleting walls controlled by the player, or by locking a gate in the King's Rider's path, hence stopping the timer and allowing the player to complete the game easily. Because of these factors I have rated the game playability at 3.
This game was balanced very well. While the first few times can be confusing and on some occasions frustrating, once you work out the path the game gradually becomes easier. The emphasis then comes onto the player to finish the maze quicker, while also trying to remember those paths which were taken previously. Disorientation is always a constant threat, and you will do well to remember your path the second time through. If you get stuck somewhere in the maze and the timer runs out, be prepared to defend yourself as you are deemed unworthy in the eyes of the king and doomed to death. If you do get lost, the author has thoughtfully included a solution to the maze as well. While this game will not always be a test of your fighting skills, it will still be a test of your concentration and memory. 5
With some clever thought, the author has been able to convey the idea of a maze in an innovative manner, and one that complements the story well. The author has implemented some original ideas - like solving the maze before the King's Rider passes around the outside 4 times and a few other simple puzzles - well alongside the great design of the maze itself. Gates were cleverly used with triggers so that the player could not simply click on the end and let Genie do it's stuff. I rate the creativity of this scenario 4.
MAP DESIGN: 4
The map design of this maze scenario can be considered good. There are many dead ends and alternative routes, though only the one leads through and out of the maze. However, to some, the map design may leave a little to be desired. Make no mistake, the author has put considerable thought into the layout of the walls (literally) that make up the maze, however I felt that there could have been some extra effort put in to terrain mixing. For instance adding a few extra trees or GAIA objects to make the maze feel a little bit more 'alive' I think would not go astray, and perhaps even a few little streams could have been used to the same effect as dead ends.
However as Anastasia has said - and with which I concur - the otherwise bland map does tend to add to the difficulty of the scenario, since it makes it difficult to recall which sections have been traversed and which have not, since they appear much the same. Therefore considering all of these thoughts, I rate the Map Design as a 4.
This maze scenario comes complete with a short, but entertaining and occasionally comical story, the outcome of which will depend on your ability to navigate the maze complex. The author has clear instructions on what to do and how to complete the scenario. The story may have been developed a little further with some background on the characters, but it does very well as it is. Therefore I rate this as a 4. Good work.
While I can see why this scenario may not be everyone's cup of tea, nevertheless I found it entertaining and at some points a nice challenge. Perhaps with the terrain enhanced a little and even a few extra puzzles or difficulties this scenario could have been even better.
I would also recommend that the outside walls - which are controlled by the player - be altered to be controlled by one of the computer players. This would remove the ability of the player to either delete these walls or lock the gates, both of which have the potential to remove some of the challenge for the player.
With it's simple story and creative puzzles this scenario is excellent for a spot of light entertainment. Good Work!
IN CLOSING: A recommended download for a new perspective of maze puzzles.
[Edited on 02/06/07 @ 05:03 AM]
'The King's Garden' is a puzzle maze style RPG, in which you actually have to find your way out of a maze.
The game is extremely enjoyable.The maze was extremely well implemented by the use of triggered gates so that one would actually have to go all the way rather than simply click the destination and expect the unit to get there. The timing was also just right. The puzzle in the middle was good and the author also included a solution in case it was very difficult.The only problem is that there are player controlled walls/gates which can be misused.
There is no actual fighting here, the difficulty level is dependent on your maze solving ability. I felt that the puzzle was just right. There is only one way which is correct, which you can find from the mini map (assuming you play under all visible, which the author recommends). Initially I tried taking random paths, but ended up getting nowhere so then I figured out the whole path from beginning to end and followed it (still getting lost in a couple of places) and ended up with my character marrying the third daughter. The second time I played it, I did lose my way somewhere but I was able to complete it just in the nick of time for the first daughter.
Very creative theme, the implementation of the maze and the timer etc. was very good. The puzzle in the centre of the maze was good and the entire plot was simple, entertaining and original.
Map Design: 4
The map was a bit plain, but it was necessary so that the player would be confused as to where to go. This adds to the difficulty thus the map serves it's purpose. However the non maze parts esp. the garden and the castle should have been better done.
There is a good and comical story about the maze and occasional humour. There are clear instructions so that the player is never confused. The endings are amusing and entertaining.
A very good maze and a recommnded download.