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Posted on 10/26/01 @ 12:00 AM (updated 10/27/01
||Build and Destroy
By Matei of Woad Creations
Your land has known the sounds, smells, sights, and pains of warfare for ages. The forests are full of paths through which warriors have trodden, the vilagers live in fear, and wolves and outlaws pray on innocents. Now, at last, you have gathered all your allies together. The allied tribes forget their quarrels to face the common enemy, another group of allied tribes. You pick up your spears and prepare for war. Between you and your foes stands only one thing - the Wall. This long barrier of rock has stood there for centuries, and continues to do so. It divides the countryside into two parts - ally land and enemy land. It is impassible, except for the several small gates. Nobody knows how it got there, and it is probably the work of giants or gods. But some speak of a time when the whole land was ruled by men from the south, who fought in metal armour, wore during peacetime snow-white togas, and dwelt in palaces of marble. Apparently one day, one of these men, a general named Hadrian, decided to put down the Wall and divide the land into two halves: the prosperous South and the barbaric North. The ruins of these southern people still dot the countryside. Alas, if there ever was prosperity, it is now gone, and both sides are equally barbaric. Even the wall has crumbled, yet it still poses an obstacle through which no battering ram can break. It is your ally and your enemy - your greatest defence and your greatest obstacle in the battle that is to come. Yet perhaps, if you manage to win this battle and destroy your enemies, your civilization can reach the glory of Hadrian and his people again!
- Land map with sparse forests through which units can easily walk.
- Each team starts on one side of the Wall. This structure, which has crumbled a bit now but is still impassible and indestructible, divides the map into one side for each team. It is shown in a dark yellow-green on the minimap.
- There are four seasons (summer, fall, winter, spring), each with its own stunningly beautiful terrain and eyecandy: realistic mixed forests, Roman ruins, and beautiful terrain blending!
- Resources are about normal, with the extra stone and gold near the wall from remains of Roman towns and structures. The type of food you get varies randomly each game however (for example, there are no berries in winter).
- In addition to wolves, you may face outlaws (represented by grey archers); these are weaker than wolves but have range and tend to be in groups. Villagers can kill them pretty easily if they are not double-teamed, and they are weak vs scouts.
- In regicide you get only a king and a keep in addition to starting units, to allow earlier victories.
- You can start with extra units, which change the gameplay a bit from the boring old standard (for example, you can have two woad raiders for earlier rushes, a battering ram to stop FLUSHes, extra vils and houses, a monk, etc).
- Fun, unique gameplay!
Gameplay is quite different from a normal RM because of the wall. The gates in the wall are very important to hold. They can allow access to enemy resources and buildings, as well as insure your own defence. Early rushes are a bit like Black Forest in that you have to sneak through the gates before they're palisaded, but they are harder to do since a whole team shares one side of the wall; the extra starting units can help though. Later in the game, the wall is also important for the gold and stone arount it. Archers and siege units are often used to shoot accross it, while the gates are sites of constant battles. Once you get into enemy land, it's hard for them to defend, because the forests are sparse so you can raid from any direction. This means that you must be on the lookout for forward bases, or else.
The computer AI plays well on this map.
This map was made by Matei of Woad Creations, and playtested by Shiva, D00D, Antichrist, and many other Woad members. If you liked this map, please review it or let us know by putting a player comment. To all you RMS people, note that this script was done using a new (and better in my opinion) technique for multiple map locations.
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Hadrian's Wall is a very interesting map, making use of 'rocks' placed on the map in a line between teams to simulate a broken down wall. There are small gaps in the wall, so the map plays a lot like the Highlands map but with no naval units possible and no fishing. This map is quite fun to play, and should be tried by everyone wanting a different map and game.
THEME: ( 5 ) The author makes it quite evident, when I look at the script, theat he knows how to script rms very well. He uses a special type of coding that few other authors have learned to place his randomized terrains and objects, and has no errors in his use of them. The map is quite playable and unique (I have seen only a few other maps use 'rocks' as walls, and none exactly as this one has). He has included 4 different 'seasons' for some variation in the appearance of the map. And he has done a nice writeup to give the feel for the map. I had some problems with certain objects and terrains used, but will count those in apparance below.
VISUAL APPEARANCE: ( 3 ) This is the one area that I take exception with the author's work. There some very nice touches here. such as the winter theme starting out with some dying wolves across the map (they might be decomposed before you see them, though - try on all visible to get a view of them). However since the author has described this very vividly as northern Britain, I find it disconcerting to have bamboo in the forests and turkeys roaming the fields. I find it odd to have patches of desert sand in the summer theme (I think) while northern Britain is likely to have sand only on the beach. Wild horses are not native to Britain and there has never historically been herds to round up there. I did not like the plethora of randomly placed signposts scattered about the map on some seasonal patterns, as many as 3 in one screen at a time (how many signposts to Londinium or Bath did the Romans put up, anyway?). I guess what I am trying to say is that it is nonsense to place articles randomly across a map just for the sake of placing something, for the sake of 'scenery'. I know the author comes from a scenario design background, and in scenarios it is possible to precisely place items for effect, but some of these things look a bit out of place here. Also in regard to appearance, in one of the patterns with snow there are bright green plants sticking up all over, unrealistic looking, and there are snow covered pines mixed with green pines in a way that looks unrealistic. I hope that I am not sounding too critical, because this map has a lot of good points, but I want to be clear as to why I found fault with this part of the map script. The fact that the author used 4 random terrain patterns alone makes this better than most scripts. I also liked the different feel for the forest - multiple tiny scattered clumps.
GAMEPLAY: ( 5 ) This is a 'weak' 5, but the good points outweighed the bad here. My biggest complaint in the gameplay aspect is that the author changed the relic placement without advertising it, which can upset plans for a relic victory if a player has no clue that instead of the standard 5 relics there is one relic per player. I personally do not like maps with the random selection of extra buildings and/or units like this one, but in this case they did not negatively affect gameplay much. I really think that putting Castle Age units like Woad Raiders or Battering Rams in a Dark Age start can be a little unbalanced. However, the map plays vey well and is a fun variant. The random selection of food and mineral resources can be fun, as it is balanced and equal for all players. Playing with this forest pattern is tricky, as lumbering operations should be relocated frequently to maximize productivity of lumberjacks, but I enjoy such a challange. There are some "OUTLW" units placed on the map - weak archer units that were not included in the scenario editor but left in for us to discover, I believe. These have a faulty AI and only attack villagers, not military units.
This map should not be played on a size too small for the number of players, as the wall, forests and ruins scattered about the map limit buildable area. The AI does OK on this map, but I never saw the AI try to wall off at the wall gaps as a human instinctively would.
A couple of more notes - the wall gaps or 'gates' vary in size with the number of players - easier to wall off with 1-4 players than 8. This map worked well for a 4 player FFA and an 8 player-4 team setup also, with the wall placing correctly in each case between teams.
The author states in his conclusion that he used a 'new' method of scripting for multiple map locations, or as I prefer to call it, terrain patterns. However, this map was released in October of 2001, and vauxhall and I had developed this method of map scripting in early 2001 (first example of using this in scripting was MFO@Nottingham), using it in many of the MFO maps for varied terrain and unit patterns. Look at MFO@Central Sea for a good, simple example.
Anyway, this is a fine map and should be tried by all!
This was by far one of my favorite random maps ever. So creative, it could have been a campaign, but it is completely a random map. I love the historic reference and the setting. A barbaric north (symbolizing the Scots and other Celts that the Romans built the wall to keep out) and the decently-civilized south (symbolizing the Roman side)
Visual Appeal: 5
The gaia rocks and the bandits were amazing ideas! Also different foliage and ruins made great eye-candy.
Very playable for the kind of map it is. Gaps in the rocks should be walled off at all costs. Gold and stone were set in the ruins to make it look like salvaging. Altogether a great map.
I highly recommend this map.
Hadrian’s Wall is a very clever theme. It is very unique and is also the first Random map which uses GAIA Rocks as walls. The Random Map fits in really well with story that the author has given to this wonderful and creative script. It is also the first Random map that I have seen that uses Outlaws and a wide range of ruins and rubble. A great score of 5 is given here 5
Visual Appeal: 5
The Random Map has a lot of single resource piles, which create a nice mood. I like the Outlaws because they make the map look more savage and out of control. A bit like in Robin Hood. There is a nice use of elevation and cliffs. There is terrain mixing and a lot of good trees. However, while the idea of using GAIA Rocks as walls is creative, it doesn’t really make the map look very pretty. But still the Map is a lot better than ES and well deserves a score of 5.
Hadrian’s Wall is a very fun Random map which can be played over and over again. The individual resource piles make it fun and create a cool mood for the game. The ‘wall’ itself also creates a great atmosphere as well. The Outlaws make the game feel more realistic and savage. It increases the playability and makes the game much more fun to play. Overall Hadrian’s Wall is a game that you can play and never get bored. A well deserved 5.
Hadrian’s Wall is a great Random map which is highly enjoyable and creates a nice atmosphere of a savage and broken England. A very enjoyable Random map which really does deserve an overall score of 5.