|BB of BD
Posted on 07/31/04 @ 12:00 AM (updated 12/11/04
This is the updated version of the Random Map Script Endor, in which I tried to fulfill the suggestions of Berserker Jerker.
||Build and Destroy
The theme is the same as before: the scenario takes place on the forested planet of Endor, which you can see in Star Wars Episode 6: Return of the Jedi. I sure hope I can give back the feel of the plentiful land that is Endor, with lakes, forests, and abundant life. I still couldn't find a solution for the swoopbikes though:-)
|Author||Reviews ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )|
Note: The Author has gone to the trouble of updating this script, and I have updated the review accordingly.
I was intrigued by the title for this script, the name "Endor" to me always suggests J. R. R. Tolkien's continent of Middle-earth, where The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings are set. It is however another “Endor”, namely the one from Star Wars episode 6 Return of the Jedi. My memories of this location in the film are a planet that is very densely forested. However I must confess I haven’t seen the film for quite some time, and my memories are vague at best. So for the purpose of this review I won’t make any comparisons, giving the author the benefit of the doubt, and simply try to describe the general theme instead. The maps are vaguely similar in layout to Black Forest but with more numerous paths through the trees, there are a good number of small ponds, and these ponds are generally bordered by rocks. There is a good mix of terrains used, and the forests are predominantly Pine trees, with a few patches of Jungle trees. On very small maps the amount of paths through the trees decreases, almost to a point where on tiny maps you can be completely surrounded by trees in a similar style to no rush maps.
Visual appeal: 4
The maps are always a good mix of terrains, there is use of elevation, although the elevation is only apparent around your starting location, and moving away from starting locations the terrain tends to be rather flat. There is blending of terrain types, and overall the visual appeal is very good. There are always dense clumps of flowers and rocks around the map for eye candy, but often they seem out of place when situated in open areas. The small ponds that are dotted over the map look strange to me being surrounded by rocks, and I feel they would have been complimented by use of elevation around them, but this is just personal preference. There are always small patches of “Snow grass” dotted around the maps, and these often appear out of place.
The game play does suffer from a few small niggling problems, but generally the maps are great fun to play, and definitely a must have for Black Forest fans. Each player starts with the usual 3 villagers TC and scout, but also with a house and two outposts that are a good distance from your TC. The starting locations are always easily defendable helping with players of different skill levels, and the numerous paths through the forests present some great strategic opportunities. The many small ponds on the maps often contain fish that can help with Dark Age food gathering, but due to the ponds being surrounded by rocks, often it is impossible to reach the fish contained within, and hence the benefits from fishing with either villagers or fishing ships is lost. There are 6 relics each time you play, and on occasions these can get blocked behind the rocks surrounding the ponds making them impossible to collect. There is a reasonable amount of Gold and Stone on the maps, and the amounts increase with larger maps without going overboard. The number of wolves on the maps is quite high, and generally they are located near sheep and deer, this certainly adds to the game play, and I tried to imagine them as unfriendly native “Ewoks” of Endor rather than wolves. The standard AI plays the map well, but on occasions it can wall its self in. This is by no means a problem with the maps, and either setting Goths who don’t build walls or using a custom AI that doesn’t build walls will overcome this occasional annoyance.
Overall this is a very good RMS that is pleasant to view and great fun to play. If you are a fan of Black Forest I highly recommend this, and I only wish there was a few “swoopbikes” available in AOK to speed down the forest paths. I look forward to seeing more from the author.
Notes to the author:
Playability remains unaltered, and the small niggling problems with relics and fishing remain. Visual appeal has been improved, but I feel it could still be improved further. There are still many things that could be added as eye candy, blending pine forests with Oak forest, and “lands” could be used for the ponds instead of terrain. Then elevation could be used without any adverse effects on the water. I debated long and hard over theme. The theme is trying to recreate something that AOK was not designed for, namely the forest moon of Endor from Star wars. This, in it’s self, is a true credit and an admirable job, but overall the general theme is not entirely new, and I still feel the forest setting could be improved further, and portrayed better. To quote the review tutorial for 5 rating “A completely new idea that is not only well thought out, but perfectly executed. This represents an outstanding effort and lots of playtesting” Therefore I feel compelled to leave this part unaltered.
Thank you for creating this script, it has given us hours of fun and if you have any questions, or ever need a tester, feel free to email me, I am always happy to help.