ESHotAC - Tribulation in Athelney v1.1
Posted on 05/19/01 @ 12:00 AM (updated 06/25/01
This is my entry to the ES Heroes of the Ages Contest.
||The Conquerors 1.0c
In this scenario you´ll be Alfred the Great, who lived in the 9th century.
You´ll have to arrive to the cities of Okley and Edington, and then fight against the Vikings who are in the area.
The scenario was made by Andres_age, member of Woad Creations and leader of the Latin Design Team.
- Less wolves at the begining
- General improvements
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Tribulation in Athelney is a campaign that chronicles the life of Alfred the Great, a Saxon ruler who freed the English from Viking rule. I thought overall it was a good campaign, but it had some problems with balance and playability.
First of all, the -Playability- was average. For most of the scenario, you lead a small group of men through forests and meadows fighting bands of hostile Vikings. But after a while, it got boring. However, the playability got much better as the scenario went on.
Which brings me to my next point: -Balance-. The balance in this campaign was not very good. Usually in scenarios, you will find that they are too easy. But in this scenario, at Standard difficulty, I died nearly 10 times in just the first 15 minutes of the scenario. I don't consider myself a bad Age of Kings player, but every trick that I tried(luring enemies away so I could kill them one-by-one; returning all the way back to the town to heal my troops after every battle) didn't have any effect on the difficulty of this scenario. It was just too hard.
The -Creativity- of this campaign was good. It used some new ideas, some old ones too, but I still think it deserved a solid 4 in this area.
-Map Design-, one of the better points of this campaign. I thought the map design was great. The author's use of flowers and paths really brought out a feudal feel in this scenario.
The -Story and Instructions- were great. All the objectives were clear, all the dialougues were easy to understand, the scenario instruction map was very well done, and the historic background was really thorough.
Tribulation in Athelney is one of the better historic campaigns that I have played. I think that if the author improves in the areas of playability and balance, he will surely have a scenario/campaign in the Best of AoK the next time around.
This campaign, Tribulation in Athelney v1.1, is a pretty mediocre scenario. It was a basically one of those "walk around talk-to-people RPG's".
The playability was definitely mediocre. You walk around for about 20 minutes on the map, trying to find the "earls" of each city. Finally, after you take command of a real army, you get into some real action. However, by then you are probably already tired of the scenario.
The balance was ok, a tad too hard for me. Even at the standard difficulty, I still found it very difficult to just get to Okley, the first town you must go because there was some 30 wolves on the way. After that, vikings (elite berserks) block the way to Edington, and these vikings sure know how to crack open a barrell of whoop-you-know-what on your head. The only way that I found possible to get around the vikings is to lure them back to Okley and have the Okley castle take care of them. So, way too hard.
There wasn't too much creativity. Basically, you walk around for a long while (typical RPG stuff) beating enemies on the way, and then you shift gears into some B&D action. These concepts have been used again and again for who knows how many times... However, the defend the monastery part and the "choose your path to victory" part were both pretty creative, so a 3 is deserved.
The map design is fantastic. Definitely a 5.
The story was good, since you know very well that you are King Alfred and your mission is to push back the Viking advances. Some triggers and events in the scenario did make you feel like you are a respected king. However, the instructions were a bit lacking. Perhaps it might be due to bad English... but I just found them a tad confusing.
- Fantastic map design
- Boring gameplay
- Too hard for the typical joe
Final Thoughts: Although not a masterpiece, this campaign still deserves a shot at. So, if you are one of those hardcore gamers, this is the scenario for you.