Posted on 10/23/05 @ 07:08 PM (updated 10/27/05
It starts when a young girl sets out to help the elves fight an enemy they cannot possibly defeat. But, she doesn't know she will end up fighting for personal revenge. She doesn't know that there is much more at work than meets the eye. But, in the end, she is a hero.
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Included with the campaign is some custom music and sounds. I have also included a mod pack. You must have the mod pack installed or the campaign won't work. Any comments, good or bad, are welcome.
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|Dalamar the Dark
The main probelm is that the campaign is a little too easy, even on hard. Add in some level dynamics. There were some bugs in Chapter 3. At the end of the scenario, I wasn't entirely sure about what to do.
Like I said earlier, the campaign was kind of easy. You should add level dynamics to make it harder.
The campaign had some interesting stuff in it, like in the epilouge when the sorceress woman cast a magic spell to kill all the soldiers.
Map Design: 4
The map design was very good. I thought the part with the parts with the burned and under siege towns were very good. But, almost all the eye candy was forest. You should add more kinds of eye candy, like mountains, and maybe some rivers.
The instructions were clear, except in the end of Chapter 3. The story was interesting, but it was hard to understand in some spots.
'Reign of Destruction' is a six scenario long campaign, depicting the story of Mina, at first an innocent girl wanting to do a good deed helping the Elves in the south, but as she gets more and more involved in fighting the enemy general, she becomes one of the leaders of the defenses.
Although suffering from a lack of balance in the gameplay, Reign of Destruction surely was enjoying to play. It might not be an epic tale with frequent action and twists in the plot, but it was enjoyable nontheless. Some parts could be quite boring, like when walking between the villages in Chapter I, where nothing happend at all except on certain points, and when duelling the general on the last scenario where you just targetted the general and waited a few minutes for Mina to win the duell. A big minus point is also that the game never was hard, this playing on moderate. Never once did I feel threatened or as if I had to be quick performing a move to win.
Nontheless, Reign of Destruction has its good sides, which one is the story. Albeit not being a very deep or advanced story, it still pleases the mind and stays relevant most of the time. Another strong point, bring playability up, is the trick with darkness on the map. It gives a dark atmosphere to many scenes and works very effectively for night shots and the dark hall in the end.
Overall better than average, although the big minus points bring this down from a 4 to a strong 3.
As I mentioned before, none of the scenarios made me feel threatened. Not even at the big siege of the capitol did I feel especially threatened. My forces were always outnumbering the enemy and outsmarting them. The few somewhat challenging parts were the first battle, where you met Tanis, although the realism of walking right past the enemy lines because the battle had been put on hold can be discussed. Here it took some micromanagement to kill off the enemy captain, although he himself never was a threat to the archers at my command.
This, and a few other parts such as parts of the ambushes on scenario 2, brings the score up a bit, to a strong 2. I feel it's a small step below average, although not big enough to be a clear 2.
The darkness trick was probably the most atmospheric trick used in the campaign and it brought a good feeling of the dark an d tense atmosphere of the hall and night. Other creative things were the walkable forests with trees spread out on a floor of leaves and grass mixed with cdertain eye candy, the variety of gameplay styles and the use of good eye candy, as well as the story in itself. Having a woman the main character is something rarely seen in AoK, not only because of the lack of female units in the game. This alone gives a swing up in the score. As a whole this brings it to a 4.
MAP DESIGN: 3
The map certainly had its good points, such as the walkable woods and the elevation and eye candy in it, the dead woods and ground at many villages and some good mixing at places. I never felt I was playing a badly remade random map, which sometimes occur to me, this was a unique design made from scratch. But as the scenarios progressed the design became worse and worse. At some places the map was just plain green while it was detailed and good only a view change away. Some odd placement of eye candy at times, such as random rocks in the forest for no apparent reason, also bring the score down a bit.
A note would be that even if this is rated as in Random Map quality, this certainly is no random map. The level is on average the same but the maps are not based on random maps.
STORY & INSTRUCTIONS 4
In my opinion, the best part of the campaign. Although the story lacks from the often modern language used - like generals saying "Aw, come on!" - I believe the story is quite unique, not only because it centers around the story of a woman, which rarely occurs in AoK campaigns, but also the novelty of Mina's individual tale. Surely, fantasy tales, stories about people running away from their homes etc. are no new things, but I believe this is one of the best I've played of this sort of stories.
Despite the authours tries to create emotions in the text I found the story quite shallow at most times. There was little descriptions of people, their lives, and pretty much nothing about Mina's brother which played a quite important role in the end. The open ending also leaves you full of questions, it seems as if the story has only been half-finished and that a few scenarios are missing.
The instructions were clear at most times, and when they weren't all too clear I can't say it damaged gemplay. Mostly, everything was logical.
OVERALL: An enjoyable campaign with a few highlights
IN CLOSING: 'Reign of Destruction' has many flaws and could quite easily be made better. This may not be something for those who demand extreme quality and depth if they're to play something, but if you have an hour or two over I doubt you'll be disappointed you downloaded this.
RECOMMENDED DOWNLOAD: Yes.