|The Sad Clown
[Bites his lip] Well, the inexperience of map designing shines like the morning sun through a... through a... I dunno, something transparent.
You begin with the standard Mongol horde, riddeled with Light Cavalry, Elite Mangudai, and even a knight or two (or fifteen??), as well as a "Master of the Templar" renamed "Mission Commander". However, the complete lack of almost ANY triggers whatsoever makes winning impossible, even when you dump all of your rescued captives next to the Mongol Barracks. Even though it clearly says not to storm the Mercenaries' castle (Yes, the hired war nomads have their own castle, as well as two guard towers and two gates) as many times in the instructions and hint box as you have knights(??), I found it to be my best chance for success. If you take advantage of the fact your villies have "sappers" preresearched, the castle will crumble like a... like a... uhh, forget the analogies. 2.
Heh, heh, heh... Balance! This was nearly the most unbalanced scenario I've ever seen! As I said previously, your neatly varied army outnumbers the Chinese berserkers (yeah! Chinese berserkers! What's next? Mongol knights?!) almost 19:1. The Chinese also start with 1 town center, palisades surrounding your inslaved friends, three villagers, and one Scout Cavalry - remarkably similar to a Random Map game, huh? (oh, yeah! See "Map Design") The only reason why "Balance" wasn't completely wrapped up and thrown away was because of the Mercenary army. Even though it's just about 11 Paladins and 11 Elite Mamelukes, the fighting will decrease your horde by 1/4. Or, you could just use your Mangudai's wisely and suffer no casualties! Other than them, there is no one to stand in your way. 2.
I gotta respect the designer's idea of rescuing your kidnapped friends and piling them up on a tiny island north of Port Evens. Sounds like you're treating them worse than the Chinese! Yes, it's a good idea. But as I stated, impossible. There is no trigger to activate victory, so you have to win by conquest. Simply put, all other great idea's were drowned in inexperience and triggerphobia. 2.
Map Design: 3
The only good thing here was the partial decency, substandard town design of Port Evens. Other than that, it was all created by the random map generator, staight down to the 5 relics. Maybe, just maybe he dragged some leaves through thick jungle patches here and there, but the random mappyness was disgustingly obvious, which kills any enthusiasm or respect for any good features (like Port Evens). 3.
The instruction box shares the same intel with the hints. Unprofessional. There are as many typo's as there are dots on a basketball. Unprofessional. There are absolubtly no in-game messages, hints, or chats. Unprofessional. The suggestions are baist or incorrect. Unprofessional. The story - a description. Unprofessional. 2.
I really don't like to be rude or brutally honost (I am a sad clown, after all. I'm used to getting laughed at. Why does everyone laugh at me? It makes me sad.), but a scenario this bad leaves me no other choice. It resembled something barfed up by a drunken bum, and obviously was made in five minutes or so. I didn't know ancient China was covered in dense rainforests! Or that Jaguars and Macaws ran amuck everywhere! Or that there was an ocean seperating Mongolia and China that was rich with ports with Anglo-Saxon names! But you learn something new every day. The best word to describe this scenario - lazy. It was lazily made. I apoligize if I hurt anyone's feelings, but that's the truth.
[Edited on 07/13/06 @ 06:30 AM]