The first part of "Norse on Yucatan", which is presented here in form of a cut-scene, is a short piece of historic fiction where the authour assumes that a Viking expedition to the west once got caught in a storm and ended up sailing all the way to Yucatan, loosely based on Norse and Mayan history.
This cut-scene was only the first chapter in the story of the Vikings in Yucatan, a short introduction or prologue. The story is quite interesting, although the underdeveloped characters and occassional clichés bring it down a bit. The fact that there is nothing too special about either the story (except the general concept) and thye map design prevents this from gaining top scores, and although I did quite enjoy this cut-scene, the problems mentioned below in the other categories keep the score here down to an average score.
BALANCE (i.e. PACE & FLOW): 4
The cut-scene flowed as intended to and the pace was good. The only time I felt it was a bit off was when the spoken dialogue came on, and it took a few seconds between the related lines, making it sound a bit unnatural. The part where the boats sailed by or crashed into the reefs and rocks also seemed to drag on for a little too long between the lines of text. Other than that the pace was fine.
As far as creativity, tricks and such goes there was nothing thad stood out as extraordinary. The style of the story was rather unique as far as I'm concerned, I don't remember another scenario dealing with viking expeditions in Central America. There were an odd few design tricks, like the deck of a ship (although it looked a bit odd, I'll get to that in Map Design) and the spoken dialogue, but all in all it was around average. Not bad at all, but not strikingly good either.
MAP DESIGN: 4-
In most places the map design was good; good elevation, good terrain mixing, and suitable terrains used in the right places - green grass, jungle and desert for the forested shores of Yucatan, and snow, ice and pine trees for the icy coast of the North. The reefs and rocks out at sea also looked quite good. The on-deck scenes on the ships looked quite odd though, seeing as the deck was designed with Road Fungus. Had the authour used say unseeded farm terrain (to be found here and there in other scenarios and possibly utilities) it would've looked more like a wooden floor, whereas the road just looks odd. I know designing indoors scenes and scenes on ships isn't easy, but there is still room for improvement. Overall the map looks decent, better than average but still not a masterpiece.
STORY & INSTRUCTIONS: 3+
The story wasn't all that deep and the characters didn't get much time to develop as the cut-scene was rather short, but the story is still interesting, albeit a bit cliché at times (the old man telling the kids his life's story is quite a common theme both in scenarios and other media :P). The instructions are few but adequate. The thing that brings the score down here is the huge ammount of spelling and grammatical mistakes. The instruction text is full of them and pretty much all lines of dialogue in the cut-scene have one or two mistakes, sometimes more. While you still understand what they're saying and what's going on, they come in such copious ammounts that I feel I have to deduct a point for it. Which is a bit unfortunate as the story in itself seems rather promising.