Age of Kings Heaven
Downloads Home
Best Files
Review Guidelines
Main site
Code of Conduct

Advanced Search
Showcase Scenarios
New Releases
New Reviews
New Comments

Submit File
Browse Categories
New Files
Recent Updates

Downloads Home » Best Files » PTC15 - Smile No More

Download File Post Review Post Comment

PTC15 - Smile No More

Author File Description
File Details
Version: The Conquerors 1.0c
What if you couldn't let go?

Smile No More is my entry to the 2015 Pretty Town Contest. It will play correctly on all versions of the game to my knowledge, but was designed with Userpatch. Some small features will not work on 1.0c, though the scenario should still run.

AuthorReviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Official Reviewer
Smile No More is the winner of the 2015 Pretty Town Contest, but it clearly is not a pretty town. It is in truth, a rather dilapidated and ugly town, devoid of life and long abandoned to the elements. It tells the story of one man's sorrow as he confronts the past which haunts him.

We are first treated to a reading from Edgar Allan Poe's poem "The Haunted Palace", which sets the scene for the viewer as the scenario begins. Controlling the solitary rider, we are presented with an unfolding recount as past events are conferred upon the player. A haunting soundtrack accompanies the discordant map, perfectly timed to loop accurately for the specified settings.

The map's dual attractions of haunting story and exquisite map design are both superb. Matt demonstrates outstanding technique, using mapcopy and off-centre placement to construct and hide unique buildings into the terrain, demonstrating sophisticated craft and ingenuity. All areas of the map have been well developed with the use of terrain, and only the shoreline and beaches can be criticised at all, but only in comparison to the excellence of the rest of the map. If I were to nitpick, and clearly I must, for If I use the word "perfect" I imply there can be no improvement, the beaches lack any sort of character and are essentially the same small slithers of desert and beach repeated for different promontories. Also of note, and this truly is splitting hairs, is that several groups of buildings exist where some objects have been renamed, but others retain their vanilla object name. However, these shortcomings are obviously extremely minor, and are only worth mentioning to prevent this review from seeming like insincere praise.

Rating: 5

[Edited on 08/04/15 @ 01:45 PM]

Official Reviewer
Smile No More is Matt's winning entry to the 2015 Pretty Town Contest

Rating: 5
Smile No More depicts an mysterious and slightly spooky abandoned town. The story starts with an extracts from Edgar Allan Poe's poem "The Haunted Palace" which sets the scene for the maps mysterious and haunting atmosphere. The haunting atmosphere is complete with a soundtrack tat loops with perfect timing.

The map design it self is exceptional and well deserved the winning spot in the competition. Matt displays incredible designing talent and shows just what can be done with AOK map editor and the new tools and features of UserPatch. The map has a beautiful design and fantastic terrain mixing. The layout of the town is brilliant with a great use of buildings and a good placement of buildings, objects and eye-candy. Matt demonstrates incredible technical skill especially when it comes to using the map copy tool and off grid placement. Matt has come up with some very creative ideas using these tools to create unique buildings and styles. For example, using mountains he hide the majority of the Saracen Wonder behind mountains, leaving only the tower bit visible which now represents a lighthouse. Matt also uses the off grid tool to place bushes over the Asian University so only the unique statue from that building is visible, which adds a new piece of eye candy into the game without any modding.

Additional Comments:
Overall this map is an incredibly beautiful and creative Showcase, proving just what we can achieve in the editor and proving that there are almost no limits.

Fantastic Work, Well Done
Official Reviewer
Smile No More is the entry with which Matt took first place in the 2015 Pretty Town Contest, and I feel it is his best work to date.

Authenticity: I was truly impressed by Matt’s use of sound effects, music, triggering, and design to create a novel, engaging, and unique experience. I felt that this entry in particular stands apart from the others in terms of atmosphere, presentation, and the intangible factors that make the player feel attached to the gaming experience. The method of storytelling was also very unique and reminded me a little of Lord Basse’s Sagropireia at some points, but hit on a much different tone of tragedy. Dialogues were used quite well but another round of proofreading could have helped in avoiding a spelling error or two.

Creativity: Several design tricks have been used on this map that have probably never been seen outside of SWS or Matt’s previous works. The design style was very distinct and little creative touches like overlapping foliage with walls and trees to create a different look were nice little touches. The use of the Edgar Allan Poe poem at the start to immerse the player was apt and contributed to an altogether excellent experience.

Layout: The map design was 5.0 material, and what perhaps impressed me the most was the different segments of the map that showcased the author’s ability to design in several different landscapes. What struck me the most was the creativity that was incorporated into the map design. Not only was the author designing at a high level – he was also innovating at one. To quote a review by Mash on another scenario, “the design is literally good enough to drool over for hours on end.”

Technical skill: The technical and atmospheric work in the scenario makes it no surprise that the author is an acclaimed ACSC winner. The use of music, sound effects, and general design skill contributed to a wholesome map. I noticed a spelling error or two but not enough to detract much from an overall excellent entry.

Unsurprisingly, I recommend the download!

Post Review Post Comment

HGDL v0.8.1

Forum Username:


Create a new account
Forgot password?
Favorites: [Who?]3
Size:6.87 MB