Archived News From July 2002

Due to the old age of most of these news items, all hyperlinks have been disabled. It is also not possible to comment on any of news. They are presented in their current form purely for your reading pleasure – it’s the closest thing to a time machine we can offer you!

AoKH Ladder Standings
Posted by Theta on July 31st, 2002 @ 7:47 p.m.
Sorry it took a little while to post the ladder standings. But better late then never! And look who remains as the Champ!

  1. 304: YuG_Baja_VII
  2. 246: Souyrar_
  3. 242: Chichiri
  4. 211: MoFo_Revolution
  5. 210: Myll_Slaghter)
  6. 209: petard_rusher
  7. 205: Myll_Barka
  8. 203: Flank
  9. 200: _HitMeHardPls_
  10. 198: Annoyomous

Grats folks, and good luck next week!

Blacksmith Updates Postponed
Posted by Theta on July 31st, 2002 @ 7:11 p.m.
Some of you are probably wondering why the Blacksmith has not been updated yet. Here’s your answer, once again Heaven Games is in the process of moving servers. And this move has disabled any additional updates to the Blacksmith. We will most defiantly get AoKH and the Blacksmith back to working order ASAP.

Thank you for your patience and understanding

–AoKH Staff–

Congratulations: A Noble Cause HG’s Latest Staff Member
Posted by Theta on July 30th, 2002 @ 7:40 a.m.
A Noble Cause has agreed to join the staff here at HG. He will be responsible for the ladder programs and whatever else we can talk him in to doing ( hehe ). His AOKH Ladder program has been a huge hit here with all the ladder players and has saved us hours if not days in updating time.

A great guy loved by all. He is a valuable addition to the HG team. We are thrilled to have him as a member of our gang!

Go show….A Noble Cause!

Download server down today
Posted by TheShadowDawn on July 29th, 2002 @ 5:03 p.m.
Downloads will be down sometime today as the downloads are moved over to the new server. Thanks for your patience with this matter, they ought to be back up soon.

Blacksmith Feature: The Templars
Posted by Theta on July 27th, 2002 @ 6:33 p.m.
Sorry for the delay in this week’s Blacksmith Feature, stuck in Seattle attending a wedding till Monday. Without further ado …drum roll please:

Welcome to another week’s Feature of the Week, this week from the horde’s of designs in the Blacksmith I set my eyes upon The Story of The Templars-I.

The gameplay is of a Mix style, nothing like variety. The story is based around the Knights of the Order Templar, an Order established during the crusades and much myth and legend lies around them, I happen to be a fan of their history and such, and so this became a download without another word uttered.

The author, xavill of Woad Creations, has written an interesting description, which can be found here. Here is an extract: –

“The Knight Templar were founded by Hugues de Payen and eight knights more that arrived in 1118 to Jerusalem in order to stablish a base to protect the pilgrims in their way to Jerusalem.
After nine years they travelled back to Europe to recruit more knights to their cause.
How is possible that a nine knights order became the most powerful organisation of their times? This campaign will give a historical-fictional point of view of this fact. “

Still wondering whether to download this campaign or not? Well it got a huge 6 reviews! All reviews scores range between 4.6 to 3.2 however, the general consensus is that this is definitely Best of AoK material. It averages out at a 4.0 out of a possible 5.0

A worthy download and if you’re interested in the Crusades and the various Christian invaders a must download.

More SCN Editor Tricks
Posted by Theta on July 25th, 2002 @ 9:29 p.m.
A few days back, Thunder had posted about some neat tricks with the SCN editor. Today BrandNewCar alerted me that he and another designer, Philip Dunscombe have found a couple more.

  • Post 85 from BrandNewCar explains just how this trick works with Invisible farms.
  • Second trick, shows a villager standing in a castle! Here’s the thread that tells how to do it and a nice screenie to prove it.
  • And finally, New Terrain Discoveries, mix and match the different types of terrains in AoK. Here’s an image of proof!

Great find BrandNewCar and excellent work Philip Dunscombe!

Ogre Looks For TTA Help
Posted by Theta on July 25th, 2002 @ 6:32 a.m.
Our buds from Through the Ages send along a note that are looking for some help with their Age site.

If you are interested or have any questions, send an email to Orge to enquire. Volunteering for a site is the best place to start if you’ve got any interests in pursuing a career in the gaming industry, take Archangel, Vidguy and Thunder for example, all were past Age webmasters. You just never know what may happen.

Here’s the note:


Ogre recently has been working on a lot of things. He can sense the site has been suffering due to this. Right now he needs someone who can pretty much run the show. Though he’ll never of course go away from the site, he still needs a webmaster that can run Through The Ages for the most part without his day to day presence.

If your interested please drop Ogre an email on your web experience at his ogresnet address. You don’t have to be super experienced. You just have to have a basic understanding of web site operations.

Send all inquiries to:

Eric (Ogre) Lizotte
Ogre’s Network/Through The Ages Webmonster

Friendly Hello
Posted by Theta on July 25th, 2002 @ 3:07 a.m.
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would end up being the Seraph for an Age game. I started playing the Age series back in ’98. It was in these very forums where I learned, and exchanged strategies and thoughts with other Forumers.

I have watched the Age sites on HeavenGames grow, grow and grow, just as many of you have as well. Filling the immense shoes that Thunder left behind is no easy task. I’m trying to add some weight to my lower appendages in order to fit into those shoes more comfortably though.

Well, Zen’s covered most of the bases. So here I am, and I’m looking forward to continuing the HeavenGames tradition.

Good luck at BHG Thunder, We’ll all miss you LOTS!


HG: Transcendence
Posted by Zen on July 25th, 2002 @ 2:23 a.m.
We’ve got good news, and, well, good news!

First, we’d like to extend our congratulations to Thunder, who has been hired as the Community Relations Manager for Big Huge Games, following in the footsteps of other former Angels that have gone on to work in community-related positions at gaming companies. For those that don’t follow the RTS scene, Big Huge Games, a company based in Baltimore, Maryland, is the developer for one of MS’s next RTS games, “Rise of Nations”.

As a result, Thunder has stepped down from his roles at Age of Kings Heaven and Age of Mythology Heaven to focus on his new job. Thunder joined HeavenGames three years ago and has excelled at his duties at HG. So Thunder, we’d like to take this moment to say a big “Thank You” for all the work you have done for us, as well as doing a great job representing HeavenGames. This one’s for ya!

And now, please give a warm welcome to your new interim Age of Kings Heaven / Age of Mythology Heaven seraph, “Angel Theta”, also known as “Angel Farmgirl” on Dungeon Siege Heaven. Theta is well known in the Age community, a great friend of HeavenGames, as well as a proficient RTS player. Welcome aboard!

Good luck to both of you!

As always, Here’s the thread to wish him off

… Boy, we are definitely going to miss those whisper-scripts of yours!

Ingo Van Thiel Interview…
Posted by Thunder on July 24th, 2002 @ 6:14 p.m.
While launching into a discussion on the art of balancing gameplay in scenarios, BrandNewCar took the opportunity to interview a very talented designer and long long time Ager, Ingo Van Thiel:

“Question 2 : Playtesters is generally used by many, many designers now, however what do you test for in your “in house” testing, before anyone else sees your work?

Answer 2: There are countless things that can go wrong, especially when many triggers are involved. Most of my time is spent on searching for obvious trigger mistakes. The other important things are balancing the game. First, I play the challenges through and try to play smartly – that is, I use the method I think is right to solve the challenge. The next thing I do is test what happens if I deliberately slip up – like, “is it possible to lose if I don’t send out my knights to destroy that trebuchet?” Then I always check if the game is entertaining for myself. When I have kicked out the most obvious flaws and got the overall balance right, I usually ask others for help. And there has not been an AoK scenario where people didn’t find any unexpected bugs or loopholes.”

Source – Designer’s Pool 3: Game Balance

It is a very nice chat that they have, covering a wide range of design related topics. Thanks for your time Ingo! Check out this post for the full interview and to join the discussion on game balance, a tricky bit of design. …I rather enjoy scenarios that are easy to beat…makes me feel like I know what I’m doing… ; )

Zen’s B-Day!
Posted by Thunder on July 24th, 2002 @ 0:40 a.m.
I hope everyone will join me in wishing Angel Zen —aka Unkie Zen— a very happy birthday! Today he is getting another year older, but he sure doesn’t seem to be slowing down despite his now ancient age. Happy Birthday old timer!

You can extend your birthday greetings to Zen via this post in the HG forums. …as a gift…maybe we should let him win a game…naaaah… ; )

Get Your Priorities Right…
Posted by Thunder on July 22nd, 2002 @ 7:52 p.m.
A lengthy but worthwhile post has been made in the forum by ME_Count_Rahl, which makes several good points about having good goals in your games instead of just a handful of strategies in your arsenal. Here is a little from the introduction which spells out Rahl’s thinking:

“The strategies in AoC are as we all know rather stagnant, they are stuck in a rut with very few options being available to players especially on the arabia map, which of course is the most popular map and will continue to be so until the game is not played anymore. So now it comes down to having your priorities in order, and having goals within the game that you must try to reach. But what exactly are these goals and how should you set them is the big question.”

Source – Sometimes knowing your goals is more important than having all the best strategies memorized….

Arabia and Medi maps are the two that are covered, but many of the tips can translate over to other maps. The basic strategies are outlined, and the goals that you should be trying to achieve are covered in some detail for 1v1 and team games. Thanks for the repost Rahl! …tons of good advice in there…never too late to get your priorities straight! ; )

Celebrating Randomness…
Posted by Thunder on July 21st, 2002 @ 2:19 a.m.
Wonderful randomness, which gives us so much variety and replayability! There is no question that it is one of the main reasons that there are so many long time players of the Age series still around. Join our latest Ladder festival celebrating all that is uncertain with super random settings from July 22-26. If you play a ladder game with the following settings you will earn yourself a bonus ladder point regardless of winning or losing the game:

“- Random Civ
– Blind Random
– Hardest Difficulty (Subject to change)
– Standard Resources
– 200 Pop
– Teams locked, game recorded, no cheats, etc.
– Reveal Map : Normal
– Starting Age : Dark
– Victory : Standard
– Teams (If applicable): Random”

Source – AoKH Ladder Festival – Randomness

In true ladder festival fashion, you will have to mention when you report your games during the festival that you played with the above settings in order to earn your bonus points. Be sure to stop in on the Randomness Festival Post for complete details on this event! …all we need now are random resource and random game type settings… ; )

2v2 Meso Tourney!
Posted by Thunder on July 20th, 2002 @ 2:58 a.m.
Forumer Ballistix is organizing a 32 team 2v2 all american tournament. That is, you’ll only be able to choose one of the two new world civilizations! Ready your Eagle Warriors and check out the full list of settings:

“Civs available: Aztecs and Mayans
Map: Yucatan
Map size: Medium (4 player)
Difficulty: easiest
Resources: Standard
Pop Limit: 200
Reveal Map: Normal
Starting Age: Dark
Victory: Standard
Teams locked, game recorded, no cheats, etc “

Source – AoKH 2v2 Meso Tourney

Yucatan…not the most popular map, but appropriate for this tournament. You will have to grab yourself a partner and sign-up fairly soon! Visit the Tournament Post for the full list of rules and deadlines. …only ladder players need apply… ; )

Blacksmith Feature: As Briton Lay Bleeding…
Posted by Thunder on July 19th, 2002 @ 3:10 a.m.
We are turning things over to BrandNewCar once again this week for his pick from the Blacksmith. Take it away Car:

Welcome to this week’s feature of the week. After having looked through the hordes of different types of creations in the Blacksmith I chose “As Briton Lay Bleeding: A Pendragon Saga 1” by Gordon Farrell, a veteran designer of the Age series of games.

As Briton lay Bleeding depicts history with such names Vortigern and Prince Constantine as you progress through this 3 scenario, campaign. The story is set in the turmoil that is Briton, the Pict’s are attacking and soon to follow in their footsteps are the Saxon’s. A historically based campaign set around the murky British past.

The gameplay style is a mix of types and has many different and interesting ideas, such as the death of an Archbishop by means of a heart attack.. I won’t spoil it further for you, however. Essential for this campaign are the sounds, which are linked on the description page.

The author, Gordon Farrell has written a particularly impressive description. Here is an extract:-

“Britain is in a time of deep crisis. She lies defenseless as hordes of barbarians swoop down from the north. But out of this anguish, a new ruling family will arise. It is the House of Constantine the royal family that will eventually produce a legendary monarch known as King Arthur. This campaign tells the story of Arthur’s royal house decades before he himself was even born. Here you will encounter the villains and heroes who shaped the early history of the Arthurian Age: Constantine the noble, Vortigern the ruthless, Guithelinus the holy. Witness the birth of Merlin and the invasion of the Saxon horde. The Pendragon Saga begins here.”

The full description can be found here. This campaign’s additional soundtracks really are a must have.

With a strong story and good gameplay and some tricks that will make you wonder, this campaign scored a 4.6 out of a possible 5 from 3 reviews. The reviews can be found here and are a true testament to this wonderful campaign’s ability to enthral the player. So much running in the opening scenarios reminds me of rabbits… ; )

Project Fifty…
Posted by Thunder on July 19th, 2002 @ 0:42 a.m.
Fifty ladder games in a week? Impossible right? Well, KUBLA_Khan, who goes by SKD_Earthworm on the Zone, is out to set that record and is currently very close to doing it! At the moment, he is just seven little games shy of his goal, and still going strong. Get out there and give him a hand if you can! You just need to be a member of our Ladder to compete. …just don’t expect an easy win from him… ; )

Server Swap…
Posted by Thunder on July 19th, 2002 @ 0:02 a.m.
Here’s a brief heads up on the status of our server. We are getting an upgrade to one with some more bandwidth and a bit more horsepower! Hopefully this will mean a smooth ride here on HG even during peak hours or those big announcement days. This process should be completed by the 31st of July, and if all goes well —and we all know that’s always the case when it comes to servers— you won’t notice any major down time. We will keep you informed as best we can. …the server is being moved to within kicking distance from our server admin… ; )

Enter Zen…
Posted by Thunder on July 14th, 2002 @ 7:37 a.m.
In a few hours I’ll be taking off on a brief trip. Angel Zen is going to be manning the fort while I’m off having a grand time, so be sure to bring anything newsworthy to his attention while I’m gone as e-mailing me will get you ignored more than usual. ( I’m back on Tuesday night, so until then, take care! …no doubt something BIG will happen while I’m gone…always seems to work that way… ; )

Spiney’s RoN Preview…
Posted by Thunder on July 12th, 2002 @ 7:50 a.m.
The HeavenGames team had more than our fair share of hands on time with Rise of Nations at this year’s E3 in May. We had several demos of the game, watched some multiplayer action, and yes we even competed in all of their lunch hour mini-tournaments with a very good record. Angel Spineman has put pen to paper and completed a fantastic in-depth RoN preview that highlights many of the unique aspects of the military and economics of the game. It may look familiar, but it’s a whole new battlefield folks. …flanking, borders, civilization style tech tree…*drool* ; )

Blacksmith Feature: Sea Of Tonteria…
Posted by Thunder on July 12th, 2002 @ 1:17 a.m.
The ever reliable BrandNewCar has turned up with a new feature! This one comes from one of those dark corners of the site and may be of interest to those who are looking for something a little different in multiplayer. Take it away Car:

Another week passes us by and it’s time for another Blacksmith Feature of the Week. This week I choose to gage my eyes over something different, and as such this brought me to the random map script section of the Blacksmith and this.

Sea of Tonteria is not just one random map script but actually, two. Namely, Sea of Tonteria land and Sea of Tonteria rivers. Designed by veteran random map scripter RF_Gandalf this project was designed to give a map based on the Kingdom of Tonteria’s surroundings and so forth. Tonto’s clan site can be found here if you are intrigued to find out more.

A script, which resource placement is as good as the ES scripts is hard to come by, and I’m sure this is one such random map. This can of course mean only one thing…you may find you’re spending more time playing single player than usual for a couple of days.

An extract taken from the description page sums up what these two random map scripts are trying to achieve.

“The first, Sea of Tonteria-land is just like Baltic except for the above changes. Each player gets an extra starting stone pile. The center island has a few deer, one gold and one stone pile, but on higher map sizes where the island is larger there is yet another group of deer and a second smaller gold and stone pile. Resources are otherwise like Baltic, but the sea has more fish than the ES standard.

The second, Sea of Tonteria-rivers, is like the above description but with a river between each player, and a shallow connection between each as well. Obviously, this gives a possibility of a more defensive style of play, but the rivers also allow better access to fishing for each player as well. This second map has a few more fish than the first to help ‘fill’ the rivers with fish too.

Occasionally the central island gets squeezed to a rather small size, which is due to the way the lands are put down by the map generator.”

Need to be won over? No problem. Who better than the former head of Tonto Clan to come and review these scripts, Tonto Real, who’s review can be found here. He gives it a perfect score of 5.0. Something, which has only been achieved twice so far in the random map scene, and both have been by RF_Gandalf. …Time for another week’s witty comment.. * wonders when Thunder will relieve him of the witty comments * “Take him away..” ; )

AOM Alpha Confirmations!
Posted by Thunder on July 10th, 2002 @ 9:07 p.m.
If you signed up for the Age of Mythology alpha test, keep a close eye on your in-boxes later today. The lucky 10,000 testers who were randomly selected will be notified soon! Mike “Archangel” McCart has also posted a teaser over at AOM Heaven, revealing that the alpha has had some recent tweaking done to it at Ensemble Studios. What was added? We’re not sure just yet, but keep at eye on AOMH for more! …thanks for the updates Archangel… ; )

Invisible Farms Screenies…
Posted by Thunder on July 9th, 2002 @ 11:09 p.m.
A little trick that is no doubt of interest to scenario designers is available for the viewing today. Cknchaos —aka Nishanth Premraj and winner of the recent Pretty Town Contest— has provided us with a few screenshots showing invisible farms in action. It’s not just a teaser post, but we can expect a utility to help us all take advantage of this cool trick in our own scenarios. Thanks Cknchaos! …if you listen closely, you can hear light bulbs going on over the heads of scenario designers on how they can make use of those farms… ; )

AOKH Ladder Standings…
Posted by Thunder on July 8th, 2002 @ 8:59 a.m.
It was a short lived reign, probably a testament to how many good players are involved in our Ladder. Not long after making the big announcement, including trumpets, that our new ladder champion had taken up the throne, Chichiri entered into a slugfest with YuG_Baja_VII and was defeated in two games! Yes folks, once again we are introducing another new ladder champion. He’s been lurking fairly high up in our rankings for some time now, and has seized his moment:

  1. 232: YuG_Baja_VII [aka DnB_DauT] (remains #1 until defeated)
  2. 246: Souyrar_
  3. 224: Chichiri
  4. 213: petard_rusher
  5. 212: Myll_Barka
  6. 211: MoFo_Revolution
  7. 210: Myll_Slaghter
  8. 197: _Final_Boss_
  9. 192: Pezeteros_ [aka redhair_LOLITA]
  10. 191: Taiga_Milk_

Source – Ladder
So that’s the way things stand at the moment. Here’s hoping our new ladder champion enjoys his time at the top, because as he well knows there a pack of talented players all looking to take his place! Best of luck defending the crown YuG_Baja_VII!

The tireless Dark Side of Day, our ladder manager, has made his weekly picks, highlighting those players who let it all hang out, so to speak. Topping his list of Ladder Warriors for the week is LTR_SARK_USA, who continues to attack the ladder with all sorts of energy and obviously some talent too. On the big list as well are Tarzan_1 and LongBow, who are long time ladder players that have been tearing it up of late. Well earned guys! …hmm, this may be a cool addition for the ladder eh? …rock on A Noble Cause! ; )

Pretty Town Contest Results!
Posted by Thunder on July 7th, 2002 @ 1:02 a.m.
Many thanks to Angel Park for taking the time to help me judge the seventeen amazing entries we received for this map design contest. Every entry was a strong one, which made our task of selecting a winner that much harder. As you will see by our scores and the long list of honourable mentions, it was a close race, to say the least. You can view the full set of scores as well as find a link to download all of the top scoring towns here: Pretty Town Contest Results

Congratulations to our winner: Cknchaos
Our Runner-up: Dark_Warrior_1_
And our Honourable Mentions, creations by: Anastasia of Tsunami Studios
magna gb
Lighthouse Creations
BrandNewCar and Quazitory

Thanks to everyone for participating! …Cknchaos and Dark_Warrior_1_, please check your in-boxes… ; )

Pretty Town Contest Results

Hail Champ Chichiri!
Posted by Thunder on July 6th, 2002 @ 7:37 a.m.
After many attempts, Chichiri has claimed our AOKH Ladder championship! He defeated Myll_Barka once, and claimed the title with another win in the rematch. Congratulations to our new champion, and to Barka, who will surely be back for another run at top spot.

You can check out both recorded games of these two players fighting for the crown here in our recorded games section. …along with some kickin’ big team games that I’ve gotta see…congrats ChiChi! ; )

New Editor Tricks?!?
Posted by Thunder on July 5th, 2002 @ 11:28 p.m.
Yes, after all these years, people are still finding new and amazingly creative tricks to pull of with the scenario editor! In just the last few days, no less than three exciting new tricks have been revealed. Here is a run down:

Both Philip Dunscombe and BrandNewCar have devised ways of making it appear as though a unit is swimming in the water. This obviously has many potential applications in scenario stories, so be sure to get both methods in this post in the forums.

Next up is Shiva, who has been able to turn a plain ol’ bridge into a fire which you can place anywhere you like! The example given is a volcanoe, but again this has many potential applications:

“Everyone knows about damaging a [certain type of] bridge so that walkable water can be acquired. But, have you tried setting the bridges on fire?

Damage them..oh, i don’t know..about 500 and they start to burn in the middle. The player can NOT be gaia..he should be in gray color. Put some path over them, map copy them..

You have yourself hot springs! I’ve also tried putting mountains over the bridges, it works very nicely..the mountain actually burns..well, it doesn’t..but it looks like it’s burning.”

Source – Trigger trick, possibly known by many, or none.

You want more? No problem! Nishanth Premraj, of Tsunami Studios, discovered a way to create invisible farms, which can create the appearance of villagers working at something else entirely. The post created quite a stir, but we are going to have to wait for an article from Nishanth Premraj detailing how to pull this feat off. …thanks to BrandNewCar for links, and cracking the whip on me…perhaps another scenario design contest would stir things up even further… ; )

Blacksmith Feature: The Hundred Years War…
Posted by Thunder on July 5th, 2002 @ 1:36 a.m.
Before we dive into BrandNewCar‘s weekly pick from the Blacksmith, here is a brief update on the judging process of our Pretty Town Contest. Angel Park has stepped forward to give me a hand in evaluating the seventeen entries we have. They are all of surprisingly high quality to say the least, which has made our job very difficult. We are getting down to the nitty gritty though and will be announcing the winner, runner-up, and honourable mentions on Saturday! Our thanks to all of you who entered, and you can be sure that you’ll soon find these gorgeous maps for download right here.

Now, take it away Car:

Welcome to another week’s Blacksmith Feature of the Week. This week I have chosen to write the article on The Hundred Year’s War, as it’s been a while since a historically based campaign has been featured so I thought this would make a nice change.

The Hundred Years War v.2.0 is a campaign based around the historical war between the English and the French. This monument of a campaign is in a Mix style of gameplay including a variety of types of play, but for the most part Fixed Force. You step into the shoes of King Henry and must fight through Agincourt to Orlean, hence the Scenario’s name. The author, Mcrnigoj wrote an extract, which sums up the game well. The full version can be found here.

“The scenario is based on many historical facts, although most events are not 100% historically accutare. Of course, you are in position to change the history. You can kill Joan of Arc during the siege of Orleans and you have a chance to take the Orleans! On the other hand, you can lose the battle of Agincourt (King Henry may fall in battle many years before he really died by dysentery in 1422).”

The thing that astounded me the most about this work, was the sheer huge amount of sounds. In the description it says there are 150+ sounds, to which I was slightly amused at the beginning of downloading. I ate my own words, as the sounds really do feature very importantly in Mcrnigoj’s work. The sound files cover anything and everything from animals, to dialogue text and battle sounds. Impressed? You should be!

Another great thing is that, the whole Hundred years war is in one whole scenario so you gain the whole feeling of the story as the game progresses further and further on. With so much crammed in you might think some of it had gone to waste, but you couldn’t be more wrong, and this campaign doesn’t seem to miss a detail.

The campaign received a highly impressive mark of a 4.8 out of 5.0 from Scenario veteran Ingo Van Thiel. Ingo’s review of The Hundred Years War can be found here. His review gives it perfect scores in all categories, except Playability. Ingo even goes as far as saying, that “the Battle of Agincourt is probably the most fascinating battle I have played in three years of Age of Kings gaming.” Words not to be taken lightly. …Time for the witty another week’s “attempt”, if you call it that from me at a witty comment.. “Give a man a fire and he’s warm for the day. Set a man on fire and he’s warm for the rest of his life.” ; )

Lightning_CN On Teamwork…
Posted by Thunder on July 4th, 2002 @ 9:34 p.m.
There’s an intersting new article at MFO by Lightning_CN that covers the better team strategies used in the game. He provides insights on everything from the classic double team, the ram express, resource sharing strategies and more. If you’re looking to own the battlefield with your pals, you all should have a read of this great article. …I love the smell of a double team in the morning… ; )

A PVP Jab…
Posted by Thunder on July 3rd, 2002 @ 5:58 p.m.
While we wait for more information on the Age of Mythology alpha, take a stop in at for a chuckle. Ol’ Washizu threw an e-mail my way —thanks Washy— pointing out today’s comic strip which involves none other than Ensemble Studios. …no doubt the ES team is lining up to smack the PVP creator around with a copy of AOM come the fall… ; )

Well after an e-mail from Greg “DeathShrimp” Street I took a closer look at today’s PVP, although it took some work to miss the big bold type at the top. (always need a little help with these morning updates) Today’s comic happens to be a creation of Paul Jaquays, one of the newer members of the Ensemble Studios team!

AOKH Ladder Standings…
Posted by Thunder on July 2nd, 2002 @ 9:34 a.m.
Our weekly look see at the AOKH Ladder standings shows Myll_Barka still firmly entrenched in the number one position. Souyrar_ may have the highest point total of anyone on the ladder, but Barka stays the champion until he loses a game and the customary rematch to someone. That’s not going to be an easy feat.

Here goes our own top ten list:

  1. 221: Myll_Barka [remains #1 until defeated]
  2. 246: Souyrar_
  3. 219: Chichiri
  4. 216: YuG_Baja_VII
  5. 211: MoFo_Revolution
  6. 210: Myll_Slaghter
  7. 208: petard_rusher
  8. 203: _Final_Boss_
  9. 192: Pezeteros_ [aka redhair_LOLITA]
  10. 188: Taiga_Milk_

Source – AOKH Ladder
Easily one of the hardest working members of the staff here is our ladder manager, Dark Side of Day. Every week, between his own ladder games and updates, he takes time out to put the spotlight on those members of the ladder who don’t shy away from strong players and take on all comers. This week in his Ladder Warriors post he sights KUBLA_Khan [aka SKD_Earthworm], who easily played the most ladder games last week than anyone else, S_A_S, cursed to be on the list forever, and LTR_SARK_USA who took on all comers last week. Congrats guys! …let us know the next time you try to break the record for most games played in a week Wormy and we’ll come out and help you along… ; ) Returns!
Posted by Thunder on July 2nd, 2002 @ 3:26 a.m.
It’s been a long time in the making, but we can finally welcome back to the community! Their forums were around, but now they are back with the ful coverage we’ve all missed:

“ officially re-launches today! After being down for several months, and changing ownership, it’s back. Daily news posts, loads of content, a high quality community, and user interaction are just a few of the many features that will be packed into the new site. Already filled with plenty of information, will be receiving content and feature updates in the coming days. Covering all things Age of Empires and Age of Mythology.” – Will “TheWill” Roman

Many long time Agers will remember from the pre-AOK days, when Merlin brought us animations and news on the development of Age II. It’s great to see the site live on thanks to the hard work of TheWill. …lookin sharp fellers… ; )

Little Lopsided…
Posted by Thunder on July 1st, 2002 @ 8:07 p.m.
At they have a poll up that pits three amazing game development companies in a head to head battle. It’s a showdown between Blizzard, Westwood, and Ensemble Studios. Who’s the best? Well, Blizzard is currently about 6000 votes in the lead. No kidding around, ES could use a few! Drop in on and see if you can’t help narrow the gap. …hmmmm, Blizzard gained another 90 votes while I wrote this… ; )