Legend of the Green Man
'I am a face in the trees,
Amid the thickest leaves,
I am here and there,
I live everywhere,
I am of myth and lore,
You've ne'er seen me before,
But I watch you, see?
Oh, you can't find me!'
Stood on a small hillock, hands resting on hips, young Daelbeth took in a huge breath of air deep into his lungs. The air was slightly clearer than on the woodland floor, less damp and musty, but still there were distinct smells of rotting oak and stagnant pools, rich in decaying matter, and mixed into a heady but sweet, earthy smell. It was comforting, almost welcoming. The darkness of the woodland below told another story; an ancient forest, hardly trodden by human foot, hid secrets and dangers at every turn. Marsh Wolves were adept at creeping up on you without making a sound. The earth was uneven and broken, the vegetation hiding jagged rocks that would cut to the bone if you slipped on the greasy surface. But what Daelbeth found most eerie, and at the same time the most absorbing and intriguing, were the tales of the 'Green Man'. And it was here, overlooking the very heart of a woodland landscape, itself so ancient that time appeared to have forgotten it, that the young Daelbeth would explore.
But Daelbeth had work to do too. He was to oversee the formation of a small settlement deep in the heart of the woodland, known to all as Great Fermyn Woods. Daelbeth was an experienced swordsman, with a cunning about him that made him the perfect scout for tasks such as these. The trees grew slowly and strongly, producing some, if not the finest wood, for making longbows. The rich, peaty soil was extremely fertile and produced the best hops in the Rose Shire of Fermyn, an absolutely huge tract of land some hundred miles long.
Great Fermyn Woods was also a very spiritual place, long spoken of in folklore and many people believed that the ancient woodland is the home of the 'Green Man'. Daelbeth knew all too well of the tales and stories, of the myths and legends, and whilst it excited him, it also worried him. By all accounts, nobody had ever really seen the Green Man. Nobody really knew if he were just a tale of folklore, an old Pagan god or deity spoken of over many years. Some old tales state that his face is green, with thick leaves of hawthorn for hair, and branches intertwined around his brow. But despite this strange appearance, his face is welcoming and warm, knowing and comforting.
Daelbeth knew that he would have to tread carefully around the Great Fermyn Wood, for his actions may appease or upset the Green Man. He certainly knew that his influence would be felt during this task, and it was this mix of excitement and trepidation that Daelbeth felt as he returned deep into the woodland to set about organising the settlement and the goods required.
This is my first ever economic scenario submitted to Stronghold Heaven. I have tried to return to the classic scenarios that Stronghold does so well, so there isn't any eye candy or pre-built castle to grab your attention. What I have tried to develop is a woodland landscape, with a mysterious feel about it, purely by terrain modelling. The landscape is reminiscent of some ancient woodland areas where I live and I wanted to capture the atmosphere of a secretive and untouched forest area that could support the myths and folklore that were rife during this period in history. The Green Man is a famous figure in folklore across Europe, his face staring out at you from the corbels of many a church in England. Nobody really knows who or what the Green Man is, and it is this element of mystery that seems to appeal to so many.
In terms of the scenario, it is fairly simple. You have ale to brew and bows to manufacture, as well as a population requirement, a gold requirement and a religious coverage to attain. However, I wanted to make it fairly tricky to set up an economy. You will be provided with the basics and little else, and a time limit to meet the goals. Experienced players of the game shouldn't have too much trouble in beating this map, but then it hasn't been designed to be too difficult to beat, and has elements of a freebuild map about it. There are periods when little happens... depending on how you play the map, of course! Many events are scheduled to occur when certain criteria are met.
Any feedback about this map will be welcomed. It is meant to be an enjoyable, moderately easy map to beat. I hope you have fun.
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Great map - another masterpiece by Sullis! This map is very playable - it shows as I rarely play economics. As the author said it had a feel of a free build whcih was rather nice. There was plenty of building spacebut without the map looking empty - a great skill to a have. For balance there were two reasons for no 5. As the author said the map was quite easy. This appealed to me a great deal but it was a bit too easy. However first time I had an unfortunate incident. I was just about to get the resources needeed when bandits and wolves attacked (this was scripted purposefully I presume). I held them off but it took me a couple of months to get the full resources. I completed the economic goals and a bar appeared at the top - time untill victory, (it was moving quite fast). The problem was that before it got to the end the defeat kicked in. Really annoying! I replayed and won with about a year to go. Anyway moving on the map is wonderfully sculpted and designed. This is great work! Very creatite - the author did what he set out to do whcih was to create an old, mystical medieval feel. No questions about fives there. Realy fun and satisfying building on a well sculpted countryside. Very nice story, creative and unique and the story was true to the map as well. Brilliant! Overall a must play map, even if you don't enjoy economics. Really good for beginners as well. Superb!
Beautiful map with a natural looking landscape that quite evoked the image of the Green Man! I won the first time out, despite all the bandits, fires, plagues, and other nasty things! I enjoyed having to clear some of the farmland before it could be used. Terrific story on the description page. Very nicely done!
Why not 5? It could be, of course, but my opinion that everything should be just a bit slowly to let us enjoy the wonderfull landscape
Everything is absolutely in classical Stronghold style (and that's great), no extraordinary ideas
Map Design: 5
If i could, I would give 7 for the exellent map design, so natural and real!
5+ interesting story
Thank you for the map, it's so enjoyable and good playing.
[Edited on 12/17/05 @ 01:20 PM]
It is my first review. Therefore I am not that sure about the marks I gave. Please do not mind this!
Easy and absolutely non-frustating with events, but tricky with the timing. Like economic maps should be.
Well - conservative. That`s fine.
Map Design: 4
It really looks good and natural.
I do not need long stories that does not help you clearing the map. This is O.K. like this. But little instructions like: "This is a r e a l economic map and no invasion" or sth like this would either be O.K.(hopefully this is not too much hint)
I like this puritarian economic maps!
Being a very average player, I'm still finding this map pretty tricky on normal. Lots of playability here in my opinion. The simplicity of the scenario also appeals to my own tastes.
Perfectly balanced in my opinion. Plenty of time to admire the design as well as lots of events to keep you on your toes.
Simplicity and minimalism are some of the best forms of creativity and this map really delivers. Nothing especially new here but creative use of limited options allows sulis' creativity to shine through. It also has a certain eerie feel to the whole scenario which is really cool and I'm still not sure exactly how this is achieved.
Map Design: 5
Amazing stuff. Very natural with loads of layers of depth, making for a gritty, hard edged, realistic look and feel. Simply awesome and really inspirational.
The slightly off-keel style to the back story really works with the map. Again, the eerie feel comes from the folklore aspect which is rarely seen in maps.
Making good economic scenarios is hard to do. Just compare the amount of uploaded invasions to economics for proof of this.....
Sulis has used the most basic ingredients and allowes true creative flair to shine through in this scenario, making for a completely revamped feel to an old template.