Posted on 12/22/03 @ 12:00 AM (updated 04/12/05
The Conquest III-
The Third part of the ten part series, The Conquest is a map where the forces of Prince Edward have moved on after taking shelter in Heredith castle and have marched south to a newly built concentric castle built over the plains of Porata. Your men have decided that instead of going straight for an open siege. The best thing to do would be go around the cliffs and into the woods where they could build up troops and a keep. However, they must stay hidden otherwise the rat will send troops to disbatch you...
The Conquest in general follows the path of prince Edward and many other characters in their conquest for peace in the islands of Hertoin. The first five maps will be set in Sallium and the last five in Dinlathia. As well as the prologue video which can be downloaded here there will be a epilogue video.
The Conquest III is quite a difficult map . The maps will get harder and longer as the series goes along although more siege like maps will emerge in the second half of the series. This map should be played by both experience and newer players as the balance is set to enable a magority of people to play. In the zip file there are tips on how to play the map and of course - the map.
If you have any comments, suggestions or complaints please e-mail me at
I would greatly appreciate your comments on the site.
I would also like to thank Talos for his extremely useful playtesting.
Thanks a lot !
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Playability and balance: A very playable map which should appeal to both people who like attacking and people who like defending. The scenario is quite tough for a third map in a series of twelve, but nevertheless possible. The invasions are scheduled closely together, and prove to be very intense.
Map design and creativity: The Conquest III remains on my list as one of the most beautiful Stronghold maps I've seen. Deserves more than a 5. Each bit of terrain is thoughtfully designed, and the whole effect is that of a authentic countryside. The amount of build space is just right and the iron is placed far away from the player's castle, making mace-production suitably challenging.
The first attack was scheduled creatively, coming directly from the Rat's castle (though in the editor the troops won't move), and must have taken a bit of effort.
Storyline and instructions: A short and sweet storyline which follows closely to the plot. Comprehensive instructions are given to help weaker players (like me!).
Another good map and story. Again a bit on the easy side.
The third map in The Conquest series is another good quality map from the NAT team. It has all the elements required for a good invasion scenario, and this time there is more at stake. Not just content with fending off invasions, you also have the Rat's castle to take. This opened up the gameplay element from the previous two maps and give the player more to do. It's well designed and events flow from start to finish. The invasions are tricky but possible to overcome and assaulting the Rat's castle is nothing short of fun. Very enjoyable map. Nothing at all wrong with this in terms of gameplay/playability.
NAT has provided a good challenge here, defend your castle/fortification and attack an enemy AI lord. There's always plenty to do, and as well as managing an economy you have to be fairly astute in what to do with regard to your military build-up. I concentrated my efforts in the first few years on defending the settlement, only really rallying troops towards the very end. I stormed the Rat's castle with 40 macemen, enough to break through the walls and storm the keep. I thought the time allowed to kill the Rat was perfect, just long enough. Not quite a 5 score, but only because the map was a little too easy. It's not a problem though, and there are many good aspects of balance here to ensure a good score is deserved.
There aren't that many maps available for download at Stronghold Heaven that have this set-up (build/defend castle & storm another) and work as well as this does. It's all very well done though. NAT is building up an interesting storyline and plenty of background information, which leads me to believe in the land being created. Everything seems to fit together nicely (story/landscape/plot). Excellent work once again.
Map Design: 5/5
There's no question that NAT has got the art of landscaping sussed. It's a wonderful, open, gently undulating terrain with the Rat's castle perched on top of higher ground overlooking a very well modelled area of marshy land. The attention to detail is evident and the 'ford' tool is used very, very well in the rivers, creating a natural looking effect of stones at the riverbank. It's small nuances like this that I appreciate. The Rat's castle looks fine, small and relatively simplistic, but supported by other buildings and farms outside of the castle walls. It could be any castle in the world, such is the natural look of the fortification. Quality work once more.
The series is developing nicely. The story is of excellent quality and quantity. As with previous maps, the support to this series also comes by way of a trailer. You really can't fault the effort being made here in developing a ficticious world and although i'm looking for some real spice in the storyline, it's still of a quality that ensures full marks are very well deserved.
With the third map in the series, NAT have explored other options available by submitting the map as an invasion. It's a good, solid scenario that keeps you interested, with plenty to do, without being outrageously ambitious and thus suffering as a result. I really do rate the three maps to date very highly, and i'd recommend this one too without any hesitation as a quality download.
Keep up the great work, NAT. Things are shaping up very nicely indeed! :)