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The Challenge

Author File Description
Captain Diablo
File Details
Map Size: 300x300 (Medium)
Difficulty: Normal

The throne of Baldwin has changed hands multiple times in the last few centenials, not by the stains of civil war or by the hands of enemies, but by the way, nay, ART that belonged only to Baldwin Kingdom and looked down on by foriegn eyes. This way of secceeding the throne had been started by the nation's humble founder, The Rat,started because of a citizen's comments of his failed conquests and insults toward his appalingly poor military tactics. To prove this man wrong, The Rat carved out a piece of land to wage war on in a controlled environment.

In one corner, the heavily defended throne room, where the current kings sits and waits.

In the other corner, the Chellenger's Arena. Where the challenger builds up his strength to prove that he is the true champion.

The Rat had been easily defeated in record time by his challenger; The Snake. After that the throne fell to The Pig, finally The Pig succumbed to The Wolf, he is the current ruler of Baldwin Kingdom. All of these challenges had required massive amounts of time, strategy, and effort, so much so that it must be started when the challenger is at or around the young age of 14 to be completed in time.

At last, the challenge has fallen to you. To prepare for the horendous years to come, you started to review everything there was to know about the Challenge, troop types, terrain. Such as, you read, the Snake had won because he had blockaded the Rat's hunting with portable shields and archers, the Pig had won because of his fierce and quick attacks, and the Wolf had won, well, because of his uncaring attitude toward human life.

Was nothing sacred to the King? Was even the throne itself sacred? If not, then he does not deserve to be King! In your mind and in your heart you knew everything needed to be known. As such you set out to your arena, your home, your very life.

I'd like to thank Lord Michael for playtesting, yet again, lol. The text box for Netscape is a little wiggy so please bear with me while I fix it.

Hints are included in the zip file! Enjoy!
AuthorReviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Map Design4.0
Review of Captain Diablo’s “The Challenge” scenario

Overall score 4.2 – A more than excellent scenario.

A maddening and then, eventually, highly satisfying Challenge. You really should download this. And don’t give up when things don’t go well at the start. Rethink and try again. That is all part of The Challenge :-)

Playability 4 – Excellent
I played on Normal and had a tough time on the first playing. I had a rethink and tried again – and won :-) Making the economy function is tough. The author’s hint in the comments on the site helped a bit. The terrain, the arena, the King’s stronghold, the resources, these all seemed to have been planned and placed for reasons to do with playability. I had good fun figuring out how to solve The Challenge.

Balance 4 - Excellent
I played on Normal and won second time around. I have not tried it on Hard yet. (I don’t see that I could survive any stronger invasions). There was plenty to be worried about in surviving the invasions. The resource situation (wood is part of the challenge) is tricky. However, I don’t want to give too much away here but I have already said in one of my comments above that You don't have to weather many invasions before they stop and you can concentrate on building up and assaulting. In a way that was a relief. Although the various setbacks the player has to deal with keep him on his toes. (But maybe a timer here might have added still further to the tension? It would have to have been tuned with play testing though.)

Creativity 5 - Outstanding
I can never decide whether I am talking about Creativity or map design but here goes:
For me the outstanding creative aspects about this map are
1) The setting and the concept of The Challenge
2) The overall look of The Challenge with it’s arena and menacingly marshy King’s fort.
3) The arena that the player must defend while forced to leave it open to attack.

I do not know of any other maps that use this idea. (There is “The Joust” by Lord Arcwynd, which is about a contest but there the similarity ends.)

Map Design 4 – Excellent
Playability and balance are well supported by excellent execution here. The good size of the enemy fort left the player’s people vulnerable to being picked off by archers. The lay of the land allows the enemy defences to be cracked. The limiting of build and trading options is a major feature of The Challenge. The arena area provides enough room for the economy required on Normal setting to win.

Story/Instructions 4 - Excellent
The site has an excellent story explaining the Challenge and setting the scene. There is a mini-map. In a rather quirky departure, the story in the map itself, is an epilogue as if you have already won. (This idea, while unusual, was slightly confusing for me as a player coming to the map. This is a relatively minor criticism in that I felt that the in-map story should tell the player what to expect. It is a nice idea I am just not sure it works.) There is a hints file in the zip that contains some good clues. It points the way to a different solution to that which I used to win.

Additional comments
As I have said in my comment previously: Thank you, author. I had an enjoyable time solving your map :-)

I include here the URL for the review guidelines for the use of anyone who might take issue with any of my reviews.
(There is also a live link an the top left of this page).

[Edited on 10/07/06 @ 05:28 PM]

Lord Michael I
Map Design3.0
Playability: 4
Very nice playability, extra fun! I entertained myself so much atacking that stupid castle of the wolf, i saw impregnable...
Only 1 point deducted for the time of play. (I spent a whole week trying to end it, at the 7th try)

Balance: 4
The introduction of ale, unlike the older versions make the map a bit easier, but the invasions even it up. Still, the castle to attack is a bit too well defended, making the siege too hard (Atleast for me)

Creativity: 5
Splendid. Just splendid. The story, the arena, everything. Nothing else to say.

Map Design: 3
The arena is nice, but the terrain and the land is a bit plain...

Story/Instructions: 5
The story is spectacular, very ineresting and well though. Well done!

A very nice map, it's worth the download!

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Map Design3.5
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Size:530.44 KB