300 Spartans (Version 1.3)
Posted on 07/02/07 @ 05:59 AM (updated 09/30/07
Title: 300 Spartans
Map size: 400x400
Map type: Stronghold Crusader invasion
Level: Depends on the player’s skills (Normal – Hard)
Playing type: defense
Win condition: no enemy and invasions left.
Lose condition: lord killed.
Starting date: 1484 June
Extra features: Sounds and files.
Battle of Thermopylae is, in my opinion, one of the greatest examples of strength, courage and loyalty in history. A small contingent of brave men fought against an enormous army with only one purpose: to defend their freedom and fatherland. They died being betrayed but devoted to their laws. This battle soon became an example of heroism and bravery for everyone throughout the world. After the battle an epithet was curved in a stone:
Go tell the Spartans, passerby,
That here, by Spartan law, we lie
The modern monuments for Spartans and Thespians at Thermopylae:
A lesson of history:
In 480 BC a small alliance of Greek city - states fought against invaders from Persia holding the narrow pass at Thermopylae. A small force of Spartans (The whole Spartan army didn’t march due to the religious festival), led by king Leonidas, and other allies held the massive army of Xerxes I for three days. Leonidas used the terrain and with his well trained contingent blocked the narrow pass. Xerxes men outnumbered the Greeks vastly, but the Persians couldn’t get trough the mountains. Later a native resident named Ephialtes betrayed Leonidas and his allies by revealing a small goat path which went through the mountains. When the Greeks found out about the path, Leonidas dismissed the main force and left with only 300 Spartans and 700 Thespians. Xerxes’ army finally broke the Greek defense lines, but suffered huge losses. Leonidas and his brave 300 gave time for all of Greece to prepare for war and later Persians were crushed at Salamis, then at Platea, where Spartans resembled their full strength leading a pan- Greek army. This was the end of the Greco–Persian War and with it the expansion of the Persian Empire in Europe.
The Numbers : This topic was hotly debated because of the various facts and offered numbers but finally historians concluded that approximately 150.000 – 200.000 troops compounded the army of Xerxes’.
The Greeks marched to Thermopylae with approximately 7000 soldiers.
There are two screenings of the Battle at Thermopylae: 300 Spartans (1962) and 300 (2006).
300 Spartans (a.k.a. The Lion of Sparta): I think very little of you could have seen this movie but still this is the first screening of the brave Leonidas and his 300 soldiers. The film was very colorful, the actors were brilliant. This movie revealed feelings and empathy of Greeks, the ingenuity and courage of Leonidas. The brutal force and stunning battle scenes weren’t showed here but still, in my opinion, the screening is great, especially of the fact, that it was filmed in early 70s.
Director – Rudolph Mate
Leonidas - Richard Egan
300:The new screening showed numerous great and stunning battle scenes, new technologies helped to add realistic effects, etc. Spartan physical strength was revealed amazingly, many of us remember great phrases which were used in this movie. Although without these great battle scenes the film was almost empty: it had very little explanation, facts etc. Still this screening has to be seen by everyone, who knows about battle of Thermopylae.
Director - Zack Snyder
Leonidas - Gerard Butler
P.S. This is just my opinion about the screenings.
About the mission:
I have used details from both screenings and added my own ideas. I know that some of you may not like it, as the mission has a quite unusual playability. I also didn’t set the real number of Thespians (700), as huge invasions wouldn’t show up then. Here are a few more facts:
• A lot of work and play testing had to be done to achieve more realistic enemy actions. Now, when Ephialtes clears the goat path for Persians, Xerxes sends a huge swarm with Immortals in front. Persians will try to surround our heroes, sooner or later they will die (Just like history tells us).
• The mission’s script is quite tricky: Spartan army couldn’t help the small force of Leonidas due to the religious festival and nor shall it in the mission. Only a part of Sparta was designed, and that part had no gatehouses. If you try to make a path by deleting your walls and try to help your 300 warriors, in 1495 the scenario will test whether the keep is enclosed. If not, you will be attacked by Persians until Sparta will fall.
Historical explanation: If Xerxes finds out that Sparta has a weak spot he will order his enormous army to capture the city. Sooner or later Sparta will fall.
It also doesn’t matter whether you or Persians break Spartan walls. This fact enforces you to guard the Thermopylae path and prevent Persians from approaching the city. If the enemy marches inside before September 1495, you will have no chance to win.
• In summary your mission is to hold the narrow path as long as you can and later destroy the Persians using Sparta’s defense. You mustn’t allow the enemy to break a path in to the city before September 1495.
• It was very hard to find a map of Sparta so I had to improvise with the design.You can notice that no Christian churches or structures were used. The sculptures resemble Greek gods. A bottomless well, which was seen in the new 300, wasn’t forgotten either. I have also added a council auditorium in the king’s hall. Spartan army is training in the north corner of the city.
• A small cabin, which belongs to Ephialtes, is set in the mountains. He is the traitor, who will lead Persians to surround the 300 using the narrow goat path, which is full of old gin traps and pitfalls.
• The Thespians are waiting for your orders in the mountains. They can be a real help fighting against numerous slaves of Xerxes. You can also use Leonidas’ ingenuity and try to burn the enemy, but do it carefully: you troops burn as well.
To make the mission more realistic, I’ve added sounds from both movies and few other files. The sounds can be left aside if you want to play with the original speech but please, replace the three other files. (They are in this archive) Using these extra features is very easy:
Step 1: Find your Stronghold Crusader folder (Usually the directory is C:\ Program files\Firefly Studios)
Step 2: Find a folder, named fx, open it. Then open the folder, named Speech.
Step 3: Replace the files with 300 sounds.
Note: these sounds are a bit longer so if you trigger your troops too often, the sounds might mingle. I would offer changing the sound options: music – 35, fx – 35, speech – 100.
Step 1: Find your Stronghold Crusader folder (Usually the directory is C:\ Program files\Firefly Studios)
Step 2: Find a folder, named gm, open it.
Step 3: Replace the files with 300 other three files.
One of the results: you will see that Leonidas is now in a saddle.
Note: Sparta won’t fall if Leonidas is killed, but the city will surrender if the second king is assassinated. Historical explanation: The main rule in Sparta was the National Council and two kings.
You can save the folders (Speech and gm) in a safe directory before replacing, and later, when done playing, you can simply replace the files with the saved ones. You can also download the original files here
If you will have any problems please contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Version 1.1: Since the players might think of using the Spartans to circle the signpost, this trick of playability is now cleared. Historical explanation: Xerxes sets various pits and traps to avoid Spartan attacks.
Version 1.2: More final invasions, a bit harder Persian hordes and the number of Spartan army has been also reduced. The mission should become harder and more challenging now.
Version 1.3: Version 1.2 errors are now fixed, minor terrain changes.
Have fun playing…
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GREAT!!! The movie is interpretated pretty good... I got a lot of fun, playing it... it's just like in the movie!
Perhaps the best balance it could be... It's hard to balance with 300 swordsmen, but you made it... Ver good!
Everybody knows your creativity! The idea for creating a map based on a movie is great itself!
Map Design: 5
the design was made so good... Didn't found any bugs and it's very realistic... with attention to every detail. Well done!
Ah, the whole map page is managed with HTML fies and encryption! That's super! The story was very interesting for me...
Perhaps the best SHC invasion I've played :) That's the payment for your hard work!Thanks for sharing!
After palying on "Europe and Asia Will Kneel", and "Sins's of the Father Chapter 2 - Jack Wolverine", I played on "300 Spartans". It was really a good play.
Well, I think there's two times in this map. In the first time, we must use the 300 Spartans against all the enemies who attack us from everywhere. It was really tense, especially when we must fight horses archers, or Arabian archers. Against the spearmen or the slave, I used a combination of archers and swordsmen, but we must also attack the enemies, instead of staying in the canyon, waiting for them. However, like in the movie, all my troops were killed by the last assaults. So,the second time of the map is the defense of the city, quite hard. I won with a city destroyed, and almost all of my men killed. Yet, it was very funny. A good illustration of the movie. We fight against a lot of troops, killing them. Last but not least, I love the voice of the Spartans, replacing those of the swordsmen. Well, you know, I saw "300" in French version ; the original voices are very more... thrilled. They roar ! Moreover, you even added the treator. In the movie (if I've a good memory), it's the man who permit to the army of the Turckish to encircle Leonidas' men. A really good work.
Well, we feel really like the 300 Spartan. We have a very great warriors against a lot and lot of poor Turkish soldiers, exactly like in the soldiers, even if we don't have the elephants xD. So, it was really good, very intense. We don't have any moment of peace, the time between the attacks is very short, and the two final assaults were very strong ! During all the invasions, Iwas saying : "Well, it's very easy, I kill them without any difficulty". But, well, when I saw all the last troops, I have a different point of view. Exactly like in the movie. During all the movie, Leonidas and his men kill all the enemies withtout any problems, and they all die at the end... Really good. Moreover, we d'ont finish on the death of Leonidas, we can also play the role of the other Greek soldiers.
Basically, the map isn't really original. We have an army against another army, and a castle to defend. Ok, I must say this is original, but, at first view, it deserve 4 or 4.5. Yet, like in "Jack Wolverine", you add some other files to have a better experience : a knight/Lord, and some voices changed. So, well, after all of that, 5 is a minimum.
Map Design: 4.5
The mountains in the centre were very beautiful, with a canyon which make me think to the movie. Very beautiful.
Some pictures, historical events about the events described in the movie, and a description of the two movies which are about the incredible story of Leonidas and his Spartan...
In a word, an excelent work. Like all the the time, I give you my congratulations.
The way your forces fill the gap and have reinforcements make you feel strong!!! That is until the 5-7 wave of men and then the hole is behind you and have to defend that!!! For me it was quite intense fighting against impossible odds!!
I like how troops would come from two signposts instead of one and the hidden path was ingenuous!!!
I like that the map was based on a historic battle very much.
Map Design: 4.5
I rate this a 4.5 cause it seemed that you just filled it with rock and even wall on the north end. The rest is good though.
The story is accurate and good I liked it.
All in all it was very enjoyable and was fun to play!
This is certainly one of the most epic maps ever. From the beginning to the end, anyone would feel shaken by the atmosphere this map creates. Words cannot describe this feeling and it is clearly the mapmaker's effort for this map overtaken many many maps altogether. Some tried to create a movie-based map for the 300, but none did it like AZ. A top gameplay, the movie scenario really fits into.
So you look upon your 300 brave swordsmen, then you look upon the couple of groups of slaves coming to kill the lord.... eeasy! but after endless waves of so-called weak troops, besides the doubt of winning the map anymore, you wonder "are the invasions going to end?". Plus, stronger troops like assassins seem to appear, the player is in real trouble and a win is no longer certain. It takes skill and patience to win the map, but when the victory screen shows up, you realize it was worth the time.
Every aspect of the movie fits perfectly within the map and amazing is that the mapmaker's originality is very well noticeable. It's not just a replica of the movie, it's the historical event from AZ's eyes which stick to the movie very well too. The extra files also do their job creating the awesome gameplay atmosphere and it is something very original.
Map Design: 4.5
So why not a 5 here? I felt like the terrain is not "perfect". Although you did an awesome job, some things in the nature and castle seemed like their place isn't there. Except that, everything was excellently shaped and looked like a masterpiece.
I can't give anything but a 5 here. A tremendous effort is reflected in the story as well. Historical notes and details, they all work together in making this scenario a masterpiece recreation of the historical battle from Thermopylae.