1st Map: Mission Build-An-Impossible-Siege-That!-Castle, Code 770
I noticed that Siege maps are not so popular, and for a good reason too. Most of them are really rather boring, and the poorly designed castles offer almost no challenge to the player at all. So this got me wondering: is it possible to create an impossible siege-that map? (can't be beaten without making repeated saves)
I looked at Timballisto's siege-that map, and it looked tough, but a well-planned assault by cheating (100 crossbowmen, a ram and 30 macemen) will beat it easily. My question is: Do you think that it is impossible to create an impossible siege-that map? Given all the knowledge that has been ammassed on sieging castles, defense tactics, the answer is not so simple.
Yet, I am willing to make a conjecture.
My answer is yes.
By taking into account as much as possible, I DO think that it is possible to create an impossible siege-that map. Let us take into account all the way we may undermine attackers:
1) Isolated wall tiles. A field covered in these will stop any tunneller attack in its tracks, as tunnellers will try to attack the nearest piece of wall they may find. Only a determined player with many tunellers will get anywhere.
2) Moat. Highly effective in blocking armies and tunellers. Since only relatively weak units can dig it up and they can be killed quickly by pitch ditches, moat is another great defense.
3) Funnel effect. March an army through a narrow passage, and all will be burned to death, if there are strategically placed pitch pits or engineers. On a siege that map, this can be used to devastating effect.
4) Outposts. These lone towers seemingly stuck in the middle of nowhere prove a death hazard for anything coming in their path. In a normal map, the Ai does not bother to attack it. In a siege that map, it is then possible to force the player to make a do-or-die decision. Do I waste money and build a trebuchet just to knock out that tower-mounted mangonel, or do I take my 15% of splattered units? This can make or break a player, as they are limited to only 600 gold pieces.
5) Crenellated-wall-only wall. This defense stops laddermen and siege towers in their tracks. It effectively disables them, rendering them useless. Making it necessary to force the Siege-That player to resort to trebuchets, which are inaccurate and will soon run out of stone.
6) Delaying wall and over-packed tower. Hundreds of melee troops can be killed, by a packed tower with 30 crossbowmen - when those troops are trying to beat down the annoying stone wall to reach the lord. This, plus adding three portable shields to the tower, can stop any armored army in its tracks, provided that ballistae and mangonels are there.
7) Marsh + ford. This annoying terrain slows down even the light-footed knight into something like an oozing slug, perfect targets for tower-mounted archery units.
Keeping these 7 points and human player point limits, I believe it possible that one can build an impossible siege-that map. All one needs to do is to combine all of these defensive strategies. If the human player resorts to cheating, maybe the designer needs to resort to cheating...
This is my rendition of an unbeatable castle in siege that. In the hope of becoming the first to build an impssible castle, I am trying a radical new form of castle design. Radiating walls fan out to protect defenses from tunneller attacks, use the funnel effect, and provide maximal line of sight for castle defenders. Strategically placed outpost will be a great nuisance. Maximized effect of troop-slowing of the swamp and ford, and if that is all lost, then sheer strength of walls: two layers of wall, 4 tiles thick. Guarded by an almost indestructible tower.
The first person who beats this map has the new honor of posting how they did it. This map is subject to change at any moment, so list version number.
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|Battle Mage corp
Ok mate I'll explain how I won this map. I don’t consider it such a high honor because I managed to see the victory panel in less than ten minutes. This review may seem harsh but some of it’s components are based on the designing of other people. Like the map design.
So lets begin.
Because I want my reviews to be as clear as possible I will explain my entire strategy. I want to add that when I downloaded your map I didn’t read what you wrote. I read it just five minutes ago so I haven’t used the hints and tricks that you posted. Right so…..I am in the main menu and here is the army I chose: 1 maceman (to destroy the walls if the trebuchets run out of stone) ,6 engineers (to man two trebuchets twice) ,100 X-bowmen and with the remaining 730 (I am not sure) points I took 104 archers. Well the game started and I wanted to put my engineers behind a small hill so they can take down the towers ,but I noticed that there was a tower in the far left with a ballista. I ordered my archers to go and fire the ballista while the slow crossbowmen make it to the tower. It took about ten shots and the ballista was down despite of the shields. I didn’t waste my units on the other ranged units on the tower my target was the ballista. I gave the retreat order and my trebuchets were ready to bombard the 2 towers near the castle. Because both of them were behind a hill the two ballistae couldn’t take them down. The first tower was destroyed and the second was in the red zone. I made just one trebuchet to finish the second tower off and with the cows from the trebuchets I poisoned most of the units. Then I moved my ranged units really close to the tower spots and gave an order to “attack there”. It took about two minutes for the random bolts and arrows to kill them off. Now I was off for the final tower I had 150 gold for the last trebuchet. I had more units than the enemy had in the tower but I didn’t want to risk them because in the tower there were like 20 x-bowmen and 2-3 archers with a brazier. I realized that pitch was laid somewhere close and build my trusty trebuchet. I quickly took down the tower and repeated the cow and “attack here” routine and my maceman had the OK sign to destroy the walls. In the mean time I was firing at the lord. When the maceman destroyed all the walls I ordered all my troops to go in the keep ( I had like 180) and he was history. However if you don’t think this is true because I read you had a tough time with it I’ll happily submit pictures of the game and send you a save file before I killed the lord so you can see for yourself that I haven’t messed with the scripting. Well I am happy that you tried to make an impossible map and that’s why I give you a three if I’m true to the rate system this map was more suited for two because It had no playability whatsoever just patience and good strikes from the siege equipment.
From what you read above you can see that the balance was a big issue I was left with 160-170 units in the end which was very high and for my standards I had a major advantage. I see that you have thought of many useful tricks with the walls and tunnel effect and everything but they just didn’t come in play. I never used a tunneler and I never sent my troops into a certain slaughter. Normally I write a lot about the balance but I can’t think of anything else. The entire game was just too short and uninteresting. In my opinion you focused a lot in one direction of the map like blocking and slowing down and just didn’t pay attention to more serious things. I noticed that you posted it in the forums and two days later the map was out. Not enough attention was paid in the making of it. And that’s about it.
I liked that you wanted to contribute to the siege that section of stronghold heaven and I appreciate it. The main boost for this map was the fact that it was unbeatable but since I won easily I don’t think that was so creative. Not much else to say. There wasn’t a castle just walls and strategically placed towers designed to slow you down.
Map Design: 3
Well mate as I mentioned this is the terraining of the Firefly designers and that’s why this score is lower. I don’t know why we have to rate the map design. But because I know you are a great designer I think you could have easily made a perfect terrain worthy of 5. So consider this as a perfect score.
Well there wasn’t so much of a story and instructions as your personal thoughts and design tactics in the making of the map. I don’t think it would have been that hard to imagine something interesting that can contradict my words on the story and the words of others.
I am rather disappointed from this map mainly because I thought it would really be a tough nut to crack. The review may be short but it follows the entire game from start to finish. I don’t know what’s wrong the matter with the way that you and BloodyAnnoying communicate and I won’t comment it. But after his comments on the map you did the same on his new map which I don’t think is very wise or necessary. But in summary I can say that this map is far from being unbeatable. However I am pretty sure that if you waste on your gold on swordsmen and place them near the signpost the game would become more interesting. A few ballistae near the castle lots of walls and this would become a truly tough map. I have also had ideas about “Siege that” maps but abandoned my plans because they bring a lot of disappointment as hard as you work on it there will always be someone who will find a dirty or simple trick how to win the map.
[Edited on 10/30/07 @ 11:50 AM]